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Thread: 70-200mm or D400

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    Hi to all. I'm in a slight dilemma on where should I put my money into my next equipment. Just want to tap on you guys' opinions.

    I'm currently shooting landscape, birding and macro. Yes, i'm not focusing but I just love doing them all.

    I have a UWA, a macro lens, a bigma & a couple other lens I intend to use for another topic I'm trying to learn next (in progress self learning). I also have 2 speedlights that I can utilized.

    Question
    I was wondering what should I get next if I want to do portrait photography while improving for other subjects that I'm also shooting. I've isolated these 2 huge cost purchases.

    For portrait:
    My current tools are a 50mm F/1.8, 17-50mm F/2.8 and 70-300mm VR used as a 70-200mm

    I'm currently using a D90.

    My considerations:
    For choosing D400, the reasoning is because I want a camera body with mirror up mode for landscape long shutter, and also for high FPS for birding.

    For choosing a 70-200mm F/2.8, it's a good lens for many situation and I wish to take advantage of the constant F/2.8 for portrait subject isolation (bokeh).

    Sorry for the lengthy story. Please, if you have the time, give your opinion.

    Thank you all
    Equipment: D800|D700|11-16|28-75|105 Micro VR|50 F1.4G|85 F1.8G
    Through the Lens of Cowseye

  2. #2

    Default Re: 70-200mm or D400

    Do you shoot long exposure landscape more or portraits more? I believe that will answer your question

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    Default Re: 70-200mm or D400

    You should keep your D90 for birding and macro.

    Buy a D700 or replacement for landscape and portraits.

    sell your 17-50/2.8 and UWA. Get a FX UWA like the Tokina 16-28/2.8 (1.28k new).

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    Thank you to the both of you for your inputs.
    Quote Originally Posted by daredevil123
    You should keep your D90 for birding and macro.

    Buy a D700 or replacement for landscape and portraits.

    sell your 17-50/2.8 and UWA. Get a FX UWA like the Tokina 16-28/2.8 (1.28k new).
    I had that thought once. It sounds logical but the price to pay (including the replacement FX lenses) way exceeds the budget.

    DD123, had you compared 16mm from the DX lens with the 16mm of the FX lens. Would be interesting if I could just use the DX version @ 16mm on a FX camera, hearing that it produce little to no vignetting at all.
    Equipment: D800|D700|11-16|28-75|105 Micro VR|50 F1.4G|85 F1.8G
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    Default Re: 70-200mm or D400

    You already have a D90 and quite a number of good lenses. No need to buy anymore IMHO.
    S5Pro|S3Pro|D50|16-85VR2|70-200VR|80-400VR|S50f1.4|105f2|135f2|SB900|SB80DX

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    Default Re: 70-200mm or D400

    Quote Originally Posted by TheChef View Post
    You already have a D90 and quite a number of good lenses. No need to buy anymore IMHO.
    Thanks for the reply. May I ask how could my current setup overcomes the problem I'm facing?
    For landscape, I'm using a pretty ok tripod + ballhead, with cable release. I thought the mirror up will help with the last bit tremor for long exposure.
    For birding, I was told that higher FPS won't help, or won't help much. Though I still don't understand why as I am figuring out on my own. There must be a reason for higher FPS right? My current knowledge comes from my own research and the various helpful seniors (they may or may not be on clubsnap) that I met during those lonely birding trips to Pasir Ris and Sungei Buloh.
    For portrait, or rather for acquiring a 70-200mm F/2.8, I was quite poisoned by several reviews and pictures of what people can take with them. I started a little portrait project with a friend. Even though it didn't turn out very well in the end, I would like to learn more and shoot more of portrait and flash photography.

    @brapodam: Your question is a tough one to answer, so I took a while to think. I dun know right now. At this point, I see DD123 logic is more correct in my opinion as a Fullframe camera will help more for both landscape and portrait. Just that the cost is really much higher than the both items. Considering all the extra cost to migrate lenses, i do not have the guts to move to FX yet. I'm not that good a photographer or rich enough to afford/own a FX camera without feeling guilty. Owning a 70-200mm F/2.8 might help me quite a bit in portrait and in birding with a little help from a teleconverter without losing too much of light.

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    Default Re: 70-200mm or D400

    Quote Originally Posted by TheChef View Post
    You already have a D90 and quite a number of good lenses. No need to buy anymore IMHO.
    second this. unless u really need higher FPS for birding.
    Google is your friend. Make use of it.

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    Default Re: 70-200mm or D400

    Quote Originally Posted by TheChef View Post
    You already have a D90 and quite a number of good lenses. No need to buy anymore IMHO.
    second this. for ur info, higher FPS = u get to capture more of the action alone. so which means ur chances of gettin the "right moment" from an action is higher. as for the 70-200 f/2.8, considering its price n ur sole intention of using it only for portraiture, why not save the money and get a AF-D 85 f/1.4 or the sigma 85 f/1.4 instead?
    Google is your friend. Make use of it.

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    Default Re: 70-200mm or D400

    Quote Originally Posted by Irvine View Post
    second this. for ur info, higher FPS = u get to capture more of the action alone. so which means ur chances of gettin the "right moment" from an action is higher. as for the 70-200 f/2.8, considering its price n ur sole intention of using it only for portraiture, why not save the money and get a AF-D 85 f/1.4 or the sigma 85 f/1.4 instead?
    Thank you for your inputs.
    Pardon me, maybe I wasn't clear, portraiture is definitely not going to be the sole purpose of the 70-200mm. But I did mention it's a lens with wide range of use.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cowseye View Post
    For choosing a 70-200mm F/2.8, it's a good lens for many situation and I wish to take advantage of the constant F/2.8 for portrait subject isolation (bokeh).
    I did, for a moment, consider the 85mm F/1.8 (not F/1.4 because it's too pricey) for a while but I ditched the idea in the end due to it's less flexible nature compare to a 70-200mm F/2.8. In case of any misunderstanding, I only wish to get a grey 3rd party 70-200mm to cut cost.

    BTW, just some note to add. Going FX is really a huge leap for me, the price to pay is too much at the moment. If I ever make money with photography, I may switch. But for now, for training purposes, it's kind of hard to commit such huge fortune to it. The gears that I have are really those bang for the buck equipments. Not saying that these equipments are no good (in fact I do cherish them a lot), these are the guys that will help me learn my way to better photography.

    I also did consider to stay on whatever I am doing (Macro, Landscape & Birding) and perfecting them... But the sad truth is, these aren't the main stream for money making. At least not in singapore AFAIK. That's the main driving force why I want to get into portraiture and events photography.

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    Default Re: 70-200mm or D400

    Quote Originally Posted by Cowseye View Post
    Thank you to the both of you for your inputs.


    I had that thought once. It sounds logical but the price to pay (including the replacement FX lenses) way exceeds the budget.

    DD123, had you compared 16mm from the DX lens with the 16mm of the FX lens. Would be interesting if I could just use the DX version @ 16mm on a FX camera, hearing that it produce little to no vignetting at all.
    From what I see now, all your lenses are FX lenses already except for the 17-50 and UWA. And if your UWA is Tokina 11-16, you can still shoot with it at 16mm. The resulting FOV at 16mm on FX is actually slightly wider than 11mm on DX. You can see sample pics I shot here and here.

    If you haven't noticed, the Tamron 28-75/2.8 is not bad of a lens, and it cost slightly less than the 17-50/2.8 new.

    Also, pay a little more and get the MB-D10 and use AA eneloops. You will be able to get 8FPS with that combo.

    And btw, D700 is at an awesome value now. If you know where to look, that is.
    Last edited by daredevil123; 18th April 2011 at 03:23 AM.

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    Default Re: 70-200mm or D400

    Quote Originally Posted by Cowseye View Post
    Thank you for your inputs.
    Pardon me, maybe I wasn't clear, portraiture is definitely not going to be the sole purpose of the 70-200mm. But I did mention it's a lens with wide range of use.


    I did, for a moment, consider the 85mm F/1.8 (not F/1.4 because it's too pricey) for a while but I ditched the idea in the end due to it's less flexible nature compare to a 70-200mm F/2.8. In case of any misunderstanding, I only wish to get a grey 3rd party 70-200mm to cut cost.

    BTW, just some note to add. Going FX is really a huge leap for me, the price to pay is too much at the moment. If I ever make money with photography, I may switch. But for now, for training purposes, it's kind of hard to commit such huge fortune to it. The gears that I have are really those bang for the buck equipments. Not saying that these equipments are no good (in fact I do cherish them a lot), these are the guys that will help me learn my way to better photography.

    I also did consider to stay on whatever I am doing (Macro, Landscape & Birding) and perfecting them... But the sad truth is, these aren't the main stream for money making. At least not in singapore AFAIK. That's the main driving force why I want to get into portraiture and events photography.
    I am on FX also now, but my stuff is still bang for the buck. I only have one lens that cost me over 1k and that is a recent acquisition.

    For 70-200/2.8, I went through the same route as you, looking for 3rd parties like Sigma or Tamron. But those are not that great also, and they are not that cheap. In the end I went for the older Nikon 80-200/2.8. Great glass great value. You might want to think about that.

    btw, you need a flash too, if you want to do events.

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    I'd Seen the prices you mentioned for D700 before. It's quite tempting. If I could really use my 11-16mm @ 16mm as a FX lens, it might change the whole picture.

    I know D700 with grip would be able to boost the FPS, but that would also lower the effective focal length due to the non cropped sensor. Which ends me in a dilemma instead

    I'd also tried the 80-200mm from a friend collection. The test was not conclusive due to bad weather and lighting. Maybe I should rent a copy to test again on a proper situation. The $400 diff from the sigma might be a deal breaker though...

    I'd two accessible flash guns for events. I'm pretty sure I'm ready in terms of the gear department to do events. But I'd another major problem to deal with....

    Thanks for your inputs DD123
    Last edited by Cowseye; 18th April 2011 at 07:45 AM.
    Equipment: D800|D700|11-16|28-75|105 Micro VR|50 F1.4G|85 F1.8G
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    If want to act better act fast. MY just reported 15% increase in prices of MIJ camera products.

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    Thanks for heads up.
    Equipment: D800|D700|11-16|28-75|105 Micro VR|50 F1.4G|85 F1.8G
    Through the Lens of Cowseye

  15. #15

    Default Re: 70-200mm or D400

    Quote Originally Posted by Cowseye View Post
    @brapodam: Your question is a tough one to answer, so I took a while to think. I dun know right now. At this point, I see DD123 logic is more correct in my opinion as a Fullframe camera will help more for both landscape and portrait. Just that the cost is really much higher than the both items. Considering all the extra cost to migrate lenses, i do not have the guts to move to FX yet. I'm not that good a photographer or rich enough to afford/own a FX camera without feeling guilty. Owning a 70-200mm F/2.8 might help me quite a bit in portrait and in birding with a little help from a teleconverter without losing too much of light.
    It is not wrong to own a FX camera even if you are doing photography just as a hobby. For birding the extra reach from DX definitely helps, but if you don't do birding as much as portraits and landscape, I think just switch to FX already. As DD123 said, 28-75 price is not that far off from 17-50, you can use your 11-16 as a 16mm prime, and get a 80-200 as your 70-200. Sigma recently raised the price of the non-OS 70-200 and reduced the price of the 70-200 OS, so now the 80-200 is a better choice imo, if you don't need that stabilisation.

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    Default Re: 70-200mm or D400

    Quote Originally Posted by brapodam View Post
    For birding the extra reach from DX definitely helps, but if you don't do birding as much as portraits and landscape, I think just switch to FX already.
    I also do a lot of macro too.. The extra reach will definitely help. It's either keep D90 as backup or get D400 without moving FX, I'll lose out quite a bit for doing portrait and landscape though.

    Quote Originally Posted by brapodam View Post
    Sigma recently raised the price of the non-OS 70-200 and reduced the price of the 70-200 OS, so now the 80-200 is a better choice imo, if you don't need that stabilisation.
    But, a grey Sigma 70-200mm macro is still much cheaper than a 80-200mm. The price I know for a new 80-200mm 2 touch is $1600 (local warranty). Is that the cheapest, while sigma is only $1200 (shop warranty). Warranty of either is not really an issue for me.

  17. #17

    Default Re: 70-200mm or D400

    Quote Originally Posted by Cowseye View Post
    I'd Seen the prices you mentioned for D700 before. It's quite tempting. If I could really use my 11-16mm @ 16mm as a FX lens, it might change the whole picture.
    I've been shooting with the 11-16 on d700. no vignetting at 16mm, and only slight vignetting at 15mm.

  18. #18

    Default Re: 70-200mm or D400

    Quote Originally Posted by Cowseye View Post
    I also do a lot of macro too.. The extra reach will definitely help. It's either keep D90 as backup or get D400 without moving FX, I'll lose out quite a bit for doing portrait and landscape though.


    But, a grey Sigma 70-200mm macro is still much cheaper than a 80-200mm. The price I know for a new 80-200mm 2 touch is $1600 (local warranty). Is that the cheapest, while sigma is only $1200 (shop warranty). Warranty of either is not really an issue for me.
    The 80-200 is $1400 at artworkfoto (grey set, 1 year shop warranty)

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    Quote Originally Posted by crazyson

    I've been shooting with the 11-16 on d700. no vignetting at 16mm, and only slight vignetting at 15mm.
    Thanks for the info bro. I assume IQ is ok?
    Equipment: D800|D700|11-16|28-75|105 Micro VR|50 F1.4G|85 F1.8G
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    Quote Originally Posted by brapodam

    The 80-200 is $1400 at artworkfoto (grey set, 1 year shop warranty)
    Is it? Hmmm makes me ponder more... I'll try to find out more on the comparison of these two lens. Thanks
    Equipment: D800|D700|11-16|28-75|105 Micro VR|50 F1.4G|85 F1.8G
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