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Upgrading from D70

Discussion in 'Nikon DX DSLR Forum' started by ultimind, May 23, 2007.

  1. ultimind


    May 13, 2007
    Cleveland, OH
    I currently have D70 but I'm looking to upgrade. I know all of the general advantages to upgrading to say, a D200 like being able to meter with my manual lenses and such... but I'm looking for a realistic picture-taking advantge. Would a D200 or D80 be able to produce better looking images?

    Honestly 10megapixel is of no concern because I rarely print above 8x10, with the majority of my images being for computer use..in which case anything that can fill my 1920x1200 monitor is perfectly fine.
  2. I the D200 advantages have a lot to do with what you like to shoot. I have a D70, D2H, and D200. I can’t bring myself to sell the D70 as some of my favorite pictures were made with it. I was however, really frustrated with two thing that made me want to upgrade: lack of controls on the camera and RAW buffer. I really didn’t like going into the menu to change metering mode, etc…and once I started shooting RAW the buffer on the D70 became a real weak point for me. So if you are into sports or wildlife I think these things plus the better AF and increased frame rate would be helpful.

    As for the D80 vs D200, I think it would come down to controls on the camera and RAW buffer. If you don’t plan to shoot RAW and continious then that isn’t an issue.

    Good luck with your decision…and if you are looking for a reason to upgrade, I’m sure you can find it in this forum:biggrin:
  3. adaml


    Feb 21, 2006
    You already have what's really important for making great images, and that's a fine selection of lenses.

    I have both the D200 and the D80, and I love both cameras. But they do serve different purposes. If you need a rugged camera with fast RAW fps, then consider the D200. If you need a lighter weight camera with excellent low-light performance, consider the D80. Given the fact that the D80 has the same size sensor as the D200, it is probably the better overall value.

    You will enjoy either camera.
  4. Gale


    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
  5. ultimind


    May 13, 2007
    Cleveland, OH
    I haven't shot a single JPEG frame since January and proud of it! :)  I just rolled over 20,000 images on my D70 since I bought it in late 2004, and I probably shot the first 15,000 or so in JPEG.

    RAW buffer would be nice to have occasionally when shooting sports. I've only hit the 4-image limit on the D70 once or twice since I switched to RAW.

    How is ISO800 and 1600 performance on newer bodies compared to the D70? I'm lens-poor right now and can't afford big F2.8 glass, so I tend to shoot alot of ISO640 and ISO800 w/ slower lenses for nature stuff. I really hate to do it, but it's the only way to get the image.

    I've found some solutions with pushing the images in Lightroom, so sometimes I can get away with shooting ISO320 or 400 and doing a 2-stop push, then applying Noise Ninja, although I would prefer to just shoot it clean to begin with.
  6. jaymc

    jaymc Guest

    I agree with Gale ... go with the D200. Pick one up and you will see why.

    - Jay
  7. I think you will be happier with the D200, although you may be more succeptable to tendonitis
  8. With a D200 you have the opportunity to use MF lenses. There are a number of "gems" out there all a very reasonable price. MY AI and AIS work superbly with my D200. I can easily put 2 lenses in my windbreaker's pockets with a 3rd mounted on the camera and be in a position to photograph almost any subject.
  9. Once you pick up a D200, you'll never put it down...least that's what happened to me
  10. D200.

  11. D200, I've played pretty extensively with a D80 and it didn't make me want to replace my D70s as much as the D200 did. It doesn't really make me want to replace my D70s at all. But D200 does.
  12. ultimind


    May 13, 2007
    Cleveland, OH
    As much as I love my MF lenses...they just don't fit the bill when it comes to nature photography for me. Maybe it was because I grew up around AF lenses but I just can't seem to consistantly get razor sharp results from MF lenses. I think part of the problem is the crap focus screen in the D70. Split prism makes it infinitely easier to focus.

    Can the D200 accept a split prism screen? Seems like D200 (with its MF lens capability) plus a split prism finder would make for usable MF lenses.
  13. InitialD


    Mar 12, 2007
    The D80 shoots cleaner than the D200. But having said that, you'll want the D200 if you want them to meter with your old lenses. However, if you've already been used to doing manual lenses on your D70, the D80 should be no problem.

    I would go with the D80 route and save some money for some good lenses since you don't need a tougher and heavier magnesium body that can spew out 5fps.
  14. ultimind


    May 13, 2007
    Cleveland, OH
    D80 has no ability to meter with manual lenses. So besides a megapixel and lowlight upgrade it doesn't seem like much of an upgrade. Am I missing something?

    I long for MF lens metering, good ISO800 performance, split prism finder, and $499 pricetag :-D
  15. InitialD


    Mar 12, 2007
    Sorry. The only bodies that meters manual AiS lenses are the D200 and the pro D2 series bodies. All not cheap.

    I think a better way to improve your photography is to get a decent body like the D80 and invest in good glasses like the 300mm f/4 or the 80-200mm f/2.8 for wildlife stuff. That way, you sidestep manual lenses and go straight with AF lenses.
  16. The D200 can use a Katz-Eye focusing screen, which is split-prism and which works wonderfully for shooting macros and anything in Manual Focus.

    Going from the D70 to the D200 would be a much more significant upgrade and I think you would be happier in the long run because of the additional features and functions available on the D200 as opposed to the D70 or D80.
  17. ultimind


    May 13, 2007
    Cleveland, OH
    With the D200 over a year old already, I'd be nervous spending $1400 and then have Nikon release another significant upgrade in their D-SLR line.

    Another option I was toying with was picking up a D50 body on eBay. I've been seeing these things go for next to nothing and that would give me an extra body to keep a wide lens on while keeping a telephoto zoom (hopefully a 80-200 F2.8 soon!) on the D70.
  18. Cope


    Apr 5, 2007
    Houston, Texas
    I have to ask...

    Then why did you post the original question?
  19. Jeff Lee

    Jeff Lee

    May 16, 2006
    It shouldn't make you nervous. The D200 and good CS skills should provide viable images as long as the shutter functions and/or they are fixing them.

    At about 35K on my D70 (I figure about half way through, should take a few more years since I have the D200 now), I am still learning the instrument and how to get the best out of it.

    Remember no one is guaranteed tomorrow, I know that for a fact as 4 years ago the women I thought I'd spend the rest of my life with died very suddenly. Be prudent but live well.
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