I'm a complete beginner to photography looking to get a start with an entry-level DSLR and classes at my university. After reading tons of good things about the Nikon D40, I think I'm ready to buy the kit with just the 18-55mm lens, the price for which seems to be about $470 or so.
However, as a poor college student, I'm trying to be as efficient with my money as possible, and I'm hoping to avoid a situation where I buy the D40 and then the price drops soon after when Nikon releases a new line of cameras. Should I be worried about this at all, or should I just go ahead and buy the camera now? Thanks in advance.
Go for it! They are cheap nowadays and easy to learn if this will be your first DSLR. My advice though, if you can get just the body only and get a Tamron 17-50 2.8 for $400.00. The reason why I suggested that lens is because sooner or later you will be replacing your kit lens with a faster one and the Tamron 17-50 2.8 is one of the finest one out there.
If you're worried about a price decrease, don't buy any new camera at all. Buy used. They're cheaper anyway. A barely used D40 goes for $350 at keh.com.
Besides, these days cameras are computers with a shutter and a lens mount. You can count on it being replaced within a short period of time.
And furthermore, the utility of the camera does not change. I have (sigh) seven Nikon SLRs, and every single one of them is "obsolete." The price of all three digital bodies has crashed compared to new; all of them can now be bought for around a quarter of what their original retail prices. The film bodies are worth about half of their original prices. Guess what? They all still make great pictures. If you're not going to sell it, don't worry about the potential price drops.
_____ Brian... a bicoastal Nikonian and Team Member
My gallery is online. Comments and critique welcomed any time!
There is no better time than now! I have had my D40 for five great weeks and I have used it and used it and used it, and I am just as happy today as I was the day I bought it. Go for it and don't look back - the time is now to unleash the photographic beast, so to speak.
The D40 is well along in its product cycle, so it has probably seen a fair amount of discounting. It may go lower, but probably as part of a kit with several lenses. In short, it may drop a bit, but the chances of a large drop at this point are probably not very high.
It's an absolute guarantee that the D40 will be discounted and eventually replaced after you buy it. The same is true for every camera you could imagine buying (except perhaps a used manual film SLR). This will have no effect on the pictures you take with any camera, which is where the value in your purchase lies.
If it was a week or 2 before Photokina and rumors in the works, then I'd say wait, but the current rumors are for a D3x & D90 this fall with a refresh of the consumer line (D40 & D60) probably not due until PMA next spring, or perhaps around Christmas. That's a long time to wait for the next great thing. If you really enjoy photography then the pictures you don't take between now and then will be a bigger loss than the obsolescence of your camera.
Great, thanks everyone, that's just what I needed to hear. Looks like I'll be picking up a new or used D40 kit sometime in the coming week. Any suggestions on where to do this? I hear Adorama is good, and I'll check keh.com.
I'll fix my profile bit too, sorry. I didn't pay enough attention to catch the rule about names.
I wholeheartedly agree with what most have stated. Go for it. I recently purchased one for my wife and she loves it. I mostly shoot the D200 but on occasions I grab her D40 for the weight, or lack thereof. Here is a great link that you can learn the ins-n-outs of the D40. Good luck and practice, practice, practice.
Are D40's still in production? There are still a few around here but when I bought the D40x the prices started falling dramatically and now the few dealers that have them are selling for about AU$650 with the 18-55.