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Old Jan 29, 2008, 12:13 PM   #1
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Hello all.

I am moving up from a Pentax K10D (nice camera that I am keeping), to a Nikon D300 (Better low-light capabilities), and I wondered if anyone could direct me to a 'reputable' online carrier for it. I have seen some outlets (1 Way Photo, for example) that are offering the D300 for insanely low prices - and something which seems to good to be true, probably isn't a good thing at all.

Also, what would be a good lens to start off with? I was thinking of the 18-200 VR (I think it is) for the camera. What do you think?

I am hoping that wherever I am directed to, will have this fantastic camera in stock.

Advanced thanks.

Blessings,
Nathan
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Old Jan 29, 2008, 12:28 PM   #2
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Anyone who is selling this camera at significantly less than $1700-$1800 (body only) is likely scamming you. They will advertise a low price and then tack on insanely expensive "options", like the battery, a charger, lens cap etc that should already come with the camera. Your also likely to get cheap memory or junk/worthless tripods or cleaning kits. You can check anyone out at www.reselleratings.com.

B&H and Adorama are the first two that come to mind for quality service and fair pricing. If you're looking used, throw in KEH, although they typically have new stuff as well.

The 18-200 is a good all in one package if you can live with some its shortcomings. It does suffer from distortion wide open at the extremes, and for me it is neither quite wide enough or long enough. Eventually, you'll likely want either more reach or more width and then the lens becomes redundant. A great way to start would be to get the 18-70 and 70-300vr, although the new 16-85 should displace the 18-70 as a popular quality "kit" lens. With the new 16-85/70-300 setup, you'll get more width and length and likely better image quality (if only slightly). I'm not a big fan of superzooms. Lots of people are, and lots do love the 18-200 and its only recently become readily available, after nearly 2 years in release. I will say, if I had to get one superzoom, the 18-200vr would be the one I'd get.
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Old Jan 29, 2008, 12:52 PM   #3
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Thanks RJ.

I have just been gifted with $4000 to spend on the D300 @ accessories. One thing that I would definitely want for it is the battery grip. I'll also need a case for it. The balance can be applied to the lens. I would really like the 70-200 2.8 VR, but that lens amounts to about the same cost as the D300 camera body itself. I don't really like to tote a tripod, everywhere I go - despite the fact that I do like a lot of nighttime, and other low-light photography. I know that I will want something fast enough for good 'sporting' shots, and lens choices are (somewhat yet) a foggy area for me. I have only had the Pentax 50mm/1.4, and the Tamron 18-200mm 3.5/6.3 on my K10d, so these two lenses are the only two lenses that I know anything about. I wonder if my Tamron will fit on the D300. If so, I can use it as my temporary walk-a-round, and have enough to get that 70-200 (or maybe another of the ones you mentioned above).

What do you think?


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Old Jan 29, 2008, 1:54 PM   #4
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If the Tamron is pentax mount, it will not fit your D300. If you want something fast, but a bit cheaper, there is an 80-200 f2.8, that can be found used for under $1000. It's not quite in the same class as the 70-200vr f2.8, but I would consider it a good value. For general all purpose low light, the 50 f1.8 is a steal at under $100 bucks and should be in everyones bag. I don't use it much, but it's nice to know you've got it. My current arsenal of lenses covers a wide range of shooting, and although I don't have alot of speed, the better higher ISO performance of today's current crop of DSLR's somewhat reduce the need for fast glass (that's reduce, not eliminate). I use

Nikon 105 f2.8 micro, the D version, not the new VR
Sigma 10-20
Nikkor 18-135
Nikkor 70-300VR
Nikkor 50 f1.8

This lineup covers nearly everything and totals about $1800 invested. The 105 and 50 were bought used. The 105 is can be used as a fast moderate tele in a pinch if I need the extra speed. I too would love the 70-200Vr, but it's just not in the budget, considering it costs as much as my 5 lenses put together.
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Old Jan 30, 2008, 11:55 AM   #5
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B&H has had the D300 in stock recently. That's where I purchased mine. I wouldn't truse any place offering them for less than $1799 right now. There is no reason to be discounting them as they can sell all they can get at suggested retail.
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Old Jan 30, 2008, 2:10 PM   #6
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Thanks RJ.

You know, I have been given some conflicting information about whether - or not - the D300 was weather-sealed. So, I go directly to the spec sheet, on this camera, and can find no mention, at all, on this. If it was an incoprated feature, you would think that the company would've definitely made mention of it.

But I just read a few 'user-reviews', on the D300, and have copied a portion of what one, very satisfied, poster had to offer. Here it is:

"The build quality is outstanding, it looks and feels like a tank. Remember that, with camera, you are getting an environmental sealing which is not the case for the D80/40/40x. Combine that with a sealed lens like the 17-55DX f/2.8 and you'll gone have a very nice combo even in bad weather. Is that important ? Yes, it is. Otherwise you have to take care all the time and protect your camera from water drops, dust and snowflakes. The sound of the shutter is softer (more silent) than on the D80, probably because of some other materials were used for building the mirror holder and the shutter".

Now, maybe the underlined (which is what I did) is defintely a property of the D300, but that it means something different from 'weather-sealing'. I will be in the position to order the camera tomorrow, and it would sure be nice to know that this poster was on-the-money about what he stated. If so, it would mean that the D300 does, indeed, offer some degree of protection from the elements.

Blessings,
Nathan
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Old Jan 30, 2008, 2:15 PM   #7
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The D300 does offer some protection. It is not completely weather sealed, but has all the gaskets and orings in key areas (dials and buttons) that the lower end cameras do not. It also has a heavier fram and body. It is built more like a mack truck than a tank. The D3 is weather sealed and built like a tank.
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Old Jan 30, 2008, 2:58 PM   #8
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Thanks again, RJ.

Well - first thing tomorrow - I will submit my order for the D300. I will have even more than I thought - what with the exchange rate - by which to order the D3. But that wouldn't be wise, because I'd be able to do nothing with it, for the better part a year (at least), except just sit and look at it - because of not having the caliber of fine glass needed to use with it :-).

My present qualifications don't even come close to the measure of Nikon's D300, but I have an insatiable appetite for learning, and happen to be one very highly motivated effort giver, who fully believes in obtaining the very best equipment that you possibly can - and gowing into it.

I will become a notable photographer, and it won't take years for this to happen. The D300 will be my financial springboard into Nikon's best of the line - at that time when my pocket has truly become 'Nikonized' :-).

Blessings, my friend.
Nathan
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Old Feb 9, 2008, 5:04 PM   #9
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B&H gets my vote too. I just got mine from them and i have delat with them before. Very professional and they have never tried to sell me the store.
Caryl
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