Canon Rebel XTi (400D) vs. Nikon D80

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by eddx, Sep 3, 2006.

  1. eddx macrumors regular

    eddx

    Joined:
    May 12, 2005
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #1
    I want an upgrade from my Canon compact as I am a very serious hobbyist photographer with an eye for part time professional work. My average shutter count on my Canon Powershot S60 (5 megapixels) is over 1,000 images a month.

    Time for a D-SLR (heard it all about a million times before I know)

    I need either a Nikon (preferable but expensive) or a Canon (cheaper but less "professional")


    So why the Canon Rebel XTi (or 400D if your in the UK)...

    Its 10 megapixels and takes Compact flash, which is the same card as my old system BUT I would need a new 2GB memory card anyway so thats in my budget. My dad has the original rebel (300D) and has a sigma 100-300mm zoom lens but the quality is very poor in the image it produces and the auto-focus on the lens is slow and inaccurate.

    So why the Nikon D80...

    Its also 10 megapixels but seems to have a better build (seperate LCD display for camera data for example). It takes SD cards which are cheaper but in general lenes cost a lot more, as do other add-ons and extras (which Nikon seems to have more of) like flash units and wireless / gps packs. I think I could afford this camera with the 35 - 135mm lens kit. (could be 55-135mm)


    I may one day (after uni) be a full time professional photographer and want to invest in the right system from the start. I cant afford a Nikon D200 but could maybe push the budget for a Canon EOS 20D (but would have to get the basic lens. The pro photographers I know of all seem to use Nikon systems, only sports photographers and hobbists seem to be in the Canon camp.

    You will probably all recommend Canon which I think would be great for me for the next 2 or 3 years but after this who knows what systems and options and features high range cameras will have in 5 or 10 years when this new system may become a backup system. Travel is VERY important to me and I will be travelling a lot with this camera so weight is important, but I think they are similar weights.

    From my research these are two VERY new camera systems (so new no shops have the models yet) but I am looking to buy between now and christmas. I have £1,000 (nearly $1,900 - probably around $1,500 by the time u take into consideration the cost of stuff in the UK)

    What do you recommend? Nikon or Canon? and why?
     
  2. milozauckerman macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2005
    #2
    The D80 will have a better (brighter) viewfinder and a sturdier build. But it doesn't seem to be shipping until the tail end of October and there could be delays even after that, given Nikon's track record.
     
  3. Clix Pix macrumors demi-goddess

    Clix Pix

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    #3

    Actually, Ritz Camera (online) has the D80 in stock now (limited quantities) and is shipping....
     
  4. eddx thread starter macrumors regular

    eddx

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    May 12, 2005
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #4
    Ritz Camera do seem to ship to the UK but I couldnt figure out the cost. Why is the Nikon D80 with a 18-135mm lens kit $1,300 shipped in the USA but $1,900 in the UK shipped (£1,000).

    So I could fly to the US and get the camera for the same price as I could go to a shop to get it here. $600 cheaper! thats crazy money discount!

    Looks like I will have to wait till October for either camera to come out here unless I find someone going to the US soon.

    So far Nikon winning over the Canon! Anyone else give me a reason for the Canon?
     
  5. iGary Guest

    iGary

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    Location:
    Randy's House
    #5
    I think Nikon makes better cameras and Canon makes better glass.

    I just wanted to say that for some reason.

    Oh, and David Ritz is Devil Spawn.
     
  6. eddx thread starter macrumors regular

    eddx

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    #6
    So Nikon body and Sigma glass? or a Sigma even worse than Nikon in terms of lens quality, I was using a Sigma lens today to shoot the red arrows on a borrowed D-SLR and the lens is so poor its a wonder I even got a decent photograph!

    Is it me or is Nikon glass over priced?!
     
  7. iGary Guest

    iGary

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    Location:
    Randy's House
    #7
    All glass is overpriced. :D

    I'm a Canon guy, but Nikon is doing so many neat things lately, I have been tempted to hock my whole outfit (no small feat) and get a D2X with all the goodies and lenses...but I wait for the fall season to see what Canon has up its sleeve.

    All depends with Sigma - I had a 12-24 that I absolutely loved - an awesome lens. I have an 8mm fisheye from them that is pretty crappy now. I think they make nice lenses, but you have to pick and choose based on what others have experienced. I think some of their gear is just as good or better than Canon or Nikon glas and some of it is unusable crap.
     
  8. beavo451 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2006
    #8

    You make it sound as if Nikon glass is not good. Nikon glass is excellent. Better than Canon? Sure. Worse than Canon? Sure. Personally I don't notice a practical difference. But Nikon glass being crap? I don't buy that. Remember a long time ago, Nikon made lenses for Canon.
     
  9. Zeke macrumors 6502

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    Oct 5, 2002
    Location:
    Greenville, SC
    #9
    I would have to disagree about the most pros use Nikon. I've actually seen quite few pros who use Nikon (wedding photographers, nature, etc...) but hock that up to my just not seeing them. I would venture it's pretty evenly split so find the camera that you like the build of. The XTi is going to feel kinda cheap, but have nice features. I haven't personally felt the D80 but would be it's comparable to the 20d in feeling quite solid.

    You can pick up a 20d for a great price now so that's what I would go for. It takes great pictures, its noise performance is great, and it saves the money for what really makes the pictures great...glass. Get a Tamron 28-75 2.8 or 17-55 2.8. Great lens for a comparatively bargain price.
     
  10. milozauckerman macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2005
    #10
    hmmm, B&H listed a ship date of 10/30 a couple of weeks ago, must have been a place-holder or screwup.

    I prefer Canon glass myself, the pro-sumer primes (50/1.4, 28/1.8, etc.) have the excellent USM system, which makes for quieter, faster autofocus. Better build quality and feel to the focus ring if you choose to work manually, as well.

    The upscale Nikon bodies have traditionally drawn more interest (F100, F5/6) for the matrix metering and distance-based flash (I forget what that system is called), but Canon bodies are equally good in most cases.
     
  11. Silentwave macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    May 26, 2006
    Location:
    Gainesville, FL
    #11
    And the D80 has Nikon's excellent 3D Color matrix Metering II system (complete with spot meter :D), with the i-TTL flash system including wireless command functions for up to two independent banks of external speedlights.
     
  12. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #12
    I just wanted to point out that since Canon has like 50-60% of the DSLR market, and Nikon has 25%, you're likely going to get 2/3rds of people here telling you to go with Canon, and 1/3rd telling you to go with Nikon. :p

    Really? That Canon DSLR is supposed to take nice photos.


    I'd say more pros are in the Canon camp if they're shooting sports, but other than that and possibly several other areas, it'll be around the same. I love my Nikon bodies, and feel that the lenses are similar enough in quality to not make much of a practical difference as long as you can get the focal lengths, aperture size, and overall optical quality from the lenses you think you'll want. :) I do like the lenses Nikon is releasing though. They're doing great.

    I just shot some photos of a sunset with a Canon shooter I met while I was there. I saw him and said hello. He saw that I was shooting with a Nikon, and he said, "Oh....Nikon. You're lucky." He continued to talk to me about how he goes there quite often, but all I was wondering was, "Why am I 'lucky?'" ;)


    Then we can't give you any advice. ;)


    I'd get the Nikon D80 over the Canon 400D. I don't know about the 400D's build quality, but the 350D felt poor in comparison to.....well......just about every Nikon, Olympus, and Pentax camera I have held. It's even cheap compared to other Canon's, and I don't think it's just because of the low price of the 350D. I just think they made a mistake. I don't think the 400D will feel as cheap, but I could be wrong. Also, it'll still be too small and too light.

    I also travel a lot, and I have a Nikon D50, which is great. The D80 is making me jealous, though. ;)
     
  13. extraextra macrumors 68000

    extraextra

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2006
    Location:
    California
    #13
    If the 300D is having problems focusing with the Sigma 100-300, it may be the lens. And, Sigma tend to have problems like backfocusing, front focusing, the right side of the image is blurry, etc (it's sort of hit-and-miss with them, but if you send the lens back they'll fix it and it'll work like a charm).

    I have a Rebel XT. I lusted after a Nikon but somehow ended up with a Canon.. uh. I love my camera but I still kind of want a Nikon. If you want to feel "professional" and have a more "substantial" camera in terms of build, weight and ergonomics, then I'd definitely go Nikon. The Canon 400D is very small, and very light. Some say it's almost comparable to a point-and-shoot. If size and weight matter to you (in terms of portability) then the Canon might be for you.

    I'd say right now go for the 400D or D80, and then in a few years down the road, make it your backup camera and then upgrade to the 5D or D200.
     
  14. sjl macrumors 6502

    sjl

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    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #14
    I have to second this. When I bought my 20D, I had three DSLRs in the knockoff: the 5D, the 20D, and the 350D. I quickly put the 5D out of the running (didn't want to buy an external flash at the time, and it was too expensive for my budget). On paper, I couldn't see much of a difference between the 20D and the 350D. It wasn't until I held the 350D in my hand (with a heavy lens attached) that I settled on the 20D; it just wasn't solid enough.

    Very happy with the 20D. Although I am lusting after the 5D, I can't afford it (nor justify it, since the 20D does everything I want it to); maybe if I win the lottery ... :D

    I'd very, very strongly recommend that you go into a camera store and physically hold the cameras in your hands before you make a decision.
     
  15. law guy macrumors 6502a

    law guy

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    Jan 17, 2003
    Location:
    Western Massachusetts
    #15
    Why iGary, why go and say it... Nikon builds a fine Thailand package around the sony-supplied Matrix image processing components as well as the sony image sensor, but I have come to like Canon camera bodies much more. That said, even though I prefer the in-house R&D results that have produced two different full-frame sensors, image processing systems, and the Japan-based production of the cameras, I would rather have a 30D than a 400D for the body features that I find more important, but still find my sister's 350D very usable compared to my 30D and would prehaps prefer it with a compact lens for some travel.
     
  16. fitinferno macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2005
    Location:
    London, UK
    #16
    I note this because it is absolutely NECESSARY. When I was purchasing my first DSLR (which kudos to the ppl of MacRumours for helping me out on--I've yet to update my request for advice thread), I really thought I'd wind up getting a Canon 350d...but before getting it off the net, I went to PC World to test it out.

    And oh my god did it ever cramp my hands. I could barely hold it for 5 minutes without getting uncomfortable, it was hard to imagine a whole day of shooting. Because these cameras are not out yet and I understand your excitement to get one asap, at least go out and try out a Nikon D70s and a Canon 350d.

    My money's on Nikon...it just feels so much better and at the end of the day, you want a camera that you are going to feel is part of you, otherwise you just won't use it.
     
  17. lucero1148 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2006
    #17
    From my experience as a photojournalist I've seen more pros with Canons than Nikon. MOst of them like myself used to shoot with Nikons but switched because Canon's camera bodies and lenses provided superior overall performance. Thats due to the lense systems were able to focus faster and more accurately than Nikon and the pro bodies had easier more intuitive controls. Nikon has improved quite a bit in the last 4 years, but still doesn't have a full frame sensor or the has anything close to the resolving power of Canons 12 and 16 megapixel cameras.

    I use a EOS 1D, 8 MP file size, but if I was to buy another camera it would be a 5D because its a 12MP file.

    AS far as glass goes both Canon and Nikon are equally good. You wouldn't be able to tell the difference between the 2 of them on image quality.
     
  18. stagi macrumors 65816

    stagi

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2006
    #18
    I have been a pro for over 7 years and it seems like the canon/nikon debate is always pretty split from other pro's. Lately though it has seemed that more pro's in my area are going with Canon. I have always preferred canon to nikon. I like the layout of the camera's better and have shot with them ever since I started out in high school. I also do think the Canon glass is better than the Nikon glass, but that is always up for debate and when you compare the pro series in both companies they are very similar.
    In testing both out I have also felt that the auto focus for some of the canon systems were a little bit quicker and more accurate.

    I would start out with a canon 30D, it's an awesome camera for a good price.

    -- Mark
     
  19. Silentwave macrumors 68000

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    Gainesville, FL
    #19
    Wow.

    While it's true there has been a trend towards Canon recently, Canon has been pushing kickbacks to news agencies and the like- free equipment and so on.

    In reality, you can get similar performance out of either system.

    Most people I talk to tend to find Canon pro cameras far from intuitive in terms of controls. Big time. two small buttons and a wheel to change ISO or drive mode, on/off switch at the bottom....Canon's pro line still uses old NiMH batteries with far less shots per charge and far greater weight than Nikon's Li-ion batteries- the D2 series cameras achieve in excess of 2,000 shots per charge, now more thanks to an even more powerful battery released in June.

    But it is your last statement that has no basis in fact, only advertising.

    Nikon's D2X/Xs has a 12.4mp CMOS DX format sensor with a pixel density noticeably greater than anything Canon has to offer. It is not MP but pixel density that determines the resolving power of a sensor. Thanks to this actual physical advantage, the D2X/Xs resolve more detail than Canon's 1DS MkII and 5D.
     
  20. cgratti macrumors 6502a

    cgratti

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    #20

    Do you know anyone in the US who can get the camera and ship it to you?
     
  21. Jay42 macrumors 65816

    Jay42

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    Jul 14, 2005
    #21
    I think it seems like most people like the D80 on paper. The one problem I see with the 400D is the lack of a settings LCD. That means the color LCD is on a lot of the time, and will significantly reduce battery life. Also, its tough to justify spending $800 on a body without a spot meter. And why does Canon insist on only one thumb dial?

    The D80 looks excellent, but it is still more expensive. Also I personally prefer Canon's lens system. There are simply more choices. There is something to be said with going with the biggest company. Also, while both bodies shoot at 3fps, the 400D has a deeper buffer.
     
  22. vectormasked macrumors member

    vectormasked

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    #22
  23. eddx thread starter macrumors regular

    eddx

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    #23
    I will definately do this, I would like it before November but I think I'm going to wait and try the two bodies in my local camera store before I rush into this, its a huge jump into photography and one that could effect my whole (future) career in digital photography.
     
  24. eddx thread starter macrumors regular

    eddx

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    #24
    Simply put...no I dont, I could probably email a couple of people but I dont know how I would go about getting it shipped and paying the person, I would have to really trust them, plus the hassle of any possible import taxes etc.

    But $600 saving on the Nikon D80 is definately worth it, even if it cost $50-100 to get the person to ship the beast.

    Check this out for rip off UK prices...my local camera shop (a national chain called Jessops) sell 1GB SD cards at between £85 - £124 (thats $160-240!!!) for ONE GB SD CARD!

    Seriously, I might just look for a cheap flight to the US and get the camera that way!
     
  25. sjl macrumors 6502

    sjl

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    #25
    Everything has a price. The price of Nikon's greater pixel density (and hence greater resolving power) is an increased amount of noise.

    The difference is most marked at ISO 3200, but that's a setting that you'd not use unless there was no other way you could get the shot. It appears, though, that Nikon encourages D2X users to go no further than ISO 800, whilst Canon encourages 20D (for example) users to stop at ISO 1600.

    Whether or not this is an issue for you depends on what you want to shoot, of course.

    The other point, of course, is that you're not going to be able to take advantage of that greater resolving power without spending big dollars on glass. But then, to buy a D2X (or a 5D, or a 1Ds) and then stick a $200 zoom lens on it is to spend thousands of dollars on a $300 point-and-shoot. :D
     

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