Resurrecting My Photography--Lenses and Software Advice

Started Sep 10, 2018 | Discussions thread
greenmanphoto Senior Member • Posts: 2,909
Re: Resurrecting My Photography--Lenses and Software Advice


Welcome back! Good choice with the D500. It's a GREAT camera!

skylon wrote:

I've been out of the loop for ~3 years and finally want to get back into shooting semi-professionally. The last go-round I was shooting with a Nikon D700 FX and a D7100 DX. I was editing with Capture NX, which I loved.

You can still get current versions of Capture NX, as well as NX-D, which would probably work pretty well for you, if you're used to Capture NX. I can't comment too much on this, as I've not done much with it. It didn't seem very stable, and seemed to slow things down, on my iMac the last time I tried it, a few years back.

Currently, I have the D750 FX alone, and have never upgraded to software that supports it's RAW files. I am getting a D500 DX later this week, and I am looking for software that does all or most of what Capture NX was capable of (I had NX-D briefly, but never got the hang of it.) I am working on a Windows PC. I don't want to use any app that is cloud-based or pay-per-month. Is Photoscape X a good option? Raw Therapee?

I have been considering Photo Ninja, and will probably download a free trial again to try it out. I had downloaded a trial before, but made the mistake of doing so in the middle of a busy time for me, and I didn't really give it a try before the 30 days ran out.

Others like Phase One's Capture One ( and DxO PhotoLab ( Both have 30-day free trials, and both have distinct advantages and disadvantages. Up to you as to which are important enough. Another program that's new and gaining some advocates is Luminar, by Skylum. They USED to be Mac-only, but they've since changed that and began offering versions for Windows, as well.

As for lenses for the D500. Right now I have the Nikon 16-35mm f4 FX, and the 24-120 f4 FX. I plan on adding the Sigma 10-20 f3.5 (I had an older version of it when I had the D200/D300, and I loved it) for the very wide end. What would be a good option for the longer end up to 200mm (300mm on DX)? The Nikon 2.8 lenses are out of my price range, what are the better not-too-expensive options from Sigma/Tamron? One lens I am looking at is a used Nikon 70-200mm f4 VR. Thoughts?

I think you'll probably need a mid-range lens, as well, and since you're buying new, get the kit with the 16-80 f2.8-f4. It's a pretty darn good lens, and is well worth the kit price. As a standalone purchase, though, it's overpriced, IMHO. So, definitely consider the kit for that lens.

As for a long telephoto, the Tamron 70-200 G2 is a GREAT lens. I have the G1 version, and I compared it with the Nikon 70-200 f4 at my semi-local camera store. I shot with both inside and outside the store. The store has a ceiling painted a matte black, and the Tamron had an easier time focusing there than the Nikon. It acquired focus quicker and seemed more accurate, as well. I also took them both outside and shot oncoming traffic with both. Again, the Tamron seemed quicker and more accurate. At that time, there was a rebate on the lens, and they were about the same price before the rebate. Add in the rebate, the fact it includes a tripod foot, and is an f2.8 versus an f4, and it was a no-brainer, for me. I've been VERY happy with the Tamron 70-200 f2.8 VC, and the new one is even nicer. It's probably not as cheap as a used Nikon f4, but it would be new, have a tripod foot, and be an f2.8 lens.

I shoot as a generalist...I've done a few weddings (hated it), a lot of events/parties, some portrait/fashion work, and a lot of road races/track & field, and some work for online newspapers. So, a mishmash.

If anyone can give me some feedback on a good lens setup and a good photo editing program I'd appreciate it....thanks.

Good luck, and again, welcome to the D500 club!


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Sam B.
D200, 16-85mm, 35-135mm, Sigma 10-20 f3.5 N8008s, Gitzo 2531, Induro DM-01 ballhead
Certified Texas Master Naturalist
Proud WSSA Member #260!

 greenmanphoto's gear list:greenmanphoto's gear list
Nikon D300 Nikon D700 Nikon D500 Nikon D850 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 16-85mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR +13 more
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