Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Tale as Old as Time...

No, I'm not talking about Beauty and the Beast here, I'm talking about the ever repeating question of Canon or Nikon(or Pentax, or Leica, or Samsung, or Sony, or Finepix or... OY! too many options...)?

I mentioned in my last post that I'm looking at getting a camera for graduation.
My only problem is that I don't know what camera should I get.
I've been using the Pentax K10 D and it has done a really great job so far, but I feel limited with it. I'm always worrying about having noisy images with high ISO or blurry ones because LCD display isn't accurate(displays images which are WAY sharper than they really are). Which, I know, has to do with the compression, but seriously, NO fun. The AF isn't very accurate either - not that I use it very often anyway.

Something I read a long time ago on Justin's blog was that the Canon EOS 5D shot nicely in the low light. "ISO 1600 looked more like 400". That was amazing to me because when I shoot at ISO 1600 it looks more like ISO 1600 - very noisy. My friend Josh and also Brian Delaurenti, use Canon and have really great results.

I also read that Nikon does well in low light - Mike, from Mike's Right Brain, shot THIS at ISO 6400!! (I didn't even know that existed!) But that may have had a lot to do with the high caliber D3 he was using (which is totally out of my price range).. Archie also uses a Nikon (D300) and he does really well with it. So, there are two votes there - also in Nikon's favor is the size of the LCD.

I like the Pentax interface, because Im used to it. I'm not too keen on Canon's(maybe because I'm not used to it). I like Nikon's SLR interface (or whatever you want to call it on a film camera), but I've never played with a Nikon DSLR.
I'm kinda limited in exactly what I know, because I don't hang out with enough real photographers on a regular basis. So I kinda rely on you all to mention things(here or in your own blogs) that I can draw from.

Something that I'm really wanting, as well, is a camera that will allow me to have a lens with incredibly low f stop. I've been playing with that lately and I'm loving it, but I'm only able to go 5.6 and I want to go soo much lower... Then I take a lot of shots of kids and candids so, shutter speed is def a factor(is this more of a lens thing?).

Another factor is that I have a lot of Nikkor Lenses for the SLR my dad bought back in the day.t I'd love to be able to use them with the DSLR that I end up getting - My dad suggested that maybe there is a way that I could get adapter rings? I have to do a lot of research to do, so any shared knowledge would be lovely ;)


don said...

I like my experience with Nikon because of the wide compatibility of older lenses with newer cameras. For general reviews of all makes of cameras (it can get bewildering) I recommend you check "our reivews" at
Steve's Digicams: http://www.steves-digicams.com/
For Nikon compability take a look at:
All compatibility charts are confusing so individual lenses must be checked with a specific digital SLR.
Above all, go into a camera store and handle every potential camera for fit, size, weight, etc.

Sebastian said...

Get a body you can afford in Canon or Nikon. Get a wide lens from b&h and an SD card and youre off! Seriously it doesnt matter. Just pick one or the other go to a store and hold a canon and then hold a nikon, which one feels better in the hand? Pick that one. Then go shoot.

http://dpreview.com is another great one if you like to agonize over whether or not you need that ISO 25600 that the Nikon D700 has or if some sort of vibrating sensor is more needed than a steam powered LED graphical whizzlepatter. :-D

Sebastian said...

Also to add that you need a PRIME lens if you want to go wide like F 1.4. I'd venture to say that most zoom lenses usually suck and only go to 5.6. My 75$ (brand new) canon prime will outdo most zooms. Nikon has one as well about the same.

Archie | Whateverland said...

I will agree with sebastian that you can't go wrong with either nikon or canon. Whichever choice you make though, think of it as a long term choice because even though the camera bodies keep advancing every 1.5 years, lenses tend to be something that you'll keep for 10-15 years and use on every body.

I went with the Nikon route since my photography hobby started with Nikon 35mm AF and MF cameras. I also liked the ergonomics better since i could never get my small hands to comfortably handle a Canon body...

You are welcome to play with my d300, d200, or d100 to give them a try :)

Justin Gaynor said...