Are you staying with dSLR's? No mirrorless?

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by mark_stephan|2, Aug 6, 2019.

  1. I have mirrorless and dslr. All are older models. Will continue to shoot what I got. If I hit the lotto I may upgrade.
  2. Buy what you can/want, I have both, don't see much difference in images.
  3. Well, the sensors are currently (almost) the same, so the image difference is likely to be small (give or take current mild striping from the PDAF and future sensor developments hitting different bodies at different times). The question - as it has been since film days - is whether the camera let you get the shot.

    I vaguely wonder whether Nikon will ever update the 200mm f/4 micro, re-release a 70-180 micro, or update the 105mm with other kinds of VR (like Canon's). Thing is, the best macro option hasn't been made by Nikon for as long as I've been involved with the system - the 105mm was always a bit questionable compared with at least the 90mm Tamron and 100mm Tokina, and the Sigma 105mm/150mm/180mm triumverate are very good. Plus there's the Voigtlander glass. Currently I have a Mitakon 4.5-5x macro (which does something Nikon can't without big bellows), and - mostly because of the triangular aperture on the Mitakon but partly for flexibility - I'm actively looking at the 25mm 2.5-5x Laowa. But the important thing is that they are available for the mount; macro lenses (especially high magnification) are never going to be big sellers, especially in a market where the third party options are so popular (slow apertures and arguably no autofocus makes for a good target for small companies), and I'm quite happy for Nikon to focus on more popular glass.
  4. I think Nikon moved away from making "true Macro" lenses right around the time they opened up the 55mm to f/2.8 and made it an AI-S lens.

    It seems as though Nikon has tended toward making their "Micro" lenses more general purpose lenses than actual macro lenses. Heck, even the ancient compensating aperture 55mm is better in my testing than the subsequent non-compensating in the 1:10 and beyond range, although that's splitting hairs.

    I'll come right out and say that I don't like the 105mm f/2.8 VR. As a general purpose short tele, there are a lot of reasons why it's better than the "D" version of the same focal length. As a practical lens for 1:10 to 1:1, though, I found the D version better so consequently sold the VR.
  5. I agree the 105 VR isn't the best macro lens, it's a general purpose short tele with close-up capability. I use the 200mm micro for shots that are greater than 1:2 and the 85 PC-E typically for shots that I can do with the maximum magnification of 1:2. I think I haven't used the 105 VR for many years now, except last year to try out the focus shift feature. I think this combination of 85 and 200 works very well for my needs. Additionally, I have lenses that I use on a bellows for situations requiring higher magnification or tilt beyond 1:2, but I don't use them in the field all that often because of considerably reduced convenience. It would be great if Nikon put more attention to macro, but it is what it is. Ironically Nikon do make microscope lenses and they have a competition which highlights very impressive photography made using such systems.
  6. I am 76 and am very conscious about weight and size of my camera stuff. I looked at both the z6 and z7 when they were announced and their features do not match the features I need to use on my Nikon FX and DX bodies, d810 and D500. That being said, for travel I will very likely buy a mirrorless pocketable camera like a Sony RX with a 20-200mm equivalent lens because of its small size. Before I do that I will look to see what camera and lens Nikon might have in their mirrorless lineup.

    Another thing to note for nature shooters is that with the new PF lenses now 300mm and 500mm, a well featured DX body like the D500 and these lenses results in a system that is less in weight and size than FX lenses in the same focal length.

    If mirrorless completely solves the need to AF fine tune lenses, and if buffer sizes increase, etc, maybe a switch to mirrorless will make sense. Then you just have to find the money to make it happen.
  7. I have a D800 and a Fuji kit. My wife loves the D800 with the 24-70, and it does produce excellent results. But for daily use and travel, the Fuji wins. The XPro2 sensor is APSC but it’s as good as is needed for anything but extreme high ISO situations. The lenses really are smaller and better than most SLR lenses. The focus is dead on perfect with the on-sensor AF points. Having small f/1.4 lenses compensates for the smaller frame. And a small Timbuk2 bag with a padded insert fits 2 bodies and 3 lenses and a week’s worth of batteries.

    I’m seeing a lot of full frame mirrorless cameras with enormous heavy expensive lenses and I guess that’s what the manufacturers think the market calls for. We’ll see if they’re right, but personally I’m not interested.
    Landrum Kelly and Jochen like this.
  8. Because my DSLR kit is a pain in the back, I was considering a Lumix or M4/3 camera to lighten the load. When Nikon announced the 14-30/4, I decided to try a Z6 with kit lens and the 14-30, and I have been using the new gear as my primary camera for 4 months. Nice kit, but I won't sell off the D800x just yet. The Z's EVF is the best I have used but frustrating when shooting fast action. At a recent event, I used the D800x with a 70-200 and the Z6 with the kit zoom. Most of the time, the 70-200 was the best lens but when the subject came closer, switching to the Z6 always resulted in a second delay refreshing the EVF as the camera woke up (I kept Z6 powered on with the lens in shooting position). Once the Z6 was ready to go, it performed well but EVF startup delay when switching cameras caused lost shots. I also experienced the "slide show" effect with rapid shutter actuation.

    Some positives. The Z is great using AIS lenses with focus peaking. I'm at the toe of the learning curve for video but the Z's video and time lapse ease of use are superior to the DSLR. The Z6's low light performance is excellent and I have pulled up shadow detail that would need HDR bracketing with the D800x. My copy of the 14-30 is an excellent lens and except for vignetting, matches the performance of my other WA zooms (14-24, and 16-35). Overall, I'm pleased I bought the Z6 kit which is half the weight and bulk of the equivalent DSLR kit. Fits easily in my day hike backpack and my back thanks me. Perfect for travel, hiking, and day to day use.
    yardkat likes this.
  9. Well, my 105/2.8 AFS Micro needs a bunch of fine tune on any DSLR I have tried, but initial testing on the Z6 inidcated pretty good accuracy without compensation. I was surprised by this.

    I don't have statistics to back it up, but I think my Z6 seems to hit accurate AF where I want it with less effort on my part better than my D810, at least for general and people photography. Not sure how it would fare against AF in the D850/D5/D500.

    I did try shooting an adult kickball game with the Z6 and my Gen 1 300/2.8AFS Tuesday evening. I am going to have to study menu settings and change a bunch of stuff. The way I had the Z6 configured, getting the AF system started and locked on my intended subject was more difficult than with a D810 and AFC-D9. Once locked, the Z6 did seem able to track an adult running at me.

    I have the impression that the Z6 AF system was very good at nailing the focus on the face/eyes of the moving players, at f/3.2 on the 300mm, once I got AF started and locked. The other take away from the results is that the Z6 SOOC JPGs at ISOs above 5000 probably favor keeping detail and leaving some noise in dark areas. I liked the results. Also to note is that color rendering was very good under mixed mostly poor artificial lighting at 8:20PM.

    I will try the Z6 for sports again with different settings for AF and more delay before battery saving begins. But for now, I am thinking that an optical finder is still better for sports.

    I am not much of a close up shooter, but the non compensating 55/3.5 I have works very well on the Z6.
  10. I think my issue with the 105mm VR was that it seemed to have quite visible LoCA (my favourite aberration). Wide open, so does the (old) 90mm Tamron, although it cleans up quite well; the 100mm Tokina is apparently a bit better, and the new (VC) 90mm Tamron is too - but so is the 150mm Sigma macro, which is what I ended up getting to avoid the problem. I've not really heard anyone say the Nikkor isn't sharp (other than someone apologising for testing it at a normal shooting distance - I've possibly seen horizon softness from the 150mm Sigma, too), just that it's not particularly any better than the options it's twice as expensive as. Although it's a bit less than twice now the VC version of the Tamron is out, and the longer Sigma has a reason to cost more.

    There's a place for "copy stand" (flat field) lenses like the 40mm and 60mm micro lenses, but I'd mostly rather have working distance, hence the disappointment that the 200mm f/4 (which admittedly doesn't really have anything wrong with it) hasn't been updated. Fortunately the 300mm f/4 isn't too bad down to moderate magnification; nor is the 70-200 FL. I wonder whether the FTZ might force Nikon to get on with a 200mm f/4 and 135mm prime replacement, though.
  11. Although the Z6's IBIS won't help for subject motion, how does the 300mm 2.8 AFS behave regarding camera shake reduction?
  12. I have tried this using a Nikon 300/4 AFS on a Sony A7Rii. Assuming the Z7 is comparable to a Sony A7xxx, in-body stabilization can be used with a non-IS 300 mm lens, hand held down to 1/30 second, only if you rest the lens on something solid. Unsupported at the nominal minimum speed of 1/300, you will see doubling in a 45 MP image. Higher shutter speeds don't necessarily help, because the IS takes a little time to react to camera motion, adding its own version of camera shake. It's a lot better than nothing, but a tripod will give better results.
  13. LOL, my Gen 1 300/2.8 AFS has its own version of VR...It is so heavy that it can't shake much. F=MA stuff. I always use it on a monopod to save my back and arms!

    The lens is super sharp and renders very well, especially for people. It almost has too much saturated colors.

    I had not given much thought to the Z6 IBIS while shooting the kickball game, but it probably contributed to the very detailed looking photos I got at the game. This photo is at 1/640, getting the shutter speed at around 1/1000 or higher helps, also. I changed to 1/1250 later. The lens works well at f/2.8, but using 3.2 gets a little extra DOF so that more of a person is in focus.
    DSC_0988 sfs.JPG
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  14. IBIS is GREAT.
    I put a 500mm mirror on my Olympus, press the shutter to activate IBIS and . . . WOW :D
    The shaking is still there, but MUCH reduced, to the point that I feel comfortable hand holding it.
    This setup is 20x magnification, like a 1000mm lens on a FF camera.
    It is still going to require good technique, but it pushes the limits out.
  15. :) I found the same when I first tried a 135mm DC. I sometimes wonder whether my 200/2 actually has VR, or is just labelled as such. (I guess there should be an FL version in planning by now; my mk1 is about 3/4 of the weight of a 400mm FL.)

    Well, a bit. The D850 has almost exactly the same pixel density as my old micro 4/3 GF2 (admittedly, only a 12MP body). I get worried about people using focal length equivalence to calculate reach. You'd get about the reach from a 20MP Micro 4/3 body (say the latest catchy OM-D E-M1X) with a 500mm lens as from a D5 with a 1000mm (or 800mm + 1.25xTC). Which isn't to say that IBIS isn't useful or that micro 4/3 isn't useful, or that "equivalence" isn't a thing, it's just that I've seen too many 16MP bodies with "3000mm" zoom lenses, when you capture more detail with a "2400mm" 800mm + TC20 on a D7200 (and remembering this). Not all pixels are equivalent either, but they count if we're talking reach.

    Come winter I must find time to try my 1200mm (or 10", measured the other way) Dobsonian with my D850. For short exposures, obviously. I didn't do all that well trying to get Saturn with a 200-500 and a TC14 last time; I'm not going to let P1000 owners have all the fun, just because they can take the shot in less than half an hour...
  16. Any chance you sell your GF2 cheap?
  17. I prefer magnification ratio based on the normal lens.
    To me, magnification is less confusing than equivalent FL.

    Agree on the glass making a difference.
    I put a Nikon 70-200 on my D7200 and while I was expecting it, I was still amazed at how much more IQ I got out of the camera, at the same FL. I don't need a FF/FX camera, I need better lenses to make the most out of what I have.

    I have yet to try shooting the sky with my wife's reflector. I've been thinking about it for a LONG time, just never got beyond the thinking part.
    Not as big as your Dob. I "think" it has a 5 inch mirror.
    City has bad light pollution for sky shooting. Then my wife lost interest in astronomy, in favor of needlepoint stitching.
  18. Do Nikon 'allow' the 500mm PF on the J5 mirrorless?
  19. You can attach your camera to an astronomical telescope very cheaply and easily. For a 5" reflector, you probably have a 1-1/4" eyepiece tube. No eyepiece or lens is used, just the main telescope tube, at whatever the focal length and aperture it has. The following are well-made and all metal. This is my setup for Nikon, Canon and Sony (different T adapters).

    Celestron SLR (35mm OR Digital) Camera Adapter for All Refractor and Reflector Telescopes which Accept 1.25" Eyepieces - Requires Camera-Specific T-Mount Adapter
    Vixen Optics T-Mount SLR Camera Adapter for Nikon F-Mount Cameras
  20. Don't think so. J5 uses Nikon N1 lenses. Will need lens mount adapter such as the FT-1 mount adapter.

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