Nikon D70 Review: Features, Pros, Cons, And Price

The art of photography is a wonderful skill to master. Although elements of design such as color, shape, and form are important, half the battle is finding and using a good camera. Photographers keep an eye out for cameras that can capture clear, detailed photos, and every year more and more models are created to give people the clarity and accuracy they want. However, there are a lot of older cameras that do a wonderful job taking pictures. The Nikon D70 is one of them.

This model has a lot of pros and cons. Most of the cons are outdated features, but the quality and precision of the camera remain top-notch in the market. This extensive guide can tell you exactly what the Nikon D70 does and doesn’t have. With this knowledge, you can make the purchasing decision that best benefits you.

What Is the Nikon D70?

Nikon D70 Review

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This model was introduced in 2004 as Nikon’s first consumer-level digital SLR camera. This was a great transition from traditional photographic film, leading to hundreds of modern brands and models that use digital SLR technology today. The Nikon D70 was a direct competitor to the Canon EOS 300D, which was announced a few months before. However, many buyers chose the Nikon D70 over the Canon EOS 300D for its professional-looking camera body and high-resolution images.

Although this model has been succeeded by the Nikon D70s, Nikon D80, and Nikon D90, this camera is still beloved by many photographers today for its high-quality photos and other beneficial features. The Nikon D70 is compatible with F-mount lenses, which allows buyers to use a wide range of interchangeable Nikon lenses on the same camera body. With this feature, photographers have the freedom to choose the lens they want while still using the Nikon D70. This model also uses a USB cable to transfer images to a computer and has a built-in flash.

With a 6.1-megapixel sensor and an ISO of 1600, the image quality is fantastic. The dynamic range of this model is excellent, which means the camera can capture both lowlights and highlights well, although the Nikon D70 tends to underexpose images. The focus and color accuracy is on point, too.


The Nikon D70 has a great body design. With rubber surrounding the hand grip, the model is comfortable to hold, and the small body is compact and feels balanced in the hand. It weighs 679g, which is about the average weight for cameras of this type, although it is heavier than most modern cameras that are the same size. Along with this, the buttons are located nicely around the body to allow maximum ease.

Nikon D70 Review

Because of the midnight black finish and sleek exterior, many people choose this camera for its professional appearance. Compared to the Canon EOS 300D and other similar cameras, the Nikon D70 looks simple and polished. Depending on the lens you attach to the body, this camera can pass as a very expensive piece of equipment.

The optical viewfinder is an enjoyable feature. Located just above the display screen, this eye-level viewfinder gives you a live feed of what the lens is capturing. This little screen is handy because it helps block everything else out so you can fully concentrate on what the camera is looking at. The viewfinder on the Nikon D70 is clear, bright, and sharp. On the bottom of the screen, the viewfinder has information such as battery status, focus area, shutter speed, and flash to help you get the most out of your camera experience.

Another benefit of the Nikon D70 is the impressive battery life. The rechargeable lithium-ion battery pack can last for a very long time, even when you view your pictures often on the display screen. This is useful when you are taking a lot of shots and don’t have time to charge your camera.

A Few Flaws

Because this model was made more than a decade ago, there are many features that the Nikon D70 does not have. Some of these include wireless connection, HD video, and touchscreen. These missing attributes can be irritating not to have, especially in today’s world. However, the Nikon D70 does very well for a 2004 model. Moving on, here are a few noticeable flaws this camera has.

Nikon D70 Review

One of the biggest setbacks of this model is the tiny 1.8-inch LCD (liquid-crystal display) screen. The screen is very small, which makes it hard to look at images captured without squinting. This camera does not have the ability to show what’s being captured on the LCD, so you must look through the viewfinder to see what is being shot. However, this isn’t always a bad thing. The viewfinder screen has no distortion and allows photographers to clearly view what is being captured.

If you’re not careful, the camera body can get damaged easily. With no environmental sealing, this model is vulnerable to dirt and dust, so be careful where you set up your photo shoot. The LCD screen can get damaged as well, but Nikon offers a clear, protective screen that can prevent scratches or cracks. This screen is not initially included with the camera.

Another thing that many users notice is the high amounts of image noise in lowlight shots. Like film grain in old movies and videos, image noise is the random speckles in pictures that aren’t normally there. This is caused by random signal fluctuations in the circuitry of the camera. While this can create an old-fashioned look that some people like, it usually degrades the quality of your photo. Most cameras created after 2004 have less image noise than the Nikon D70.


With so many new cameras to compare to, the Nikon D70 seems a little outdated. However, the low price balances out the pros and cons. In 2004, this model was in the market for $1000. Today, you can purchase the Nikon D70 for roughly $70. With this modern price, the small screen and limited features seem reasonable. The low price allows you to get nice-quality images without having to invest too much of your time and money.

Public Perception of the Nikon D70

Because the Nikon D70 has been around for such a long time, many buyers have reviewed the pros and cons of this model. Overall, most people give this camera an average rating on quality and use. It’s a decent camera that takes excellent pictures, although the features are a little outdated. Although you may decide to choose a camera that has newer and nicer qualities, this camera sufficiently takes professional-looking photos that can do just as well.

Nikon D70 Review

Many people started out their professional photography careers with this camera because of its high quality. Users have remarked that at first the controls are somewhat confusing. Reading the manual is necessary, especially if you are not familiar with high-quality cameras.

Is the Nikon D70 a Good Fit for You?

Choosing a camera usually depends on three main factors:

  • Your price range. How much are you willing to spend on a camera? Is it an investment for your career or just a fun hobby?
  • The quality of images. Are looking for a camera that can take great wedding or birthday shots? Or are you looking for something to occasionally take on vacation?
  • ?The level of high-tech features. Are you looking for a camera that has an articulated LCD touch screen, or are you satisfied with a model that is a bit more old school?

With these important aspects in mind, you can decide if the Nikon D70 is really for you. Consider what your budget looks like and what your photography needs are.

Along with that, it’s safe to say that the Nikon D70 is perfect for beginning or intermediate photographers. Using this model is an easy way to start growing accustomed to taking pictures that look professional. After a year or two of experimentation, you can decide whether or not you want to upgrade. If you enjoy taking photos, consider buying a more expensive model that has the advanced features you’re looking for. If you decide you’re not interested in furthering your photography skills, the $70 Nikon D70 isn’t too big of a loss.

Final Thoughts on This Model

The Nikon D70 was a wonderful addition to the market in 2004 and is still a great camera today. If you’re looking for a less-expensive camera that can take high-quality shots, this model may be your best solution. The features are basic but aren’t too much to handle. Once you get the hang of things, you can take advantage of the Nikon D70’s excellent battery life while taking hundreds of shots, and with the help of the optical viewpoint, you can focus on capturing the best shots in any location.

This model isn’t the best choice for everyone, but it is a good option to consider. With its low price, wonderful accuracy, and nice camera body design, the Nikon D70 can be a great camera to start off with.

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