upgrade from D50 for shooting wildflower macros

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by reny, Mar 10, 2011.

  1. Hello,
    Since 2006 I've been shooting with a D50 and micro nikkor 60 and micro 105mm's for my wildflower photography. I love this camera but my method of shooting/lenses gives me a very small depth of field. What I need, however, is to be able to see that depth of field while shooting so I can really focus on the one point that I want to be central in the flower. I always shoot and focus manually.
    I do NOT care about lots of bells and whistles, and the simpler the camera the better. Some of the new cameras have larger than 2" lcd and brighter/more magnification viewfinders which would be a big plus. I've been researching the D70, 80, and 90 - really don't want to go much over $1,000. Just want to make sure I'm not missing another Nikon option and get the best/simplest camera for my use. Suggestions?
     
  2. I'd go for a refurb D90. You'll have a good 12MP sensor, DOF preview, live view focusing for extreme precision and video too!
     
  3. D90 is a GREAT upgrade from D50. That's what I did. very happy.
    Today I'd try REALLY hard to afford the D7000, though...
     
  4. Get a D7000 instead of the D90.
     
  5. jReny: Your Nikon D50 has no depth of field preview button on it? You are right, I think, about not needing the bells, whistles, and (buttons) ... I have a D80 and the 105 and use the DOF button all the time to check ... since you are probably on a t-pod, it is no hassle to activate, although image in finder is darker.
     
  6. Thanks for your quick responses! So, D90 is sounding interesting. I'm not sure that I'd gain much of value to me with the D7000 for the additional price. More pixels aren't a big concern, and videos are not of interest.
    Bruce, how do you find the D80 in terms of really being able to preview what you are shooting in terms of dof. No, the D50 doesn't have a dof preview button.
     
  7. I use the D90 for macro and imho it is great. The larger view screen is great and the live view is great for zooming in and finesse focusing. However, the DOF does not work in Liveview. In bright sunlight of course, the screen is hard to view, but is way better than the D70s I used. If under $1000.00 is your goal, this is the camera. I'm sure the D7k would be even better, but that would put you over budget. One must stay within budget nowadays. ;)
     
  8. JReny:The DOF button on the D80 works fine with me in that a)always on t-pod for stuff like this, and b) always plenty of light and, c)can check LCD after a test shot. That said, low light? ... not so good, but can still use LCD to check the shot and (or) recompose. I guess I can say that I am lucky and money is not an issue with me at all, but FULLY agree with other poster about budgets and would add that I like to squeeze EVERYTHING out of a piece of equipment I can, and learn in the process before I 'upgrade'. That said, I have 'new photo equipment' on my homepage, and check it before ANYTHING ELSE, each day. Good luck with your choice!
     
  9. I thought I'd love the DoF button on my D90 after not having it on my D50.
    But I almost never use it.
     
  10. There have been no optical viewfinder in which you can "really" monitor the DOF since Nikon F4. The finder screens have gone for the brightness by sacrificing accurate DOF control. Other brands have gone the same way. I had never tried to make sure of DOF in the optical viewfinder since I had bought F90 (not D90!).
    The only way to control DOF is the live view with the lens stopped down. I'm not sure which Nikon model provides this function, but current Panasonic models I've used offer this function. If your subject is relatively still, the surest way is to make a test shot.
    By the way, if your main subjects are closeups of wild flowers, I would strongly recommend a camera with an articulating LCD with live view. D5000 is the only Nikon DSLR that offers this function. An articulating LCD a truly liberating feature in terms of the camera angle, which totally changes the way of picture taking, especially in this area of photography. D5000 is discontinued shortly but should still be easy to find new. Or mayby you can wait for a follower model.
     
  11. Okay, it seems D90 will be the way to go. D90 users, does the image sensor cleaning work as is or do I need capture nx 2 software required. This is what the dpreview.com/reviews/nikond90 specs say. Because wildflowers are my subject and I like soft focus I have my image presets set to "softer" on my D50. I see that's not available on the D90, can one set up a custom "softer" and is it easy?
    Thanks to all for their comments.
     
  12. jReny NEVER soften in-camera if it's available. Do it in post.
    I've had no problems with dust in my D90, but I only ever had to blow dust out of my D50 twice, never needed a wet cleaning at all. Just make sure you know what you're doing before you do it.
    I've had my D90 about a year, and I have not yet had to blow dust out at all.
     
  13. I'm with Peter. I never soften in camera. I have a hard enough time getting it as sharp as possible let alone starting out soft. You can tweak the settings in "set picture control". It gives you a chance to tweak sharpening, contrast, brightness, etc.
    I've never had a problem with dust bunnies. My old D70s was a dust bunny magnet. The sensor cleaner works great.
     
  14. Okay, Amazon just got my money and it came in under $1,000 for a new D90 with 18-105 lens, better than the current "kit" lens I have so sprang for it. Can't wait to see how my 60 and 105 macro lenses work with it and test out the dof preview. Thanks for your help.
     
  15. You'll be very pleased I'm sure.
     
  16. jReny, you'll be very pleased with the D90 and the 18-105. A true classic digital Nikon and a very good lens.
     
  17. isa

    isa

    D90 -
     
  18. Good choice and good luck with it.
     

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