Hi! >Like everybody else (well almost everybody it seems) I'd like >to upgrade from my D200 to the D300.
Well, I am resisting the urge - for now
>I really like the 18-200 lens that I got with the D200 as I >don't have to schlepp other lenses when touring an walking.
That is also the main reason I like the 18-200, of course! It is incredible in that respect, and within its limitations, it is a superlative lens. But if you look at my profile (I know, not very modest) you'll see it's the last (read "latest") lens I have added to my kit... once I felt the need for a one-lens solution, that is!
>I am an amateur photographer wanting to become a serious >amateur and wonder if a D300 is not over kill for the lens I >intend using.
Now, I guess you are asking the question the "wrong" way round. Even if it is your only lens, why not go the D300 way, if...
... you are sure you either have discovered, used and mastered every nook and cranny of the numerous D200 features, and/or if you need the better noise quality of the D300! Now, there is also NAS, but then I can't discuss it rationally
>What are my alternatives...any advise would be appreciated
Well, work your D200 until you feel it is not up to the task, or get better glass, or both! The D300 has almost made the D200 obsolete, remember the D400 will do that to the D300, but good glass will always be good glass on any body! IMHO, the most reasonable way is glass, then change for the next model, or the one after that... but that is just my two cents!
I'm resisting the urge to upgrade to the D300. I'd much rather upgrade to the D3. However, my wallet is doing the resistance there.
Since you "really like the 18-200 lens", keep it. The D300 is not dependent on any particular lens, and that lens is capable of producing fine photos (I have one and like it for the same reason you do). Don't let it keep you from upgrading to the D300 *IF* the D300 has specific features you feel you need. IMHO, the advantages the D300 will bring for photos are primarily in the noise performance and the live view (which gives you the ability to take photos from positions where you can't see the viewfinder). I really miss the live view on the D200 and have resorted frequently to taking pictures blind.
Other than that, the D200 is still a great camera for an amateur, even for a serious amateur. If you're really going to be a serious amateur, you will want to build a glass collection. It's a tough call whether to spend your available funds on a new body or more glass. I've opted for glass, at the moment, but eventually I'll be upgrading the body also. The disadvantage is that I now have 20 kg of glass to carry around. Consequently the 18-200 gets used for walkaround a lot.
Nothing wrong with the 18-200. I have one myself. It's a good walk-around lens when ultimate weight is an issue, or if you are just taking shots at your kids birthday party. If shot at F/8 or so it is pretty sharp. The VR means you tend to leave your tripod at home. It does have alot of barrel/pincushion distortion but you can fix that post-process. The D300 works better with it than the D200 because it is a slower lens. On the D300 you can crank the ISO up to 2400/3200 and get about the same noise as you are getting from the D200 at 800. That lets you use the lens with better results in dimmer light.
The 18-200 lets you get more experience at many focal lengths. As you get the experience with the type of shooting you do, you will find yourself starting to answer your own questions on what other glass you need.
>Folks, > >Like everybody else (well almost everybody it seems) I'd like >to upgrade from my D200 to the D300. > >I really like the 18-200 lens that I got with the D200 as I >don't have to schlepp other lenses when touring an walking. > >I am an amateur photographer wanting to become a serious >amateur and wonder if a D300 is not over kill fo rteh lens I >intend using. > >What are my alternatives...any advise would be appreciated > >Rory
I just picked up a new 18-200mm AF-S VR Nikkor lens. this is my walk around lens for my D300 and also my D2XS. I have so many other F/2.8 and F/1.4 Pro Glass Nikkors that I use professionally so they all stay in the bag. The 18-200mm is a diversified lens that can handlle many situations. If you're not doing this for a business, it's a great lens to have.
Your reasons for liking the lens on the D200 shouldn't change if you are using it on the D300 - great walk around lens covering wide range and producing great images within certain parameters (and good to really good ones otherwise).
If it is a question of upgrading glass vs. upgrading body, that is a whole other discussion, and likely depends on what you are doing. For example, if you wanted to do macro and didn't have a dedicated lens and had to choose between upgrading to the D300 and buying a 105VR, I would get the lens. For any given set of lenses, though, the D300 is a nicer tool than the D200 (from my so far fairly limited time with it).
Thanks for all you candid replies (they have made me very happy).
I'm living in Japan right now and should be able to get one at a reasonable price so I'll take a look around Tokyo this weekend.
To my inexperienced eye, I thought that what I am getting from my lens was pretty darn good so, for now I am happy with it but, I didn't want to buy a body that was overkill for the lens that I will probably use 95% of the time.
The good news is that my wife has been telling me to buy a tripod (she must be tired of me resting the camera on her head - kidding - it was after I was trying to photograph the laser light display of Hong Kong last week and was not happy with the results) and has agreed to carry it when we go out taking pictures. So it is a new D300 & tripod this weekend.
"I am an amateur photographer wanting to become a serious amateur and wonder if a D300 is not over kill fo rteh lens I intend using."
Yes. Get some 2.8 glass and get the D400 later. Your D200 cost $1800 and now worth $700. The D300 will be worth $700 when the D400 comes out and you will still need better glass then IF you want to be a serious amateur.
My worthless opinion.
Warren Sacramento, CA
D200, 17-55/2.8, 70-200/2.8 VR, 18-200/3.5-5.6 VR, 28/1.4D AF, 50/1.4D AF
>Yes. Get some 2.8 glass and get the D400 later. Your D200 >cost $1800 and now worth $700. The D300 will be worth $700 >when the D400 comes out and you will still need better glass >then IF you want to be a serious amateur.
I agree with Warren. Unless you have a pressing need for higher ISO performance, spend your money on sharp fast glass instead of a new body. The main issue isn't about what capabilities you get in terms the range of shutter, aperture and ISO that you can shoot in, but rather the depth of field characteristics of wide aperture lenses. Primes and fast zooms enable much better depth-of-field qualities than slower variable aperture lenses.
Personally, better lenses have helped me improve my photography more than better bodies. And a good pro lens will last decades.
If you listen to this Thursday's (24 January) upcoming Image Doctors podcast, you'll find that on my trip to the Ecuador/Galapagos Islands, I took both my D3 and my D300 bodies. With the D3, I used some of the bigger, heavier 2.8 lenses. The lens I used exclusively on the D300 was the 18-200mm VR. I was using the D300 and 18-200mm combo as a lightweight, walkaround kit, and it was delightful in that capacity. Were results with the other lenses a little better? Sure, but I was able to make some really good 13x19inch prints that no one would complain about. Every lens is a compromise in some respect, but the 18-200mm offers a lot when smaller and lighter is important.
Maybe you can help, I don't understand the meaning of a DX sensor, and that Nikon came out with DX lenses for it. I have the F5, 17-35, 28-70, and 80-200, and am not sure how compatible they will be with the D300.
Also, would the D300 be a good choice for my son's soccer games? The D3 is out of my reach.
The DX-sized sensor is a bit smaller than the 35mm format. Rather than being 24x36mm, it's 16x24mm. The smaller format reduces the field of view of lenses, so they have many of the characteristics of a lens 1.5x their focal lengths. The lenses you have are great ones, and they'll work well on a D300. You'll particularly enjoy the 80-200mm for soccer, as it will have the field of view of a 120mm-300mm. If you used the 17-35mm a lot at its wides focal lengths (25mm and wider), you may want to supplement these lenses with a 12-24mm or 10-20mm lens. Nikon, Tokina, and Sigma all make good ones.
The 18-200 Nikkor is a great walkaround general purpose lens on the D300 as well as D200 bodies. It is not a "compromise" lens in the sense implied by some contributors of being somehow quite inferior and not deserving of mounting on high-end camera bodies. Of course at the extreme ends of its range, it is not as good as "Pro" low aperture bulky lenses. But, in the mid ranges and at mid apertures (closed down a few stops) most meticulous and perfectionist photographers (but not the obsessive ones!!) would be hard pressed to tell pictures taken with it from those taken with their 12-24, 17-35, 24-70,, and 70-200 Nikkors. Even if you have or plan to have, the superb Pro Nikkors, you will not regret buying (and retaining), the 18-200. It allows you to get good to superb shots that otherwise you might not get at all. That has been my experience with the lens and the others I mention
You should never buy a zoom lens that is more than 5x from the base zoom, In other words 18x5 = 90 18-90 zoom. The all in one zooms like the 18-200 have sharpness issues at the high end and low end because or all the lens elements involved in the zoom range.
My Main zoom lens is the tamron 28-70 f2.8.
Also, if you are using ttl with a zoom the single aperture zoom works best. the aperture shift zooms, eg 18-200 f3.5/f4.5 play havoc with ttl and flash.
- I saw a moon rainbow about an hour ago. I got a phone call - I was not dressed for outdoors and it was pouring with rain but I knew it would only last a couple of minutes so I got wet. Technical detail D200, tripod 17-55 at around 24mm, manual metering (because it works in much lower light than auto metering), manual focus at infinity, shoot at different exposures until i got a decent image on the rear screen. 30 seconds later it was gone. OK had there been time a pol in theory could have brought out more detail in the rainbow - if I could have seen correct rotation in the viewfinder A D3 or D300 and 14-24 or 24-70 might have done it marginally better. The main thing is to make the best of your chances with what you have rather than missing shots because you are hankering over better equipment. I am happy enough to with this unedited jpeg (I shot jpeg and RAW) to be having a wee dram of whiskey - or maybe two
I just got back from trying out an 18-200 at the Ritz in Estero FL. I was picking up a wrist strap and the guy let me put the lens on my D300. I took this shot. All I did was raise the exposure a little in Lightroom. Pretty nice image
Candidly, my 18-200 lens was disappointing using my D200, almost invariably muddy, but has produced visibly better images with the D300. Said another way, the newer body has made my investment in the 18-200 that much more valuable. My usual walk around lens, particularly sightseeing on narrow streets in Scandinavia and the Baltic states, has been the 12-24, which is an incredible investment. However, my latest vacation in Asia, particularly Angkor Wat, I found myself reaching for the longer lens with no loss in detail and lots more flexibility in cramped quarters and wide vistas alike. The 300 is so much more camera that all my lenses perform better, not only as to focus, sharpness and contrast, but also color, saturation, range, etc. etc. Just go for it. You won't be sorry. To use a cliche, Nikon now rules!
Images from a d300 are quite different from d200, quite strong in contrast. Do you want that?
D300 has very much faster AF and is also mechanically even better than d200, which is allready very good. Do you need this?
Noise from D300 has a more pleasant look. The color profile stays about the same from 200 iso to 1600 iso. That is good. D200 has very very nice 100 and 200 iso images. That is also good.
Would you need all this? Why? or Why not? You will make good pictures if you have creative idea's or talent. Lenses and camera can/might support you.
Of course I didn't really need a d300. However, my bird pictures at low light are better due to better AF and better mechanical quality of the camera (500 mm lens, sturdy tripod, iso200 or 400, 1/60-1/20s without motion blur). So, I get more nice pictures. When I have some time to be out there....
Thanks for al the adivse (pro and con) - I bought the D300 and will use it with the 18-200 intil I decide what my next lens should be - Nikon gear here in Japan seems to be a reasonable price so I'll invest during my stay here.
Hello, I've had my D300 for two weeks now and although I have several lenses, I haven't yet used anything but the 18-200. Maybe it's because I haven't had time to do much serious photography, but anyway, I'm loving the results I'm getting with the 18-200. I've been using AF-C with 51 focus points, shutter priority and getting fantastic results of my dogs running around the dog park. So, if you liked the 18-200 with your D200, I think you'll still like it with the D300 when you don't want to carry a lot of lenses. ...Phil
I'd go ahead and upgrade if you want the D300. I did and I haven't regretted it for a minute. It's just a better body in many ways.
As for the 18-200, I kept mine and shot it on the D300. It produces fine images. I've also used a bunch of my other lenses on the D300. They also produce nice images.
The key is this. I see the 18-200 as a special purpose lens. For travel and walking around where you don't know what shot is coming next and/or want the VR, it's the best lens in my bag. So if you need that kind of lens, keep it. It's great.
>I see the 18-200 as a special purpose lens. >For travel and walking around where you don't know what shot >is coming next and/or want the VR, it's the best lens in my >bag. So if you need that kind of lens, keep it. It's great.
I have to agree.
There is certainly better glass out there, but for general walking or travel, the 18-200 VR is about the best all around lens (for this application) I can think of. The best lens to own is the one that's always there when needed. I can't say I'd always want to be lugging around a 70-200 at all times... plus taking the chance of missing that wide angle shot!
The 18-200 VR is a must own (IMO) for just about everyone.
Fri 01-Feb-08 12:26 AM | edited Fri 01-Feb-08 03:58 PM by esantos
Not wasting your money at all. The 18-200 is even more versatile on the D300 due to the ability to bump ISO above 800. These pics would have been impossible on the D200. I just spent a weekend in Las Vegas with the 18-200. Following shots were taken at 18mm, wide open with ISO 1000/1200. Both hand held with VR on. Shutter was a slow as 1/20th.
Sorry links aren't working in Photobucket for some reason. Probably because the images belong to my private album which requires a login. But if you cut and paste the link into your browser you can see the image.
Fri 01-Feb-08 02:10 AM | edited Fri 01-Feb-08 02:18 AM by deliberate
>Sorry links aren't working in Photobucket for some reason.
I tried to post the "cleaned up" links for you, thinking that you had typo'd them, but I got the same results. Looks like the new forum setup is somehow mangling the legal URLs which you (and I) posted. Interestingly, it screws up slightly differently with Firefox and MSIE.
Oh well ...
- Don (Henderson, Nevada USA)
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Me: D300+D200 (raw/M-mode); support: Gitzo-1325 w/Markins M-10; glass: Nikkor 50mm 1.8, 18-70mm DX, 70-300mm VR, and Sigma 10-20 EX S/O: D70 w/Nikkor 18-200VR (which she just loves) ... I'm now pushing for creation of a new SkyScape forum!
The workaround to link to external images, especially those inside of private albums that require a login has been found and implemented. All of the external links in this thread, for example, now work.
No, the lens does nothing to negate the improvements on the D300 vs. the D200. With the D300 you get much better high-iso performance, and better overall color. If a lens is soft or slow does not hinder those enhancements, in fact a slow lens is better suited for a D300.
- the 18-200 has amazing sharpness for a zoom of this range - and is far better for sharpness than many other Nikon lenses - see Nikon's MTF at www.nikonimaginging.com >products for confirmation. On the minus side it has not got the same resolution (especially at 200mm) as some Nikon lenses, f5.6 at 200mm infinity can be less than ideal for AF performance, and it has some corner shading and field curvature issues - inevitable with an 11x zoom at the price point as you probably already know. Overall I like mine a lot too, and use it on the D300
Photography is a bit like archery. A technically better camera, lens or arrow may not hit the target as often as it could if the photographer or archer does not practice enough.
If that is your only lens I would strongly discourage you from upgrading to a D300. The slight advantages the D300 will bring over the D200 are not worth the loss of $900 or whatever the difference ends up being. Put that money in to glass.