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Old 08-25-2008, 03:53 PM   #1
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DSLRs

Canon or Nikon? Any recommended models for entry-level (but want to be able to use it for a long time and get better)?

I've been using a Nikon D40 with a few Nikkor lenses for the past few weeks and I don't think I can go back to my own Panasonic. The picture quality is not so much different, but I noticed a huge difference being able to shoot really fast with the DSLR. I think I have that option on the Panasonic, but it's just much more natural and better on the DSLR. I do shoot a lot of dogs in action and dog shows so I can see the value in this. Also, I used the D40 for over a week before I needed to recharge the battery *drools*.
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Old 08-25-2008, 06:51 PM   #2
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You probably can't go wrong the the Nikon D80, D200, or D300. The same applies for Canon's Rebel xsi and 40d (with a 50d coming out soon). I usually take memory cards into Best Buy and shoot with various settings and compare the images at home.

Live View is a nice feature found on some models.
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Old 08-25-2008, 08:51 PM   #3
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I'm talking with this guy at work who just upgraded and he's recommending the Nikon D80. He said he got one on eBay about a month ago with a good lens and some other accessories, just over a thousand shutter clicks (or whatever it's called) for under $800 and he is thrilled with it so far, already shooting entirely manual (this is his first DSLR as well).
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Old 08-25-2008, 09:01 PM   #4
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A friend of mine has a Canon EOS 5D and it's by far the best of the DSLRs I have ever used. IMO, worth the extra money.
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Old 08-25-2008, 09:21 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by anitram View Post
A friend of mine has a Canon EOS 5D and it's by far the best of the DSLRs I have ever used. IMO, worth the extra money.
The 5D is amazing, but it's been out for three years now and it's starting to show its age. It's one of two or three full-frame sensor models in the Canon line, and I agree that it's worth the extra money. The other models I mentioned have a 1.6x sensor crop factor. The Canon fan sites have been eagerly awaiting some leaked specs of the 5D replacement, but no reliable info has come out yet. The 5D replacement will likely be introduced at the Photokina show in Cologne next month, and I will probably get one (with the kit lens) a few weeks after that.
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Old 08-25-2008, 09:50 PM   #6
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^

Good to know! I'm looking to get a DSLR, but I don't have the $ for it right now as I'm going to Mexico for a wedding this winter and then either Australia/Fiji or China/Vietnam in the summer for a month. So I need to save for that first, but if a new 5D is coming out, that's so tempting.
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Old 08-25-2008, 10:19 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by ntalwar View Post
The 5D is amazing, but it's been out for three years now and it's starting to show its age. It's one of two or three full-frame sensor models in the Canon line, and I agree that it's worth the extra money. The other models I mentioned have a 1.6x sensor crop factor. The Canon fan sites have been eagerly awaiting some leaked specs of the 5D replacement, but no reliable info has come out yet. The 5D replacement will likely be introduced at the Photokina show in Cologne next month, and I will probably get one (with the kit lens) a few weeks after that.
Oooo yeah that's outta my price range by about double! Maybe the company I'm working for will get one I can use.
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Old 08-25-2008, 11:01 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anitram View Post
^

Good to know! I'm looking to get a DSLR, but I don't have the $ for it right now as I'm going to Mexico for a wedding this winter and then either Australia/Fiji or China/Vietnam in the summer for a month. So I need to save for that first, but if a new 5D is coming out, that's so tempting.
Nikon just came out with the full-frame D700 (to rave reviews). It's Nikon's answer answer to the Canon 5D, plus it has the latest features. High-end lenses (such as the Canon "L" line) are recommended for high-end DSLRs, and can cost 2-3 times as much as standard lenses. The lenses are frequent targets of thieves in some countries - I've read some stories of photographers getting their lenses popped off the DSLR by teams of thieves. So extra vigilance is required while traveling.
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Old 08-26-2008, 10:44 AM   #9
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I'm talking with this guy at work who just upgraded and he's recommending the Nikon D80.
The Nikon D80 is a couple of years old. Supposedly the announcement of the Nikon D90 (its replacement) will occur soon - possibly Wednesday.

The D90 specs are (from a Nikon site):

Video recording
12,3 Mpx.
ISO 200-3.200 plus Lo1 (100) and Hi 1 (6.400)
3" 900.000 dots LCD
11 AF points
Live-View, AF contrast, Face detection
Matrix sensor for metering 420 pixels RGB
Powerful speaker (for video in review mode)
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Old 08-26-2008, 10:57 AM   #10
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If I get a new one it won't be for a month or so, so that could be it, although I'd probably be happy with a lightly used D80 if it's saving me hundreds of dollars. The things I liked about using the D40 for the past few weeks compared to my current camera have more to do with it being a DSLR in general and not all the little gimmicks relative to the exact model, but I'd rather start at the D80 or better if the price difference is not all that great. The Canon 5D looks nice but at that price there's no way. It would take me almost a year to save considering I'm getting a puppy in October and have a few trips already committed to, and I can't go camera-less for a year!

I'm not picky on megapixel as long as it's 10 or so. Video doesn't really matter either b/c I use a different camera for that or my friend's video camcorder.

Is there really anything to consider besides Canon or Nikon? Is it worth me using a Canon XSi or XTi for a few weeks for comparison?
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Old 08-26-2008, 11:42 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Liesje View Post
I'm not picky on megapixel as long as it's 10 or so. Video doesn't really matter either b/c I use a different camera for that or my friend's video camcorder.
There are probably other (subjective) differences as well between the D80 and D90 - e.g. image quality, low light performance, etc. Upcoming reviews should list all the differences besides the obvious ones.


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Is there really anything to consider besides Canon or Nikon? Is it worth me using a Canon XSi or XTi for a few weeks for comparison?
Most pros use Canon or Nikon, so I would stick with those. You have to look at the lens lineup of other brands to compare - Canon and Nikon have the best lens variety. popphoto.com reviews various brands and models. The xsi is a lot better than the xti from what I've read. Try to take some test shots before buying.
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Old 08-26-2008, 01:59 PM   #12
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Here's an interesting article on the quantum leap that has been made in the last year or so in low image noise at high ISOs. Color depth is also 14-bit vs. 10-bit. Today's sensors and processors are a lot better than those made a couple of years ago.

The New Low-Light Photography - - PopPhotoJuly 2008
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Old 08-26-2008, 02:25 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ntalwar View Post
Nikon just came out with the full-frame D700 (to rave reviews). It's Nikon's answer answer to the Canon 5D, plus it has the latest features. High-end lenses (such as the Canon "L" line) are recommended for high-end DSLRs, and can cost 2-3 times as much as standard lenses. The lenses are frequent targets of thieves in some countries - I've read some stories of photographers getting their lenses popped off the DSLR by teams of thieves. So extra vigilance is required while traveling.
I've only briefly used a Nikon which my uncle owns. He's taken all of his African wilderness photos on it and they look great. I'm not sure why but the Nikon photos look a little bit sharper to me than the Canon, not sure if I'm crazy or what. Anyway, I've always owned Canons, whether they be SLRs or point and shoots and I'd prefer to stick with a Canon. I've had no problems with them, I'm familiar with the settings and although I have no doubt that the Nikon is just as good, it's a matter of personal preference and stubborness for me.
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Old 08-26-2008, 03:03 PM   #14
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Anyway, I've always owned Canons, whether they be SLRs or point and shoots and I'd prefer to stick with a Canon. I've had no problems with them, I'm familiar with the settings and although I have no doubt that the Nikon is just as good, it's a matter of personal preference and stubborness for me.
Same here - I own a few Canon lenses and don't want to go through the hassle of switching brands. Nikon has steadily been gaining market share on Canon (which still leads) in the pro market however. Some Nikon sites noted that almost as many black lenses (Nikon) as white lenses (Canon) were being used at many Olympic venues by pro sports photographers. A few years ago (e.g. the last Olympics), it was almost all white lenses.
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Old 08-27-2008, 10:40 AM   #15
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Supposedly the announcement of the Nikon D90 (its replacement) will occur soon - possibly Wednesday.
It's official - the D90 is announced:
Nikon D90 Hands-on Preview: 1. Introduction: Digital Photography Review

http://www.nikonusa.com/Find-Your-Ni...25446/D90.html
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