Joining the Nikon world. Help Needed.

Started Dec 13, 2011 | Discussions thread
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Joining the Nikon world. Help Needed.
Dec 13, 2011

It is a sad day but one that must happen. Leaving Pentax and heading into the Nikon world. Bittersweet…but I am ready. I hate to let go of the complete reverse compatibility of all the old wonderful Pentax lenses, the in body stabilization, the weather sealing and above all the amazing colors produced, right out of the box by Pentax. However, there are a few frustrations that have simply chipped away at my patience…and the time has come.

So. I have been into photography for about 12+ years. Started in film a bit and have had a DSLR for about 6 now. So I would not call myself a beginner or greenhorn. However, I would not say that I am completely proficient either. Composition still is my biggest obstacle and I wonder whether this is a learned skill or simply a gift. I say this to give you all a bit of background to my abilities before I request your input. I know my way around DSLR’s and even with all of the advancing technology, Nikon 1, and similar, advancement of camera phones, etc…I still like a good DSLR in my hands.

I am about ready to pull the trigger on my first Nikon gear. This time around I would like to make sure I invest in good glass from the beginning…and I recognize that bodies come and go. Budget is a big concern as I simply don’t have that much to work with. Give or take $600…which I know isn’t much. I have no issues buying used gear on forums or through KEH.

Question 1. I have my eye on the D80. Can get it used around $300. From the reviews and reading I have done it is a solid performer. In body focus motor, high enough pixel count to do what I need, and lots of other features. Drawback is that it’s a bit aged…and High ISO sounds like a weakness. Is the D80 simply too old of a model to be buying in 2011? $300 is about as much as I want to spend on a body…as I said I would like to get a good lens or two…instead of getting kit lenses. The D90 seems out of reach money wise. So…is the D80 still respectable enough…and will it be a good entry for me into Nikon? I would prefer to stay away from the entry level D40, 60, 3100, etc. A mid level prosumer body preferred.

Question 2. Lenses. I REALLY want the 18-200VR. But it is way too much dinero. My ideal setup would be the 18-200mm VR, Tokina 10-24, and the 50mm 1.8. I do a lot of outdoor photography and the 18-200 probably would rarely leave the camera body. But since that’s out of the price range…what other options do I have? I don’t want plastic mounts and chinsey lenses.

Any recommendations for me as I get ready to join the Nikon crowd would be appreciated.
Thanks all!

Nikon D40 Nikon D80 Nikon D90
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