Would you buy a D2x today?

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by canonfduser, Dec 25, 2009.

  1. My local camera store took in several D2 bodies in the past couple of weeks on consignment being sold by a professional nature photograher who recently upgraded to a D3s and I'm wondering if you'd buy one today if the price were right? I've looked over 2 D2x's, a D2XS and a D2Hs. I already have a D2H so no need for a D2Hs. My main DX body though is a D1x and my FX body is a D700 and I've been yearning for a 12mp DX body. One of the D2s's I looked at had 96000+ shutter actuations according to Opanda and it's the least expensive at $850. The body is in BGN condition according KEH's grading scale based on my past experience with them with no peeling rubber and it was serviced by NPS 2.5 years ago. The other bodies are more than the cost of a new D300 so I'm not considering any of them. Before I consider taking the plunge I thought I'd ask for your opinions.
     
  2. Absolutely no way unless the build quality was more important than the image quality (unlikely but possible). A D300 outclasses it by some margin in almost all ways.
    Or unless it was really pretty cheap...
     
  3. Actually if you shoot primarily at ISO 100 like I do the D2X outclasses the D300 models. The price is about right if you meant that it is a D2X. D2X has a better viewfinder especially if you wear glasses. Generally if you buy a D300 series you would have to add the MB-10. The D2Xs has always been way over priced for the minor improvements over the D2X. The D2X is the last Nikon body to readily accept the TC-16A which can be useful to manual lens fanatics.
     
  4. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Mark, ever since I bought my D300 2 years ago, I have hardly ever used my D2X any more, although I still own it. In some recent international trip, I brought 3 bodies (D700, D300S and D300) but didn't even bother to bring the D2X as a backup body. Now that the D300S is out, if you want a DX-format body, just get the D300S.
    The D300S totally outclasses the D2X is so many ways that it is a no brainer. In particular, since you already have a D700, they can share the same MB-D10 grip and the same batteries. It makes your life much simplier.
     
  5. I've got both the D2X and D300 and the D2X has been relegated to backup status, and I mean ONLY backup status. I feel like Shun does, the D300 outclasses the D2X in all areas except for pounding nails.
     
  6. If it were inexpensive, yes, I would. But as Shun pointed out, the D300s has better compatibility with batteries and grips. If the extra money for the D300s is not that much, then get that. You also get a warranty.
    EDIT: No, forget it, not if it's in BGN condition.
     
  7. It depends on your shooting. I have 2 D2-series cameras slated only for remotes.
    If you're shooting at low- and base-ISO's, you'll be just find.
    I'm a working pro and prefer the full build quality, but the D300 is a pretty darn good camera too.
     
  8. No, the D300 is smaller and has a better feature set and image quality. I don't want to lug around a second-best camera like the D2X.
     
  9. Like some of the others it would depend on what you where using it for..... I shoot a huge amount of day light motor sports so for me I prefer the DX D2x over my D3, the larger battery over the D300 and the extra cropping feature in great for sports as well.
    I will buy another (maybe 2) if I can find them gently used for $1000 or less, very specific needs for day to day shooting it would be a new camera and 99.9% sure it would be full frame
    regardless if it works for you vs. the new stuff I do get a kick out of how "outdated" people think they are no, Honestly how many of use could say we got 100% out of our D2x's? (My guess only people without posted images make a claim like that :) )
     
  10. I could understand considering a used D300 (with MB-D10) over a used D2X if both were similar in price. However calling the D300s a no-brainer is going a little far. For daylight sports I'd rather have two well used D2X bodies for the price of one D300s with MB-D10. That way I could switch between the body with a 200/2 mounted and the body with the 400/2.8 mounted.
    Adding another D2X and TC-16A to my existing ones is something I am considering before the jump in a few years to a used D3X or newer consumer D3X-sensor body.
     
  11. I'm on board with John and Raymond. A lot of professional sports photogs (yes, I'm speaking from experience as a full-time PJ who shoots sports), prefer the full body, pro feel of the D2- or D3-series over the Dxx-series. A lot of them (us) shoot in RAW with max ISO's during the day of 400-800, so the camera is just fine.
    Motorsports, bike sports, racing, etc. I prefer a hardcore body and I don't have that feel with the D300, which I do own. But if I'm shooting basketball in a poorly lit gym or night football (I shot the Raiders with a D300/300 f2.8), I'll grab the D300/D700.
    It really depends on the situation at hand. I see D2X's go for $750 some places and if all you're shooting is daytime sports, it's a helluva bargain. I'd invest in better glass.

    A lot of amateurs don't get this. There are lots of pro newspaper guys who shoot with D2-series cameras or Canon 1D Mk. II-series cameras. It does happen.
     
  12. No. The inexpensive D90 has a superior sensor.
     
  13. I'm still shooting a D1x, and I have not found a Dxx camera that will focus as quickly or acurately. I have only played around a little with the D300 - are others of you out there finding that it will out perform the D2x (or D1x for that matter) in focus speed & accuracy?
     
  14. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Apparently some of you are not aware that the D2X/D2Xs is not quite suitable for sports photography, at least not any more.
    One major difference between the D2X and the D300 is that the D300 is UDMA compatible, as all higher-end Nikon DSLRs from 2007 on are. Memory write speed on the D300 is much much faster on UDMA CF cards (e.g. SanDisk Extreme 4 and Lexar 300x) and even non UDMA cards such as the SanDisk Extreme 3. Additionally, those same DSLRs introduced after 2007 have lossless compressed RAW so that you can get smaller RAW files without losing any quality. The D2X only has uncompressed RAW or lossy compressed RAW.
    When I tested the D300 for photo.net two years ago, I compared the CF card write speeds between the D2X and D300. On the Extreme 3, it takes the D2X about 4, 5 seconds to write one NEF file but it only takes the D300 about 1.5 seconds. With Extreme 4 cards, the D300 only takes about 1 second. As a result, the D300 can empty its memory buffer much much faster. Now having used the D300 for 2 years (plus the D3, D700 and D300S), I have never filled up the buffer even once so that I had to stop shooting to wait for the buffer to clear, which was a problem I used to run into with the D2X once in a while even at a slower frame rate. Needless to say, when there is action and you cannot shoot because your camera's memory is full and you need to wait for the memory buffer to clear at 4 to 5 seconds per frame, it is a very frustrating experience.
    Additionally, the D2X maxes out at 5 frames/second (I consider its high-speed crop mode completely useless) while the D300 is 6 and the D300S is 7, and the D300/D300S can go up to 8 with the MB-D10 grip and right batteries. The ability to go up to 8/9 frames per second as the D3 and D300 can is also critical for action photography.
    Up to 2007, sports photography used to be dominated by Canon as Nikon's technology at the time, including the D2X/D2Xs and the 4MP D2H/D2Hs, was lagging far behind. However, the introducion of the D3 and D300 in 2007 turned things around for Nikon very quickly. By the 2008 Beijing Olympics, we saw almost equal shares of Canon (with the big white lenses) and Nikon users among sports photographers. Among Nikon bodies, it is very easy to tell whether someone is using a D2 family camera or a D3 family. All D2's have a very distinct white dot on top of the viewfinder; that is actually a little window for light to enter the viewfinder for auto white balancing evaluation. The D3 and D300, of course, have improved auto white balancing and do not have that white dot (tiny window) any more. Now that the Winter Olympics is just 1+ month away, you'll get another opportunity to see what the pros are using.
    Needless to say, digital technologies have improved drastically in the last decade. We have come a long long way since the original D1 from 1999. The D2X was announced in the fall of 2004. It was the first DSLR that convinced me to stop using 35mm film and was my primary camera for 2+ years. However, now 5 years later, the technologies inside the D2X is way behind. Today, even the D3 and D300 themselves have been replaced by improved S models and you can get a used D300 for around $1000, there is even less room for the D2X in the used market.
     
  15. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    I'm still shooting a D1x, and I have not found a Dxx camera that will focus as quickly or acurately. I have only played around a little with the D300 - are others of you out there finding that it will out perform the D2x (or D1x for that matter) in focus speed & accuracy?​
    Sammy, I have never owned any D1 family DSLR, but all D1's use the same Multi-CAM 1300 AF module with only 5 AF points as the F5 and F100. That is even older technology.
    For shooting sports, the D2X's Multi-CAM 2000 is actually quite good. While I shoot surfing, which is not that demanding on the AF system, I can get about 90% in-focus shots. The D3/D300's Multi-CAM 3500 is even better and I can get very close to 100% in focus. However, the D2X does have one advantage: its 9 cross-type AF points (out of 11 total) are spreaded out across the frame while the D300's Multi-CAM 3500's 15 cross-type AF points (out of 51 total) are concentrated in the center of the frame.
    Therefore, while the 51 AF points on the D3/D300 give you superior AF results for sports, for most stationary subjects, the D2X having its 9 cross-type AF points spreaded around is better. That is one issue I have pointed out over and over in all of my FX-format DSLR reviews for photo.net. Hopefully Nikon will imporve it when they roll out the D4 in the future.
     
  16. Simple answer - no. $850 for a bargain condition sample with 96k actuations - definitely not my idea of "right price" - not even if it was selling for half as much.
     
  17. No way. I would take a clean used D200 over a D2x. Not to mention the more modern offerings discussed above.
     
  18. Honestly how many of use could say we got 100% out of our D2x's? (My guess only people without posted images make a claim like that :) )​
    I have never read that anyone is making such a claim about this camera or any camera. For the life of me I do not see what posting images has to do with it. However I do think people purchase newer camera's based on specific features such as higher ISO. My personal vote is thumbs down on the beater D2x.
     
  19. "I have never read that anyone is making such a claim about this camera or any camera. For the life of me I do not see what posting images has to do with it. However I do think people purchase newer camera's based on specific features such as higher ISO. My personal vote is thumbs down on the beater D2x."


    Links in a chain... 99.5% of the work I see the photog is the weak link. How does a camera that is say 25% better make a difference when you are not even getting near max quality out of the one they already own?
    My point about not posting images is pretty simple, the more opinionated, gear obsessed, "all knowing" the poster is the less likely they are to show images... if they claim to be so good that they get 100% out of there camera every time they pick it up I am willing to bet they do not care to share those perfect portfolios.
    I agree the D2x the OP mentioned is overpriced but some of the claims of how outdated it is are just ridiculous, I think many of you feel you need latest and greatest without really thinking it through.
     
  20. I know I'm on the low-end of argument here, but a colleague of mine who is one of the track photogs at Laguna Seca here in Monterey, where we both shoot motorsports all year long: moto gp, cars, etc. only shoots on 1fps.
    He shot D2X's, then D3's, now D3X's. All the time, only shooting 1 fps. Just because you have 9 fps, doesn't mean you're using it all the time. I'll shoot golf at a 5fps. I learned the trick of pre-visualizing where I want my photo of the motorcycle to be, tracking it to that point, then shooting a few frames, usually 2-3. It saves on space when editing and I'm working from a group of much better photos. It's not the "spray and pray" method. Just because newer equipment is better sometimes, doesn't mean every single pro photog is going to drop their old gear.
    A lot of photogs who shoot basketball still prefer the D1X on a strobe system, simply because it has a 1/500 sync speed and they're making fantastic photos.
    I think the D300 is a great choice and own one, but I see a lot of people saying "oh, the D90 is a better choice over XYXY." and yeah, for smaller gigs, or even weddings, sure, but I prefer the full-body feel of a good, professional body. I also like how professional lenses balance on the camera.
    A lot of people complain about the weight of the camera, but when you're shooting a 300/400/500/600mm lenses, a D2X is chump-weight.
    All the camera is is a tool for making photos. Every tool has it's designated use. Simple as that.
     
  21. Links in a chain... 99.5% of the work I see the photog is the weak link. How does a camera that is say 25% better make a difference when you are not even getting near max quality out of the one they already own?​
    I see your point in the discussion. I just do not see anyone claiming greatness or being better then their camera. I do not look at anyones pictures unless it's in the thread as it's to much trouble.
     
  22. Jay Maisal a New York Professional photographer uses a D1X for his work. He has two of them. He finds it exciting to be able to shoot at ISO 200.
     
  23. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    I agree the D2x the OP mentioned is overpriced but some of the claims of how outdated it is are just ridiculous, I think many of you feel you need latest and greatest without really thinking it through.​
    Raymond, if you think about it carefully, you'll realize how far behind the D2X's technologies are:
    • Its 5 fps max frame rate is far behind what the D3/D3S, D700, D300/D300S can achieve.
    • Its memory write speed is 3 to 5 times slower than those same DSLRs mentioned above. As I pointed out earlier, when I used to shoot action with D2X, I got into the buffer full situation once in a while, which is very annoying. And I am not even a full-time sports photographer.
    • Its high-ISO results is poor at ISO 800. If you want good results, 400 is pretty much all the D2X can do. With the D300/D300S and even D90/D5000, you can easily use ISO 1600. The D3/D700 has good ISO 3200 and the D3S pushes to 6400 and perhaps a little more. In other words, if you shoot weddings, parties, or night sports, the D2X is several stops behind the current state of the art.
    • The D2X lacks live view, and its back LCD is a lot smaller than the 3" LCD that is now standard on the D90 and up. Today, even the lowly D3000 has a 3" LCD. If you shoot landscape, macro, products and other still subjects, the fact that you cannot use live view on a larger LCD for critical focusing and depth of field checking is now a major handicap.
    • The D2X lack the video option, which is now a standard feature since the beginning of 2009 on all new DSLRs with live view, from the D5000 and up. You can argue how useful video is, but I sure am glad to have it available in some occasions.
    • The D2X lacks the dual memory card feature, which is standard on the entire D3 family as well as on the D300S now.
    In other words, the D2X's technologies is so far behind that regardless of whether you shoot sports/action, low light, or still subjects, it is missing some critical features that are available on a moderately priced D300S, which is like $1550 today, new. I don't even bother to compare it against the D3S.
    And the D2X was announced in the fall of 2004 and didn't appear on the market until early 2005, the year I bought mine. That is how much things have changed in merely 5 years. In fact, most of those improvements happened between 2004 to 2007. The D300 that came on the market in late 2007 has all of the above improvements except for video and dual memory cards.
    I wonder how DSLRs will be like 3 to 5 years from now.
     
  24. I was looking at "Nature Photographer" today. A magazine that I purchased. On page 155 is a great ourdoor picture of a RAM that was shot with a D2x. Actually most of the pictures in the book are all better then I can do with my N80 and were shot with those old useless outdated camera's like the Maximum 9, 20D, 40D, D200, D2x. I think people see technology differently. Some folks need it all and some folks do not. Myself I am a big fan of rapid fire in bursts of 1. I get most of my family snaps that way. I shot our entire Chrismas on Elitechrome 200 that way. I had a great time. The slides will be in perfect condition 80 years from now. Of course there might not be any film scanners left but the positives will be in great shape. However I would not purchase a D2x beater camera for $800.00. Not because I think the technology is horrible but because I think it's likely to have problems with function. Besides you cannot load Ektachrome in the thing. They forgot the door (LOL)
     
  25. Personaly I would buy a used D2Xs today if it was in good condition and the right price. Personaly I feel that most pro DSLRs are only as good as the person behind the camera. Unless someone really can't live with the D2X's not so stellar Hi ISO performance then I can't see why great images cannot be made using a D2X.
     
  26. Even though there appears to be a consensus that newer DSLRs have numerous advantages over the D2X, the D2X has something the newer DSLRs do not have: "A3 Group Dynamic Closest Subject Pattern 1" auto-focus. This focus option has been left out of Nikon's newer DSLRs but is highly valuable for wildlife and sports photography.
     
  27. I think the D2x also has ISO 100 which is very helpful if you want long shutter speeds to capture movement. Nice for waterfalls and scenics. The new digital models do not include that except the D3x.
     
  28. I would if I was a working pro on a tight budget, mostly because I already have a D2H and compatible accessories. It would make sense from an economic standpoint. And the D2X would be a step up from the D2H in terms of mp resolution.
    But if I wasn't concerned about compatibility with some existing accessories that would be expensive to replace to suit other models, something like a D300 would make better sense.
     
  29. Interesting responses, I appreciate all the input. The D2x was my dream camera for the past few years but now that I've read all the postings and had a long weekend to think about it I think I'll pass on the body because of the relatively high price and high accuation count. I'd still love to own a D2x and when one shows up for a really good price I'll snag it. I have a chance to play with my brother's D200 and D300 when I go to Washington D. C. for New Years this weekend and I'll see how I like the D300. I think the video option of the D300s may push me in that direction.
     

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