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2questions - new SLR and a lens question
Okay, i'm about to buy a Digital SLR, price maximum 1300 euros..

I've been looking into the cameras of interest and tested them..

The first dSLR is Canon 400D. It takes good photos but I think it was too slow on focusing and viewing pictures, and it felt so plastic in the hand..

The second is the Nikon D80. This one really felt a lot better in the hand but there was no battery so I couldn't test taking photos with it..

My question:.

1. Which of these cameras do you suggest? (Mainly for landscape/general photography). Is the Nikon worth the 200 more?.

2. What lens(es) should I buy to the camera? Should I buy kit or body only? What I really want is a wide-angle lens with some zoom capabilities, and maybe a good zoom lens. So i'm thinking for instance a nikkor 18-70mm and a 70-200mm. These should not cost too much. But I just can't decide if I should buy a 12-24mm, and a 70-200mm! there are so many lenses  and is the lens that comes with the body at all worth to even have?.

3. I have an approximately 20 years old Minolta lens, it's a MINOLTA AF 70-210mm 1:3.5-4.5. Will this fit to a Nikon or a Canon or neither? Because when it was used back in the old days, it fitted a nikon..

Thanks in advance!..

Comments (16)

I think you are going about it in the right way. Decide how much you want to spend and what type of photography you are interested in. Then go put the camera in your hand. If you don't like how it feels, don't get it. The D80 is a fine camera. You might want to look at trying to find a still new Canon 30d.

My other suggestion would be to look at what lenses you want. When you pick a camera you are really investing in the whole system. When it comes down to it, the glass is every bit as important as the camera and I think most people would say it was more so. I think many people upgrade their cameras over time but typically hang on to their lens collection. The glass becomes the longer term investment.

Many people have been purchasing Nikon not because the D80 feels better than the 400d but because they want the Nikon 18-200VR lens. Lens design has improved a lot in 20 years, I wouldn't invest much energy in that old Minolta. Sorry if this is a bit long winded. Good luck...

Comment #1

Hi ojjo.

....My question:.

1. Which of these cameras do you suggest? (Mainly forlandscape/general photography). Is the Nikon worth the 200 more?.

I would not decide based only on the body price. Most important is, how good you will become familiar with all the wheels, knobs and the menus. Take the time and try 400D and D80 intensivly. Find out, which one is more logical for you. Both will do their job. I know some fellows, who bought the battery grip together with their 400D to have a better handling..

2. What lens(es) should I buy to the camera? Should I buy kit or bodyonly? What I really want is a wide-angle lens with some zoomcapabilities, and maybe a good zoom lens. So i'm thinking forinstance a nikkor 18-70mm and a 70-200mm. These should not cost toomuch. But I just can't decide if I should buy a 12-24mm, and a70-200mm! there are so many lenses  and is the lens that comes withthe body at all worth to even have?.

As a Nikon user I can only suggest a D80 line-up:.

The Nikkor 18-70mm f3.5-4.5 is a very good and fast kit lens. You will save more than 100 , if you buy the kit. The pro-grade alternative is the Nikkor 17-55mm f2.8 for more than 1.200If you would like to use f2.8 lenses, then a Tamron 17-50mm f2.8 would be a choice..

Wide angle: Have a look at Tokina 12-24mm f4. Optically it is regarded on par with the Nikkor 12-24mm f4 for half the money..

Tele lenses: The pro-grade (and expensive  choice is the 70-200mm f2.8 VR. Maybe the Nikkor 70-300mm f4.5-5.6 VR will be usefull for you. VR (image stabilizer) should help you taking pictures still handheld at the long ends..

3. I have an approximately 20 years old Minolta lens, it's a MINOLTAAF 70-210mm 1:3.5-4.5. Will this fit to a Nikon or a Canon orneither? Because when it was used back in the old days, it fitted anikon..

... but won't autofocus. It will be very cumbersome to use this lens together with a modern dslr. And the optical capabilities of lenses have been very improved the last 20 years..

Good luckRogRabb..

Comment #2

Ojjo wrote:.

3. I have an approximately 20 years old Minolta lens, it's a MINOLTAAF 70-210mm 1:3.5-4.5. Will this fit to a Nikon or a Canon orneither? Because when it was used back in the old days, it fitted anikon..

That lens (Minolta AF 70-210mm f/3.5-4.5) would work just fine on a Konica Minolta or Sony DSLR model. All Minolta Lenses made since 1985 are Autofocus. Minolta changed to a new Autofocus lens mount in 1985 when they launched the Maxxum (a.k.a., Dynax) 7000..

The Minolta Autofocus (A Mount) lens system is also known as Dynax, Maxxum and Alpha (depending on the part of the world it's being sold in), and they'll all work on a KM or Sony DSLR model..

Even better, when used on a Konica Minolta or Sony DSLR model, it's stabilized (thanks to their in body stabilization systems)..

It's not a bad lens by most accounts. It's a newer lens design compared to the older Minolta 70-210mm f/4 AF Lens (which is a desirable lens). The 70-210mm f/3.5-4.5 was released by Minolta in 1988. So, you're almost right on the age..

From most accounts I've seen, it's also a faster focusing lens compared to the more sought after 70-210mm f/4 (a.k.a., the Beercan), and it's a smaller and lighter lens (while still being brighter than most consumer grade 70-200mm lenses)..

You can find some user reviews of it on KM and Sony DSLR bodies here (and you'll also see a photo of the lens you can enlarge and compare it to yours to make sure your lens is the same)..

Http://www.dyxum.com/lenses/detail.asp?IDLens=49.

It's not going to work on a Canon or Nikon Body..

But, I'd check out the Sony DSLR-A100 and DSLR-A700 if you want to use it..

You can see Phil's review of the DSLR-A100 here:.

Http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/sonydslra100/.

The DSLR-A700 review is not finished yet. But, it should be posted here when it is:.

Http://www.dpreview.com/previews/sonydslra700/.

JimChttp://www.pbase.com/jcockfield..

Comment #3

RogRabb wrote:.

3. I have an approximately 20 years old Minolta lens, it's a MINOLTAAF 70-210mm 1:3.5-4.5. Will this fit to a Nikon or a Canon orneither? Because when it was used back in the old days, it fitted anikon..

... but won't autofocus. It will be very cumbersome to use this lenstogether with a modern dslr. And the optical capabilities of lenseshave been very improved the last 20 years..

Sure it will (that's why it has AF in front of the 70-210mm).   That AF is for Autofocus (and that's the way that lens is marked)..

Minolta introduced the first body integral Autofocus SLR in 1985 (the Maxxum 7000), along with a new Autofocus Lens mount system that is still in use today by the newest Sony DSLR models (since they acquired Konica Minolta's camera manufacturing assets)..

That lens will work just fine on a Konica MInolta or Sony DSLR model, and it would stabilized, thanks to their in body stabilization system. BTW, these DSLR models (Konica Minolta Maxxum 5D, 7D, Sony DSLR-A100, DSLR-A700 are usually considered to be "modern".  .

JimChttp://www.pbase.com/jcockfield..

Comment #4

1. Which of these cameras do you suggest? (Mainly for landscape/general photography). Is the Nikon worth the 200 more?.

- Canon is way better than Nikon on image quality - see:.

Http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/canoneos400d/page22.asp.

Etc..

2. What lens(es) should I buy to the camera? Should I buy kit or body only? What I really want is a wide-angle lens with some zoom capabilities, and maybe a good zoom lens. So i'm thinking for instance a nikkor 18-70mm and a 70-200mm. These should not cost too much. But I just can't decide if I should buy a 12-24mm, and a 70-200mm! there are so many lenses  and is the lens that comes with the body at all worth to even have?.

- If you can afford it, buy body only + 12-24 + 100-400 + cheapest 50mm.

3. I have an approximately 20 years old Minolta lens, it's a MINOLTA AF 70-210mm 1:3.5-4.5. Will this fit to a Nikon or a Canon or neither? Because when it was used back in the old days, it fitted a nikon..

- Even if you'd find an adapter, I don't think it makes sense....

Http://lordofthelens.smugmug.com/..

Comment #5

Oh, sorry for my fault. Somehow I've overseen the AF in the lenses names.Regards, RogRabb..

Comment #6

It's worth trying the nikon with a battery in it. If it felt better to you it's worth pursuing..

I was considering an oly until I held it and then wound up getting a nikon..

Personally, from samples I've seen around the net I'd give the image quality nod to the nikon over the canon...

Comment #7

MICHAEL_61 wrote:.

1. Which of these cameras do you suggest? (Mainly forlandscape/general photography). Is the Nikon worth the 200 more?.

- Canon is way better than Nikon on image quality - see:.

Http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/canoneos400d/page22.asp.

Yes, of course they are....

Alex..

Comment #8

Thanks guys you've been of great help..

I've been trying the d80 and 400d a little more now, I think the d80 clearly fits my hand better, has a better grip and gives a more quality feel in the hand. The menues on the 400D however are a little better in my opinion. But one of the most remarkable differences that annoys me with teh 400D is that it doesn't have the info screen on top of it..

Went to a store and asked about a package:.

Nikon D80 + 18-70mm lensBag2GB SD card1 Polarization filterA used 70-300mm ED lens in good shape..

This would go for 1330 euros.

Might buy this one... really cheap at least where I live.

If anyone has good advice on a zoom lens that doesn't cost more than 500 euros i'm all ears  I think i'll leave the 12-24mm lens for later..

Comment #9

You'll get the 70-300mm with or without VR?Do you know the rule of thumb for handheld exposure together with tele lenses?.

Curious, RogRabb..

Comment #10

RogRabb wrote:.

You'll get the 70-300mm with or without VR?Do you know the rule of thumb for handheld exposure together withtele lenses?.

Yep gettting the non-VR would be a mistake IMHO..

Alex.

Http://alexandjustine.smugmug.com/..

Comment #11

I'm open for any suggestions as what kind of zoom lens I should get..

I'm not going to pay more than 500-600 euros for it..

Main purpose would be for wildlife (going to africa and wanna shoot wildlife on safaris)..

So a good zoom lens for this purpose... as long as it's worth the money and takes good pictures...

Comment #12

Well than, here we go:.

Ojjo wrote:.

I'm open for any suggestions as what kind of zoom lens I should get.I'm not going to pay more than 500-600 euros for it..

If it has to be a new one that's very limiting. And I don't believe, that you will find sth for this amount in the needed focal range..

Main purpose would be for wildlife (going to africa and wanna shootwildlife on safaris)..

That means long reach and lenses ending with -400mm or -500mm..

You will need a monopod because these guns (without imgage stabilzier) are hardly hand holdable below 1/600 sec resp. 1/750 sec.Is it just a trip? What about renting a lens for this time?.

So a good zoom lens for this purpose... as long as it's worth themoney and takes good pictures..

Good glas will be 1.000 and more..

According to your budget I was thinking of the Nikkor 70-300mm VR. With VR you won't need a monopod very often. But you may miss some reach..

Regards, RogRabb..

Comment #13

Might help you in deciding..

Http://forums.dpreview.com/...ums/readflat.asp?forum=1002&thread=25603876.

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Comment #14

Ojjo wrote:.

I'm open for any suggestions as what kind of zoom lens I should get..

I'm not going to pay more than 500-600 euros for it..

Main purpose would be for wildlife (going to africa and wanna shootwildlife on safaris)..

So a good zoom lens for this purpose... as long as it's worth themoney and takes good pictures..

My suggestion. For that type of shooting, I'd got with a Sony DSLR-A100 and get a Sigma 50-500mm to go with it. Spend less on the body with the Sony compared to the Nikon and get a better lens (and get stabilization with the Sony that you don't have with the Nikon)..

Both the Nikon D80 and Sony DSLR-A100 use a Sony 10MP Sensor..

You'd also have stabilization with the Sony thanks to the camera body based stabilization system (and camera shake is magnified as focal lengths get longer)..

Price a stablized 500mm lens on a Nikon body.   You get stabilization with *all* lenses you use on the Sony..

This combo would cost as follows in the U.S., including an 18-70mm lens so that you have something covering the wider end..

Sony DSLR-A100 with Sony 18-70mm AF lens for $699.95:.

Http://www.bhphotovideo.com/..._DSLRA100K_Alpha_DSLR_A100_Digital_Camera.html.

Sigma 50-500mm f/4.0-6.3 EX DG AF Lens for Sony Alpha and Minolta DSLR models for $999 at B&H (and it's the same price for Nikon bodies, only you don't get the stabilization with Nikon..

Http://www.bhphotovideo.com/...USA/Sigma_736205_50_500mm_f_4_0_6_3_EX_DG.html.

Also, as I've already mentioned, your Minolta 70-210mm f/3.5-4.5 AF lens will work just fine on a Sony DSLR like this..

Price a lens that bright for Nikon and see how much you'd pay for it. Most consumer grade zooms in that focal range are much dimmer lenses (most only have a maximum available aperture of f/5.6 on their long end, which is a smaller aperture compared to the lens you already have). You'd get faster shutter speeds in low light with the Minolta lens you have now.  .

You can see some sample photos taken using KM and Sony DSLR models with the lens you already have (Minolta 70-210mm f/3.5-4.5) here:.

Http://www.dyxum.com/dforum/forum_posts.asp?TID=11745.

If you really want to spend more money on a camera like the D80 (that uses a 10MP Sony sensor) versus a Sony DSLR with stablization that can also use your existing lens, I'd still get the same Sigma 50-500mm lens. But, don't expect to get sharp photos without a tripod in less than optimum lighting with the Nikon. Camera shake is magnified as focal lengths get longer and it would not be stabilized on the Nikon body..

JimChttp://www.pbase.com/jcockfield..

Comment #15

Okay, i've pretty much narrowed it down to the following package:.

Nikon D80Sigma AF 10-20mm f/4-5.6 DC EX HSMNikkor AF-S 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G IF-ED VR.

Then i'll probably borrow for some time a 50mm macro lens, and i'll also buy a polarization filter, memory card and bag..

Any comments on that?..

Comment #16

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