Ok, I want to buy a DSLR... But I need LOTS of help.

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by 12991, May 26, 2007.

  1. 12991 macrumors member

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    #1
    Im buying a dslr, i got a powershot s3 a few months ago, but im growing more interested in photography, so i want to buy a dslr.

    I think ive narrowed it down to 2, the Nikon D40 and D50.

    I think i would want one kit lens (18-55mm)

    One zoom 70-300mm

    And then, i love to take moon shots... i want to get the best shots humanly possible, thats how much i love them. So, can i take pictures through a telescope? Cant i buy a celestron telescope and get a tring and attach my camera and take pics? Can i do this with the d40 or D50??

    will it work with:
    http://www.amazon.com/Celestron-Nex...407954?ie=UTF8&s=photo&qid=1180226811&sr=1-22
    http://www.amazon.com/Celestron-Nex...407954?ie=UTF8&s=photo&qid=1180226835&sr=1-51

    and im guessing the d40 is better for a beginner, but the d50 is more compatible with the older lenses. I think i may be leaning towards the d50 though. Im young, so i dont want to spend more than 1500 total (including the telescope) and i want to be able to keep everything for atleast 10 years. Thanks
     
  2. cgratti macrumors 6502a

    cgratti

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    #2
    That will work fine, just make sure you get the correct t-ring to attach to your telescope.
     
  3. epicwelshman macrumors 6502a

    epicwelshman

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    #3
    The D40/D50 question is tricky. The D50 can work with older lenses, yes. But the D40/x has newer technology that, frankly, gives better image quality. It's also of course fully supported by Nikon, whereas they're phasing out the D50. Honestly, unless you want/have access to older non AF-S lenses, I'd say go with the D40/x... while it has a beginner mode I suppose, it's a fully capable dSLR. I'm no beginner and my D40x never goes off manual or one of the priority settings.
     
  4. 12991 thread starter macrumors member

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    #4
    Thanks... i think I'm going to get the D40. I should be able to print good quality 8x10 or 6x8 right??
     
  5. M@lew macrumors 68000

    M@lew

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    #5
    The D40 can pretty much print anything A4 or lower. If you want to print large prints, get the D40X, which has 10.2 megapixels instead of 6.
     
  6. Westside guy macrumors 601

    Westside guy

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    #6
    The answer to this is yes - as long as you take good pictures. :D

    I don't know that I agree with the previous poster regarding the choice between the D40 and D50, although I'm unclear if you're referring to the original D40 or the more recent D40x. They're both good cameras, though.

    If you get the D40, be sure the 70-300 zoom you buy is the newest AF-S version - otherwise the autofocus won't work with the D40 since that camera doesn't have its own autofocus motor (which the D50 does have).

    You can probably get decent moon photos at 300mm if you use a tripod, but they will still be only a small part of the frame - I'm guessing you understand that. But if it's that important to you, and if you can save up money over time... I'd suggest you at least consider getting just the 18-70mm lens for now (which is better than the 18-55), and saving your pennies for the 80-400mm AF lens. Of course that's $1200+ ;) and also would require you purchase the D50 not the D40.
     
  7. 12991 thread starter macrumors member

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    #7
    Yeah... i was considering the d40x, but i just realized how much more expensive it is than the d40, and just over a few MPs. Not worth it for me atleast, i rather get some filters or a new lens.

    Are filters even worth it? i was thinking about getting the Hoya 4 filter introductory set, or is it just a gimmick?
     
  8. Westside guy macrumors 601

    Westside guy

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    #8
    For the vast majority of people who are buying a D40/x or a D50, it is very doubtful that 10MP will yield pictures with any more detail than a 6MP camera - no matter how much you're blowing the photos up. The limitation in one's photos is likely to be the person's technique rather than the pixel count. In fact a smaller pixel count, which means larger individual pixel size, is more forgiving of less-than-optimal technique. Not to mention that there are real-world situations where a larger pixel count/smaller pixel diameter can actually interfere with overall resolution, thanks to diffraction.

    Edit: Just want to be clear that there's nothing wrong with having more pixels; but the difference between 6MP and 10MP isn't as cut-and-dried as some people seem to think. There are advantages to having more, smaller pixels; and there are advantages to having fewer, larger pixels.
     
  9. epicwelshman macrumors 6502a

    epicwelshman

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    #9
    From what I've heard, the "must have" filters are a UV (mainly for lens protection) and a circular polarizer. Make sure they're good quality, i.e., don't go cheap, because it's another piece of glass in front of your lens - you want quality.

    The D50 vs D40/x issue is a sticky one. Some people see the D40 as a true upgrade from the D50, and see the future in AF-S lenses. However, some see it as a sidegrade, and some even as a downgrade. I suppose it depends what you need. The only lenses I'll be buying are AF-S, so the D50's focus motor had no use for me. The D40 also has newer sensor technology, which (at default settings) would create higher quality images.

    That being said, I know many people who have and love the D50, and take wonderful photos. I just decided personally to go for the D40x.
     
  10. 12991 thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 3, 2007
    #10
    I'm assuming that sunpak is bad. Its only 10 bucks. But the reason Im considering it is because its at bestbuy, and thats where ill be getting my d40 tomorrow.

    Also, what size filter do i need, 52mm right? Will a 52mm work on all d40 lenses?? And anyone have any experience with sunpak?

    http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage...lter&lp=12&type=product&cp=1&id=1134701342463

    They also have a company called tocad. Thanks
     
  11. Westside guy macrumors 601

    Westside guy

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    #11
    This will vary from person to person - it really depends what kind of shots you like to make. I think a decent circular polarizer (CP) is good to have - of course that's going to run you somewhere around $100 (Nikon makes a great CP that costs something like $130).

    If you choose to get filters, don't make my mistake! Don't automatically buy your first filters at the size to fit your current lens. :D Instead, pick a filter size that will work on all your eventual lenses, and just use step-up rings ($15) so that all your lenses can use those filters. I've (finally) started standardizing on 77mm filters, since that's the largest thread Nikon uses. A 77mm circular polarizer is a little more expensive than a 52mm or 62mm CP, of course; but it costs less than having to buy a second CP when you find your second lens doesn't have the same filter size as your first!
     
  12. 12991 thread starter macrumors member

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  13. Westside guy macrumors 601

    Westside guy

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    #13
    I don't know - I haven't even heard of them. If you want to buy a protective UV or Skylight filter for the front of your lens, I think you should probably stick with the name brands such as Hoya (get the HMC version, which costs a few dollars more) or B+W. And this is just my personal opinion (heh, like the rest isn't?), but - when it comes to buying a filter like a circular polarizer, I think you're better off spending more money to buy a quality product such as Nikon, B+W, or even Singh-Ray (talk about pricey!).

    Remember that, when you're adding even just a protective filter to your lens, you're adding an additional optical element. Poor quality filters will yield poor quality photographs.

    Edit: Man I'm terrible about adding stuff after the fact. :D If you are going to get a protective UV filter for your lens - in that particular case you do want to buy the filter to fit the lens (as opposed to my advice in a previous post, about maintaining one set of filters and using step-up rings).
     
  14. Plymouthbreezer macrumors 601

    Plymouthbreezer

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    #14
    This question is tricky! I like the D50 over the newer models. Buuut....

    Honestly, if you don't have any $$ already invested in older Nikkor glass, I'd go with the D40, or even the D40x.

    The D40 is lighter and like other's have said, is newer technology. In the same breath, a beginner (and for that sake, even many pros) won't notice a difference in image quality between the D40 or a D50 - both will "take good pictures" (but as any photographer knows, the body matters little, the glass more, but most of all, the person snapping the shutter).
     
  15. M@lew macrumors 68000

    M@lew

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    #15
    Also the D40 is very good for beginners because it has a graphical representation on the display to show you what the different aperture's etc. mean and a little "?" which you can push to find out what each function of the camera does.
     
  16. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #16
    Wow, that's actually quite sensible, particularly for a beginner. :)


    And I've printed many 8" x 10", 8" x 12", and even 10" x 15" print from a 6 MP camera, and they come out very well. :) Of course, I didn't print any 10" x 15" photos that weren't tack sharp, or cropped. The 8" x 12" prints came out as good as the 8" x 10" or 6" x 8", IMO.
     
  17. compuwar macrumors 601

    compuwar

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    #17
    If you got the D50, you could get an 80-200/2.8 zoom for dirt-cheap and have a fast and good lens. Either camera will be fine up to 8x10, possibly 11x14. If it were me, I'd go with the D50 because of the lens compatibility (I rarely buy lenses new.) I think 10 years isn't realistic for a digital body- 6-8 is probably a more realistic lifetime.
     
  18. cube macrumors G5

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    #18
    The D50 takes very good pictures and you can enjoy access to many good used lens deals.
     
  19. 12991 thread starter macrumors member

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    #19
    I don't want 10 years for the body, more 10 years for the lenses. Because i dont have any lenses, I don't really care. The only one single concern i have is that the d40 doesnt have an affordable, fast, wide angle, prime lens. Thats what i like about the d50, i could get a 1.8, 50mm for 120ish. With the d40, I could get that but I would have to manual focus. I dont know, is so tough to decide.
     
  20. compuwar macrumors 601

    compuwar

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    #20
    You'll get better than 10yrs with almost any decent lens. Get the D50 and don't look back!
     
  21. 12991 thread starter macrumors member

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    #21
    I don't see the point in me getting a d50 really though. I think that AF-S will become the future and i will need to buy into it anyway. I always like having the latest and greatest, so the d40 seems better for me. I really will stick with the kit lens for atleast a month or two. Then get a zoom, then at the end of the year get a prime. I think thats all i really need, considering im still a teenager. I dont want to be blowing all the money that im not earning on camera stuff that ill just be doing as a hobby. D40 seems better for beginners for some reason.

    I think that either one I buy, Ill love it. So I think im leaning towards the d40 because atleast i know it will be covered under warranty, Ill have the newest one, and it is smaller, and Ill be walking around with it, so its nicer to have a smaller one, even if its only a little bit smaller. D40 just seems perfect for me. I really dont want to get a used d50 for the same price, just doesnt make sense to me. The only real advantage Ill have is a bigger selection of prime lenses. Because i know what zoom lens im getting. And sigma has a good prime lens, even though its expensive... I think itll be worth it. Otherwise, i can just manually focus with the other prime lenses
     
  22. cube macrumors G5

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    #22
    Sometimes the latest is not the greatest when it comes to lenses. But I guess for that one really needs a D200 at least to be more completely covered.
     
  23. Plymouthbreezer macrumors 601

    Plymouthbreezer

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    #23
    Hum? What do you mean? :confused:
     
  24. cube macrumors G5

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    #24
    Sometimes when a lens is replaced by something newer it happens that the optics are better in the older version.

    The D200 is the cheapest Nikon which meters with AI, AI-S and E lenses.
     
  25. BobCham macrumors newbie

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    May 31, 2007
    #25
    But What about the T-ring question?

    Hi,

    I've just read this thread, as I am searching for a tring for my D40 to connect it to a spotting scope. (and later a full telescope).

    While you all have had great responses to the 50/40 question, the initial question has gone unanswered ... Does the D40 have a tring?

    I have searched all the 'normal' places and come up empty. The only tring for Nikon I can find is the the '35 mm body'. Since the D40, 80, and 200 all use the new lenses I don't think the general tring for SLR will fit the D40.

    Any comments or links to a tring for the D40 family?

    BTW - I'm a complete newbee, Just got the D40 today, before that I've had a 2mp HP camera for about 10 years, and before that a 35mm full automatic Cannon. I'm wanting to get a little more serious and start doing manual ISO controlling, so its now time for me to find subject mater that doesn't move, and take 1 shot of each permutation to learn how to set everything :) ... Seriously, I'm completely green but willing.

    Thanks, Bob Cham.
     

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