New to DSLR, thinking about getting nikon 3200

Started Oct 13, 2012 | Discussions
Folex
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New to DSLR, thinking about getting nikon 3200
Oct 13, 2012

The 2 types of pictures I want to accomplish are low light and macros. I am planning to buy a Nikon 3200 and then get a Nikon Nikkor AF-S 35mm f/1.8G DX len.  The only thing I'm not completely sure about is how difficult a prime lens is. From what I gather you can't adjust the zoom. Any ideas ?

Mako2011
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Zoom with feet
In reply to Folex, Oct 13, 2012

Folex wrote:

The 2 types of pictures I want to accomplish are low light and macros.

For low light shots without a flash the High ISO ability of the D3200/D5100/D7000 will be handy.  In terms of Macro though, I find off camera flash to be really necessary towards getting the best results. The D3200/D5100 are less suited for that as they do not include flash commander mode.  There are workarounds though. If you're simply speaking of the occasional close up in ambient light..a good macro lens will suffice with any of the 3 bodies.

Folex wrote:

.......get a Nikon Nikkor AF-S 35mm f/1.8G DX len.  The only thing I'm not completely sure about is how difficult a prime lens is. From what I gather you can't adjust the zoom.

There are only 2 solutions to getting a non-zoom lens to zoom.  Zoom with your feet, or buy a zoom lens. 

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AikenMooney
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Re: New to DSLR, thinking about getting nikon 3200
In reply to Folex, Oct 13, 2012

I think you need to do a lot more research/study or whatever.

A prime lens is a fixed focal length. The 35mm f1.8G is a 35mm period. On a dx body it will give you a field of view of a 52mm lens on a full frame dslr or 35mm file camera.

A zoom such as the 18-200 means you can use any focal length betweeen 18mm and 200mm.

For low light I would suggest a D5100 as I think it will show less noise at higher ISO's. For macro I would think either body would work.

Suggest more study before you spend $, lb, euro, yen or whatever.

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Folex
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Re: New to DSLR, thinking about getting nikon 3200
In reply to AikenMooney, Oct 13, 2012

Is there a zoom len under $300 that would be decent for low-light? It seems like prime lens are the only choice for under $800 for low light.  I've read alot about people walking around with prime lens to get the perfect shot. Is it hard to find the right spot, is there any ability to finely focus it with the camera and does it grow annoying ?

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toomanycanons
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Re: New to DSLR, thinking about getting nikon 3200
In reply to Folex, Oct 13, 2012

Folex wrote:

The 2 types of pictures I want to accomplish are low light and macros. I am planning to buy a Nikon 3200 and then get a Nikon Nikkor AF-S 35mm f/1.8G DX len.  The only thing I'm not completely sure about is how difficult a prime lens is. From what I gather you can't adjust the zoom. Any ideas ?

Since you haven't shot with a DSLR, get that combination and find out from your own perspective.

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jay bbe
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Re: New to DSLR, thinking about getting nikon 3200
In reply to Folex, Oct 13, 2012

Hi Folex.  For low light shooting I too would recommend a D5100, according to camerapricebuster  it costs less than a D3200 in the UK.

The 35mm f1.8 is a popular lens but you might find it too restricting.  The kit lenses are good but there are other options such fast standard zooms lens.  I use a Tamron 17-50 f2.8, other third party stabilised fast standard zooms options like the VC version of my lens or Sigma’s OS equivalent enable slower shutter speeds when hand holding a camera to photograph a stationary subject.

There are various options for macro shooting, however I would suggest you start with just one lens, 35mm or zoom, whilst you learn how to use your camera.

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ErikkaSmith
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Re: New to DSLR, thinking about getting nikon 3200
In reply to Folex, Oct 13, 2012

Folex wrote:

Is there a zoom len under $300 that would be decent for low-light?

Yeah, the AF-S Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G has an MSRP (Manufacturer Suggested Retail Price) of US$199.95 and that means you can get it cheap when you buy in some specialty shops.

The benefit of using a prime lens is that it will generally give you better Image Quality than a zoom lens in the same price range. Also, with prime lenses, it will be less expensive to implement a larger aperture (bigger f/ number) because of its less intricate design.

The cost of this is that you have to "zoom with your feet"; that is, you have a fixed focal length.

If you plan on getting a prime lens, consider first where your shooting will be. Will it be indoors? a studio environment with a tripod? in tight situations like in parties? in places far away from your subject like theaters and weddings? Once you know your distance,  you can choose which focal length would be best suited for you.

28mm , 35mm, 50mm (1.4 or 1.8), and 85mm are your options for your normal zooms. If you feel like being a sniper, then you also have longer telephoto focal lengths like the 300mm f/2.8G which has an impressive bokeh.

 ErikkaSmith's gear list:ErikkaSmith's gear list
Nikon D3 Nikon D3100 Nikon D7000 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G +2 more
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Folex
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Re: New to DSLR, thinking about getting nikon 3200
In reply to jay bbe, Oct 13, 2012

I went to bestbuy since it was the only place where I could physically touch both within a 40mile radius. I put in a memory card and took pictures with both. Just looking at the screen the picture quality looks very close. I was only able to test the 5100 in somewhat low light and it was very good. I went with the 5100 because you can flip the screen to view what you're looking at along with flipping it backwards to protect it when you're not using it. I also liked having a flick switch on top to switch between taking the picture on the viewfinder and taking it on the screen.   The only issue I have now is PsCS3 doesn't suppost 5100's RAW which is kind of a bummer. I am going to try and find a way around it.

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jay bbe
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Re: New to DSLR, thinking about getting nikon 3200
In reply to Folex, Oct 13, 2012

Hi Folex, enjoy your new camera.

View NX2 is an alternative, you can use this for basic raw processing; a CD for this programme was included when I bought my DSLR a few years back, it's also available for download from Nikon's website. I like Capture NX2 for processing my raw images, Lightroom seems popular too.

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Mako2011
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In reply to Folex, Oct 13, 2012

Folex wrote:

I went to bestbuy since it was the only place where I could physically touch both within a 40mile radius. I put in a memory card and took pictures with both. Just looking at the screen the picture quality looks very close. I was only able to test the 5100 in somewhat low light and it was very good. I went with the 5100 because you can flip the screen to view what you're looking at along with flipping it backwards to protect it when you're not using it. I also liked having a flick switch on top to switch between taking the picture on the viewfinder and taking it on the screen.   The only issue I have now is PsCS3 doesn't suppost 5100's RAW which is kind of a bummer. I am going to try and find a way around it.

Congratulations.  I have CS6 which does support D5100/D7000 NEF's.  I never open them with CS6 though as it does not support Nikon ADL.  I use ViewNX2/CaptureNX2 for may major Raw tweaking then convert to 16-bit Tiff to do what Photoshop does best.  Good Luck.

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Folex
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Re: New to DSLR, thinking about getting nikon 3200
In reply to Folex, Oct 13, 2012

This is the first forum I've entered newly and got quick and insightful input. Thank you very much, its greatly appriciated.

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toomanycanons
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Re: New to DSLR, thinking about getting nikon 3200
In reply to Folex, Oct 13, 2012

Folex wrote:

This is the first forum I've entered newly and got quick and insightful input. Thank you very much, its greatly appriciated.

You can "get around" your software not recognizing nefs from the D5100 by just shooting jpegs for now.  Don't tell me that at this early stage of your DSLR life you've been convinced you need to shoot only raw?  That isn't so.

Good choice on the D5100.  My choice to get one had nothing to do with the "flippy" screen but with its sensor and overall function.

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Mako2011
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Oh yes it is :)
In reply to toomanycanons, Oct 13, 2012

toomanycanons wrote:

Folex wrote:

This is the first forum I've entered newly and got quick and insightful input. Thank you very much, its greatly appriciated.

You can "get around" your software not recognizing nefs from the D5100 by just shooting jpegs for now.  Don't tell me that at this early stage of your DSLR life you've been convinced you need to shoot only raw?  That isn't so.

Yes it is!!  I made the mistake of shooting JPEG only when I first started then learned to shoot RAW only.  I still kick myself in the butt when I look back at some of those early once in a lifetime JPEGs and realize how much better they could have looked if I had the NEF to play with now.  Only takes a second or two to turn a NEF into the exact same JPEG only file the camera would have taken using the free VIEWNX2 software.  Turning the camera JPEG into a NEF is impossible.

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toomanycanons
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Re: Oh yes it is :)
In reply to Mako2011, Oct 13, 2012

Mako2011 wrote:

toomanycanons wrote:

Folex wrote:

This is the first forum I've entered newly and got quick and insightful input. Thank you very much, its greatly appriciated.

You can "get around" your software not recognizing nefs from the D5100 by just shooting jpegs for now.  Don't tell me that at this early stage of your DSLR life you've been convinced you need to shoot only raw?  That isn't so.

Yes it is!!  I made the mistake of shooting JPEG only when I first started then learned to shoot RAW only.  I still kick myself in the butt when I look back at some of those early once in a lifetime JPEGs and realize how much better they could have looked if I had the NEF to play with now.  Only takes a second or two to turn a NEF into the exact same JPEG only file the camera would have taken using the free VIEWNX2 software.  Turning the camera JPEG into a NEF is impossible.

GTFO.

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Reilly Diefenbach
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Re: Oh yes it is :)
In reply to Mako2011, Oct 13, 2012

Gotta shoot raw for pity's sake.  Can't be throwing away two thirds of the information provided by the sensor before you even get it into the computer. White balance after the fact and highliight headroom being but two prohibitive advantages.

My oft repeated :^) recommendation is Lightroom 4.2, which if you study it a bit is the fastest and easiest way to tweak your pics.  Does a really good raw conversion *automatically* when you download from the camera.  Set your sharpening, clarity, vibrance, etc. and save it as your default import preset or create others to select with a click.  Hell of a lot easier than fiddling with in camera adjustments.

Lightroom will also provide the sterling benefits of CS6 ACR 7.2 Process 2012 which has to be seen to be believed without having to upgrade your Photoshop, which would then be relegated to the occasional work with layers and masks or content aware fill.  Lightroom opens Photoshop with a right click anywhere in your pic.

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baloo_buc
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Re: New to DSLR, thinking about getting nikon 3200
In reply to Folex, Oct 13, 2012

Folex wrote:

I went to bestbuy since it was the only place where I could physically touch both within a 40mile radius. I put in a memory card and took pictures with both. Just looking at the screen the picture quality looks very close. I was only able to test the 5100 in somewhat low light and it was very good. I went with the 5100 because you can flip the screen to view what you're looking at along with flipping it backwards to protect it when you're not using it. I also liked having a flick switch on top to switch between taking the picture on the viewfinder and taking it on the screen.   The only issue I have now is PsCS3 doesn't suppost 5100's RAW which is kind of a bummer. I am going to try and find a way around it.

Use the latest Adobe DNG converter (free) then use your software. The only drawbacks are the added step of batch converting and the lack of several improvements of ACR. For the first there is nothing to do but to minimize that update ACR to the highest version you can use with your software.

 baloo_buc's gear list:baloo_buc's gear list
Nikon D90 Nikon D5100 Olympus PEN E-PL5 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 16-85mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR Tokina AT-X Pro 12-24mm f/4 DX II +12 more
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Folex
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Re: New to DSLR, thinking about getting nikon 3200
In reply to Folex, Oct 13, 2012

I was worried that no camera would satisfy me until I put the camera on the tripod and let it stay open for 30 seconds. Just simply stunning, complete darkness the pictures look like middle of the day with no distortion . I now have 1 major issue and 1 minor issue. Since I live in Maine it gets cold during the nights. I assume this isn't good for the camera. Is there any way to keep the camera warm?  Also is there a way to focus a camera that you're unable to see the subject (due to being pitch black out)

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ErikkaSmith
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Re: New to DSLR, thinking about getting nikon 3200
In reply to Folex, Oct 13, 2012

Folex wrote:

I was worried that no camera would satisfy me until I put the camera on the tripod and let it stay open for 30 seconds. Just simply stunning, complete darkness the pictures look like middle of the day with no distortion . I now have 1 major issue and 1 minor issue. Since I live in Maine it gets cold during the nights. I assume this isn't good for the camera. Is there any way to keep the camera warm?  Also is there a way to focus a camera that you're unable to see the subject (due to being pitch black out)

Yeah, if it gets really cold and humid/wet (from snow or mist), the moisture might damage your camera. When you store your camera in your camera bag, stash a few bags of Silica Gel (the same ones inside vitamin bottles, shoe boxes, etc.) with it. It will suck the moisture.

I might have misunderstood your 2nd concern, but if you are having problems focusing on your subject in extremely dark places, switch on your AF-Assist Lamp. It will turn the lamp on when your focusing so the camera knows where to focus. However, if the lamp would be bothersome for other people in the dark room, then manual focus is the way to go.

Also, I may add in that you can update your Adobe Camera Raw plug-in of your Photoshop so you can view RAW files from current cameras.

 ErikkaSmith's gear list:ErikkaSmith's gear list
Nikon D3 Nikon D3100 Nikon D7000 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G +2 more
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Folex
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Re: New to DSLR, thinking about getting nikon 3200
In reply to ErikkaSmith, Oct 13, 2012

ErikkaSmith wrote:

Folex wrote:

I was worried that no camera would satisfy me until I put the camera on the tripod and let it stay open for 30 seconds. Just simply stunning, complete darkness the pictures look like middle of the day with no distortion . I now have 1 major issue and 1 minor issue. Since I live in Maine it gets cold during the nights. I assume this isn't good for the camera. Is there any way to keep the camera warm?  Also is there a way to focus a camera that you're unable to see the subject (due to being pitch black out)

Yeah, if it gets really cold and humid/wet (from snow or mist), the moisture might damage your camera. When you store your camera in your camera bag, stash a few bags of Silica Gel (the same ones inside vitamin bottles, shoe boxes, etc.) with it. It will suck the moisture.

I might have misunderstood your 2nd concern, but if you are having problems focusing on your subject in extremely dark places, switch on your AF-Assist Lamp. It will turn the lamp on when your focusing so the camera knows where to focus. However, if the lamp would be bothersome for other people in the dark room, then manual focus is the way to go.

Also, I may add in that you can update your Adobe Camera Raw plug-in of your Photoshop so you can view RAW files from current cameras.

I like the gel idea, I'm not sure if I'm going to go with gel, but def something that sucks out the moisture.

I tried Adobe PS CS3 but the ACR only goes to 4.5. According to adobe to get the higher ACR's you need to upgrade to CS4-6 respectively.

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toomanycanons
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Re: New to DSLR, thinking about getting nikon 3200
In reply to Folex, Oct 14, 2012

Folex wrote:

ErikkaSmith wrote:

Folex wrote:

I was worried that no camera would satisfy me until I put the camera on the tripod and let it stay open for 30 seconds. Just simply stunning, complete darkness the pictures look like middle of the day with no distortion . I now have 1 major issue and 1 minor issue. Since I live in Maine it gets cold during the nights. I assume this isn't good for the camera. Is there any way to keep the camera warm?  Also is there a way to focus a camera that you're unable to see the subject (due to being pitch black out)

Yeah, if it gets really cold and humid/wet (from snow or mist), the moisture might damage your camera. When you store your camera in your camera bag, stash a few bags of Silica Gel (the same ones inside vitamin bottles, shoe boxes, etc.) with it. It will suck the moisture.

I might have misunderstood your 2nd concern, but if you are having problems focusing on your subject in extremely dark places, switch on your AF-Assist Lamp. It will turn the lamp on when your focusing so the camera knows where to focus. However, if the lamp would be bothersome for other people in the dark room, then manual focus is the way to go.

Also, I may add in that you can update your Adobe Camera Raw plug-in of your Photoshop so you can view RAW files from current cameras.

I like the gel idea, I'm not sure if I'm going to go with gel, but def something that sucks out the moisture.

I tried Adobe PS CS3 but the ACR only goes to 4.5. According to adobe to get the higher ACR's you need to upgrade to CS4-6 respectively.


You've reached your quotient for questions/answers on this thread.  Just shoot by your own self for awhile and see what you come up with.

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