DX to FX suggestions requested


TPF Noob!
Sep 12, 2005
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New on this forum, thank you for your time...

Question: if you had this type of lens collection and wanted to maximize use without buying unneeded tech, what model FX-sensor body would you shop for on the used/refurb market?

Inherited a set of lenses used on an F4 by my dad in the 90s. He halfheartedly went digital with a D80 several years ago. I upgraded to a 7100 and added a few things.

Now I have a 7100 body and the following Nikkor lenses:
20mm f/2.8D, 28mm f/1.8G, 40mm f/2.8G micro, 50mm f/1.4G, 105mm f/2.8 micro, 80-200mm f/2.8ED.

If you consider the equivalent angle of view, going from DX to FX essentially keeps the same lineup, adding a nice wide 20mm prime, making the tele-zoom a lot more useful and enjoying the full potential of the 50mm 1.4.

My thought is that with the right FX body, the 28, 50, and 80-200 would make an incredible setup that would fit in a small bag like a TT Retro 7.

Would you upgrade to FX, and if you really needed to do it efficiently, what models would you be looking at? I shoot in manual 90% of the time, don't need crazy buffer space, but fast AF on the Gs is key.
I'd look at the D700, D600, D610 for low price and value, as well as a half-height body that's reasonably compact and also light in weight. For full-sized pro Nikons I'd look at the D3x, D3s, and D3. For a high-MP count body, the D800 is probably the leader in value, with the D800e right on its heels. For a compact all-arounder, I'd look to a refurbed or used D750, but the "value" proposition on it is maybe not as high as with the D600,D610, and D800 bodies. If you like the look of it, the Df really does have impressive image quality at higher ISO levels, due to the big pixels and 16-MP sensor size.

I did up-size to FX from APS-C years ago, in 2006. This week I had occasion to use a friend's D5000 and when I popped my 85/1.8 on there, it was like, "Whoa....tiny viewfinder...lens is wayyy too long!" For me, the FX does two things: bigger viewfinder image, so it's easier to see with and second, the way the primes work is just better, handier, more in tune with the real world, on FX with the older legacy lengths like 20,28,50,105, and also 85 and 70-200 or 80-200 zooms.

Case example I often site: with APS-C, and 85mm prime, to get an 8.5 foot tall frame of say,m a standing couple at a wedding, with APS-C you need to be right about 35 feet back; with the same lens on FX, to get the same image height, you stand 20 feet away. This is what I mean by the real world. Indoors, in many rooms, an 85mm is almost useless on APS-C for anything except tight headshots...
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I agree with Derrel. From your description, a new D610 would make a lot of sense, maybe a DF as well, if you like the camera retro control style. For used bodies, the D700 or the D3 family would make a lot of sense as well.

Good luck. You have fine lenses and you will enjoy the FX upgrade, whichever camera you buy.
D700's on ebay are selling for under $800 right now and that's with spare batteries and the OEM grip. Good deals for a Pro 12mp FX camera.

Personally I have a d600, but wouldn't mind having the D750 for it's improvements all around. I came from a d7000 and had the issues that Derrel mentions above. And the FX sensor is also better at the extremes thus making photography easier when the lighting isn't perfect.
I can recomment the D750. I tolerated the D600 because that was the best option for me at the time, but I really love the D750. It has so many small improvements over the D600 - the best AF Nikon currently offers, a tiltable screen, magnification of the AF point in both lifeview and image review, better white balance (I often use OOC images now), etc.

Cant recomment the D600 or D610. At very least if thats your choice get a used D600 instead of a new D610. Its basically the same camera (except for really small details), its much cheaper, if there really is any issue with that shutter Nikon guarantees to fix it even outside warranty, and finally the D600 doesnt have this riddiculous behavior of enabling the monitor whenever one is selecting ISO (unfortuantely the D750 has inherited this stupid behavior from the D610).

Do NOT get a Df. Thats a poorly implemented, underperforming, unergonomic, highly overpriced retro camera. See for example the digitalrev review about it. Get a D810 if you really want to spend this much money. Or at very least know exactly what you're getting into.

To my best knowledge the D700 is an excellent deal now. For the longest time, it was same price as the D3, which just isnt right, since the D3 was the flagship of its time. The D700 is a classic camera, its better built than the D750 (which in turn is better built than the D6x0 cameras), and its a great allrounder. I'd probably still shoot with it had I gotten one back then.

Obviously get rid of the 40mm, its a DX lens and you already have macro lens.
Wonderful advice, thank you. My internet rummaging had uncovered similar advice, but not so well-reasoned and well-put. Looking forward to participating more in the forum...

The 'real-world' analogy for the FX sensor size/lens use really hit home, I appreciated that explanation very much. The fact I can't get any wider than 30mm on a DX body, or the fact I need to keep moving BACK (not IN) to get shots, has been frustrating.

A note about that DX 40mm, its sounds like throwaway garbage, but its the most fun I've had with a new lens purchase, ever. Perfect angle for pets, kids and couples, with a close focus ability for interesting walk-around shots. So light and cheap, I just wrapped mine up in electric tape and I carry it everywhere.
I know fx hasits advantage, but if you invested in a wide angle such as a sigma 10-20 f3.5 or indeed a nikon 10-24mm you'd have a hell of a dx kit
The AF 20mm 2.8D is sweet on FX!!!! It's like having a 13mm on DX. It's pretty wide, and great for landscapes.
I had the 80-200 recently and FX loves it as well.
I was in the same position. I have been using the D-7100 for a while but all the lenses I bought were all FX. I just jumped on the D-800 and do not regret it one bit. I do not shoot action and did not need the fps that some of the other models have. For landscape and portrait, the D-800 fits my needs.

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