D5 is dead; get a D6 or transition to mirrorless?

DinusaurDinusaur Posts: 2Member
After 5 years of continuous use my D5 got some water damage recently and Nikon is not going to repair it. Their suggestion is to get a D6. I am debating whether this is a good time to transition to mirrorless. I was hoping that my D5 would last until Nikon was out with their Z9. Unfortunately it is nowhere in the horizon and I need to capture Osprey actions in summer months. I have a D810 that I can still use with all my Nikon lenses; this means going back to where I was 5 years ago in capturing action photos. Nikon's current Z7 is not in the same class as D5 or D6. So I am thinking of adding a Sony A1 with 200-600mm in my bird photography kit. It will be lighter than my usual combo of D5 and 500mm f4+1.4tx and will still get a good reach. I can then make decision later whether to get rid of all of my Nikon gears or get their Z9 body when it comes out for making use of my existing Nikon lenses. I wonder if anybody in this forum has gone through such a dilemma or contemplating to switch for one reason or another. Or is best for me to get D6 and use for another 5 years, unfortunately as I grow older the my Nikon prime lenses are getting heavier and heavier. My main interest is bird photography, stationary and in flight. Here's my D5 album on Flickr where I put some photos to give you an idea what I do as hobby.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/60250038@N02/albums/72157719362555077

Comments

  • Capt_SpauldingCapt_Spaulding Posts: 596Member
    Wish I could help with your quest, but it and the quality of your images are beyond me. Very, very nice work.
  • NSXTypeRNSXTypeR Posts: 2,209Member
    Wow, your work is awesome! Shame to hear about your D5. Have you ever thought about maybe getting a D500? I know it's a little smaller and definitely not full frame, but it would give you a good deal of reach with your primes and maybe it would make your pack a bit lighter?

    I guess you could think about used sales on some people who may be jumping ship to Z cameras. If you can score a low shutter count D500 or D5, you could potentially be shooting for quite some time.

    Good luck on the camera hunt. I'm no pro, but I don't think moving to Sony cameras is a good idea as that's a lot of potential gear to shift. I don't know why Nikon would not repair your D5 if you're a willing and paying customer, but that seems about on par for Nikon, they don't seem to have great customer service.

    Best of luck again!
    Nikon D7000/ Nikon D40/ Nikon FM2/ 18-135 AF-S/ 35mm 1.8 AF-S/ 105mm Macro AF-S/ 50mm 1.2 AI-S
  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 3,536Member
    You have very nice work. I suppose if I was in your position, I would use my D810 until the Z9 comes out. You would definitely hone your focussing skills.
  • PistnbrokePistnbroke Posts: 2,280Member
    Independent repair shop for your D5?
  • spraynprayspraynpray Posts: 6,430Moderator
    Water damage does tend to make cameras beyond economical repair so Nikon's attitude is understandable. If the D500 suggested above (economical stop-gap solution) is not what you want, maybe you could either get a D850 or buy a used D5?
    Always learning.
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 4,366Member
    edited June 6
    I’d say get a Sony or Canon, no way the Z9 will match what the others are doing if past history is anything to go by. Not to mention native telephoto lenses being available, vs on a roadmap, which will come, out someday. Even if you can order a Z9 when it comes out it could be a long time before it gets in your hands anyway. You could be waiting till the end of the year or longer, given the current supply issues.
    Post edited by PB_PM on
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • MrFotoFoolMrFotoFool Posts: 211Member
    This is my two cents, but of course you will have to weigh all the opinions posted and decide what's best for you.

    It may be worth a try as @Pistnbroke said to send the D5 to an indepent repair shop. I strongly recommend Tucson Camera Repair in my city, which is also an authorized Nikon dealer.

    For an alternate setup I echo what @NSXTypeR says about the D500. I have two D850 bodies (my favorites) that I pair with shorter lenses, but for birds and distant wildlife I use a D500 with the 500 f/5.6 PF lens. The crop factor gives equivalent view of 750mm and the PF lens is much easier to handle than your beastly 500 f4 (though of course that's a stellar lens if you can handle it).

    In wanting to go lighter I rented a Canon R5 and their collapsing 70-200 f2.8 . I took about a dozen pictures with it and shipped it back because I HATED it. The ergonomics are way off - the body is too small for the lenses (all mirrorless have this problem). If you are coming from a larger gripped body (D5) I can't imagine any current mirrorless will satisfy you. Also the electronic viewfinder was hideous. If you are considering the switch I would STRONGLY urge you to rent the setup you are considering before you make the leap.
  • DinusaurDinusaur Posts: 2Member
    Thanks everybody for leaving comments and suggestions. I tried two independent repair shops around Toronto, Canada area and both refused to work on it citing that Nikon has stopped supplying parts to them a year ago. So I sent the camera to Nikon and they advised me that it cannot be repaired and suggested to get a D6, they offered me a slight rebate. Anyway, it is a lot of money to fork out so I am going to do more research and decide which way to go. As @MrFotoFool suggested I should try my hands on a new setup for test before committing to it. Cheers.
  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 3,536Member

    This is my two cents, but of course you will have to weigh all the opinions posted and decide what's best for you.

    It may be worth a try as @Pistnbroke said to send the D5 to an indepent repair shop. I strongly recommend Tucson Camera Repair in my city, which is also an authorized Nikon dealer.

    For an alternate setup I echo what @NSXTypeR says about the D500. I have two D850 bodies (my favorites) that I pair with shorter lenses, but for birds and distant wildlife I use a D500 with the 500 f/5.6 PF lens. The crop factor gives equivalent view of 750mm and the PF lens is much easier to handle than your beastly 500 f4 (though of course that's a stellar lens if you can handle it).

    In wanting to go lighter I rented a Canon R5 and their collapsing 70-200 f2.8 . I took about a dozen pictures with it and shipped it back because I HATED it. The ergonomics are way off - the body is too small for the lenses (all mirrorless have this problem). If you are coming from a larger gripped body (D5) I can't imagine any current mirrorless will satisfy you. Also the electronic viewfinder was hideous. If you are considering the switch I would STRONGLY urge you to rent the setup you are considering before you make the leap.

    I am hopeful that the Z9 will not fall into this small size trap and that seems to be confirmed with the development announcement. My Z 7ii bodies are only useful as a serious camera with the grips. I don't have the grip on one body that I have an FTZ permanently attached to, but that is not "serious" work, just fun screwing around with my AIS and D lenses using MF.
  • mhedgesmhedges Posts: 2,092Member
    Really nice work! You just got yourself a follow :)

    If at all possible I'd at least see what the Z9 can do before switching to another system. Nikon has been fairly aggressive (by their standards) in their statements as far as it's performance. I'd be very surprised if it isn't competitive with what else is out there.

    As far as the A1 - very nice camera for sure but ergonomically I can't see it matching up with a camera with a built in grip. There were some pictures posted comparing it to Z9 and R3 and really it was pretty sad.

    Agree with the other folks on the D500. They are kind of hard to find new though. D850 may also be a decent choice for the interim.
  • photobunnyphotobunny Posts: 385Member
    In your shoes I would go for a used D850 and grip as you already surely still have D5 batteries to give the magic sauce on giving that 9FPS until the Z9 comes out. Even when the Z9 comes out it still gives you a great backup camera.

    If switching systems, the only sensible option is Canon with the R3. Sony only have a 400 f/2.8 and 600 f/4.0. Canon have way more wildlife lenses now and have some interesting ones on the horizon like a very respectably rumoured 200-500mm f/4.0 TC. Sony are likely going to continue to shove out sub 200mm lenses as those appeal to their user base.
  • DenverShooterDenverShooter Posts: 389Member
    As someone who has D6 and shoots 2K to 3K images per event with it (usually with the Nikon 800 mm f/5.6 or the Nikon 180mm to 400mm f/4) let me give you my "two cents worth".

    You can't go wrong with a D6.

    The mirrorless gear might get there in a couple more generations but in my opinion it's not there yet.

    Too much latency in the VF for fast moving objects.

    Limited VF dynamic range.

    Poor battery life.

    Buy the D6 and in 4 or 5 years the Z9 MKII or MKIII will probably address most of those issues.

    As always YMMV.

    Denver Shooter
  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 3,536Member
    Actually, I have to agree with DenverShooter. Get some more mileage on your f-mount lenses with a mount optimized for them.

    DenverShooter, thank you for that dose of common sense.
  • MrFotoFoolMrFotoFool Posts: 211Member
    No D6 in Nikon USA refurbished as of now, but they have a refurbished D5 for 1500 less than the cost of a new D6. They also have a refurbished D4s that surprisingly is five hundred more than the refurfbished D5!
  • snakebunksnakebunk Posts: 973Member
    I am a bird photographer using a D810, so if I was in your camera situation I would be in my own. If my D810 broke now I would get a D850. My mirrorless plan for the future is to wait until the market is more mature. Currently I think Canon is looking good, but it will be clearer in five years or so. Not buying anything is often a good option :).
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