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Nikon D 100 vs D 70

In a previous post, the Nikon D 100 was lauded as an excellent
camera for photographing jewelry. Recently, I have been interested
in getting something of that caliber.

In a recent visit to my local photo store, the clerk was saying that
the D 70 was, in many ways better than the D 100.

By way of making things even more complicated for a photo layman,
there is a newer version of the D 70. The clerk says the primary
difference is in the software, which he can (legally) download and
install in the D 70.

For those of you who are knowledgeable about such things: what is
your take on this?

Jim Benson

James, I have a D-100. I’ve also had some exposure to the D-70.
The biggest differences I see are that some of the features have been
externalized to buttons rather than menu. The D-70 is the hot new
toy from Nikon. It’s a nice camera for those wanting a DSLR.
Interchangeable lenses are nice to have, as is the Nikon Speed
Flash. Canon also has a decent camera in about the same price range.


I do not know much about the D 100, but we just bought a D 70 along
with a nikon micro lens. A Nikon rep did the software upgrade while
we waited: he used a compact flash card installed in the camera and
updated the display color on the LCD. We have not yet taken Jewelry
shots, but at the camera shop we played with lighting and got some
really nice shots. Some of the shots were of a 1 ct. diamond showing
the facets and some nice reflections off of the facets. We used the
built in flash to trigger a slave off to the side.

We did not think that there would be an advantage to the D 70s: the
software upgrade made the menu current, the LCD is 1.8 not 2.0
inches, and you cannot use a wired remote, you can use an IR remote.

Charles and Jennifer Friedman
Ventura by the Sea

If you’re really serious about finding the right camera for your
specific needs, you can find some excellent reviews on many brands
including the 2 you mention here:

He has a full review, list of specifications, full list of features,
pictures of menus as well as of the cameras from all angles, a 360
degree Quicktime Tour, and if you go back to the main page there are
also printer and accessories reviews. At the top left of each
review page is a drop down menu of including a “Steve’s
Conclusion” page which gives a somewhat shorter summary of the
camera and what it’s good for.

I also recommend finding the cameras you’ve narrowed your choices to
at a local shop and locating the features you want to see if you
find the interface to be intuitive or just really confusing.
Features you’ll use a lot like white balance, or manual focus,
should be easy to get to and easy to use.


Hi Jim,

I use a Nikon D70, and it is a great camera. My suggestion is to buy
the D70 body and then buy the Nikon 60mm AF Micro lens, this will
enable you to get real close up ,detailed photos. One benefit with
this camera is that all previous Nikon lenses will fit so if you are
a Nikon user like me, you already have a collection of lenses. I
have been a goldsmith for over 40 years and a photographer for 35
years, I have cameras from a Mamiya RB67, and four Nikon SLRs, so I
know what I am talking about. If anyone is interested in a top
quality compact digital I can reccommend the Panasonic Lumix
DMC-LC5, with the Leica Summicron lens, if you can get one as this
model has been superceded. If you look at my gallery on orchid, the
photos of my pieces are all my own work, but with various cameras,
the one with rock crystal bowls was taken with the D70.

I hope this is of some help to you.

Good luck
James Miller

Hi Jim,

I have been really happy with my D70 - I’m still learning but have
already had some good results with a macro lens. I’ve had no direct
experience with the D100, so can’t compare.

There is a great digital camera review site here, which you may have
already seen:

It has very detailed reviews on all models and compares the D70 to
the D100 and others.

I have also heard good things about the new Canon EOS 350D, which
has been compared very favourably to the D70 (it is 8 megapixel):

Eva Martin


I have had a Nikon Coolpix 995 for years and it is fantastic. The
macro capabilities are excellent and it is very easy to use. What
software are you talking about? I just use photoshop to touch up and
adjust the photos afterwards.


    We did not think that there would be an advantage to the D
70s: the software upgrade made the menu current, the LCD is 1.8 not
2.0 inches, and you cannot use a wired remote, you can use an IR

With the Nikon Capture Control software (included with the camera)
you can control the majority of the D70’s exposure functions
(aperture, shutter speed, exposure compensation, flash compensation,
metering, ISO speed, bracketing, etcetera) from your computer as
well as the shutter while the camera is connected to the computer
via the USB cable. This gives you a tremendously useful remote
control. It will also directly download the image to the computer as
it is taken if used in this mode.

I love my D70

Jim Binnion

James Binnion Metal Arts
Phone (360) 756-6550
Toll Free (877) 408 7287
Fax (360) 756-2160

Member of the Better Business Bureau

I bought my D-100 over three years ago; I am selling it and all the
gear this week. I am upgrading to the D2X. My D-100 paid for itself
the first week I owned it. I’m not nearly so optimistic about the
D2X…But business is good and why do I work so hard if not to
occasionally be stupid with the moola.

One issue that seems to have been understated in this thread is the
importance of glass. The D-70, D-100 or their Canon counterparts
are all great cameras. What will make the difference is when you
decide what lens to put on it. Presumably this is for close-up/ macro
work of jewelry.

I have the micro-nikkor 60mm f2.8 which I am selling I also have the
micro-nikkor 85mm PC f2.8 which is the best lens in my bag period,
While third party manufacturers make good value based products the
image quality in digital that is becoming the norm will exceed these
lenses capability. You will see the difference in high end digital
where you would likely not in a film based system. In fact there are
numerous Canon and Nikon lenses that can’t keep up with there digital

The PC 85 is not easy to work with. But the overall image quality is
amazing, plus as it is a tilt shift lens with enormous depth of
field, it was the first lens that allowed me to bring a mineral
specimen into full focus front to back, same with jewelry. (There is
also the issue of retained value, go to and compare
the retained value of Nikon and Canon vs. Sigma, Tamron or Tokina)

Canon has a similar lens to the PC85.

For a complete discussion of Nikon lenses have a look at:

I have no knowledge of a similar independent Canon site but I am
certain there must be one.

Of course there are other issues in the process, lights,
backgrounds, image processing software etc. but it all starts IMHO
with having the best glass on the front of the box you can afford.

Christopher L. Johnston
PO Box 354
Omaruru Namibia