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Subject: "What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?" Previous topic | Next topic
AudsDad Silver Member Nikonian since 16th Oct 2007Wed 27-Aug-08 03:52 PM
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"What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"


Naperville, US
          

I am very happy with my D300, but if the D90 doesn't skimp on any key features or build quality, one may be able to trade in a D300 for a D90 for very little additional cost and get the same camera in a smaller and lighter package.

Anyone have views on the likely areas in which the D300 will be a superior camera to the D90 in either features or in construction? I know some issues may come down to personal preference.

Regards,

Peter

  

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gpoole Platinum Member Fellow Ribbon awarded for his excellent and frequent contributions and sharing his in-depth knowledge and experience with the community in the Nikonians spirit. Awarded for his very generous support to the Fundrasing Campaing 2014 Writer Ribbon awarded for his article contributions for the Articles library and the eZine
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Holmes375 Registered since 09th Sep 2006Wed 27-Aug-08 04:05 PM
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#1. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 0


RO
          

Action photography goes to the D300, hands down. The focus points, group dynamic configurations, dedicated AF-On button, and programmable release priorities are not available with the D90.

Low light AF accuracy will probably go to the D300, also.

Settings banks are an important feature for some.

AF Fine Tune seems to be very popular.

Improved grip availability for the D300, important for many working shooters.

I think the D90 is going to be a great camera for a lot of enthusiasts but a D300 it ain't. SHould make for an excellent top-o'-the-line amateur body.

Kudos to Nikon.

-Holmes
http://holmes.zenfolio.com/

  

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jimsanders Silver Member Nikonian since 25th Mar 2008Wed 27-Aug-08 04:20 PM
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#2. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 0


Buffalo, US
          

You can check the technical differences in this Nikon chart (it is about halfway down the document). There are 4 pages of features.

  

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Cookies35 Silver Member Nikonian since 18th Apr 2007Wed 27-Aug-08 11:15 PM
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#11. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 2


NL
          

Great chart, Jim! Thanks!

What really confuses me, though, is how is it that the D90 is the only camera listed which doesn't show SHOOTING DATA during playback?

???

Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!?????!!!??

-- LaDonna

_________________________________
A little knowledge is a dangerous thing

  

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jimsanders Silver Member Nikonian since 25th Mar 2008Thu 28-Aug-08 12:40 AM
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#14. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 11


Buffalo, US
          

Good eye LaDonna, but on this page (click on the Tech Specs tab), it does list SHOOTING DATA as one of the Playback Functions. In fact, it lists a couple of others too that are not on the chart:

Full frame
Zoom
Slideshow
Pictmotion
Histogram
Shooting data
Highlight point display
Auto image rotation
Sound playback
D-Movie playback Thumbnail (4, 9, 72 segments)
Calendar

Hmmm, sound playback? Does that mean there's a microphone too, or is there canned music you can play back?

Maybe they didn't think anyone would notice

  

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Cookies35 Silver Member Nikonian since 18th Apr 2007Thu 28-Aug-08 12:01 PM
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#19. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 14


NL
          

>Hmmm, sound playback? Does that mean there's a microphone too,
>or is there canned music you can play back?


Thanks, Jim!

And to return the favor, yes it has a mike.

-- LaDonna

_________________________________
A little knowledge is a dangerous thing

  

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f4ier Registered since 19th Nov 2006Wed 27-Aug-08 04:27 PM
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#3. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 0


AU
          

As has been said, the D300 has:

Weather seals
Magnesium body
51AF points
15 cross-type sensors (D80/90 only has 1)
MultiCAM 3500DX AF system
Much more customizable
Quick access to custom set of settings -- very useful for changing conditions (sports, weddings etc.)

The differences is worth the extra expense for an events or sports photographer, but probably not so much for portraitist/landscapist.

I really like the D90's HD movie mode, but I'm disappointed that it will only take 5min videos. No doubt a year or two from now we will have storage/battery-limited continuous video capture so I'll probably pass on the D90 (subject to NAS ).

Gallery Under Construction

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Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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Redwood76 Registered since 05th Mar 2008Wed 27-Aug-08 05:05 PM
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#4. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 3


UK
          

I would hazard a guess that the 5 minute limit is to stop overheating. It's probably quite conservative and will no doubt improve with future models if it proves a success.

  

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adjuh Registered since 19th May 2006Wed 27-Aug-08 05:18 PM
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#5. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 4
Thu 28-Aug-08 10:25 PM by adjuh

NL
          

the D300 has a much larger buffer, so you can keep shooting in RAW.

grtz
Ad

  

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f4ier Registered since 19th Nov 2006Wed 27-Aug-08 05:22 PM
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#6. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 4


AU
          

You could be right, it probably works less to be able to do longer lower-res clips.

  

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gpoole Platinum Member Fellow Ribbon awarded for his excellent and frequent contributions and sharing his in-depth knowledge and experience with the community in the Nikonians spirit. Awarded for his very generous support to the Fundrasing Campaing 2014 Writer Ribbon awarded for his article contributions for the Articles library and the eZine Nikonian since 14th Feb 2004Wed 27-Aug-08 05:24 PM
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#7. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 0


Farmington Hills, US
          

Metering with AI (i.e. non AF lenses). Maybe not important to many users, but I have many more MF/AI lenses than AF lenses.

Gary in SE Michigan, USA. Co-organizer of the Southern Michigan Chapter
Nikonians membership - My most important photographic investment, after the camera.
D4, D810, D300, D90, F6, FM3a (black), FM2n (chrome)
YashicaMat 124, Graflex Speed Graphic 4x5
My Nikonians Gallery & Our Chapter Gallery

  

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Arkayem Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in flash photography Charter MemberWed 27-Aug-08 07:40 PM
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#8. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 0


Richmond Hill, GA (Savannah), US
          

>I am very happy with my D300, but if the D90 doesn't skimp on
>any key features or build quality, one may be able to trade in
>a D300 for a D90 for very little additional cost and get the
>same camera in a smaller and lighter package.
>
>Anyone have views on the likely areas in which the D300 will
>be a superior camera to the D90 in either features or in
>construction? I know some issues may come down to personal
>preference.

Peter,

The D300 is 'superior' only because it offers lots of advanced features that are not on the D90, and that are often not needed by the serious amateur.

The D300 won't make better images than the D90 under most situations, but the D300 can make images in certain special situations where the D90 won't be able to make an image at all. Things such as weather sealing so your camera will survive a sudden downpour, a metal body that can withstand lots of abuse, 15 cross-type focus points for fast accurate focus in very dim conditions.

I need a pro camera for my work, but I like to use a smaller, lighter camera when on vacation. I am currently using a D70 when traveling, but now I am seriously considering a D90 for this role. I'd like all the new capabilities not found on the D70, and especially the movie capability.

The D90 would also make a very capable backup camera for wedding and event photography.

Russ
http://russmacdonald.smugmug.com/
http://NikonCLSPracticalGuide.blogspot.com/

  

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smartz8184 Silver Member Nikonian since 29th Sep 2008Tue 07-Oct-08 12:41 AM
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#44. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 8


San Antonio, US
          

Hello,
I am the kind of person who always has some level of buyers remorse when making high end purchases. I currently have a Nikon F3 with numerous lenses, a Nikon D70 with kit lens and DX 18-200 VR. I have been struggling between the D90 and D300 for several weeks and now made my decision. I ordered the D300 body from AAFES online (military store) for $1253.00 after a couple of vouchers I used. They do not carry the D90 but I could have gotten it for $950 from Ritz using their 10% off for military. Main reasons I settled on D300 was metal body, use of my old MF AI lenses. My photography pretty much is family stuff, wildlife/nature and closeup work. I am planning on an FX body in the future and could not really support buying the D700 at this time, thinking is that when the a D700 replacement is announced, the D700 will drop in price and I can pick one up then, either new or used. Question is, did I make the right choice or should I have gone with the D90? The video ability on the D90 is not a major player for me and I figure that as this capability is enhanced, the 5 minute time constraint will be improved.

  

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seoulman Registered since 04th Oct 2008Fri 10-Oct-08 05:07 PM
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#46. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 8


KR
          

>Peter,
>
>The D300 is 'superior' only because it offers lots of advanced
>features that are not on the D90, and that are often not
>needed by the serious amateur.
>
>The D300 won't make better images than the D90 under most
>situations, but the D300 can make images in certain special
>situations where the D90 won't be able to make an image at
>all. Things such as weather sealing so your camera will
>survive a sudden downpour, a metal body that can withstand
>lots of abuse, 15 cross-type focus points for fast accurate
>focus in very dim conditions.
>
>I need a pro camera for my work, but I like to use a smaller,
>lighter camera when on vacation. I am currently using a D70
>when traveling, but now I am seriously considering a D90 for
>this role. I'd like all the new capabilities not found on the
>D70, and especially the movie capability.
>
>The D90 would also make a very capable backup camera for
>wedding and event photography.
>
>Russ
>http://russmacdonald.smugmug.com/
>http://NikonCLSPracticalGuide.blogspot.com/

Well said, except on one point. How many of us use our cameras as hammers??? Unless you are a PJ, a metal (magnesium) body doesn't mean much. The D90 will serve the needs of most professionals. Therefore, all amateurs will be more than satisfied with the performance of the D90.

  

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lovemy8514 Silver Member Nikonian since 05th Oct 2007Wed 27-Aug-08 09:49 PM
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#9. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 0


Columbia, US
          

- Max shutter speed could be a biggie.
1/4000 D90
1/8000 D300

- Max frame rate is another, especially for action.
4.5 D90
6 (Up to 8 with grip.) D300

- Flash sync a little higher on the D300 1/250 versus 1/200 w/ built- in.

- More NEF options on the D300.

- SD D90 versus CF D300 (That would mean all new cards for me. )

- 96% viewfinder D90
100% D300

J a m e s
My Gallery

Using his camera as a pen, it is the photographer's job to tell a story: Each page authored in frozen moments of time.

All of my work is dedicated to my father, Terry Lee Geib (1943-2009)

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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gkaiseril Gold Member Nikonian since 28th Oct 2005Wed 27-Aug-08 10:36 PM
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#10. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 0


Chicago, US
          

Possibly not mentioned:

Image Authenication
More remote control options through the 10 pin remote terminal
WIFI/Wired Network remote control and image transfer
More braketing options

George
My Nikonian Galleries

  

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kgendron12 Registered since 18th Jan 2006Wed 27-Aug-08 11:37 PM
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#12. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 0


Burlington, US
          

Is all this stuff $700 worth of stuff to someone who may be coming from a D40 or D50 (like myself).

This is what I'm battling with now. Having used the D50 for 2 1/2+ years and now looking at the difference between the D90 and D300 I don't know if the extra features are something that I need to spend $700 on.

My biggest things were fps and high ISO performance. The 4.5 is loads better than my current 2.5 and I currently only have a 4 image RAW buffer vs the D90's 6 or the D300 20 or so. 4 is to small for me, but based on my shooting I think I can get away with 6.

Am I really going to notice a difference in the AF points. 51 or 11 coming from 5 or a D40 user coming from 3? For us the 11 point is a big upgrade.

I don't know, I'm beginning to think that it might not be worth the $700 for someone in my shoes. A hobbiest who likes to take lots of good pictures, takes photography seriously but has no aspirations of doing it professionally. Yet I still want the best bang for my buck. That bang might be in the form of the D90.
_____________________________
My D50 Gallery:
http://handicap18.smugmug.com/

My Disney World Gallery (2006 & 2007 trips all with Nikon D50)
http://s31.photobucket.com/albums/c351/kgendron12/

D50 / 18-135mm / 50mm f/1.8 / 70-210mm f/4 / 70-300mm VR / Sigma 30mm f/1.4 / Tamron 90mm f/2.8 Macro

  

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Cookies35 Silver Member Nikonian since 18th Apr 2007Thu 28-Aug-08 12:08 AM
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#13. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 12


NL
          

>Am I really going to notice a difference in the AF points. 51
>or 11 coming from 5 or a D40 user coming from 3? For us the
>11 point is a big upgrade.


I'd recommend you go back and read every post you can, until you throw up, that was made in the D100/D200/D300 about using the D300 in actual practice, from the time it landed in their hot little hands until now. Read what people were really excited about, what they're still excited about (not necessarily the same thing at all!), what they're disappointed about, and what is making some of them ditch their D300's for D700's. I think you'll be surprised at how many D300 users turn OFF the 51-points in favor of the more manageable, and in places I've read more accurate, 11-point option. You'll also probably be surprised at how many D300 users are still disappointed with the noise it produces, hard as that it to comprehend for those of us currently using "noise-makers."

And there are probably other things you'll read that you wouldn't have suspected either, coming from the people who DID have the extra bucks to spend and did so. Asking US (this is the D70/D80/D90 forum after all), who do not necessarily HAVE a D300, and in particular asking those of us who don't have a D300 but that doesn't mean we didn't WANT one, this may not actually be the most informed bunch of folks to clear up the issue for you.

After you've read all those D300 posts in the D300 forum, I think you'll be more in a position to call it, whether you're interested in plopping down that kind of change for a camera that seriously doesn't sound like in a lot of areas it's going to shoot the pants off a D90.

It seems like the D90/D300 issue is going to be much like the D80/D200 issue: almost identical pix (even identical pix?), but the D300 has a larger, heavier body with more dedicated buttons (important for pro-shooters) and more user-definable combinations of custom settings (also important for pro's, particularly those who shoot in three or four distinct, but standard, situations, like somebody who does outside photojournalism during the week and weddings during the weekend).

If you ever get to the point where you actually NEED these features, you'll probably also be generating a photography-based income which can afford them. Until then, it's just "want" as far as I can tell. And in my opinion, the step-up from a D40 to a D90, in terms of convenient-to-use, will already blow your mind. It's just in a different ballpark from the D40/D40x/D60 altogether.

Do you need it? Most likely not at all.

Will you USE the extra features if you get it? Read the D100/D200/D300 forum threads and see if that helps you find the answer.

Do you WANT it?

Now there's the question ......



-- LaDonna, still processing ...

_________________________________
A little knowledge is a dangerous thing

  

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eugenegold Registered since 05th Aug 2008Thu 28-Aug-08 01:17 AM
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#15. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 13


woodburn, US
          

the way i see this is that wither you need that extra step (D90)before reaching higher or can you make the jump to a D300 right away. Because from experience i ave found out that as soon as you buy one camera and use it for a while you want to upgrade even further, That is t case with me im originaly a D80 user but have access to my brothers D300 at any time, after using it some im thining that maybe its worth jumping to the D700 right away. The D90 on the other hand is an awsome camera as a backup for a pro or a good family camera i see it as a perfect camera for the average consumer wanting good pictures, but for a seriuos ameture its better to invest more and get the options that come with the higher price tag.

"there is more to be seen in one photograph then in a whole movie"

  

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lofling Registered since 19th Jun 2008Thu 28-Aug-08 02:07 AM
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#16. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 13


SE
          

I agree, LaDonna, but I also think that the D300 users are comparing to the D3/D700, much as the D40/50/70/80 user is comparing to the D300 what to get.

And even if you turn of the 51 AF points and use 11 points, aren't there 15 cross type points, for more accurate AF? How much of difference is this? $700? I don't know.

Another thing not mentioned is if the D90 will have MLU. I thought shutter delay would be ok on the D80, but taking pics in the 1/10-1/50 s range with a long lens puts this in a different perspective. The mirror slap is noticeable.

  

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Cookies35 Silver Member Nikonian since 18th Apr 2007Thu 28-Aug-08 11:30 AM
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#18. "RE: Mirror Lock-Up"
In response to Reply # 16


NL
          

>Another thing not mentioned is if the D90 will have MLU.

The problem is that the official specs never mention what a camera doesn't have, so it's hard to point you towards any official evidence. But everywhere I've checked on the web says that the D90 doesn't have mirror lock-up. There seems to be a lot of discussion about this feature in particular because for so many it's a deal-breaker.

-- LaDonna

_________________________________
A little knowledge is a dangerous thing

  

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vmiller798 Registered since 26th Jun 2008Mon 13-Oct-08 03:14 PM
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#47. "RE: Mirror Lock-Up"
In response to Reply # 18


US
          

Just an FYI the D90 does have MLU. It's described on page 246 of the user manuel.

Vince
Canal Winchester, OH

Nikon 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR
Nikon 18 mm-135 mm - f/3.5-5.6 G ED-IF AF-S DX
Nikon 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G ED-IF AF-S VR
Nikon 50mm f/1.8 D AF
Nikon 80-200mm f/2.8D ED AF

All on a D90
"In life you must cause enough trouble to have fun, just not enough to go to jail"

  

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briantilley Moderator Deep knowledge of bodies and lens; high level photography skills Nikonian since 26th Jan 2003Mon 13-Oct-08 03:33 PM
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#48. "RE: Mirror Lock-Up"
In response to Reply # 47


Paignton, UK
          

>Just an FYI the D90 does have MLU. It's described on page 246
>of the user manual.

That's true, but as explained on the page you reference, the D90's Lock Mirror Up facility is only for cleaning the camera's low-pass filter. The discussion in this thread was about Mirror Lock-up for reducing camera vibrations while shooting, which the D90 does not have.

Brian
Welsh Nikonian

  

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Tony_Jeffree Registered since 13th Oct 2004Mon 13-Oct-08 03:39 PM
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#49. "RE: Mirror Lock-Up"
In response to Reply # 47
Mon 13-Oct-08 03:40 PM by Tony_Jeffree

Manchester, UK
          

>Just an FYI the D90 does have MLU. It's described on page 246
>of the user manuel.

Just an FYI in response - what is most usually understood by MLU is a mode of operation where you raise the mirror, leaving the shutter closed, then as a separate operation, you release the shutter. The point of MLU is to reduce camera shake caused by mirror slap. What is described on page 246 is NOT that at all - it is the ability to raise the mirror and open the shutter so that you can clean the camera's sensor to get rid of dust etc.

Having said that, what the D90 *does* have, wich is almost the same (but not quite) is an exposure delay mode (custom setting d10, page 172) where the shutter doesn't release until approx. 1 second after the mirror is raised. In some respects, I find this more convenient than "true" MLU, because you don't have to fiddle around so much; however, the 1s delay may not always be long enough to kill the vibration from the mirror.

Regards,
Tony

My Nikonians Gallery

  

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gkaiseril Gold Member Nikonian since 28th Oct 2005Mon 13-Oct-08 11:13 PM
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#50. "RE: Mirror Lock-Up"
In response to Reply # 49
Mon 13-Oct-08 11:20 PM by gkaiseril

Chicago, US
          

In the Pro level cameras, the MLU locks the mirror up and keeps it there until is unlocked. A delay may look like it but it will slow down a bracketed or continuous shooting rates.

Consider the camera mounted on a astronomical telescope by a T adapter, the D90 delay may not be enough of a delay for such a tenuous mount to stop the vibrations.

George
My Nikonian Galleries

  

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davidd1833 Silver Member Nikonian since 26th Feb 2006Thu 28-Aug-08 04:24 AM
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#17. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 13


Sydney, AU
          

Wouldn't you know it, after all the D90 rumours going on for months, I finally gave up waiting, took several deep breaths and ordered a D300 a week ago, and now the D90 appears!

Oh well, look on the bright side, I've got a D300!





David

My Gallery

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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MotoMannequin Moderator Awarded for his extraordinary skills in landscape and wildlife photography Nikonian since 11th Jan 2006Thu 28-Aug-08 06:38 PM
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#22. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 13
Thu 28-Aug-08 06:41 PM by MotoMannequin

Livermore, CA, US
          

>I think you'll be surprised at how many D300 users
>turn OFF the 51-points in favor of the more manageable, and in
>places I've read more accurate, 11-point option.

For the record, putting the D300 in a 9- or 21-point dynamic AF group (IIRC there is no 11-point option) is not even remotely equivalent to starting with a camera with 11 AF point.

On the D300 the 51 points fill almost the entire frame. For dynamic tracking of moving objects, it's useful to limit how far away from the initial focus point the dynamic tracking can move. The classic example for me is waiting for a bird to flush off a perch. If I enable 51-point dyanamic, and pan with the bird as it flushes, the AF system will often think it's the perch that's moving and follow it off the edge of the frame. By limiting dynamic tracking, the AF system has to stay with the bird. That's not the same as having only 11 AF point scattered across the frame.

But, that said, the AF system is clearly a place where Nikon wants you to consider spending that extra money, and it's therefore a place where the D300 out-specs the D90. For people who aren't trying to track fast, erratically moving subjects, the D80/90 CAM1000 should be more than adequate.

>You'll also probably be surprised at how many D300 users
>are still disappointed with the noise it produces

That's because some people just like to complain, or spend too much time reading KR's advice on how to set up their camera. D300 is amazing, and only outclassed by D3/D700. I shoot up past ISO 800 without even thinking about it. I start to take action in software when ISO exceeds 1200 or so. If the D90 is at this level of performance or better, it will be a fantastic camera in that regard.

Regarding the question of D90 vs. D300, if I was making this decision now, and wasn't out chasing birds regularly, I'd probably go with the D90 (and I'd like the HD video, and wish it had the 4 banks of settings). The differences are pretty well documented now. If someone's been shooting a while with D40 or D50, then they should have a pretty good grasp on the value these differences will have to them.

Larry - a Bay Area Nikonian
My Nikonians gallery

www.tempered-light.com

  

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Cookies35 Silver Member Nikonian since 18th Apr 2007Fri 29-Aug-08 03:48 PM
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#35. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 22


NL
          

>On the D300 the 51 points fill almost the entire frame. For
>dynamic tracking of moving objects, it's useful to limit how
>far away from the initial focus point the dynamic tracking can
>move. The classic example for me is waiting for a bird to
>flush off a perch. If I enable 51-point dyanamic, and pan with
>the bird as it flushes, the AF system will often think it's
>the perch that's moving and follow it off the edge of the
>frame. By limiting dynamic tracking, the AF system has to stay
>with the bird. That's not the same as having only 11 AF
>point scattered across the frame
.

Thanks for correcting that! This is something I hadn't understood.

>That's because some people just like to complain, or spend too
>much time reading KR's advice on how to set up their camera.
>D300 is amazing, and only outclassed by D3/D700.

I brought this up not because the D300 doesn't handle noise better than other cameras, but rather to point out that like with all the other cameras it's very easy to get caught up in the hype. I think when the D300 came out people talked it up so much (along with the D2/D200 comparisons of the "same body in a smaller size") that a lot of people really thought they were getting a D3 in a smaller size, with fewer options of course but with the same noise performance. I wanted the OP not to fall into that same trap: sure you get better low-light performance but don't make the mistake that it is soooooo easy to make of thinking this is going to solve all my low-light problems. You have to weigh the cost against the extra low-light capability that you actually get, which might not be the extra low-light capability that you actually want. The question is whether the D300 is worth the extra $700. For some people, the answer may actually be no — just like for me a f/2.8 lens isn't worth the extra money either, because in the situations I shoot even f/2.8 just isn't going to do it for it. So I'd be in a sense "wasting" my money on an expensive f/2.8 zoom; what I need to do is come up with the money for a (potentially even more expensive) f/1.4 prime, or just put the money in my pocket. If the performance you get isn't the performance YOU need, or want, then spending $700 on what turns out to be half a solution might hurt your feelings.

>The differences are pretty well documented now. If someone's been shooting a while with
>D40 or D50, then they should have a pretty good grasp on the
>value these differences will have to them.

I'd beg to differ, and hope that in answering questions in our forums the experienced folks don't make this assumption. Some D40/D50 users are very experienced, both in photography in general and in using different camera bodies. But there are lots and lots of us who only know what the features on our D40/D50/D60/D70/D80 actually accomplish in a "what have you done for me lately" sense.

Reading specs on paper cannot teach a beginner what those specs actually accomplish in real-world shooting, and even that varies widely depending on what you shoot and how good you are at it. That's why we (beginners) ask the question: I can read the specs, and enumerate the differences, but "what value will these differences have to me?" I hope the vets don't stop answering these questions by referring to the reviews which merely "document" those differences. The truth is that before we actually use a camera of the same caliber, for a long time and in our own favorite shooting situations, and in particular start to run into the limitations of the camera of that caliber, will we have a clue as to what value-added those differences could have, if any. In the meantime please let us keep picking your brains!


-- LaDonna

_________________________________
A little knowledge is a dangerous thing

  

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MotoMannequin Moderator Awarded for his extraordinary skills in landscape and wildlife photography Nikonian since 11th Jan 2006Fri 29-Aug-08 04:38 PM
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#41. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 35
Fri 29-Aug-08 04:48 PM by MotoMannequin

Livermore, CA, US
          

>The differences are pretty well documented
>now. If someone's been shooting a while with
>>D40 or D50, then they should have a pretty good grasp on
>the
>>value these differences will have to them.

>I'd beg to differ, and hope that in answering questions in our
>forums the experienced folks don't make this assumption.

LaDonna - just to be clear, when I said, "the differences are pretty well documented now," what I meant was that the differences are pretty well documented in this thread and it was my way of saying, "there's no need to re-type what's already been said by 10 other people above me on this same page," something I consider to be bad form. I certainly didn't mean there's no reason to have a thread like this, as you have taken it.

Maybe feature lists read like swahili, but all anybody had at the time I typed that was a feature list. You didn't really expect me to re-type the feature list for you, right?

Larry - a Bay Area Nikonian
My Nikonians gallery

www.tempered-light.com

  

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Cookies35 Silver Member Nikonian since 18th Apr 2007Fri 29-Aug-08 05:11 PM
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#42. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 41


NL
          

just to be clear, when I said, "the differences
>are pretty well documented now," what I meant was that
>the differences are pretty well documented in this
>thread
and it was my way of saying, "there's no
>need to re-type what's already been said by 10 other people
>above me on this same page," something I consider to be
>bad form.


Oh, Iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii get it!

Well, then,

nevermind! (o^_^o)

-- LaDonna

_________________________________
A little knowledge is a dangerous thing

  

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lovemy8514 Silver Member Nikonian since 05th Oct 2007Thu 28-Aug-08 02:00 PM
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#20. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 0


Columbia, US
          

The bottom line:

Both the D300 and D90 are superb cameras. Both can capture stunning images when the photographer does his/her job correctly.

The D300 may have some advanced features that will benefit some users, but that doesn't make it a better camera than the D90...Just different!

If the D90 had come out at the same time as the D300, it would have been a tough decision for me to choose between the two.

In the end, either choice should make the user a happy camper.

Nikon is doing great things with their bodies. They are consistently raising the bar thanks to the competition, and we all end up benefitting in the end.

Choosing one body over another is a matter of personal preference, and has been said a million times before; The end result has more to do with the photographer than the camera.....

J a m e s
My Gallery

Using his camera as a pen, it is the photographer's job to tell a story: Each page authored in frozen moments of time.

All of my work is dedicated to my father, Terry Lee Geib (1943-2009)

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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lofling Registered since 19th Jun 2008Thu 28-Aug-08 07:16 PM
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#23. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 20


SE
          

>The bottom line:
>
>Both the D300 and D90 are superb cameras. Both can capture
>stunning images when the photographer does his/her job
>correctly.
>
>The D300 may have some advanced features that will benefit
>some users, but that doesn't make it a better camera than the
>D90...Just different!

Sorry, but I beg to differ. See the other opinions on AF. This is exactly why I am so disappointed, but not surprised. Because if the D90 would have the D300 AF system, there would be no good reason to buy the D300 except maybe AF fine tuning, 6-8 fps and possibly MLU.

>If the D90 had come out at the same time as the D300, it would
>have been a tough decision for me to choose between the two.
>
>In the end, either choice should make the user a happy
>camper.

Yes, I think so too.

>Choosing one body over another is a matter of personal
>preference, and has been said a million times before; The end
>result has more to do with the photographer than the
>camera.....

See above. I am chasing birds. I am almost sure there is a big difference between using a D80 and D300 for this. I also know that my D80 is not performing at the best in low light when it comes to AF. A crucial difference sometimes, that could be THE factor getting the shots.

Try take some pics of hummingbirds with a D80 and compare it to the D300. Which camera will give most keepers? I guess there will be a winner...

  

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lovemy8514 Silver Member Nikonian since 05th Oct 2007Thu 28-Aug-08 08:45 PM
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#25. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 23


Columbia, US
          

"Try take some pics of hummingbirds with a D80 and compare it to the D300. Which camera will give most keepers? I guess there will be a winner..."

True, but I've seen award-winning, amazing hummingbird shots taken with a D70!

J a m e s
My Gallery

Using his camera as a pen, it is the photographer's job to tell a story: Each page authored in frozen moments of time.

All of my work is dedicated to my father, Terry Lee Geib (1943-2009)

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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gkaiseril Gold Member Nikonian since 28th Oct 2005Thu 28-Aug-08 09:07 PM
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#26. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 25


Chicago, US
          

It boils down to really knowing how to use your camera to its best advantage.

George
My Nikonian Galleries

  

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PhoThomas Silver Member Nikonian since 05th Jan 2007Thu 28-Aug-08 09:29 PM
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#27. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 26


US
          

>It boils down to really knowing how to use your camera to its
>best advantage.

Very good point ! And this also means, that a person, which know his/hers D40 in and out, and can foresee challenges, can take better pics, than a person with a D700, which dont know much about this machine...


Thomas

  

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lofling Registered since 19th Jun 2008Thu 28-Aug-08 09:35 PM
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#28. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 25


SE
          

I didn't say that you can't take great award winning pics. I just said, that there might be a difference in how many keepers you get. I agree, the D80 can do a great job. And the D70 etc. Or a camera with MF. I have seen great pics of hummers taken with MF. But there was not statement how many tries were made to get those shots.

Of course a great photographer can do many things with a D40 than a bad photographer with a D700. But the pro might still miss more shots with the D40. And this alone can be worth $700.

See e.g. other replies above.

  

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lovemy8514 Silver Member Nikonian since 05th Oct 2007Thu 28-Aug-08 11:29 PM
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#29. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 28


Columbia, US
          

Very true!

J a m e s
My Gallery

Using his camera as a pen, it is the photographer's job to tell a story: Each page authored in frozen moments of time.

All of my work is dedicated to my father, Terry Lee Geib (1943-2009)

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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PhoThomas Silver Member Nikonian since 05th Jan 2007Fri 29-Aug-08 01:08 PM
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#30. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 28
Fri 29-Aug-08 01:12 PM by PhoThomas

US
          

>I didn't say that you can't take great award winning pics. I
>just said, that there might be a difference in how many
>keepers you get. I agree, the D80 can do a great job. And the
>D70 etc. Or a camera with MF. I have seen great pics of
>hummers taken with MF. But there was not statement how many
>tries were made to get those shots.
>
>Of course a great photographer can do many things with a D40
>than a bad photographer with a D700. But the pro might still
>miss more shots with the D40. And this alone can be worth
>$700.
>
>See e.g. other replies above.

Point taken

And that's also very relevant for my way of looking at my own D80.

I really like it, but the things that limits me - the areas, where I would like to see more keepers - is in low light where higher ISO and lower noise would help, and faster/more reliable AF for action and low light.

I've tried a D300 - and I'm attracted. But have to consider the value of a wider lens/tripod and other stuff, versus a new body. It's about keepers and limitations...


Best regards
Thomas

  

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lofling Registered since 19th Jun 2008Fri 29-Aug-08 04:07 PM
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#39. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 30


SE
          

Yes, the problem for me is that I don't make money, like jstar, on my photography. In my opinion, the D300 is totally worth $700 more (or whatever the difference is).

My problem now is, I can upgrade to the smaller, lighter, SD-card D90 and a 35 f2 or Sigma 30 f1.4 and still have money left over (even though this does not help me with my hummer shots) compared to if I just get the D300 and I also have to buy CF cards. Is that missed shot once in a while really worth spending $700 extra?? Can I really afford it (I keep telling myself that over a few years, that is not so much...)? Tough question for me.

  

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jstar Registered since 29th Jul 2008Thu 28-Aug-08 03:27 PM
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#21. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 0


US
          

To me, as a working professional, I need the D300, and the extra $700 is worth it just for the focusing. If I miss a spectacular shot at a wedding because of focusing (I have), I may have just lost $700 in that one shot. So, the focusing alone is worth the extra money. The extra stuff that the D300 has is just icing on the cake.

If I was an amateur, and was looking for a small camera to take with me wherever I go that will do a very nice job, I wouldn't hesitate to get the D90. It has some really nice features.
But, I don't think it could stand up to the rigors of professional use.


Jim Bolen, CPP
Play of Light Photographics
Boise, Idaho
www.playoflightimages.com

  

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LATENTA Registered since 21st Feb 2007Thu 28-Aug-08 08:40 PM
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#24. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 21
Thu 28-Aug-08 08:49 PM by LATENTA

US
          

..and you can actually buy a D300 today. Not so with the D90...
For me, the 6 oz. difference tips the scale toward the D90.

  

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Hank1215 Registered since 24th Mar 2008Fri 29-Aug-08 01:50 PM
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#31. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 24


US
          

>..and you can actually buy a D300 today. Not so with the
>D90...
>For me, the 6 oz. difference tips the scale toward the D90.
>

6 ounces! You do realize that is 2 ounces less than a carton of milk a kindergarten kid drinks with his lunch! When people start worrying about 6 ounces it's time to stop taking pictures and get in the gym for a while.

  

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LATENTA Registered since 21st Feb 2007Fri 29-Aug-08 02:32 PM
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#32. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 31


US
          

>>
>
>6 ounces! You do realize that is 2 ounces less than a carton
>of milk a kindergarten kid drinks with his lunch! When people
>start worrying about 6 ounces it's time to stop taking
>pictures and get in the gym for a while.

Just a guess: You don't have RA. However, I do...

  

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Cookies35 Silver Member Nikonian since 18th Apr 2007Fri 29-Aug-08 03:31 PM
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#33. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 31


NL
          

>6 ounces! You do realize that is 2 ounces less than a carton
>of milk a kindergarten kid drinks with his lunch! When people
>start worrying about 6 ounces it's time to stop taking
>pictures and get in the gym for a while.


Normally I'd agree with you, but after taking up this heavy hobby I realize he's seriously got a point.

Six extra ounces on the camera means a 33% increase in weight, and hence strain, on one of the weakest joints in the human body — the wrist. (Notice how people get carpel tunnel in their wrists, but not in their finger joints?) And that's not counting the weight differential of the memory cards. As somebody who has already acquired wrist problems by taking up photography with a D80 (yes, I'm quite the wimp; but hey, I'm a girl, so I have an excuse! ), I've got to the point where even the weight of the cards makes me think twice.

Secondly, for those with smaller budgets and perhaps more modest equipment, six extra ounces (and the associated extra girth) of camera could mean having to upgrade to a heavier tripod, a heavier ballhead, even a bigger (and therefore heavier) bag. That weight, and overall volume of stuff you have to lug around, adds up.

It's not for nothing that so many pros and advanced amateurs are "discovering" the D40. After a day in the field, that stuff simply gets heavy!!!!

-- LaDonna

_________________________________
A little knowledge is a dangerous thing

  

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Holmes375 Registered since 09th Sep 2006Fri 29-Aug-08 03:43 PM
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#34. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 33


RO
          

>It's not for nothing that so many pros and advanced amateurs
>are "discovering" the D40. After a day in the field,
>that stuff simply gets heavy!!!!

Not to mention the great pictures those silly little D40s keeping churning out

-Holmes
http://holmes.zenfolio.com/

  

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gkaiseril Gold Member Nikonian since 28th Oct 2005Fri 29-Aug-08 03:49 PM
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#36. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 34


Chicago, US
          

In the swamps of Florida, I have seen photographers using garden carts to carry their tripods and 600mm telephotos. Even a D40 with a 600mm telephoto lens or largere lens is quite a load to carry!

George
My Nikonian Galleries

  

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Cookies35 Silver Member Nikonian since 18th Apr 2007Fri 29-Aug-08 03:53 PM
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#38. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 36


NL
          

>In the swamps of Florida, I have seen photographers using
>garden carts to carry their tripods and 600mm telephotos. Even
>a D40 with a 600mm telephoto lens or largere lens is quite a
>load to carry!


Aw c'mon, let's try to keep the argument reasonable! I mean, by the time you're carrying a 600mm telephoto lens with a tripod to support it, who cares what P&S you've got hanging off the back of it!

-- LaDonna

_________________________________
A little knowledge is a dangerous thing

  

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gkaiseril Gold Member Nikonian since 28th Oct 2005Fri 29-Aug-08 04:09 PM
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#40. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 38


Chicago, US
          

A lot of the weight is now in the lens, even with the 105mm Micro with VR.

George
My Nikonian Galleries

  

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Cookies35 Silver Member Nikonian since 18th Apr 2007Fri 29-Aug-08 03:50 PM
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#37. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 34


NL
          

>Not to mention the great pictures those silly little D40s
>keeping churning out


Yeah, there's that, too. It's enough to make you crazy, isn't it?

-- LaDonna

_________________________________
A little knowledge is a dangerous thing

  

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HT Registered since 20th Apr 2008Sat 30-Aug-08 09:15 AM
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#43. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 0


AU
          

I went from a D50 to a D300 about six months ago. I grappled with the same issue, although of course at the time I had to choose between a D80 and a D300.

The price difference, for me anyway, was money well spent; the D300 is more solidly built and is more durable than the the D80/90 (by a big margin), and the AF is simply awesome.

The D300 was also a camera I thought I could grow into as my experience grew, and about six months later I think I made the right call, I am still learning, and still enjoying the D300. No regrets. Had I instead bought the D80 six months ago, I know I would now be wondering if I had made the right decision.

  

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BevanW Registered since 15th Aug 2006Tue 07-Oct-08 04:39 AM
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#45. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 43
Tue 07-Oct-08 04:40 AM by BevanW

US
          

The weight of your equipment may have very little to do with your physical condition. It really depends on what you are doing with your photography. I was just reading the late Galen Rowell's "Inner Game of Outdoor Photography" and he has a whole section on traveling light called "When you can't take it with you".

Quote: "I rarely take more than two bodies anywhere. If we cross paths on a mountain pass, I'll likely have my 14-ounce FE-10 or 18-ounce N80 with a 7-ounce 28-80mm f3.5-5.6D zoom...An attached lens pouch holds an 11-ounce 80-200mm f4.5-5.6D zoom and my trusty 20mm f4...total weight: 3 pounds." Now Galen Rowell was a mountaineer and well known for his fitness. He makes an important point that if your equipment weighs too much your are likely to stay close to your vehicle and not head up that trail or worse leave it behind.

I would imagine today he would probably just go with a D60, 18-55 & 55-200 as his ultra-lite kit and I am sure his photos would be awesome.

Of course if you are shooting in a studio then weight is a non-issue.

PS When I look at his photographs I find it hard to believe he shot some of this stuff with cheap glass. BTW...If you haven't read this book it really is a terrific read. Great stuff.

PPS I really have enjoyed reading this thread...I am too struggling between the D300 & D90.

Bevan

  

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Nutter Registered since 10th May 2007Wed 15-Oct-08 06:24 AM
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#51. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 45


Lake in the Hills, US
          

I have (for sale) a D70s and I too had the hard choice between the D90 and the D300. There are a lot of features Im sure I would use from time to time on the D300 that the D90 does not have. But then comming from a D70s there are a lot of features on the D90 that make it a great step-up from the D70s. There are only 2 things I can think of that I am sad the D90 does not have:-

1. A higher flash sync speed (my D70s had a 1/500 sync)
2. More shots in bracket mode, 3 just is not enough for HDR pictures

But I gain so much more (comming from a D70s) that what I loose out on (compaired to a D300) is not enough to make me buy a D300. So the D90 it is for me, been enjoying it for about a week now and couldn't be happier. Very soon I will be giving it a real test as I am shooting at a High School Play with limited light and no flash. My D70s managed OK but Im excited to see how the D90 will fair.

John

D90 | 18-200mm VR | 50mm f/1.8 | SB600

You miss 100% of the shots you don't take. - Wayne Gretzky

  

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PJinNJ Registered since 14th Mar 2008Thu 16-Oct-08 06:53 PM
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#52. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 51


Neshanic Station, US
          

For whatever it's worth. I'm a luck person and an early adopter of technology. I purchased a D3 early on and it's awesome, I also have a D80, D100 and D300. I recently purchased a D90 in leiu of the D300 which I gave away to someone. The D90 is as good if not better from a handling and or photographic perspective. Choose what allows you to capture the moments you like to capture and if technology is your "WANT/NEED" save your money and go directly to the D3. That will for at least a little while stop the wondering if you've got the equipment and get you back to the real question....do you have the talent to use whatever you've got.

  

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QuantumV1 Registered since 06th Jun 2008Wed 26-Nov-08 08:51 PM
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#53. "RE: What does D300 have over D90 that warrants $700+ diff?"
In response to Reply # 52


Falmouth, US
          

Thank you all so much for so your thorough and insightful comments on this topic. I have been thinking about upgrading from a d40x to either a d300 or a d90 and this forum has helped in many ways. That's one more thing I have to be thankful for tomorrow: Nikonians!

  

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