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Nikon D3200 two lenses kit

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#1 m00nless

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Posted 13 October 2013 - 12:08 PM

I am tempted by the Nikon D3200 with two lenses (18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR and 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR) camera kit. If I only use the two lenses for piggy-back exposures of 30 sec and process images later on a computer is there a reason not to consider this kit?

#2 Falcon-

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Posted 13 October 2013 - 12:32 PM

As far as I know the D3200 can not be controlled via tethering from a computer (the same being true of other D3x00 models). Now I know that is not actually in your list of what you plan to do, but that lack will seriously limit you if you wish to expand beyond the 30s manually-focused and manually-triggered AP you talked about. The 5x00 or 7x00 Nikons do not have that ability disabled so they would be a better option, or jumping brands the Canon 1100D (T3) is inexpensive but does allow tethered shooting.

I should not that this is not a mark against the image quality of the D3200, just against the usability for long exposure AP due to Nikon's method of market differentiation. :(

So ignoring the one missing feature of the D3200 the use of those two kit lenses should work out reasonably well. Prime lenses tend to be sharper then zoom lenses, but those two lenses do reasonably well regardless (or at least I know for sure the Canon 18-55 kit lens does, so I assume the Nikon one performs similarly). You will need to run slightly stopped down on both of them for best results rather then running with the aperture wide-open. For example running the 18-55 @ 18mm and f/4.5 or f/5.6 shows significantly less distortion of the stars at the edges then running wide open (f/3.5) does. This need to stop down is true of all but a few expensive lenses. I am only guessing here about the 55-300 as I have no experience with it, but I would expect a small amount of chromatic aberration to show, but likely an acceptable amount given the price.

My early AP work was done with a similar class of lenses - now these are not really good for a valid comparison as they are not the same lenses, but at least it kinda-sorta gives you an example of the quality from lenses of this price-range... here is my early work with a Canon EF 28-90mm f/4-5.6 and Canon EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III

In any case, no mater what camera or lenses you get, have fun trying out piggyback AP! :grin:

#3 nofxrx

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Posted 13 October 2013 - 05:44 PM

Whatever you do do NOT buy a D5200 or D7100 as they use a new sensor by Toshiba that has horrible amp glow in long exposures...especially once modified.

The D3200 does not use the Toshiba sensor, but most likely the same Sony sensor that is in the Sony a77/NEX-7/etc..
so I would THINK that the D3200 is safe from this issue...But do mot quote me on that as I have ZERO experience with the 3200 FIRST HAND...(But DO with the 5200 and 7100)

However, like Sean mentioned there are better options.

I for one would be VERY hard pressed to find anything better than the D5100 or D7000, which both use a brilliant low noise Sony sensor. And have been PROVEN strongly by this very community...

The kit lenses are decent for casual shooting, but NOT for AP...
You should REALLY look at the 35mm F1'8G and/or 50/1.8G, and/or the 85/1.8D a these will blow any kit lens, or zoom lens out if the water with image quality...hands down. Primes will always be king in image quality..and SO is one obsession that puts our tools/equipment to very hard scrutiny, and 99% of zoom lenses will not live up to our standards

Just fyi, an IMHO

An of course, only relevant if you go with Nikon.. ;)

Good luck!

#4 Planemo

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Posted 13 October 2013 - 09:42 PM

Whatever you do do NOT buy a D5200 or D7100 as they use a new sensor by Toshiba that has horrible amp glow in long exposures...especially once modified.

So how long an exposure does it take for the amp glow to show up? I've been considering getting a D7100 for normal photography as it gets great reviews for that but might be tempted to try some short AP with it. My D40 will get some glow but it takes 10 min. or more to get bad.

#5 m00nless

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Posted 13 October 2013 - 11:11 PM

Why do I have to use a software for longer than 30 sec exposures if I can use a remote control or a cable release? I am assuming that I could use one of these with the D3200?

#6 ccs_hello

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Posted 13 October 2013 - 11:19 PM

D3200 is using a Nikon designed 24 Mpxl CMOS image sensor: NC81369R

However, it ranked very high under DxOmark.
Unable to tether would be a big set-back.

Clear Skies!

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#7 TxStars

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 01:45 AM

If you want to computer control the imaging process you will need an adapter like this.
"Shoestring astronomy" Nikon ML-L3 adapter.
http://www.store.sho...products_ds.htm

If you dont want computer control you can use the standard IR remote and hold the button down while it is poined at the front of the camera for the length of each exposure.
Or get an IR intervalometer and atach it in front of the camera.

#8 nofxrx

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 12:22 PM

Whatever you do do NOT buy a D5200 or D7100 as they use a new sensor by Toshiba that has horrible amp glow in long exposures...especially once modified.

So how long an exposure does it take for the amp glow to show up? I've been considering getting a D7100 for normal photography as it gets great reviews for that but might be tempted to try some short AP with it. My D40 will get some glow but it takes 10 min. or more to get bad.


Well from my tests the 5200 showed amp glow that covered nearly the entire frame at ~2-3 min at ISO1600...to get amp glow free images you would probably have to keep it at less than 1min at ISO 400 or ~30-45sec at ISO800..

Just a guess though as I only tested at ISO1600 and above and the glow was so bad it covered nearly the entire sensor..
But, this was with a Full Spectrum Mod.
With a Baader mod you MIGHT get 2x those figures..

And FWIW I could not find the source if the glow...like the card read/write LED, or Live View ,etc....so I think it is actually part of the sensor output electronics, external to the actual sensor (which is why the Baader mod showed less signs)...


Make sense? ;)


FWIW the D7100 IS a phenomenal daytime camera... having that AF system in a crop body, which means it covers nearly the entire FOV, is simply amazing.
It is not so great at very high ISO and low light imaging, with regards to noise performance (probably due to the small pixels), but for decently lit situations you can be hard pressed to find a better Nikon model for the $$
But, having said that I would muuuuch rather pay an extra $400-500 and get the D600's...now THAT is a low light high ISO killer!!! I will glAdly give up some speed and the superior AF system for the D600's image quality..
Just IMHO an my two :penny:'s :)

Good luck!

#9 ccs_hello

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 04:36 PM

D600's sensor is back to SONY: IMX128.

Flip-flops, tick-tocks.

Clear Skies!

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#10 ccs_hello

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 04:39 PM

Re: Nikon ML-L3 adapter

Tethered shooting has far more features exposed than just a simple shutter-remote cable.

However, D3200 using WU-1a (which is a PTP/IP over WiFi bridge) for WiFi tether is very helpful.

Clear Skies!

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#11 nofxrx

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 08:56 PM

D600's sensor is back to SONY: IMX128..


Exactly my point.
Seems TO ME that the Nikon's with Sony sensors have proven to be the best for AP, and for daytime as well (IMHO)..
i.e. D50/D70s/D40x/D200/D600/D5100/D7000/etc..






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