Workhorse of the year
Earlier this year I had some unexpected royalties and decided to blow them on a Nikon D70 digital SLR.
It has turned out to be a fantastic workhorse — the best camera I’ve used since the rangefinder Leica. I’ve taken thousands of photographs and the only failures have been mine, not the camera’s. It’s very light, but amazingly robust and fits naturally but unobtrusively into one’s hand. I take it everywhere with me. The best thing about it, though, is that it functions like a ‘real’ camera with none of the squidgy processing lag of old style digital cameras. Just press the button and hear the familiar clunk of the mirror flipping up and down — no question about whether you’ve actually taken a picture. And you look and focus through the viewfinder rather than via an LCD screen.
There are a few downsides. For example, my existing Nikon Speedlite flashgun won’t work with it: you’re supposed to purchase a special — outrageously expensive — Speedlite (I haven’t); the onboard pop-up flash is hopeless; and the range of indie lenses available is much narrower than what’s available for the Canon 300D. But even so, the D70 has been a revelation to own and use. Interesting, then, that Popular Photography has named it ‘Camera of the Year’. And, if that were not enough, I see that Ben Hammersley wants one! He has such good taste, that lad.