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Old 06-02-2007, 02:37 AM
Darren Darren is offline
TE Senior Member
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 854
Default Re: Need help with chosing a DSLR Camera

While I understand what you are saying, it is exactly because of who the target market is that makes the D40/X the very worst possible camera for that market in my opinion. I certainly have no problem with you having a different opinion, but mine is certainly different.

My reason for hating the D40 (and I do hate it), is that it quite likely cripples the buyer who didn't know any better when making the purchase. I fully believe that many first time buyers will believe at the time of purchase that the kit lens, or perhaps a two zoom lens kit will be all they ever want. If this is true, the D40 is fine. However, if they are like me, or like many of my friends who have become more serious about photography, they will find that a kit lens is not what they want in the end. After a while they will want higher performance lenses and primes are higher performance lenses than zooms. They are faster, typically sharper and most typically produce better bokeh as well as being lighter. So, now we have a shooter who has found that s/he really loves the hobby and wants to take the next step. There are tons of people who will want a cheap, fast prime as their first "better lens". Certainly if you are shooting night scenes or indoors without a flash, the f/4.5 on the kit zooms isn't going to do it for you. Now, what is that slightly more experienced D40 shooter going to do? S/he could buy one of the Nikkor primes, but there goes AF. The only option will be the Sigma 30/1.4, which is a good lens, but which is not tiny either and it is not made by Nikon, which many want. The very first "good" lens a D40 shooter wants is just not there, but they already own the camera. What are their choices?? They can buy a new body, which is a horrible value, of course. They can make due with the one lens which matches that description, or they can suffer. I don't see any of those as being good options. Actually, I see them all as being terrible options and options the inexperienced user won't even understand when making the original purchase.

How many people have advised to add a cheap 50/1.8 as an essential piece of kit for a very low price when suggesting "what next" to a new camera owner? Lots, I see it all the time. Again, this option is totally gone now. What is even more frightening, should you be a Nikon user, is that I would bet almost anything that the replacement for the D80 will be similarly crippled. This is good business for Nikon; people will be forced to buy more new, not used, lenses in the future. This is not good news for Nikon shooters. Even worse is that if this does happen, the market for used Nikkor lenses will drop quite a lot. Those Nikkor primes youhave already will be worth much less should you want to sell them. I think that can't be good news for anyone who is a Nikon shooter.

The irony is that, I am not a Nikon shooter, but I have always been a Nikon fan. With the D40, that is not true anymore. Also, it is worth remembering that this is the same Nikon company which tried to force the purchase of Nikon software by encrypting the white balance so third party companies couldn't use it. Fortunately, the market reacted loudly to that, but it seems a bad omen looking back.

It is too bad I think that this has happened, as the D40 should be an exciting camera, one which pushes the envelope for all users, just like the D70 and D200 did.
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