Nikon D 7000 or New Lens

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by buster douglas, Jun 28, 2011.

  1. Hi all I am cerrently using a Nikon D 40 doing general photography and I am thinking about an upgrade to a Nikon D 7000. But I am wondering if I should do the upgrade to the new body or spend the money on a new lens. Where will I see the better quility in my photos with a new body or a new lens. I currently have a Nikon 70-300mm 4.5 5.6 Vr lens which I use the most a Nikon 35mm 1.8G and aNikon 18-55mm3.5 5.6GII kit lens. Thank you very much
  2. How about some great books, or a class, or a trip somewhere fabulous that's beautiful?
  3. Well, what is the lens you would be looking at? Do you print or only view on screen? If you print, how large?
    This is an extremely subjective question and could go either way. I guess the biggest question is, what part of your photos do you find lacking?
  4. I do have prints made 5x7 and 8x10 I only have ever made one bigger than 8x10. Peter are you saying I would waste my money on a Nikon D 7000. Zach that is a great question I feel I am lacking a lot of things I understand that a new camera body or a great lens does not make me a better photographer.
  5. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    If the objective is to achieve better quality in one's photos (this is a general answer that applies to everybody, just merely the OP), the best way to spend your money is to improve yourself as a photographer. That usually means get some books on photography and take some classes. Get your images critiqued; let people tell you how you can improve.
    Another camera or lens is secondary.
    BTW, the OP's attached image is not in focus. The woman's neck and the chain around her neck are very sharp. Her eyes are not.
  6. Thanks Shun I see what you mean So to better your photos you need to better your skills I am understanding a little better now Thanks for youe response.
  7. I guess you would say that for the skills I currently have the D 40 is the better camera now.
  8. What books would you recommend Thanks you for input I really want to get better at this.
  9. William, in addition to the great points already made, try to summarise for yourself what a D7000 would bring your photography, which you cannot do now. Point blank answer, sure a D7000 is a better body than a D40, but whether the specifics in which it is better, are of any use to you is what you need to establish for yourself. If you want a lighter, smaller camera (for example), it would be a lousy choice.
    The very same goes for a lens. It all depends on what you want your lens to do. The 18-55 (example) may not be the best lens ever, for many uses it's perfectly fine. But if you want low light performance, well, it's not the right one for that.
    Peter, in my view, does not say you would waste your money on a D7000 (judging from his other postings, he's not that quick to judge at all), but only saying that upgrading needs to have a purpose. Upgrading for the sake of upgrading is kind of pointless. Make a list for yourself about things where you feel your gear is holding you back, and let's then discuss that list.... If your gear does not hold you back, Peter's advice holds up perfectly well.
    Though.....Every now and then a new toy, is mighty nice ;-)
  10. Thanks Wouter the more feedback I get the better I understand please recommend some books for me I was thinking about buying 1 or 2 of Bryan Peterson's books
  11. Printed at 8 x 10 or smaller, a great photographer can take the same photo with a D40 as a D7000, at base ISO (except in certain situations, like severely low light and action).
    But he'd rather have the D7000... why?
    Good question... do you yet know the answer to that? If you know that there are specific features and benefits of the D7000 that can allow you to do things with your photography that you can't do with the D40 (and there are), then buying one is a great idea (if you have the money). Can you identify these things? If so... get some great books and stuff AND the new camera.
    I'd upgrade the lens too, but in your case, probably the camera first, since you apparently don't shoot with the little plastic 18-55 the most.
    Bottom line is that no camera will take better pictures than the one you already own and know and have in your hand when it happens, but there are compelling reasons, sometimes, to upgrade.
  12. Sounds like you already understand what you need to do to improve the quality of your images.
    You seem to have good lenses now. Go for the body if you have the money and want to spend it, and really, really, really enjoy photography. You will enjoy it more with the D7000.
  13. William, yes, the Bryan Peterson books are, in my view, a very good place to start. Understanding Exposure is a most useful book (if there is a classic advice, it's this book). I also liked Learning to see creatively. Both are well written, clear books that will help you forward.
    One book that helped me a lot is The Photographer's Eye, by Michael Freeman. Somewhat more complicated than the Bryan Peterson books, but for me this book was and is one that really helps me think better before taking a photo. Another (in my view) useful book by the same author is Complete Guide to Light & Lighting in Digital Photography.
  14. Hi
    I definitely agree with the comments about your photographic education. That's where you want to spend your time and at least some money.
    Look at as many photographers websites that you can - a great place to start is the magnum website. Go to exhibitions, get books. Try to figure out what makes a picture speak to you, deconstruct them and then use that knowledge in your own work. I may get shot for saying this, but steal from everywhere that you can, favourite photographers, films etc and you'll eventually come up with your own way. Try ripping off other peoples styles and you will change, adapt and discard as you go.
    When it comes to hardware, I find that it is best to upgrade when I have a specific goal e.g. I am shooting a low light wedding in a couple of months, I'll go get myself a fast lens, or a body that can handle low light comfortably.
    IMHO, if you are wanting to go splash the cash, I'd get glass. A great new lens and then try to pick up a used D700 rather than the D7000. For the money that a D7000 costs, you are not that far off a used 24-70 f2.8 as a quality versatile lens that will last the rest of your life if you look after it.
    Best of luck
  15. I would also look for books that are in the field you are wanting to pursue. If you are wanting to do portraits , find books in that direction. I always go to Amazon and read reviews on books to see if they are what I am looking for. Some can be really hard to follow and reviews will help. They even will have a few pages on some books for you to read to see how it is.
  16. I agree 100% with Wouter's recommendations on books. Pretty much anything by those 2 authors will help you improve. There's tips, pointers, and general information on a wide spectrum of topics around photography. I can pick up any of those books, read a chapter, and have something to go improve.
  17. When I say quality of the photo I don't mean how to compose a photo but the quility that comes from a camera that has a different processor and other things inside the camera like the clarity of the photobut I also think that all the advice I have been given makes for a better quality overall Thanks again for all the help.
  18. When I say quality of the photo I don't mean how to compose a photo but the quility that comes from a camera that has a different processor and other things inside the camera like the clarity of the photo​
    And this is where, in this digital age, we have put the cart before the horse.
    There are some marvelously well-composed and shot photos out there where the difference between noise levels of two sensors or the difference in resolution between 6MP and 16MP wouldn't matter one bit.
    There are few, if any, photos that have bad composition but great technical quality that I've ever liked at all.
  19. Wow Peter I am really suprised to hear that there is not any difference in resolution in a camera that is 6MP and 16MP I was under the impression you would see a great difference that said I guess the men and women selling cameras out there would want you or me in this case to think different Thanks again for you help.
  20. William, my thought (as many others) is learn photography and learn your gear. You don't need another body or another lens. Have you taken your equipment to the max? Probably not, most don't. Study photography, then look at what you need.
  21. William, not exactly what I said... but for well-shot images at base ISO printed 8 x 10 there is indeed no difference between 6 and 16MP.
  22. i think what peter and others are trying to say is that a good photographer with a d40 can produce better pics than a lousy photographer with a d7000. the essence of what makes a good photographer is a) skill in composition and b) the technical know-how of how to render that composition. the camera itself is just a tool to get from A to B. in your case, studying photography, surfing photo websites, reading instructional books and taking classes would probably serve you better than plunking down a wad of cash on new gear.
  23. Thanks Eric I am trying to understand all of this
  24. What they said. William, you have good lenses - the 35mm is excellent, I use it all the time, and the 70-300 also (I use
    the Tamron version all the time, the Nikn and Tamron versions are basically equal). The 18-55 gets no respect but it's
    a good, sharp lens - if what you're trying to do falls within its focal length and f/stop capabilities you should have no
    complaints. The D40 is an older model but unless you want big prints or want to shoot in the dark without a flash
    there's nothing wrong with it. You have enough equipment for a very wide variety of situations - so learning more
    about photography is likely to benefit you more than new equipment. (It's a big subject and there are very few people
    (if any) who have run out of things to learn and can't benefit from books, classes or a lot of practice - I know I'm not
    one of them.)
  25. Thanks Andy, everyone has been very helpful I will get some books and do some reading
  26. The Nikon D7000 is a better camera altogether. Don't let anyone talk you out of getting the D7000. We upgraded to the D7000 from the D90 so much better camera. The D40 is ok for snapshots, buy even with the standard lens from the D90 on the D7000 is difference enough to make the change. Higher Quality altogether. You can crop your pictures to even 1/4 the size and still get great 14 X 20 prints. The D7000 gives you the options of much better photography, and the video is superior to any other camera in its price range.
  27. I have to second Brian
  28. brian, you're confusing the OP. no doubt, the d7000 is a better camera than the d40. but, it matters not if you dont have the skills to get the full measure of performance from it. the d7000 will still be around in six months. in the meantime, the OP could help himself to become a better photographer and make himself worthy of such a camera. when you're just starting out, IMO, it's better to learn on entry-level bodies and fully master their capabilities before upgrading. just my opinion, but the idea that the camera makes the photographer isn't completely accurate.
  29. "Better photography" is accomplished by better photographers. Better cameras allow for certain technical
    improvements, but technical improvements are a single term in the equation.

    I got to borrow a D7000 for a weekend in CA a couple weeks ago. Very nice camera. Better than my D90 in some
    respects. But it didn't lead me to "better photography" - it did help me do better on a couple of indoor shots and a
    couple in fog where I was able to bring up colors that would ot have come out as well (though I shot Reala in my F100
    at the same time and, being honest, it did just as well) but probably 99% of my digital shots would have come out so
    close if I had been using my D90 that I would ot have been able to tell the difference unless I was going to make some
    very large prints and compare them side by side, standing very close. If it were between a D40 and a D7000, that 99%
    by comparison might havebdroppedmto 95% (there was low light shooting involved, but I had that 35/1.8 and my new
    50/1.8 and wasn't pushing the ISO envelope most of the time).

    Now, being able to get those few extra shots is good. But if I owned William's equipment (William already did the right
    thing by buying two good lenses instead of a new body) and were thinking of ways to invest resources to improve my
    photography, education and practice and a trip to somewhere I wanted to shoot would be a higher priority than
    equipment. Heck, when I first came to consider myself a halfway decent photographer I was using a manual focus
    SLR and a 3 MP Nikon E995.
  30. Pretty much anything I would have said has already been said, except for (with all due respect) Brian's comments. Improve your craft before you spend money without a tangible reason to do so. In particular, don't buy into the megapixel propaganda. I have this picture as an 8x10 in my office. Do the math. It's LESS than 1.5 MP. Makes a lovely 8x10.
    Having said that, I have both, and owned a D70s and a D90 previously. Sure the D7000 is better, mostly in it's high ISO capability ( I have a new baby, that's important for sleeping baby pics), near pro build quality, autofocus video (baby stuff again), the ability to use legacy lenses - it meters my old AI and AIS lenses- and a bunch of other improvements that I carefully considered before I dropped the wad on a new camera.
    The D40 has it's own magic too, in particular, a nearly unlimited flash sync when using radio flash triggers - seen here: It's small, light, and easy to use. Even if you DO get the D7000, keep the D40 as your backup. It's one sweet little camera.
  31. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Over and over, I have read arguments on this fourm such as:
    I have seem some excellent images from the Dxyz camera at ISO 3200 with little noise.​
    I have printed to 11x14 with a 3MP image and it looks great.​
    While there may indeed be some excellent images captured at ISO 3200 with this Dxyz camera, it does not at all mean any image captured at ISO 3200 using Dxzy will look great. It also does not mean that any 11x14 image from a 3MP original will look great.
    Noise is mainly the result of underexposure. If you have a low-constrast image with no shadow areas, ISO 3200 can look great. Likewise, if your image has little fine details, 3MP could be all you need to capture most of the information.
    However, there are many many other situations where those settings will not yield good images. In that sense, a higher-end, newer DSLR such as the D7000 with better AF and perhaps currently the best high-ISO results for a Nikon DX-format body is desirable.
    The problem here is that the OP has not identified why his current camera and lenses are limiting his photography. Whenver someone askes whether he/she should get another camera or lens, that is a good indication niether one is necessary. In that case typically one is better off taking some classes and reading some books to get better first. Again, get your images critiqued, and don't be embarrassed by negative comments. All of us have been beginngers once upon a time. If nobody points out to you how you can improve, the chance is that it is much harder for you to do so.
    On the web, there are plenty of photographers who have high-end equipment but beginner technique. At least I don't think it is a good idea to join that rank.

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