buying first dSLR

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by colette, Jan 14, 2009.

  1. colette

    colette TPF Noob!

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    I'm looking to buy my first digital SLR camera. I've done so much research and I'm still feeling confused. I would like a Nikon but I'm not sure which one... I'm thinking D60 or D80....

    I'd really like some advice on what to do. Buy new or used?? (like ebay) Buy a camera/lens package deal or buy seperate?? Where's the best place to buy lenses?? How do I know which lens to get?? I'll be taking mostly portraits and other picts of people... not so much nature/landscapes/action etc...

    Any advice is greatly appreciated! Thanks!
     
  2. Samanax

    Samanax TPF Noob!

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    What kind of budget are you working with?

    Either Nikon will suit your needs for now. Concentrate on getting good lenses.
     
  3. NateS

    NateS TPF Noob!

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    D80 would be my recommendation unless you don't mind manually focusing. 50mm f1.8 is a must have in my opinion for it's image quality to price "ratio". However that lens won't autofocus on a D60 but will on a D80. There are also other lenses out there like the Sigma 70-300 APO DG Macro (which I use) that is a very good lens for a small budget and again won't autofocus on the D60 but will on D80. Most say it doesn't matter since you wouldn't autofocus the macro anyway, but I do a lot with great results. (Edit: Nevermind on this one...I see that they have an HSM version of the Sigma now which will AF with the D60).

    It all depends on what you plan to do though. If you only plan on buying some kit lenses then the D60 would be great. There are even some really good lenses that will autofocus but they cost more (but you might want them regardless)....like the Sigma 18-50 f2.8 HSM or even the Tamron 17-50 f2.8 has a built in motor now.

    The Nikon 70-300 VR will also focus on the D60, but it's more than twice the cost of the Sigma (granted it's twice as good wide open probably).

    Best bet is to search around and find people's likes and dislikes about both. Go to google and search D60 vs D80 and find some comparisons and go to the store and play with both. The menu/buttons on the D80 for changing things on the fly is much better than the D60 as well (in my opinion at least) but these are things you need to go play with to discover for yourself.
     
  4. colette

    colette TPF Noob!

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    If possible, I'd like to not exceed $1,000 to get me going. Can I get my camera and a good lens for less than that?
     
  5. DavidElliot

    DavidElliot TPF Noob!

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    D80 body goes for $537 on Adorama
    the nifty fifty usually goes for a little over $100
    and as for a walk around lens you could use the kit lens or get a third party lens such as tamron or sigma for around $300
     
  6. NateS

    NateS TPF Noob!

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    Yup....you just need to decide what you want. D60 or even D40 with the Tamron 17-50 f2.8 would be a really nice setup for right at your 1000 mark or right under. Would be much better than the kit lens. D80 with the Tamron would also come in around your budget. You seriously need to go play with them in the store though. The D60 requires you to go through the menu to change things such as ISO, WB, shooting mode, etc..... whereas the D80 has dedicated buttons to do that. That single feature alone would cause me to buy the D80 over the D40/D60.
     
  7. NateS

    NateS TPF Noob!

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    Good luck....I've been searching for a used Tamron 17-50 f2.8 for weeks and no luck....too good of a lens and I guess people only sell them when upgrading to the 17-55. However even new it's only $400. So $537+$400 is $937 which leaves you enough money to buy a decent bag to "protect" it in.

    You could also buy a D90 and 50mm f1.8. I've used the 50mm f1.8 as my main lens for about a year and only rarely needed to mount my 18-55 kit lens. You could get by on the D90 and 50mm f1.8 for awhile then when you save up some more get the Tamron 17-50 f2.8. Just another thought because if you truly get into this hobby then 6 months down the road you may wish you had waited and gotten the D90. Then again if your interest in the hobby fades you may regret spending the extra for the D90.
     

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