Still choices

I first posted this as a comment over on Bob’s new Daynotes Journal, but I’m going for more feedback.

dSLR cameras … I’m teetering on the brink of moving up to dSLR, and frankly I don’t want to go in at the entry level. I figure I’ll outgrow a beginner dSLR long before its useful lifespan, and I’m a reasonably quick study.

Right now, I’m interested (I think) in one of these two configurations:

Nikon D7000 body with two lenses

    • Nikon 35mm f/1.8G AF-S DX Lens
    • Nikon 55-200mm f/4-5.6G ED IF AF-S DX VR

Pentax K-5 body with two lenses

    • Pentax 21987 DA 35mm f/2.4 AL Lens
    • Pentax DA 50-200mm f/4-5.6 ED Lens

I’m leaning towards the Nikon, but I’m interested in contrary opinions and lense recommendations. I could always go for the kit lenses to start, and add a 35mm prime later. Note that I don’t have any legacy SLR gear, so there’s nothing to keep me from picking any particular brand.

I will probably get extra batteries, memory cards, etc. But the big stuff I can use advice on.

Bob said (in part):

I’d suggest you buy more on features than on brand, but even there these three are pretty competitive. Do consider features that are still not universal, such as live-view, XDR, and so on. Also, I’d start with the standard kit lens (18-to-55mm or whatever) and the 50-to-200mm telephoto zoom. Between those two, you should be well covered. And, although 35mm is pretty much what 50mm used to be on 35mm SLRs, most people who want a fast lens find that a fast short telephoto is more useful. For example, I had a 50mm f/1.4 “normal” lens for my 35mm Pentax SLRs, but I found the 85mm f/1.8 to be much more useful for low-light shooting. It also makes an excellent “portrait” lens.

I can buy the body-only D7000 and the Nikon 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6G AF-S ED VR II together for only about $300 more than the D7000 with the kit lens, since there’s a $250 discount on the lens when purchased with the camera. That’s a good deal, and I might still go for the 35mm for indoor/low light work since it’s a lot faster.

I’m heading back to dpreview for more research, and look at comparable Canon’s too.

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I am who I am, there's plenty of data on this site to tell you more. Briefly, I'm a husband, computer geek, avid reader, gardener, and builder of furniture.

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