So, how do I find the Nikon D50?
Let me put it this way; Its like meeting a long lost friend. Really.
I used to have a Minolta 3000, a nice zoom lens and an Olympus IS-1000 way back in 1992. Mind you, although they were both second-hands, it was my very first SLRs. I sold my drawings and worked part-time in UK until I had enough to purchase them.
However, what I could not purchase was time. Being a student, there is not much time to venture into photography or any other things. But whatever time I had, it was all devoted to photography. And from there, I found that I liked taking pictures of people more. In other words, portraits. Still, it was not easy to find willing subjects and therefore, it evolved to stealth
portraits. This means I have to use a zoom lens to take photos of people who are unaware of my presence. Ha ha ha ha
Still, the feeling of caressing and holding the SLRs, pressing the shutter button and hearing the click of the mirror and shutter moving up was so satisfying. It was as if you life has a purpose. I still do not understand why I veered away from the World of SLRs.
OK, maybe it was the cost. In just two days since I had the D50, I took about 200 shots. Maybe I just like the sound of the shutter. Anwyay, 200 shots was equal to about five and a half rolls of film (36 exposure). Now, that is a lot of money for a Hobbyist. But for a Pro, this is nothing. (Last time, I was even told that there is a special film canister which gives you hundreds of shots for the camera). Imagine the cost of developing all 200 shots, wait for a few days to go through the big wad of photos only to pick one or two perfect shots. Nowadays, for less than RM40, you can get a 1GB SD card, shoot and then view them on the PC. How's that for technology? So, it does not matter if you took 400 shots or 1000 shots. The only cost would be the memory cards.
Choosing a SLR means planning for the future too. If you choose a a Nikon, and when you invest in their lenses and accessories, it would be expensive to suddenly change to other makes such as Canon or Olympus as you would need to start all over. The same goes for memory cards as they seem to have a "limited" lifespan. Take for example, the SmartMedia card, which was adopted by a lot of cameras in the beginning. Now, it is superceeded by the SD card and the Compact Flash for the high-end SLRs. Some brands tried to gain a foothold in the memory card arena by introducing their own where the cards are only useable on their own cameras. FujiFilm has their XD card and Sony has their Memory Sticks. Woe betide you if you have a lot of expensive Compact Flash cards lying around and suddenly, you changed to a Nikon D50 which only accepts SD cards (Well, not me, OK?) Indirectly, its like the format wars that was started by the 8-tracks vs. cassettes, VHS vs. Betamax, etc. And when the dust slowly settles, well, let's just hope you chose the correct format.
Weighing at a reassuring 846grams (plus strap, otherwise, its about 620grams), the D50 immediately feels right at home in my hands. Immediately, they are starting to remember the familiar grip positions and it feels so natural. Its all coming back to me. I am no longer being constrained by the camera. I do not have to wait for it to ready itself for everyshot. I do not have to wait seconds for it to warm up. The D50 is always ready for me and sometimes, I feel that I am witholding the D50's potential instead.
And now, with the D50, I do not have to wait for the camera; It waits for me.