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Old Apr 4, 2006, 2:01 PM   #1
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Hello - I am preparing to purchase a Nikon DSLR for taking pictures at horse events.

I need a camera with:
  1. as little shutter-lag as possible,[/*]
  2. that can focus on fast moving objects (close up and far away), and
    [/*]
  3. fast shutter speed.[/*]
"Nice to have" features would include
  1. Continuous Shooting, and[/*]
  2. very high resolution.[/*]
I have been looking at the D70 all along... but now am considering a higher model.

I am currently not a professional, but would like to work my way there. I've been saving $$$ and currently have $1000. That was my goal, and promised myself the D70 when I reached it, but now I'm closer to the possibility of D200.

Anyone have any opinions or facts that would help me make this decision?

I currently do not have any lenses or other accessories, so I don't have to worry about fitting current equipment. I want the best camera for this specific job.

THANK YOU!!
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Old Apr 4, 2006, 10:21 PM   #2
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SJSIMPSON-

In reality you will eventually need the Nikon D-200. However, you can most probably aid the process of getting started, as I did some 50+ years ago, by purchasing a used Nikon D-70 body, starting your lens collection, and developing your skills, little by little.

You often see D-70 DSLR dodies on E-Bay at quite a reasonable price. You need seasoning and experience and that is how you will get it.

MT
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Old May 23, 2006, 10:56 AM   #3
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Hi mtclimber,

I tried the D200 at an event a few weeks ago - wow. It was wonderful.

But, I've had several people tell me that if I'm serious about sports photography, I should get a Canon (the 30D). Anyone have thoughts on a preference for my requirements between the D200 and the 30D?

THANKS!
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Old May 23, 2006, 11:13 AM   #4
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If your shooting action, the D200 is the better choice over the D70. The D70's 3fps vs the D200 5fps makes a big difference. The D200 is also built a bit sturdier and will focus faster than the D70.
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Old May 23, 2006, 12:27 PM   #5
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sjsimpson2000 wrote:
Quote:
Hi mtclimber,

I tried the D200 at an event a few weeks ago - wow. It was wonderful.

But, I've had several people tell me that if I'm serious about sports photography, I should get a Canon (the 30D). Anyone have thoughts on a preference for my requirements between the D200 and the 30D?

THANKS!
If you like the D200 - stick with it. The only knock on the D200 from a sports shooting standpoint is it's higher noise content at high ISOsas compared to say the 20d or the Nikon d50. I'm a Canon shooter myself, but I think the noise thing is the only real benefit the 20d has over the D200. I keep saying 20d because the 30d is only about 6 weeks old - still a bit early to say if there are any problems with it although some people are reporting strange noise behavior such as one post here where ISO 500 showed less noise than ISO 400. So, I think it's a little early to say how good the 30d really is - especially as a sports camera.

As RJSeeney pointed out - if sports is your aim you really need to skip the entry level DSLRs and go with either D200 or 20D/30D. If you like the D200 then get it - I'm sure it will do a wonderful job for you.
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Old May 23, 2006, 12:37 PM   #6
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The D70 is out of the running.... After using the D200 I can't image using anything that isn't that good, or better.

So, I'm now trying to decide between D200 and 30D - although I haven't had the chance to use the 30D hands-on yet. The people that were advocating the 30D were really hot on the autofocus technology it has. Said it is better (newer?) than Nikon's. I can't say I know that much to talk at that level of detail.... They also said Canon lenses tend to be better. I'll be looking for zoom lenses.

Thanks again for your comments.... much appreciated! :G
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Old May 23, 2006, 1:16 PM   #7
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I've given your post some more consideration and here's what I have:

1. Be careful of the 'Canon lenses are better' people - a favorite picture of the Canon faithful is a sea of white lenses at a sports event. THose lenses are typically the 400mm 2.8 ($6700), 300mm 2.8 ($4200) and 600mm 4.0 ($7600) lenses with a smattering of 70-200 2.8s thrown in. Yes the big primes are the class of the sports shooting world but are you honestly looking to get one? If you want to take sports that seriously then the faithful are right. If you don't want to go that far and stick with the next tier of sports lenses then Canon doesn't have such a clear-cut edge.

2. I have a Canon 20D and love it. I think its a fantastic mid-range sports shooter body. The 30d is still new to market so I would never recommend something that un-tested but if there are no issues then it should be an even better sports camera (thanks to the 1/3 stop ISO adjustments).

3. Nikon D200 has all the specs to be a great sports camera unless you're in low light where the high ISO noise causes this camera to fall behind the Canon 20d. As a general camera, the D200 seems to get higher marks than the 20d. The problem is: there aren't as many people using the D200 for sports shooting as there are the 20d so you don't have as much of a knowledge pool to draw on for how the camera performs in this area.

4. While I warn you about the Canon faithful and to take their advice with a grain of salt - I also warn you - you're specifically looking fora sports shooting solution so be leery of people recommending a solution when they don't shoot sports. A given solution may be wonderful for another type of photography but may have warts that show up in the demanding field of sports shooting.

So, I can highly recommend the Canon 20d for sports shooting - especially if you want to eventually move up to 'the big white lenses' and a 1-series camera body. The D200 has the specs, but you need to find some credible sports shooters that use it for sports shooting to find out how well it really performs. Take a look at various forums - especially fred miranda's sports corner and dp review. Look at people's photos and which gear they're using. Also search on Pbase. See if the specs actually translate into real world performance.

You're welcome to see my sports work with the 20d (all done with Sigma lenses by the way - I don't have the money yet for the big Canon primes :-)):

www.jagsportsphotos.com


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Old May 23, 2006, 11:24 PM   #8
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Depends on your necesity, if you can live with using max 800iso for getting good quality the D200 is your camera hands down, if not a 20-30D. If your a nikon enthusiast and don't wan't to spend as much get the D70S. To be honest If I had extra $$ around (im a canon kinda person) I would get the D200 In a heart beat, wouldn't even look to the other side if my shooting necessities do not require decent quality ISO above 1600-3200ISO. The D200 is a hell of a camera but it's not for everyone, the D200 will make awesome pictures but it's not a camera for the inexperienced, the D70, 20-30D will make better shots for amateurs, If your serious and commited and you know what your doing or have some camera orientation the D200 will be up to the job and more. If you do get a D200 take in consideration lens cost, just the body is $1700 and a good lens to take advantage to the camera such as a vr 18-200 at least $800. If you have nikon gear/lenses go with nikon, if you have neither look at the prices of the lenses of both brands and decide wich is cost efficient/quality for the money according to your needs. Lenses you keep forever but the body will eventually go and get replaced. Seeying your budget your closer to a D70S/20-30D range if you can spring for a lens 200D all the way.
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Old May 24, 2006, 8:54 AM   #9
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Good point about lens cost Ellover009!

Althoug I would caution - the 18-200 while a highly regarded new lens is not a good sporting lens solution. With a max aperture of 5.6 you'll run into focus issues if lighting gets poor - and it can get poor even in the middle of the day.
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