I'm seriously considering finally taking the digital leap in purchasing a digital slr. I've mentioned this to a couple people who have both suggested maybe waiting a bit. I'm considering the Nikon D200. Are there products coming out in the near future with >10 MP in a similar price range as the D200? I don't want to be disappointed that I took the leap at the wrong time. Any input would be greatly appreciated. I'm considering my purchase in the next 4-5? months. Thanks.
Always new products coming out. And if you wait for the next new camera, you'll never jump onboard.
I will share my decision making process. I am no longer a working photographer, and am now free to pursue whatever topics interest me. My approach is primarily that of a photojournalist, documenting the lives of my friends. Images are presented as prints, multimedia slide-shows and on my web-site.
When I bought the Coolpix 990, 5000 and 8400, it was with the intention of upgrading to the next model within 18 months to two years. Each was state of the art when I bought it and old tech by the time the next came out. Digital camera technology will continue to grow, but not at the rate it did during its adolescence. Since manufacturers stopped producing high-end mirrorless cameras, there was no obvious successor to the CP8400. It is a superb design and all it lacked was a big sensor allowing available darkness photography without excessive noise.
I have a substantial arsenal of excellent manual glass for my Nikon F3, and the D200 is fully functional with them. It has the excellent DX sensor. For these reasons I bought one. It also has 10MP compared the the 8MP of the CP8400 - this was not a factor in making my decision. I would have been just as happy with an 8MP camera.
I find it is a fully mature camera that I could live with for years. At any given ISO, the noise is less than 35mm grain would be at the same film speed. Manufacturers crippled the mirrorless designs, so consumers would gravitate to the higher-profit dSLRs, and the D200 shows this in the extreme. It is on and ready before you get it to your eye, there is little lag when you press the shutter, it will shoot up to five frames per second with an awesome amount of buffer.
The kit zoom practically snaps into focus and an electronic rangefinder is there as an aid to manual focusing with lenses f-5.6 or faster. While I still prefer viewing with the Coolpix swing and swivel monitor, I am otherwise impressed with the D200.
It was a very recent acquisition, so would I be depressed if Nikon announced the D200s or the D300 today? No. Any improvement would have minimal impact upon my work. Going to 12MP would be a yawner - no one would notice the difference in my prints and certainly not for screen viewing. Eight frames a second? No, I generally keep it at two to three frames a second, and only use it for time encapsulation pictures where I combine a sequence of shots into one. More buffer? It writes very quickly to my 133x 4GB card and I have never filled the buffer. Totally a non-issue. Much of this is already in the D2X and D2H - neither of which I considered. I feel that compared to the higher end cameras, the D200 is great value for little money.
Would I trade for the D200s or the D300 when it is announced? Not likely, with the capability of the D200 pretty much covering everything I need. Would I buy the D200s or the D300? Yes, if I decide to go with two bodies to lessen lens-changing in the field. I often worked with two bodies when shooting 35mm and it certainly is a convenience.
Hope these thoughts help.