Need help choosing back up camera

Joined
Nov 15, 2010
Messages
19
Location
england
Hi everyone, i have the chance to 2nd shoot some weddings and i am looking for a back up camera. As i dont have any/much cash to spend my options are

1. buy a s/h d70 to go with my d300s

2. sell my d300s and buy 2 d90

I know as a 2nd i dont really need a back up but i would feel an idiot if my camera went down while i was shooting with someone and who knows i may start shooting my own weddings.

Many thanks
 
Joined
Apr 25, 2009
Messages
1,304
Location
Kitchener, ON
The question is what else can you do with the camera when you aren't shooting backup at a wedding?

I like my D40 as the backup, since it is a small camera that I can toss in the car and carry everywhere. I've had several nice shots because I had it with me while my main camera was in the bag at home. The list of limitations of that camera is well known so I won't discuss them, other than to say you'll lose flash commander mode if that is important to you at a wedding.

The D70 would be bigger, but that might not be an issue for you. Either of those would be equally limited by low light and would result in approximately equal images in any given condition. Great photos if they are within capability, but you run out of quality quickly as the light gets worse.
 
Joined
Jan 25, 2009
Messages
1,496
After using a D300s, I don't think you would be satisfied with a D90 or D70. Since you're considering doing more weddings, I suggest finding a used D300.
 
Joined
Mar 4, 2005
Messages
15,552
Location
Los Angeles, USA
Keep your D300S. I'd consider a D200. A bit more expensive than the D70, but cheaper than a D90. Plus it will have similar handling to your D300.
 
Joined
Mar 18, 2008
Messages
5,114
Location
Miami, Florida, USA.
I would say, use an identical camera for back up. The D70 is a great camera but it is a camera with first generation colors, different colors than those of your D300. Nikon software can change the colors but that implies more work during editing of the files.
Noise is a big concern in wedding photography. Neither the D300 nor the D70 perform at their best in low light and flash is a necessity. By the way, flash sync is superior with the D70 at 1/500sec. if you are in need of such a high sync speed.
Having identical cameras will make your job easier.

William Rodriguez
Miami, Florida.
 
Joined
Feb 28, 2006
Messages
4,216
Location
Belgium - Antwerp
Can you borrow a backup from a friend, or rent one for the day. Unless you plan on doing this more often, I would be conservative in my approach to this.

I would certainly not sell the 300s, that seems a bit backwards to me.

Good luck and have fun!
 
Joined
Dec 29, 2008
Messages
741
Location
Southern ON.CA
You are obviously getting paid for the weddings, spend some $ on a used D90 or D300 & don't look back. They will pay for themselves in convienience alone.
 
Joined
Aug 22, 2009
Messages
314
Location
Southern California
I upgraded to a D300s from my D60 and kept the D60 as my backup, but since having my D300s I dont touch the D60 so I would say like others have get something comparable like the D200 or D300.
 
Joined
Aug 28, 2008
Messages
682
Location
Colorado, USA
I guess it depends on how you treat your "backup".
If it's a spare body to keep in your bag in case your principal body goes fubar, then get a D40 or whatever.
But if it's a second body that you'll actually be shooting at the wedding, i.e. your D300s w/17-55 and your second body ready-at-hand w/ the 85 or the 70-200, then get something similar or identical to the D300s; another D300s if you can spring for it, or else a D300 or maybe a Fuji S5.
 
Joined
Sep 30, 2006
Messages
1,119
Location
St. Joseph, MO
I'll throw in my two cents:

I shoot with a D700 and right now am shooting mostly youth rodeo. I wanted a D7000 for several reasons, one being a backup camera. I purchased a new D7000 Friday and played with it Friday evening and Saturday morning.

Took it with me to the rodeo (double header with 12 hours of photographing) and every time I went from the D700 to the D7000, I was expecting buttons and functions to be where they are on the D700. I lost a few shots while my brain was processing where the similar functions were.

At a wedding (and I have shot them for years) I would make sure my backup camera was identical to my main one. There are too many moments that can not be re-created during a wedding and I would hate to miss those moments while grabbing a different style body and using it.
 
Joined
Sep 15, 2008
Messages
1,416
Location
Sacramento
... I was expecting buttons and functions to be where they are on the D700. I lost a few shots while my brain was processing where the similar functions were.

At a wedding (and I have shot them for years) I would make sure my backup camera was identical to my main one. There are too many moments that can not be re-created during a wedding and I would hate to miss those moments while grabbing a different style body and using it.
+1

With 2 bodies the same, you can put a different lens on each body and easily swap as needed during the wedding. You can make exposure adjustments to both as you go, so the backup body and other lens are always immediately available for use. This doesn't work so well when the bodies are different. Especially as different as a D300s and D70. When the backup is for emergency use only, you can miss shooting opportunities while lens changing on the primary body. Lost time, lost opportunities.

Even though you are the 2nd photog at a wedding it still isn't ok if you miss a shot. If what you are shooting isn't important, why do they have you there? Prepare and shoot what you are assigned as if you are the primary. Your professional reputation depends on it.
 

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