|Nikkor 70-200 VR AFS + TC17EII Sharpness Tests on Nikon D70|
I observe that this softness and ghosting only happens at the very far end of the zoom. I have heard that stopping down the lens might make it perform better. I also noticed that when zoomed out this was not a problem. People advised that my problem might have been motion blur, or a VR problem. I wasn't convinced; I was pretty sure it was just the TC+lens combo. I sent back my first and ordered another TC17EII, and the results were the same.
So, I set out to find if I could solve this problem by either stopping down the lens, or zooming out a little. I have found that both of these are solutions.
All photos were taken on a tripod within seconds of each other, with the same camera settings and VR off.
These methods should yield ghost-free, sharp images.
ps. I first noticed this problem in my ultimate frisbee photography, see below: