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  1. #51
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    You're just putting way, way, WAY too much thought into this. You'd be 1000 times better off just getting SOMETHING and spending the effort you've wasted learning about the technical specifications on learning how to actually use the camera and take good pictures. In the DSLR market, the body is the least of your worries. The camera doesn't take pictures, the photographer does. Get whatever feels best and has a suitable number of bells and whistles for you. Image quality is relatively moot when talking about a camera body in the price range you're looking at.
    I have a camera. It takes pictures.

  2. #52
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    Jul 2007
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    Lightbulb Re:

    Quote Originally Posted by coldrain View Post
    The 17-55 f2.8 IS USM is a very nice lens. And the 400D is a very capable camera.

    I went camera shopping with my sister on saturday, and held a lot of cameras including the Nikon D40/D80, Canon 400D/30D/5D, Olympus E-510.

    One important factor for my sister was: Camera has to be light (because of her wrists).

    I own the Canon 350D, so I know what it feels like. I was quite amazed at just how similar the Nikon D40 feels. This has little to do with your thread, and more with all the D40 ravers going around... The D40 feels cheap-ish and in a way wrong, all in all the 400D gives a better feel of quality (less cheap and toy-like). And the D40X let its AF hunt on subjects it should not hunt at all on with the 70-300 VR in the store, where the 400D with 70-300 IS locked its AF with confidence...

    And what struck me again is how good the Olympus E-510 feels. Now THAT camera does have good "ergonomics".

    I do not really like the "fat" feel of a 30D/5D/D70/D80/D200, and I do not have small hands. I am not a fan of choosing a camera for the feel of the grip anyway, but for my sister and her wrists/hands it does matter.

    So, it sort of came down to a 400D and E-510. If one bases the choice purely on feel, the E-510 wins clearly.
    But all other factors (insecure about "Olympus", the small 4/3 sensor, the price of the f2.8-3.5 50-200mm) made my sister decide on the EOS 400D. With 18-55 kit-lens (to learn and see what lens she might want to upgrade to) and 70-300 f4-5.6 IS USM.

    So during the sunday I have been playing a bit with the 400D. I am not totally used to it yet, of course, but it seemed to be a nice camera to use.

    So, what can I tell you? Nice camera, great lens, light and compact combination. With a 30D... great lens, nice camera, not so light and compact. You already know the differences (3 vs 5 fps, 10.1 vs 8.2 mp, body material, 1 vs 2 wheels, spot metering, size of view finder).
    So, it is up to you to decide on what body and lens you prefer.

    30D, D80, 400D, all have their qualities.

    I sure would like to have that 17-55mm f2.8 IS USM lens...
    Thanks a lot coldrain for sharing your opinion and experience.

    I think that I now more or less already know the differences between the Canon EOS 400D, Canon EOS 30D, Nikon D80, Pentax K10D, Nikon D40, Nikon D40X, Nikon D200, Sony Alpha dSLR-A100 etc...perhaps except the new Olympus EVOLT E-510 (www.dpreview.com and the other prominant sites have not reviewed the E-510 yet...)

    I also read camera reviews from this site, www.imaging-resource.com, www.steves-digicams.com, and www.cnetasia.com.

    You're just putting way, way, WAY too much thought into this. You'd be 1000 times better off just getting SOMETHING and spending the effort you've wasted learning about the technical specifications on learning how to actually use the camera and take good pictures. In the DSLR market, the body is the least of your worries. The camera doesn't take pictures, the photographer does. Get whatever feels best and has a suitable number of bells and whistles for you. Image quality is relatively moot when talking about a camera body in the price range you're looking at.
    If you (and the few others) should think that this thread is already madness...

    Wait till I expose my other 50% of thoughts and analysis in here... (But I don't think you all guys would want to hear them anyway.)

    __________________________________________________ _______________
    Edit >>>

    Ahh...I still have much to say if I want to...(Thankfully this time I can come to the conclusions for each of the analysis.)

    Well, to put it all in short >>>

    The Nikon D80 DOES have some slight resolution advantages over the Canon EOS 30D in terms of the out of the camera JPEGs and RAW as well.

    How do I know about that??? (Dpreview have never directly compared the Nikon D80 to the Canon EOS 30D before...)

    Well, according to www.dpreview.com, the Nikon D200, which features the same image quality as the Nikon D80 resolution wise, have some slight resolution advantages over the Canon EOS 30D both in terms of the JPEG output as well as the RAW output. (Easy!)

    That solved the problem about the Canon EOS 30D versus the Nikon D80 image resolution wise; both in terms of JPEG and RAW outputs. (Nevertheless, keep in mind that the resolution advantage of the Nikon D80/D200 is only slight - but is still there.)

    The conclusion is; this matter is now pretty insignificant because I won't be able to notice the image resolution differences between the Canon EOS 30D and the Nikon D80/D200 in my photography.

    [The term resolution used in here mean "details" actually...]

    Next;

    The high ISO performance of the Canon EOS 30D is certainly a little bit better than the high ISO performance of the Nikon D80. (We are talking about full sized images here.)

    Why I said "Little bit"???

    That is because in term of noise levels, both the D80 and 30D are equal. (The 30D have more chroma noise at high ISO levels that's all; but the noise levels of both models are still more or less equal as far as I can see.) The D80's noise are all luminance. (Strange...but a pleasant surprise.)

    In terms of details at 100% view, the Canon EOS 30D certainly maintains more image details than the Nikon D80.

    Once again, I know that all this would be insignificant once I resize my photographs; which I would be doing for any high ISO shots. (The high ISO images from both cameras would look the same in terms of details and noise levels as a result...)

    This altogether solved my high ISO performance query of both dSLR cameras.

    I can now go with either one and stop worrying about the issue! (And the explanations sounded "Logical" too.)

    (I studied 100% high ISO crops from Dpreview.)
    __________________________________________________ _______________
    Finally;

    I discovered that the understated ISO values of the Canon EOS 30D to be pretty useful...

    It was night >>>

    I turned off all the lights in my bedroom just now, and left a small study light on (pointed away towards a wall to cut it's brightness). I ended up with a very challenging lighting condition as a result!

    I took my Nikon F100 SLR camera out and set the 50mm prime lens to F/2.8. (I would most likely be getting a F/2.8 zoom lens for my new dSLR camera, so I wanted to test out the F/2.8 aperture.)

    I tested out ISO 1600 (Nikon D80), ISO 2000 (Canon EOS 30D), ISO 3200 (Nikon D80), and ISO 4000 (Canon EOS 30D).

    I came to the conclusion that the extra sensitivity of the Canon EOS 30D can come in pretty handy indeed...

    The rule of thumb for my Nikon F100 SLR camera and 50mm prime lens is 1/50 (The minimum shutter speed that I will be able handhold safely without image blur.)

    I found out that there was not much difference in using ISO 1600 or ISO 2000 for my stimulated lighting condition (Which was very challenging); I was still below the 1/50 rule of thumb shutter speed regardless of ISO 1600 or ISO 2000. (I needed to go to ISO 3200) The advantage gained by using ISO 2000 was very slight.

    Once I was at ISO 3200, I could start snapping away in that really dimly lighted room of mine at 1/40 or 1/50. (More or less on the live saving rule of thumb shutter speed already) Nonetheless, there was still areas in the room where even the ISO 3200 could not give me the save rule of thumb shutter speed...[I was still around 1/20, 1/25, or 1/30...below the rule of thumb already...]

    I then set the ISO level to ISO 4000 (The Canon EOS 30D's MAX ISO level!)...using my Nikon F100 stimulation of course! (My aperture was always at F/2.8, with a Nikkor 50mm prime lens.)

    WELL! I could more or less start snapping away in every region of my bedroom where the other ISO values below could not make the shutter speed rise to the save rule of thumb value; which is 1/50 > [Though I believe that I would still be able to get away with 1/40 in an emergency!)

    Nevertheless, the ISO 4000 feature could really bring the shutter speed up to the region of 1/40 and 1/50 > in that really dimly lighted bedroom of mine! :P:P:P (It clearly had some advantages over ISO 3200 where it would mean getting in a sharp shot or not!)

    Basically what I did was to point the camera at various subjects in that really dimly lighted room of mine, and try the various ISO values...

    So far, the ISO 1600 and ISO 2000 feature was fairly limited in that really dimly lighted room of mine...However, the ISO 2000 feature did managed to bring the shutter up to the 1/50 rule of thumb where the ISO 1600 could not; for certain subjects with different lightings.

    The ISO 3200 feature was much more useful in that really dimly lighted room of mine...I started getting more 1/50 rule of thumb shutter speeds. Nevertheless, there were certain subjects that were dimmer and the ISO 3200 also wasn't quite enough...The ISO 4000 feature came in handy then...providing me with the 1/50 rule of thumb shutter speed where the ISO 3200 wasn't sensitive enough...

    From this small test of mine, I came to realize four (4) important things;

    Firstly, the understated ISO values of the Canon EOS 30D can give me the advantage in certain lighting conditions (Such as my stimulated challenging lighting condition above).

    Secondly, the ISO 3200 feature is really important for available light photography under more challenging lighting conditions.

    Thirdly, image stabilization will be invaluable for such challenging lighting conditions as the above...Invaluable for available/low light shooting in general.

    Fourthly, a larger aperture lens will seriously give me more capabilities to shoot under that really dim lighting condition of mine; or for shooting under challenging lightings in general.

    Nevertheless, I know I was getting to the extreme above...

    For my photography in general, I know I would be having plenty of shootouts under ideal lightings. I would be having plenty of shootouts under the broad daylight, or under better lighting conditions for example. To put it this way, my photography would be having a large amount of its share under more ideal lighting conditions as well...(Then just merely situated to seriously challenging lighting conditions as the above only...)

    As a result, I still need to get an "acceptable" "walk a round" solution for my photography.

    From what I can see, the Canon EOS 400D with the CANON EF-S 17-55mm F/2.8 USM IS would certainly be a good one.

    The other solutions below would be just as good as well, in my opinion:

    The Nikon D80 with the Sigma AF 18-50mm f/2.8 DC EX macro or the Tokina AF 16-50mm f/2.8 AT-X Pro DX.

    The Canon EOS 30D with the Sigma AF 18-50mm f/2.8 DC EX macro.

    The Pentax K10D with the Sigma AF 18-50mm f/2.8 DC EX macro.

    Now, I feel save going for either one of the 5 solutions/systems above.

    I would eventually end up with either one of those 5 solutions, or systems (however you call it) above.

    Regards.
    Last edited by Ben777; 07-16-2007 at 02:02 PM.

  3. #53
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    iso3200...the emphasis some place on these super hi iso's really cracks me up.

    i tell you what, as an experiment choose 100 of your favourite photos off this site in the photo gallery forum and tell me how many of those are shot at over iso800. my guess would be about 2 or 3 in 100 shots.

    another experiment ? look for the best photos you can find on flickr. not only will you not be able to tell what camera it is but you won;t see more than probably 0.5% of the best photos at anything over iso400, let alone 1600.

    some people need the performance, wedding photographers is a great example. but these people go for the 1D where the differences in iso performance is significant. not the 30d cos of a few pixel differences between it and a d80.

    out of the cams you listed above the best body+lens combination you have there is the 400D and 17-55 f2.8 IS. it wouldn;t be my choice mind you cos i could never use the rebel series cameras due to their poor feel, build and ergonomics, but i'd prefer to get the best bang for buck out of my glass rather than my body. you can always use the rebel as a second body in a year or so and upgrade to the much better build and handling, (one would assume), of a 40d or even a 30D going for a pittance.
    D800e l V3 l AW1 l 16-35 l 35 l 50 l 85 l 105 l EM1 l 7.5 l 12-40 l 14 l 17 l 25 l 45 l 60 l 75
    flickr

  4. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by coldrain View Post
    This has little to do with your thread, and more with all the D40 ravers going around... The D40 feels cheap-ish and in a way wrong, all in all the 400D gives a better feel of quality (less cheap and toy-like).

    I do not really like the "fat" feel of a 30D/5D/D70/D80/D200, and I do not have small hands. I am not a fan of choosing a camera for the feel of the grip anyway, but for my sister and her wrists/hands it does matter.
    LOL. Not a criticism, just an observation... This is pretty much what everyone else says in reverse. I don't know if I've ever heard anyone say before that they preferred the feel of a Canon over the (roughly) equivalent Nikon. Some have said they are used to the Canon and don't mind it, but I don't recall preferred. Another first.

    I can't say I got the same impression when I held the two different cameras in Costco (about two/three weeks ago). To me, I thought that Canon had closed the gap, but that the Nikon build was pretty much up to normal Nikon standards.

    The second part of the quote is very interesting, because that seems to be the very thing that often comes up when I discuss the two brands with people I meet. They like the way (as I do) the Nikon grip fills the hand.

    Each of us has a different way we like a camera to feel, and someone who likes the "thinner" feel of the Canon is just fine by me.

    To be honest, the people I usually meet are at the Nikon part of the counter, because that's where I go when I'm looking for a lens or other "parts". So, I guess I'm not likely to meet many in person who prefer the Canon grip.

    The only person I chatted with at the Orange County (CA) Fair the other day was a Nikon D50 guy. Most of the people there were P&S users. Really, the only reason I took mine was to give the new 12-24 and 70-300 a workout.
    Eric Lund
    Nikon D200
    Nikkors: 17-55mm f2.8, 18-200mm f3.5-f4.5 VR, 70-300mm f4.5-5.6 VR, 35mm f2, 50mm f1.8, 55mm f2.8 AI-S micro, 105mm f2.8 VR micro
    Other Lenses: Tokina 12-24 f4, Tamron 75-300mm f4-5.6 LD macro
    Stuff: Nikon SB800, Nikon MBD200, Gitzo 1327 Tripod w/RRS BH-55LR Ballhead, Sekonic L-358 meter

  5. #55
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    lol it's the first time i've ever heard a comment like that from users or magazine/ online reviews. the d40 feels far nicer in the hand than the rebel series. in particualr the grip which although the same size, allows you to get a nice firm grasp which the xti does not.

    the d40 has its faults. poor build quality and/ or ergonomics is not one of them.
    D800e l V3 l AW1 l 16-35 l 35 l 50 l 85 l 105 l EM1 l 7.5 l 12-40 l 14 l 17 l 25 l 45 l 60 l 75
    flickr

  6. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ben777 View Post
    Today, I have the CANON EOS 400D (Yes, the 400D!!) and the CANON EF-S 17-55mm F/2.8 USM IS in mind.

    What do you guys "Think" about this combination? (Your free thoughts are accepted .)
    Well done for settling on a combination! It's easy to over-analyse (I'm often guilty of the same problem); it's much better to concentrate on actually getting the picture.

    That said, the EF-S 17-55 is a very nice lens; I haven't had it for very long, and already it's allowed me to get photos by night that I previously needed a tripod for.

    Edit: Read Ben777's later post - and I thought you'd settled on a combination. (Oops!)

    Personally I'd go for the 400D and EF-S 17-55 - the lens is a good one, and the 400D is reputed to have good image quality even at high ISOs.
    Last edited by ayhcheung; 07-17-2007 at 09:36 AM. Reason: Read Ben777's subsequent post
    S: Panasonic LX1 and LX3
    M: Konica Minolta Dimage A2
    L: Canon EOS 30D with Canon EF-S 17-55 f/2.8 IS USM and Sigma 30 f/1.4 HSM
    Zooomr page

  7. #57
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    Aug 2005
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    SoCal
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    Quote Originally Posted by erichlund View Post
    Each of us has a different way we like a camera to feel, and someone who likes the "thinner" feel of the Canon is just fine by me.
    You don't think coldrain would let his sister buy a Nikon, do you?

    I'm pretty much over trying to recommend camera's to people. Ya, I have my preference...that's evident in the camera I bought (because I obviously didn't purchase one without thought to my needs). But, my preferences have little-nothing to do with what other peoples preferences are.

    Not only that...but, after all the debating I did (with myself) about which camera to buy, I realized I would have been happy regardless. I know this because I get to play with camera's on a daily basis at work. I like the 20D a lot. I like the D80 a lot. I'm sure I would have liked the XTi a lot...or for that matter, a D40.

    Now, Ben...You are WAY WAY WAY WAY overcomplicating things. Just make a decision and go. You remind me of another Ben who used to post the exact same overanalysis on steves-digicams many months ago. He would also often change his mind about which camera he felt was best. As far as I know, he never bought a camera.

    Are you the same Ben?!?!?!?!?!!? Please say it aint so...

  8. #58
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
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    6,590
    Eric, I was just surprised just how small the grip of the D40 actually feels, after all the hoompa about it. And that is not what I mean with cheap feel to the camera.
    To me it just feels like you have a lot of nothing in your hands, a cheap and basic look to it, and the controls lacking tactile "quality" to them.

    While the 400D/XTi's plastic does feel harder to the touch, overall the camera felt a lot less my-first-dlsr. It just surprised me a lot, just like again I was surprised just how much better the E-510 feels compared to the D40, both in material, grip, and tactile feel to the buttons/controls.

    Anyway, this was not about a camera for me, but for my sister. And the focussing reluctance of the D40 + AF-S 70-300 VR in store the day before I went with her already striked that Nikon totally off her list, the D80 being too "fat" for her hand/wrist problem.
    Canon EOS 350D, Tamron SP AF 90mm F/2.8 macro, Sigma 18-50mm F2.8 DC EX, Canon EF 70-200mm f/4 L USM, Tokina AT-X124 Pro 12-24mm F4, Soligor 1.7x C/D4 DG Teleconvertor, Manfrotto 724B tripod, Canon Powershot S30

  9. #59
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    Aug 2004
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    I was in Costco yesterday so I was going to check it out again. However, the cameras are now in a locked cabinet. Guess they're worried they might grow legs.

    Did pick up 4 more 2gb memory cards (they're so cheap now), so I'll have 8 for the trip. I can put 125+ photos (RAW) on a card, so that's 1000 before I have to download to something. If I'm going to exceed that, then I'm not having fun, I'm on a job.
    Eric Lund
    Nikon D200
    Nikkors: 17-55mm f2.8, 18-200mm f3.5-f4.5 VR, 70-300mm f4.5-5.6 VR, 35mm f2, 50mm f1.8, 55mm f2.8 AI-S micro, 105mm f2.8 VR micro
    Other Lenses: Tokina 12-24 f4, Tamron 75-300mm f4-5.6 LD macro
    Stuff: Nikon SB800, Nikon MBD200, Gitzo 1327 Tripod w/RRS BH-55LR Ballhead, Sekonic L-358 meter

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