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Old Jun 1, 2009, 3:44 PM   #1
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Default Nikon D40x - lens recommendations - 2nd attempt at posting

Hi,

I'm trying this again ..... the first post (directly under this one) is showing up with no text - I don't know why, perhaps it was because I typed the post in a word document and did a "copy & paste".

I have been reading this forum for a while now and have the opportunity to purchase a couple of lenses for my Nikon D40x which came with a 18-55 lens as part of a bundle. I have had this for 2 years and would like to expand my knowledge and abilities.

Some background info ..... I am a quilter and take photos of my quilts and works in progress for my Blog. I enjoy taking photos of flowers in my garden - I've learnt how to change the F stop but it only goes as low at 5 and I know enough to know that I need a lens with a lower number.

I have 2 children who get their photos taken regularly, whether they like it or not - LOL. My son is a sailor and I like to photograph him on his sailboat at regattas.

What I would like to buy:

A macro lens, a zoom and one other lens to complement what I already have.

My research has lead me to:

Sigma 105mm F2.8 - this appears to be more budget friendly than the Nikon equivalent.

Nikon DX VR 55-200mm Compact Telephoto Digital Zoom

Questions?

Would these be good options for me?

Nikon 50mm 1.8 AF - I have heard about this lens and read about it - a number of quilters use this lens for publishing blog photos and it is clear to me that the quality of their photos is superior to mine. It appears as if there is more light with this lens - correct? What other advantages does this lens have?

Thanks for your help/opinions/recommendations ..... I found this forum after a google search on the Sigma Macro Lens.

And now I'll hold my breath and hope that this posts because I've now typed it 3 times!

Thanks,
Doodlebug Gail
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Old Jun 1, 2009, 10:15 PM   #2
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The Sigma 105mm is a well liked Macro lens (but, no autofocus on a D40x). If you don't mind manual focus, it would work. You'd probably like that VR Nikkor zoom you're looking at (which will Autofocus on a D40x).

As for the Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 AF lens, it's not going to Autofocus on a D40x either (since the D40x camera body doesn't have a focus motor built in and that lens requires one to autofocus). So, you'd have to use it with manual focus only if you got one. Yes, it's a brighter lens, allowing faster shutter speeds for a given lighting and ISO speed. That also means you'll have a shallower depth of field if you use it at wider apertures (lower f/stop numbers). If you want Autofocus, you'll need to go with something else though (for example, a Nikkor AF-S or Sigma HSM lens with a focus motor built in).
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Old Jun 2, 2009, 9:15 AM   #3
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P.S.

If you want a Macro lens that will Autofocus on your D40x, I'd look at the Nikkor AF-S 60mm f/2.8G and AF-S 105mm f/2.8G VR lenses. In the Nikon lineup, you'll need an AF-S (Silent Wave Motor focusing) lens if you want Autofocus on your camera body.

As for a 50mm (non-macro) lens, the usability of a brighter prime in a 50mm focal length would depend on what you want to shoot. You'll want to make sure the focal length you're buying is appropriate for the amount of room you'll have more often when using one (as you can only back up so far). Nikon now makes a 35mm f/1.8 AF-S and 50mm f/1.4 AF-S lens that will autofocus on your D40x. Sigma has 30mm f/1.4 and 50mm f/1.4 HSM (Hypersonic Motor Focusing) lenses that will autofocus on your camera, too. But, the Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 AF lens you're looking at will not autofocus on a D40x (as it is not an AF-S lens with a built in motor, as required to Autofocus on a D40x).
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Old Jun 2, 2009, 9:56 AM   #4
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Jim, thanks so much for the explanation about the lenses not focusing on the D40x ..... I had read about that but couldn't find any info on what would work with my camera. I appreciate your answer and suggestions.

Sometimes I don't trust the information that a salesperson gives me .... you know what I mean - sometimes they just want to make the sale ..... so having all the correct information up front from people who will not profit from my sales makes me more comfortable.

I have a lot to think about ..... and a budget to keep in mind as well.

Thanks so much,
Gail
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