Reluctantly looking at DSLRs

Topics covering photography and videography of the flora, fauna and landscape of the Sierra Nevada mountains. Show off your talent. Post your photos and videos here!
User avatar
rscofield
Topix Acquainted
Posts: 32
Joined: Tue Sep 30, 2008 9:29 pm
Experience: Level 3 Backpacker
Location: Yucca Valley, CA

Reluctantly looking at DSLRs

Post by rscofield » Sun Oct 12, 2008 4:13 pm

Hi

My Nikon F3 is getting tired (and heavy) and the 4x5 has always been too heavy for my style of backpacking. I bought a point and shoot digital to take backpacking and reduce pack weight but I am not super happy with it. My base weight is around 13 lbs. I have a ton of Nikkor AI-S lens which I understand should work on Nikon digitals (minus auto focus). Anyone have any experience with this? Any suggestions on a middle of the road DSLR that is both fully functional and lighter weight. I have avoided digital like the plaque so far and know little about it.








User avatar
Windwalker
Founding Member
Posts: 306
Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2005 5:49 pm
Experience: N/A
Location: Porterville, CA
Contact:

Re: Reluctantly looking at DSLRs

Post by Windwalker » Tue Oct 14, 2008 9:49 am

I would suggest taking a couple of your lenses with you to a camera shop.
Check out the various bodies, hold them in your hand, mount a lens or two to the body and try it out.
Most camera shops would be more than happy to let you try things out a bit before you decide.
(something you can't really do with the mass retailers)

I know many photogs who resisted going digital, most say "I don't know why I waited so long".
Enjoy the ride!

User avatar
rscofield
Topix Acquainted
Posts: 32
Joined: Tue Sep 30, 2008 9:29 pm
Experience: Level 3 Backpacker
Location: Yucca Valley, CA

Re: Reluctantly looking at DSLRs

Post by rscofield » Tue Oct 14, 2008 3:19 pm

Thanks good idea! And yes I have very mixed emotions about digital. Something about being old fashioned and traditional :)

User avatar
LMBSGV
Topix Expert
Posts: 747
Joined: Sat Oct 27, 2007 8:42 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer
Location: San Geronimo, CA
Contact:

Re: Reluctantly looking at DSLRs

Post by LMBSGV » Tue Oct 14, 2008 8:36 pm

One other avenue if you are as stuck to traditional film as I am is to look at a used Nikon F series body. They are outrageously cheap these days - an excellent condition F3 or F4 body will go for $200-400. I realize weight is a concern, but compare the weight of your old F3 to a Nikon digital and you'll find they're basically the same. If you want go digital, and want to check lens compatibility, here are a couple of good sources:

http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/compatibility-lens.htm

http://www.nikonians.org/nikon/slr-lens.html

User avatar
copeg
Founding Member & Forums Administrator
Founding Member & Forums Administrator
Posts: 2053
Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2005 9:25 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer
Location: Menlo Park, CA
Contact:

Re: Reluctantly looking at DSLRs

Post by copeg » Thu Oct 16, 2008 11:24 am

Windwalker gives some great advice. Something to remember if/when you do test out a body: make sure you test the full range of f-stops and such. I use Canon and I'm not sure if Nikon is similar, but my older lenses I used for my film body worked fine on the digital body when I test them out. Then the first day 'in the field' I tried stopping down and kept getting an error. Turns out the lenses were too old and needed to be 'rechipped'.

User avatar
Buck Forester
Founding Member
Posts: 452
Joined: Mon Oct 31, 2005 1:38 pm
Experience: N/A
Location: Lincoln, CA (Sacramento area)
Contact:

Re: Reluctantly looking at DSLRs

Post by Buck Forester » Tue Oct 21, 2008 12:44 am

Since I shoot Canon I can't give much advice, other than obviously sticking with Nikon due to your lenses. I don't know the different models of Nikons but I have been hearing some great things about their latest offerings.
It's all about the WILDERNESS!!!

http://www.flickr.com/photos/buckforester/page9/

User avatar
rscofield
Topix Acquainted
Posts: 32
Joined: Tue Sep 30, 2008 9:29 pm
Experience: Level 3 Backpacker
Location: Yucca Valley, CA

Re: Reluctantly looking at DSLRs

Post by rscofield » Tue Oct 21, 2008 3:35 pm

In doing more research, some of the digital Nikons do work with the older lenses but the meter does not couple which is a bummer. Also for the Nikon DX format the angle of view is 1.5 so you get cropping. I'm still looking around but am more decided that this is the way to go.

Russell in Joshua Tree

User avatar
Hikin Mike
Founding Member
Posts: 552
Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2005 5:56 pm
Experience: N/A
Location: Atwater, CA
Contact:

Re: Reluctantly looking at DSLRs

Post by Hikin Mike » Tue Oct 21, 2008 6:37 pm

I'd say most of the DSLR have some type of sensor 'cropping'. Depending what you shoot, cropping can be a good thing, especially for wildlife/birds. I'm shooting with the full-framed Canon 5D, but Nikon has the D700.

User avatar
rscofield
Topix Acquainted
Posts: 32
Joined: Tue Sep 30, 2008 9:29 pm
Experience: Level 3 Backpacker
Location: Yucca Valley, CA

Re: Reluctantly looking at DSLRs

Post by rscofield » Sun Dec 21, 2008 2:46 pm

Well I bit it and got a Nikon D300. I wanted a full frame sensor but there was a huge weight difference plus the idea of my 400 3.5 becoming a 600 3.5 is rather appealing I must admit :-) Anyway thanks for everyone’s advice. It should be here soon.

User avatar
Hikin Mike
Founding Member
Posts: 552
Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2005 5:56 pm
Experience: N/A
Location: Atwater, CA
Contact:

Re: Reluctantly looking at DSLRs

Post by Hikin Mike » Sun Dec 21, 2008 5:05 pm

rscofield wrote:Well I bit it and got a Nikon D300. I wanted a full frame sensor but there was a huge weight difference plus the idea of my 400 3.5 becoming a 600 3.5 is rather appealing I must admit :-) Anyway thanks for everyone’s advice. It should be here soon.
Can't wait to see the pics!

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest