A D300 Owner's View of a D60

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by manaheim, Jul 6, 2008.

  1. manaheim

    manaheim Jedi Bunnywabbit Staff Member Supporting Member

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    So I've been telling my mom for eons now to get a D80. My mom being my mom, she basically shunned my advice and went and picked up a D60. I'm fairly annoyed at her, and I already saw a situation where picking up the "lesser camera" bit her in the arse, but I have to say that all in all, I'm pretty impressed with the device.

    It is totally geared towards a person who is making a transition from a point and shoot camera to a DSLR, and for my mom this is basically perfect. The D80 does this too, but it does a bit less of the rather obvious handholding that the D60 does. For someone making this transition, this is great. For someone who just can't swing buying a D200 but knows what they are doing, it might be pretty annoying... though you can turn off/not use/get around most of what it's trying to do for you with a bit of effort.

    Off the top of my head, the biggest drawbacks I see in this thing are:
    1. Only three focus points! GOD that was annoying. (I also couldn't quite figure out in my brief attempts at how to turn off the auto-point selection, but I assume there is a way to do that I just didn't find)
    2. The inability to use any lens that requires an on-camera focus motor. (Same problem you encounter with many of these sub-bodies)
    3. Doesn't have a front dial for adjustment... aperature requires and awkward button press+turn the shutter dial movement that I found immensely annoying.
    Other than that, really, I was fairly impressed. The image quality was good, the response time was about the same as my aging (but still viable) D100, build quality was fine, etc.

    I still think she should have bought the D80, but she's happy with it, so whatever works. At least I finally got her to get rid of the Sony P+S with the scotch tape holding the thing together. :lol:
     
  2. TamiyaGuy

    TamiyaGuy No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I agree, if I was in her situation, I would've gone for the D80, or even the D40 that I have now.

    It's funny how people keep getting annoyed that the D40/D40x/D60 only have 3 focus points. I only ever use the middle one, and if I don't like the composition, I focus, then move the camera. Then again, I'm a bit of a noob, so ya :p.

    I do agree with you on the second point, though. If the D40 had an on-camera focusing motor, I'd be out buying a 50mm f/1.4 quick as a flash. But for still subjects, manual focusing is really easy. Just wait for the focus conformation dot in the viewfinder and bam. Mind you, your mom doesn't seem like the kind of person who wants to manual focus (no offence).

    Great view on the D60, and a great REview as well. I always wondered what the '60 would seem like to a higher-end camera user.
     
  3. pm63

    pm63 TPF Noob!

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    I have the D40, and the lack of focus points as well as the need for more buttons are indeed irritating.

    However, you can change it so that you manually select the focus point using the 4 way pad on the back of the body. I always keep it to this setting.
     
  4. Chewbecca

    Chewbecca TPF Noob!

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    I like my D60, but had I known what I know now when I bought it, I surely would have gone for at least a D80.

    But when I upgrade to a D300 (or, I'm not sure exactly WHAT body I'll go with), I'm going to look into IR conversion for my D60.
     
  5. Mav

    Mav TPF Noob!

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    If I'm in a situation where I need to be able to instantly compose, have an AF sensor grab something (anything) and then get a shot off an instant later, yes the 11 or 51 point AF systems on the other cameras are better. But for casual shooting I actually find the 3-point system "refreshingly simple" LOL. And I can manually navigate through 3 points way easier than 11 points. I've never shot with a D300 besides a quick handling and a few test shots at Best Buy, but geez, 51 points?? How many do you need? Back in the day cameras only had one, or none. If you can't compose the way you want, just get as close as you can, hit the AE-L/AF-L button to hold exposure and focus, recompose, and shoot. Very easy. :) And you change focus mode by hitting the menu button and scrolling to the little box below AF-A in this photo.

    http://press.nikonusa.com/gallery/nikon/Digital_SLR/D60/images/D60_LCD_Info_4.jpg

    There's actually two or three different ways to get to the rear info display. The camera remembers what adjustment you made last with each button. So if you set the buttons up right, it's like having THREE function buttons! This is part of why I say I like the way the 40/40x/60 drives and find it easier to use and adjust better than my D80 which lacks all this, and only has a single function button. I find the D80 far more cumbersome and annoying to adjust, but the D40 is great. You can also make full stop ISO adjustments on the D40/40x/60 which I love, but only third stops on the D80 which is tedious and annoynig for the times when the Auto ISO programmability isn't flexible enough for your needs.

    And yes, you CAN use non AF-S/AF-I lenses. :)

    Two quick samples: 10.5mm fisheye | 50mm f/1.4D

    My wife and I are starting to plan a little getaway to the Far East for a week in October, and I might bring just my D40 alone along with the 10.5 fish, and Tokina 11-16, and one or two other lenses, neither of which autofocus on the D40. No big deal to me. Just select an AF point to use, move the focus ring yourself, and watch for the electronic focus assist confirmation dot in the lower left for when you're in focus. Done! :)


    And you only need to hit the EV button + wheel to adjust the aperture in MANUAL mode. I'll admit that the D40 or any single-wheeled Nikon really isn't setup all that well for manual shooting. In Program mode spinning the control wheel gets you to Program Shift. In Shutter it adjust shutter, in Aperture Priority it adjusts aperture. Only in manual mode do you have to hit the EV comp + wheel for aperture control, and then you loose the ability to use exposure compensation short of going into the menus if you happen to be using Auto ISO as well. Except for flash shooting, I never use my D40 in manual mode because of this. But then some of those modes work better IMO on the D40 because you can do quick and painless full stop ISO adjustments which the D80 can't do.


    Anyways I'm rambling. :mrgreen:


    I will say that my wife HATES handling my D80 though, and that the size and feel of the D40/40x/60 cameras is far better for her. She can actually hold the camera reasonably well and doesn't have to reach around it like she does on the D80. She has small hands, as do many others of the "female species". :greenpbl: Camera handling is paramount. If you can't hold the camera well and get to controls easily you're never really going to like using it. I actually have trouble hand holding my D40 well because my hands are too big, but that all goes away when I put a nice BEEFY lens on it like the 17-55 f/2.8. Then I end up holding the lens more and the camera less, and it actually handles and balances a lot better for me that way.
     
  6. iflynething

    iflynething TPF Noob!

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    That's BONZO BONZO man

    ~Michael~
     
  7. epp_b

    epp_b No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I have never found this to be annoying. I have, in fact, found it to force me to be more precise with focusing. I somehow imagine more focus points just getting in the way.

    Actually, non AF-S/I lenses work just fine, they just don't AF, but I assume this is what you were trying to say.

    I don't find it at all awkward.
     

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