Nikon D70 dSLR or Nikon CP8800 Non dSLR (Non-CCD Cleaning!!) ??

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Guest, Mar 3, 2005.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Hi everyone,

    Could anyone please help me with a difficult decision I can't seem to make?

    I'm stuck between the Nikon CP8800 and the Nikon D70.

    Here is my difficulty: The whole CCD cleaning thing is putting me off buying
    a dSLR. Every site you look at about cleaning the CCD, you are warned that
    it's difficult to do correctly, you can easily ruin your camera and, you can
    invalidate the warrenty. Besides, I want a camera to take pictures with, not
    to be regularly cleaning it!

    I would be grateful for your thoughts/experiences, AND opinions on the

    Thank you everyone in anticipation of your help.

    Darrell Burnett.
    Guest, Mar 3, 2005
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  2. Guest

    chrlz Guest

    Try, and work out what is really important to you - it
    really depends on what you want to shoot.

    I would be a bit more concerned about the 8800's shutter lag and
    general slowness, than the occasional need to clean a CCD. How often
    will you shoot moving objects? How often will you change the lens in a
    dusty environment? What about noise (high in the 8800)?... etc..
    chrlz, Mar 3, 2005
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  3. Guest

    leo Guest

    I have a Canon 20D so I can't comment on the two Nikon cameras you have
    in mind. I love the quick response of the SLR though. There will have
    dust in it but you'd be hard pressed to see any trace of it shows up in
    normal pictures. I think a casual user only need to clean it once or
    twice a year.
    leo, Mar 3, 2005
  4. Guest

    Nick Beard Guest

    The dust issue is not as bad as most folk make out. It is just a fact of
    life just like dust on an old vinyl record, you take good precautions and
    cleaning is minimal, plenty of good products out there to assist. My D70 is
    6 months old, I have changed lenses over 5o times at least in that time and
    I can only detect one tiny speck of dust which only shows up on a pic of say
    a clear blue sky or similar. Even then one can take it for a bird or
    somthing. I wait till I have 5 or 6 specks then i'll think about sensor
    cleaning. D70comes with Nikon view or Capture which has a clever program to
    delete dust digitaly from the sensor- it makes some kind of allowance for
    the dust. IMHO The advantages of the D70 system (True SLR) over a psudeo
    like the 8800 are immense.
    You will not be able to put on a 500 mm lens plus a 2x conv and get an
    excellent shot of a pilot 'scratching behind his ear whilst awaiting taxi
    instructions at an airport" for example.
    Nick Beard, Mar 3, 2005
  5. Guest

    Ed Ruf Guest

    FWIW, the D70 only comes with a demo of Capture which is required to use
    the dust reference frame. Also, this is only available when saving toe raw
    NEF format, not JPG.
    Ed Ruf, Mar 3, 2005
  6. My experience below. Not necessarily the "right" way of doing things, nor
    the right answer for everyone, but just "for information":

    When I started looking for a decent digital camera, I originally started
    looking at the 8700 (initially for no other reason than I saw a second-
    hand one in a window -- at that time, I hadn't done any research). As I
    dug into things, I got to the stage of trying to decide between the 8700
    and the 8800 (I liked what the 8800 offered, but it cost more etc.). I was
    on the verge of getting one or the other a couple of times, but never got
    to the "commit" stage.

    Initially, I had not so much "rejected" a dSLR, as never really considered
    one -- I wasn't a converting-SLR-film-user, and although I knew the basics,
    "playing with lenses and all that hassle" was "too much bother" for what I

    However, as I put off deciding between the 8700/8800 for longer, I saw more
    and more info/advice/dogmatism that led me to begin to consider a dSLR (and
    specifically the D70). At first this was "if only..."; but as I read more
    of the differences between the top-end (or, at least, 8MP) p&s cameras and
    bottom-end (6MP) dSLRs, the D70 became more and more attractive.

    In the end, I went for the D70 for a number of reasons, at least a couple
    of which are I hope legitimate:

    (a) Especially in difficult conditions, six million dSLR pixels should give
    better photos than eight million p&s ones;

    (b) Although it's not a situation that will crop up that often, I'd
    recently been to a Formula 1 training day at Silverstone, and couldn't get
    the shots I wanted with a compact film zoom camera nor an old/cheap digital
    p&s. While the D70 body isn't "professional sports standard", better
    shutter-lag, shot-speed and buffer-speed, plus not having an EVF that
    blanks between shots should be of benefit if I am ever in a similar

    (c) The general "expandability" of a dSLR... while I wanted to be able to
    take good photographs, I'm certainly not a "keen amateur", nor really is
    photography a "major hobby". As such, whatever I chose would likely be my
    main camera for several years to come. While I probably won't push against
    all the limits, I felt my options would be limited less with the D70.

    (d) While sometimes useful/fun, I didn't/don't see the lack of live preview
    nor the ability to take video clips as a major drawback.

    (e) If I'm honest, it appealed to the "techno-head" in me a bit...

    (f) Although I hadn't intended to spend what the D70 cost, I _could_ afford
    it (and didn't have to justify the extra to anyone).

    (g) I'd seen references to dust, but decided that _in_the_main_ it was one
    of those issues where you get the most noise (as in postings to usenet/the
    web) from people for whom it has become an obsession, and that for the
    (nearly) silent majority, it wasn't too big a problem.

    Did I make the right decision (for me)? I think so. I'm very happy with
    my D70. I probably don't yet _need_ all the D70 has to offer, but it's
    there if I do, and I think I'm less likely to think "if only my camera
    could..." than with the 8700/8800.

    If I _did_ have to make the choice again, I'd probably not make it between
    a 6MP dSLR and an 8MP p&s, as I don't think the extra 2 million p&s pixels
    are probably worth it for the price difference. Instead, I'd probably look
    for a good 4/5MP p&s. There's less compromise from packing so many pixels
    into a small sensor, more portability and a greater price differential.


    Graham Holden (g-holden AT dircon DOT co DOT uk)
    Graham Holden, Mar 3, 2005
  7. Sorry for sounding stupid, I have never owned a DSLR, so what exactly is
    Live Preview? Is it the ability to freeze the photo for 3-5 seconds like my
    Powershot G1 to see if the photo is well taken? Or is it the button to
    review Photographs? Or is when you switch settings like White Balance, Spot
    metering, the LCD instantly shows what it would look like "live" even b4
    you press the shutter?

    Chin Jin Phua, Mar 3, 2005
  8. Guest

    paul Guest

    As others said, the dust isn't a big issue. It's only visible in very
    high f/stop number shots. Lots of good solutions for doing it yourself
    once a year or so.

    The biggest issues are size, complexity, cost of necessary lenses and
    the lack of live LCD preview. Consider that you will want to have a
    collection of expensive lenses to get full performance. The kit lens has
    nice wide angle but very little telephoto & not spectacular macro, no
    image stabilization, not a particularly fast (low f number) lens, etc. I
    miss the live preview. In general the D70 is more demanding to operate.
    It does have auto settings but you will want to learn all the controls &
    shoot in raw and get sucked up into a pretty darn geeky technical hobby.
    That's a lot different from point & shoot. Not only is the body bigger &
    heavier but when you start craving more lenses, the nice ones can be
    HUGE. Are you willing to get into all that?
    paul, Mar 3, 2005
  9. Guest

    paul Guest

    With DSLR's you have to hold the camera to your eye and don't see the
    image until after it's been shot. I used to love the live preview on the
    LCD of my P&S. So easy to see the exposure & composition as I move
    things around. But the DSLR viewfinder is easier to see detail, I used
    to miss little things that couldn't be seen in the LCD like a piece of
    trash in the corner.
    paul, Mar 3, 2005
  10. Guest

    Nick Beard Guest

    Hey!! Who you callin a Geek!! :)))
    Nick Beard, Mar 3, 2005
  11. So, what exactly is the LCD on DSLR for? Playing with menu and settings?
    Chin Jin Phua, Mar 3, 2005
  12. Guest

    paul Guest

    You can inspect the exposure after shooting, trial & error style. It is
    quite a different technique from live preview. Big difference.
    paul, Mar 3, 2005
  13. Dang. Thank you for clearing this up. I have been considering a DSLR to
    replace my P&S thinking that since it comes with the LCD, all the
    convenient features(live preview, AV priority, Spot metering) must be
    universal. I have had little success with film-SLR in my student's day due
    to limited skills and budget, i'd probably have to reconsider my decision
    since it didn't seem such a technological leap in terms of features from
    film-to-digital SLR.
    In another word, I see the quality of my pictures taken improved moving from
    P&S film to P&S digital because of certain features, but I am unlikely to
    see an improvement with SLR-DSLR with my current skill. Is that a fair
    statement to make?
    Chin Jin Phua, Mar 3, 2005
  14. Guest

    paul Guest

    The DSLR will push you to study & learn more technique so it could
    improve your skills in that way. I'm not familiar with high end P&S
    cameras but DSLRs have lots of easily accessible manual controls. My old
    P&S was impractical to adjust things manually, the DSLR is easier to
    adjust. The optical viewfinder is very nice, it's just completely
    different from LCD shooting. You can get better results but it takes
    more work to actually keep track of shutter, aperture, ISO, check the
    histogram on the LCD after, more work converting RAW files, larger
    files, more expensive lenses. If you don't want all that, the P&S is a
    better choice.
    paul, Mar 3, 2005
  15. Guest

    Frank ess Guest

    <snippage has occurred>
    <snip Graham's cogent summary>

    I suggest you take his analysis to heart: he hasn't missed anything of
    importance that I can think of.

    I will say this: With all the research and generously shared experience
    and advice, you may select the wrong camera. The template may fulfill
    your intellectual requirements perfectly, but once it is in your hands
    you may discover it just plain doesn't fit.

    Unless you can find an accommodating local seller, or convince a
    well-supplied friend to let you work through his arsenal, it may be a
    long, expensive process to arrive at the best compromise.

    For my part, I have had to pay the price, but with great joy: the
    process has been fun and rewarding and I don't view mistakes or
    alternate choices as reflective of character flaws, in contrast to some
    folks you might encounter hereabouts.

    First significant choice: Nikon CP5700. I liked the idea of a
    long-lens/small-package made by a trusted company. It worked fine, and I
    even learned to compensate to a degree for the dreaded shutter lag.
    Several of the necessary skills and a bunch of luck (and attempts) let
    me bring home some good shots among 600 or so from the 2003 Monterey
    Historic Automobile Races.

    Next try: Added the Nikon CP5000 on recommendation of a professional who
    at that time did all his digital work with one. I became addicted to its
    19mm equivalent wide angle (with .68x convertor). a good choice, for

    And then: More Pixels Mania. Nikon CP8700, just in time for the 2004
    Historics. Once again persistence and luck paid off with a few good

    Finally, to the dSLR: First and most important, I no longer feel as if I
    am fighting the equipment to get the results I know it can return. With
    the utility comes responsibility: the photographer can't blame poor
    product on the camera. Second, I _know_ the camera-lens combination is
    capable of doing the best possible work in its class; once again, no
    excuses, what comes out can be top-of-the line. Luck is still a factor,
    but definitely a less influential one.

    Take into account the images you see are made by a photographer whose
    pleasures come as much from the process as from the products. I don't
    mind showing rejects and also-rans although I understand and appreciate
    the attitude of those who advocate never letting anyone see anything but
    your best. I think I am a photographer, just not a totally professional

    I still own and enjoy using the non-interchangeable-lens cameras, and
    after lugging the 20D and lenses around, especially appreciate their
    compact and maneuverable nature. They will put out quality photos, good
    enough for almost anyone's needs, and beyond most folks' desires. They
    are easy to operate for most folks' purposes, and are capable of

    The 20D and all dSLRs I know about Increase the likelihood of excellent
    output. They do so at the cost of Bulk, Price, Ease-of-use/Convenience,
    and Subtlety. You are going to pay, one way or another, for advanced
    features and topnotch output.

    The reality of lens-changes in the field is probably less onerous in
    fact than in psychological terms, excluding the obvious but rare
    circumstances (sandstorms, hurricanes, freefall excursions, _etc._). The
    one thing I hate about dSLRs is the inevitable moment when the perfect
    shot is imminent and the wrong lens is on the body. A quarter-century
    ago my gesture at solving this problem was carrying more than one
    body-lens-film combination, primed and ready. It was easier then,
    comparable Canon items being smaller than current (85-300 excepted) and
    less expensive. It didn't always work. I missed the shot of a lifetime
    when fully-equipped and in the right place:

    " ... one of the best-ever photos that got away, pictures that I didn't
    get because of one deficit or another in my repertoire of photographer
    behavior: at an early- or mid-80s IMSA event (maybe) I was walking past
    the open Goodyear garage toward the 76 station. I had cruised the
    paddock/garage area once and was expecting to go to my car and out to
    the edge of the course. I was not ready to take a picture, although I
    had two loaded cameras hanging on my body.

    "Around the corner of the station office came a side-by-side pair of
    instantly recognizable and fully suited drivers: eighteen, nineteen, or
    twenty years old, they were Michael Andretti on the left, and Al Unser,
    Junior, on the right. They were very intent, leaning in toward one
    another as they walked. Michael was telling Al Jr. about an on-track
    adventure, saying something like, ' ... so I had to give it one of these
    .... ' He reared back and demonstrated by extending his arms, gripping an
    imaginary steering wheel, and whipping his hands back and forth in small
    arcs. Al Jr. nodded understanding. I gaped.

    "By the time I got a camera up, they were just two guys walking away.
    Kids. Pretending to be race drivers. Only, they were race drivers. Ow."

    Any road, be prepared to enjoy the search and decision-making, don't
    regard your choice as a wedding vow, and beware the influence of Dreaded
    Cognitive Dissonance: it makes grown people throw hissy fits, ordinary
    folks rabid, and leaves a bad taste in everyone's experience.
    Frank ess, Mar 3, 2005
  16. Guest

    Keith Guest

    The Olympus E-1 and E300 both have an automated cleaning system that
    cleans the sensor everytime you switch on the camera, takes decent
    pictures too!
    Keith, Mar 3, 2005
  17. Guest

    Owamanga Guest

    One of the windshield wipers got stuck on my Oly E-1, and I kept on
    forgetting to re-fill the sensor-cleaning fluid reservoir (it's too
    small really) so I swapped it for a D70.

    Cleaning dust of the D70 sensor is easy - just give the camera a good
    shake every morning. That does the trick.

    Owamanga, Mar 3, 2005
  18. Guest

    Nick Beard Guest

    "You know it makes sense Rodney"
    Nick Beard, Mar 3, 2005
  19. Guest

    Ben Thomas Guest

    My first few photos from my new D70 had dust spots. :(

    Ben Thomas, Mar 3, 2005
  20. Guest

    bj286 Guest

    Big difference between film and digital, you can review your digital
    capture immediately and make adjustments and learn.

    Live preview is not important. Immediate review is very important.

    Live preview is not the same as the capture at all. Since the preview
    has to be moving, the shutter speed, sensitivity and aperture of the
    preview is very different from the actual capture.
    bj286, Mar 3, 2005
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