I Have The Best Wife In The World


Today is a big day. I think, if I’m remembering accurately, that the last time I made an impulse purchase for this amount of money was … never. But with my wonderful wife’s blessing (and her help in writing the title for this post), I have moved up to a Nikon D700, and a lens to match. We won’t be able to afford going out to dinner nearly as often this fall, but that’s just fine with me because I’ll be busy taking pictures.

It’s an amazing camera, the second-finest DSLR that Nikon makes today (after the D3, and there are actually a few firmware updates in the D700 that surpass the D3 at the moment, although the D3 is still superior in battery life, autofocus speed, and various other details). It uses the full-frame FX lenses, which means all of my lenses just became obsolete. They work on this camera just fine, but they don’t begin to take advantage of its capabilities, and they’re all effectively 50% longer/narrower because they’re mere DX lenses that send a smaller image to the CCD than the FX lenses do.

So I got the fanciest new lens Nikon makes, to go with it: the 14-24mm AF-S F2.8 ultra-wide angle zoom. This lens (above) has more glass in it than all of my other lenses combined, and it has an effective range of 9-16mm in DX terms. In other words, it’s actually wider than my trusty 10.5mm fisheye (example). It’s also super-sharp even in the far corners, at every aperture.

Two first impressions, having been using this combo for all of 10 minutes: it’s extremely heavy, and the shutter click is extremely loud. I’ll probably have more insightful observations with a bit more experience.

I’m still in shock. Time to RTFM, slowly and carefully. Thanks for four years of good times, Mr. D70, but it’s time for you to think about retirement.

And to all my Nikon DLSR-toting friends who have made me envious with their D80s and D300s in the last couple of years … who’s going to continue the arms race and be first to get a D3? Osrin? Orcmid? Nic? Hey, Greg in Sydney — it’s not too late to order a D3, I’ll be glad to receive it here in the states for you.


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