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Equipment Budget DSLR: Nikon D3000 vs Canon EOS 1000D

Discussion in 'Photography, Art & Design' started by cjmUK, 13 May 2010.

  1. cjmUK

    cjmUK Old git.

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    My existing camera is 5 years old now and has a dodgy battery compartment so I'm looking at a replacement.

    When it comes to photography, I'm very much the novice, as is my wife, but we are both looking towards getting into some 'proper' photography and are looking at an entry-level DSLR.

    I've read a few reviews but I'm still undecided. Budget is a big issue; I think my limit really is £350.

    I seem to be alternating between the two camera's mentioned - the D3000 and 1000D.

    The Nikon seems to fit the bill well and is generally well respected; it's clearly not as good as its more upmarket siblings, and a lot of people say to spend the extra for a D5000 but it's too much at this moment. It lacks a live view mode, but does have image stabilisation (IS) and it is easy to use. Most people say it has typical Nikon quality, yet the odd person says its the worst Nikon ever made!

    The Canon is also generally well respected and although it doesn't have the bells and whistles of its bigger siblings it is apparently worthy of the Canon EOS name. It's slightly more expensive with a non-IS lens (£370), an the IS lens would make it about £450 which is too steep for me. However, it does have Live View... apart from the odd scenario where it would be essential, I could happily survive without it, though it would be useful for previewing. The wife would probably use all the time - she seems to prefer the screens to the viewfinder.

    I don't imagine I'll be buying any additional lenses of any other gadgets in the short term, so the features of the base camera are of primary concern.

    What do our resident DSLR experts think? Anyone got any experience of either of these?

    Any other alternatives in this bracket that I should consider?
     
  2. supermonkey

    supermonkey Deal with it

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    What kind of pictures are you looking to take? And what do you mean when you say that you're interested in getting into "proper" photography? You said that you don't intend to buy additional lenses or other gadgets, so based on the type of pictures you want to take one of the higher-end point and shoot models might suit your needs better than lugging around a DSLR.

    Judging by the reviews at DPReview, it looks like the 1000D has a slight edge in noise - especially in the higher ISO range. This may be a consideration if you intend to take a lot of photos in low light situations.

    You mentioned that the D3000 has image stabilization, but from what I've read it lacks in-body IS. If that's the case then there's not much difference between the two.

    In my opinion, live view isn't necessary. It drains the battery, and for regular photography I don't think it offers much benefit over the viewfinder. Some people find that it helps nail down focus in macro shots, but I think a little extra patience is all that is needed. Ultimately it's a matter of opinion, but I think most people don't need it.

    If you're split between those two, then the best thing you can do is go to a camera shop and handle each one. Get a feel for the camera itself, how much it weighs, where the buttons are, and what the menu looks like. Unless you're thinking of investing in the system and buying a bunch of gear in the near future, I honestly think either camera will work just fine. It'll come down to which one you feel comfortable using.
     
  3. Silver51

    Silver51 I cast flare!

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    What supermonkey said. You can pour over stats all day, but getting hands on in a shop will help you with the final decision.

    Also, I tend to use live view more when I'm out in the field to adjust aperture and exposure. It's not necessary, but a useful tool if you've got it.
     
  4. cjmUK

    cjmUK Old git.

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    We're intending to take the usual variety of photos... family (indoor and outdoor), scenery, action pics (Kids tearing around the place etc).

    At the moment, we won't be doing and long-range snooping, panoramic scenery shots or close-ups of hairs on a spider's legs.... We aren't skilled enough for a start.

    *Initially* we won't be needing any additional lenses because we won't really have the skill to use them. Given that it will be our first DSLR, that we are still learning, and that budget is an issue, we won't be buying any additional bits and bobs... a base camera + lens kit.

    In time, I can see us buying the odd additional lense or filter, probably an external flash... but we won't ever be carrying around a 50lb bag loaded to the hilt with photography goodies.

    So DSLR = good, but let's walk before we can run.

    It is conceivable that if we get to grips with it, we might upgrade to a more mid-range model, when finances permit.

    I'd read as much, but I'm not really qualified to judge how important it is. I've read that both camera's (and probably all other entry level ones) are easily out-shone by their superior siblings, and particularly in low-light situations, but I'm expecting that both of these camera's will be superior to your average compact - certainly once we have learned to get the best out of them.


    As I understand it, it is not a case of one being better than the other:

    In-Lens Systems -
    Advantages
    1. More effective with longer lenses
    2. You don't pay for it except with the lenses you need it for
    3. You see the stabilization effects through the viewfinder

    Disadvantages
    1. More expensive, especially if you want the feature in more than one lens
    2. Not available with all lenses

    In-Body Systems -
    Advantages
    1. Works with every lens you mount to the body, and may be the only option for many shorter and faster lenses
    2. Less expensive, especially if you want the feature with more than one lens

    Disadvantages
    1. Progressively less effective with longer and longer lenses
    2. Progressively harder to implement with larger image sensors.

    One alternative camera was the Sony Alpha A330 but although it is regarded as a decent-enough camera, it had some drawbacks compared to these other two. However, it did have in-body IS, but I think it is the only budget DSLR that does. I'm not beyond convincing, but I'd all but discounted this model.

    That was my thinking (not sure if the wife will agree, but she will adjust if necessary!).

    I think there is a LCE store in a nearby town that might stock both models...

    On the one hand, I think the IS in the Nikon VR lens would be useful... but on the other hand, I can buy the Canon with Live View and upgrade the lens later... but then again, if I'm sticking with a middle of the road 18-55 lens for a while, do I really be wanting the hassle of buying IS one and having to flog the non-IS one on the cheap...

    Regarding low-light, the Canon edges the Nikon, but the IS in the Nikon can be useful in low-light situations...

    Decisions, decisions...
     
  5. Tim S

    Tim S OG

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    In the last DSLR labs test we did (February 2010), the 1000D came up trumps. The verdicts were as follows:

    1000D 18-55 IS kit
    D3000 18-55 VR kit
    It depends how you feel because a lot of the more expensive Nikon bodies are better than the Canon alternatives. If you get heavily invested into one system, it's difficult to switch without selling pretty much everything. I went with Canon early on because all of my friends used Canon, so I could borrow their lenses when I wanted/needed, but in some ways I wish I was with Nikon. I've got some lenses that I don't want to get rid of though and the 5D2 is (mostly) excellent bar a few niggles. Ultimately, it's horses for courses and both systems are very good these days.

    I tend to use Live View quite a lot at the moment, mainly for manual focusing, depth of field previews and ensuring filters are correctly positioned. It's taken the lottery out of manual focusing to ensure maximum depth of field in my landscape images, so I don't think I could do without it now I've got it. I barely use it when the camera isn't mounted on a tripod though.

    The D3000 isn't a bad camera by any stretch of the imagination, it's just not quite as good as the 1000D. It's the D60 successor and still uses the D60's controls, which were its weakest point unfortunately. There's only dedicated buttons for exposure compensation, AE/AF lock, flash and self-timer - everything else has to be accessed via menus. I'd pop down to the shop and see which one feels more comfortable in your hands. :)
     
  6. eddie_dane

    eddie_dane Used to mod pc's now I mod houses

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    I'm going to go out on a limb based on what pictures you say you want to take and suggest a used Nikon D90, 35mm f1.8 lens and a cheap flash like a SB-400. The only time I didn't regret paying full price for the latest body is when it had a feature I absolutely had to have (In my case, it was the D700). Conversely, I have never regretted buying a lens, unless I cheaped out and bought a lens I ended up replacing a year or two later for a better version. But even then, I made back about 85% of my money.

    You could easily translate the Canon equivalent of that bundle, they both make great cameras. When I was buying my first dSLR, I went to the store and picked up the entry level Canon and Nikon and ended up getting the Nikon based on how well it fit in my hand. The Canon actually hurt my hand but that is completely subjective. It very well could have gone the other way.

    If you really get into photography, you WILL spend money on lenses, but you will find bodies falling by the wayside as time passes so I wouldn't get hung up on any particular feature. The features people can't seem to live without today didn't exist just a short time ago when people were taking cracking shots so I tend to pinch a grain or two grains of salt between my fingers.
     
    Last edited: 14 May 2010
  7. flapjackboy

    flapjackboy New Member

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    Have you considered a bridge camera like the Fuji HS10 or S200 EXR?

    These provide SLR-like handling and will provide pretty much all the focal range you will need if you're just starting to get into the higher quality end of digital photography without you needing to fork out money for extra lenses.

    The other advantage is that if you do decide to later get a DSLR, you've still got a blindingly good camera for times when you don't want to take the full DSLR kit with you.
     
  8. Archtronics

    Archtronics Well-Known Member

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    Hey just to let you know if you dont mind second hand Iv been watching prices on ebay as I to am buying a new camera and Iv noticed that The canon 450d sells for 360ish I even saw one with a sigma lense and a few extras go for 350.

    Mark
     
  9. Archtronics

    Archtronics Well-Known Member

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    Double post argh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  10. whisperwolf

    whisperwolf New Member

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    go into the shop and handle them. I went in expecting to buy a canon, and hated the feel of it. also don't discount the Sony, less third party lenses but pretty sure they use minolta lenses. so you can pick up some of the older glass and have OS thanks to it being built in to the body.
     
  11. teamtd11

    teamtd11 *Custom User Title*

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    I got the 1000D and its a brilliant camera, but i don't think you can go wrong with any entry dslr the best thing is to buy what fits best in your hands.
     
  12. Lance

    Lance Ender of discussions.

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    I went for the D5000 (slight upgrade on the 3000). I really rate it however I wouldn't get it with the lense it comes with.

    I'd opt for the 18-105mm lense that would cost you about £40 extra, but thats a lense you can use on its own for a long time, I have the 18-55 and a 55-200 that I have to swap between, real pain in the ass.


    What swung it for me was that Nikon have never changed their lense couplings so you can buy a 40 year old lense and use it on your brand new camera.

    The D90 as suggested above would be a good choice if you don't mind the weight, as its the closed you can get to a pro level without paying in the thousands, but it does push your prices up now. The main difference is that it has an inbuilt autofocus, so you can use lenses without the motor in it, cheaper in the long run.

    I had a go with the cannon the other day and I have to say that I was impressed with how small and light it was. Although this was after many a glass of champers.
     
    Last edited: 17 May 2010
  13. cjmUK

    cjmUK Old git.

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    I've ended up buying the Canon 1000D, mainly because I want the (slightly) superior low-light capability and the Mrs wanted Live View. But I did want image stabilization, so I've bought a camera body and a separate 18-55 IS lens... should be arriving tomorrow!

    I think this kit should cover us for a good while, while we learn what the hell we are actually doing.
     
  14. eddie_dane

    eddie_dane Used to mod pc's now I mod houses

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    congrats cjm. now start posting pics
     
  15. cjmUK

    cjmUK Old git.

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    Whoa! Easy tiger...

    Even once I've learned the mechanics, it will be a while before I learn the 'art'! [if ever]
     
  16. Tim S

    Tim S OG

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    Best of luck and I hope to see some of your results as you get to grips with it :thumb:
     
  17. bigsharn

    bigsharn Officially demotivated

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    If you can get hold of a cheap one, a 55-200 would be a good idea as well for the holiday shots, like on the beach or up on brimham rocks (just a local example)

    You can get hold of one for £75 if you're lucky


    EDIT: Just found a 70-300 for £90 on Fleabay
     

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