Newb Help: Canon XT vs. Nikon D40

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by ErikCLDR, Dec 16, 2007.

?

Which Camera?

  1. Nikon D40

    9 vote(s)
    34.6%
  2. Canon Rebel XT

    14 vote(s)
    53.8%
  3. Other

    3 vote(s)
    11.5%
  1. ErikCLDR macrumors 68000

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    #1
    Ok, for Christmas I am wanting to get a Digital SLR. I am looking for an all around good camera that will last me for a while. I honestly don't know a whole lot about photography but I am intending on learning. Basically with this camera I'll be taking pictures of friends, landscapes, indoor stuff, outdoor stuff, and just general pictures hah.

    So I've been looking at the Nikon D40 ($450 w/lens) and the Canon Rebel XT ($460 w/lens). I've been reading about them and they both seem to be decent starter SLRs.

    Which do you recommend? I am trying to keep this under $500 so should I get a body only and a different lens, or is the stock one ok? I just would like a lens that will suit my all around needs. Again, I am a newbie here, not a pro.

    I hear that the D40 has a better feel to it. I also like the larger LCD.

    I appreciate your help!
     
  2. Kamera RAWr macrumors 65816

    Kamera RAWr

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    #2
    Well, you're either going to get posts telling you to do a search of the forums as this has been discussed to death or you'll get people saying the following: Go to a store and see which feels better in your hands, decide which lens system you like better, have you considered (alternative dSLR here), etc.

    That being said, they're all valid points I suppose. Truth be told, both cameras are fine and can net you great results. Just the time to learn all the tricks and techniques. Learn all the controls of your camera... most importantly HAVE FUN! :D

    Sorry if my post isn't so helpful :eek:
     
  3. Westside guy macrumors 601

    Westside guy

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    #3
    Both are good. I shoot Nikon, others shoot Canon, we're all happy with our cameras. :D

    I voted for "other", though, because really they are equally good. I think there are more Nikon users on this forum than Canon users, so Nikon will probably win the vote - but that's not really a good way to choose. As has happened before, someone's bound to say "look at all the Canon cameras on the football sidelines"; then I'll reply with my standard "look at all the pro landscape and nature photographers shooting Nikon" - it's all silly. They're equally good cameras. You won't get better photos from one or the other.

    Flip a coin.
     
  4. SolracSelbor macrumors 6502

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    #4
    Id say Cannon becuase it has exposure bracketing if you ever get into HDR. Nikon D40 or D40x doesnt.
     
  5. 66217 Guest

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    Jan 30, 2006
    #5
    I have a Nikon D40x an it is an excellent camera, but I am sure that the Canon XT is also great. So just go and try them, and buy the one you feel more comfortable with. Both, Nikon and Canon, have an excellent lens family.

    The kit lens, at least of the Nikon D40, which is a 18-55mm, is great. You'll miss the telephoto range, but buying a lens that covers from wide to telephoto is expensive. In fact, I think there is only one lens that makes this, which is the Nikkor 18-200mm (the best lens ever created according to Ken Rockwell:D), but it is quite expensive (around $750 USD).

    So just keep the kit lens and shot like crazy, and then in the future decide what other lens to buy.:)
     
  6. termina3 macrumors 65816

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    #6
    You know, over the past couple of months, I've realized how congruous this forum is in it's suggestions. No matter who is giving the advice, it's usually a form answer (not that a form answer is uncalled for).

    I'm not "hating", just a little curiosity I noticed.
     
  7. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

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    #7
    Good advice never changes! :D

    Besides, none of us are out to start a war over something that is ultimately personal choice. Me, I like Canon AND Nikon. I also like my old Minolta full-frame, love to have a 'blad, and kinda miss my dad's old Brownie. It's all good.

    Besides, the importance of the camera body brand is the least, compared to the quality of the glass and the eye and talent of the photographer behind it. I'm sure there are some specialty applications that favor one make over another, but for the overwhelming majority of us and our uses, either will work.

    I doubt that anyone wakes up one morning, looks at the collection of stuff in their photo kit, and claims, "I wish I'd chosen XXXX!"
     
  8. ErikCLDR thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #8
    So basically the answer is they are both fine just get the one that fits better in your hand?
     
  9. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

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    #9
    Basically, yeah, but look at the features, price, yada yada. You know, comparison shop. Don't worry too much about the long-range accessorizing, because if you're gonna get deep into it, you'll likely replace the body sooner rather than later (as in 2 years, give or take), and likely won't have a huge investment yet, beyond the camera and kit lens. Most everything accessory-wise beyond that is not brand-specific.

    Once you start dumping $500-$1500 into glass, per lens, you'll most probably stick with that manufacturer for good. In other words, look at the "cost of conversion" to switch brands when the time comes. Bodies come & go, but glass is the biggie.
     
  10. macro macrumors member

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    Dec 15, 2007
    #10
    Try them both on for size. Get the "kit" lens that comes with the camera. Both Nikon and Canon make very good consumer lenses. Although I have used Nikon since 1969 I still say it comes down to feel and price point. The D40 is a phenomenal value.

    Remember the old adage: "A camera is just a light tight box onto which you afix the best lens you can afford". Although the cameras have different features as you go up in price, they're still only a light tight box. It's all about the lenses.

    For your experience level the "Kit" lens will do you proud, whichever you choose.

    You need to learn the camera. As you progress you can add lenses.

    Let us know what you choose.
     
  11. taylorwilsdon macrumors 68000

    taylorwilsdon

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    #11
    Nikon's "kit" lens is much better then Canon's. Canon's kit lens is a total throwaway in my opinion (trying not to be a snob, but its hard)

    You would be better served by buying a used XT for $325 from Keh.com (excellent condition) and spending $125 on a nicer lens (nifty 50mm prime and have some $$ left over, maybe?)
     
  12. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

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    #12
    I'm throwing the snob flag! :p

    Actually, neither of the kit lenses at that level are spectacular, but I think the Canon is maybe a little bit better than you give it credit for ;). In any case, the Canon 50mm 1.8 prime ("plastic fantastic") is possibly the most bang for the buck you'll ever get in a lens, regardless of who makes it. $70 online from Adorama.

    The kit 18-55 gives a nice little range to cut your teeth with, if you can get it included in a used package cheap, as taylorwilsdon suggested, unless there's some better glass that they'll throw in as part of a package.
     
  13. macro macrumors member

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    Dec 15, 2007
    #13
    Kit lenses, in both categories are fine for newer photographers. There is enough to worry about in the getting used to the camera. Point and shoot lenses are another notch down yet folks take marvelous photos for their own uses with them.

    For my part I am always excited that one wants to enter the photography arena in a proper way. Willing to make the investment. The learning is only rewarded after the initial education, where I would surmise this person is.

    Get whichever camera and lens suits you and enjoy the experience. Photography is the learning, it never ends.
     
  14. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #14
    You're right, which is why I don't really give any advice in this sort of thread anymore. ;)

    I could just copy and paste my response from a text file, and even then, my response would say something like, "Do a search, even if it's a manual one over the last 3 pages of this forum."
     
  15. macro macrumors member

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    Dec 15, 2007
    #15
    Photography requires experience with many cameras, lenses, techniques and darkroom experiments. There is no easy answer to a question such as this persons. A camera is a camera is a camera. The lens is the real point that so many have no knowledge of. The glass, the grinding of lens elements, the interior tubes refraction, or, lack of, the engineering and the final product. It's all based on the market as to the quality and price.

    To answer this persons question demands a knowledge none of us has, the personal knowledge of the persons preference to nuance. We can't accurately answer this. We can only give an answer that encourages the trust in us that we do not take a side as to choice.

    I thought it was obvious that this person had a budget and a question. The best we can do is stay within the limits this person ascribed. No?
     
  16. ErikCLDR thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #16
    So I guess the question is, between the Nikon and the Canon which has a better lens?

    Also, I assume the canon has more lens options too, right?
     
  17. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

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    #17
    When it comes to quality optics, neither one has any real advantage over the other over the entire line. The competition is fierce in achieving the highest level of precision and presentation, so the consumer's always the winner here. If I had to choose, I'd say Canon has a slight edge in optics and selection. Nikon is still an outstanding first choice that you'd never regret, either. Since the lens pictured below is no longer being made (even if you had the $83K!), you'll never miss a thing. ;)

    You need to hold the best competitors in your hand, with equivalent lenses, and just see which one hits you right. Between the two, you can't lose.
     

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  18. Westside guy macrumors 601

    Westside guy

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    #18
    A compelling argument for Canon, I must admit...
     
  19. termina3 macrumors 65816

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    #19
    …please tell me those are primes–the zoom ring would be a royal pain
     
  20. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

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    #20
    Well, girls do prefer guys with bigger, um, lenses...
     
  21. HomeingPigeon macrumors regular

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    Aug 1, 2007
    #21
    I said the nikon d40 because it feels better in my hands. I find that the xt and xti seem kinda plasticy and fake in my hands.
     
  22. ErikCLDR thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #22
    UGH I can't decide.

    What are the benefits of the Canon?
     
  23. ErikCLDR thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #23
    Ok, I ordered the Canon.

    If I don't like it, I can always return it.

    Thank you to all who contributed!
     
  24. macro macrumors member

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    Dec 15, 2007
    #24
    The truth is ; one does the best with what one can afford. Doesn't really matter as to the optics or the camera body. It is the photographer only.

    Forums are probably the last place one who wants to learn photography should come. It's the doing, not the verbage. I mean this heart felt. If I hadn't started with a TLR and gone on to 35 mm, then large format and 6 x 7, all by myself, I wouldn't be successful in the limited discipline that I do.

    I do not prescribe value as to brand or format. It's what you can do with the lens, no matter the cost, cheap or pro glass, I use both, that makes or breaks one.

    Ansels glass might be considered amateur glass now. It isn't. It is how he used it. Go to Edward Weston and check his photos on the webs archives. Great stuff. Now, his is amateur glass due to technology.

    Back to this persons question. Get what feels right and take the lens that costs the least to start. You can't drive a Lamborghini if you are used to a Subaru, or, haven't driven at all.

    Thanks for the interest and my good wishes to all.
     

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