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Just getting started. DSLR advice?


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What kind of photography do you do?


If I were you I'd pick up a nice versatile modern zoom for photography. Could be a Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 VC (image stabilisation) for example. It will also work for video, but changing aperture is cumbersome and manual focus isn't perfect. Image stabilisation is a big plus though for handheld work.


If you do a lot of extreme wide angle photograhy, a Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 is very nice. Also for video. Changing focus and aperture are less of a big deal with extreme wide angle anyway.


You could combine this with some cheap manual focus AI lenses for video. All lenses you mention are available as earlier versions, the non autofocus lenses go much cheaper on eBay.


I wouldn't buy everything at once. Just start with a few lenses, see what you like and dislike, discover what you are missing.. (if you get a 17-50mm zoom you can figure out which focal length you like the most, maybe you love 35mm, so it's worth to invest in a Samyang 35mm 1.4 or a Nikkor AI 35mm 1.4 for example.. etc.


Same for rigs etc. Probably you have a tripod or monopod already... start with those. If you have a stabilized lens try using that for hand held shooting.

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Considering that D7100 is an APS-C crop camera, only the 20mm and 24mm would be considered wide angle.


The Tokina 11-16 mm is a superb wide lens. The Tokina 12-24 f/4 is another good lens that doesn't get mentioned as much. Only f/4, but I personally love the 12-24mm range, quite similar to the 17-35mm / 16-35mm lenses on fullframe.


Out of the wide ones, I'd recommend the 24mm, sharp and affordable.


The 35mm f/2 would be a really good normal lens in APS-C crop. 


I own both the 50mm f/1.4 AF-D and the 50mm f/1.8 AF-D. I really have a hard time justifying the f/1.4 over the f/1.8 lens. The price difference between those lenses are better spent on other photo/video equipment really.


Had it been me: 

- 24 + 35mm + 50mm f/1.8 had been my set of primes.

- If I needed to go very wide and needed the best performance, the Tokina 11-16 had been my choice. Had I found it more versatile to have the range of 12-24mm for what I'm doing, I would have gone for that one. Not as good as the Nikons that cover that range, but not as pricy and yet not a bad lens.



Before my upgrade to full frame, my most used APS-C lenses were:

- 35mm f/1.8G,

- 50mm f/1.8 AF-D

- Tokina 12-24 f/4.


I barely used my 17-50 f/2.8 Tamron for stills: I preferred the Tokina for the wide end, and the 35mm & 50mm performed better at the focal lengths where I would have used the Tamron. For video I found the Tamron nice.

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Here's a cheap rig that is compact and inexpensive. It doesn't include rails like a typical rig, but I find that it does the job and for $50, you can toss it if you don't like it. (Make sure you add counterweighting to it, like you would with any good rig.)




Also, take a good monopod with you, too. I like to switch between rigs and monopods, depending on how quickly the action is moving.


Also, if you are doing documentary-style shooting (on a boat), you almost always want a zoom lens that has some kind of stabilization. Zoom for composition options on the run. And stabilization, because you'll need it, especially when you are zoomed-in.


Only get a prime if the shallow depth of field is the aesthetic you want. You'll be getting plenty of natural light, so it doesn't have to be the fastest lens. The Tamron 24-70 VC sounds like it might be a good fit for you. And the Tokina 11-16 mm, if you need wide.

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I have the D7100, D600, and D800. I sold my 5D2

I also have a V1 that I prefer over the NEX and GH cameras.


Someone suggested the Sony A77, why not the A99 with it's swivel screen and many other feaures?

I personally prefer my D800 for still images and Video.


As for the D7100, I've had the D5100 with it's usefull swivel LCD,

but the higher resolution and larger size of the D7100 live view screen beats it for me.

Besides, when I shoot video, I use an external monitor that mounts on my tripod.

I can swivel the camera 360 degrees while viewing the output on my CaMax HD 5.6" screen

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I am very surprised that the D7100 has no 60fps option listed in their manual.

The settings allow you to shoot 1280x720 at 60P


As for 1080P at 60fps, nice to have but would you ever use it?

The V1 can do full resolution burst at 60fps or record video at 1080i

I tried it but never use it.


I record 1080P at 30fps and then convert to DVD and sometimes BlueRay with PowerDirector 11.

99.9% of the time the 720P DVDs are viewed instead of the 1080P BluRay disc.

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