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      11-20-2008, 12:10 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by LaYzEe View Post
so my friend is saying dont get the D40 or D40x becuase it doesnt have an auto focus (internal focus drive motor) so in order to have it, u'll need to buy a lens that comes with it already.

what do u guys think of the d80? prices should be going down by now right?
Yes, the lenses have the motor internally. There are mixed feeling on this and I went back and forth over this in the beginning. I dont think its a show stopper for a few reasons. One, you dont already own lenses, so its not like you're wasting money, just get lenses with the motor inside (make sure the lens states "AF-S"). you can get the kit lenses on ebay quite inexpensively.

Second, I like how the focus motor is in the lens, so you have less wear and tear on the internal one when you are switching lenses around (you have more motors doing the work instead of a single one). Also, not that its likely with a nikon, but if the motor breaks, you dont have to send your camera body in for repair and be without a camera.

The new nikon lenses are great, dont let the focus thing stop you.. worst case is that you have to manually focus if you borrow someone else's lens.. The d40x is a GREAT camera, especially for someone starting out with SLR.

BTW I have a d80 at work and I MUCH PREFER the d40x. I think it takes better pictures, it has their updated interface and its lighter and easier to carry. Please dont buy a d80 over a d40x. Maybe the d60 is a consideration?! I'm not sure what focusing it uses (lens or body), but again, dont let the lens focus malarchy bother you. Just get it, you'll love it. It makes me look like a pro!

Just make sure that you budget for a flash, its pretty much required unless you are using a fixed focus lens or something. The on-camera flash is not great at distance, and if you have a big lens, it will produce a shadow at the bottom of your image. If you're on a budget get the small flash (~100), if you have some cash, get the middle one (~200) , and if want to have fun with multiple flashes, get the big ones. The ttl flash stuff is really neat, but honestly, I just use a single flash most of the time. I have the big flashes, but if I were to do it again, I'd just get the middle one. I did own the small one for a week and it is great, especially for the money, but I found it was not strong enough at distances over 20 ft or so. Indoors or normal shooting though, it would be fine. There is a mod where you cut a white film canister's end off and place it over the flash head and it works awesome! Free mod! I like to shoot at weddings, so this was was prompted me to get the larger flashes.

I used to own the 18-135 lens and it is good if you are on a budget. I ended up selling it on ebay to buy the 18-200VR because I wanted a little more range.

I use the 18-200 VR lens and a fixed focus 60mm. Both of them are excellent. I dont need to use my flash with the 60mm - this lens was released a few months ago and its quite expensive, not sure its worth the money..unless you are really critical. Most of the time I use the 18-200VR and that lens is worth the money. Its AWESOME but it does require the flash. But together its a really nice shooting camera. I also have the 18-55 kit lens, which is good, especially for a kit lens..but doing it over I'd just get the d40x body, the 18-200VR lens and the middle flash (I forget the model, d600 maybe), and call it a day. I feel now that my camera setup is great and I have no feeling like I want to upgrade.

It will look expensive up front, but you will have bought the best combo (IMO) for this camera and it will take amazing shots. I think most people buy the kit lens, upgrade, upgrade again and then end up spending a lot more than if they would have bought the right stuff in the first place - I certainly did this.

Another word of advice, you only need one extra battery, not two. The battery life on these cameras is amazing. I can take thousands of pictures on one battery.

FWIW, I also have a canon rebel xti at work and I HATE it. The menus and operations are so complicated I find it difficult to take a decent picture. It also feels sort of cheap.