Nikon D70S...

This is a discussion on Nikon D70S... within the Digital Cameras, Lenses & Accessories forums, part of the PHOTO FORUM category; Hello everyone, An advertisement regarding used Nikon D70S is for sell here from my local web (Malaysia). I called the seller and fixed a meeting ...


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Thread: Nikon D70S...

  1. #1
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    Nikon D70S...

    Hello everyone,

    An advertisement regarding used Nikon D70S is for sell here from my local web (Malaysia). I called the seller and fixed a meeting and to check myself this particular DSLR this Sunday (5thFeb2012). I know its an old camera from 2005 which its first launched... that is not a problem.

    My concern,
    1> Since this DSLR are used, what must I check?
    2> What are the the original kitlens which come out from box with this D70S body?
    3> OK, I read a lot of review from the net, kenrockwell gave a very good review and appraise this D70S. BUT, I would like to know from photoforum members which happen to owned and use D70s extensively, what are your comments? care to share?.... please.

    Honestly, I used to post a thread regarding a brand new Nikon D3100 which I about to buy, but later I felt maybe I have cut my budget... .

    Thank You.
    just trying to get some nice pictures. With Best Regards, Captured...


  • #2
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    Inspect the body for obvious physical damage (cracks, dents, etc.)

    Put a lens on the body, point the camera at a plain white wall. With the camera in aperture priority mode (the "A" in "PASM" on the mode dial), dial it up the highest f-stop it takes (e.g. f/22) and take a photo of the plain white wall. Put the lens cap on, switch to manual (the "M" in "PASM" on the mode dial), and set the ISO to 100, the aperture doesn't matter (since the lens cap will be on for this shot anyway), and just set the shutter speed for something brief (1 second is fine). Take a photo with the lens cap on.

    Now pull the memory card and unload the photos into a laptop.

    The EXIF data in a Nikon contains a field that tells you the shutter count (the number of shots taken with the camera). Most cameras can do about 100,000 or even 150,000 before they can be expected to fail and require service. You want to see how close you are to that (was this a HEAVILY used camera or only mildly used.)

    Inspect the black frame at 100% magnification (1 pixel on screen = 1 pixel in camera). You're looking for "stuck" pixels... pixels that light up red or green, or white, etc. when, since you took a shot of a black lens cap, everything "should" be black. You can have "sensor noise" on long exposures and high ISO (and that's normal and NOT a sign of a defect) but at low ISO with a very short exposure you shouldn't have any stuck pixels.

    Inspect the white frame also at 100% magnification. Since you took a photo of a plain white featureless wall in good lighting, you should just have a flat white image. Look closely for dark spots, shadows, etc. At a high f-stop, any "dust" on the sensor will cast shadows onto the image. If it's JUST dust, it can easily be cleaned. But if someone attempted to clean a sensor and ended up scratching it, you'll see the shadows of the scratch in the image. Dust is fine. Scratches are not fine. I have a magnifier designed to lay on the body (where the lens attaches) and it lets me inspect the sensor in close detail (I have to go into the menu and tell the camera to flip the mirror up and open the shutter for a "manual cleaning"). You probably don't own such a tool, but the shadow test will reveal if there's a potential problem.

    Apart from that, look to see if the camera looks as if it was treated with reasonable care. Did they keep it clean, free of dust on the inside (did they leave the lens off and body cap off and it's full of dust?) Make sure you're happy with the functioning of everything on the camera.

    As for lenses, I've no idea what lens was the kit lens (you'll need to ask a Nikon shooter)...

    Turn off the auto-focus. Turn the focus ring back and forth from end to end. You should get a smoother and even amount of friction (a small amount of resistance) and should not have it catch or stick at any point. You also shouldn't be hearing any funny sounds coming from the lens (other than slight sound of the focus turning smoothly from end to end.) Look through the camera as you do this to make sure that the focus is changing as you turn the focus ring (elements in the lens aren't "stuck"), etc.

    Do the same with the zoom ring -- turning it from end to end and make sure it zooms to both extremes without getting stuck and is reasonably smooth.

    Remove the lens and visually inspect it with both rear and front caps removed (look through it at a plain but well-lit white wall). You are looking for dirt, mold, or other debris. You are also looking for scratches. Some scratches will not affect the optical performance but a bad scratch certainly will.

    Take a few text exposures with lens on camera. Turn the focus all the way to one extreme. Switch the auto-focus back on. Put the mode dial back on "A"perture priority and pick the lowest focal ratio possible (e.g. f/2.8, or f/3.5 or whatever the lowest value is.) Pick a subject about 10' away, in great lighting, and something that has high contrast but shows lots of intricate detail. Take a photo. It should auto-focus to the subject and fire the shot. Now manually turn the focus to the opposite extreme. Repeat the same shot. Inspect the photos to see if the auto-focus is working correctly and finds focusing coming from either direction. I don't know the details on how Nikon AF works (I know the Canon system fairly well). The Canon system's auto-focus will always find the "closest" thing it can focus on - so if there are multiple AF points (and there probably are) you'll want to make sure that the camera actually picks your intended subject or it'll throw off your test.

    Take a photo of a flat subject with detail. A brick wall... a newspaper laid out flat, etc. Make sure the subject is parallel to the camera's image sensor (don't take a wall or newspaper at an angle to the camera.) Use the lowest focal ratio your lens will allow. Now unload the photo and inspect. Is the "flat" subject in focus from left to right and top to bottom? Or is it more in focus on one side, but out of focus on the other. Damaged optics, a lens element askew, etc. could result from a dropped lens and could throw off focus. You just want to make sure focus of a "flat" subject is correct - which shows the optics are fine. BTW, there are shims on the sensor in the camera body (requires professional service to adjust them.) but it's possible to incorrectly "shim" the sensor and account for this same problem. But if the camera is to blame then ALL lenses will show focus better on one side, and soft on the other -- consistently. And since it's unlikely that every lens has a lens element out of whack in exactly the same way from lens to lens, the more likely explanation would be the sensor alignment in the body.

    These are the sorts of things I'd check a camera for.

    Other than that... it's a used camera. So don't expect it to be in perfect shape -- just make sure it's in working order and not on it's last legs.

    These few simple tests will make sure that the lens is ok and that the camera body is working ok.

    Good luck!
    Tim Campbell

  • #3
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    bought it... . Now, learning process begin... Thank You very much T.Campbell...
    just trying to get some nice pictures. With Best Regards, Captured...

  • #4
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    Hello friends...

    I'm officially entered the dark side...

    Find an easy target first... using my D70s...

    Thanks TCampbell for the tips.


    just trying to get some nice pictures. With Best Regards, Captured...

  • #5
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    My Nikon D70s (used, but in a very good shape and functioning great)

    so... this is the one... I'm just a hobbyist

    just trying to get some nice pictures. With Best Regards, Captured...

  • #6
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    Congratulations on your new camera. I see that as an added bonus, you also have a serious flash. You'll be happy you have that. I'm not sure how much experience you have with flashes of this type, but they can really open up the possibilities for you as you learn to use them for various lighting techniques.
    Tim Campbell

  • #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by TCampbell View Post
    Congratulations on your new camera. I see that as an added bonus, you also have a serious flash. You'll be happy you have that. I'm not sure how much experience you have with flashes of this type, but they can really open up the possibilities for you as you learn to use them for various lighting techniques.
    Thank you TCampbell,

    Actually they aren't bonuses. I bought many of those accessories before I bought this D70s.
    This DSLR unit, I only get D70s body + 18~55 AF lens + 4GB CF card (2pcs) + charger + battery + bag.
    Still learning this DSLR + flash...

    The battery life outstanding, AMAZING!!!
    -full charged 5Feb2012
    -250 shots daily (approx)- whatever pictures..
    -until yesterday, still not depleted...

    just trying to get some nice pictures. With Best Regards, Captured...


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