Steve's Digicams Forums

Steve's Digicams Forums (
-   What Camera Should I Buy? (
-   -   Kit Comparisons (

miked2372 Nov 1, 2006 11:08 AM

Ok, I have decided to move onto a budget DSLR. After looking at and handling a number of different cameras and options I have narrowed myself down to the Olympus E500 and the Nikon D50.

What I am looking at (due to budget amongst other things) is buying the camera as part of a kit with lenses. Now I know that I can get the D50 with 18-55 and 55-200 for around £500 and the E500 with 14-45 and 40-150 for around the same price. I have also seen the D50 available with the 18-70 but for a little less thatn the other 2 kits. For a beginner, am I better off going with the dual-lens kits and gaining experience with those or go with the 18-70 as I believe that is a better lens from what I have read. I will be shooting normal family/holiday shots aswell as trying to learn as much as possible about photography in general.

Any help/advice is much appreciated

superakuma Nov 1, 2006 12:01 PM

If you are on a budget, I wouldnt buy the Olympus camera. The problem with the olympus camera is that all the lense are expensive as heck. If the lense kits are t he ONLY lense that you will ever use, then you should be fine. But if you plan to buy other lense, the olympus lense will cost a lot more. The advantage of the Nikon is that you are able to buy used lense or older lense and still use it. You can find some really nice glass for under $100. For the olympus, I cant think of any GOOD lense that dont cost less then $2-300.

DougJGreen Nov 1, 2006 2:23 PM

I strongly disagree with superakuma's post. Olympus makes 2 very nice and quite inexpensive kit lenses, the 14-45mm and the 40-150mm lenses, which are as good or (especially in the case of the 40-150) superior to the inexpensive lenses of other manufactureres. The 40-150mm is certainly a GOOD lens actually, it'sVERY GOOD.

The two inexpensive kit lenses are more than sufficient for many folks for their first DSLR camera.

Olympus also makes several SUPERB medium priced lenses that cover the needs of all but the most specialized professionals:

The Olympus 50mm f2 Macro lens is typically available under $400 and it's a great lens. They also make a 35mm macro that is quite inexpensive, typically selling for under $200.

The Olympus 14-54mm f2.8~3.5 is a great midrange zoom that's fast, a reasonable macro lens, and sharp across it's entire range, and it's typically also available for under $450

the Olympus 11-22mm is priced at well under $800 in most places, and that is less expensve than most Brand name camera manufacturer's fast wide angle zooms, and the lens is flat out superb. I bought a used one for just above $500, which is comparable to the Off brand wide zooms new selling prices.

The Olympus 50-200 is also priced at undet $900 and that is comparable to other maker's 70-200 fast lenses, except that on the Oly system, the reach of this lens is more comparable to 270mm on a Canon or Nikon, and up to 150 (which is comparable to 200 on the other brands, the lenses are equally fast).

And if these lenses don't meet your needs, Sigma also supports the system with 9 announced lenses, including fast primes (24 and 30mm), Macros (100 and 150mm) and a range of general purpose (18-50mm and 55-200mm) and LONG Zooms (including 135-400mm and 50-500mm)

Only Olympus's ultra fast or ultra widefixed maxaperture lenses are very expensive, and that is true in EVERY brand.

That being said, the Nikon D50 is also a nice camera. But Nikon's 18-55mm kit lens is barely better than junk, and nowhere near the quality of the Olympus 14-45mm.Nikon's 18-70mm is MUCH better than their 18-55. But you would still probably wish to have a longer telephoto to go with it.

BenjaminXYZ Nov 2, 2006 5:12 AM

Both kits are just as great in their own ways.

The kit lenses of both dSLR kits might justbe rather similar in terms of bothquality and range.

Prices should all also be quite similar.

In conclusion, you should be selecting the kit(s) that suits your criteria(s) the best.


miked2372 Nov 2, 2006 5:52 AM

Thanks for all the replies, they are much appreciated.

I had heard from reading a lot of forums etc that the Oly kit lenses were better than Nikons but I was not really discounting the D50 as it is still a very nice camera (especially for a beginner in DSLR's).

I think that as I am looking (hoping!!) to learn a lot I would like a dual kit as it gives me more options. I included the 18-70 kit as I had heard that it was a superior lens to the 18-55 and maybe I could purchase a longer zoom after a short while!!

I don't thinkI am that concerned re the availability for four thirds lenses as I am hoping to cover most situations with the dual kit and by the time I do think about extending my lens range they would have come down in price. I also think that as Sigma are on board now, that will help the situation and maybe other manufacturers will come on board. Obviously, the Nikon gives me more options straight away but I am not concerned straight away unless I get the single lens kit and look at purchasing the zoom in the near future!!

BenjaminXYZ Nov 2, 2006 7:24 AM

The 18 - 70 mm Nikkor E.D.lens have a build in silent wave focusing (U.S.M.)motor with full time manual focus over-right; I am not sure whether the Olympus lenses have those features.

rjseeney Nov 2, 2006 7:26 AM


That being said, the Nikon D50 is also a nice camera. But Nikon's 18-55mm kit lens is barely better than junk, and nowhere near the quality of the Olympus 14-45mm.Nikon's 18-70mm is MUCH better than their 18-55. But you would still probably wish to have a longer telephoto to go with it."
"Junk" is a bit harsh and also misleading. While I agree the Olympus kit lens is clearly the better lens, the difference between the 18-55 and 18-70 isn't as distinct as many are lead to believe. The biggest difference is in zoom range. Each lens has its strengths and weaknesses. Wide open on the short end of the focal range, the 18-55 is actually better than the 18-70, especially in terms of vignetting. If your shooting mostly wide angle shots, the 18-55 is the better choice. It is also a bit less prone to CA. The 18-70 has a better zoom range, slightly better build quality (is a true AF-S lens, whereas the 18-55 is a slightly stripped down version) and is slightly sharper through the middle part of the zoom. Overall, I think the two lens kit is a better value for the beginning photographer as it can be had for nearly the same price as just getting the 18-70 with the D50. At normal print sizes (up to 8x10), the typical user will not see any difference in image quality.

miked2372 Nov 2, 2006 7:33 AM

I think asa beginner, I would benefit more from a dual lens kit as you say, mainly due to the fact that I can get both of those kits for the same prices as a D50 or D70s with the 18-70!! It's just making the final decision on which one though I don't really think I can go wrong with either!!

BenjaminXYZ Nov 2, 2006 8:18 AM

It looks to me that you cannot go wrong with the Nikon D50 plusit's two kit lens option.

If users ofthe D50'skitcan say that it is good, then it must begood indeed. ;)

peripatetic Nov 2, 2006 8:43 AM

My brother got the D50 + 2-lens kit.

He's been very happy with the results, for web prints and small prints he cannot see a difference compared to his much larger, heavier and more expensive Nikon lenses that he brought with him from film days.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:24 PM.