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Old Jul 30, 2005, 6:49 PM   #1
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As a background, I do not live in the first world and camera equipment is really very expensive here.

I have an old Nikon F70 body (bought 1998 )with the plastic mount, made in Thailand, 28 to 80mm, f3.5 to f5.6, D zoom lens that came with the camera.

I also have an 85mm f1.8D lens (bought 1998 )and a 70 to 210mm, F4 to 5.6, AF nonD zoom (bought 1991).

From the day I first heard about digital cameras I optimistically thought I would just be able to buy a Nikon Digital body to supplement my system. Alas, the first digital camera's looked nothing like an SLR. After patiently waiting, I was excited to witness the birth of the D100 several years later. Sadly, this was introduced at a price that made all my previous Nikons look like very inexpensive purchases.

After waiting several more years, the newly released D50 finally looks as though it can be considered viable by the minister of finance (don't ask). If I just purchase the body with no new lenses it is financially a more viable option for me.

Please understand that I have read every single thing I can about these cameras over the years. I am very familiar with field of view multipliers etc. However, I have zero hands on experience of any of this equipment.

May I ask the resident experts the following questions?

1. Would I be missing anything by just purchasing the D50 body and non of the new DX lenses?

2. Apart from losing the wide angle view, how would my old "standard zoom" work on the D50? Does the AF-S motor make all that much difference? This lens focusses very fast on my F70. (I think, nothing to compare it to!) Optical quality comparison with newer lenses?

3. Will the 85mm (now 128mm) become just too telephoto to be useful? Will having it on a D50 become a suddenirritation, requiring frequent lens changes?

4. To complicate matters further in this country, the D50 and the D70s are both available with the superior 18 to 70mm kit lens. With this option, the price of the two camera's becomes very similar because I think the lens is more "subsidised" in the D70s package. The gut feel is to then go for the D70s because it's not much more, but in some respects it seems to be "behind" the D50 (D50=autofocus-A, newer sensor, less image noise, smaller, lighter, viewfinder cup largeretc.) If I did buy camera plus lens, I'm confused as to which kit I should go for. (I am not buying the 18 to 55mm lens)

I mostly take pictures of people, often in low light. (SB 600 one day!). However, I am desperately envious of those perfect landscapes I see some of my friends producing.

Your practical advice will be much appreciated, thanks.

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Old Aug 1, 2005, 7:50 AM   #2
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Everyone I have talked to, thinks the 50mm 1.8 is an awesome lens. I will probably buy one for low light situations.

I personally prefer the versatility of zoms. I own the 24-120 VR and the 70-200 2.8 VR and just absolutley love them. Yesterday for example, I was shooting a play at an indoor theater. No flash allowed so I broke out the 70-200 2.8. I actually had to move to the balcony to get far enough back to get the whole stage but I could also zoom in on individuals when I wanted to.

Later in the evening, my brother and his girlfriend, couldn't believe how bright and clear my shots were without a flash.

I also own a 105mm 2.8 Micro. This is my only prime lens and I find it troublesome at times framing a shot because I have to physically move in and out to change my framing. I love the lens though because I like to do closeup photography.

I would suggest just buying the Nikon body of your choice ( I own the D70 and the D2X) and use the Nikkor lenses you already have. If they worked for you with film they will work well with digital as well. Just remeber the 1.5x multiplier factor for your focal lengths.

Good luck with your journey to digital
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Old Aug 2, 2005, 7:10 AM   #3
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Your old lenses will work just as well on a digital body as they do on film. The 1.5crop factor does mean that you lose the wide angle view and gain at the telephoto end. If you want to take wide angle shots you will eventually have to invest in a wider lens. Sigma make some good lenses and are cheaper than the Nikon equivalent.

As for your 85mm things are a little complicated. It will be effectively 128mm as you say so to get the same shot you will need to be further back. This is only likely to be a problem if you are using flash and it is not powerful enough or if you are in a restricted space. Lenses like the 85mm are often favoured for portrait photography because the slight perspective compression that you get with these lenses enhances the portrait. This is not affected by the crop factor so portraits taken on film or digital with thislens will look the same, al be it taken from different distances.

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Old Aug 8, 2005, 9:21 AM   #4
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My old Nikkor 400mmED manual focus lens does not work with my D50. The camera just lock the shutter when I put inthe old manual Nikkor.

This is what in the D50 manual:


CPU lenses (particularly type G and D lenses) are recomended for usewith the D50 (note that IX Nikkor CPU lenses can not be used). CPU lenses can be identified by the presence of CPU contacts. Type G lenses have no aperture ring and are marked with a "G" on the lens barrel, Type D lens are indicated by a "D".

When I bought the very expensive 400mmED more than 10 years ago Nikon said it will always be compatible with all future Nikons. It is not so.
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Old Aug 9, 2005, 12:37 AM   #5
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Hears a shot taken with my D50 and Nikon 70-210 @ f4 iso 1100

The photo was taken at sunset, the 70-210 belongs to a pro photograph. He let me try it for a few shots great lens but I prefer my 70-300G, its cheep, light and take sharp photos with the D50!

Needles to say if I hade the 70-210 id stick with it, its top quality glass and works great with the D50.

By the way I cant comment on the D70 but this photo at full resolution was simply perfect even @ iso 1100, I see no need for 2.8 glass anymore. Also I love my 18-55 kit lens. At first I wanted the 18-70 but now that I tried both I am keeping el cheepo!

Don't know about your other lens?


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Old Aug 9, 2005, 1:17 AM   #6
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An other D50 shot with on board flash and kit lens 18-55, the photographer in photo used a S2 and 24-70 lens with external flash, I can assure you The D50 shots where just as good if not better strait out of camera.

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Old Aug 9, 2005, 12:16 PM   #7
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Yes you are right, the 70-210 is an excellent lens, both shots hand held are tack sharp at full resolution, this one is representative of the available light (shot at iso200) we can almost say the difference is like knight and day! This is what higher iso can do and why this camera can do without 2.8 tele zooms in most situations.


Ps. Every summer RE/MAX makes a party for the agents kids! They take good care of kids, especially sick kids with 12million$ in donation every year.
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Old Sep 24, 2005, 8:44 AM   #8
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Not sure what you mean by CPU contacts. I have two Nikkor lenses (24-70 and 60-180). Both have five "contacts" (more like little nipples or bumps). There is a group of 4 together and then 1 on the left of the 4. Trying to determine if these are compatible with the D50. Neither lense is marked "D" or "G". Thanks
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Old Sep 24, 2005, 12:26 PM   #9
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See the Compatibility chart for details (D50 and D70 have no difference in compatibility).
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