# Nikon Digital SLR guidance

Discussion in 'Digital Cameras' started by Neil Jones, Jul 26, 2011.

1. ### Neil JonesGuest

Hi,

I am a very very amateurish photographer. Before the digital cameras, I
invested in some Nikon Lenses for the Nikon AF 6006 camera. In the
digital camera arena, the most advanced version of the camera that I
have dealt with are the telezoom cameras (Lumix FZ28/FZ100 type).
However, sometimes I do want to own a DSLR but do not want to break the
bank either. The best Nikor lens I have is the AF ED 80-200 F/2.8 and
the other lenses are about average. It is sad to see the lenses
accumulating dust. Which DSLR would give some life to these lenses
and some fun for me (again without breaking the bank)?

Neil Jones, Jul 26, 2011

2. ### Joe MakowiecGuest

These lens compatibility charts should tell you whether your lenses
will work on which dSLRs:

http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/compatibility-lens.htm

http://www.nikonians.org/nikon/slr-lens.html

The AF ED certainly will. If you don't want to break the bank, you
probably want to eliminate the full-frame (FX) sensor cameras - D3S,
D3X, D700 - from consideration. Of the rest, body-only prices range
from US$500 to US$1,700. Nikon's dSLR page allows you to compare them:

http://www.nikonusa.com/Nikon-Products/Digital-SLR-Cameras/index.page

I just bought a D7000, although it replaced an earlier Nikon digital,

Joe Makowiec, Jul 26, 2011

3. ### David Dyer-BennetGuest

The short rule is, any Nikon lens that will mount on the
6006 will mount and work usefully (but not necessarilly
with all the frills) on any Nikon DSLR body. However,
there are some bodies that will not AF with older AF lenses
(the D40 and friends AF with AF-S lenses only), and some
bodies that will not meter with non-chipped lenses (which
is not that big a deal in most cases, I used one for a few
years myself).

Depending on what kind of photography you do, and personal
preference, the lack of AF is somewhere between fatal and
irrelevant . Up to you!

That 80-200/2.8 is a first-rate lens according to all
reports. Optically equal to my much-more-expensive
70-200/2.8 AF-S VR, though it will focus slower, and
doesn't have VR (I'm not much impressed with VR in the
70-200 anyway).

I found the 80-200 length VERY useful on an APS-C (DX in
Nikon terms) body (Fuji S2, and then Nikon D200). (You
understand that the field of view depends on the sensor
size, right? So 200mm on a DX body gives the same field of
view as 300mm on an FX body?) You'll probably find
yourself having to replace your widest lens to be happy,
and maybe your walkaround lens as well.

From what you say about price, I'm assuming the FX bodies,
D700 and D3s and D3x, are out of the question. It does
sound like a D90, maybe used or refurb, might be a good fit
for you.

Good luck!

David Dyer-Bennet, Jul 26, 2011
4. ### Neil JonesGuest

Thank you! The advice is very practical for me.

I think a used D90 would be good camera to own for the moment.

Thank you once again.

Neil Jones, Jul 28, 2011
5. ### Moro Grubb of Little DelvingGuest

If your budget is really tight, you could probably pick up a used D50,
D70 or D80 for a song these days...

/M

Moro Grubb of Little Delving, Jul 28, 2011
6. ### BruceGuest

I agree with all of the above. Plus, if the 80-200mm f/2.8 is the
last AF-S version, it focuses just as fast as the later 70-200mm.

Nikon Europe apparently has hundreds of these 80-200mm f/2.8 AF-S
lenses in stock but for some reason won't release them to dealers. We
have a list price, we know they have them, but we cannot order them.
No-one knows (or will tell us) why not. Very disappointing, because
they are excellent lenses, and particularly good value for money.

The two touch 'screwdriver drive' version is also optically excellent
and is very fast to focus on late 35mm SLRs and pro/prosumer DSLRs
despite not having the Silent Wave motor. Its only real weakness is
its rather unsharp performance at the 200mm focal length when focused
at or near its minimum focusing distance, but experienced users know
they can correct that by using a +1 close-up lens.

Bruce, Jul 28, 2011
7. ### meGuest

I've just seen your post looking like your coming to the D90. It might
help if you talk about the type of photography you do. For instance I
make great use of the autoiso modes in my D200/D300 and this is just
one area the next level down in cameras is hampered. Specifically I
set a min shutter speed to fix on and shoot aperture-priority mode and
let the iso float to accommodate up to a user set limit.

me, Jul 28, 2011
8. ### PeterNGuest

With my singing ability I could get more than one if I refrain from
singing.

PeterN, Jul 28, 2011
9. ### PeterNGuest

I don't rely on "all reports" in commenting on a lens. I try it for
myself. I use my 70-200 almost as a general purpose lens. My daughter
had the 80-200. She found the focus too slow and traded it towards the
70-200.

Whether you need VR is a matter of what you photograph. With my D300 I
use high ISO or on a tripod. In either case I turn off VR. Turning off
VR gives a faster release time.

<snip>

Use of a close up optic degrades the quality of the fine Nikon optics.
If I want closer focus I use extension tubes.

YMMV

PeterN, Jul 28, 2011
10. ### GuestGuest

which 80-200? there were several versions, ranging from slow focus to
very fast (just as fast as the 70-200). it also can depend on the
camera.
nope. there is no additional delay once vr is engaged. also, vr helps
stabilize tripods, especially if it's windy.
only if it's a poor quality closeup lens.
that also degrades things, since the lens was probably not designed for
an extension (some lenses might be though).

Guest, Jul 28, 2011
11. ### PeterNGuest

Not sure which one. She only had it for about a week and it may well
have been one of the slow focus ones.
I tend to follow the manufacturers recommendations. You are free to do
otherwise. My avian photographer friends do not use VR unless necessary
as they feel it takes additional time to stabilize.
then recommend on that does not degrade resolution.
It should have little noticeable effect on the resolution. If I am
wrong, I would like proof.

PeterN, Jul 28, 2011
12. ### GuestGuest

nikon recommends using vr on a tripod for many of their vr lenses,
including the 70-200 you use:

the 'additional time to stabilize' happens when you're composing and
focusing. it's a non-issue.

Guest, Jul 28, 2011
13. ### PeterNGuest

The source you cite says that you use VR "when the pan tilt head is
loose...."

With the following lenses/cameras VR should be "Off" when the camera is
mounted on a tripod and the pan/tilt head is locked down and using a
cable release:
•105mm f/2.8G ED-IF AF-S VR Micro Nikkor
•18-200mm f3.5-5.6 ED-IF AF-S VR DX Zoom-Nikkor
•24-120mm f3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF-S VR Zoom-Nikkor
•70-200mm f2.8G ED-IF AF-S VR Zoom-Nikkor
•80-400mm f4.5-5.6D ED VR AF Zoom-Nikkor

Very true with birds in flight. <\end sarcastic tag>

Please don't insult my intelligence by misquoting sources.

PeterN, Jul 28, 2011
14. ### tony cooperGuest

The bird photographers in my camera club also include an admonition in
their presentations to turn off the VR on shots as you describe.

tony cooper, Jul 28, 2011
15. ### MeGuest

There are issues with premature AF-s motor failure on these lenses, an
expensive exercise to fix under warranty. Perhaps it was better
economics to not sell them, and sell the more reliable 70-200.
Easiest (IMO) just to zoom back to <150mm, and take a step closer.
This lens has been round in various forms with same optical formula for
a long time. Not surprisingly, the close distance/long focal length
backfocus issue never seemed to be an issue before dslrs made it too
easy for people to test everything to death.
There is another weakness with the later 2-ring version of the lens.
The AF/MF switch ring on the barrel is badly engineered, and eventually
cracks and fails. The replacement part is inexpensive, but the lens has
to be disassembled to replace it.

Me, Jul 28, 2011
16. ### SavageduckGuest

The newer AF-S 80-200mm f/2.8 has not been offered by vendors for
years, only the older AF 80-200mm f/2.8D is currently available. This
is still very good glass, and at \$1,120 compared to the 70-200 f/2.8
VRII, is a good value.
Nikon has done what it can to push buyers for that range of pro glass
towards the 70-200mm.

Savageduck, Jul 28, 2011
17. ### SavageduckGuest

In the USA, Nikon withdrew all the AF-S 80-200mm f/2.8D ED lenses for
that reason. This left the older bullet proof, reliable AF 80-200mm
f/2.8D, which is still available and has actually out lived its
successor.

Savageduck, Jul 28, 2011
18. ### Neil HarringtonGuest

In chronological order of their appearance (and more or less ascending order
of desirability and probable price), the D70, D70s, D50 (a later but lower
priced version of the D70s), D80 and D90. Any of those should work fine with
any Nikon AF lenses, and there are must be loads of those models on eBay.
The D90 is definitely the best, most advanced and feature-rich of those, and
is almost certain to be the most expensive, all else being equal. My guess
is you'd be able to find a D80 at a much more attractive price, and that is
still a very nice and capable DSLR.

Avoid the small-body Nikons in the D40 family (D40X, D60, D3000, D5000 etc.)
because they do not have the in-body AF motor you need for autofocusing
older AF (non AF-S) lenses you probably own.

Neil Harrington, Jul 28, 2011
19. ### GuestGuest

d50 and d70s came out at the same time. they were similar but the d50
was not just a subset of the d70s. it did a few things the d70s didn't,
although it's been too long to remember what those were.
the d90 is still available, new.
true if you want to keep older lenses, but in some cases, it may be
worth selling the older lenses and buying a less expensive camera with

Guest, Jul 29, 2011
20. ### BruceGuest

Interesting, guys, thanks for that!

Bruce, Jul 29, 2011