Yet another: which d-slr to choose question

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by VaE39, Jul 30, 2007.

  1. VaE39

    VaE39 TPF Noob!

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    I know this has been brought up numerous times and I've asked at least 3 questions about it, but this is a pretty big decision that I don't want to regret in the long wrong. I don't want to say to myself "Oh I shouldn't have wasted my money on it" or "Oh I wish I got that model". So far, TPF has helped me narrow a lot of choices down and I want to be 100% before I go out and start this. I narrowed it down to Nikon due to the fact that I like the brand and a few family and friends have Nikons as well (might as well stay in the family). I was going to go with the D40 but the whole AF thing was a turn off. So then I was going to get the D80 but the price is just a bit high for me to just go and buy it like that. Now, I'm tied with getting a D80 or just getting a used D50. What do you guys think? Also, where could I even get a used D50? I don't think I saw it on bhphotovideo.com. Thanks for the help again everyone. Sorry for the newb questions
     
  2. three_eyed_otter

    three_eyed_otter TPF Noob!

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    47% (23 lenses) of Nikons current lens line can be used w/the D40 (x). Although you will be left w/out being able to AF w/a few primes lenses, Nikon has made sure that you are well covered in other areas.

    have a good one
    3Eo
     
  3. ANDS!

    ANDS! No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Theres nothing that says you CANT use the lenses that lack AF - just that unless you've been manually adjusting cameras, doing so on the non-AF lenses might be more trouble than its worth. I personally wouldnt mind getting a D40 if thats what I had the budget for - it will take great pictures. However the design of the BODY and access to camera features is what makes me want the D80 over the D40. I don't know what out-of-camera advantages the D40 has over the D50, but I would check on that before making a final decision. However, if you dont care about going into the camera to change settings and not being able to do it on the fly - go with the D50. The D40, I believe, allows you to change this without going into a menu, it just has all that information on the rear lcd panel. Again, personal choice.

    Also be aware that the D40 only has three focus areas. For the average user, no problemo, but you never know.

    Also check out the accessory limitations (if any exist). I know the D50 is limited as far as lighting-settings is concerned, just don't know how. But
     
  4. spyder

    spyder TPF Noob!

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    i have a d50 and love it. i cant compare it with the d40 because i have never even seen one in person. the d40 is the newer one and you wouldnt have to search for a good source to buy a used camera from (funny this came up, i am selling my d50). the lense hadicap the d40 is a bit of a minus but unless you are planning on buying more lenses, you may never run into that problem. assess your needs before the purchase, they are both great cameras
     
  5. panocho

    panocho TPF Noob!

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    Why not a D70? You don't mention that and it might be a nice option somehow between the D50 and the D80. A used D70 is usually not much more expensive than a used D50.

    Anyway, I recommend you writing down all the pros and cons of each model (ALL of them, including price, body design, features, etc) and after forget about the ones that don't apply much to you (this usually happens and tends to be easily ignored: to wrongly take into consideration advantages than one won't really benefit from, regardless of how great those advantages may be), see which model wins the comparison. That way you not only will have a visual "decision" but also, and what is far more important, in the way of doing the comparison you will get to know enough each camera as to naturrally for the decision to pop up itself.

    well... at least this works for me!
     
  6. VaE39

    VaE39 TPF Noob!

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    Thanks everyone. The D70 was on the list too. I think I'll take that advice and write down a list just so I can visualize what I'm actually liking and not liking with each camera.
     
  7. BAB

    BAB TPF Noob!

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    If you are really serious about making the "right choice", I would reconsider how you arrived at the choices that you are considering. Not that they are bad choices, far from it, as all the cameras that you are considering are very capable. You state however that Nikon is what a few family and friends have. If this is how you have arrived at your choices, you may be in for dissappointment. What may be right for your family and friends, may not be right for you. You really need to first understand how you plan to use the camera, what your photography goals are. Then do a comparison of various camera offerings in your price range to determine which cameras are most likely to work best for you based on the specs and what each can do. Then a visit to a camera store that stocks the various models, to actually handle them, hopefully side by side to determine which feels most natural and best in your hands.
     
  8. VaE39

    VaE39 TPF Noob!

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    Well I have been looking at various cameras and brands. I didn't use the reason of "my family has it" to arrive to my conclusion of the brand. I've always liked the nikon brand. I've held the d40, d50, d70, d80 and other brands like canon as well. I take pictures a lot but with a point and shoot, I take pictures like scenery on vacations, to portraits of friends and family. I even like abstract photography as well. For the most part i'll be using it for portraits and landscapes. I work at a camera store so I've used them all and have taken pictures with all of them. I plan on upgraded the lenses eventually so thats how I arrived to the conclusion that the D40 wouldn't be the best bet. But for now, I'm gonna write down the pros and cons
     
  9. ANDS!

    ANDS! No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    If you plan on UPGRADING lenses, the D40 is fine. If this is a hobby for you, and you really dont need the utility of the D80, go ahead and get it. You know there will be a sellers market if you DO decided to upgrade in the future (and you should, I'm in love with my D80 - I sleep with it sometimes, lens cap. . .off). It's true that you can use older lenses (and the lack of non-primes is a bit of a pill but there are pretty sharp variable focal-lengths that make good portrait lenses too), but there are a MULTITUDE of first and third party lenses that cover the gamut of shooting, to where you realistically shouldn't miss the "older" lenses - the only minus I can think of, is the ability to find lenses on the cheap.
     
  10. VaE39

    VaE39 TPF Noob!

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    Say I go with the D40 due to its pretty price, what lenses would you recommend for portrait shots. I was looking at the 50mm1.8f lens for the D80 but that would have to be manual for the D40 correct? Any other good sharp/ portrait lenses?
     
  11. Mike_E

    Mike_E No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    If you have family and friends with Nikons then that is an issue in favor of Nikon! That is if they will let you use their lenses. ;)

    The prevailing wisdom is that the lens is of paramount importance and that the camera body is not important. In some regards this is true but one thing to consider is that most people can't afford to buy a new body whenever a new one comes out and will be using the one that they buy for a long time. Having said this, if you can stand it you might want to save up for the D80 and see if you can borrow or at least go with someone who has a Nikon already and thereby get some practice in the meantime.

    Just more to think about ;)

    mike

    As to the portrait lens, look for an 18-70mm f3.5-4. A really nice lens and is an S. You don't need a really low aperture number for most portraits because you can use lighting and that lens will also give you up to a 105mm effective range which is great for portraits.
     
  12. three_eyed_otter

    three_eyed_otter TPF Noob!

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    This is pretty much the reason I kept my D40x instead of returning it. My thought that I labored over for about 2 weeks was that "yes this is an inferior body, but it is a wonderful camera to learn photography on." Yes there are limitations but that just means I have to learn to be a better photographer. I want to buy really good lenses (e.g., f/2.8) as I progress in photography but I also would like to have a really nice camera body some day. So, I saw the D40x as my opportunity to really learn about photography, purchase some great glass, and then buy me a really good camera body. Essentially what I am saying is I chose good lenses and learning photography to be more important than a camera body.

    have a good one
    3Eo
     

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