About to upgrade to the D300 need help

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by landon wright photography, Jun 5, 2008.

  1. I am about to upgrade to the D300 soon. I need another lens as well. I need help deciding if a uber
    tele is a good option. Right now I have a D80 & D200, 12-24mm f4 tokina, 17-55mm 2.8 Nikkor, 80-
    200mm f2.8 nikkor and a 50mm f1.8 nikkor. I have two wish list lenses that I want, the 105 2.8 VR
    macro and any 300 or 400 mm tele, f4 or lower, within reason under 2 grand (I know but hey I can
    wish right?). I am thinking the tele glass is the sacrificial lamb here in the real world. I might be better
    off getting a tele converter for the 80-200.

    So my request is this: I shoot landscapes, candid portraits and close ups, isolation/product shots,
    what pray tell should I get next? I want to do more architecture and fashion. I have 2 SB600's and
    plan on buying a SB800 with my D300. I don't want any studio gear and am set with tripods. If You
    were me and there was a chance of adding a lens to this setup what would it be? Should I just be
    content? Should I squash my inner gear mongering self and not be a good consumer? That is my quandary, my question.

    Oh yeah I forgot to add that I need help on choosing a fuel efficient car, 200 mpg and a presidential
    candidate that will bring us one step closer to utopia.....
  2. I don't see how a 300mm would do much for you with either architecture or fashion. If you shoot sports or wildlife, the Nikon 300mm f4 AFS is an awesome lens. I have the 80-200mm f2.8 2ring and was never excited about the results I got with the 1.4x. (I used the Kenko/Tamron APO since Nikon does not make a TC for that lens.)

    Kent in SD
  3. What do you expect to get out of the D300 that you arne't already getting out of the D200? It sounds to me like you arn't doign lots of critial low light work, or nothign that doesn't benfit from a tripod...

    As for the 300/400 mm lens', i don't see what sort of work you're engaged it could warrant that sort of purchase. For fashion, i would get an 85mm prime for that very shallow DOF and beautiful out of focus renditions, for architecture i would get a tilt shift lens.

    I think you have LBA (addicted to buying new gear), save your money until you know exactly what's keeping you from getting the shot you envision.
  4. Your gear set up looks similar to mine. I shoot the Nikon D2x, Nikon D3 and Nikon D70s. My lenses are the Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8, Tokina 28-70mm f/2.8, Nikkor 70- 200mm f/2.8 and Tokina 300mm f/2.8. With your set up I would look at a 28-70mm f/2.8. It is a great portrait lens. I have use it for portaits and glamour.
  5. You need a long tele like you need a hole in the head. I'd get the micro. That's the one
    thing you need to complete your rig to shoot what you describe that you shoot.
  6. "...candid portraits and close ups, isolation/product shots,..."
    I would get the 85mm f/1.8 - or go all out and get the 85mm f/1.4. The 85 was one of my favorite lenses on our D300 - but it is AMAZING on the D3.
  7. I have a D200 and the exact same lenses, plus a D80. I picked up an 85/1.8 AF-D for the times that I don't want to carry the 80-200/2.8 with the 17-55/2.8. Also, I have a 24/2.8 AF-D, 50/1.8 AF-D, and the mentioned 85/1.8 to use as easy to carry lenses with my D80.

    I'd say definitely the 85/1.8 to slip in your pocket with the 17-55/2.8 mounted on your D200.
  8. Thanks everybody!

    Yes I know the Tele was a stretch but I guess it's hard to kill tele envy. I dabble with
    wildlife here and there but not enough to justify a tele over a mid range prime or macro.

    I live in Brazil and can sell my D80 (here it's 1,550 used body only) and buy a brand
    new D300 (in the USA) with the cash. I could sell my D200 but that would be like
    selling my kid. That's why I am about to upgrade. I am a gear whore and who wouldn't
    pass up trading a D80 for a D300?

    With the D300 I expect to get less noise and better color. I also forgot to mention I
    shoot bands at clubs. The D200 is fine but after iso 1000 I really don't like the results.

    So we have condensed my needs down to this: 85 1.4 - 1.8 or the 105 2.8 vr.

    the 85 will help me more with portraits and the 105 will help me with little critters on

    Looks like I the 85 1.8 or 1.4 would be the most used lens. Ok so between these two
    lenses is the extra stop worth the extra money? I did fall in love with 2.8, I am having
    an affair with my 50 1.8 now would I still have enough love to spread around for a 1.4?

    Ok no one touched the car or candidate advice, what gives?
  9. Landon, when I faced a similar portrait/macro decision (85 vs 105), I preferred the 85mm for portrait but needed the 105mm for macro. I ended up spliting the baby with the Tamron 90mm f/2.8 macro.

    If I were really into portraits more than macro, I would be looking at the 85 f/1.4 but the macro was more important to me. YMMV, of course.
  10. I didn't mention the 85/1.4 AF because it's big honker, but it is the best lens to get at that focal length.

    Here's an example of my earlier rationale: I attended a guitar seminar featuring Laurence Juber (ex Wings guitarist), and I just carried the 17-55 with me, but it turned-out that 55 (82mm) wasn't long enough. I had an 80-200/2.8 at home but didn't bring it because of its bulk and size. If I had an 85/1.8 I surely would have brought it along, in my pocket, and I would have gotten the shots I wanted.

    If size doesn't matter, no brainer, the superb 85/1.4 AF.
  11. i was at the camera store this morning shooting the breeze with the manager when i noticed something new in the display case: nikkor 80-400mm f/2/8 VR... for a long tele, it's the only one i can think of with a pricetag on this side of the stratosphere ($1,579). it's big, but i was surprised how wide, rather than long, it was. i didn't ask 'em to put it on a body, but it didn't appear that it'd be much more cumbersome to use than a 80-200 f/2.8 (yeah, plastic). i mention it mainly to let you know that a long tele is actually available without breaking the bank...
  12. William, I wish it were true but alas, the 80-400VR is not f/2.8. If it were that fast, the price would be $$$$$$$$$.........


    Nevertheless, it is a fun lens. Stop back in the store when you have time and try it out on your camera.
  13. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Regardless of the price tag, a 80-400mm at f2.8 would be a huge lens, and I am not sure that I want to carry that around (even though it were available to me for free). The 200-400mm/f4 is a fairly big lens already.
  14. Back to Landon's questions:

    I got the 85/1.8 because for the extra 1/2 stop the extra cost of the 85/1.4 was just
    not worth it. The 85/1.8 is a really great lens and really sharp, and wide open the
    depth of field is close enough to zero that you won't need the f/1.4.

    About the car: Don't you drive on alcohol already? So why do you need to high
    milage, just setup a distillery in the back yard!

    President: Last president that was supposed to get us closer to utopia was Lula, and
    you know what happened there....
  15. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    If you shoot indoors, the low light, high-ISO ability of the D300 will certainly help. I too would get a 50 or 85mm, f1.8 or 1.4 for that same reason: low light.
  16. Thanks for the info on my last questions, Tachion.

    I just thought that since I was asking a semi broad question about photo gear that I
    should know myself, I might be able to get some bonus info out of this.

    The Ethanol down here is not very popular because of the 30-40% drop in efficiency. It
    is still a government subsidized product so you end up paying for it no matter what.

    Lula; I try to steer clear of talking about brazilian politics being an expat and all. I figure
    I am a guest so why piss off anyone. I would like to see obligatory voting stopped.

    As for everybody else, thank you for the input! I think I am settled on the 85mm f1.8.
  17. You could save some money on the macro lens. You would not need any VR for true macro but you might want it anyway for use as a tele lens. For a macro you get cheap and excellent Tamron 90mm or several Sigma choices up to 180mm. These are optically excellent, both in the true macro range and (at least I know for the Tamron) as tele lens up to infinity.

    For occasional use the older AFD 300mm f4.0 is a nice lens though slightly inferior to the current AFS model by a slim margin. You might consider a manual focus 300mm f2.8 model in case you do not really need AF. My personal opinion is that for many uses of a 300mm MF is fine.

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