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David Busch's Nikon D300 Guide to Digital SLR Photography [Paperback]

David D. Busch
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
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Book Description

April 15 2008
Have you unpacked your new Nikon D300 digital SLR camera and want to get started right away taking professional quality pictures? David Busch?s Nikon D300 Guide to Digital SLR Photography will show you how, when, and why to use all the cool features, controls, and functions of your camera to take great photographs of anything. After a brief introduction to the camera to help you get your bearings, you?ll dive right into all the exciting, innovative capabilities of the D300 including the focus controls, flash synchronization options, how to choose lenses, and which exposure modes are best. Beautiful, full-color images illustrate where the essential buttons and dials are, and you?ll find tips and techniques that can be applied to any type of photography to help you take better pictures with your new digital SLR. Whether you are new to digital SLR photography or an experienced pro, David Busch?s Nikon D300 Guide to Digital SLR Photography will help you maximize your camera?s capabilities.

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Product Description


Introduction Chapter 1: Setting Up Your Nikon D300 Chapter 2: Nikon D300 Roadmap Chapter 3: Setup: Playback and Shooting Menus Chapter 4: Setup: The Custom Setting Menu Chapter 5: Setup: The Setup Menu, Retouch Menu, and My Menu Chapter 6: Getting the Right Exposure Chapter 7: Advanced Shooting Tips for Your Nikon D300 Chapter 8: Working with Lenses Chapter 9: Making Light Work for You Chapter 10: Useful Software for the Nikon D300 Chapter 11: Nikon D300: Troubleshooting and Prevention Glossary

About the Author

With more than a million books in print, David D. Busch is the world's #1 selling digital camera guide author, and the originator of popular digital photography series like David Busch's Pro Secrets and David Busch's Quick Snap Guides. He has written more than a dozen hugely successful guidebooks for Sony and Sony Digital models, as well as many popular books devoted to dSLRs, including Mastering Digital Photography, Second Edition, and Digital Pro Secrets. As a roving photojournalist for more than twenty years, he illustrated his books, magazine articles, and newspaper reports with award-winning images. He's operated his own commercial studio, suffocated in formal dress while shooting weddings-for-hire, and shot sports for a daily newspaper and upstate New York college. His photos and articles have appeared in Popular Photography & Imaging, The Rangefinder, The Professional Photographer, and hundreds of other publications. He's also reviewed dozens of digital cameras for CNet and Computer Shopper, and his advice has been featured in National Public Radio's All Tech Considered. When About.com named its top five books on Beginning Digital Photography, debuting at the #1 and #2 slots were Busch's Digital Photography All-In-One Desk Reference for Dummies and Mastering Digital Photography. During the past year, he's had as many as five of his books listed in the Top 20 of Amazon.com's Digital Photography Bestseller list--simultaneously! Busch's 120-plus other books published since 1983 include bestsellers like David Busch's Quick Snap Guide to Digital Lenses. Visit his website at http://www.dslrguides.com.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An astoninshingly great buy June 16 2008
In Nov. 2006, I wrote a very negative review of David Busch's book on the Nikon D200. In fairness to him, I must now take the time to shout it from the rooftops: This is a great book doing justice to a great camera. The book is affordable and it is huge at 432 pages. It is also large format (7.25 x 9 in) when compared to the Magic Lantern books. The illustrations are among the best I have ever seen, especially when it comes to showing camera functions and menu items. This is not a rehash of other books telling you how to take sports or landscape pictures to add pages. Rather, pretty much all the pages are devoted to the camera and there is some useful info about Nikon lenses and speedlights. There are also a few tips (one of which has already saved me twice the price of the book). This book is almost a must to all those who have the chance to own the D300. Beginners and advanced amateurs will find plenty to be thankful for and I recommend it very highly.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is the one! Dec 26 2008
By Ned Middleton TOP 100 REVIEWER
As mentioned elsewhere, I am in the process of converting from film to digital photography and there are certain aspects which I have found quite daunting. Over the past few months I have studied several books and tutorial DVDs on the subject as that process of conversion continues. I have also attended courses run by Nikon (UK) and it was on the first of those I was introduced to this book. My fellow student insisted this was the best available on the subject and I have come to the conclusion he was right.

Of course, there are those whose expertise is already at a well advanced level who seem to delight in purchasing products such as this just to write a less than praiseworthy review. It's called showing off! Take it from someone who has studied the field, whatever you want or need to know about this camera, the answer really is found in this product.

Laid out in an easy-to-follow format with plenty of excellent illustrations this book begins at the BEGINNING by helping you set up your camera. Slowly, the author builds upon each item shown as we work our way through the book to learn all, there is to learn about the Nikon D300.

I always find it better to read a number of books on the same subject - if only because a different approach often helps to explain a difficult point in an alternative way. If, however, you can only afford one book on this subject, then "This" is the one to buy.

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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Over and Above the Nikon Manual- UPDATE Sept. 22 2008
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Original review below- I am removing 1 star because as I re-read it more intensely I am discovering errors and omissions which are really inexcusable. The most glaring examples are where David says that a two-button reset will not affect your shooting bank presets which is incorrect- it does reset the currently selected shooting bank's Quality/file format to JPEG normal and WB to auto, sensitivity to ISO200 etc. Also in that section is an apparent contradiction on what the shooting menu reset does and doesn't affect. And top that off with a reference to a more in depth discussion of Picture Controls in Chapter 6 that doesn't exist- not even in adjacent chapters.....according to the book's own index doesn't exist period. And some important things really could be explained more thoroughly to save the user some massive confusion- like the important differences between default, optional and custom picture controls- nop vs ncp files.


It's a really great book if you are new to the D300 and maybe even new to DSLRs/photography. Advanced photographers may not need a book like this. But it's easier to read than the manual, more colour photos, explains why particular settings may be desirable as opposed to just defining them. It was a much thicker book than I expected, and it goes into discussions of lenses and flash photography and other relevant things that the original manual wouldn't touch on. Very informative- I thought I would skim through a lot of it having owned a D70 and other (D)SLRs but I was surprised to learn a few things- and I've only made it halfway through the book at this point. And I get the confidence the author knows the product very well from first hand use and is passionate about photography-so to me his opinions are valuable.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing..... Dec 10 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I have to differ with the other reviewers. I have had several digital cameras and my first SLR was the Nikon D300. I bought this book to guide me along because of course the manual is unclear and unhelpful. Well, I've carted this book around on long plane journeys and have tried to learn the nuances of the camera from it. Disappointing, is all I can say. It is a huge book and very verbose. Too chatty. Doesn't get to the point in a clear and organized way. I simply cannot recommend it and I'm exploring the other books in the field.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  148 reviews
173 of 182 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Navigating the Menus April 22 2008
By Conrad J. Obregon - Published on Amazon.com
I've been shooting Nikon cameras since 1960. When I look at the collection of buttons, dials, switches, screens and menus on Nikon's D300 digital SLR, I wonder if I would have become a photographer back then if faced with so many choices.

All these choices are good. They let you customize the D300 to be used exactly the way you would want. And the embarrassment of riches means that one camera can do many things, for many different photographers, so that ultimately a highly sophisticated machine can be delivered more cheaply to photographers whose styles vary markedly.

Some of the choices seem really important. Do you want to set up focus so that you are better able to capture a sitting portrait subject or a flying bird? Other choices seem more trivial. Would you rather review the last image you captured by pressing on the left side or the top of a multi-selector switch?

To deal with all these choices, Nikon provides a manual of several hundred pages that explains the options that are offered with some very small, sketchy illustrations, but without explanation of which options might be better for a particular type of photographer.

David Busch set out to bring a little more clarity to the bewildering field of choices, and does a relatively good job of it. Unfortunately, that means going through each menu and selection step by step. The illustrations are larger than the manual and in color, and Busch actually makes recommendations about items to select. For example the D300 allows you to elect to have either 51 or 11 focus points available (which is different then selecting a focus point, once you've made the choice). My first instinct after reading the manual was to ask why everyone wouldn't select the maximum number of focus points, but the author pointed out that 11 points is faster for selecting a focus point for large subject matter, like photographing some sports.

After going through all of the options, Busch returns to several key subjects that usually require the integration of several choices, like getting the right exposure or the best focusing for particular kinds of photography. There's a chapter on lenses that experienced photographers can skip, but that any beginner bold enough to purchase a D300 for his first digital single lens reflex will find useful. The chapter on lighting contained a good explanation of Nikon's Creative Lighting System that allows for an integration of electronic flash in a more useful way then ever before. I only wish Busch had been able to convey the joy of being able to dance around the subject without any kind of tether while your flashes responded. It's easy to feel like David Hemmings with Veruschka in "Blow Up", without all that hot continuous lighting.

The book finishes up with a quick glance at the software available for post processing, which, other than listing the names of software, really didn't provide much help in making a choice, and then covers some maintenance issues like updating firmware and cleaning the camera's sensor.

By its nature this is not an exciting book, since the author eschews any effort at telling us about the artistry possible with the camera, but that's the nature of manuals. One should also note that occasionally Busch falls from grace in small ways, as when he suggests that the D300 can control up to four groups of lights in CLS, when what he probably means to say is that you can transmit your signals on four separate channels, or that four groups can be controlled if you use an external flash. These errors are small and quickly identifiable to anyone trying to use the menus. On the other hand there are a few subjects on which I would have liked to see more material, like AF Fine Tune, where a discussion of the use of targets to select the tuning would have been useful. And I was sorry the chapter on lenses didn't mention the use of focal length to control perspective, especially since there was a set of full page illustrations that showed this so well.

All in all, this is an excellent introduction to the options that are available to photographers with the D300. Although early adopters may already have figured out most of the possibilities, there is probably still something for an experienced user to learn, and, if you've just picked up a D300, this is lot easier to use then the Nikon manual.
56 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book !!! May 20 2008
By Simon - Published on Amazon.com
I received the book of David Busch a few days ago. I hadn't the patience to read the manual that came with the Nikon D300 because of its format and the lack of color in it. I had read on the Internet that this book is very well written. Well, I'm not disappointed at all ! It's a great book (432 pages, 190 full-colour pictures, a lot of tables) that explains every single button and feature of the D300. Beside the detailed explanation, there are also a lot of shooting tips. There are also chapters on getting the right exposure, choosing the right lenses, the lighting basics, useful softwares, cleaning the sensor etc.

I think it's iniquitous to write, as one reviewer did, that this book is a ripp-off because there are a lot of pictures that had been used in the Canon 40D book. The controls and features of the Nikon D300 are very well explained in David Busch's book, with numerous pictures of the buttons of this very camera. If there are some landscape pictures or some paragraphs on the lighting basics that were used in another book, it doesn't not prevent this book from being one of the best tool to learn quite all the capabilities of the Nikon D300 ! I thank David Busch for his great work !!!
94 of 102 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent D300 Guide. Probably His Best Book Yet April 27 2008
By Arizona Photographer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I received my D300 in December 2007 and as of the end of April 2008, I've shot 15,600 photos. This book is the perect guide for any D300 owner. Some of the menu options are different from D200 or D80 and the author does a very good job explaining what is different and why.

The book covers all the camera features and gives you ideas about how to best use the features. The book is over 400 pages and larger in size than previous guides of this type. It makes it easier to read. The book is full of color examples.

There is a great section on lenses, flashes. advanced shooting tips, etc.

The manual that comes with the camera is okay to a point, but it has no dicussion. David's book dicusses why you should do something a certain way rather than just listing the options and letting you figure it out.

I learned a lot and will keep reading it to learn everything I can to improve my photography.
54 of 57 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best book on the D300 May 31 2008
By David J. Schneider - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
By far the best book on the Nikon D300. Whereas most competing books do a quick overview of the options and then launch into generic how to take pictures advice (which is likely too simplistic and therefore not useful to someone who shells out major bucks for the D300), Busch's book concentrates almost exclusively on the various (and seemingly infinite) options for the D300. The book is clear and absolutely essential for those who have bought (or want to buy) a D300. I actually bought the book before buying the camera, and reading it convinced me to buy. The documentation that comes with the camera is clear but doesn't help decide when the various options might be useful. Most of the other books on the D300 are not much of an improvement in that regard. Busch's book is. Also the Busch book is extremely helpful on various accessories; the Nikon site is useless in deciding which of various versions of some accessories are important to buy. Several minor errors, a result of rush to publication, but not troublesome.
47 of 49 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars David Busch, where were you when I had all my other Nikons? May 19 2008
By David Sapire - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I just traded all my old Nikons for a D300 and knowing that the factory manual would be almost unintelligible both because of the language as well as its physical size, I automatically searched for but was unsuccessful in finding my old stand-by - the Magic Lantern Guide to (you name the camera). Fortunately, I came upon this book and based solely on the recommendations of others on this site, I purchased it. Physically larger than the Magic Lantern series, his book is much easier to read and the information is so very clearly presented that it is a pleasure to read. The illustrations are very clear, well-labeled and informative.In comparison to the Magic Lantern series which I had for my other Nikons, this book is far and away superior. If you have D300 and do not have extensive experience with advanced digital SLR's, this is the best guide that I have seen so far. Buy it!,
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