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Author Topic: DX or not DX  (Read 3351 times)

Offline magicrhodes

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DX or not DX
« on: September 21, 2009, 10:17:04 AM »
I have a Nikon D40 which I am reasonably happy with, I am considering purchasing the 35mm prime lens for it. However I am considering purchasing a new body next year probably a D5000. This leads me to my questions will my current lenses work with this body essentially does a DX lens work including AF on a non DX body?

Am I better off putting the £200 or so quid towards a new camera rather than buying a new lens for the D40?
Am I heading off down a one way street if I continue to buy DX lenses which will eventually leave me with a load of useless equipment in a few years time? (Flake on dcmag once said that Nikon's use of DX was not responsible, then again she did appear to hate Nikon.)




Offline Chris P

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Re: DX or not DX
« Reply #1 on: September 21, 2009, 10:49:04 AM »
The D5000 is a DX body so all your DX lenses you use on your D40 would work exactly the same on a D5000.

I'd also recommend the 35mm f/1.8 - it's a cracking lens.

Offline Jonathan

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Re: DX or not DX
« Reply #2 on: September 21, 2009, 10:56:17 AM »
What Chris said.  But also, yes DX lenses work on FF but they crop the centre section of the sensor.  Everything else works but my loverly D3 stops down to 5MP.  Which is about where phones are now (well, kind of).

Oh and the 35 / 1.8 may be nice.  But the Sigma 30 / 1.4 is really nice.

Here's snap with a full frame using a DX lens.



(Oh and Flickr's TOS say I should tell you about their fabulous website too.)
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Offline magicrhodes

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Re: DX or not DX
« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2009, 11:27:23 AM »
Jonathan,

Love that photo.. how did you get the almost circular effect on the sky???

Also is the Sigma one cheaper????

Offline John Doyle2

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Re: DX or not DX
« Reply #4 on: September 21, 2009, 11:51:29 AM »
Non DX Nikkor Lenses will work fine on Nikon and Fuji DSLR DX bodies :tup: and DX Lenses will work on the NIkon FF bodies albeit with a reduction in pixies!

Offline Jonathan

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Re: DX or not DX
« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2009, 12:13:31 PM »
Love that photo.. how did you get the almost circular effect on the sky???

Thanks :).  That's a 10.5 fisheye tilted upwards.  Just like it says not to in the manual.

I think the Sigma is dearer than the Nikon.  Nice lens though.
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Offline greypoint

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Re: DX or not DX
« Reply #6 on: September 21, 2009, 12:27:25 PM »
Personally if I was upgrading from a D40 I'd go for something like the D90 which give you AF on, almost, all Nikon fit  AF lenses rather than having to rely on AF-S lenses.

Offline magicrhodes

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Re: DX or not DX
« Reply #7 on: September 21, 2009, 12:29:50 PM »
Non DX Nikkor Lenses will work fine on Nikon and Fuji DSLR DX bodies :tup: and DX Lenses will work on the NIkon FF bodies albeit with a reduction in pixies!

I thought that non DX lenses would not auto focus on a DX body? ???

Offline Jonathan

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Re: DX or not DX
« Reply #8 on: September 21, 2009, 02:08:18 PM »
Non DX Nikkor Lenses will work fine on Nikon and Fuji DSLR DX bodies :tup: and DX Lenses will work on the NIkon FF bodies albeit with a reduction in pixies!

I thought that non DX lenses would not auto focus on a DX body? ???

Welcome to the crazy world of Nikon lens nomenclature......

Nikon use 2 different focusing systems: AF-S and the other one.  The other one is screw drive from a motor in the camera body.  AF-S has a motor embedded in the lens.  The D40 and SOME other more recent bodies don't have a focus motor in the camera so they can't autofocus a lens unless it's an AF-S.  Just to make things easier, Sigma aren't allowed to call their AF-S lenses AF-S so they call them HSM.  Some that focus the other way are called AF-D (and I bet several are AF-G).  Others aren't.  AF-G is an AF-D without the aperture ring.

DX means "can't fill the entire "sensor" on 35mm film sized sensors.  Some of them can be AF-S and some can be AF-D.  They could also be AF but I don't think any are.

Confused yet?

Some non DX lenses will focus on some DX bodies.  And some won't.  It's all very simple :)
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Offline magicrhodes

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Re: DX or not DX
« Reply #9 on: September 21, 2009, 03:16:59 PM »
So non AF-S lens will not autofocus on a D40... Right

Having read the blurb on the Nikon site it would appear that the D5000 is optimised for AF-S which I gather to mean all my D40 equipment would work fine on it... which is good!

Offline greypoint

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Re: DX or not DX
« Reply #10 on: September 21, 2009, 04:16:32 PM »
Lens wise the D5000 would be exactly the same as the D40 in compatability - ie AF-S HSM. If you could stretch to a D90 there's the option of 1000s of older second hand lenses. Just a thought 8)

Offline chris@seary.com

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Re: DX or not DX
« Reply #11 on: September 22, 2009, 11:54:07 AM »
This gives the full story for Nikon lens compatibility:
http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/compatibility-lens.htm

Second-hand AF-D lenses will still be pretty pricey, so you won't save a lot of dosh in the long run by getting the D90.

Now that the AF-S, G and DX lens ranges have expanded, you're not short of glass to choose from for your camera. If you use wide aperture primes, then that will be the only shortcoming - most of these are AF-D and you will lose autofocus with them on D40/D5000, but otherwise they're fully functional. If you use zooms, then all of your needs will be catered for as regards the D40 and D5000, AF included.

If you go for older lenses than this (AI and AI-S), which are the real bargains, then the D90 won't give you any advantages over the D40 or D5000. No AF, no metering either. Just use the histogram.

In actual fact, the D40 gives the fullest lens compatibility of the Nikon range - you can fit the pre-AI lenses. Almost everything going back to 1959! This is because one of the 1980s era external couplings is not on the D40. Just a few exceptions with fisheyes that require a mirror lockup to fit.

I don't think that DX will go for a while - none of the manufacturers seem to be able to make a full frame camera that's smaller than a breeze block. If people want to obsess about how much better the image quality is, then they should really use 5"x4" sheet film.......

It's all about horses for courses.

Offline Jonathan

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Re: DX or not DX
« Reply #12 on: September 22, 2009, 12:32:12 PM »
Didn't look too hard at his definitive guide (reading Ken Rockwell for more than 3 minutes tends to make me violent) but I didn't see any mention of IX lenses.  Or (for completeness) those wacky AF lenses for the otherwise MF F3.

Don't put either of them in the same room as a DSLR.
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Offline greypoint

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Re: DX or not DX
« Reply #13 on: September 22, 2009, 12:41:33 PM »
Well I suppose it depends what sort of lenses you're after if it's more worthwhile getting a body that will give you AF with non AF-S lenses. Of the lenses I'm currently using only one is AF-S. The others were all purchased second hand and I think my Nikkor 70-210 AF-D for £90 and Tokina 400mm for around £200 cost me considerably less than the equivalent AF-S/HSM type lenses would have done - Sigma 17-70 for a round £150 was'nt bad either.

Offline chris@seary.com

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Re: DX or not DX
« Reply #14 on: September 22, 2009, 02:56:39 PM »
Totally agree Sue - I see what you mean now. Apologies for misconstruing.

The Ken Rockwell article isn't that bad, bearing in mind it was written by mad Ken. And yes, he is terribly irritating.

You've got to love Nikon - after being with Nikon for three years, I don't think I have a proper camera unless there's a two page matrix detailing what will fit what and what functionality it will give.

Canon are so boring - you just put anything made in the last twenty years on a camera, and it just works (EF-S excepted). Yawn.........

 

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