Costco cameras and the D50

I was at Costco today and noticed that they now have the kit cameras in boxes out. Normally, you have to write down a number of pick up a flag, take it to a register to pay for it, and then pick it up behind the counter. Now you just pick up the box on some cameras.

If your box is big enough, I’m sure this will help sales. Those extra 20 minutes of gratification when you know it’s “yours” make a big difference.

The D50 kit

One of these was a stack of Nikon D50 kits. They’re selling two lenses with it: the 28-80mm f/3.5-5.6G and the 70-300mm f/4-5.6G. I think they charge under $800 for the set.

What a wonderful idea!

  1. It makes the box look bigger which will make it more attractive to audiences.
  2. Two lenses will justify that it ”really is an SLR camera” in the minds of consumers. The lenses are actually cheaply made, but they look very impressive, especially the 70-300mm, which is actually a decent lens if you are on a budget.
  3. It’s a lot of zoom (10x) and a lot of reach (450mm effective). Consumers like a lot of zoom, they don’t like very wide angles (18mm/24mm effective) because they don’t know how to compose shots with them.
  4. Most importantly, the lenses are both cheap and widely available. There seems to be some problem with the Thailand superfactory meeting demand and bundling these lenses instead of the 18-55mm DX, 18-70mm DX, 18-200mm DX get around that bottleneck. The 18-55mm production can be shunted to make D200 kits under $2000 and the other two are excellent kit or after-market walk-around lenses.

The Canon Rebel XT’s only real advantage is its compact size. The Nikon D50 looks more substantial and these two lenses paired up with it really play into that motif.

Neck and neck

Neck and neck
Costco, Mountain View, California

Nikon D70, Nikkor 18-200mm f/3.5-4.5G VR
1/45 sec @ f/4.8, iso 200, 48mm (72mm)

The lenses don’t do justice to the camera. On the other hand, look at it this way: for less than the price of a bridge, you get an Nikon dSLR and the same reach optically with no effect in the quality of your snapshots. That’s how most people will see it.

I bet if I go back in a week, they’re sold out.

5 thoughts on “Costco cameras and the D50

  1. Went back to Costco, they no longer have the kit out (the only one there is behind the display case). Also no longer has this deal.

  2. I am very fond of the Nikon SLR cameras and thnk you should bring back the D50 and D70 cameras.

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