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  1. #1
    Junior Member poisomike87's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010

    Yet another camera purchasing question :)

    Hello my name is Michael, I have a couple of questions that I would like your opinions on.

    I currently have a Nikon D40 camera that I purchased when they first came out. I have been shooting with the kit lens since I have purchased the thing.

    I want to take the next step and move up to a more advanced setup. I am a pretty broke college student so money is scarce. Have a set budget of 800 dollars that I want to use to upgrade my setup which I plan on doing around October.

    My ultimate desire is to have some decent glass and a nice camera body.
    I have not really bought into any camera brand so I am open to purchasing Nikon, Canon, Etc..

    If I stay With Nikon I am going to need to replace my 18-55mm kit lens because there is a scratch on the rear element that interferes with photos taken in bright light.

    I have been looking at purchasing a refurbished D80 that adorama has for sale at 599.99 and a pick up a used Nikon 35mm f/1.8G AF-S.

    If I just upgrade glass I will probably purchase some of the AF-S lenses that Nikon has currently (55-200mm AF-S VR, 35mm f/1.8G AF-S, and a new 18-55mm kit lens)

    I have been watching Ebay for Nikon DSLR’s and have spotted some good deals, hopefully when October rolls around there may be good listings as well.

    What do you guys think? I know that a good rule of thumb is upgrade the glass before the body but the D40 is getting pretty limited for me as of late.

    Like I said I am not married on a camera brand. However I used Nikon as an example because that is what I am familiar with.


    I take all sorts of photos from landscapes to portraits. I also like to try neat stuff with exposures. my favorite thing to photograph is lightning. every time it storms im on the front porch trying to stay dry snapping away.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Yet another camera purchasing question :)-big-bolt.jpg  
    In todays news:

    Optimist drowns in half full bathtub

  2. #2
    project forum co-moderator Frog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    wa state

    Re: Yet another camera purchasing question :)

    Just read your introduction in the Welcome thread so I,too, welcome you.

    I have the D80 and am quite pleased with it. D90 does a far better job handling noise at high iso but then it will cost you a lot more.
    I was going to say stay with Nikon because you already have a lens but if that lens is shot, then I guess it could go either way. I'm prone to Nikon but I'm a prejudiced owner.

    Either way, you are marrying into a system. Sure they make adapters so you can mount a Nikon lens on a Canon and vice-versa but you lose a lot that way.
    So check out the systems and don't forget Olympus, Pentax, Sony.
    They make good cameras too and are more affordable.

    I do want you to read the camera dealer feedback forum. Good deals are a dime a dozen, good dealers aren't.
    When you shop ebay, make sure the dealer for whichever brand you end up with is an
    AUTHORIZED dealer. If they aren't, then they are selling grey market cameras that were meant to be sold in other countries. Nikon and I guess Canon will not honor their warranties if they are gray market. The dealer will offer a warranty but it won't be from the manufacturer and I've heard many horror stories of the so called warranty companies.

    Good luck and stick around. Many here with more knowledge than I, so ask all the questions you need.
    Keep Shooting!


    Please refrain from editing my photos without asking.

  3. #3
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Salt Lake City, Utah, United States

    Re: Yet another camera purchasing question :)

    I really like that photo! I think including more of the houses so they aren't chopped off would have been nice. But overall it's a good photo and your exposure is right on.

    So why do you think you need to replace your D40? Is there something it's not doing for you? The advice most of us give when someone wants to upgrade their camera is to invest your money in a new lens instead. While a new camera will give you some new features and might improve image quality, a new lens usually offers a lot more. And if all you have right now is a scratched kit lens, then I really think a better lens is where you should put your money. I think you'll be surprised at what a new lens can do for you. My recommendation would be to look for a used 18-200 VR lens and I also like the idea of the 35mm DX lens. I reviewed that lens when it came out and I really liked it.

    Your reviews are the foundation of this site - Write A Review!

  4. #4
    Senior Member armando_m's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Guadalajara Mexico

    Re: Yet another camera purchasing question :)

    Have you looked at adorama ?

    There is a used nikon D90 in Adorama for $750 (demo) body only

    you can get a nikon 50mm f1.8 Af (which will work with the D90) adorama has a couple of them listed at about $115

    The D40 is great but does have it's limitations, I had one, my main gripes were the small viewfinder, 3 focus points, and limited high ISO

    The 18-200 vr lens is awesome and works like a charm on the d40, vr does help a lot. Same for the 35mm f1.8 afs, the bigger aperture does open a whole new set of opportunities to shoot, using low iso

    Let us know what you decide

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Mustang, Oklahoma USA

    Re: Yet another camera purchasing question :)

    I would look at some of the other offerings from Tamron and Sigma also. I have the Tamron 28-75 2.8 with the built in focus motor and it is a superb lens for under $450 dollars. I just got the Tamron 17-50 2.8 with vibration compensation and built in focus motor for $625 not including tax from my local dealer and then it comes with a $70 dollar rebate. It too is a great lens.

    Just keep your options open but I agree with the above. Better glass is a much better investment over the long haul. Until I started buying and using faster glass I had no idea what I was missing.
    Nikon D300s with Nikon grip
    Nikon D300 with Zeikos grip
    Nikon D40x
    Nikkor 80-200 2.8
    Nikkor 70-300 VR
    Nikkor 18-55 Kit lens
    Nikkor 50 1.8
    Nikkor 35 1.8
    Tamron 17-50 2.8 VC
    Tamron 28-75 2.8

  6. #6
    Junior Member poisomike87's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010

    Re: Yet another camera purchasing question :)

    hello everyone and thanks for the replies,

    I was talking with another person yesterday about my ideas and they gave me a whole bunch of suggestions.

    I am going to stay with the D40 body. I have put together a shopping list which will fit my body nicely.

    The first thing I am going to upgrade is the kit lens, I have been looking at the:

    Sigma 18mm - 50mm f/2.8 EX DC Macro,
    Sigma 18mm - 200mm f/3.5-6.3 DC OS
    and the Sigma 17 - 70mm f/2.8-4.5 DC

    as a replacement.

    I like the 17-70mm and the 18-50mm, from what I have been reading the speed and price point of those lenses is very good. I am going to start reading more into them but they look like exactly what I want and the pricing is hard to beat.

    for the tele I am considering the Nikon 55-200mm AF-S VR or the Sigma 50-200mm f/4-5.6 DC OS HSM.

    All of these have built in AF motors and should work with my camera nicely.

    when I figure out which ones I want I plan on purchasing a
    Decent flash (the SB-600 looks pretty nice)
    a few spare batteries,
    and a nice camera bag.

    the 2 lenses, flash, battery, filters and bag should bring me to about 700 even

    Then if/when I upgrade to a new body I will have all of that stuff waiting for it


    when I take my lightning shots (every time it rains) my positioning is always weird, in order not to get soaked I have to stand on my front porch packed in the corner with my tripod. lately I have been setting it up level hooking up a usb cord to my camera and using Nikon Camera Control with the camera and laptop so I can sit inside nice and dry and snap away

    It took awhile to get the exposure settings figured out: f/10 in bulb mode @ ISO 200, I will take shots in intervals of 30 seconds, if I get a strike I will hold the shutter open for 4 seconds after the bolt goes away.

    this is what has worked for me since I started doing it

    here is another shot, I have taken (have dozens of them) as well as a photo from about the angle that I shoot at on my porch.

    Thanks again everyone
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Yet another camera purchasing question :)-dsc_0085.jpg   Yet another camera purchasing question :)-dsc_0023.jpg  
    In todays news:

    Optimist drowns in half full bathtub

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