First of all thanks for a great site!!
I've been using the Canon Powershot A80 as my general purpose family camera for 3-4 years now. But before that I was using(and still owning) a Nikon FM film SLR with some pretty old lenses: Nikkor 50mm 1:1.4 No.5281240 and Nikkor-S 35mm 1:2.8
My passion, besides documenting my family, lies in landscape and panoramic photograhphy, so I've been lucky to be able to borrow the Russian Horizon 202 from a friend from time to time. Recently I borrowed the Panasonic DMC LX2 from another friend to see if that would satisfy my needs, but the barrel distortion when zoomed out and the noise levels put me off.
So finally I decided to to go for a proper DSLR and got my mind set on the Nikon D80. But I'm wondering which kit lens to go with it , and I narrowed it down to the 18-70mm and 18-135mm - the 18-200mm VR is too expensive for me right now.
I like to do 180 degrees panoramic shots and then stichting them in Canon PhotoStitch, but I often experience that the lines doesn't match up (probably due to wrong focal length and lens distortion or even cheap software). Vignetting is also an issue when stitching multiple images together ...
I would really appreciate advise on which of the two lenses to go for in terms of stitching panoramas/general use. I'm leaning towards the 18-70mm in terms of build quality. Maybe I should get a lens with fixed focal length specifically for stitching later on - any adwise on that? I'll still need a zoom lens for general use though.
Will I be able to use any of my old lenses on the D80 - I don't mind the manual aspects - but will I destroy any switches/contacts?
And finally any advise on photo stitching software? Canons PhotoStitch is decent but I would like some more options ... been looking at PTGui ...
That's it for now - quite a lot though!!