Hey everyone, I'm new here and I need some help. I have a D7100 I love and some cash burning a hole in my pocket. I want to preorder a D810 but I can't decide what lens or lenses to purchase with the body. I have a some DX lenses, a 300 f4 and a 50 f1.8 already. My budget is the body plus 2300 dollars. This puts some really excellent f2.8 lenses within my range or some Sigma Art series plus something else. Someone help me, spend my money!
Edit: almost forgot I primarily shoot landacapes, wildlife and concerts. As I read that I realize that doesn't help much.
I will also assume that the DX lenses that you listed above are actually FX lenses.
You have three different subjects. I will comment on the first that I shoot, landscapes:
I would buy the 20 and 28 in my signature. You will note that they are manual focus. There are auto-focus versions but you don't need them and the manual focus lenses have far superior metal construction - they are the pinnacle of Nikon's manufacturing art.
You don't need auto-focus for landscapes because you are "typically" going to shoot between f/5.6 and f/11 - faster for the 28, slower for the 20 where these lenses perform best and focus on the hyperfocal point. You will then buy step up rings to 77 (you will need two) and some nice ND filters (ideally a 3, 5 and 10 stop). You can then standardize all your lenses on this. If you think that you are going to buy an important lens with a larger filter size, you might want to standardize on that size.
I have just spent about $2,000 of your money.
Another option is the 14-24 in my signature. However, if you want to use filters for that, you need a special filter kit and you will likely be spending another $1,000 (in addition to $2,000 on the lenses) and you will still not have glass filters that also will not be compatible with your other lenses. Did I mention triple the weight?
The 14-24 has superior optics at 2.8, but at 5.6 to 11 that you will be shooting for landscapes, they are the same, if not the 28 being superior (especially at 5.6).
One gotcha with the 20mm - it has some weird distortion that you will notice if you are shooting flat lines (ocean horizons and architecture say) that the 14-24 does not have. You will not notice the distortion otherwise. However, the 28 does not have this distortion and for landscapes with flat lines, I would typically use this one. You will notice it on some architecture - it does not matter to me because I use my 14-24 for that - the 14-24 is possibly the best architecture lens ever created barring the PC lenses.
I will let others comment on the other two subjects. I am sure that I could steer you in the right direction, but you will appreciate advice from people that actually shoot these subjects.
With the 28, you can get shots like these:
landscapes Nikon 16-35 f/4G ED VR
wildlife and concerts Nikon 80-400mm AF-S FX VR G ED N
You have a 300 f/4, so if you shoot it with your D810 you can use it in FX or DX modes, handily covering the long end. This should cover off wildlife, compressed landscapes, and the ISO gods willing, concerts from a distance.
So I wouldn't buy a long lens (your budget doesn't allow an upgrade to a modern super telephoto).
There is definitely a gap at the wide end, but here it gets tricky because a well shot pano can compensate for (and sometimes exceed the abilities of) a purpose-built lens. If you like panos, and if they fit your landscape style.
Personally, I find that when I shoot with my 14-24 it's for crazy ultra-wide effects, not so much for traditional landscapes. I'm more than happy at >24mm for landscapes.
If I were you, I'd look at the gamut of modern wide lenses and choose something like the Sigma 35 f/1.4 Art, taking advantage of its versatility and sharpness for my fancy new 810 sensor (wide low light for concerts, relatively low focal length distortion for panos, environmental portraits, etc.). And it's cheap as chips (relatively).
With the leftover $1,500 in cash I'd take a week off work and go somewhere to shoot, getting to know my new camera and lenses.
The other alternative, and the toughest choice to make, would be to get your 810 and shoot with it for a month or two with your existing lenses and see what focal length you're missing or relying on. Then, either fill the gaps or upgrade a lens you have to a higher quality alternate.
So hard to do with $2,300 burning a hole in your pocket...
... And no time to use them.
Landacapes/wildlife: 24-120vr F/4, 16-35vr, 70-200vr f4
Concerts: 28mm 1.8, 35mm 1.8, 85mm 1.8G (you have your 50 already.)
With that you would be set for years to come and ready for the next FX body or when the prices fall.
Then, for longer, 85mm f/1.8G, 70-200mm f/2.8 VRII, and so on. The new Sigma 50mm f/1.4 would also work as a "longer" lens in crop mode, but I do not have that one….yet.
A versatile carry around might be the 24-120mm f/4 VR, although it has its limitations. It is the lens Nikon shows in the D800E Instruction Manual…….for whatever that is worth…...
I have a feeling that this is not your first rodeo, take a deep breath and invest in good glass.
Lastly, I hope you have a good study tripod system, if not, then WestendBoy and I have some great recommendation that we know will be a great investment....for a life time of photography.
Then turn around and get a D810 + 70-200 2.8 for your concert and event work? If you think you could live with primes for the concern work, maybe the 35mm 1.8 + 85mm 1.8?
If one is making a living on their work, D800/810 no question. If not, what is the "real" increase that $2,000 gains one? Landscape shooting one should be using a tripod and shooting at native ISOs. It is very hard to distinguish various bodies at ISO 400 on down and the gains are few. Wildlife and Concerts are about higher ISOs. D800 is better, but a stack of fast primes will offset the stop or two gained by a FX sensor. And really, if concerts, low light type shooting is the majority, a D4/s or the DF would be better choices since they retain more dynamic range and color longer, and noise control is better.
My camera bodies have changed many times over but the lenses remain the same.
If you shoot the same object/view with a D800 and a D7100 on say 28 and18mm to match framing and go to 100% or even 200% on the same object in each you will have great difficulty to tell the difference.
BUT If you are going to get a prime, get something a zoom cannot compete with
24mm f1.4 G AF-S ED
400mm f2.8 AF-S E FL ED VR
I would like to say that as long as the AF issue is not present on the D800 that everybody suggests to get or you have some warranty go for that. Otherwise the D810 is the newest big boy in town. You will have more options vs the D610 they might be minor besides the sensor.
As for lens
While 35 is not very very wide the sigma 351.4 is great.
85mm 1.8g for concerts and crop (thanks to the sensor)
Otherwise the 70-200 2.8v2 will save you and you can still crop.
You have plenty of good advice here.
I choose the D800 over the d600 because of the viewfinder curtain, better body grip, sensor,
Shutter sync and 1/8000.
Now you may want to go to nikon's website and compare some bodies against each other to help you narrow it down.
My vote is for the D800 family
I also agree with Donaldjose that everything looks the same, when applied to the average consumer with an IPhone.
Not all glass is created equal.
but I have seen people abandon a new, quality VR zoom , for a used, dated, prime, as they have read, primes are better than zooms
For many people, a prime with mediocre image quality will be better than the latest professional zoom.
And strictly on image quality, some used, dated, primes are better than the new, quality VR zooms. The 85 1.4D and my own 135 DC 2.0 come to mind.