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DPChallenge Forums >> Tips, Tricks, and Q&A >> NIKON
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11/24/2006 09:59:05 PM · #1
I am a intermediate photographer who is very much into photography and for this Christmas the thing i want is a Nikon camera and I was wondering what the best Nikon is for me.
I think that a d40, d50, or d80 would be best,a d50 being the best setup for me, because the d40 seems like a really basic setup where i will not learn much, the d80 seems to fancy for a simple 1st amateur SLR

my photos can be seen at Photos

I would really like you input on which camera of any is the best, i think a nikon is best for me so on those basis...THANKS
11/24/2006 10:14:43 PM · #2
I purchased the Nikon D50 because it was the best DSLR I could afford at the time. But if possible, I would have bought the D80 or even the D200.
These higher capability cameras are just as easy to use as the D50 or the D40 but, as your skills grow, the camera will be less of a limiting factor than the lower end models. I also have a Nikon CP8800. The difference in pixel count 8mp vs. 6mp has a greater influence on photo quality than I would have guessed. If at all possible, get the Nikon D80.
11/24/2006 10:27:11 PM · #3
The d50 is a nice camera but does have it's limitations. If you think the d80 is a bit much. perhaps a d70 or d70s would be a better choice for you. You get a few more features than the d50 with a more solid shell.
11/24/2006 10:32:30 PM · #4
Don't rule out the D70s, its a great camera. The D40 doesn't have the the part that sdjusts the focus on the older Nikon lens. Any of those models will take great photos. If you can swing it the D80 has been getting good reviews.
11/24/2006 10:51:26 PM · #5
I'd go with the d80 or d200 if possible. It may be fancy to begin with but you can grow into the features as you progress. (better than growing out of a camera because its limiting in what its capable of doing)

Just my thought on the matter... :) Good luck with whatever you choose.

:)
11/24/2006 10:55:48 PM · #6
I have a D200 and I like the look and size of the D40 as a compact second body camera, but I wouldn't have it as a main camera...perhaps the d80 is the best of your options here

I will be getting a D40 hopefully soon and put a 50mm 1.8 on it and leave it alone...it is only millimetres bigger than the 'smallest DSLR' - The Olympus e400...so a great size to just carry around if all I want is a compact body OR, a great second body if I want to avoid lens changes and sensor dust
11/24/2006 11:01:11 PM · #7
Originally posted by MQuinn:

Don't rule out the D70s, ...

... or the D70. They can be had real cheap now. With the latest firmware upgrade installed they nearly match the D70s.

There is not a lot of difference in price between a D70 and a D50, but the D70 has a bit more performance room.

David
11/24/2006 11:02:40 PM · #8
I'm just beginning the photography hobby again after a 20ish year break. (OK, OK... I'm a noob! :) but I went ahead and got the D80. My hope is that I will eventually grow into it. I agree wholeheartedly with ' . substr('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21_F.gif', strrpos('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21_F.gif', '/') + 1) . ' Shecoya in that you are better off growing into rather than out of the camera. It just makes more sense to me monetarily as well. Why spend a fortune on a camera that you'll have to replace in a year or two?

Having said that, make sure that you can afford the money you'll be spending before going big. :)
11/25/2006 12:53:56 AM · #9
Personally when tax time comes I'm going for the D80. I thought about going to the lower end ones because of price, but you lose all those precious megapixels (6.1 vs 10.2).

It depends how big of a jump you want. You might be absolutely extatic with a D50 or even a D40. A lot has to do with where you're coming from. My dad has a D200 that I got to use a few weeks ago and I thought about just tucking it under my arm and running, heh. I want the D200 really really bad, but I know once I get my hands on a D80 I'll be perfectly happy and still have money to pay rent, heh.

I buy by a general rule. I don't get low end and I don't get high end. I go middle to middle high. Low end will seem outdated too quickly. High end will make you broke and seem like you wasted money when the next generation comes out. That to me means I get the D80 in a couple months.

I don't think I helped, but that's just the thought process I'm going through.
11/28/2006 01:01:10 AM · #10
I would personally avoid the D40 or anything that severely restricts your capabilities, perhaps even the D50.

I strongly reccomend the D70. You can get them for not as expensive and they are fine cameras. As well, people are selling them to upgrade to D200s or whatever, so you may get a good deal for a used one.
11/28/2006 01:09:38 AM · #11
i have the d70 and the d200.
the 6 vs. 10 megapixels isnt a whole lot, not as much as people often think anyways. however the noise levels on the newer nikons are much improved.

They are both great cameras, my d70 can do most of what my d200 can, cept take as much of a beating.

I wouldn't rule out a used d70 either. I would get that over a d40 or d50.
d80 is nice but d70 could be best bang for your buck right now.
11/28/2006 02:25:11 AM · #12
I have the D70, my kid has the D50.

I'm SO glad I got the D70. I agree with petrakka that the D70 is a great little camera!

However...

I just taught a class for Nikon on the wireless speedlight system - the main reason I went with Nikon BTW was the iTTL metering system with wireless flashes...

The D80 has the Commander Mode capability of the SB-800 built into it- I cannot overstate how huge that is for lighting in all kinds of situations.

I had to spend $350 to add that capability to my D70 (buying an SB800) - and it was SO WORTH IT!!! I don't know how much more a D80 is, but I would seriously look at that if you see any chance of speedlights in your future -

If you don't see speedlights in your future, get your hands on the Nikon video "The Speed of Light" and you WILL buy speedlights.

Here's the gist -

You set three speedlights up in various locations on your shoot - you tell your D80 that you are going to trigger the flashes with light, but the D80 flash shouldn't be a part of the exposure - no prob.

You shoot the first exposure and realize the background needs more light, and the left side could use less light.

On the back of your camera you increase the background light by 2 stops and decrease the left flash by one stop and shoot again. Even if the flashes are 50 feet away this works, around corners, it's just amazing. No running over to reset the flashes, you do it from where you stand.

The camera sends out the info to the flashes in a preflash, looks at ambient light, fires the flashes as you just set them, and then figures out the exposure through the lens and makes an amazing photo. I shoot in A mode with no compensation of any kind except through the flash interface, and just get amazing results.

Maybe I should start my own thread for the speedlight fan club...

Sorry, no hijack intended -

I'd recommend the D80 if this lighting scenario seems cool to you in any way...

11/28/2006 02:56:23 AM · #13
Originally posted by digitalknight:


I'd recommend the D80 if this lighting scenario seems cool to you in any way...

... and if you have a bazillion dollars to spend in flashes! (j/k :P )
11/28/2006 07:30:09 AM · #14
The SB-800 Speedlight is an awesome unit. I've been using one for the past couple of years and really like what it adds. It is a great compliment to any Nikon setup.

As to the original question: get the best camera you can afford. I wouldnt count out the D70s either. I've used one of those along with the d100, 200 and now my D2Xs. The 70 beats the D100 hands down. Not sure how good the new rigs are - D50,80,etc, but it seems that Nikon has made a lot of improvements to the lineup with its newer models.

my 2 cents.
11/28/2006 11:11:11 AM · #15
Your decision making is limited by speculation at this time. Wait for a locally available D40, get your hands around it, check the functions and operation. And then set it down to compare a D50 or D70 or D80, etc. Talk with local store pros. Come back again to reassess. Your enthusiam will be nurtured by knowldge.
I just picked a D80 - up from Coolpix S1 - based on attending Nikon School Introduction to DSLR, handling the sample cameras there (D50, D200, D70, etc.), looking at prints from all the cameras (all more than satisfactory) and a long view of utilizinng the Speedlight Commander built in to the D80. Otherwise a D50 would have been quite satisfactory. My wife, novice to photography, much like myself, is catching the intrigue after accompanying me on forays through the woods for nature photography. Moving from "Can you get this picture?" to looking through the viewfinder to get a feel for framing - "This is what I how I see it" - to image processing - "Can you change this to..?" - she has reserved first option on the D40 coming in December to a local photo store. Hope this is helpful. Have fun!
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