D70 vs N80

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  • 05-09-2005, 11:02 AM
    AgmLauncher
    D70 vs N80
    Hey everyone. I currently own a Nikon N80 SLR camera which I have been enormously happy with. However I rarely get to use it due to the cost of the transparency film I use (both purchase and developing). I can go through a roll of it in virtually no time. I think it's time to make the transition to "guilt-free" photography.

    My question now is about the features of the camera. I have grown accustomed to the ammenities of the N80. Does the D70 have similar features to the N80? I know it has Depth of Field preview which is most important. Can the remote be configured to behave like a cable release? Holding the shutter open for say, 30 seconds or so?

    Im just wondering if anyone has "upgraded" to the D70 from the N80 and if they actually felt it was an upgrade, or whether the D70 is lacking some of the features of the N80.

    Thanks everyone!

    BTW:
    Does anyone know what the most significant advantages of the D70s are over the original D70?
  • 05-09-2005, 02:30 PM
    OldSchool
    Re: D70 vs N80
    Hi Agm,

    Yes. The D70 has DOF preview. Yes. The IR remote can be used as a cable release. IMHO, there is not much advantage of the D70s over the D70. You do get a larger LCD with the D70s. But, there will be a firmware upgrade for the D70 that incorporates all the new features of the D70s.

    I do not have a N80. My friend does, and I've played with it. It's a nice camera. But, I'd rather shoot with a D70 for many reasons.

    BR,
    Tim

    p.s. http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/nikond70/
  • 05-09-2005, 09:49 PM
    Franglais
    Re: D70 vs N80
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AgmLauncher
    Hey everyone. I currently own a Nikon N80 SLR camera which I have been enormously happy with. However I rarely get to use it due to the cost of the transparency film I use (both purchase and developing). I can go through a roll of it in virtually no time. I think it's time to make the transition to "guilt-free" photography.

    My question now is about the features of the camera. I have grown accustomed to the ammenities of the N80. Does the D70 have similar features to the N80? I know it has Depth of Field preview which is most important. Can the remote be configured to behave like a cable release? Holding the shutter open for say, 30 seconds or so?

    Im just wondering if anyone has "upgraded" to the D70 from the N80 and if they actually felt it was an upgrade, or whether the D70 is lacking some of the features of the N80.

    Thanks everyone!

    BTW:
    Does anyone know what the most significant advantages of the D70s are over the original D70?

    I have the N80 and the D70. They very similar but a few differences come to mind:

    - there are many more customisable features on the D70
    - the viewfinder on the D70 seems smaller
    - the D70 is much heavier and seems more solid

    The D70s has a real cable release, unlike the D70 (I'm still waiting for my D70 IR control to arrive).

    Charles
  • 05-10-2005, 06:12 AM
    tijean
    Re: D70 vs N80
    Besides the larger LCD screen of the D70s, it is my understanding that a D70 with free firmware upgrade is identical to the D70s. The list price of the D70s is less, but I am sure that a good deal can be found on the D70 now that the D70s is out. Between the two, I would base it on which you can find a better deal on.
  • 05-10-2005, 02:59 PM
    AgmLauncher
    Re: D70 vs N80
    Thanks for the info guys. I just read an outstanding and comprehensive review of the D70 here http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/nikond70/

    I think that's pretty much sold me on going digital and the D70 looks like a great choice. I was wondering if should bother saving up for the D100, but the D70 is more than enough camera for me and near as I can tell, it's got all the same functionality of the N80. I do like the notion of an actual cable release slot on the D70s as well as a larger screen, but as you said, the price is what will make the final decision :P

    However I do have one nagging question. Can I assume the view finder in the D70 has all the same information readout that the viewfinder of the N80 does? (exposure value, aperature setting, focus indicator, metering indicator etc)?

    Thanks again :D
  • 05-11-2005, 11:40 AM
    OldSchool
    Re: D70 vs N80
    Hey Agm,

    The viewfinder info is very comprehensive. Check out this section of a different review:

    http://www.imaging-resource.com/PRODS/D70/D70A5.HTM

    My only complaint about the viewfinder (well I have two) is that it is on the small side. I wear glasses. The other issue I have is that the rubber eye piece doesn't stay on.

    BR,
    Tim
  • 05-11-2005, 12:06 PM
    AgmLauncher
    Re: D70 vs N80
    Well, I bought the bullet and picked up the camera today. What an amazing camera it is. For all those that have been saying Nikon should include mirror lockup, Nikon included an electronic mirror lockup in the D70. There is also an auto-rotate feature in the camera. When you rotate the camera for a vertical shot, it rotates the image when you play it back on the screen. The picture quality is simply amazing, the good old matrix metering is dead on accurate.

    It also has the latest firmware version installed (the one the D70s ships with) as it gave me a histogram readout of the image (I dont even know how to read a histogram or what it means, can anyone link to a dummy's guide to histograms? :P).

    Alas the only problem is there seems to be something loose inside. It sounds like a small ball bearing or screw or plastic piece that moves around when you shift the camera. It doesnt seem to have any impact on the mechanics of it, but Im worried that it might cause a problem in the future. :(

    Here is the very first shot I took. To give you an idea of the lighting conditions, it's like one of those hazy/light overcast days where the sky is just bright white and there are no real shadows. Everything is sort of muted and there's just no texture to the lighting at all. The matrix metering and auto white balancing handled this lighting absolutely brilliantly.

    http://home.comcast.net/~dvldog4c/1st_image.jpg

    Basically that image looks NOTHING like the conditions it was shot under. The colors were washed out, everything was too bright, but without doing anything besides controlling the DOF, I got this image. What a great camera!!!
  • 05-11-2005, 09:24 PM
    christopher_platt
    Re: D70 vs N80
    I'm glad to hear you're happy with your D70. I like mine, but like all cameras, it has its quirks. 2 things: If there's something rattling around inside, exchange it. Better safe than sorry.

    Histograms: Some argue that this is hands down the biggest single contribution that digital makes to photography. The histogram basically shows you how the lightness of your image is distributed. The extreme left of the histogram represents zero, or pixels that will print to complete black. The extreme right end represents pixels that will be totally blown out, or a lightness value of 255, which is as bright as they get. How high the graph is stacked in different places represents the quantity of pixels with that brightness value. For example: If everything is stacked up in the center of the histogram with very little on either end, you will have a flat, low contrast image. If everything is stacked up on the right, it means that either 1)your image is overexposed or 2) you shot a scene correctly that has a light of "brights" in it (a snow scene, etc). The low contrast thing is very easily fixed in photoshop or other image editing programs, but pixels that are blown out to complete white represent something that can't be recovered. SO KEEP AN EYE ON THAT HISTOGRAM! It's a lot like shooting transparency film (expose for the highlights), so you should be used to it. But it's nice to be able to check and know for sure. Search the "digital imaging" forum for "histogram" and you should find a lot of helpful stuff about reading them. It's intimidating at first, but it quickly becomes second nature.

    In my opinion, if you have a high end digital camera, photoshop is money well spent.
    That pic you have is great, but just wait till you play with the levels and contrast in photoshop. Then it'll really WOW you.

    I bought my D70 because of film costs too, and I'm very happy I did.
    Oh, one other thing: That electronic mirror lockup function is not for shooting vibration free tripod shots like on a film camera. It holds up the mirror and shuts off the CCD so you can clean it. Alas, no real mirror lockup function on the D70.

    Chip
  • 05-13-2005, 10:24 AM
    tijean
    Re: D70 vs N80
    Congrats!

    Here is a really good explaination of histograms as they relate to digital photography: http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tu...stograms.shtml

    As for mirror lock up, when I first started playing with my friend's D70, I though the same thing ("Hey cool! It's got MLU!), but no, that's just a function to allow you access to the sensor for cleaning. The good news is that if you ever got deeply interested into the types of photography that this would be necessary in, you would probably have already bought one of Nikon's vibration reduction lenses, which pretty much eliminate the appearance of mirror shake.

    As for the rattling, don't worry, it is completely normal. What you are hearing is the orientation sensor. Stop shaking it and it will go away. :)

    As software's been mentioned, I should give my two cents. Being new to digital photography, I think Adobe Elements 3 would be a much better way to go. It has all the features that you are going to need for quite a while. It is also a fraction of the price of Photoshop CS2.
  • 05-14-2005, 08:07 PM
    AgmLauncher
    Re: D70 vs N80
    Yes, that's exactly what I thought it was too. Thankfully it's nothing major.

    Thanks for the link btw :D

    Oh, I already have a full copy of PS7, which I bought through my school's student program. I've been using it to do web graphics and stuff, but ill be using it more extensively now for digital photography. Lots of learning to do it looks like :p
  • 05-15-2005, 06:01 PM
    lidarman
    Given I have a darkroom in the basement...
    I still don't know why people shoot film?!

    Just get one already!

    (PS, maybe I out to tout film so I can sell my enlarger and stuff)
  • 05-16-2005, 10:40 AM
    tijean
    Re: Given I have a darkroom in the basement...
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by lidarman
    I still don't know why people shoot film?!

    Just get one already!

    (PS, maybe I out to tout film so I can sell my enlarger and stuff)

    Not to get into the film vs. digital thing, but there are a LOT of reasons people still stoot film (including myself). Show me an affordable (~$1000) digital camera that can give me the quality and dynamic range of medium and large forum film and I'll dump my chemicals right now. I'll also need a pocket camera that can shoot 3200 with film-like grain to replace the $1 cameras I use for improptu street work. I won't go into the less tangible reasons. I should note that there are a dozen things that digital has over film (and I regularly use a DSLR for the applications it suits best), but that wasn't the question.

    Then there's the artithmatic of a light user ($400 + $250 in film < D70)
  • 05-19-2005, 01:01 AM
    The Ever Optimist
    Re: D70 vs N80
    Hey
    I'm one of the N80 to D70 upgraders : ) and i must say i'm VERY happy about this move!
    The learning curve is really steep but now my results from the D70 are so good that im selling off my N80
    Featurewise, it more than matches the N80 and theres nothing that i really miss: my favourtie were the grid lines and they are here also....more imprtantly the abiltiy to change ISO on the fly is the most fantastic part about the D70...and even at 1600, noise levels are very reasonable
    Surprisingly, its far more 'substancial' to hold than the N80, feels very solid and comfortable

    More than anything else, like most people, the convenience of digital as a medium has been the main reason for this upgrade and the D70 is one of the best choices out there...

    Hope this helps!
    Kunal
  • 05-19-2005, 01:39 AM
    mdmc
    Re: D70 vs N80
    Alas the only problem is there seems to be something loose inside. It sounds like a small ball bearing or screw or plastic piece that moves around when you shift the camera. It doesnt seem to have any impact on the mechanics of it, but Im worried that it might cause a problem in the future. :(

    The rattle probably is the orientation sensor. it should not rattle. Mine does not rattle & I bought used.
    I would not accept a camera with a rattle. You paid for a perfect camera, and you should get one. Don't let anyone tell you that is normal. Its not.
    My 2 cents,
    Mark.