Nikon D50 SLR Review

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Features & Controls

Nikon-F Mount Lenses

Nikon D50 SLR

The D50 is compatible with about 90% of the F mount Nikkor lenses made. Because its DX format imager is physically smaller than a 35mm film frame you need to use a picture angle conversion factor of 1.5x to determine proper focal length coverage when using 35mm format lenses.

Closeup of the all-metal Nikon-F lens mount. Upper left is the focus-assist illuminator lamp, also used for red-eye reduction flash mode. On the right side is the lens release lock button and the focus mode switch.

Nikon D50 SLR

Focus Mode selector switch (AF or Manual). The MA/M switch on the lens selects either full manual or auto focus with manual override. The D50 employs the Nikon High-speed, high precision 5-area AF system with predictive focus tracking and Lock-on™ to ensure quick response and sharp focus. The AF-assist illuminator helps ensure performance in low-light situations and has a range of 1'8" to 9'10" (0.5 to 3m) and is effective with lenses with a focal length of 24-200mm.

Nikon D50 SLR

Pre-packaged as an ideal companion lens for the new D50 digital SLR camera, the AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G ED is a versatile zoom lens. It is an ultra-compact, lightweight standard zoom lens with a 3x zoom range that is ideal for everyday photography. With a popular 18-55mm focal length range, the lens can be conveniently used to photograph everything from wide angle landscapes to portraits and is well suited for use at parties, on vacation, and other occasions.

The AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 55-200mm f/4-5.6G ED brings far-away subjects to the photographer without the burden of carrying a large telephoto lens. Zooming in on those elusive action shots at soccer or baseball games will fill the frame with images that would be otherwise impossible to capture. Its impressive zoom range of 55-200mm allows users the versatility to capture everything from razor-sharp candid portraits to sports, nature and even wildlife pictures. Despite its long zoom range, the AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 55-200mm f/4-5.6G ED is remarkably compact and lightweight. Both lenses will be available in black (shown above) or silver to match the D50 body color options.

Nikon D50 SLR

To ensure outstanding optical performance, both new lenses also feature Nikon's exclusive Extra-Low Dispersion (ED) glass to minimize chromatic aberrations, and Silent Wave Motor technology (SWM) for fast, quiet auto-focusing. All of Nikon's DX Nikkor lenses are optimized for the DX format sensors found in all Nikon digital SLR cameras, making the lens smaller, lighter and with exceptional center-to-edge-to-corner image quality and performance.

The current lineup of DX Nikkor lenses includes:

When used with a Nikon digital SLR camera and NikonCapture software, images shot with the AF DX Fisheye-Nikkor 10.5mm lens can be transformed into ultra-wide angle rectilinear images with a choice of 100° and 130° horizontal angles of view.

i-TTL Flash

Nikon D50 SLR

The speedlight automatically pops up and fires when natural lighting is inadequate or to add balanced Fill-Flash when there is strong backlighting in Auto, Portrait, Child, Close-up or Night Portrait modes. In PASM modes it is manually opened with the button release.

Nikon's i-TTL technology improves the accuracy of fill-flash exposure and white balance in a picture, by seamlessly integrating color information from the speedlight's monitor pre-flash with information from the 420-pixel RGB sensor.

Guide number (ISO 200/ISO 100, m): approx. 15/11 (manual full 17/12)

Nikon D50 SLR

You can shoot at synchronized speeds up to 1/500 second for great fill effects under bright light conditions. FV Lock maintains the measured flash value while recomposing the shot so you still achieve the appropriate flash output for the subject.

Nikon SB600

The built-in Speedlight offers a level of performance that is unrivalled in any other digital SLR camera in its class. Designed to be a part of Nikon's growing Creative Lighting System, the built-in Speedlight adopts Nikon's exclusive i-TTL flash control technology.

An SB-800 can be mounted on the D50 and used as the Master Speedlight to control up to three remote groups of wireless Speedlights, with each group consisting of any number of SB-800 or SB-600 Speedlights.

Nikon SB600

The D50 controls the SB-600 or SB-800's motorized zoom head and makes use of its more powerful AF-assist beam. The output of the flash is controlled precisely thanks to the new i-TTL flash exposure control system. And nothing compares to the "natural" and non-harsh look of bounce flash illumination.

Nikon D50 SLR

The D50 does not have a built-in PC sync port so you need to use the optional Nikon AS-15 Sync Terminal Adapter when connecting to external studio flash units. It slides on the flash hot shoe and gives you a standard PC sync connector.

(Note that the AS-15 does not contain an isolation circuit so be careful of strobes that use high trigger voltages.)


Nikon D50 SLR

The fixed eye-level penta-Dach-mirror type viewfinder shows approximately 95% of the captured frame with approx. 0.75x magnification. It has dioptric adjustment (-1.6 to +0.5 m-1) and a comfortable 18mm eye relief with a fairly wide viewing angle. It employs a fixed Type B BriteView Clear Matte screen Mark V with superimposed focus brackets and on-demand grid lines.

To accommodate individual differences in vision, viewfinder lenses are available with diopters of -5, -4, -3, -2, 0, +0.5, +1, +2, and +3 m-1. The optional DG-2 magnifies the scene displayed in the viewfinder for close-up photography, copying, telephoto lenses, and other tasks that call for added precision. Requires eyepiece adapter (available separately). The optional DR-6 attaches at a right angle to the viewfinder eyepiece, allowing the image in the viewfinder to be viewed from above when the camera is in the horizontal shooting position.

Nikon D50 SLR

The D50 viewfinder display - in the center are the 5 autofocus area indicators and the center-weighted metering circle. The focus area that is selected or active will turn red briefly when the shutter is half-pressed.

Nikon D50 SLR

Across the bottom is the digital information display that shows:

(5) autofocus status, (6) focus area, (7) flash value lock, (8) shutter speed, (9) aperture, (10) flash compensation, (11) exposure compensation, (12) # of shots remaining, (13) flash ready, (14) AE lock, (15) analog exposure display, (16) auto sensitivity indicator, (17) "k" appears when memory remains for over 1000 shots.

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