Anonymous asked in Consumer ElectronicsCameras · 1 decade ago

Buying new D-SLR - Nikon D50 or wait for the D80?

After a lot of research, I thought I found my camear. The Nikon D50. I am an amateur, who just wants to take great family shots. A new father, who uses a Canon SD500 point and shoot. This camera takes great photos in natural light, but in low light, the flash is bad. I started looking at ways to bounce the light off of the wall and such, and just realized I should look at A DSLR.

Long story short, I feel in love with the Nikon D50, or at least the reviews and postings. For me, it looks perfect, better then the Canon, even the new one they just released. But the Nikon D80 also looks great. Some have said the D50 has everything that I need and the features with the D80 i would not really need, but could grow with.

So if I buy the D50 for $550 plus some lenses, will i later regret the 10MP and faster/better processor of the d80? Are there other advantages? Please advise...again, not a professional, just want to take great photos of my son, and our family and travel.

12 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    When we fall in love with a type of a digital apparel, we tend to subsequently fall in love with their - naturally more advanced - successor models as well. If you're in doubt, I suggest you wait. You seem like a budding photographer and once you've got a D-SLR I suspect you'll develop into wanting/needing more capabilities from your camera, so why not wait. You can't have too many features ;-)

  • 1 decade ago

    You're a new father? Congratulations! In that case, I suggest you just buy the D50 and a good lens. My reasoning is this:

    1. The D50 is a great camera for what you want to do.

    2. You get to save your money for the more important things in life, like family and travel.

    3. Once the D80 becomes available, Nikon will have already announced the D90 ;-) It never ends...

    4. If you do decide to wait, by the time the D80 becomes available you would have already taken *tons* of great photos of your son with the D50! Trust me, in a few years those photos will be worth more to you than 10MP.

    BTW, the Nikon 50/1.8 is a cheap, sharp, and great lens for taking natural low-light baby portraits. Mom holding baby near a window in the early morning light: can't be beat! You might also want to look into getting an external flash like a SB-600 (or SB-800 if you can handle the cost and size) and triggering it wirelessly with the built-in flash which can also give you very nice lighting.

    Good luck and have fun taking photos

  • 1 decade ago

    I have a D200, D70s and my wife has a D50, so I feel qualified to answer. For the purposes you stated, you will love the D50. Just but some decent lenses, such as the Nikkor AF-S 18-70 f/3.5-4.5G ED DX lens and not the "kit" lens. She has this lens and I chose it EXPRESSLY for her usual subjects, which include children and landscapes. It has worked out well for her, so it would be a good choice for you. If you just have some money burnign a hole in your pocket, I think I'd consider getting an better lens instead of the D80. First of all, you are probably going to have a hard time finding a D80 at list price for a while, since it is already highly anticipated. I have an 18-200 VR (Vibration reduction) Nikon lens and it's the bomb. It costs about $1,000 (sometimes less), but it might well be the only lens you ever buy for your purposes. That VR really works and you might get some better scenic shots later in the day when you find that you're out there without a tripod.

    Another thing to consider... The D70s is being closed out for "only" about $150 more than a D50. The D70s and 18-70 lends I mentioned would be a killer combo for about $1,000.

    Getting the right memory card is also important so that you won't spend your time waiting for images to save. Get a 1 GB memory card, such as the Sandisk "Ultra" for decent write speed. You can get these in the $30 range. An "Extreme" is faster, but I doubt anyone would notice the difference except a pro.

    To recap: I think your choice of the D50 with the 18-70 lens is an excellent choice for the things you want to photograph. The D80 will cost about $450 more than the D50, if and when you can actually get one.

  • 1 decade ago

    The D80 is a fantastic camera and it has several advantages over the D50. For starters, it has 10MP vs. 6, and it has a bigger viewfinder. Frankly though, the D50 with its 6 MP is all you'll need to take beautiful pictures that you can blow up to 8x10 inch prints with amazing detail.

    If low light photography is a concern, the D50 actually looks better than the D80. In this case, it's an advantage that they crammed less photosites onto the same sensor size.

    So if you don't absolutely need the extra features of the D80, don't spend the extra $450 on it. Image quality comes from your lenses anyway, so if you have the extra budget, treat yourself to some great glass.

    Some options are:

    * Nikon 18-70mm (the one that comes as a kit with the D70s, sold seperately for about $320)

    * Nikon 18-200mm (an all-in-one lens for $750)

    * Nikon 50mm f/1.8 (for low light, it costs peanuts)

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  • 1 decade ago

    Go with the D50 and spend the extra money on lenses and a flash unit. The Nikon 18-200 lens is a fantastic "do everything" lens. It's very popular so it might be hard to find in stock. You might also want to get a larger memory card.

    While I'm sure the D80 will be a great camera, I think it's more than you need. Your money will be better spent on accesories for the D50. Remember: kids are expensive too! Congrats on being a new father!

  • 1 decade ago

    If you are just an amatuer, the D50 should suit you well.

    If you started getting into it and it turns into a more serious hobby, you'll want the D80. The D80 has a lot of better features and is worth the price. But the megapixel difference for an amatuer won't be that noticable. You can still print 20x30 in. prints with the D50.

  • 1 decade ago

    Several of my friends were wrestling with the same dilemma. All of them ended up saving the money and buying the D50 instead. They love it.

    It has most of the features of the D80, takes AMAZING photos, and is a lot less money.

    Stick with the D50 unless you are really looking for pro photography. Even then, the D50 is still great.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    As an amateur, you'll probably be really happy with the D50. We bought the D50 a few months ago, and we love it (both amateurs). The nice thing about the D50 is it has come down in price a lot. We got ours at Costco.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    A Nikon D50 would be great a good enough for an ameture. but if you're not in a hurry. from my point of view why not save your money and wait until 2 to 3 weeks before you go for your trip. buy a better one and you can use for longer time

  • 1 decade ago

    I say wait and watch the price go down on the newer version of that camera - as you when then they first hit the stores they cost a whole lot so even though you want to upgrade try waiting it will lest costly and the holidays are coming up so you should be able to grab one at a better price with all the upgraded capabilities.

    Be patient..........

    Source(s): My brother works for Ricoh Cameras and such he tells me what to get and the better ones out there for consumers like yourself.
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