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Thursday, 18 September 2008


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Good post, Mike. But let's be even a bit more blunt: if you can't take good pictures with a D80, you can't take good pictures. And no, I don't own a D80 and in fact have not owned any Nikon gear for years.

This is a great deal. Unless you need the bells-and-whistles features of the 'pro' model, this camera performs pretty much identically to the D200.

If I hadn't just bought myself a new digital, I would be more than sorely tempted; I'd be there.

pax / Ctein

Just out of curiosity, if you had to pick between the D80 or Pentax K10D, which one would choose? Why?

Wait a few weeks and the used d200's will be much more tempting..you can use the ancient lenses on them and have basic metering. Ah the good old d200, a forgotten camera.

Hey, I've got a kodak instamatic for sale...it's got a flashcube on it with one pop left. That's gotta be worth a few geedas??

The AF 24/2.8D is exacty what I'm using on my D80 most of the time. It does flare a bit, but otherwise it's a very nice lens.

That's the same reason I bought the D70s when the D80 came out :) These cameras are more than competent and all these new features coming out are more "nice to have" than needed.

For some time I've thought if there was no Pentax, I'd probably be shooting a D80. It offers what appears to be a very compelling mix of compact-but-not-too-tiny size with pretty much every important feature an enthusiast would want in a SLR. And no doubt, it's a very attractive deal right now.

I wouldn't recommend any of those lenses. The 18-55VR is nice but very slow, the 24mm doesn't work as well on digital as it does on film and also has horrendous CA (try the Sigma 24mm f/1.8), and the 18-70DX is a good lens but there are better alternatives.

When I had my D80 (now since upgraded to the Fuji S5 Pro), the best lens I used with it was the Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8. It gives you Nikkor 17-55mm beating picture quality at the price and size of the 16-85VR kit lens.

Lens bargain of the century.

Nothing better for people like me than when new equipment is introduced. Drives the prices of old stuff down, both used and end-of-run. I bought an Oly E-1 (mint) for $300 less than a year ago, and last week got an E-500 with the two lens kit for $400. Before that I got a 14-42 mm kit lens for $100 used. If you can tear yourself away from the need to own the latest gear but owning what you need instead, you can find bargains everywhere. For a while there it was not easy buying digital 2nd hand simply because there was not enough "good enough" equipment around. But even with manufacturers playing their cat and mouse game of limited production runs to limit availability, a little persistence pays off. And since most people spend more time shopping and buying than using, the stuff you do find is in pretty good condition.

Anyone have a guess at how low the new, body only price on the D200 will go before it disappears from stock?

Great recommendation!

Actually, this is exacly what I did about three months ago, when the local dealer offered the D80 with the 18-55 VR for EUR 600 (~ 860 US$) and I haven't regretted it for one second since. I used to have the Fuji S9000 and was quite surprised how great the difference is! (the only thing that bugs me now is the movie mode of the D90 - but you can't have everything).

I am looking forward to the 18-105 VR which is announced for end of September. This seems to be the optimal zoom range for me.

One great lens that I can recommend (but this is no secret) is the 50/1.8 which cannot be beaten in price and takes great portraits. Nice bokeh as well in my opinion.

Fwiw, you can also get an Olympus E-420 for a mere $440. I've owned both - never really liked the D80 and sold it off fairly quickly. But I love the 420 and I think it performs much better. (I really should provide a list of reasons why, but I'm just too lazy this early in the morning).

A superb camera with only a couple workable faults, most notably the meter. And I agree with Mike about the 24mm 2.8 for this camera - it's sufficient and a much better pair because of size/weight than one of the huge, heavy pro zooms.

Of course, I've recently been one of those "gotta have the new thing" guys, so I should probably keep my mouth shut.

I recently found my sister (poor college art student) a new Pentax K110D for $260. It was being cleared out at a big box store. I thought Pentax was the perfect system for her since she could pick up any of the old Pentax A and M lenses cheap and still have a lot of functionality (i.e. metering).

The D80 is tempting for me, being a current D40 user, but I think I will resist.

It was true when I was a boy in the 1950's and it's still true now...lens and film (now sensor). Everything else is special need or costly extra. The D-80 takes all of the same lenses as the D2X and has a very very very similar sensor to boot.

Financial strains due to illness in the immediate family has forced me to sell off my bigger $$$ equipment. In consolation I picked up a used D80 in mint condition for $450. What surprised me was where I found it. On a dealers shelf. I looked around the auction site and was unable to find one under $500. Like you said it's not cutting edge and it won't put you on anyone's list of one upsmanship but it's still a cool camera that takes great photos.

I don't know anything about the Nikon D80 but I do own the Pentax K10D. Pretty good camera, although I wish it would save in higher quality jpegs (see some photos http://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/post-your-photos/37084-autumn-coming.html. I can't be bothered with Raw images.

Did someone say the D200 will take the old Nikon Lenses? I hvae a whole set with my FA.


I own and recommend the following as a light travel kit: D80 (get an UPstrap RF!), 24/2.8 AFD, 50/1.8 or 1.4 AFD, high quality tabletop tripod (Manfrotto 709B). This all fits in a tiny Domke F-5XB shoulder satchel. Heck, get the lenses secondhand and you'll have the whole kit for around $1000.

"Did someone say the D200 will take the old Nikon Lenses? I hvae a whole set with my FA."

From the D200 "up" so to speak, the bodies take nearly all lenses going back to the ai manual focus days.

Also, if you input into the menu the max aperture and focal length, you get all meter functions, in M & in A.
That is one of the things separates the D#/D### models from the D## (D/90/80/60/40x/40) models

Curiously the 60/40x/40 actually accept even more nikon lenses. They can mount pre-AI. But no metering at all with them either.

Hi, Mike.
Just a question: Why do you suggested the 24mm/2.8 isntead of the 28mm/2.8, which, at a 35mm. equiv. would be a 42mm, closer to the mytical 40mm than a 36mm?

Nikon D80 or K10D? I would buy the K10D in an instant, because there is the 31 ltd. besides a bunch of other great lenses. If you think you need a zoom, you can get the 16-50/2.8 stabilized and sealed for about 600. Compare this to the Nikon offerings, it is ridiculous. The D80 is a fine camera (i had the D50 a few years ago), but the lenses or lack of them is not to be overlooked. Don't underetismate the effect lenses have on iq and also feeling and handling of the whole package.

But, if you need tilt-shift or the best flash exposure, get a Nikon, no discussion here.

Robert Roaldi said: "And since most people spend more time shopping and buying than using, the stuff you do find is in pretty good condition."
So true, so true. With my D50 I had a Sigma 24 1.8 that I bought used in mint condition for a bargain.

Yeah, another thing: I hate to be dependent on 3rd party lenses so often with Nikon. (Especially primes and affordable zooms).

Mike is still right by telling about the offer, because if you want a lot of fun for not too much money, get such a kit.

best always

I do walk around with a D80 and a 24mm f/2.8. Put -38 in Red/Green Chromatic Aberration in Lightroom and you're good to go. I like the 35mm f/2 alot, too.

Actually if you pay more than $349 for a D80 you may be overpaying.

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