Nikon D50 - Some photos

Discussion in 'Photography' started by Michael D. Bunting, Jul 8, 2006.

  1. Michael D. Bunting

    Michael D. Bunting Screenwriter

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    Here are a few shots from my Nikon D50. I have actually returned the camera and will be purchasing something else later this year. I guess that I just wasn't as impressed with this camera as I thought I would be - that and I wanted some additional time to do a bit more research on some of my other options. The D50 purchase was hurridly made as we were going on vacation to Hawaii the next day.

    I have just started to get back into photography after not really keeping up for the past 12 years or so. My goal is to have a part-time photography (wedding/photo shoots) business for after I retire from the Military here in about 10 years. I figure 10 years should be enough time to get back in the habit [​IMG]So, here you go:


    http://www.mikeandelizabethbunting.c...0/DSC_0032.JPG (My favorite)

    http://www.mikeandelizabethbunting.c...0/DSC_0036.JPG (leaf closeup)

    http://www.mikeandelizabethbunting.c...0/DSC_0104.JPG (USS Arizona Memorial)

    http://www.mikeandelizabethbunting.c...0/DSC_0190.JPG (Coastline)

    http://www.mikeandelizabethbunting.c...0/DSC_0133.JPG (PCC Canoe Paegant)

    http://www.mikeandelizabethbunting.c...0/DSC_0156.JPG (PCC Canoe Paegant)

    http://www.mikeandelizabethbunting.c...0/DSC_0187.JPG (PCC Canoe Paegant)
     
  2. todbnla

    todbnla Screenwriter

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    Awesome pics Mike, that first one is a keeper for sure...!
     
  3. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    Hi, Mike.

    That first one is very nice indeed although maybe a little bit of postprocessing tweak would help bring out its best. That's very often the case w/ DSLR photos. OTOH, maybe you prefered the more subdued look vs going for more "pop" in the image.

    Anyway, I was wondering what about the D50 did not meet your expectations? Perhaps, you were expecting the straight-from-camera images to be brighter or more vibrant? Since you mentioned you're just now getting back into photography, I'm assuming that these are just straight-from-camera JPEGs w/out any postprocessing applied -- they look that way to me anyhow. As you do your research on DSLRs, you'll find that getting the most out of these cameras usually means shooting in RAW w/ an eye towards doing some postprocessing to get the best results. Postprocessing does not necessarily mean tons of editing, but it could often just be a tiny bit of contrast tweaking, appropriate amount of sharpening, possibly a bit of highlight recovery and/or exposure adjustment, etc. Leaving all those things on auto would not be adviseable. Also, very many people prefer a brighter default tonal response ala Canon instead of Nikon, so you may find a need to either regularly apply the necessary tweak of the tone curve in postprocessing or use an in-camera custom tone curve (which unfortunately requires the use of Nikon Capture though that's available for 30-day free trial and would only be needed once to upload the desired tone curve).

    OR perhaps, you're just underwhelmed by the entry-level body of the D50? In that case, you'll need to spend more $$$ to get the kind of body you want. Maybe something like the Nikon D200 -- or possibly the D70s in between or a Canon equivalent, if you're not married to the Nikon system.

    There's also the matter of having a cropped view/sensor in all these lower end DSLRs, if you didn't know that already -- only a very few highend Canon bodies (ie. 1Ds series, 5D) and the now obsolete Kodak bodies (for both Canon and Nikon systems) offer full 35mm view/sensor size.

    And there's also the matter of resolution being not quite up to the best that 35mm film offers -- though in practice, that's rarely an issue for most folks. If you really need more resolution (for landscapes and such), then yeah, you should definitely look towards a higher end body.

    _Man_
     
  4. James L White

    James L White Supporting Actor

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    How is the D50? I'm looking for an SLR for a decent price, is the build and durablity good that's what I really need to know.
     
  5. brentl

    brentl Cinematographer

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    I must be one of those guys that's easily satisifed. I am way more than happy about my month old D50. the pi ctures look good out of the box, but I'll try my hand at Photoshop and see if I can improve them.

    I DIDN't get the 18-55 though, I got a used 18-70 from Nikonians, it's a worthy upgrade.

    One problem I noticed was with 200 being the lowest ISO setting I already need a ND filter ... or 2.

    The biggest 2 things I'll miss from a D70 purchase would be the front dial and the LCD cover. Otherwise the D50 is supposed to look better "out of the box" than the D70.

    Brent
     
  6. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    Personally, I thought the D50 is a nice little DSLR -- I had one briefly last year when my old D70 was in the shop for the dreaded BGLOD problem. The D50 is certainly a great value and excellent entry level DSLR. Yeah, the body feels a bit plasticky, but not nearly as much so as the Canon equivalent. It's small-ish (compared to most DSLRs anyway), but not too small for most folks -- the Canon 350D/DRebel XT is smaller w/ a slimmer grip, which some folks do not like.

    I did miss not having the front dial, but that might not be much problem if you're not already used to having a front dial. There are a couple other useful buttons missing, but again, might not be a big deal to you. The viewfinder will definitely seem small compared to film SLRs, but that's to be expected for a low-end DSLR (for now anyway) -- the D70/D70s viewfinder is no bigger (nor brighter), so you'll need to go up to the D200 if you want bigger (and a tad brighter). The D50 viewfinder also doesn't have optional on-screen grid lines, if that matters to you. Also, manual ISO settings are in 1-stop steps instead of 1/3-stop steps (like all other Nikon DSLRs), but that's probably no big deal -- but if you want ISO 100, then you'll need to get a D200 or D2X. The D50 (and D70/D70s) also doesn't provide metering support for old manual AI lenses, if that matters to you. And I wasn't too crazy about having to use SD cards for it (vs CF cards for all other Nikons).

    On the bright side, [​IMG] the D50's onboard flash offers better coverage than D70/D70s (and also D200) though it doesn't provide any wireless flash control at all -- the D70/D70s offers basic wireless flash control of iTTL speedlights while D200 offers more comprehensive CLS control (but still not quite equal to an SB800 or dedicated CLS module). Of course, if you put an SB800 (or dedicated CLS module) on top of the D50, then you can have all the wireless control you want anyway. [​IMG] Also, as Brent says, straight-from-camera D50 images will tend to look more pleasing (to most folks) than most other Nikons although I'd still recommend shooting RAW w/ intention to do some postprocessing, if you want best results (or more control over the final results) -- Auto WB w/ indoor lighting would still be a problem though.

    So really, for most folks, there isn't much appreciable difference between D50 and D70/D70s -- and certainly, most casual shooters will actually prefer the D50 over the D70/D70s. The body differences are much more pronounced when you jump to the D200 -- and it also offers higher resolution, but at a modest cost to noise level (at least at the "per pixel" level). However, even then, not everyone will find it worthwhile to pay the big premium for the jump.

    _Man_
     
  7. Thomas Newton

    Thomas Newton Screenwriter

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    Going by a .PDF chart at the Nikon site, it appears that the D50 also lacks support for what some people call "high-speed sync".

    This is the ability to use the flash at greater than the normal "mechanical" sync speed (which I believe is 1/500th of a second on the D50 and D70s).
     
  8. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    FYI, the D70/D70s also do not offer "high-speed sync". Higher end Nikons offer that, but their normal sync speeds top out at 1/250s. From what I understand, this diff has mostly to do w/ the D50/D70/D70s using a CCD that offers electronic shutter that is used above the 1/250s point, which presumably reduces the mechanical requirements (and costs) of doing it all w/ the mechanical shutter.

    Anyway, depending on your exact needs, it could be better to have the higher normal sync speeds of the D50/D70/D70s instead of the "high-speed sync" mode of the other Nikons (and also found on many other cameras). This is because "high-speed sync" mode is actually a trick feature that will substantially reduce the power/reach of the flash whereas the higher 1/500s max sync of the D50/D70/D70s do not reduce the power/reach of the flash. This diff could be quite meaningful for shooting fast moving subjects in a situation that requires flash (assuming 1/500s is fast enough). OTOH, the more commonly available "high-speed sync" mode would probably be more useul for general outdoor photography where you need some fill flash for a nearby subject in bright daylight situations.
     
  9. Thomas Newton

    Thomas Newton Screenwriter

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  10. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    That chart is wrong on at least a couple items, so I wouldn't be surprised if it's also wrong about the availability of high-speed flash sync on the D70s. It seems like the chart maker did some copy-and-pasting and made some mistakes. For instance, the D50 and D70s do not provide metering support for AI-P Nikkor lenses contrary to what the chart says -- indeed, the chart would have you think there are no diffs between any of those DSLRs in terms of lens support. Also, the D50 does not provide 1/3-EV steps for manually setting ISO, and IIRC, the available diopter adjustments for the D50 and D70s should be different.

    And lastly, the closely related spec for "Top TTL Sync" speed of the D70s seems rather odd at 1/250s even though "X-Sync" speed is at 1/500s. Since I have never heard of such diffs w/ flash support between D70 and D70s and the D70/70s are much closer to the D50 (including the sensor w/ electronic shutter) than to the higher end bodies, I would have to believe that spec is just another error on Nikon's part.

    _Man_
     

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