D300 aftermarket grips?
This afternoon I made a mistake and went snooping on eBay. Long and short of it is that I accidentally ended up with a nice looking D300 for less than I can sell my current D200 for. However, it doesn't have an accessory grip, which I've really gotten used to on my D200. I started snooping eBay again and I see all these aftermarket grips for considerably less than the Nikon grip.
Has anyone ever used one of the aftermarket grips and are they worth a spit? Any chance of the tripod mount screw pulling out or something else goofy? Or just pony up the bucks for the genuine Nikon unit? Bear in mind that I'm a light camera user these days....
Thanks for any info.
I have both. I bought the cheepie and then got worried it would pull off my cam as I use an Rstrap. I then bought the legitimate one and the switches are marginally better and I believe it to be sturdier (I'm pretty confident the metal housing screw runs through the grip and so my heavy cam isn't dangling off cheep plastic.)
I haven't gotten round to e baying my dodgy plastic jobie but even if you wanted it the freight from Aus would probably equal the price of you buying direct from China.
AFAIK the factory one (which I have had on my D300 for 3 or 4 years) has no metal housing its all plastic. When you take the batteries and battery carrier out there is virtually no weight left in it.
I ran mine with a Rapid strap connected via a Manfrotto adapter with my 70-200VR attached for at least 2 years sometimes with it hanging there for 6 hours a day with no issues. Since I went to Arca swiss mounting plates I can't use the Rapid strap any longer so I have now switched to an Optech sling strap similar but not the same as this one that allows me to connect the camera through the eyelets on the side that were designed to do just that, hold the weight of the camera. In a lot of ways the Optech strap is better than the Rapid strap it is way less bulky and has no magnets to attach to fence railings as you lean back against them.
The only issue I have had with my grip is that from time to time the camera forgets it's there and just registers the internal battery. All you do is remove and reattach the grip and it's fine. It's something to do with the battery sensor because the shutter release continues to work and I have seen comments about this on other sites.
Thanks for the info everyone. From my reading here and elsewhere, I think I'll give one of the Chinese grips a go and see what happens. There are several available, with batteries, for a pittance. Worth a shot anyway.
Can't hardly wait for the body. I've been loving the D200, but it'll be nice to step up to something with better high ISO performance. Don't know why all the karate tournaments have to be held in near darkness :)
Thanks for the offer DPR, but you're right. Freight to the Frozen North from Australia is a killer and it takes forever.
Kiwi - I've seen that mentioned elsewhere. Seems to be grip-independent as I've seen Nikon grip and aftermarket guys all with the same complaint.
I believe that iso1600 is the practical limit for the D300. I've been to iso3200 at times for night Soccer and it sucks imo. Really the shots are only any use for small web shots and looks best converted to grainy looking black and whites.
Originally Posted by DiamondSCattleCo
Thanks for the info. My lack of framing skill hurts me as I end up heavily cropping to get a nicely framed shot. This means that ISO 800 isn't really practical for the D200. My shots look ok as 5 x 7s, but noisy as hell digitally. So even if I can shoot at ISO 800, it'll be a big step up.
Originally Posted by K1W1
I only ever take my D300 to 1600 for indoor sports or concerts because I hate noise. Iso800 is ok as needed but 400 should be your base setting except for that Karate.
Go for it. I got one for my D7000, and it hasn't missed a beat. I know DPR was concerned regarding the structural integrity of the one he got for his D300, but I think there's good knock-offs and not-so-good knock-offs, so look at the product photos carefully.
Originally Posted by DiamondSCattleCo
With mine, which is marked "Battery Grip - For Nikon D7000 - Model No. D7000" and doesn't pretend to be made by Nikon, the fit is perfect and the switches and buttons have a good feel. In fact, I prefer the feel of the shutter button to the one on my D7000! The only cosmetic difference I can see between the genuine article and mine is that the little "open/close" graphic around the battery compartment release lever is in green paint and not white.
The genuine Nikon grip has a magnesium alloy inner shell and I'm pretty sure mine doesn't have that. However, there is an internal steel reinforcing strip running the length of the battery compartment. This strip also contains the tripod mount.
I had a really close look at a genuine Nikon grip in a camera store, and honestly, I really couldn't see or feel that much of a difference. In fact, I find it hard to justify paying Nikon's price when there's something 95% as good for around 20% of the price. That's why I say, go for it!
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I have just had a good look at my MB-D10 and there is no way it has an inner magnesium shell. Maybe other camera model grips do but not the one for the D300/D700 cameras.
The unit has an outer moulded solid plastic shell and an inner that is slightly rubberized presumably to ensure a tight rattle free fit for the batteries. Inside along the bottom there is a strip of metal that runs the entire length which I guess is there to spread the load when the camera and lens and grip are mounted to a bottom mount tripod attachment. There might or might not be another metal strip at the top (camera edge) of the grip but if there is it is moulded into the plastic and I'm not cutting my grip in half to find out whether there is one there.
I'm sorry if I misled you -- I was talking about the quality of non-genuine grips in general and the D7000-type grip (MB-D11) in particular. The genuine MB-D11 does have a magnesium shell (see http://www.nikonusa.com/en/Nikon-Pro...tery-Pack.html ). I wasn't meaning to imply the MB-D10 has a magnesium shell.
Be that as it may, I still believe non-genuine grips can be just as functional as the originals if you buy the right one. I think I was lucky in the one I bought from eBay; it's extremely rigid (unlike the Meike one I saw reviewed, which flexed easily when squeezed), and fits the camera perfectly. When it's screwed on, you can't budge it at all -- it becomes as one with the camera, giving a feeling of confidence. I'm very happy with it. I think the non-genuine MB-D10 that DPR bought for his D300 had a bit of looseness in the fit, and so he felt uneasy about trusting it to hold the weight of camera+lens when using his Rapid strap. Of course the trouble with buying off the 'net is you can't try before you buy. You just have to do your research and take the plunge. The advantage is you haven't done too much dough if your purchase turns out to be somewhat of a sour citrus.