guide me oh photo masters.. which body demands my purchase? d90 or d300?

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by austriker, Dec 2, 2009.

  1. austriker

    austriker TPF Noob!

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    hi there,
    so a few months ago i was asking lens (sigma 70-200 f/2.8) vs new body.. i have made a decision and i realize i am thinking contrary to the popular notion of lens > body. i am thinking new body... however i cannot decide d90 or d300.. i have spent hours researching the differences on the internet and know what the reviewers think.. for example the IQ and ISO are very similar..

    comparison (advantages of d300):

    -6 FPS over 4.5 FPS of d90
    i like to shoot sports, would this be a big enough difference?

    -hard metal alloy body over plastic body which gives advantages of slightly weather proof and being rated to 150k shutter acutations where d90 is only rated to 100k. this is helpful and rather self-explanatory.

    -more advanced AF in d300 with 51 AF points (d90=11)
    again, how much of a difference would this make for sports? i am not a pro but like it and want to become better as i practice more. also how beneficial is this?

    -d300 has no preset control buttons
    this really is an advantage that i like (no technical adv.) b/c i think those presets are annoying. also one of my pet peeves are people who buy really nice DSLRs and then only use AUTO and would question you when you say shutter speed, iso or fstop. along these same lines is the concept of video...

    -the d300 has no video
    i do not really like the idea of video as i try and stay old school (ironic, shooting digital lol). although i know that i might regret it in the future if i dont get video just for those 'certain' times where it would be cool..


    as far as my style is concerned, i shoot sports, urban photos, and a little journalism. you can check out my flickr stream in my sig. i am still figuring what exactly i want to shoot. it is a hobby and so im not a pro or imagine becoming a pro..

    the reason i am posting here is that i am looking for what fellow photographers think.. sorry for the massive essay i just want to fully explain myself to get more accurate responses..

    also im looking for some responses from people who do shoot sports: is the d300 worth the price difference? like how helpful are the faster AF, more AF points and faster FPS?
     
  2. Eco

    Eco TPF Noob!

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    Go with the 90 and but aside the remainder of the money for a full frame camera that you will want down the road.
     
  3. Atlas77

    Atlas77 TPF Noob!

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    This might influence your decision.

    your right, the features you listed of the D300 are exactly what makes it much better, but the real question is what do you need? If you go D90 you can save money for glass, and as you said lens > body. The D300 is faster for your sports needs and yes, 6 fps will make a difference. It will be even better if you shoot in bad conditions, because of the sealing. The downside is it is much heavier. I was set on saying go D300! Until you said this:

    If you havent shot with a DSLR/Nikon DSLR before and it is purley a hobby I say go D90, starting out D300 would take a while to get the hang of. Its not as easy as it seems if this is your first camera. (if this isnt your first Nikon dslr, the D300 will be great!)

    The easy way to decide is to go into the shop and compare both (is the D300 still in stores?) See which one you like better. See what is easier for you and what feels good. The upsides to a D90 would be lighter, easier to shoot for a beginner, and you can spend more money on good glass instead of jumping on the D300.

    And you can always upgrade bodies later. ;)

    Good luck.
     
  4. austriker

    austriker TPF Noob!

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    first off thanks for your help! both of you! i probably should have said that i have been shooting for a few years.. and have owned my d40 for about one year. i have gained a lot of knowledge about the camera and feel let down the d40's lack of external button controls.. i feel that i have knowledge beyond a normal beginner, even if my work is still not as great as id like..
    i actually borrowed my cousin's d90 over t-giving break and really enjoyed it. but im just not sure if the d300 is worth the extra $400..

    the problem is that the d300 is not in stores.. i have looked and it has been replaced by the 300s in most stores..
     
  5. Atlas77

    Atlas77 TPF Noob!

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    Well you should of said you have prior experience! :lol:

    Is it worth the extra 400$? Yes, it has weather sealing, its faster, more Af points. (pretty much everything you said in your first post)

    But keep in mind, 400$ is enough for a good lens. What kit are you running with the D40? Do you plan up upgrading body or getting a lens or two?

    Have you thought about the D300s??

    Oh and no problem! I like to help. :lol:
     
  6. IgsEMT

    IgsEMT No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Might be a bit slow, although I didn't find it to be a huge issue.

    Built is important and take into account what will you be shooting and under what condition.

    I use center focus and recompose. Sports or weddings, YET to fail me.

    I love that option on D90. ISO, Shutter, Aperture, WB aren't the only things to change. Often, while shooting I change picture profiles to various presets that I created.

    Video, is a nice feature but out of 10,000+ frames i have on D90, I probably shot under 10mins of video. It's a cute feature but if shooting video - use a video camera. :)

    also im looking for some responses from people who do shoot sports: is the d300 worth the price difference? like how helpful are the faster AF, more AF points and faster FPS?
    I use D300 only when shooting out of studio. Thus my D90 is the back up and works great. The biggest differences in quality b/n the two that i've seen is D300 is a bit sharper then d90, thus on d90, I have boosted sharpness - and it works GREAT. Price wise, I think is a $300 difference and that is something only you can justify. Personally, I'm saving for Fx. Until then, my home shots will be with d90 and studio-related will be d300.
     
  7. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    The D300/D300s is not a pro camera. Pro sports shooters use the D3/D3s, for the AF module and ISO performance.

    The D300/D300s has the DX portion of the D3/D3s AF module, so you're getting top-of-the-line AF performance for a fraction of the cost of the D300/D300s.

    I have a side business that shoots local sports. I have 2 paid shooters and I provide each shooter 2 D90 rigs. Each D90 has the MB-D80 vertical grip. One body has a Sigma 150-500 mm lens and is on a monopod. The other body has a Nikon 24-85 mounted.

    If I were the one shooting the sports I'd have at least a D300s for the video.

    In the studio I upgraded from a D300 to the a D300s. Video clips are selling better than I hoped and I learned that from using the D90's to shoot sports.
     
  8. Atlas77

    Atlas77 TPF Noob!

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    Double post!

    I dug up two videos for you,





    Im not sure how helpful the second one will be, its pretty much rewording all the things you said in the original post. :lol:
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 11, 2014
  9. kundalini

    kundalini Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    With the MB-D10 grip, you're talking 8fps burst rate. For sports shooting it could be the difference of getting the athlete's eyes wide open in the heat of battle rather than closed or squinting.

    Nuff said.

    I don't know, but can the D90 3D track and following the subject by color? You can also set for quicker acquisition by setting the AF points to 21 or 9. This would be handy for sport shooting.

    Shooting modes? Manual + Aperature & Shutter priority modes is all you should be concerned with.

    When Nikon ups the ante for video, I might be interested, but if I want video, I shoot with a video camera...... which is seldom to none.





    There's a D40 in his quiver.

    The transition and learning curve is not a tremendous. You'll just get a more intuitive menu and button layout..... probably with either choice.

    I'm still an advocate of glass before ass. But sometimes the time is right to upgrade the body. I got most of my glass while having only the D80. I think I've only bought 2, maybe 3, lenses out of the 11 since upgrading bodies. D80>D300>D700. The 14-24mm is still on the radar. I'm such a lens whore. :lol:
     
  10. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    I shot newspaper sports assignments for two years this decade, using the Nikon D1h and then the Nikon D2x, both of which have very strong "torquey" AF motors in-body, and had what were at the time, top-line professional AF systems. Both of those features were/are very helpful with some of the fast prime lenses like the 85/1.4 and 105 and 135mm f/2 primes.

    I personally came to really like the D2x's group dynamic AF autofocusing for rapidly-changing focusing subjects, where a single,central AF point is simply the WRONG choice. As in for example, pole vaulting and long jump/triple jump, where the subject, properly framed in in the TOP 1/3 of the viewfinder area,and where the subject is moving, quite dynamically.

    One of the most-effective ways to boost your hit rate on sports shots is to use an AF-S focusing, pro-grade lens, like the 70-200 AF-S VR-G. The reason the "pro" sports bodies have fast firing rates is not to machine-gun, but to speed up the AF system's acquisition of data,and to supply the lens with focusing commands more often. An AF camera can autofocus ONLY with the mirror in the down position. The more times per second the mirror is down in viewing position, the more times per second AF and tracking data can be collected, processed, and delivered to the lens. I think the D300 or D300s with battery pack and beefier batteries would be a better body with a Sigma 70-200 lens for the trickiest sports. Some sports are "easy", really, like some of the field sports where athletes are all at a fair distance, or where the action stays in one place pretty much for periods, like college wrestling for example. Other sports have some tough events,and some easy events; in track and field the high jump is dead-easy---the bar is *THE* spot, but in long jump/triple jump, the athlete is coming at you and goes from middle of the frame to the very top of the frame when in the air and covers 6-7 meters during roughly one and a half seconds in the air,and the landing, when the sand flies, lasts about 1/10 second.

    Youth soccer is a lot slower-moving than college women's soccer, for example. On some events, at 8 fps, you can get an occasional second frame that's usable and good; at slower speeds like 4.5 fps, there is only one,single good frame per play in many sports. The faster-reacting cameras, not the faster firing rate cameras, make precise timing shots like ball-on-bat and soccer header shots easier to get--there is no motor-driving, there is only the single,precise moment,and the shorter shutter lag times and the faster mirror return times and the faster AF performance make really tricky timing shots easier to get,reliably, day in and day out. That is why the professional Canon 1D and Nikon D3 series bodies are popular with top shooters--the cameras are fast in all aspects: single shot AF acquisition, firing rate, shutter lag time, and mirror blackout time. The D300s is said to have slightly tweaked AF algorithms that make it focus a slight bit faster than the D300, but the D700 and D3 series both focus faster than the D300 series.

    I'm not sure on the D90 or D300, but on the D2-series, if you turn the LCD image review OFF, it shaves something like 18 milliseconds off of the shutter release lag time, making the camera just that little extra bit quicker to actually shoot a frame.
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2009
  11. IgsEMT

    IgsEMT No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    KmH
    I'd disagree with you disqualifying it from pros. Lots of pros who don't want bricks use D300. At the time of the release of D300, D700 wasn't available thus. Not everyone likes tanks. I liked working with one, just can't image my self using one on daily bases.

    Derrel
    Its like shooting film :)~
    :lmao:
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2009
  12. Atlas77

    Atlas77 TPF Noob!

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    Theres no such thing as "pro" cameras, only pro photographers. :lol:

    Heck, a pro photographer can use any camera they like, even a D3000 (if they were crazy).

    Only Joking.
     

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