I'm looking to purchase a D40X. I've come across 2 kits, but I am not sure which one is the better deal. I thought posting here might help me out with my decision. I'm just looking for something light, will be used mostly for taking pictures of our upcoming baby, plus when we go camping to take some nature shots.
Kit 1 - from Ritz Camera - 2 zoom lens outfit: Nikon AF-S DX ZOOM-NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G ED Lens, AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 55-200mm f/4-5.6G ED, Nikon Gadget bag, Nikon School DVDs = $999.99
Kit 2 - from B&H online - Nikon 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor Lens and Two SanDisk 2GB Ultra II Secure Digital (SD)Card = $945.95
OR... am I better off just buying the body and another lens? I just want to stay around $1000 for everything.
I have the D40. I purchased it with the 18-55 and later bought the 18-135. I wish I had gotten the 18-135 in the first place. Great lens. If you get the 55-200, I would recommend getting the one with VR, vibration reduction. I got it and really like it, but a little later got the 70-300VR and now I rarely use the 55-200VR. All you ever need is the 18-135 and the 70-300VR. B&H is a great place to shop and very reptuable.
The 55-200 is a very slow focusing lens. (I have one and it drive me nuts.) Mine is not as sharp as the kit lens either. It is the only Nikon lens I wish I had not bought - I got it the first week it was out.
The 55-200 slides slowly into focus even on a D2x or D200.
The 18-135 is much faster focusing. Maybe 10 times faster.
The range of the 18-55 is not long enough for the stuff I like to shoot as I have the 18-70 and it is almost long enough for candid people shots.
That 55-200 in the Ritz package is an obsolete lens. Nikon's introduction of the 55-200VR at $250 has made the older 55-200 basically worthless from a marketing stanpoint (it still takes good pictures) so places are putting together these kits to dump the lenses because they can no longer sell them. For this reason, I say stay away from the Ritz kit.
What to get depends on why you want the D40x. If you're choosing this camera for it's compactness then you may prefer a smaller lens i.e. the 18-55 over the 18-135. The 18-135 is better optically and has more zoom range but it's also bigger and heavier. OTOH if you go with 18-55 + 55-200 then you've got more zoom range than the 18-135, but 2 smaller lenses are bigger and heavier than 1 medium-sized, and you add the inconvenience of changing lenses. Personally, I found the 18-55 a little short for my kind of general purpose shooting and I was changing lenses often. I switched to the 18-70 and found I greatly appreciated the little extra range.
A trip to Best Buy should get you the opportunity to see and hold all this stuff in person so I highly recommend you do that before buying. Once you do that, what I suggest is that you buy your camera with a single kit lens, either the 18-55 or 18-135, depending on what you prefer (I'd lean heavily towards the 18-135). Then, if you want to add a telephoto later, get the $250 55-200VR or even better the $500 70-300VR.
I think this thread is dead but for anybody's future reference:
A coworker just asked me about this same Ritz package and I have him the same advice, that the 55-200 is obsolete and he'd want the newer VR lens. I took a drive with him up to Ritz on our lunch break and talked to the manager of the store about substituting the 55-200VR into the kit and she did it for $50 more. A much nicer deal - I advised him to go for it.
I really appreciate everyone's input! I am going go to go with the B&H package... or maybe see if the people at Ritz can do something similar. My birthday is in a few weeks, so this will be my present!!
I just thought I would update, as I placed my order with B+H last night!
After doing even more research, I opted to go with the D40 (not the 40x as I originally planned on doing) I just felt the D40 was a better option for me. I did end up getting the 18-135mm lens - I just thought it would suit my current needs better. With the money I saved by not getting the 40x, I was able to get a small case, SB-400 flash, & extra battery.
I figure in a few years, I'll most likely upgrade to a better body... and honestly, the way that technology goes, I'm guessing there will be better cameras then too, as compared to now. The technology will only continue to grow.
Thanks again for all the help!! I really appreciate it