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  1. #1
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    Canon 450D or Nikon D3100? - Help my newbie self please.

    Hi,


    I'm interested in getting in to photogrpahy. The only camera's i have at the moment are either in my mobile phone or a small out of date compact. Not only do i want to get in to photography but i'd like some good quality photos regardless of the lighting situation with proper zoom and what i have just doesn't cut it.


    So i've been looking at the budget dslr's and set my budget to around 300. Looking at what is available at this price range i've spotted the Nikon D3100 at 330. I don't really know why it's caught my eye but it has. Whilst talking to a couple of friends about this, i found that a friend wants to sell his dslr camera at 400; this is what he's offering:


    Canon EOS 450D body
    Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS (with internal stabilizer) + HOYA 58mm protective filter
    Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4.5-5.6 IS (with internal stabilizer) + HOYA 58mm protective filter + hood
    4 batteries + charger
    8 or 16Gb high speed memory card.
    Wired shutter remote control.
    Shoulder bag.


    Now i know such things like lens' cost a lot of money, so i can see that this isn't a bad price at all; which is why i'm willing to extend my budget for this.


    Doing a little googling i've found that the Nikon is about 2.5 years younger than the Canon. How much would technology have progressed between when these two were designed? I don't think the mega pixel difference would make much of a difference, if any at all. (Canon at 12.2 MP and Nikon 14.2 MP)


    My concern is, what is the product support like for dslr's? Would i find my self in a situation sometime in the near future, where the camera (thinking of the Canon specifically) would break and i would struggle/expensive to get it repaired/find replacement parts? Same with lens', would lens' continue to be around for a good while?


    Another concern is what are the reliability like on budget dslr's? Are they prone to breaking/dying? I'm thinking that if i go for the Canon, i obviously wouldn't have any warranty. To me this purchase is a lot of money.




    What do you think about these two cameras? And if you were given the choice between these two purchases which would you go for?


    Any help is much much appreciated.
    Rob

  2. #2
    Woe is me! wfooshee's Avatar
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    Re: Canon 450D or Nikon D3100? - Help my newbie self please.

    Your first paragraph mentions "regardless of lighting," which may be an unfortunate expectation. You have to have light to make an image, after all.

    That said, the 450D only goes to ISO 1600, while the D3100 goes to 3200. That's only one more stop, but then the D3100 has what Nikon calls Hi1 and Hi2, which add another two stops of light sensitivity at the expense of a higher noise level, perhaps significantly higher. Still, the Nikon comes up at least one stop better.

    The megapixel difference between those two will be unnoticable.

    You didn't mention the D3200, which is not that much more expensive than the D3100, and goes to 24MP and ISO 6400. You will be able to see the difference in 24MP, but you may discover that you need better lenses than the kit lens it will come with. When the sensor's resolution outpaces the lens's sharpness, people notice.

    The price on the Canon stuff is a good deal, I think. Once there, though, you're commited to Canons because you've got the lenses. It comes down to what lenses you want to have, and who makes them, that determines which line you go with.

    Nothing wrong with used camera stuff. I'm on my 3rd used Nikon body since 2007 right now. Still between those choices you mentioned, my answer would be neither. If you think you can spring the little bit extra for the used Canon, put that extra towards a new D3200 instead.

    And to answer your question in the other thread, would the D3100 be a good newb choice, the answer is emphatically yes. Don's no newb, but like so many of us, he's low-budget. The camera is designed specifically for folks that can't even say photography, much less spell it. You can assume the traditional shutter- or aperture-priority modes, or even fully manual control, but its programmed modes are designed to be a "menu" you can choose from for the type of picture-taking you're doing at the time.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Anbesol's Avatar
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    Re: Canon 450D or Nikon D3100? - Help my newbie self please.

    good quality photos regardless of the lighting situation with proper zoom and what i have just doesn't cut it.
    I think "regardless" gets into hyperbole. Part of taking good quality photos is correctly manipulating or taking advantage of light in specific ways, using the opportunities of light like a landscape photographer who shoots at dawn and dusk. But, at the same time there is certainly gear which will achieve faster shutter speeds, both through ISO and through lens speed. The lens speed will do much more for improving low-light and/or fast shutter than the ISO does, but the ISO is the other part of the equation. If you want really fast lens, you're getting into primes (or fixed focal length lens), which are far and wide superior in performance to similar equivalent zoom ranges.

    My concern is, what is the product support like for dslr's?
    Well, as for fulfilling their warranty obligations, they all perform pretty fairly. Also, the internet has an enormous knowledge base for things like DSLR troubleshooting. Even this forum is a great place to discuss issues you're having with your gear, and other people can help to diagnose an issue you may be having. Most times when I hear of DSLRs breaking or having some kind of problem, it was from user error and not flimsy manufacturing.

    Would i find my self in a situation sometime in the near future, where the camera (thinking of the Canon specifically) would break and i would struggle/expensive to get it repaired/find replacement parts? Same with lens', would lens' continue to be around for a good while?
    Canon's EF and EF-S lens will be here for a LONG time to come! Do not worry about the worlds supply of lens! Abundance!!

    Another concern is what are the reliability like on budget dslr's? Are they prone to breaking/dying? I'm thinking that if i go for the Canon, i obviously wouldn't have any warranty. To me this purchase is a lot of money.
    When these DSLR's go out, unless it is specific part which goes out, they are generally not worth repair. They are sturdily manufactured and most people usually report that they are more solid than they had expected after first using them.

    What do you think about these two cameras? And if you were given the choice between these two purchases which would you go for?
    Between just those two cameras? The Nikon has video recording and higher ISO, other than that, they are basically clones of each other. If it were me, and I had a tight budget, I would look on the used market for a pro-grade, like the canon 50D or Nikon D90, instead of getting a new low-end.
    - Charlie

    Feel free to edit and repost my work as a part of your critique.

  4. #4
    Senior Member volks's Avatar
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    Re: Canon 450D or Nikon D3100? - Help my newbie self please.

    My 2 cents worth. Both brands are very good, so you really can't go wrong with either. Both brands have lenses that you want now and in the future.
    Check out the shutter count on the Canon. You don't want to buy a camera that is close to it's shutter count life.
    A 12 to 16 mp camera will serve you well. 24 mp is nice but not necessary for great quality photos. Quality lenses will play a far more important role.
    If within my budget, I would opt for newer camera, like the d3100 or d3200 or Canon equivalent.
    Volker
    Nikon D7200
    Nikon P7100
    Nikon 16-80/2.8-4 ED VR
    Nikon 55-200 VR II

    Keeping it light and simple.

  5. #5
    banished Don Schaeffer's Avatar
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    Re: Canon 450D or Nikon D3100? - Help my newbie self please.

    Brand loyalty is a powerful thing when it comes to cameras. Once you chose you will defend your choice to the death. There is a big brand loyalty war between Canon and Nikon, has been for years. Frankly, in spite of my strong personal and irrational bias, it probably makes very little difference. These are the two major DSLR brands. Other upstart brands (curse them) are also available.

  6. #6
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    Re: Canon 450D or Nikon D3100? - Help my newbie self please.

    Hello! If it would help.. I'm using a NIKON D3100. And very happy with the photo quality it captures.

  7. #7
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Canon 450D or Nikon D3100? - Help my newbie self please.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dan143 View Post
    Hello! If it would help.. I'm using a NIKON D3100. And very happy with the photo quality it captures.
    Thanks for commenting, Dan. I reviewed the Nikon D3100 a couple of years ago and I think it's one of the best DSLR camera values out there. No - it's not the fanciest camera but it's certainly not going to get in the way of taking good pictures - especially if you're a beginner or you're on a tight budget.

    Please write a review for your D3100. User reviews are the foundation of this site and people rely on them to help them choose the right camera. I know we could use some more reviews for the D3100 and every review counts. Here's a link to that review page:

    Nikon D3100 Reviews >>

    Thanks for sharing and thanks in advance for your review
    Photo-John

    Your reviews are the foundation of this site - Write A Review!

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