Need Advice

Discussion in 'Photography' started by capescuba, Apr 25, 2007.

  1. capescuba

    capescuba Supporting Member

    So may pay review was very favourable ;D so I am on the hunt for my new toy.

    I am definately getting the Nikon D40X but not 100% sure which lens combination to get - I am a complete newbie to DSLR ...

    There are two possibilities I have seen, both running ~ $1,000.

    • [li]18-135mm f/3.5-5.6G[/li]
      [li]18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G + 55-200mm f/4.5-5.6G[/li]

    I am leaning toward the first option, simply so I am not having to mess with changing lenses etc. but then again I really don't appreciate the differences. And I know that the 55-200 is not with stabilization (the VR?) but I do have somewhat of a budget!

    Thanks for any help / advice.
  2. Ibn

    Ibn Supporting Member

    Between those two, the 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6G.

    1) Lighter than the other two combined
    2) Easier to use, no lens changes
    3) Better optically - 2 ED and 2 aspherical elements (helps w/distortions)
    VS. 18-55mm - 1 ED and 1 aspherical element
    VS. 55-200mm - 1 ED element

    There is also the 3rd option: 18-200mm VR (2 ED and 3 aspherical elements; 50% heavier than the 18-135mm).

    Or go w/my kit if you have a decent budget to work with:

    17-55mm f/2.8 AFS (3 ED and 3 aspherical elements)
    70-200mm f/2.8 AFS VR (5 ED elements)

    Whatever you decide with, just make sure that you go with either a AFS or AFI lens, otherwise you lose autofocus!
  3. kinetic

    kinetic Webmaster

    I like eric's kit, though it's a bit hefty of a budget. I've wanted that combo but alas not enough funds.

    My 18-200mm (which I know Rich has also ordered) optically is great! Enough for me at least, and lens changes only occur when I want to switch to my super wide 12mm / 10.5mm / macro or other specialty lens. Otherwise walking around 18-200 wins!

    I know the 18-200 can be had for ~$800 these days, and would be far better than the 18-135 in my opinion. The 18-135 has a few small issues, including it's plastic vs. metal mount.
  4. capescuba

    capescuba Supporting Member

    I was trying to keep the whole purchase to around $1000, but if I get the 18-200 VR then it's way blown!

    This is as close as I have seen ....
  5. Ibn

    Ibn Supporting Member

    Stay away from those guys. A 1.07 out of a 10 from 42 reviews is REALLY sketchy.

    If your budget is 1k, then the 18-135 as stated above.

    Go with a more reliable/trusted seller instead of those guys though.

    I'd pick up the D40X and 18-135mm from these guys.
  6. Raddogz

    Raddogz Guest

    Dave - did you ever get a chance to order your camera yet?
  7. capescuba

    capescuba Supporting Member

    Not yet ... :( Too much going on at work... and getting Jake to his Swim lessons :)
  8. Raddogz

    Raddogz Guest, work, and then play in that order huh? :D

    Jake has swim lessons already that's pretty cool!
  9. GreshamH

    GreshamH Guest

    Swim lessons all ready? Can he even talk yet?

    AM I missing a few years, isn't he like 2? Dang :) Water boy!
  10. capescuba

    capescuba Supporting Member

    He is 16 months! And yes he can talk, well a few choice words at least ... Fish, Coral, Flower ...

    I used to be a swimmer (I swam from England until I was 20) so any chance I've had, he has been in the water. He's been to Kauai twice, so plenty of time in the pool there, he even likes the sea!

    His fly needs a little work yet though ;-)
  11. GreshamH

    GreshamH Guest

    You swam from England until your were 20? How far did yah get? :D
  12. capescuba

    capescuba Supporting Member

  13. Raddogz

    Raddogz Guest

    Yeah, I was wondering the same :D.

    The little tyke must be pretty big now!
  14. capescuba

    capescuba Supporting Member

    So now I am wavering on my camera choice! ??? When I first started to look at DSLR about a year ago I fell in love with the new Sony A 100. I know it's a v.1, but with the Minolta name it should be reasonably solid.

    Comments for / against this guy? I can get the camera + a 18-200mm lens for $999 at

    Damn I need to make up my mind.

    Hell let's throw the Rebel into the pot for discussion also .....
  15. Raddogz

    Raddogz Guest

    D40x or Rebel are good.

    A guy at work just bought the Sony one and likes it a ton.

    As much as I love Crutchfield they're stuff is expensive. Expensive because they sell it at msrp if not a little higher.

    B&H Photo or BuyDig offer better prices. I know I've spent way too much money at B&H over the years.
  16. zepplock

    zepplock Guest

    Sony lens are more expensive than Nikon/Canon I think.
  17. Ibn

    Ibn Supporting Member

    Minolta frame with a Sony name over it. It's very similar to Pentax with the Samsung name over their cameras.

    Given the choices between the D40X, Sony alpha, and the Rebel 400D, I'd go with the Canon, since you aren't invested in any of the glasses/hardware. Here's a quick comparison between the three on paper.

    Pros/cons of the 3:

    1. CMOS vs. CCD - 400D uses CMOS vs. the CCD of the other two and is better for noise (the Sony CCD and the Nikon are very similar since Sony produces sensors for Nikon)

    2. Image stabilization - Sony is built into the camera vs. on lens stabilization with Canon and Nikon
    a. 2 stops stabilization on the Sony
    b. 3-4 stops on the Canon/Nikon depending on which generation of IS/VR it has

    3. Flash modes - Nikon's system is better than the other two

    4. Exposure compensation - Nikon's is more adjustable

    5. Time lapse photography - Canon is the only one w/this ability, but it needs to be hooked up to a computer/laptop

    6. Flash cards - Canon/Sony both uses CF vs. the Nikon which uses SD (might not matter; I prefer CF)

    7. Size and weight - The alpha is nearly 20% larger and heavier than either the Canon or Nikon

    8. Integrated sensor cleaner - the 400D is the first camera with this ability

    9. Lenses - Canon/Nikon lens choices are far greater and are better optically, as well as less expensive overall.

    With the above in mind, it's really basically down to the Canon or the Nikon. You might save right now by jumping onto the Sony, but where do you go from there? You'll have to pay a price premium for their lenses over the other two. Always invest in lenses over bodies since lenses hold their resale value very well (typically 10% depreciation) vs. camera bodies (can drop below 50%). This goes across the board and even impacts how the D40x compares. Also, what would you have to look forward to looking at the future in case you were to upgrade? Both Canon and Nikon offers pretty clear and defined bodies that you can upgrade to; not so with Sony.

    The D40x will only autofocus with AFS and AFI lenses. This limits the lenses that you can autofocus with, including the 50mm f/1.8D, 50mm f/1.4D, etc. The Canon on the other hand will do fine with both EF and EF-S mount lenses. The D40x will give you more flexibility if you want to do things manually, but if not, then the 400D would be better with most things automated (not the same as shooting in auto mode).
  18. capescuba

    capescuba Supporting Member

    Thanks all. Erik, I have that exact DPReview site open already ;) So now I have to look for a 400D / Lens kit! ....
  19. zepplock

    zepplock Guest

    capescuba - just go to any store and try both D40 and 400D.
    I didn't like the feel of Canon (for some reason).
  20. capescuba

    capescuba Supporting Member

    I will do for sure.

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