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DPChallenge Forums >> Hardware and Software >> Nikon D70 - to buy or not to buy?
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11/04/2004 07:39:12 PM · #1
Nikon D70 owners please give me some feedback, and let me know if I am making the right choice. I am looking for easy manual focus and the feel of a film camera. Shutter speed is also VERY high on my list of wants. If I make the switch, what do I need to go with it?

All feedback is welcome. Thanks.
11/04/2004 07:45:14 PM · #2
I love mine. I traded up from a Coolpix and found it pretty intuitive. Controls are similar. Menus are similar. Camera is terrific. I was very pleased. It is also very fast.

In terms of what you'll need, see my post on lenses in this thread.

Edit: Oh, I forgot to say battery life is fantastic!

Message edited by author 2004-11-04 19:47:53.
11/04/2004 07:47:36 PM · #3
Your portfolio already has very nice photos, so you need to know why you feel the need to change to a DSRL over the 5700. What lense do you need that is not already included in your 5700's range. If it is a greater zoom, then are you prepared for the added weight?

A solid D70 system will run you an easy 5 grand. Including body, wide angle, protrait, tele-zooms, tripod, head, media cards, flash, camera bag, etc. You can certainly do it for less, maybe 3 grand, but you seriously need to know what you are trying to gain over what you now have.
11/04/2004 07:54:46 PM · #4
My thing is this, I've only owned the D70. I bought it because I loved the N75 (film) and wanted to go digital as the rising costs of film killed any profit I had. I bought only the body as the lenses included in my N75 kit work perfectly. I am dissapointed at a few things about the D70.

1. No ISO below 200 (unless i'm doing something wrong?)
2. The newer faster lenses aside from the 2.8 50mm for 99 bucks, are just too expensive (other brands cheaper maybe? I don't know)
3. the 6.1 effective megapixels are great, but the photo you get is only 10x6 and some change (3008x2000) could be bigger as the olympus E-10 I use at work has a larger shot size but is only 4.0 megapixel. (can anyone fill me in as to why a lower resolution camera has a 'bigger' shot capability. Another note, the E-10 is only 144 pixels in resolution as where the D-70 is 300. I assume (and know up to 11x14) that the D-70 is more sharp. I'm soon ordering some 20x24's enlarged from my D-70, but have seen the enlargements from the E-10 (which is discontinued now from what i understand) seem 'softened'. I can only chalk this up to the 4.0MP

My only question is, does the extra resolution of the D-70 make up for the larger size of the photo from the E-10?

All in all, I'm happy with my D70 but would love to have a D2x. OH baby!
11/04/2004 08:04:00 PM · #5
As soon as I'm able, I'll be buying a D70 for myself. You might be interested in reading the review from this web site:
//www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/d70.htm

I really enjoy his reviews and you might find some good information there.
11/04/2004 08:05:02 PM · #6
I moved up to the D-70 from my 5700. Alot of the buttons are in the exact same place as on the 5700, so that is great.

magicshutter-It matters not the print size (11x14, etc.), it only matters in the PIXELS. Depending on what you are printing and the quality you want. ie: 3008x2000= at (resolution) 150 is 20.05x13.33in or at 300 is 10.03 x6.67in.
You are able to increase the RAW output files up to 6144x4085ppi ( I need to try that and see how it looks). Which is 20.48x13.62in. at 300ppi (in PS CS).
The 200 ISO is comparable to 100 ISO for Canon
11/04/2004 08:11:03 PM · #7
Originally posted by magicshutter:

Another note, the E-10 is only 144 pixels in resolution as where the D-70 is 300.

I think you are really confused about "resolution".

An image file does not have an inherent "per inch" setting. If your D70 images are being tagged as "300 ppi" and your E-10 images as "144 ppi", that is the camera firmware setting that, but it has absolutely no meaning to the captured images.

"PPI" (pixels per inch) is just a tag that is arbitrarily applied to an image. Let's say you have an image that is 3000 pixels x 2000 pixels. At 100 ppi, that would be a 30" x 20" print. At 200 ppi, it is a 15" x 10" print. At 300 ppi, it is a 10" x 6.67" print. At any of those sizes, the only thing that has changed is the size of each camera pixel on the print. The smaller the pixel, the better and more detailed the print will look.

I'm probably doing a bad job of explaining it, perhaps this link will do a better job.

Just realize that any default "PPI" for an image is an arbitrary assignment and can be changed to any value -- it is a meaningless number until you output the image, at which time it determines how large the pixels will be when printed, and therefore the size of the print.

Message edited by author 2004-11-04 20:28:52.
11/04/2004 08:26:07 PM · #8
Originally posted by dacrazyrn:

The 200 ISO is comparable to 100 ISO for Canon

I would challenge this statement and say that the 20D at ISO 100 trounces the D70 at ISO 200. But that's a different topic.

What I do want to point out, even taking dacrazyrn's statement as true, is that ISO 200 is not equal to ISO 100 in terms of exposure. If I am shooting a moving stream, and want to use a shutter speed of 1 second and meter /5.6 at ISO 100, on a D70 I'd have to use a shutter speed twice as fast (1/2 second) or stop down a full-stop (/8) to get an equivalent exposure at ISO 200, which results in a totally different picture. Either the motion blur effects have been reduced (because of the much faster shutter speed) or the depth of field has increased (because of stopping down).

Message edited by author 2004-11-04 20:30:53.
11/04/2004 08:32:39 PM · #9
Can anyone tell me the differences between a D70 and a D100?
11/04/2004 08:40:20 PM · #10
Isn't it the opposite,Eddy? ISO 200 being more sensitive would allow us to slow the shutter speed and/or open up the aperture to get equivalent exposures, wouldn't it, or am I missing something?

Originally posted by EddyG:

Originally posted by dacrazyrn:

The 200 ISO is comparable to 100 ISO for Canon

I would challenge this statement and say that the 20D at ISO 100 trounces the D70 at ISO 200. But that's a different topic.

What I do want to point out, even taking dacrazyrn's statement as true, is that ISO 200 is not equal to ISO 100 in terms of exposure. If I am shooting a moving stream, and want to use a shutter speed of 1 second and meter /5.6 at ISO 100, on a D70 I'd have to use a shutter speed twice as fast (1/2 second) or stop down a full-stop (/8) to get an equivalent exposure at ISO 200, which results in a totally different picture. Either the motion blur effects have been reduced (because of the much faster shutter speed) or the depth of field has increased (because of stopping down).
11/04/2004 08:42:50 PM · #11
Originally posted by Olyuzi:

Isn't it the opposite,Eddy? ISO 200 being more sensitive would allow us to slow the shutter speed and/or open up the aperture to get equivalent exposures, wouldn't it, or am I missing something?

I'm pretty sure I got it right. At ISO 200, the sensor is more sensitive to light. So you have to let light in for half as much time as you would compared to ISO 100 (shutter speed needs to be twice as fast, as I said) or stop-down a full stop to a smaller aperture to reduce the intensity of the light (which increases the depth of the field, which is also what I said).

Message edited by author 2004-11-04 20:45:17.
11/04/2004 08:42:55 PM · #12
Another factor to bear in mind is the size of the system/camera/lenses. Are you sure you want to carry around something that you may consider bulky? There are other systems to consider besides Nikon or Canon that have less bulk. Photography does exist outside of these systems.
11/04/2004 08:43:09 PM · #13
I love mine. You only live once, Just buy it.
11/04/2004 08:48:06 PM · #14
Originally posted by dartompkins:

Can anyone tell me the differences between a D70 and a D100?


//www.dpreview.com used to have a side-by-side comparison.
11/04/2004 10:08:32 PM · #15
Originally posted by dartompkins:

Can anyone tell me the differences between a D70 and a D100?


The D100 is an end of life product, and the D70 is its replacement which improved on it substantially. For the details, as suggested before, hit dpreview.
11/04/2004 10:25:56 PM · #16
Thanks for the explanation, Eddy. Much appreciated.

Originally posted by EddyG:

Originally posted by Olyuzi:

Isn't it the opposite,Eddy? ISO 200 being more sensitive would allow us to slow the shutter speed and/or open up the aperture to get equivalent exposures, wouldn't it, or am I missing something?

I'm pretty sure I got it right. At ISO 200, the sensor is more sensitive to light. So you have to let light in for half as much time as you would compared to ISO 100 (shutter speed needs to be twice as fast, as I said) or stop-down a full stop to a smaller aperture to reduce the intensity of the light (which increases the depth of the field, which is also what I said).
11/04/2004 11:04:35 PM · #17
Originally posted by cghubbell:

Originally posted by dartompkins:

Can anyone tell me the differences between a D70 and a D100?


The D100 is an end of life product, and the D70 is its replacement which improved on it substantially. For the details, as suggested before, hit dpreview.


Thanks.
11/04/2004 11:19:59 PM · #18
I absolutely love my D70. If i needed to buy another camera today on the same budget i had for it, i'd go with it again.

The only tiny not-even-a-concern i have is high noise at ISO > 640, but i seldom use that anyway.

Yeah, lenses are expensive, so what. Either compromise on quality or just budget that in.

11/04/2004 11:24:14 PM · #19
Originally posted by EddyG:

Originally posted by magicshutter:

Another note, the E-10 is only 144 pixels in resolution as where the D-70 is 300.

I think you are really confused about "resolution".

An image file does not have an inherent "per inch" setting. If your D70 images are being tagged as "300 ppi" and your E-10 images as "144 ppi", that is the camera firmware setting that, but it has absolutely no meaning to the captured images.

"PPI" (pixels per inch) is just a tag that is arbitrarily applied to an image. Let's say you have an image that is 3000 pixels x 2000 pixels. At 100 ppi, that would be a 30" x 20" print. At 200 ppi, it is a 15" x 10" print. At 300 ppi, it is a 10" x 6.67" print. At any of those sizes, the only thing that has changed is the size of each camera pixel on the print. The smaller the pixel, the better and more detailed the print will look.

I'm probably doing a bad job of explaining it, perhaps this link will do a better job.

Just realize that any default "PPI" for an image is an arbitrary assignment and can be changed to any value -- it is a meaningless number until you output the image, at which time it determines how large the pixels will be when printed, and therefore the size of the print.


Thanks. I am reading through this, I think think I may have inadvertantly became brain-to-finger challenged. What I think you're saying and what I'm saying are the same thing, except I have no idea what you are talking about when you say 'firmware' guess I'll need to read up on that. You answered that question though about why one is '300' and one is '144' but I think I understood that one was higher resolution but didn't understand the arbitrary nature of the size in inches. Thanks for the link, it's already clearing up a few misconceptions I had, and will definately make for better prints.
11/05/2004 01:16:13 AM · #20
OK guys and gals, the more I read the more overwhelmed I become.

What lenses will come with the kit? I know you get the 18-70M DX. Do you also get another gimmee lens? If so, what size will it be?

As for my other lens choices. I am addicted to zoom and would like a decent zoom lens. I also would like a macro. I am honestly not going to use a tripod for every shot. My budget is roughly 2000-2200.

WHAT DO I DO?????

You guys have talked about the 24-120 VR as an everyday lens. Prices for some of these are blowing me away. I want to cover all of my needs; however, I still want to send my kid to college some day.

Should I get the kit with the 18-70? What will this lense do for me?
Is this going to be comparable to the 24-120 recommended?

Should I skip that one and go for a nice distance lens instead like the 80-400 recommended?

If another lens comes with the kit, what will it do for me?

What will the 50MM AF do?

HELP!
11/05/2004 02:00:24 AM · #21
Can you define exactly why you need to make the switch to dSLR?

If you like Nikon then there is the new 8800 which is a very nice camera equipped with 35-350 VR lens, and you could always get the wide angle converter if needed.

I'm in the same position, I would really like to move to dSLR, to have access to the manual controls on the lens (hence my love for the Leica D2), there is no substitute for looking through the lens when setting up shots, the bigger sensors are a big attraction.

But, there are many prosumers that have the manual controls on the lens, the EVF is not as nice as TTL but certainly does not stop me getting the pic I want, I've not yet seen any practical reason to need a sensor bigger than 2/3" for the level of photography that I'm doing, and if I were in that position then I would be in need of a full frame sensor and would have to buy again.

So, the only issue that's clearly better is the TTL viewfinder and of course the shutter lag, now are these issues really that restrictive that you need to spend $2000?

Personally I'm still undecided, I've come to the conclusion that there are no prosumers on the market that covers all my wants (the Nikon 8800 and the Minolta A2/200 come the closest), I'm sure that there are going to be a whole load of new cameras hitting the market in the new year so I think I'm going to wait and see.

Darren
11/05/2004 02:14:46 AM · #22
My biggest issue is SHUTTER LAG, SHUTTER LAG, SHUTTER LAG. I want to be able to snap the shot I see, not the aftermath. I have a beautiful, bouncy, active, did I mention beautiful, two-year-old and a huge collection of blurry, half-face, ear, top of head shots to show for it. I never missed a shot with my old 35MM. I know I am capable of taking some excellent shots with the proper equipment.

My second issue is that I want the control in my hands and not in my menu. I am constantly getting my 5700 in some wierd menu setting that I can't seem to undo until I have reset everything in my camera to default values. I want to think about the picture I am taking and stop tripping over unexplained menu controls. The D70 seems to be much more straight forward. I really love the autofocus to manual focus switch as soon as you start to adjust the lens.

As far as lenses go, I have a zoom/macro lens on my old 35mm that I rarely ever switched because it handled just about everything I needed. If I could find a comparable set up for the D70 . . . Wala I think I would be finished. I don't mind spending my 2000 as long as I get what I am looking for.
11/05/2004 02:16:35 AM · #23
Have you given any thought about getting a Canon?
11/05/2004 02:20:41 AM · #24
Originally posted by doctornick:

Have you given any thought about getting a Canon?


I looked at the Cannon 10D today. I am sure its great too, but the Nikon just felt more like the old 35mm and the extra lens 18-70MM package swayed me toward the Nikon as well.

I am not saying I couldn't be talked into a Cannon. Just going by the feel of it.
11/05/2004 02:22:04 AM · #25
Lemme first say that I LOVE my D70! Secondly, the kit only comes with the 18-70. If you want the kit and a basic zoom you can find a 70-300mm nikkor for around $120.00-150.00(USD). Someone mentioned the 50mm Af probaly as an alternitive to the kit lens since you can find one for $100.00(USD) As for macro lenses they are (estimating) $200.00 and up. You will need a tripod for a telephoto zoom lens, as they get pretty heavy (unless you plan on shooting everything at very fast shutter speeds)
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