So I got a "new" Nikon D700

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by richsimmons, May 2, 2016.

  1. No regrets, but some people have asked, "Why would you do that?"
    It certainly wasn't my intention.
    I wanted to have a backup body for my D7100, was thinking of getting another one and set it up the same way, looked at the D600 which is basically the same as the D7100 with a full frame sensor and same control layout. D800 was out of my budget, but I saw the D700, which has a D3 sensor, auto focus and 12 really good megapixels. Plus I have a couple of full frame lenses I'm using with the D7100. The 70-200mm f/2.8 VR1 and a Sigma 70mm f/2.8 macro. I also bought a 50mm f/1.8D on the cheap. Best part, the camera had a shutter count of 8800. Like brand new.
    I didn't think shooting full frame again (haven't since film) would be such a difference, but it really is. Especially now that I'm getting older and the eyes are starting to strain. The colors straight out the camera are amazing. Heavy piece of equipment, especially with the battery grip and 70-200mm on it. File sizes are manageable, but I keep in mind that my framing should be better because I don't want to crop so much as I would with the 24mp D7100. I think it'll be a great portrait camera. Focus is quick, startup time is almost non existent. It's a sweet piece of tech.
    So the question is, do I add a 24-70mm f/2.8 or maybe the 24-120mm f/4 for general photos? Maybe a prime for portraits, like an 85, 135 or a 200mm?
    Someone get the Pepto, I think I got G.A.S.
  2. Sandy Vongries

    Sandy Vongries Administrator Staff Member

    There are some really good deals on the 24-85, which is very good. You can't go wrong with the 24-120. Both are excellent and give a lot of flexibility.
  3. Just got back from a walk-around with my D700 and an old 35mm Nikkor-OC that I just AI'd. Really is a wonderful camera, and the colors are really nice.
    I mainly use it as a back up for my D4 for work. And I have always liked the original 24-70G f2.8 lens with it (have not tried the new 24-70E).
    You're right, the 12MP is a bit scant these days, and you do need to avoid heavy coping, but it's still a very usable camera, and a lot of fun.
  4. If you just want a walkaround zoom for convenience, 28-105 AF-D is a good option on D700. It costs almost nothing.
  5. Good deal on a great camera but I wouldn't call 8K clicks new. I just bought a D7000 refurbished by Nikon. Came with a shutter count of 37. That's "new"! :)
    I really like the AF-D 28-105mm lens on my D800. Holds up well, even at 36mp.
  6. @Patrick: 37? That's great. But 8800 clicks is only about 6% of the life cycle, so that's still pretty new to me.
    Thanks for the suggestion on the 28-105 and the 24-85. I'll look into those.
  7. I just bought a D7000 refurbished by Nikon. Came with a shutter count of 37. That's "new"! :)
    most likely, they reset the shutter count post-refurb.
  8. Considered that, thought I'd leave it alone.
  9. most likely, they reset the shutter count post-refurb.​
    Maybe. If I hadn't just got one with 12K I'd say that was likely. I returned that unit b/c it was splattering the sensor with oil. The replacement came on Friday. That said, since the fix for the oil on sensor is a new mirror box assembly, mine may be one that was fixed, the first one, had not yet been fixed.
  10. Well done! Another +1 for 28-105 for general purpose on d700.
  11. And BTW, what about a portrait lens?
  12. The 24/70 weighs a ton, Think about that, 24/120 is a dream.
  13. If the 24-70 weights a ton, the 24-120/4 is 3/4 of a ton... :D
    The "new" 24-85VR and the 28-105 are close to half the weight of a 24-70. The "old" 24-85AFS is even lighter.
  14. The 28-105 is a "sleeper" lens. And if (lack of) distortion is important to you, well worth checking out.
    The lens hood is the worst feature - it looks like Fidos food bowl..
  15. And the 28-105 has a close focus option.
  16. Thanks. I went with the 28-105 and yeah, that hood is funky! I should have it in my hand tomorrow.
    Thanks again.
  17. Rich, I don't bother with the hood, my hand makes a far more effective shade when required. The hood turns the combo into a bulky affair whereas part of the joy of the lens is its compactness. It all balances out very nicely with the grip too. Have fun!
  18. The D700 is a workhorse, and regardless of what the megapixel counters say, 12.3 MP is plenty sufficient for most work, including magazine publication. Been there, done that.
  19. I use the 28-105 also on my D800. It's a nifty lens that I keep on the camera for weekend excursions. You're right about the hood. I replaced mine with the HN-23 which came with my 85mm f1.8D. It works fine with no vignetting.
  20. Congratulations on your new toy, Rich. I had a D700 for several years (my first Nikon body). I think I found the metering more consistent than my D800 and D810, and the AF more prone to hitting - possibly because the reduced resolution was less prone to showing up sharpness issues. For the same reason, I shot a lot more at wide apertures than I do these days, because it was harder to see when the lens wasn't keeping up. The ISO button is in an awkward place on the D700, but I prefer the meter mode and AF mode selection to later cameras (where you can't get at them right-handed). The live view is a little iffy, but actually it's what I was waiting for when switching from Canon - I shoot a little tilt-shift, and having live view of any sort is very helpful; Canon's 5D2 took so long to turn up that I'd jumped ship. No regrets, FWIW (although I might have some if I was a heavy 200-400 f/4 shooter!)

    > 12 really good megapixels

    I would slightly take issue with that statement. I kept my D700 as backup when I got a D800, and it's true that at the same ISO, the D700 pixels might behave slightly better (since they're 1/3 the area) - though over the whole image, the D800 has the best part of a stop improvement over the D700. The D700 does have a really strong low-pass filter, too, so even at the pixel level you don't get the sharpness that a D800e or D810 will give you - and likely also the recent DX bodies (if your lens keeps up). The real kicker for me was the base dynamic range difference - with a D700, I let ISO float from 200 to about 1600 without worry. Even though the D8x0 series is better at the same ISO, I try much harder to keep it at base ISO because I know there's dynamic range to recover in post. But Canon shooters have been dealing with this for long enough, so it's obviously not the worst problem in the world - it's just that, since the D7000, technology has made some improvements.

    The 24-120 f/4 is bigger than I expected; I have one, but my Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC is barely bigger and gets more use. I'd steer clear of the variable aperture 24-120 - it's optically poor even on the D700. If you're after a "street sweeper", I used a 28-200 f/3.5-5.6 G as a body cap when I didn't know what else I wanted. It doesn't remotely keep up with a modern body, but on a D700, preferably down a stop or so (and with something like DxO cleaning it up), it's good enough that the flexibility is welcome, and it's small and light enough to leave on the body just in case. The 28-80 f/3.3-5.6 is even smaller and lighter. I'm sure more modern zooms are better - I try to steer clear of the "not really cheap but not really premium" part of the market, since I feel worse about iffy optics if I've spent more money getting them, but YMMV.

    Portrait wise, the 85mm Samyang is decent if you cant stand manual focus, and their 135mm is allegedly even better; I've also used a 135mm f/2.8 AI with some success (for a while I carried my D700 with 28-200 in a toploader, with a 50mm f/1.8 AF-D and 135mm f/2.8 AI in the front pocket). The 85mm f/1.8 AF-S is decent if you want AF, but it has quite strong LoCA, so watch out for your backgrounds going green; the newest 85mm Sigma is supposedly in a different class if you can face the cost. The 105mm Nikkor f/1.4 and 135mm Sigma f/1.4 Art lenses are both extremely well regarded, but cost. Others swear by their 105mm and 135mm f/2 DC Nikkors; I mostly swore at my 135 f/2 DC (focus inaccuracy, softness, but mostly really extreme LoCA), so YMMV there.

    Hope that helps. Enjoy your NAS!

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