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Old Oct 27, 2006, 11:34 AM   #1
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Hi, I'm a new SLR user, and I'm considering purchasing the new Nikon D80.

I'm not very familiar with the lenses and was hoping you guys could help me out.

There are three packages Henry's are offering (Canadian prices):

NIKON D80 D-SLR W/ 18-135 DX LENS - $1549.99
NIKON D80 DIGITAL SLR W/18-70DX LENS - $1589.99
NIKON D80 DIGITAL SLR W/SIGMA 18-200 DC - $1619.99

For an amatuer photographer, which of these packages is ideal? If someone could explain to me what these three lenses provides, that'll be great!


I would appreciate your help and advice :-)
Thanks!
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Old Oct 27, 2006, 11:43 AM   #2
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Since it looks like you've pretty much decided on a camera, and need help deciding what lens is better for you, I've moved this thread down to our Nikon Lenses Forum where you'll find Nikon owners that can help you decide on what's best.

You may want to give members more information about the conditions you plan on using a camera in, along with the purposes of the images (viewing/print sizes needed, etc.) so that they can give you better informed opinions.

As a general rule, the greater the difference between wide and long, the more compromises a lens manufacturer needs to make. Any lens choice is a compromise (size, weight, focal range, brightness, AF speed and more). So, depending on the conditions you plan on using a camera in, and the purpose of the images, one choice versus another may end up being a better "fit" for your needs. Each user will be a little different in these areas, along with their expectations of quality.

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Old Oct 27, 2006, 11:55 AM   #3
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Thanks JimC for moving my post. This makes more sense :-)


As for camera usage...I would like to use the camera for all purposes (indoor/outdoor, close-ups, speed shots, etc.) I know there are specific lenses for different purposes. But because I'm still a beginner at this, I would generally like an all-around purpose lens.

I hope that gives you an understanding of what i'm looking for.

Thanks,


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Old Oct 27, 2006, 12:11 PM   #4
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I was afraid that you would say that. :-)

We'd all like one lens that excels in all areas. But, any lens choice is a compromise in one area or another.

The lens with the highest quality output in your list is probalby the 18-70mm.

But, it's focal range is not as great from wide to long. So, if you plan on taking photos of distant subjects, a longer lens could be desirable.

These are not the brightest lenses around either (and how bright a lens is impacts size, weight and cost). So, in lower light conditions, you may find yourself needing something different (i.e, night sports in a stadium, indoor use without a flash, etc.).

Personally, I'd probably avoid the Nikkor 18-135mm and the Sigma 18-200mm, based on comments I've seen about their quality compared to some of the other lenses around. But, many users may like these types of lenses, because they're convenient (having a lot of focal range from wide to long in a single lens). Each user is going to have different expectations of quality.

I'll let Nikon users comment on their pros and cons, as my only Nikon gear is for film (other than an old Coolpix I still have). So, I don't keep up with all of the nuances of Nikon's newer lens offerings.



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Old Oct 27, 2006, 12:48 PM   #5
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The only lens i would avoid in the bunch is the Sigma 18-200. The two Nikon lenses you mention are both very good, but each have some limitations. The 18-70 is great optically (decent edge to edge sharpness, very little light fall off) but suffers a bit from vignetting wide open at no zoom. The range also is a little shorter than most people stepping up to DSLR's want. The 18-135 is actually sharper than the 18-70 until you get closer to full zoom. However, the extra sharpness is offset by distortion epsecially on the wide end, and it suffers a bit from CA. Because of the zoom range, most consumers will gravitate toward this lens, but they must be aware of the distortion and CA issues. Also, because of the longer focal range, you will need good technique to handhold this lens at full zoom.
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Old Oct 27, 2006, 2:18 PM   #6
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Thanks for all your great advice!


Let's say I end up purchasing the 18-70 DX package...I'm also planning on purchasing the
Nikon AF Nikkor 70-300mm f/4-5.6G for close-up pictures (on a budget).


Does this purchase of lenses make any sense? Please excuse if this sounds like a stupid question, but I'm pretty new to this and i could use your advice.


Thanks


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Old Oct 27, 2006, 4:22 PM   #7
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A favorite budget lens here is the Sigma 70-300 DG APO Macro because of its macro feature. The Nikon 70-300G is okay, except it gets soft beyond 200mm, also its closest focusing distance is 5 feet, so you really can't get that close to the subject. Make sure you checkout the lens' closest focusing distance to make sure it's something that would work for you.

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Old Oct 27, 2006, 10:08 PM   #8
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hmmm, the Sigma 70-300 DG APO Macro lens eh? i'll look into that :-)

Thanks for all the advice guys!
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