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I surrender! The D200 is too much camera for me.

Clonskeagh

Dublin, IE
188 posts

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Clonskeagh Registered since 14th Oct 2004
Fri 24-Mar-06 10:10 AM

Greetings to You All —

I wonder are any other ex-D70 users in the same sad state as me?

Tonight I'm going to shoot some stuff in a live musical theatre situation, and it is with deep regret and a sense of shame and guilt that I've decide to leave my D200 at home, and just bring my trusty D70.

Shooting live shows in available theatre lighting for a year and a half with the D70, I got results which delighted both me and those for whom the photos were intended. Because the nature of the work sometimes entails a lot of aggressive cropping afterwards, I was so buzzed when the D200 with all its extra pixels made its appearance, and when I got mine I was the happiest man in the world. I instantly found myself in a different league. I felt like a "real" photographer, as opposed to an enthusiastic amateur. The D200 felt fantastic, it looked fantastic, all the controls were instantly accessable and I felt as if I could do anything with it.

But I couldn't. Time after time a huge percentage of the results were blurred to the point where I was convinced that there was something wrong with my camera. Surely shots this much out of focus couldn't all be down to me? ( I'm talking hand-held here). With the D70 I always had a sackload of keepers to choose from, but with the D200 I was lucky to have 40%, sometimes even less. I read all the posts religiously, back-focus problems, accidental switching of c-s-m toggle, focus area, focus priority but still the lousy results. I then read Thom Hogan's piece, and this respected man explained it all — and I had to put my hands up. It WAS me. My technique just isn't up to the job. I had gone too far too fast, and was in the same position as a weekend driver who's been handed the keys of a Maserati. I'm just not up to it, and I hate admitting it. It's a serious blow to my D200-induced self-image of the casually expert photographer, in demand at all the best gigs.

Last week I went to shoot a musician on his farm, and the first sneaking doubts had crept into my mind. So I took the D70 with my 70-200mm f2.8 VR attached and the D200 with my 17-55mm f2.8 attached (as you see, good glass is not the problem). When I got home my suspicions were confirmed — over 90% keepers with the D70, about 40%-50% with the D200.

So what do I do now? It would kill me to get rid of the D200, it's such a beautiful piece of work, but I just can't take the chance of blowing commissions. I suppose I'll just have to put my head down and work until I see improvement. The problem is I'm not young any more, and I suspect that from here on in neither my eyesight or my steadiness of hand is going to get any way better. Thank goodness I held onto my D70.

Thanks for listening.
Yours with a sense of loss —

Jim

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

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