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GRS0318
08-03-2007, 09:18 PM
I am getting my first DSLR and I am torn between the D40x and the D80. I'm running with a budget of about $950. I want something easy to use but would still like to get good quality pictures out of the camera. I have read that one of the problems with the D40 is the AF issues with older Nikon lenses. I do not have any old Nikon lenses so that won't be a problem for me. Another issue was the AF points in the viewfinder. The D40x offers 3 points while the D80 had, I believe 11(not sure). Thanks for your responses

Gregory

XaiLo
08-03-2007, 09:30 PM
If it's a choice between the D40x and the D80 then it's pretty simple D80. Now the D40 vs the D80 is a slightly different story. Two questions:

1. What has you torn between the two cameras?
2. What are you planning on shooting?

Rooz
08-04-2007, 05:29 AM
I am getting my first DSLR and I am torn between the D40x and the D80. I'm running with a budget of about $950. I want something easy to use but would still like to get good quality pictures out of the camera. I have read that one of the problems with the D40 is the AF issues with older Nikon lenses. I do not have any old Nikon lenses so that won't be a problem for me. Another issue was the AF points in the viewfinder. The D40x offers 3 points while the D80 had, I believe 11(not sure). Thanks for your responses

Gregory

the d40x only really offers the following advantages over the d40 - more MP and 0.5s faster fps. so...if you are aware of the lack of the internal focus motor and it doesn;t bother you, you are aware of the 3pt AF system and it doesn;t bother you and if you are a beginner to dslr then the d40 may be a great place for you to start by saving your money and getting great glass for the same price as a d80/ d40x kit.

d80
w/18-135mm kit lens
= $1150

OR

d40 w/18-55 kit lens (525)
+
nikkor 55-200 VR (250)
+
sb800 flash (315)

= $1090

OR

sell the kit lens for around $120, drop the sb800 flash and pick up the Sigma 18-50mm EX DC HSM Macro, (coming very soon), for around $420 and you have a pretty kick ass entry level kit for around $1075. as you learn and grow the d40 becomes a second body, (or sell it if you like), and the lens'/ accessories come with you to the next stage when you're ready.

i dunno, it sounds a pretty compelling argument for a beginner.

fionndruinne
08-04-2007, 12:57 PM
I'd recommend the D40 as well - it's such a great entry-level camera, and for the price it can't be beat. Add that 55-200mm VR lens to the very good 18-55mm kit lens, and you've got a great, lightweight and snappy kit for very little cash (in the DSLR world, at least).

If you want to take a leap, the D80 is worth the extra, but only for its advanced features, so it depends on how much you plan on doing with it.

GRS0318
08-04-2007, 02:52 PM
Yeah the AF points dont bother me and the older lenses don't. i was planning on getting the camera with the kit lense and getting a backpack and the 55-200mm and the 135mm plus a hot shoe flash.

fionndruinne
08-04-2007, 03:25 PM
I don't find the AF-points to be problematical at all, and a tap on the four-way controller easily switches between the three points (I always use single-point AF, so I can get the subject I actually want). It's a handy setup.

One thing I do find a lack of in the D40 is exposure bracketing - it can be a useful thing to have, but then it's easy enough to change Exposure comp in P mode, just hold down the rightmost of the two buttons next to the shutter release, and rotate the dial. Because I am messing around with HDR imaging, an auto exposure bracket feature would be nice, to eliminate camera movement, but it is not absolutely essential. And there has to be something to make it "budget entry-level". Nikon has wisely cut down on some advanced features rather than compromised on build, image or processing quality.

Rooz
08-04-2007, 04:54 PM
and the 135mm.

whch lens do you mean ?

GRS0318
08-04-2007, 07:45 PM
I am talking about the Zoom Wide Angle-Telephoto 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor Autofocus Lens. http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/449087-USA/Nikon_2162_18_135mm_f_3_5_5_6_ED_IF_AF_S.html

Rooz
08-04-2007, 08:52 PM
I am talking about the Zoom Wide Angle-Telephoto 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor Autofocus Lens. http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/449087-USA/Nikon_2162_18_135mm_f_3_5_5_6_ED_IF_AF_S.html

not really any point getting the 18-135 if you are getting the 55-200 though.

fionndruinne
08-05-2007, 03:49 PM
I agree, there's no point in getting the 18-135mm if you have the other lenses. The 18-135mm will not give you a better picture than the other lenses, in fact I'm guessing the 55-200mm @ 135mm will make for a sharper picture with less barrel distortion than the aforementioned lens. Plus there are many situations where the 18-135mm, at the telephoto end, might suffer from lack of VR, where the lighting is less than ideal.

GRS0318
08-05-2007, 09:51 PM
There is a window of opportunity. I can get a D200 camera body for 629 dollars should i do that instead?

Rooz
08-05-2007, 10:11 PM
There is a window of opportunity. I can get a D200 camera body for 629 dollars should i do that instead?

thats extremely cheap, if you're sure its reliable than absolutely. best semi-pro camera on the market bar none.

Donato777
08-06-2007, 03:44 AM
I agree, there's no point in getting the 18-135mm if you have the other lenses. The 18-135mm will not give you a better picture than the other lenses, in fact I'm guessing the 55-200mm @ 135mm will make for a sharper picture with less barrel distortion than the aforementioned lens. Plus there are many situations where the 18-135mm, at the telephoto end, might suffer from lack of VR, where the lighting is less than ideal.

I've read some excellent reviews for the 70-300VR as well and it offers even more reach, if you need it.
http://www.slrgear.com/reviews/showproduct.php/product/992/cat/13
http://www.fredmiranda.com/reviews/showproduct.php?product=315&sort=7&cat=28&page=1
Has anyone used this lens with the D40?

aparmley
08-06-2007, 08:36 AM
Since everyone is sounding off here I'll give it a go too.

If I were in your shoes I'd do what I could to get my hands on the D80 + 18-55 kit. If you need to save one more month or one more paycheck do it.

Thats my advice - Why the D80 over the D40x. Growth. If you take to photography like a lot of us the D80 will allow you to grow a lot as a photographer and for a longer period of time vs the D40x. This will allow you the time to purchase lenses and accessories that benefit who you are as a photographer. I'd fear that if you bought the D40X you'd be spending potential lens money on a body upgrade in the not too distant future (Trust me, I did it when I moved from the XT to the 30D because when I bought the XT I really wanted the 20D). So, IMHO, your better off getting the better body right now so you can then spend your time saving your money for better lens rather than being very tempted to upgrade to a new body. Once the body you do buy, say the D80, is replaced, you'll still have your lenses to use on the new body.

I think, just purely on a financial basis, you'll be better off paying a little more for a D80 kit then paying less for the D40X kit. Because, in 6-12 months you can add some good lenses to that and be better off than having the D40x, some dough in your pocket ready for some lenses but instead you choose the better body because you're tired of the limitations of the D40X.

Good luck.

thebac
08-06-2007, 02:31 PM
There is a window of opportunity. I can get a D200 camera body for 629 dollars should i do that instead?

http://www.dcresource.com/forums/showthread.php?t=14677

If you're getting a sweetheart deal from a friend, then never mind.

jcon
08-06-2007, 03:14 PM
I agree with everything Aparmley said.

As for the 70-300VR question. If I were in the market for that type of lens, the 70-300VR would be my hands down choice over the 55-200. Thats just me though.

I'm too lazy to look but will the 70-300VR autofocus on the D40?

Rooz
08-06-2007, 05:05 PM
I'm too lazy to look but will the 70-300VR autofocus on the D40?

yupp. af-s baby.

e_dawg
08-07-2007, 11:03 AM
A couple things to point out:

1. The D40x has a bit more dynamic range than the D80, according to IMAtest resutls from Imaging-Resource.com and dpreview.com and is considered one of the best dSLRs on the market for dymamic range after the Fuji S3 and S5 Pro models. Probably about half a stop better than most.

2. The 3 pt AF is actually pretty decent. In fact, it can outfocus the D80 at times with the 70-300/VR extended in low-light. The only thing the 3 pt AF may not do as well as the D80's is tracking moving subjects across the viewfinder.

3. One drawback to having such a compact body on the D40(x) is that it doesn't handle as well with bigger, heavier lenses like the 70-300/VR. It feels a little unbalanced and nose-heavy, and isn't as easy to hold with one hand as with the D80 due to the smaller grip. The D40 bodies work best with lenses up to the 18-200/VR and 55-200/VR lenses in size & weight. Bigger than that, and it doesn't feel right.

In fact, I purchased the D80 after being a happy user of the D40 mainly because it's more comfortable to use with bigger, heavier lenses -- not really due to improved performance.

4. The 18-135 would be a perfect all-purpose lens if it had VR and a little less chromatic aberration. It's very sharp, has a nice focal length range, and is smaller and lighter than the 18-200/VR. As it stands, I like having VR above ~55 mm.

5. If you want only one all-purpose lens, get the 18-200/VR. If you don't mind 2 lenses, the 18-55 and 55-200/VR combo is the best bang for the buck. If you need more telephoto reach, I would get the 18-55 and the 70-300/VR.

Mr. Magoo
08-07-2007, 01:13 PM
As for the 70-300VR question. If I were in the market for that type of lens, the 70-300VR would be my hands down choice over the 55-200. Thats just me though.

I have one for my D80. I've only seriously shot with it 3 days, but so far I'm quite happy with it.

jcon
08-07-2007, 03:10 PM
Share some pics and your personal experiences with it!

It sure is a wonderful lens!