Shun Cheung , Jun 16, 2005; 11:45 a.m.
I currently have both the 80-200mm/f2.8 AF-S and 70-200mm/f2.8 AF-S VR. I didn't run that many careful tests, but optically they are quite similar. The VR is flare prone, but I haven't tested that aspect in great detail yet.
Earlier I compared the zooms with 2X TCs vs. 300mm primes. There really is no comparison. You may be better off with 1.4x TCs, but I have little doubt that the 300mm is superior.