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View Full Version : Nikon D50-any thoughts



Savannah
04-20-2005, 04:50 PM
Its new, ......... Can it compare to Canon's new XT? doubt it, but what do you think? Can't everyone just wait till Chirstmas and do this "new thing" only once a year...... Don't get me wrong. I like the new and how it keeps things moving forward, but Gee whizz, don't you just hate spending money on a DSLR only to have it worthless (1/2 price) in 6 months. I would like to feel like I'm shooting last years model only after owning it for a year....
Just my thougts and humble opinion.
:cool:

D70FAN
04-20-2005, 06:05 PM
Its new, ......... Can it compare to Canon's new XT? doubt it, but what do you think? Can't everyone just wait till Chirstmas and do this "new thing" only once a year...... Don't get me wrong. I like the new and how it keeps things moving forward, but Gee whizz, don't you just hate spending money on a DSLR only to have it worthless (1/2 price) in 6 months. I would like to feel like I'm shooting last years model only after owning it for a year....
Just my thougts and humble opinion.
:cool:

The D50 was not designed to compete with the XT (although except for the 8MP sensor it could probably hold its own), but more to compete with the 300D in the entry level market. I would be willing to bet that if they offer the body it will be in the $599 to $699 range. Since the kit lens is new I guess we will have to wait for opinions.

The D70 has been out for over a year, and Nikon is updating it with the D70s. I would speculate that Nikon has reworked the processor to do a better job with High ISO noise (1250 and above). Fortunately for those of us with the original the changes aren't dramatic enough to feel put out. Again we will have to wait to see if there were some dramatic "tweeks".

Should be fun.

Rex914
04-21-2005, 12:59 PM
The D50 was not designed to compete with the XT (although except for the 8MP sensor it could probably hold its own), but more to compete with the 300D in the entry level market. I would be willing to bet that if they offer the body it will be in the $599 to $699 range. Since the kit lens is new I guess we will have to wait for opinions.

The D70 has been out for over a year, and Nikon is updating it with the D70s. I would speculate that Nikon has reworked the processor to do a better job with High ISO noise (1250 and above). Fortunately for those of us with the original the changes aren't dramatic enough to feel put out. Again we will have to wait to see if there were some dramatic "tweeks".

Should be fun.

We wish.... If you do the math, the D50 could only be at most $180 less than $900 which is $720.

Places cite the body only price at $750 which sounds about right. It's still priced where it blows away any incentives of getting any of the 8XXX series (which are actually more expensive), but it's still a $100 extra over the Rebel.

JTL
04-21-2005, 01:49 PM
This will probably be one of my more inappropriate posts, but...

I think the D50 is a sucker play by a bunch of misguided marketers who have lost touch with the market and are hoping to suck in a bunch of noobs by using (more like mis-using) the Nikon name...further damaging their brand in the process...

If Nikon were serious about making cameras, they would be competing against the Canon 20D...not the dReb 300 which has already effectively been replaced. Strictly bush league. I have lost any respect for them.

aparmley
04-21-2005, 02:31 PM
Thats a very good point. I was just thinking... From a business perspective, where is the big money? is it in the semi pro to pro market or is it in the entry-level DSLR market? If a company could produce a camera in the entry level DSLR market and if it were capable enough to attract more of the PnSers and combined with those already looking for that entry-level DSLR then there may be more profits to be made with that type of camera rather than a direct 20D competitor? Perhaps Nikon is betting that those who purchase the D50, will buy one lens, realize they need one or two more and uh-oh now we have a consumer with multiple lenses compatible with our Nikon Cameras... These are not professional photographers so the very expensive switch to another companys products most likely will not be feasible, so when the D50 no longer is meeting the users requirments it will be easier to upgrade to another Nikon camera then to start over with another camera and having to buy those lenses again. I don't know its very strange. I agree with you totally, its not making a lot of since right now why Nikon has released the D50. I am just trying to figure it out, also...

JTL
04-21-2005, 02:50 PM
Perhaps Nikon is betting that those who purchase the D50, will buy one lens, realize they need one or two more and uh-oh now we have a consumer with multiple lenses compatible with our Nikon Cameras...You make a very good point as well. It could very well be a loss-leader or up-sell strategic move...the camera as the razor and the lenses as the blades....maybe assuming that once an investment is made in the lenses, they can up-sell them a more expensive camera down the road. But, wouldn't it be easier just to build a more compelling camera in the first place? That's where I think they've gone off the tracks...

aparmley
04-21-2005, 03:05 PM
Yep! I agree... Maybe...just maybe thats next?? Hook em with the D50... fry em with the Dxx. LOL I have no clue... :D

Rex914
04-21-2005, 04:13 PM
Thats a very good point. I was just thinking... From a business perspective, where is the big money? I agree with you totally, its not making a lot of since right now why Nikon has released the D50. I am just trying to figure it out, also...

The big money is in the whole DSLR market. Even for the cheaper models, the profits are still quite large.

The D50 is sort of aimed at the 300D but not entirely. Put it like this: if Canon did a full revision to the 300D (as in make it even more like the 10D), that's what it would be like. I don't see why the D70s was released if it has minimal changes (even the firmware change is nullified since all D70 owners get it). That's a marketing ploy right there. We all want the D200. Where is it?

D70FAN
04-21-2005, 04:49 PM
This will probably be one of my more inappropriate posts, but...

I think the D50 is a sucker play by a bunch of misguided marketers who have lost touch with the market and are hoping to suck in a bunch of noobs by using (more like mis-using) the Nikon name...further damaging their brand in the process...

If Nikon were serious about making cameras, they would be competing against the Canon 20D...not the dReb 300 which has already effectively been replaced. Strictly bush league. I have lost any respect for them.

Not inappropriate at all.

Like everone here you have a right to your opinion. And I'm not doubting your sincerity, but I find myself struggling a little with what you are trying to say. So please don't take this as a critique as it is not meant to be. I just would like to put this into perspective...

...So, what it sounds like you are saying is, that consumers won't benefit from competition in the low end of the dSLR market? And Nikon shouldn't have degraded their brand name by playing in the low-end Canon 300D pool?

The $799 Canon 300D hasn't been replaced, and Canon is definately keeping it in the lineup as their "entry level" dSLR. Nikons objective with the D50? Introduce an "entry level" dSLR by offering a good quality, higher performance, camera and lens, combo at a competitive pricepoint ($899) to the 300D. So I don't see a sellout here, just more consumer choices.

On the 20D:

If Nikon had introduced an 8MP (D80?), for the same price as the 20D, would you have run out and bought one? Would I? Would anyone? Probably not.

So what is Nikons incentive to design a new 8MP version of the, still very successful, D70? Picture quality? Marginally. Speed? Again, not a real big issue, as only a handfull of people need more than 3 fps.

So there you have it. The two actual advantages of the 20D over the D70...
...Arguably better high ISO image performance... and faster continuous shooting.

Seriously, the fact that you are so deeply displeased with Nikon, as a company, means that they need to do a better job of positioning their dSLR line.

As an ending thought: Kudos to Nikon in offering a firmware upgrade to bring my "old" D70 up to par with the D70s.

jeisner
04-21-2005, 06:05 PM
They introduce models like the D50 to entice prosumer P&S buyers to buy into their lens system. The consumer buys the D50 a couple of lenses and if they stick with DSLR they will continue with the Nikon (in this case) brand as they have a lens investment in that brand.... It is a sound business decision in my opinion... As has been said releasing an 8MP model gains VERY little, I think Nikon has done the smart/right thing, its a growing market and you need to snap up as many of the converts as possible... The uneducated who fall for the marketing rubbish that MPs are everything may go Canon, but is it worth the investment costs to chase those customers?? maybe it is? but it is a stupid marketing game!!!

And yes unlike some other large camera company they are not pissing off their current customer base by completely outdating their cameras after 6 months, they are actually actively including them by giving them a firmware update, so the difference between the d70 and d70s is less.... This is one of the reasons I like Pentax they dont leave their customer base high and dry, and I think it is good that Nikon also seem to respect their current customers.

JTL
04-23-2005, 12:29 PM
...So, what it sounds like you are saying is, that consumers won't benefit from competition in the low end of the dSLR market? And Nikon shouldn't have degraded their brand name by playing in the low-end Canon 300D pool? Good point. I'm just wondering about trying to compete at the low-end and only the low-end (and, in my opinion, doing a bad job of it). As Rex has pointed out, the money is (or soon about to be) in the low-end...so the D50 looks like a good business/marketing move. But, I'm willing to bet that it's only appeal will be to those already pre-disposed to the Nikon brand who can't afford anything else. And for those people, it's a gift from Nikon. But, how many Canon (or any other brand) users do you think would cross-over to it? My guess is not many. It's just not a compelling enough package for anyone with a clue. I guess all this bothers me because I grew up with this romantic notion of Nikon being the ne plus ultra...and I don't think they are any more. I grew up on Nikon SLRs...but when you sit down to spend your money...to me (and obviously to a lot of others) the Canon dSLRs just stack up better...up and down the entire line. And, they seem to have a finger on the pulse of the market much, much better.

All of this debate is good because we are the people who actually buy these things and it helps to hear other opinions to see all sides...thanks for taking the time...you've given me some things to think about...

Jredtugboat
04-23-2005, 12:49 PM
As others have said, the point of the D50 might well lie in its upsell capacity. No doubt there is a lot of money to be made in the entry-level dSLR market, and this camera could fill that niche nicely. At this point they're about the same price now as good, high end "prosumer" all in ones were two years ago. The market bit then, and it will bite again.

How would I feel with the D50? I'd look at it the same way I'd look at how I'd feel with the Eos 20D: it's an entry point, a chance to learn the camera and buy lenses. In a way, a camera is like a dog: a dog is a life support system for a nose, and a camera is a life support system for lenses.

I still haven't actually gotten my hands ON a 20D. However, I did get to fool around with a D70 not long ago and it was sweet! I have small hands so, like chubby markers for kids, the camera just felt "right" in my hands.

My next question is: would it make sense to get the (original) D70 and get the firmware upgrade?

D70FAN
04-23-2005, 06:38 PM
As others have said, the point of the D50 might well lie in its upsell capacity. No doubt there is a lot of money to be made in the entry-level dSLR market, and this camera could fill that niche nicely. At this point they're about the same price now as good, high end "prosumer" all in ones were two years ago. The market bit then, and it will bite again.

How would I feel with the D50? I'd look at it the same way I'd look at how I'd feel with the Eos 20D: it's an entry point, a chance to learn the camera and buy lenses. In a way, a camera is like a dog: a dog is a life support system for a nose, and a camera is a life support system for lenses.

I still haven't actually gotten my hands ON a 20D. However, I did get to fool around with a D70 not long ago and it was sweet! I have small hands so, like chubby markers for kids, the camera just felt "right" in my hands.

My next question is: would it make sense to get the (original) D70 and get the firmware upgrade?

In my opinion. If you are considering the D70 you might as well buy the D70s. Just the new 2" LCD is a nice upgrade. I will probably buy a D70s body later this year and give the D70 a break as the backup body.

D70FAN
04-23-2005, 07:45 PM
Good point. I'm just wondering about trying to compete at the low-end and only the low-end (and, in my opinion, doing a bad job of it). As Rex has pointed out, the money is (or soon about to be) in the low-end...so the D50 looks like a good business/marketing move. But, I'm willing to bet that it's only appeal will be to those already pre-disposed to the Nikon brand who can't afford anything else. And for those people, it's a gift from Nikon. But, how many Canon (or any other brand) users do you think would cross-over to it? My guess is not many. It's just not a compelling enough package for anyone with a clue. I guess all this bothers me because I grew up with this romantic notion of Nikon being the ne plus ultra...and I don't think they are any more. I grew up on Nikon SLRs...but when you sit down to spend your money...to me (and obviously to a lot of others) the Canon dSLRs just stack up better...up and down the entire line. And, they seem to have a finger on the pulse of the market much, much better.

All of this debate is good because we are the people who actually buy these things and it helps to hear other opinions to see all sides...thanks for taking the time...you've given me some things to think about...

I guess we will just have to see what the D50 is really like when it comes out in July.

Your statement shows that Nikon marketing needs an good swift kick in the tail, as their dSLR products are second to none, but they are not out there promoting them, but just using 10 year old strategies and tactics.

That is where Nikon sucks. :( The cameras are great. :)

jamison55
04-24-2005, 04:56 AM
...So, what it sounds like you are saying is, that consumers won't benefit from competition in the low end of the dSLR market? And Nikon shouldn't have degraded their brand name by playing in the low-end Canon 300D pool?

The $799 Canon 300D hasn't been replaced, and Canon is definately keeping it in the lineup as their "entry level" dSLR. Nikons objective with the D50? Introduce an "entry level" dSLR by offering a good quality, higher performance, camera and lens, combo at a competitive pricepoint ($899) to the 300D. So I don't see a sellout here, just more consumer choices.

I agree with George on this one, but as usual Nikon is trying to play catch-up. When I bought my first DSLR, price was my major concern (along with image quality). I bought a DReb, not because I thought it a better camera than the D70, but because it was $300 cheaper without sacrificing image quality. If the D50 had been on the playing field then, I might be a Nikon user today... Nikon's strategy seems to be to let Canon take the risks, and, when it seems to be working out, come out with a competing product. The weakest part of their company is definitely their marketing division. Ever since Canon hired Agassi, they have had a clear lead in marketing (and thus in the minds of the a large portion of the population!)


On the 20D:

If Nikon had introduced an 8MP (D80?), for the same price as the 20D, would you have run out and bought one? Would I? Would anyone? Probably not.

I don't think Nikon should have updated the D70, but instead the D100. Give D70 users a clear upgrade path. On another forum I frequent, many of the participants have gone from a DReb to a 20D to a 1D (with Canon pocketing all of the $$$). I think when it comes down to it, many people see the D70 as Nikon's "amateur" DSLR - akin to the DReb. The D100 was Prosumer - akin to the 10D/20D. An 8MP D200 with the innovative features and superior handling that the 20D has is markedly missing from the Nikon lineup. It is a pretty big jump from a D70 to a D2H...


So what is Nikons incentive to design a new 8MP version of the, still very successful, D70? Picture quality? Marginally. Speed? Again, not a real big issue, as only a handfull of people need more than 3 fps.

So there you have it. The two actual advantages of the 20D over the D70...
...Arguably better high ISO image performance... and faster continuous shooting.

I finally had a chance to actually shoot with a D70 (and D2H). I occasionally contract out to a large national studio that shoots college grads and races. This year I worked the Boston Marathon. In the morning, I wandered around Athlete's Villiage with (the studio's) D70 and an SB800. In the afternoon I shot the finish line from the press bridge with a D2H.

I liked the way the D70 felt in my hands: solid. I liked the way the SB800 with the high flash sync speed performed in the bright morning sun. I liked the slightly more saturated colors that the Nikon produced at default settings. I liked that you could push two buttons and reformat the card.

Despite all of this, I can't bring myself to like the D70. I think Canon has a better handle on how photographers use cameras, and design their controls to make it as easy as possible. I hated the way that Nikon forced you to have two hands on the camera to change many of the important settings (like ISO) - on my 20D I can change all of the important settings with just one hand. It took me 15 minutes (and three other photographers) to figure out how to change the AF point (that dumb little unlabeled "lock" switch being the culprit). So aside from the faster FPS and the high ISO performance (and don't forget the custom WB color space controls - HUGE for pros who shoot jpegs), the 20D wins in my book on usability.

The D2H was a bit better. I really liked the vertical shutter controls, and they kept the buttons down to a minimum - much more usable - but again, Canon has a clear edge in the Pro-DSLR market, with a superior 45 point AF system - and larger sensors. I think Nikon is really going to regret their decision to stick with 1.5CF sensors on their Dxx line, as we all know how sensor size impacts image quality. The full frame 16mp sensor on the Canon 1Ds Mk 2, is getting Medium Format wedding pros to convert to digital. Nikon has no solution in that arena...and won't as long as they stubbornly cling to smaller sensors. BTW the D2H I used failed a number of times, producing a black image. I think it was a memory card failure, but...

Bottom line Canon seems to have a better grasp on what photographers want in a camera, and is willing to take a risk to be "first to market" with innovations. Nikon seems content to let Canon forge the path, and follow behind with good, safe, products. Seems like Canon's business plan is a little stronger...but what do I know...?

Epilogue:
On the press bridge at the finish line of the Boston Marathon, there were photographers from every major news outlet in MA, and many national (and international) oulets as well. Everyone was digital. I would estimate that a good 85% of the lenses were white...(and the six of us made up half of the remaining 20%). Folks that take pictures for a living are choosing Canon...marketing...? or features they need?

D70FAN
04-24-2005, 09:25 PM
I agree with George on this one, but as usual Nikon is trying to play catch-up. When I bought my first DSLR, price was my major concern (along with image quality). I bought a DReb, not because I thought it a better camera than the D70, but because it was $300 cheaper without sacrificing image quality. If the D50 had been on the playing field then, I might be a Nikon user today... Nikon's strategy seems to be to let Canon take the risks, and, when it seems to be working out, come out with a competing product. The weakest part of their company is definitely their marketing division. Ever since Canon hired Agassi, they have had a clear lead in marketing (and thus in the minds of the a large portion of the population!)



I don't think Nikon should have updated the D70, but instead the D100. Give D70 users a clear upgrade path. On another forum I frequent, many of the participants have gone from a DReb to a 20D to a 1D (with Canon pocketing all of the $$$). I think when it comes down to it, many people see the D70 as Nikon's "amateur" DSLR - akin to the DReb. The D100 was Prosumer - akin to the 10D/20D. An 8MP D200 with the innovative features and superior handling that the 20D has is markedly missing from the Nikon lineup. It is a pretty big jump from a D70 to a D2H...



I finally had a chance to actually shoot with a D70 (and D2H). I occasionally contract out to a large national studio that shoots college grads and races. This year I worked the Boston Marathon. In the morning, I wandered around Athlete's Villiage with (the studio's) D70 and an SB800. In the afternoon I shot the finish line from the press bridge with a D2H.

I liked the way the D70 felt in my hands: solid. I liked the way the SB800 with the high flash sync speed performed in the bright morning sun. I liked the slightly more saturated colors that the Nikon produced at default settings. I liked that you could push two buttons and reformat the card.

Despite all of this, I can't bring myself to like the D70. I think Canon has a better handle on how photographers use cameras, and design their controls to make it as easy as possible. I hated the way that Nikon forced you to have two hands on the camera to change many of the important settings (like ISO) - on my 20D I can change all of the important settings with just one hand. It took me 15 minutes (and three other photographers) to figure out how to change the AF point (that dumb little unlabeled "lock" switch being the culprit). So aside from the faster FPS and the high ISO performance (and don't forget the custom WB color space controls - HUGE for pros who shoot jpegs), the 20D wins in my book on usability.

The D2H was a bit better. I really liked the vertical shutter controls, and they kept the buttons down to a minimum - much more usable - but again, Canon has a clear edge in the Pro-DSLR market, with a superior 45 point AF system - and larger sensors. I think Nikon is really going to regret their decision to stick with 1.5CF sensors on their Dxx line, as we all know how sensor size impacts image quality. The full frame 16mp sensor on the Canon 1Ds Mk 2, is getting Medium Format wedding pros to convert to digital. Nikon has no solution in that arena...and won't as long as they stubbornly cling to smaller sensors. BTW the D2H I used failed a number of times, producing a black image. I think it was a memory card failure, but...

Bottom line Canon seems to have a better grasp on what photographers want in a camera, and is willing to take a risk to be "first to market" with innovations. Nikon seems content to let Canon forge the path, and follow behind with good, safe, products. Seems like Canon's business plan is a little stronger...but what do I know...?

Epilogue:
On the press bridge at the finish line of the Boston Marathon, there were photographers from every major news outlet in MA, and many national (and international) oulets as well. Everyone was digital. I would estimate that a good 85% of the lenses were white...(and the six of us made up half of the remaining 20%). Folks that take pictures for a living are choosing Canon...marketing...? or features they need?

As always, good points. Some I agree with and some I don't. My exceptions are that I think the Canon 20D and XT were in direct response to the D70.

Not sure I agree with the D2X opinion as well, but I haven't used one yet, so what do I know? Looks good on paper. It would seem to me that in a studio environment that noise due to high ISO is not so critical so a 12MP APS-C CMOS sensor should do fine. Add to that the capability to switch to a 2X crop 6MP 8fps mode for sports and action photography, and you have a pretty nifty 2-in-1 pro grade camera with a ton of other fetures including 802.11G capability. I think Nikon, for better or worse, is marching to their own beat.

Other than the 20D and the 1Ds my Canon experience is limited, as it is with Nikon pro gear with the exception of the D1X and the D2H. All four of these cameras were terrific, and I can't really afford any of them. So my D70 is still the best I have found in my budget zone.

The bottom line is: The D70 is all the camera I need. I don't make my living at photography, although I make a few pence from my efforts. If those of you out there making your livelyhood think Canon is the better way to go, then who am I to argue?

The race is far from over, and Sony has been known to make a pretty decent sensor. Is full frame in the future? Why not? 22MP? They can do that. They already know the pixel size characteristics. The question is; does Nikon marketing and management have a clue?

For those yet undecided, Canon is just one of many good choices, and not necessarily the best in each class, so buy what suites you, not necessarily what's popular. There will always be a better camera.