Equip your d700 with "cheap" glass

Started Dec 8, 2010 | Discussions thread
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Uncle Frank
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Equip your d700 with "cheap" glass
Dec 8, 2010

When I bought my first dslr, I was dismayed to find that the camera body was only a small part of the investment. I had to spend twice that amount to equip it with good lenses. That ratio still holds true if you buy constant aperture zooms or ultra fast primes. But now that I'm shooting a d700, I'm able to acquire great glass at impulse buy prices.

The trick is in the d700's bright viewfinder, which allows me to accurately focus vintage manual focus lenses. As well, the d700 meters with AI lenses, and will control the exposure in all modes other than shutter priority. And you can specify the AI lens you're using, so the exif data will be correct.

Working with mf prime lenses requires technique, but it's not rocket science, and it has added new dimensions and richness to the hobby for me. And speaking of richness, it's ridiculously inexpensive. Here's my current lightweight kit, and a sample from each lens.

20mm f/3.5 Nikkor-UD AI'd (circa 1969, KEH for $254)

28mm f/3.5 K (circa 1980, AI version at KEH for $76)

50mm f/2 AI (circa 1978, KEH for $65)

105mm f/2.5 AIS (circa 2001, KEH for $199)

The prices I've shown are current KEH lisitings for copies rated in EX condition. Note: I'm not an employee of KEH, I just like their lenses.

If you haven't tried it yet, I'd encourage you to pick up an inexpensive MF lens, like a 50/2 AI. It will open up new vistas for you to explore.

Best regards, Uncle Frank
Galleries at fdrphoto.smugmug.com

 Uncle Frank's gear list:Uncle Frank's gear list
Nikon D700 Olympus PEN E-P5
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