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Old Oct 19, 2007, 2:23 PM   #11
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What kind of Nikon lenses do you have now?

If you're looking at models like the D300, that may be a better way to go, versus selling them for another system if you have a big investment and want to use them.

The higher end Nikon bodies (D200, D300 and up) will meter with manual focus lenses. The lower end Nikon models (D40, D40x, D80) won't meter with non-CPU lenses.

In other systems, if you're looking at models like the EOS-40D in the Canon lineup, I'd also look at the new Sony Alpha 700 (a.k.a., DSLR-A700)

It's starting to hit some dealer shelves now ( for example, ritzcamera.com and bhphotovideo.com are showing them (although B&H only had the A700 + 18-70mm kit the last time I checked and ritz has been shipping the body only). sonystyle.com has them, too.

I just got one as an upgrade to my Konica Minolta Maxxum 5D. Both will use Minolta Autofocus lenses and have stabilization built into the camera body.

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Old Oct 21, 2007, 7:12 AM   #12
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drgrafix wrote:
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[...]* Conceptually, the Oly seems to be compelling, but then you have to deal with whether this format will go the way of Beta vs VHS with Oly, Leica, Kodak, and few others trying to start a new religion.* [...]
Except that the Beta v VHS was a war over media formats. The comparator is HD-DVD vs BluRay or crazy digital media wars (CF, SD, XD, memorystick, MMCm, etc).

SLR market has always been dominated by incompatible proprietary lens mounts and common standardish media (35mm film or other formats).

When choosing to buy a DSLR, one only has to decide if the company making the camera will continue to make lenses you want.

FourThirds has the advantage of multiple manufacturers making a wider variety of compatible lenses which means the format is likely to deliver a wider range of lenses than a single manufacturer. At least there will be Olympus and Leica to choose from.

I thought though that owners of Canon or Nikon would keep their old lenses to use with new digital bodies.

FourThirds uses may be swayed by the new format's theoretical design which is supposed to reduce the angle between the light rays and digital sensor and therefore improve contrast. But I have yet to see an objective comparison of image contrast from the different manufacturers.
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Old Oct 21, 2007, 1:30 PM   #13
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TCav wrote:
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In addition to a common physical and electrical mount, 4/3 mount cameras also use a 4:3 aspect ratio image sensor (That's where the "4/3" comes from.) as opposed to the 3:2 aspect ratio used by other dSLRs and 35mm film cameras before them.
This is a small misconception. The "Four Thirds" nomenclature is based on video camera technology. Vidicon tubes were made in inch dimensions, and, when CCD cameras came in, they were made in sizes such that their diagonal dimensions would fit the image circle of the existing lenses. ( a familiar story, no?) So a 2/3" CCD is just a hearking back to those old sizes, and the 4/3" size was created to be twice the size of the 2/3". The 4:3 aspect ratio is standard with video, and was, for some of the reasons you have mentioned, carried over to this system.

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Old Oct 22, 2007, 2:27 PM   #14
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Interesting thoughts about 4/3rds having roots in video as far as format goes.

And the truth in the matter is that visually, many consumers are getting on the 16:9 HD bandwagon even though digital TV will be broadcast in both 4:3 _and_ 16:9 formats when they kill analog TV in a year. So one has to wonder if digital cameras (especially DSLRs) are perceived (by the masses) as electronic 35mm cameras or something more esoteric... like a portable HD recording system or something else?

Too bad none of these 4/3rds guys had the design sense to follow the golden mean which would give you a 1.61803399:1 formula!!! At least that looks closer to the 35mm and HD 16:9 aspect! And its been around since the designing of the Parthenon and probably before that. Heck, I use it whenever I can in design, but merely presenting a photo in the golden mean's proportion is one thing, composing the subject with that formula is far more difficult. In an artistic sense, photographs can be sort of simplified to a captured moment, whereas ground-up design encompasses so many more subtleties whether it's 2D or 3D. Just my $ .02

But getting back to the possibilities, the fact that Olympus, Kodak, Panasonic, and Leica are kind of on board... that does suggest the possibility of a broad range of lens marketing, but OTH... wouldn't the pure aftermarket lens guys want a piece of this pie as well? Its still a jump into a dark ravine IMHO, but maybe it'll be good in the end. As has been suggested, Oly is out there on the bleeding edge, so on one hand you have to give them props for taking the leap. Whether I'd make that jump is still questionable. I have to be a little practical and think it through & through.

And Jim... to answer your question about the Nikon lenses I have and have used, some are on eBay as I write this, but the short list is:

24mm Auto-Nikkor wide-angle f/2.8
45mm Auto GN Nikkor pancake f/2.8
55mm Auto-Nikkor f/1.2 Prime (my BIG glass)
55mm Auto-Nikkor Micro/Macro f/2.8
43-86mm Auto-Nikkor Zoom (Sold)
105mm Auto-Nikkor Telephoto f/2.5
80-200mm Auto-Nikkor Tele-Zoom f4.5
500mm Nikkor f/8 Mirror (Sold)

I'm not really sure how any of these would work out with say a D20 or D200. I realize none of the new DSLR lenses have the "feel" of these vintage lenses, but I'm thinking I will probably not need/buy this many lenses for whatever DSLR I wind up with, and yeah... the D300 sounds like one awesome camera, but the body alone will cost as much as the Canon EOS 40D with the basic kit lens.


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Old Oct 22, 2007, 3:09 PM   #15
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With your lens collection (you like the primes and you've got some good ones), I'd get a Nikon D200 if a D300 is not in the budget. They'll meter with manual focus Nikkor lenses (lower end Nikon dSLR models won't).

beachcamera.com (a.k.a., buydig.com) probably has some of the lowest legitimate prices for it right now:

Nikon D200 Body at beachcamera.com for $1,499

If I were on a tighter budget, I'd get a factory refurbished Nikon D200. From my perspective, the only downside is the shorter 90 day warranty period and you're already saving $300 towards any repair costs in the unlikely event it breaks during the normal 12 month warranty period anyway. The last refurbished Nikon I bought arrived in like new condtion.

Factory Refurbished Nikon D200 for $1,199 at beachcamera.com

Be very careful buying Nikon gear. Ask about any vendor here first. If you see lower prices than this from anyone other than a major dealer like B&H, you're pobably dealing with a scam artist selling gray market gear (cameras not intended for sale in the country you live in).

They'll use misleading statements like "USA warranty" and more, when they mean a store warranty that may not be worth the paper it's written on. Nikon USA will refuse to service a gray market camera, even if you are willing to pay them for the repairs. Make sure to buy from an authorized Nikon dealer for the country you live in.

It's a very competitive market right now. If a price looks too good to be true, it probably is.

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Old Oct 27, 2007, 10:52 AM   #16
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Jim... It may sound weird, but my thought was to sell all those lenses (they're on eBay right now), and then start fresh and not be "forced" into one particular brand path. Admitedlly, I've always been a Nikon guy (bought my first F Photomic in 1970). This way, if I do decide to go with a Canon, Sony, Olympus, or Pentax... I'm not making a purchase based on the fact that I have some nice vintage glass. That plus the fact that if I kept all/some of the lenses, I might be limited to buying a used/refurbished D80 as opposed to possibly buying a Cannon 40D kit or a D300 Kit. I just sold my CP 990 this week and that helps a bit too. I figure I'll probably be ready to buy in mid-late November so I have a lot of thinking to do, but I guess if I had my druthers... right now the D300 seems like the most appealing camera with the 40D very close behind.

Have to ask you one question that will possibly save me some research. What DSLR cameras have the ability to use some sort of WiFi (bluetooth or wireless G) to transfer images direct to your pc or allow the pc to access the images still in the camera's memory card?
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Old Oct 27, 2007, 11:48 AM   #17
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The Canon WFT-E3A wireless (and wired) transmitter accessory can provide wireless (or wired) file transfer for the Canon 40D. It can also support USB devices like GPS, storage, etc.

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Old Oct 27, 2007, 8:14 PM   #18
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OUCH! That's a pretty pricey accessory at $750.00!!! Is that typical of similar devices or capabilities of other brands?
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