Canon D400 vrs Nikon D50

miloblithe

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Nov 14, 2003
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So I just went and tried out the Canon D400. To my surprise, I really liked it. I'd played with the Canon D350 earlier and didn't like the fit and feel of the camera at all, so I was really surpised about the D400. Now I'm trying to figure out if it's worth $200 more than the Nikon D50.

Also, I've read (kenrockwell and photozone.de) that while the Nikon kit lens is OK, the Canon one is pretty crappy. I was thinking of getting the Sigma AF 18-50mm f/3.5-5.6 DC if I get the Canon, and then adding the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II fairly soon. Eventually, I'd like to get some pricy glass, but I can't afford both a camera and great lens at once. I'd like to stay under $1000 including memory card, bad, filters...

I'm mostly looking towards portraits and landscapes? Any thoughts from the wise?
 

Abstract

macrumors Penryn
Dec 27, 2002
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For landscapes, I think they're both going to be equally good. I like the colours from my D50 over my friend's 350D, but with the 400D, I'm not too sure since it's so new. It's a different sensor, different processor, different algorithms, etc, so I don't know.
 

beavo451

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Jun 22, 2006
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If you can find it, a refurb D50 for ~$420 + Nikon 18-70mm lens for ~$250.

You will have about $300 left over to buy memory and a bag.
 

miloblithe

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Nov 14, 2003
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So, here's my choice as it's shaping up:

Nikon D50, used Nikon 18-35mm f/3.5-4.5D ED-IF AF, Nikon 50mm f/1.8D AF, and used Sigma 70-210 3.5-4.5 Macro for a little under $900.

Canon XTi, Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II for about $820. And use my mom's spare crappy 35-80 and crappy 70-200 until I can save up and buy new lenses worth getting.

Or in other words:

worse camera, good wide zoom, 50mm, decent telephoto zoom

vrs

better camera, crap not very wide zoom, 50mm, crap telephoto zoom, $80 towards next lens

What would you all do?
 

SpankyPenzaanz

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Sep 4, 2006
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miloblithe said:
So, here's my choice as it's shaping up:

Nikon D50, used Nikon 18-35mm f/3.5-4.5D ED-IF AF, Nikon 50mm f/1.8D AF, and used Sigma 70-210 3.5-4.5 Macro for a little under $900.

Canon XTi, Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II for about $820. And use my mom's spare crappy 35-80 and crappy 70-200 until I can save up and buy new lenses worth getting.

Or in other words:

worse camera, good wide zoom, 50mm, decent telephoto zoom

vrs

better camera, crap not very wide zoom, 50mm, crap telephoto zoom, $80 towards next lens

What would you all do?
get the better camera and you can find good used lenses be careful though
always get the better - it is your foundation after all then build your lenses and flashes and tripods...I started out with mediocre sigma lenses and over time replaced them all with first party primes (I have y et come across a good telephot I CAN AFFORD)
 

miloblithe

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My fear though is that I won't be able to afford any other lenses in the near future, and what's the point of taking pictures with a spiffy camera through a bad lens? The 50mm would be fine, and I'm mostly interested in portraits, but it's still going to be a little limiting for a while.

But that's what I'm leaning towards now...
 

maxi

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May 23, 2006
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Buenos Aires, Argentina
There´s no really "better" camera here.

The image quality between Nikons and Canons is really almost identical. Anyone who says different is just trying to sell you something or just caught into all the technological jargon. Different DSLRs apply to different public, not because of the quality of their images, you will get exactly the same picture with a D50 or a D2X or a 400D, the difference is of course in personal preference (ergonomics and whatnot), the glass you already have and most importantly the use you will give to the camera.

You don't see newspaper reporters going around with a D50 not because it takes crappy pictures, but because they would DESTROY one in a matter of months (they beat the **** out of the cameras).

So, unless there's a specific spec that seriously limits you (like FPS, or metal body, etc) all the cameras in the present generation will get you the same pics.

You can change bodies later on, but once you have a big investment in lenses you are pretty much tied up to a maker.

My recommendation is: first decide if you prefer Nikon or Canon, then buy the best glass you can afford.
And take pictures, lots of them ;)
 

miloblithe

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I agree with that all, but the D50 and D400 are not both in the present generation. The D50 is a year and a half old and the D400 is brand new. There's no one spec that appeals to me about the D400, but it's got a lot of advantages on the spec side. Still, being able to shoot a burst of 27 pics instead of 14 (or whatever) or 3FPS instead of 2.5 isn't really a big deal. I do like the idea of the dust shake thingy.

I like the feel of both cameras. The D50 feels more solid and durable. I like the canon's menu system more.

The lenses available for Canons and Nikons seem somewhat like a wash to me. There are great lenses for both.
 

miloblithe

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Nov 14, 2003
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Clix Pix said:
Actually, comparing the D50 to the Canon D400 isn't an appropriate test; you need to compare Nikon's new D80 to Canon's D400.... The D80 has many advantages over the D50.
True, but I definitely can't afford a D80. I think my wife would bludgeon me with something made of cast iron if I bought that.
 

beavo451

macrumors 6502
Jun 22, 2006
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SpankyPenzaanz said:
get the better camera and you can find good used lenses be careful though
always get the better - it is your foundation after all then build your lenses and flashes and tripods...I started out with mediocre sigma lenses and over time replaced them all with first party primes (I have y et come across a good telephot I CAN AFFORD)

Lenses are the foundation of your image. No point in getting a good body when the glass can't be up to the task. All bodies record images. I doubt that you can tell what camera took a picture just by looking at the print.

Edit: For the record, it is Canon 400D, not D400.
 

Abstract

macrumors Penryn
Dec 27, 2002
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I don't think people who are shopping for a DSLR realize how important wideangle shots are, and how often you'll use it at it's widest setting, especially indoors or with friends and family standing close by. "Foot zoom" isn't always an option, after all.

Go with the option that can get you the widest angle. However, do note that both the D50 and 400D have a kit lens that goes from 18-55 mm. ;)


From your list though, I obviously like the lenses you listed for the Nikon better. The thing is that the D50 is 6 MP, and the 400D is 10 MP. When the 350D was the camera to get, it was 8 MP. The difference between 6 and 8 MP is really nothing and I'd laugh at anyone who told me otherwise. However, the difference between 6 MP and 10 MP is noticeable. It won't really affect image quality, but it will affect your ability to crop and make prints at (sliiightly) larger sizes. The difference in the number of pixels along the length is around 850 pixels (6 MP sensor = 3000 pixels along the longer side, 10 MP sensor is around 3850 pixels). That is a noticeable difference, but you won't be able to get prints that are much bigger than you can get with the D50.

Can you get a 350D instead? Maybe consider a 350D or a D50, and save some money on that Canon option. :confused:
 

miloblithe

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That's a good idea, but I didn't like the 350D at all, which was why I was really surprised to like the 400D (sorry about that, not D400).

I know that on the 400D lenses are magnified 1.6x, so a 50mm is an 80mm and my mom's 35-80 is a 56-128. The first thing I'll want that I won't have is a good wide angle lens.
 

Mike Teezie

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Nov 20, 2002
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miloblithe said:
So I just went and tried out the Canon D400. To my surprise, I really liked it. I'd played with the Canon D350 earlier and didn't like the fit and feel of the camera at all, so I was really surpised about the D400. Now I'm trying to figure out if it's worth $200 more than the Nikon D50.

Also, I've read (kenrockwell and photozone.de) that while the Nikon kit lens is OK, the Canon one is pretty crappy. I was thinking of getting the Sigma AF 18-50mm f/3.5-5.6 DC if I get the Canon, and then adding the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II fairly soon. Eventually, I'd like to get some pricy glass, but I can't afford both a camera and great lens at once. I'd like to stay under $1000 including memory card, bad, filters...

I'm mostly looking towards portraits and landscapes? Any thoughts from the wise?
You'll be in great shape either way.

It is true that the Nikon kit lens is better than the Canon kit lens. However, I'm still going to cast my vote for the 400D here.

Reasons:
Canon glass in the future.
More MP
Better LCD
And this - which I think will be met with some skepticism - Picture Styles.

I am loving shooting with picture styles on the 5D.

Check it out - Canon Picture Styles Page.

I don't do much landscape, but I shoot people almost everyday. What I'm doing, is using my own user defined Picture style, that ups the contrast and saturation a notch or two. That way, I spend a lot less time doing mundane things in Photoshop. You can also take it to the extreme, as the examples on Canon's page have. I have one that is pretty much an in camera cross process, that is absolutely killer. Check out my blog to see some examples. Note - in some of my portraits, I've pushed the saturation to the extreme, so don't be too frightened.

I can imagine shooting landscapes with a tripod, taking one normal, flipping it to some wild picture style, and snapping another.

Anyways, there it is.
 

Zeke

macrumors 6502a
Oct 5, 2002
507
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Greenville, SC
I'm going to vote for the 400D as well. It's got a lot more features than the d50 (anti dust being one of them). As for lenses...I'd suggest getting either Tokina or Tamron 19-35 (I'm actually selling a great one but that's neither here nor there) as it's a great lens for the money. The 50mm 1.8 ($70) and your crappy zoom will be nice until you outgrow it. This puts you at just about $1000 after picking up a memory card.

I'm going to disagree about the statement on resolution, the difference between 6mp and 10mp is pretty significant. That corresponds to a 30% larger image in both directions. If you're blowing images up, that can make a lot of difference. I do agree that good glass is very important though, but I would also argue that you shouldn't spend a fortune on glass until you've taken enough shots that you actually see the cheaper stuff's limitations.
 

miloblithe

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Nov 14, 2003
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Zeke said:
I do agree that good glass is very important though, but I would also argue that you shouldn't spend a fortune on glass until you've taken enough shots that you actually see the cheaper stuff's limitations.
Zeke, you talked me into it. I'm ordering now. My plan is to use my mom's crap lenses for a little while while I experiment with the camera and get a 50mm fairly soon, and build (very) slowly from there.

$804 for the 400D plus a 1GB SanDisk card minus another $15 after rebate from CircuitCity.
 

Zeke

macrumors 6502a
Oct 5, 2002
507
1
Greenville, SC
In case you haven't ordered yet, you may want to consider another seller that doesn't charge tax (unless you don't get charged tax in which case - lucky!). I've always had good experience with buydig and beachcamera.

Good luck.

miloblithe said:
Zeke, you talked me into it. I'm ordering now. My plan is to use my mom's crap lenses for a little while while I experiment with the camera and get a 50mm fairly soon, and build (very) slowly from there.

$804 for the 400D plus a 1GB SanDisk card minus another $15 after rebate from CircuitCity.