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Questions for you photgraphers

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by HotRodSteve, Jul 11, 2018.

  1. HotRodSteve

    HotRodSteve Friend of Leo's

    Sep 24, 2013
    The Hudson Valley
    I'm thinking of buying a Nikon D3300. When I got into photography back in the 1980s I bought an Olympus OM-1n with a 1.4 lens, never used a flash. It took great photos and I never should have given it away, but such is life, I drifted away from photography but want to get back. My iPhone seems like an old 110 camera to me.

    How do the new digital SLR cameras compare to the old film SLR cameras in picture quality? Will this D3300 communicate with my Linux PC?
    ladave likes this.
  2. Slowisfast

    Slowisfast Tele-Meister

    Jul 9, 2014
    Mt. Rainier
    Look for a used Nikon d700. 2400 new but sub 500 used on Amazon now. Just bought another one for my wife and it still produces some of the most film like files I've seen. Full frame sensor and beautiful color reproduction.

    With affordable prime lenses (50/1.8 ~100) it's perfect.
    ladave likes this.
  3. ladave

    ladave Tele-Meister

    Sep 25, 2017
    Los Angeles
    I used to shoot professionally. Product, Editorial, Lifestyle, Weddings ETC.

    Have not kept up much lately with gear but agree with Slowisfist. I had a D700 as a backup to my D3. Excellent a matter of fact, maybe I should pick one up.

    Hard to go to cropped sensor once you are used to full frame.

    I think I still have my Dad's OM-1 somewhere.
  4. dannew02

    dannew02 Friend of Leo's

    Apr 2, 2010
    Erin Prarie, WI
    I did photography for years. What I was taught, and heard countless times working at various camera stores,
    Spend your money on the lens, not the body! As long as the meter/shutter are in spec (and unless you’re buying used or refurbished) there’s no reason they won’t be spot on these days, any body will take the same picture. All the various features are just more or less convenience. I used a pair of D40’s as my only (digital) bodies, and there were nothing they didn’t do, that I needed them to.
    Oh and they were “only” 6MP, and I routinely made 11x14’s or cropped a lot out of the images and they were fine. Don’t get too hung up on what number of MP your camera has. For the most part, any lens from today will be sharper than old lenses, and if they have some kind of image stabilizer, they’ll be sharper in low light than old lenses will be (and a million times more useful than hand holding a film camera ever was!
    RoyBGood likes this.
  5. Finck

    Finck Tele-Afflicted

    Oct 11, 2017
    São Paulo - Brazil
    I have a D3200, which has a bit less resourses than the D3300. It's a good camera for a non professional usage, I have taken very nice pictures with it. Agree that a camera with full frame sensor is a better choice, specially if you can get it for a good price.

    The standard lens that comes with the kit (I believe that both D3200 and D3300 come with the same model) is not the best, but serves well for hobby usage. Invest in better lens if you can. Also, an external flash unit is a must, the integrated flash sucks.
  6. Gibson

    Gibson Friend of Leo's

    Feb 13, 2007
    Just passing thru
    A D3300 will produce great-looking files, and is more camera than most people will likely ever need if you're comfortable with the Nikon ecosystem.

    As another poster noted, it's the lenses that will have the longer-term affect on your photography as bodies come and go over the years. Depending on your level of interest, if you think you might end up leaning toward a full-frame sensor down the road, it's going to work out more expensive if you start out buying crop frame lenses now and then have to replace them later.

    Should be no issue with Linux, assuming you have the right software—I suggest looking at Darktable if you're not yet settled in that area. A steepish learning curve, but a very flexible and comprehensive post-processing application (and free).
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2018
  7. Blrfl

    Blrfl Tele-Meister

    May 3, 2018
    Northern Virginia
    I shot and processed film for many years and switched to digital 18 years ago. The two are different enough that I don't put any more stock in saying a digital image is film-like any more than I do saying a film image is digital-like. Both have their strengths and weaknesses, and you make good images by mastering them. The thing about film is that the body didn't make a whole lot of difference. If the film got better, you got the benefits just by loading a new roll. With digital, the sensor is built into the body and you don't get major improvements without buying a new one.

    My experience with both has been that the lenses make all the difference. Even the low-end bodies turn in really nice work with a pro lens screwed onto the front. The images in this Flickr pool were taken with a D40, which is probably the least-capable consumer DSLR Nikon ever made. There's a lot of nice work in there; many of the first few dozen were shot with midrange lenses. The ones taken with the cheap kit lenses stick out. Primes are still really good and really cheap; for zooms you have to spend money to get better results.

    This was shot with a pro lens (70-200 f/2.8 VR I) on an enthusiast body (D750) and looks great even when blown up. (Sorry for the ugly watermark; I've had my stuff stolen before.) I doubt what I was shooting 30 years ago would have produced in the same kind of result.


    Bottom line: Find a DSLR and lens that fit your budget and go take the best pictures you can with it.

    Every Nikon SLR body that has USB will communicate with your Linux PC just fine; they come up as USB mass storage devices. Personally, I pull the cards out and stick them in my card reader.

    If you feel inclined to learn to process your digital images and are running Linux, I highly recommend Darktable. Shooting raw will improve things, too, because you don't get stuck with the decisions made by the in-camera JPEG processor. It does make the process less set-and-forget, but it's the best way to wring everything you can out of whatever camera you're using.
    Tommy Biggs likes this.
  8. Stefanovich

    Stefanovich Tele-Holic

    Jan 27, 2010
    Kingston, Ontario
    The last body I bought was a Nikon D-7000. It is not full frame, but it has been a good reliable camera for me for 6-7 years. As has been mentioned, MP does not matter very much unless you go very low, so it comes down to how you like the camera and what features you actually use. I like fast flash sync times, and wide angle lenses. The cropped sensor of the D-7000 (or D-3300) is awful for wide angle, but there is a much better variety of lenses available for them for lower prices. As a bonus, a full-frame lens works just fine on a cropped sensor, but not the other way around. I have an old, cheap Tamron 70-210 and because only the center of the lens is focusing onto the cropped sensor, I get better quality images than I did on my full frame camera.

    Ultimately, you really can't go wrong with any Nikon or Canon D-SLR. The important thing is to actually take pictures with it! (And learn how to use it properly)
  9. Nickadermis

    Nickadermis Friend of Leo's

    Dec 18, 2016
    Camden Point, MO
    The D700 is a solid suggestion ! Actually most full frame choices are solid suggestions. If you were used to the great viewfinders in quality film cameras the crop sensor viewfinder will be a disappointment. Or it was for me. Image quality is just fantastic for color work. I still use film to print B&W but if you are just posting online it isn’t worth the hassle,expense, and time involved. (I’m A Luddite and will keep on staining my fingers until I can’t do it anymore)
    black_doug and Slowisfast like this.
  10. imwjl

    imwjl Poster Extraordinaire

    Mar 21, 2007
    My mom's basement.
    I don't hold the fan boy brand bias many have but admit to being happy with my commitment to Canon lenses, flash and bodies. Especially with my last purchase of STM type lens and sensor that aids video shooting. All stuff is so good now that you should also consider video capabilities.

    If you're not committed to a traditional SLR system it could be worth looking at the newer mirror-less systems. Some associates are very happy with those commitments.

    A commitment to one of Canon or Nikon means you have a large array of items you can rent or buy used. If you committed to a better or good system consider flash units and lenses. My quality lens and flash purchases have outlived the usefulness of bodies and batteries. They and not the body have made all the difference for a lot of good images.

    If that iPhone is not a late model Plus (7 or 8) or X with two lenses anyone with interest in photography and video should have one of those three on your shopping list regardless. They are so good for so much that all my other gear just sits a lot of the time.

    Look for used stuff. A whole lot of people don't use the SLR gear they bought.
    Bill and Tommy Biggs like this.
  11. Paul Jenkin

    Paul Jenkin Friend of Leo's

    Aug 17, 2017
    Essex, UK
    I shot weddings as a second income for a while in the early 80s and used OM1n and OM2n. I still shoot a lot of film but I have a Nikon D810 and a Fuji X-Pro2 for digital work.

    The D700 would, as has already been mentioned, be a great choice. I know nothing of the model you suggested but I expect it'll be very good. Depends on how you use cameras, I suppose. I tend not to be too precious with them and, as a result, I go for strong build quality - which tends to be towards the pro end.

    Lenses are, arguably, more important as you will usually keep and use those much longer than you'll keep a body. If you go for the D3300, look for "DX" lenses (modified for a crop sensor. If you go for a D700, then it's "FX" lenses you'll need.

    Actually, the best advice I can give you is let your hands decide. I've always worked on the basis that the brand is pretty irrelevant and that if it feels right and the controls feel intuitive and easily found without having to take your eye away from the viewfinder, that's the camera to go for.
  12. TokyoPortrait

    TokyoPortrait Tele-Meister

    Dec 10, 2017
    Tokyo, Japan
    This (wot is wrote & quote above).

    I live just outside Tokyo, work in Tokyo and um, take photos. I have access to, essentially, anything (often I rent stuff and pass the cost on). And, that's what I tell people who ask me. Today, it doesn't matter - they're all good enough. Hold one, how does it feel?

    Blunty put, cameras are like guitars I suspect, people who make money with them just pick the ones they need for the job and get on with it. People who don't tend to be the ones who quibble over whether or not this or that lens has tone glass... :D
    oyobass, optofonik, fendertx and 2 others like this.
  13. Tommy Biggs

    Tommy Biggs Tele-Afflicted

    Jun 17, 2010
    Northern NJ
    My two cents, you will be very happy with Nikon (or Canon) images. Even the kit lenses will be good enough to get some good stuff, at least initially. I’m ok with crop sensor, at half the cost of full. I. The end the lenses make the bigger difference for me.

    My recommendation is to take a class on “getting the most out of your DSLR “. It’s nice to have a pro walk you through it, reminding you of things you already knew, and showing you how to achieve them with new gear. Here in North Jersey, Unique Photo has a 3 class series, 2 hours each that was maybe 60 bucks with a Groupon.Sure you can figure it out on your own,but it helped me ‘focus’ ;)
  14. Andy B

    Andy B Tele-Afflicted Gold Supporter

    Mar 16, 2003
    The Nikon D3300 is an excellent choice to start with. The kit lens will be fine. The trick is not to get swallowed up in all the technical stuff. You can very easily bankrupt yourself in the quest for more pixels and resolution.
    Just yesterday I acquired a used Nikon D7100 to replace my D90 whose card reader is getting flakey. The D90 is old enough there is no support for it any longer. This winter I'll take it apart and see if resoldering the card reader contacts will let it live a while longer.
    My suggestion about your PC is to buy an external card reader for the SD card and transfer images that way.
  15. Bones

    Bones Telefied Ad Free Member

    Dec 31, 2005
    Luddite Island, NY
    I have a Nikon d750 (full frame)currently. Before that, I had a Sony a99 (full frame), before that a Sony a77(crop), before that a Sony a100(crop).

    Coupled with these bodies, a variety of low and higher end lenses.

    Never at a loss to get printable, saleable or publishable images from any of them.
    Nickadermis likes this.
  16. hrstrat57

    hrstrat57 Tele-Afflicted

    Nov 21, 2016
    Rhode Island
    I shoot Nikon D700 and D300s combo

    12mp doesn’t blow up my computer and both love my older Nikon AF D lenses.

    My Nikon AF D 80-200 f2.8 is the secret weapon attached to this gear. I also use my many old Nikon manual focus lenses with great success.

    Spending $3000 is not required to get pro gear! The OM1 was a pro level camera I doubt the Nikon D3000 level kit will satisfy you.

    KEH can be a good resource for buying as can be your LCS if they stock used gear. Folks trade gear for no reason all the time. I’ve scored nearly unused older Nikon pro level gear at my local shop on numerous occasions.

    I’d recommend you join the Nikontes online forum regarding all things Nikon. Very friendly core group of posters/site has very similar vibe to this one.

    If considering Sony/Minolta the Dyxum forum is equally excellent with a real cool vibe.

    Good luck!
    Aztex likes this.
  17. john_cribbin

    john_cribbin Tele-Afflicted

    Nov 26, 2014
    I'd say consider how heavily you're going to get into photography before you buy.

    Digital cameres have come on leaps and bounds in the last decade.

    Another D7000 owner here, had one since they were launched. Note I say owner rather than user. For than past couple of years it's hardly seen the light of day. I am the owner of an Olympus TG-5 Tough. This is a compact, waterproof, fairly robust camera. I've abseiled with it, hung of mountains with it, jumped into waterfalls with it etc. The images are really good. In reality, it may not have the pure quality of an SLR, but I've now got great images that would be totally impractical with an SLR, without several hundred pounds worth of even more bulky waterproof casings.

    Personally, I think SLR's are heading towards being obsolete except for pro applications.

    Check out for all things Nikon.
    optofonik likes this.
  18. CK Dexter Haven

    CK Dexter Haven Friend of Leo's

    Jun 7, 2017
    I continue to use the D40 semi professionaly, there is more in most digital SLRs than most people will use in a life time, unless a more expensive body has some feature that you know you will return to again and again, or is exceptionaly rugged and you know you are going in "harms way" so to to speak I would get the least expensive body for the system you prefer, and unless you know you are going to be working in such away that you that you need a outlandishly high MP count, and rapid recovery just grab something used. I still routinely use a Cannon G1 compact that is 1.3 MP for paying jobs. Paid $25 for it a charger a few batteries and cards off of consignment at a local shop. The biggest thing in older bodies is battery life, so grab a few off Amazon, and keep them charged. Same w/ lenses, people wail and moan about plastic elements, rings etc. but untill you know exactly what you wish to do and whom you wish to do it for, entry level lenses will out perform most peoples needs and abilities. I doubt that you will notice the difference between files and negs, if you have been out of film for a number of years, it's there it's just not the deal the most people make it out to be w/o the services of a top notch pro lab, or a exceptional personal dark room set up, and years of experience within.
  19. beninma

    beninma Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

    Mar 17, 2017
    Everything is flat out amazing now.. all these fancy cameras have this ridiculous/mind-boggling/amazing feature that their is no recurring fee to take pictures. It saves a couple thousand a year for me at least over film. ;) And even more amazingly you never have to use a negative or slide scanner.

    I am well into the Canon camp just because of lenses/compatibility. If not Canon I'd be all over Nikon... Nikon and Canon get it that you invest in the "system" if you're really into photography and that you are not going to appreciate forced obsolescence. Some of the other brands are not so committed to this. You'll see a lot of the amateur photographers completely obsessed with flipping gear and being super concerned about having the newest tech (GAS) but it's really of minor importance compared to your skill/eye.

    Canon was pretty dominant 10-15 years ago when I started buying lenses. For years their has been a chicken little concern that Canon is behind because of sensor dynamic range at base ISO. I've got enough stuff that realistically Canon would have to go out of business for me to switch. It'd cost me close to $10k to switch and get back to the same place. I spent that $10k over 20 years... I have no desire to flip stuff to switch brands and lose my shirt. (And then have to go through a learning process to get used to a different system.)

    Whatever you get, study the manuals, get some books, take a class. I think as a general rule the fancier of a camera you get the worse it performs if you don't know what you're doing. If you don't learn how to use the camera really carefully you'll get much better results with a smartphone than you will with a high end DSLR. Particularly if you hand someone a 35mm/Full Frame digital camera... as the sensor size increases the depth of field drops and the pictures look blurrier if you can't focus competently. I had a Canon 5D Mark III, I have to be really careful to set it up in a failsafe way if I'm going to hand it to someone who isn't a photographer or they'll miss the focus and the pictures will be terrible. And this is obviously a camera with near magic autofocus capability in the hands of a skilled user.
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
  20. hrstrat57

    hrstrat57 Tele-Afflicted

    Nov 21, 2016
    Rhode Island
    Also important to be aware Nikon D3000 series and D5000 APS-C cameras cannot function fully with older Nikon AF D lenses and thus eliminate your best avenue for bargain pro used lens shopping. I believe all D7000 APS-C series Nikon cameras can fully function with D glass and those are great crop cameras too! D610/D700 and all Nikon full frame
    cameras love Nikon D glass of course.

    Again a membership to Nikonites forum will be a huge help re all things Nikon!
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