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  1. #1
    Likes to play in cemeteries GraveyardMistress's Avatar
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    Question Anyone tried out the 40D AND the D300?

    I have read reviews on both cameras, but I can't find any comparison reviews.... has anyone tested out both cameras? How do they compare to each other?

    I know most people wouldn't own both, but I figured some might work at camera stores, write reviews.... things like that that may give them the opprotunity to try out both.

  2. #2
    Check out our D300 Pro Review! deckcadet's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone tried out the 40D AND the D300?

    I've had the opportunity to use the 40D, but not for very long or really give it a work out. It is a very nice and capable camera that if I were shooting Canon still, I'd have in my lineup. Our Pro Review of the 40D can give you some more information on it.

    I'm currently working on the pro review of the D300, which will hopefully help you out some.
    Harrison
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  3. #3
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    Re: Anyone tried out the 40D AND the D300?

    This was the decision I made recently. I started over 10 years ago with a Canon A2E, then an EOS 3, and then a 1N.

    And now I've switched to Nikon. I used to HATE Nikon.

    The D300 is a much better camera. The color recognition, sharpness, higher megapixels, VGA screen (looks incredible), more solid build, and deeper options all made it much more appealing to me. That's my 2 cents.
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  4. #4
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone tried out the 40D AND the D300?

    I have both here for testing right now. I've used the Canon a fair bit and am pretty impressed so far. I haven't used the Nikon much, though. I will start giving it more attention this week to see what I think. Honestly, though, I think it's more a matter of taste than anything else. One or the other may be better in some areas. But unless you have very specific needs that one fulfills better than the other, it's probably a toss-up. It's more important to make a commitment to one system or the other and start shooting. Both Nikon and Canon make great cameras.

    So is there anything in particular you're concerned about? Do you do any specific kind of shooting that you think one camera might be better at? And what are you shooting with right now? Answering those questions will help us better help you. Plus, I can try to make direct comparisons if I know what you're real needs are.
    Photo-John

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  5. #5
    Likes to play in cemeteries GraveyardMistress's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone tried out the 40D AND the D300?

    Quote Originally Posted by Photo-John
    So is there anything in particular you're concerned about? Do you do any specific kind of shooting that you think one camera might be better at? And what are you shooting with right now? Answering those questions will help us better help you. Plus, I can try to make direct comparisons if I know what you're real needs are.
    Well, here's the story.... and I'll apologize up front for rambling. :blush2: I want to invest in my first DSLR. I've done some research, and have narrowed it down to these two cameras. I know they are both probably a lot of camera for a first DLSR, but I would rather invest in one of these instead of, say, a Rebel XT or a D40 so I don't have to trade up too soon - they will both give me plently of room to grow, and I'd like for my photography to become a little more than a hobby someday

    I have been shooting with a Canon film SLR, but I don't have a whole lot invested in glass, so it wouldn't bother me at this point if I switched to Nikon. There are mainly two things that are making me undecided.. one is pro-Nikon, one is pro-Canon. I've read before opinions about how Nikon has better color than Canon, especially when it comes to skin tones and such... which is one of the things I have had a hard time with while shooting film - my colors seem to be off. But then again, that might just be me, because I am still learning (which is one of the reasons I want to switch to digital - film developing cost as you are learning gets very expensive ) I've also read that their AF is better.

    The second is that I still want to shoot with film as well.... but Nikon doesn't seem to be doing much in that aspect, where as Canon seems to have a bigger film SLR lineup (although I could get an older, used Nikon film SLR).

    So I am up in the air about what to do, and both of these cameras seem to be getting pretty good reviews. What I have mainly been shooting, besides typical family pics and stuff, is nature/wildlife, landscapes, and some sports.

    I just know that this is a big investment, and one that will be with me for a long time. I hate making decisions like this

  6. #6
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Testing

    Honestly, I really think it's a matter of personal style and taste - unless there's a particular feature or lens that one system has and you need. If you have an investment in Canon already - and that includes time invested in learning the interface - then I'd encourage you to stick with Canon. User interface is a bigger deal than you might think - especially between Canon and Nikon. It's not easy to swicth between the two systems. However, I will say I like the feel of the Nikon a little better. And I think the Nikkor 18-200 AF-S VR lens is one compelling reason to consider Nikon. The only thing I really like better about Nikon is the flash metering. I think they have been kicking Canon's butt in that area for a long, long time.

    So I just shot a skin tone test for you with both cameras at the same settings. This is a pretty unique opportunity and I've interested in the results. I don't have time to resize and post them right now, but I wanted to let you know I was on the job for you
    Photo-John

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  7. #7
    Likes to play in cemeteries GraveyardMistress's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone tried out the 40D AND the D300?

    Wow, thank you so much - for both your advice and the testing. I'll keep my eye out for the results!

  8. #8
    Likes to play in cemeteries GraveyardMistress's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone tried out the 40D AND the D300?

    I was just wondering how the pictures came out

  9. #9
    Senior Member AgingEyes's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone tried out the 40D AND the D300?

    Quote Originally Posted by GraveyardMistress
    I was just wondering how the pictures came out
    PopPhoto web site just has a comparision between these two cameras. The conclusion is: D300 gives you more bangs, but 40D gives you more bangs for the bucks.

  10. #10
    Be serious Franglais's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone tried out the 40D AND the D300?

    I have shot just one picture with the 40D (at a trade show). It looked nice, but different from Nikon - blow it up to 200% and the noise suddenly appears as coloured specles.

    Best thing to do is take the two cameras in your own hands and see which one you like more.

    As for long-term investment - check out the lens reviews. Nikon has a much wider range of excellent performers for cameras with APS sized sensors than Canon. It still looks to me like Canon is not taking this market seriously and would rather you bought a camera with a 24x36mm sensor.
    Charles

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  11. #11
    Senior Member brmill26's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone tried out the 40D AND the D300?

    Quote Originally Posted by Franglais
    Nikon has a much wider range of excellent performers for cameras with APS sized sensors than Canon. It still looks to me like Canon is not taking this market seriously and would rather you bought a camera with a 24x36mm sensor.
    Neither of these statements make sense to me.
    Nikon's wider range of APS-C ONLY lenses is more likely due to the fact that the majority of their best-selling APS-C cameras don't come with focus drives, which their old lenses lack, necessitating that they manufacture new ones. To my knowledge, APS-C only lenses aren't better than a full size lens; in fact I've read several arguments that the full size lenses on an APS-C camera is better because it uses only the best part of the glass. That's not to mention that, obviously, a full-size lens can work on APS-C, full-frame digital, or 35mm cameras. So if you want to talk about long term investment, a more flexible lens would be the better choice in the event that you get a full-frame sensor camera in the future.

    Secondly, I have no idea where the statement "Canon is not taking this market seriously" comes from. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe they are the market leaders for SLR cameras? Of those, only 2 are full frame (5D, 1Ds MKII), and 2 other 1Ds are 1.3x crops. ALL others, which represent the vast majority of sales, the XXD series and Rebel series, are APS-C.
    Brad

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  12. #12
    Be serious Franglais's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone tried out the 40D AND the D300?

    Quote Originally Posted by brmill26
    Neither of these statements make sense to me.
    Nikon's wider range of APS-C ONLY lenses is more likely due to the fact that the majority of their best-selling APS-C cameras don't come with focus drives, which their old lenses lack, necessitating that they manufacture new ones. To my knowledge, APS-C only lenses aren't better than a full size lens; in fact I've read several arguments that the full size lenses on an APS-C camera is better because it uses only the best part of the glass. That's not to mention that, obviously, a full-size lens can work on APS-C, full-frame digital, or 35mm cameras. So if you want to talk about long term investment, a more flexible lens would be the better choice in the event that you get a full-frame sensor camera in the future.

    Secondly, I have no idea where the statement "Canon is not taking this market seriously" comes from. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe they are the market leaders for SLR cameras? Of those, only 2 are full frame (5D, 1Ds MKII), and 2 other 1Ds are 1.3x crops. ALL others, which represent the vast majority of sales, the XXD series and Rebel series, are APS-C.
    Finally someone wants to discuss this! I've been bleating about it for months and nobody wanted to reply.

    Nikon have a host of DX lenses. They even added the 16-85 VR at PMA. Check out the reviews, people are pretty satisfied with them.

    The problem is Canon. Check out the reviews - even just the ones on this site - the 18-55 gets really mediocre reviews. Even the 17-85 IS does not get brilliant reviews. If you want a really good walk-around lens you have to get at least the 17-40 f4 L (or the 24-105 L). I've looked at these lenses - they are big, expensive, made-for-24x36. No comparison with the Nikon 18-70 which is cheaper, smaller, lighter and has a more useful range of focal lengths.

    Canon can make good lenses for the APS-C format - the 10-22 and 17-55 f2.8 are excellent. So why do they not make a good, economical lens to go with the 40D? Or a 18-200 IS?

    As for smaller sensors only taking the best part of the field - first and foremost any lens you put on a digital body has to have excellent performance, whether you take the center only or not. I have a couple of 24x36 lenses that are very disppointing on APS-C digital (Nikon 28mm f2.8 and 24-85 f3.5-4.5). My big f2.8 constant zooms are excellent but my designed-for-digital DX lenses are only just behind. If the lens designer has to cover a smaller image circle then he can be more daring in his design.

    I don't find that Canon acts like they have the leadership in this field. I think they're much more interested in 24x36.
    Charles

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  13. #13
    Senior Member brmill26's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone tried out the 40D AND the D300?

    All of that is your personal opinion. "18-70... has more useful focal lengths" is pure opinion, and further, entirely dependent on what you shoot. If you shoot landscapes, very useful. If you shoot racing or football, pretty useless.

    Just because you hand pick a couple Canon lenses that don't have 5 star reviews means nothing. Sounds like you feel much the same about your Nikon 28 and 24-85. Both companies make some amazing lenses, and both make some mediocre ones. Same for 3rd party companies.

    Further, comparing two of Canon's L lenses - the self-named "Luxury" line - to Nikon's DX format 18-70 is simply wrong and misleading. The L lenses are made for professionals and enthusiasts for whom IQ, durability, and weather proofing (is the Nikon DX weatherproof?) are the more important than weight, cost, or any other factor. They're purposely designed to work on 35mm because there are many pros who still prefer to shoot on film, for one, and for two, they're made to fit Canon's professional full or near-full sized bodies, which I'm sure see much of their use. Your 18-70 DX would not work on the D3 now would it? Point being, that is a very unfair and misleading "comparison."

    What do you mean "why do they not make a good, economical lens to go with the 40D?" If you refer to the kit lens, then just buy the body only, as many people do; as I did with the XTi. The new 18-55 IS is supposed to be a pretty good lens. Economical lens? Well, no one's in favor of throwing money away, but if you can afford that camera, you should be able to afford a quality lens for it. Personally I've not found a massive price discrepancy b/t similar quality Canon and Nikon lenses. In fact, part of the reason I went with Canon over Nikon was that Canon had a much cheaper high quality lens - the $70 50mm f/1.8 II.

    Why doesn't Canon make an 18-200mm IS? I don't know. Does that fact mean they don't take the market seriously or are doing a poor job? No. I think there are 3rd party manufacturers who cover that length or greater. As I understand it, the quality of a lens must make more compromises the greater its zoom range. Perhaps Canon has found such a range to be outside the limits of quality they're comfortable with. Perhaps they don't have great demand for that range of focal length in one lens. I don't know, but I don't think they fail as a company b/c they don't offer it.

    You yourself admit your 35mm lenses are better than your APS-only lenses. If you happen to like the DX lenses better, or prefer them, fine. Personally, I want to stick to 35mm size as much as I can b/c they generally have better quality, but more importantly, I have the ability to use them on a full size sensor in the future. If Canon is focused on those, fantastic by me - I hope they can sell me a full-size sensor for $700 in a couple years. Given their lower noise and higher overall IQ, I'd buy one.

    In sum, nothing in your previous post evidences that "Canon is not taking this market seriously." I see a lot of your personal opinion and some very biased "comparisons" over select models. None of that comes close to supporting such a broad accusation. And finally, you seem to imply that Canon's "interest" in full size is a negative, while many would argue that full size is better, and in the very least, I think we'd all agree full size has its advantages for certain things. Therefore I hardly find that to be a detriment; rather, that Canon are in tune with those photographers' needs as well as those who want a low-priced, APS-C sized sensor with a highly flexible lens system, like me.
    Brad

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  14. #14
    Be serious Franglais's Avatar
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    We are never going to agree but it's interesting

    If I was going to buy a 40D - being a serious amateur photographer or low-end pro - the sort of person the 40D is aimed at - what is the first lens I would put on it? I'm not interested in going to 24x36 size sensor, the APS-C size is plenty for my needs.

    I would put some sort of wide-to-tele zoom on the camera as a "walk-around" lens - the equivalent of a 28-105 or 24-105 (in film terms). What are the possibilites from Canon?

    - the 18-55 is all plastic, definitely not what I want
    - I am not impressed with the 17-85 IS from the reviews I've read. I would not feel comfortable selling pictures made with this lens

    So I suddenly have to leap to a much bigger, more expensive lens like the 18-55 f2.8 IS or the 17-40 f4 (which doesn't really meet my needs anyway). There's something missing in the middle - a good, reasonably priced lens for serious but not too intensive users. Nikon has it covered with the 18-70, 18-200 and now the 16-85.
    Charles

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  15. #15
    Senior Member brmill26's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone tried out the 40D AND the D300?

    While I think I see what you're getting at - that Canon OEM doesn't offer an APS wide angle long range zoom. Granted, but again if that's all, I must say I hardly think that's the end of the world and a legit reason to dis Canon.

    If you aren't aghast at using 3rd party lenses, Sigma makes an APS-only (your favorite) 17-70mm f/2.8-4.5 - rated 4.5 and 5 here on PR by 2 reviews, and of 8 reviews on B&H, seven gave it 5 stars, one gave it 4. B&H has it at $389. Then, of course the logical choice is one of Canon's most renown lenses, the 70-200mm L F/4, which is $580.

    I think the vast majority of serious amateur/semi-pro would find those to be "reasonably priced but not too intense," fine choices of lenses.
    Brad

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  16. #16
    Be serious Franglais's Avatar
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    It's all personal opinion

    [QUOTE=brmill26]All of that is your personal opinion. "18-70... has more useful focal lengths" is pure opinion, and further, entirely dependent on what you shoot. If you shoot landscapes, very useful. If you shoot racing or football, pretty useless.
    QUOTE]

    This is a second subject - pretty much everything we write here is personal opinion - preferably based on personal experience. The only facts we have to go on are things like -

    - reviews that are visible by both parties (like the ones in this site)
    - stuff gleaned from announcements (this lens won't work on this body etc.)
    - published sales figures (pretty rare)
    - statistics you can make yourself (I count up the number of images published on PhotoSIG to have an idea of what sales figures are like)

    I don't usually write about Canon because I don't have any. I'm just bemused by their product strategy.

    I'm pretty safe on the wide-to-tele lens being the most useful range for the majority of users. It's what all the manufacturers propose in their kits, what's on all compacts etc. But it's pretty useless for sports.
    Charles

    Nikon D800, D7200, Sony RX100m3
    Not buying any more gear this year. I hope

  17. #17
    Likes to play in cemeteries GraveyardMistress's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone tried out the 40D AND the D300?

    Quote Originally Posted by AgingEyes
    PopPhoto web site just has a comparision between these two cameras. The conclusion is: D300 gives you more bangs, but 40D gives you more bangs for the bucks.

    Nicely put ... that is a good way to look at it

  18. #18
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    Re: Anyone tried out the 40D AND the D300?

    I'd like to throw somtehing else in the fire, more on that later. Let me say I do own a 40D and a D300. The 40D was bought specifically for the 400mm F2.8 lens it stays mounted to. The price of the lens AND camera was less than Nikon's 400 F2.8 VR. Maybe it's that awsome lens, but the results with the 40D are astonishing. The Canon 400mm F2.8 lens has been proven over and over to be the 400 sports lens all else is compared to. The little I used it on other lens, it was comparable to, but the menu was very different from the D300.

    I use the D300 w/battery grip for all my sports / fast action photography. I have a D2x as a backup. One of the main reasons I bought the D300 is so I could use the larger D2x battery. I have had the BL-3 battery cover on backorder from Adorama since just after Christmas. Nikon always seems to have something that is not available. Why Nikon did not include the battery door with the battery grip is unexcusable, IMHO. One can immerse one's self pretty deep into the D300's menu options. I would not recommend this camera to a first time user unless they were "electronic capable". I use the D300 a lot.

    And then............. along came the Sony Alpha 350. This is a camera I would very much recommend to a first time user. Menu is very very simple and easy to use. The kit lens that comes with it is highly rated {as kits lenses go}. The availability of Carl Zeiss lenses is a feature available no where else unless you want manual focus on Nikon. The "live view" is really live view. I can switch to the live view mode with the flip of one switch that takes all of about .50 seconds. No screen blackout, just shoot as normal. Rear lcd screen flips out so you can use very easily on a tripod. And did I mention that image stablization is in camera so ALL lens have stablization? Did I mention that there are tons of economical lenses on the market. On the other end of that statement, the Carl Zeiss lenses also available are surpassed by nothing Canon or Nikon has? At 14.2 mega pixels one should have some "growing room" for sure. Image IQ is very very good. This camera is destined to overtake the D300 as my most used camera.

    I use the battery pack on the Sony. It uses two standard A350 batteries. Both were in stock at Sony. Using the battery pack I have about 1500 shot capacity using the viewfinder, 850 or so using the "live view" exclusively, which should get me through even an intense shooting day. Personally I use the Carl Zeiss lens for astonishing images.

    Sony will be a major player very soon. They have done a tremendous job with technology, especially no longer than they have been in the DSLR business. From all I can read, the A700 already is giving the D300 some though competition.

    My advise is to read all you can find on the three brands, then go to a store and look, feel, take some pictures with each. whichever one you decide on, learn it inside out and take pictures until you are out of breath. Enjoy!

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