New D80 or used D200?

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by james_gager, Jan 30, 2009.

  1. I have a "simple" question to ask. I would like to know which is the better choice: a nikon d80 brand new for about $520 or a d200 for about $600 (E+ from Adorama). I am only curious what most people think is the best deal based on price and/or condition. Thanks in advance for your responses.
  2. they have the same sensor. d200 has better build and more features, but you might want to check the actuation count before you purchase. also, getting a nikon warranty may be important to you. in terms of IQ, they will be about the same.
  3. The D200 will give you better weather sealing and a couple more fps. Apart from that they are pretty similar. Decide for yourself, but take into consideration the number of shots taken already by the D200.
  4. Eric is right. I'd also consider the option the D200 offers in that it will allow metering with AI and AIS lenses. This is a pretty nice feature if you have these kinds of lenses. Also the D200 metering is a little better in tricky lighting, it handles highlights a little better than the D80, which tends to blow out highlights more often in my experience. Other than that, the D80 is a nice lightweight digital SLR. The D200 is a more robust semi-professional level digital SLR. But wow, a brand new D80 with a full warranty for $520. That is a great deal.
  5. if you do a search here you will see some testimonials on the erratic metering behaviour of the d80, mostly outdoors. i posted that inquiry here for my friend who wanted a second camera. she opted for a d40 instead. he's very happy with her decision.
    i would get the d200 for the reasons listed by the people above. but there is also the factor of how a camera feels in the hands of the user. these two cameras differ in size.
  6. IMHO size, weight and the ability to meter older AIS lenses should be the points to consider. Two years ago I purchased the D200 because of the ability to meter manual focus lenses.
  7. I had the D70s and upgraded to the D200. The difference was not quite as much as I thought but I certainly do not regret the change. The D200 has much better features and build quality. Also the ability to meter with non AF lenses is wonderful. It is in fact perhaps the main reason for my decision to change. I also like the larger size in my hands. Against this it has much poorer battery life between charges. Not sure how the D80 stacks up, but I think that as someone else says you should also check the number of actuations of the D200. (Mine was 2nd hand but with only around 1000 actuations - virtually new.) If I were you ad I had access to a suitable well cared for, low milage D200 I would find it very hard to resist.
  8. Certainly the D200, no question. You gain metering with old manual lenses, a much more robust build, weather sealing, speed and the possibility to program the center button to immediately zoom to 100%. Shoot, make one button press, and you see if it's critically sharp or not. It's a fantastic camera with a decidedly pro feeling.

    Be sure to go to a shop and take one of each in your hands though. Compare a D90 if there's no D80 with a D200 or D300. Does not matter which, the feeling is the same. Ask yourself if you feel comfortable carrying the weight. That's about the only consideration. Everything else clearly speaks for the D200.
  9. IMHO, there's not a huge difference between the two. How about a used D80 (about $350-400 now) and put the difference towards a better lens.
  10. I owned both and used both extensively. I would recommend the D200. But, if you have $200 more, the D90 may be something for you to consider.
  11. I too had the same question before Thanksgiving, only the prices were $600-650 for a new D80 body and $800-1000 for a used D200 body. I went with the D80 for the warranty. Nothing wrong at all with the D200, I just couldn't justify the extra $ to meter the few AIs lenses that I have. I've been happy with the D80, no problems so far. I'm surprised that dealers still have them new, I thought they all sold out at Christmas. RandyB
  12. Do not buy a d80; as T. Hogan said, it was old before its time. I have used it for about 3 years, and I can tell you that the autofocus leaves much to be desired. I have recently switched to a 300 because I was so disatisfied with it.
  13. I upgraded from D80 to D700. I used my D80 for over two years. The metering on the D80 caused me much pain. No problem at all with the D700. I would consider buying the D90 or D300. Both the D80 and D200 contain old technology. If you buy one of these two, you will wish you had a camera with the new technology. Another, observation on the D80- my Nikon 80-400mm VR lens produced many shots out of focus at 400mm. The same lens works great on the D700. So be prepared to fight metering & focusing issues on the D80.
  14. I have not used a D80. But the matrix metering quality on my D200's (being an old film-&-handheld-spotmeter type of guy :) Is exceptional, for an in camera metering system.
    I have read that the D200 probably has the most consistent metering ( and color rendition for that matter), of the Nikon DSLR's. Having not tried them all of course, i cannot say.
    Some reviews i have read Reid's Reviews (pay site) do say that the metering quality of the D200 is matched by the newer, FF, D700.
  15. I'd get the used D200.. but once you get it you'll want to maybe save a little and get a used D300.
  16. I have the D200 and have enjoyed using it, but now all the new models are out im itching for one of those, the D700. I would hang on and get the D300 or D700 if you could afford to do so, the technology changes so fast.
  17. Only D200 has mirror lock up for tripod shots in the critical shutter zone.
  18. I like my D200. I won´t switch before it is worn down. I am pretty sure the working life of a D200 will be longer than that of a D80. Also, being abe to use AI lenses is a huge bonus.
  19. i recently considered a purchase of a used Fujifilm S5 from Adorama and sent an email inquiring as to the number of shutter actuations. the response i got said they didn't know and i should call and talk to a sales rep. i passed on that one and ended up getting a better deal on the same camera at KEH. anyone selling a used camera capable of maintaining an actuation count should disclose that information in the listing, period.
  20. Does anybody know roughly how many actuations the D200 will manage before being considered worn down?
  21. I just bought a NEW D200 from F11 photo for $750 . I do believe they have 3 more, and would most likely be willing to ship. Its a local shop, so I'm not certain on their policy regarding mail orders, but I do know that they want to get rid of them.
    I haven't gotten to use my D200 much (just bought it on Monday) but I must say that the ergonomics and such are a huge jump from my D50. Not to mention, at $1,000 less than a D300 or $250 less than a D90 I can take that extra $$$$ and invest it in some more glass.
    It is rated for 100,000. But I know a wedding photographer who has over 150,000 on her's and its still working fine (although it is just a backup now).
  22. Thanks for that, mine is at the 5,000 point now so a bit of life in the old dog yet.
  23. You can find a statistics about shutterlife here:
  24. You can find a statistics about shutterlife here :
    Would prefer the D200 also.
  25. I have owned both a D200 and D80 and the superiority of the meter alone of the D200 is enough to steer clear of the D80. Jose Perez (above) says it very well "So be prepared to fight metering & focusing issues on the D80." One of my specialties is Yosemite Wedding Photography and one my signature photos was taken with a D80! - Yosemite Wedding Panorama.jpg To take this picture I had to battle with the D80's meter and compensate -1.3. I almost missed the shot because of this finally decided to get rid of the D80. IMHO don't buy a D80 if you want to enjoy photography and can't afford missed shots.
  26. Even Amazon has new D200s for $799. If unexpected expenses hadn't cropped up, unexpectedly, I might have pulled the trigger. I've got mostly manual lenses, so it matters to me to be able to use them.

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