First Time DSLR Buyer-Nikon d5000 or d90?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by husker4, Jan 10, 2010.

  1. husker4 macrumors member

    Jan 10, 2010
    I'm looking to buy my first DSLR camera and I'm looking for some advice. I've done the usual research-random internet reviews, youtube videos. I have experience with both Nikon and Canon and I prefer Nikon so it's come down to these 2 models. From what i understand both of these models have similar features and quality. The d5000 is cheaper and seems like the better value. But my question is with the d5000 having to use the lenses with autofocus built in, would it be a cheaper choice over the long run? I want to get into landscape photography and will be purchasing a ultra-wide angle lens soon. So should i go with the cheaper and similar d5000...or the more expensive with autofocus in the body d90? TIA
  2. Patrick17 macrumors newbie

    Dec 25, 2009

    I would buy the D90....

    I was in your position about 9 months ago and I went with the D60 (the older version of the D5000). I thought that was all I was every going to need.... Well after 9 months and three new lenses, I upgraded to the D90.

    I would hate for you to follow in the same line I went..... I think I would have saved about $600 if i would have purchased the D90 from the beginning.

    Now, I know there is a big difference between the newer D500 and the older D60 but I think you should not limit yourself to just AF-S lenses. There are lots of great AF lenses out there that are much cheaper and just as good as the newer NIkon stuff.

    In Short buy the the D90 and enjoy taking pictures!!!!!!!

    Patrick M.
  3. Mr Rich macrumors newbie

    Jan 11, 2010
    London, England
    Definitely go with the D90.

    You will have way more flexibility with lenses. If you had the money I would even go as far to say if you can stretch to a D200, do it and I'll tell you the reason why.

    Some of the older film lenses for Nikon do work on the D-SLRs, which means you can pick up some really cheap good lenses. The reason I say maybe look into a D200.... some of the older film lenses while they do work on the D90 they automatic light meter in the camera doesn't work with the lens, so you have to set the aperture manually. With a bit of trial and error on the D90, especially if you're doing landscapes, this will be fine. However, because the D200 has a better light meter it works with older film lenses just like a newer Nikon lens would.

    For old film lens compatibility with the Nikons D-SLRS, see this link:

    As you can see the D5000 has slightly less capability.
  4. pdxflint macrumors 68020


    Aug 25, 2006
    Oregon coast
    The D200 is not really available these days, except used. If I were also considering used or refurbished (good as new) camera bodies, I'd actually go for a D300 first - waaay better autofocus overall - the same AF as the D700/D3 cameras, and plenty of near-mint ones out there for as little as $900 second hand due to all the folks moving up to full-frame...

    Of the cameras the OP mentioned - I'd also agree with the D90 over the D5000 - it's a much better built, better AF, and more flexible camera. But, unless I needed video, I'd seriously look for a D300 in somewhere near the same price range, maybe a little more. It is a serious camera, though. No scene modes and all that, just straight up flexible performance you can really grow with.
  5. husker4 thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 10, 2010
    wow i never really gave much thought to the d300, the video is not important to me at all, thats what camcorders are for in my opinion. so do you think it's worth the extra cash or should i get the d90 and spend more money on glass? thanks again
  6. compuwar macrumors 601


    Oct 5, 2006
    Northern/Central VA
    If landscapes are your choice and you're not worried about commercial viability, then it depends on your total budget. A good tripod, good tripod head and say the 14-24mm on a D5000 will beat a good tripod, good tripod head and say the Sigma 10-20mm on a D90. But the delta in lens prices is going to be larger than the delta in camera body prices. If going with a D300 or a D90 doesn't materially affect the lenses you can purchase, then I'd go with the D300, if it may, then the D5000.

  7. HarryPot macrumors 6502a

    Sep 5, 2009
    If you have the money, go for the D90.

    Sometimes I regret buying the D40x instead of a D80, tho the D40x gives me excellent quality for my needs. As for buying the D300, do consider buying good glass first and then a better camera body. I know I've enjoyed buying good lenses much more than I would enjoy buying a better camera.
  8. Fozzybadfeet macrumors 6502


    Oct 7, 2009
    Orange County, CA
    Nikon D90.

    Great camera...I kind of regret buying my D80 instead of the D90, but it's OK. haha.
  9. sidewinder macrumors 68020


    Dec 10, 2008
    Northern California
    The D90 has better sensor performance than the D300 or D300s and better low light performance than the D5000.

    Go for the D90.

  10. husker4 thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 10, 2010
    awesome..thanks for all the advice. I think i'll probably go with the d90, from what i sounds like the replacement for the d90 will lose the in-body af so i'll be glad to snag one while i can.

Share This Page