Upgrade my camera, or my glass?

Cyotheking

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Hey there, right now I am having a hard time deciding if I should upgrade my Nikon D70 to a Nikon D7100 or if I should upgrade my glass.

My current glass is:
Tamron 70-300mm f/4-5.6 (Really disappointed with this lens)
Nikkor 50mm f/1.8D
Nikon 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5 (Just the kit lens)
Sigma 70-200mm f/4-5.6 (Also quite disappointed with this)

I can't decide because right now I feel like the ISO limit of 1600 on the D70 is hindering a lot of my low stuff...but I feel like the glass is hindering the quality of my photos. What would you recommend I do? And if you recommend glass, could you point me in the direction of a good telephoto lens?

Thanks in advance!
 

ronlane

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Typically on here you will get the response to upgrade glass first, unless there is something with the body that is holding you back. In your case, you mention that the ISO on the body is causing you problems. I've heard nothing but good about the 7100 (from reading on here), so I may be worth the time and money to upgrade the body and then see where the glass you have will get you at that point.

Looking at your lenses, the only fast glass you have is the 50mm, how does it do in low light on that body?

Others will no doubt be along in a bit to tell you otherwise.
 
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Cyotheking

Cyotheking

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DBA

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Tamron 70-300mm f/4-5.6 (Really disappointed with this lens)
Sigma 70-200mm f/4-5.6 (Also quite disappointed with this)
Sell those two and get a Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 VR 1 (or 2).
 
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Cyotheking

Cyotheking

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Tamron 70-300mm f/4-5.6 (Really disappointed with this lens)
Sigma 70-200mm f/4-5.6 (Also quite disappointed with this)
Sell those two and get a Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 VR 1 (or 2).

Hmm...So I should just skip something like the Nikon 55-200mm f/4-5.6 and jump straight to the bigger brother?
 

goodguy

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You are gonna get different responses from everybody here, you will need to decide for yourself and go for it.
I wouldnt think twice and get the new D7100.
Oh wait thats what I did, I got my D7100 only about a week ago, awesome camera and you will LOVE it.
The D70 was good for its time but its old technology, time to move on and the D7100 is what you need.

For your long zoom you mentioned you have the 70-300mm
I assume its the non VR lens.
I can tell you from my own experience I have the VR version of this lens and for its price its an amazing lens, very sharp and the VR is very effective.
Got its used for 280$ and from what I heard its much better then its older non VR brothers.
 

DBA

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Tamron 70-300mm f/4-5.6 (Really disappointed with this lens)
Sigma 70-200mm f/4-5.6 (Also quite disappointed with this)
Sell those two and get a Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 VR 1 (or 2).

Hmm...So I should just skip something like the Nikon 55-200mm f/4-5.6 and jump straight to the bigger brother?
I went from a 55-200mm kit lens on a D5100 to a 70-200mm f/2.8 VR2 (still on the D5100). Don't underestimate what a quality lens can bring to the table. Jumping up to a fast glass did more to the quality of my photos then switching from a crop to full frame (D600) body.
 

Aloicious

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Tamron 70-300mm f/4-5.6 (Really disappointed with this lens)
Sigma 70-200mm f/4-5.6 (Also quite disappointed with this)
Sell those two and get a Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 VR 1 (or 2).

Hmm...So I should just skip something like the Nikon 55-200mm f/4-5.6 and jump straight to the bigger brother?

yes, the nikon will be similar to the tamron and sigma that you already aren't happy with, perhaps just slightly better in a few minor areas, but selling the ones you don't like now, and getting a 70-200 f2.8 will be a very very large benefit, wide open at 200mm, the 70-200 f2.8 will let in 4x more light than the 55-200 f4-5.6, and the optics will be better, it'll be built better, etc, etc. it would be very worth your time to sell the tamron and sigma, and save a little to get a 70-200 f2.8 VR1 or 2...

however, that being said, with a D70, a body upgrade would also certainly benefit you a good amount too.

you're at a place where either road will be a fairly large improvement, but if I had to recommend 1 or the other, I'd say go with a lens upgrade now, and start saving for a body upgrade in the future.
 

bratkinson

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I'm a Canon guy, but that really doesn't matter...

I'm a little puzzled about the lenses you have now. The Tamron and the Sigma both cover 70-200mm focal range but the same apertures. I'm guessing you bought the Tammy for a little added reach. But then you kept the Sigma? To me, it doesn't make sense. But then, I'm considering an f4.5-5.6 70-300 myself, but that's in addtion to a relatively fast f2.8 80-200 I already have. I'm thinking I'd have up to 300 for added reach in better lighting, but in low light, it would be problematic, so I'd use the 2.8 for low light shooting.

In your situation, I'd probably sell both the Tamron and the Sigma to fund a Nikon 70-200 f2.8 VR.... Why? As you're not happy with those lenses, probably because in low light they just don't cut it without a flash, getting something that will do better in the low light, AND improved image quality seems like an obvious solution to me. The sale of the two lenses can help offset the cost of the new Nikon lens as well.

And there's nothing wrong with buying a used Nikon lens from a reputable dealer such as B&H and Adorama (both advertisers on this website). LensRentals.com, another very reputable dealer, sells their used lenses as well and has just launched a new website for selling them (I forget the name). My next lens is most likely going to come from one of those three places. I have 2 high quality used lenses in my case and will likely add more in the future.

As for upgrading your D70, perhaps that would be your next step. But after getting a good f2.8 70-200, I wouldn't be surprised if your next step would be an f2.8 24-70 to replace the 18-70 you now have.
 
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Cyotheking

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I'm guessing you bought the Tammy for a little added reach. But then you kept the Sigma? To me, it doesn't make sense.

I originally had the Sigma given to me from my mom. And then I bought the Tamron for extra reach and to get rid of the AWFUL lens creaping on the Sigma.
 

SCraig

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I'm of the opinion that upgrading your camera first would make more sense. The D70 is a 6mp body introduced in 2004, and there have been quantum leaps in camera technology since then. I don't think you could possibly find one area in which a D70 would perform as well as a more modern body.

You might also find that it isn't the lenses that you dislike but how they work with the D70. Pairing them with a more modern body might make all the difference with them.
 

Solarflare

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I can't decide because right now I feel like the ISO limit of 1600 on the D70 is hindering a lot of my low stuff...but I feel like the glass is hindering the quality of my photos. What would you recommend I do?
Sell the lenses.

Get a D7000 and AF-S 55-200mm f4-5.6.

That should be inside your current budget.

The D7000 is already a very good camera. Only details have been improved in the D7100 - a little bit better sensor, a little bit better AF, a little bit better Metering, some gimmicks etc.

My own 55-200mm isnt so great at 200mm, but judging from what I read from others, this seems to be not normal.



Tamron 70-300mm f/4-5.6 (Really disappointed with this lens)
Sigma 70-200mm f/4-5.6 (Also quite disappointed with this)
Sell those two and get a Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 VR 1 (or 2).

Hmm...So I should just skip something like the Nikon 55-200mm f/4-5.6 and jump straight to the bigger brother?

The hierarchy of Nikon telelenses is like this:
- 55-200mm f/4-5.6 VR DX -- ca 200$
- 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6 VR DX -- ca 400$
- 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 VR -- ca 800$
- 70-200mm f/4 VR (new) -- ca 1500$
- 70-200mm f/2.8 VR -- ca 2500$
 

SCraig

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... My own 55-200mm isnt so great at 200mm, but judging from what I read from others, this seems to be not normal.
Yours is the same as my experience with that lens. I have one to and have never liked the results I get from it.
 

DBA

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Yours is the same as my experience with that lens. I have one to and have never liked the results I get from it.
/offtopic

Just checked out the link in your sig, you're right I wasn't expecting Tennessee to be what it actually was. Spent last week shooting at Loretta Lynn's ranch for the Amateur National Motocross Championship. First time in Tennessee as an adult, wasn't expecting that [beautiful] terrain.
 

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