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Old Mar 29, 2006, 2:50 PM   #1
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I'm new to the digital SLR world. I've pretty much decided on buying a D50 (though still could be persuaded). My questions are:

1. Does any one see any issues with buying a refurbished D50?

2. I'm going to South Africa on safari and want a good lense. What should I buy? Outside of this trip, I plan on taking mostly landscape photos. Furthermore, what other accessories should I consider buying.

Cheers!
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Old Mar 29, 2006, 4:26 PM   #2
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I bought a "factory demo", I think about the same as a refurbished unit. I have not had any problems at all. The lens kit I got was 28-80 and 70-300, I think a better choice would be the 18-70 but that adds money to the kit. I think it would be hard to hand hold anything longer than 300 so you might look into a mono-pod or tri-pod. Good luck and enjoy your trip Greg
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Old Mar 29, 2006, 5:18 PM   #3
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If it's refurbished by Nikon, then it should be alright. The only thing is, I don't think would get a 5 year warranty on the lens.

I don't know if you're in the US, (I've said this so many times here, that I should ask these folks for money) but I was able to buy a Nikon D50 with 18-55 lens and 70-300 lens and a Nikon bag from Cameta Camera on eBay for $680. You should check them out.

As far as safari, you'll probably need a long lens, and hopefully a fast one. The Nikon 70-300G that I got is probably too slow for shooting cheetahs on full speed. I would definately suggest you get a tripod, but a monopod would probably be better since it's more mobile. Bring a backup P&S as well in case your D50 breaks, and please play around with your D50 before going on the trip as it has a learning curve and last thing you want to happen is go home with crappy pictures after spending money on that trip.

Good Luck!

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Old Mar 29, 2006, 6:27 PM   #4
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I truly believe that Rey raised the key points quite well.

1. Purchase the D-50 2-3 months in advance of your trip. The learning curve will be substatial. Safari shooting is very rapid shooting, you must be very used to your camera, and not fumble, thus loosing shots.

2. A faster lens will allow you the needed higher shutter speeds that are a lot of times required in safari shooting.

3. You will need a monopod or tripod for low light level shooting. Again practice a lot with both and decide which better meets your needs.

MT
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Old Mar 29, 2006, 6:35 PM   #5
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Great tips. Thank you. Unfortunately, I'm only going to have a week to get ramped up but it will have to do.
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Old Mar 30, 2006, 1:59 AM   #6
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My experience is that a fast lens is not essential. I shot 100ASA film in Africa with the Nikkor 70-300 f4/5.6 and didn't find speed a problem. Even bat eared foxes at dawn were ok with it (although I may have put some 400ASA film in for dawn - I cannot remember). With a DSLR and ISO 1600 I would be even less concerned about fast lenses. I don't know about a cheetah at full speed, I only saw one and it was too idle to move! I got a good shot of it though.

Keith.
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Old Mar 30, 2006, 6:37 AM   #7
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Rookie I'm in the same situation as you. I'm going to South Africa on safari as well. I'm a total novice at photography. I too wanted to get one lense for the trip. I just got my D50 two nights ago. I bought the D50 kit with the 18-55 lense from OneCall delivered to my door for $615. I figured it wouldnt hurt to have the 18-55. I was considering either a 18-200 or the 28-300 to carry on safari. I'm not going till September so I have some time to figure it out. So any advice would be greatly appreciated.
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Old Mar 30, 2006, 7:14 AM   #8
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I've bought refurbed camera before and have not experienced any issues. However, unless you're getting a significant discount, I would go ahead and buy new. Saving an extra $50 bucks or so isn't enough to get extra glass or even any quality accessories, and you'll have a bit more peace of mind should anything go wrong with it.

If you're going to get just one lense, and can afford the nikon 18-200, then don't hesitate.
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