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Sports photography: D2X vs D70

Discussion in 'Nikon DX DSLR Forum' started by jfrancis, May 15, 2005.

  1. jfrancis


    May 8, 2005
    Orlando, FL
    I was out shooting a triathlon this morning with my D70 and 70-200VR. I was using the AF-C and Dynamic Focus modes and was disappointed how many OOF shots I got of runners moving towards me. The camera had not locked focus in many of the shots, judging by the absence of a focus point shown by Nikon Capture. Shutter speed was typically around 1/500 or 1/640 sec, with an aperture of f/3.5, and I was shooting in bursts of 3-5 JPEG Fine.

    I have a question for any action photographers who have had an opportunity to shoot with both the D70 and D2X. Is the AF speed and accuracy significantly better with the D2X? For an additional $4K I should hope so, but I'm willing to admit that at least part of the problem is the photographer . . . :) 
  2. As a former D100 (same focusing engine as D70) and D2H (equal to D2x if not more accurate in focusing based on those who have tried both) owner I can say without question the D2 series blows away the D100/D70 in terms of pure focusing speed and accuracy.

    I will also say that I've switched to a Canon 20D which is not up to D2H standards yet I get very good results shooting sports. When I first shot sports I NEEDED the D2H - now that I have some experience I can get just about the same results with a "lesser" camera by virtue of experience and improved skill.

    Hope this helps.
  3. jfrancis


    May 8, 2005
    Orlando, FL
    Thanks Joe. That's good to know. Experience (or lack of it in my case) is definitely important. Some of my shots today were as sharp as I know the combo is capable of. Many others were not. Hopefully the D2X will increase the 'keeper' rate.
  4. I have both cameras, and there is no comparison in this area (AF speed, accuracy). Of course, like you said, there should not be :D , especially for the $4K. Not also the mirror return time (37ms?), which also increases AF accuracy.

    I am eagerly awaiting Thom Hogan's eBook, my understanding is his D2H eBook really explains all the various AF modes and uses, and should help us know when to use which of the myriad options.
  5. I have both cameras. As you might expect for the additional $4k, the D2X blows away the D70. That is one of the many differences between the two camera.

    Enjoy, Bill
  6. tamachan

    tamachan Guest

    Well, with all fairness to the D70, the AF-C mode will allow you to trip the shutter with or without a focus lock. That would probably explain why NC won't give you the focus point.

    I think the general consensus is that for an additional 4k, it better be a difference in focus tracking.
  7. William

    William Guest

    slightly off topic, but- D2H vs D70

    I should be experimenting next week with my anticipated arrival of a D2X. In the meantime, I 'd certainly say that the D2H is a far superior camera to the D70 for covering action.

    I find that the frame rate difference is only the beginning of the large gap in performance between these cameras, even though I share the opinion often expressed about the D70's excellent overall quality for static subjects. The card-write times, ergonomics for vertical shots, balance with larger lenses, and somewhat smaller files sizes for 4MP vs 6 MP are some other major issues favoring the D2H. Combined, these are very impressive differences in actual use-at least for me.

    When starting to use the D2X in this application, I will most likely record in JPEG format to allow the most possible similarity in workflow and file sizes vs the D2H.
  8. jfrancis


    May 8, 2005
    Orlando, FL
    I see Nikon just released a firmware upgrade for the D70 that is supposed (among other things) to improve AF speed.
  9. William

    William Guest

    D70 firmware updated today

    So far, I think that the camera is more responsive re AF. The menus don't seem to be significantly improved from my initial evaluation.
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