Returning to photography and the forum.. need advice.


Been spending a lot of time on here!
Sep 11, 2010
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Western New York
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Alright guys, I'm an old member here, haven't been active in quite some time as a couple years ago life situations forced me to sell off my camera gear in order to buy a new car. I've missed photography and the members here like crazy, and the hiatus has all but killed the progress I had made with getting a sports photography business started. Anyway, I'm glad to announce that my financial situation has improved. I'm now working full time as an EMT-Intermediate for a 911 ambulance company, and loving every second of it. So now that I had a little extra cash flow, I'm ready to pick up the crumbled pieces of my photography business/equipment collection and continue from where I left off.

I've was a Nikon shooter before, and I'm leaning that way again, but I'm keeping an open mind to other brands as well. I still have some basic equipment and accessories, but I have no camera bodies or lenses left. I currently have about $2k to spend, and I'm trying to get the most bang for my buck in a budget setup for shooting sports and concerts. I'm leaning towards a D7000 or 7100, along with a used Sigma 70-200 HSM II, which puts me right about at my budget. I shot alot of nighttime football/motocross and indoor sports so a modern body with good iso performance, and a fast lens are must haves, or else I'd just grab a D90 and some better glass for now. Mind you this is just to get me started. I plan to expand into a second body and more/better glass over the next year. I already have my tripod, monopod, camera bag, filters, flash unit/triggers, etc, so I won't really need to budget for accessories at this time.

This thread is mostly just to announce that I'm back, but I have a few questions as well:

Opinions on D7000 vs 7100 for my needs? Maybe a used D700?

Should I consider a different camera brand? I'm really liking the rumors of the canon 7d mkII, but not sure I want to jump ship for it. However if I'm going to, it needs to be now, before I'm invested in Nikon again.

Possible other lens reccomendations?

Any other advice?
Welcome back, Destin! I remember you and I'm glad to hear that things are better now!

I can't offer much in the way of advice for you, other than to say if you were smart enough to pick Nikon the first time, there's no reason to change that now. :lmao:

I love my D7000 and I've shot some soccer with it, not much else in the way of sports though.

I guess if I were you, given your budget, I'd be tempted to go with a USED D7000 and the lens for now, but I've heard good things about the 7100, so maybe you blow the budget on the newest model you can get, if you know you're going to keep it for a while.
Check this website out, you can compare dslrs from it. You can even compare nikon to cannon, and it helped me out a ton when i was making my first decision on what to buy.
Camera Comparison - Snapsort
Also, if its any help, I shoot with a nikon d3200 and all of these photos from my website were taken with it, so you can see how the low light performance is and what not, its also great with sports if you lookk at the sports page you can see that a camera had to be fast to get those shots :)
IanCookePhotography - Home
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I cannot see going to a Canon crop-body camera until canon can upgrade its sensor production capabilities from the outdated .5 micron process to .18 micron like Sony and Nikon and Pentax. I think the reason there's no 7D Mark II is that Canon cannot realize the needed improvements in sensor performance with their outdated manufacturing capabilities. Sure, on FF Canon is doing okay--as long as there is basically no underexposure...if there is underexposure and the photographer needs to "lift" any shadows, Canon has significant noise and banding problems--even with the 5D-III.

For low-light and sports at this time, on a budget of $2k, the D7100 makes the most sense, today. Why? Excellent images at up to ISO 4,000. Superb color depth at normal ISOs, and still Good color depth at elevated ISO levels. Excellent dynamic range. Pretty good camera for $1,200.
Im looking at getting a D7100 soon. It has gotten great reviews. I cant speak for canon models because i shoot nikon, but you might consider a used d600, used d700, or a d7100. FF is never a bad way to go, but everything i have read on the d7100 touts it as a very capable camera.
I'm definitely leaning strongly towards the D7100. Went to my local camera shop and played with one lastnight, and really like the feel of it. Forgot my memory card to take a few high iso sample shots, but from what I've seen, I'm not too worried about it's low light capabilities.

Thank you all for the advice so far!

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