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Old Aug 31, 2009, 4:48 AM   #21
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I've never liked flash; you don't know what you'll get until after you take the shot.
That used to be true of all your photography, but a little bit of experience sorts these things out very quickly. Also shots are free and you can chimp afterwards to check exposure and dial in any FEC required. And of course once you have set your FEC level you don't need to check your exposure again indoors.

Comparing the D90 + 18-105 - to your current setup.

According to DXOMark. Your 5D has a SN ratio of 27dB at ISO800, the D90 has 26.3dB at ISO3200. I take from that that you gain two extra stops at the high end. If you are happy with 800 on the 5D you will be happy with 3200 on the D90.

Compare your Tamron 17-50 f2.8 to the Nikon 18-105 VR.
18mm max aperture is f3.5 - loses 1/2 stop, but you have gained 2 from the sensor.
At 50mm the aperture is f5 - loses 1.5 stops, but you have gained 2 from the sensor.

Plus of course you have gained the versatility of the longer zoom range, and the 18-105 is very sharp wide open throughout its range. I never can figure out what people are worried about with vignetting unless it is very extreme. Usually it's visually useful and I often dial in extra vignetting. Removing it with post-processing is trivial if it really bothers you, and in fact the D90 has built in compensation if you are shooting JPG anyway.

On the Olympus side of things...
The low-light performance of the E30 seems slightly better than the E3, and basically the same as your current camera. But those Olympus lenses sure are special.

At any rate, I would certainly go for the Nikon D90 ahead of the Pentax. I like to shoot with primes and there are a huge range of prime lenses available for Nikon, including that very sweet new 35mm DX at a lovely price.

The Sigma 30mm f1.4 is a nice lens, but the 28,24,20 f1.8 are not action lenses at all. Very poor for kids. The AF is VERY slow and noisy and inaccurate. They are FF landscape lenses and of a fairly old design.

The Canon only really takes off at a higher price point in my view.
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Old Aug 31, 2009, 7:37 AM   #22
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that very sweet new 35mm DX at a lovely price.
Every evening over the summer, at around 19H00 when the first drinky is served, my 35mm went onto the D40. I may have said it before, but to me f/1.8 wasn't giving enough in focus, so I usually had it on f/2.

Great lens.

Matt
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Old Aug 31, 2009, 9:27 PM   #23
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Peripatetic,

The Nikon D90 seems to be quite a camera. I'll take a good look at it. Thanks.
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Old Aug 31, 2009, 10:54 PM   #24
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I missed this thread because I was on a mini-vacation the last few days. I also didn't say anything in your thread about the 77 Ltd because I wasn't sure which equestrian sport you were shooting and thought the 77 would be a bit short for most things other than dressage (like for hunter/jumpers in a large ring). Knowing thats your primary indoors sport helps a lot.

You know I'd recommend the K7 and the 77 Ltd - it's one of my two favorite lenses. I'd love to have the opportunity to try to shoot an indoor dressage test with that combination. The focusing is definitely faster with the K7 than with previous models - everything is faster. I've had more success with birds in flight and moving animals (both of which I'm lousy at), but I haven't yet had a chance to shoot any sports, indoors or out so can't really say from specific experience. Higher ISO is really good through 1600, 3200 can be useable if exposed right. Forget about using 6400 (at least in my opinion). Video is sort-of interesting (works well, like it should, you can add an external mic for stereo sound recording), but not really my thing.

One of the nice things about the Pentax system and macro - you have the option of using many older, excellent macro lenses. I use a Vivitar Series One 105mm macro lens that's manual focus, but is really sharp. Want to add an extension tube? Pick up a poor quality manual TC ($5.00 or so) and take out the glass. The lens becomes a manual lens, but that's not a big deal since you can still focus wide-open and have the camera stop down the lens when you press the shutter.

As far as TCs go - if you can find one of the Pentax 1.7 TCs that can auto focus itself, you won't have to worry about the SDM focusing. Some of the Tamron TCs will allow SDM lenses to focus, but it's not a guaranteed thing. If you get the Tamron 70-200 f2.8 you wouldn't have to worry about it.
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Old Sep 1, 2009, 2:57 AM   #25
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And Canon have just announced an Image Stabilised Macro lens!

I take it that the new 7D might be out of the price range you're looking at? Looks like quite a mind-boggling new camera. (I just read the specs and am somewhat boggled.)
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Old Sep 1, 2009, 7:20 AM   #26
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I know next to nothing about the tech of dSLRs, but isn't putting 18M pixels onto an APS-C sensor just asking for noise issues due to the pixel density?

I wonder how badly us in Europe will be shafted by the price.

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