I recommend to anyone seriously contemplating the purchase of a new digital SLR camera to consider these two primary questions:
1. How much money do you have to spend???? $500.? $800.? $1,500.?
2. What level of photography do you aspire to "progress to" in the coming years ? (i.e. basic beginner, intermediate, or professional/business use).
For most beginners to intermediates I usually suggest one of these two manufacturers: Canon vs Nikon
1. Canon EOS Rebel model XSi. (Also known as the Canon 450D in Britain) The "kit" package comes with an 18-55mm zoom lens. The camera has pop-up flash, 12.2 Megapixels, and shutter speeds up to 1/4000th, 100-1,600 ISO sensitivity, 7 auto exposure Scene modes, PLUS Shutter Priority, Aperture Priority and Programmed Exposure Modes and Manual. It also has a 3 inch LCD screen, 3.5 frames continuous per second max., 9 point AF system, Live View Functioning and the ability to record photos in 3, 6 or 12 Megapixels PLUS numerous other great features found only on more expensive cameras. Wal-Mart is also selling them now for about $799. Sam's Club also has them for $729. I also think that Amazon dot com has them for around $650.
I bought one of these 6 months ago and use it as my "back up" camera. I absolutely love it. I have gotten some fantastic photos with it and cannot praise it enough. I routinely enlarge my photos to make 8x10's and 11x14 size enlargements with no noticeable distortion or loss of detail in the pictures.
2. Nikon D-90: If you prefer to use Nikon equipment I strongly recommend the Nikon D-90 which has 12.3 Megapixels, 3 inch monitor with Live View, 200-3,200 ISO sensitivity, 11 point AF system with Face Priority, 4.5 frames per second in continuous mode, 5 advanced Scene modes for auto exposure plus Shutter Priority, Aperture Priority, Programmed Auto plus Manual. The D-90 sells for around $900-950. (Body ONLY. The 18-55mm lens cost an additional $150.-175.) Typically, Nikon equipment is slightly more expensive than Canon equipment, but (having owned both Nikon and Canon cameras), I have seldom noticed BETTER quality results using Nikon equipment.
You might also consider the Nikon D-40 ($499) kit that comes with the 18-55mm lens. Another great choice is the Nikon D-60 kit ($649) which also comes with the 18-55mm lens. All of these Nikon's can be found at Best Buy or Amazon dot com for a very low price.
These selections are probably the best choices for any beginner to intermediate skill level, offering the most lenses and other accessories, dealers and places to purchase.
I strongly recommend that ALL beginners buy a good book on digital photography AND take a class or two from a Vocational school or Community Education Center in your area.
You can learn more about the technical specifications of each of these two cameras at these websites:
30 years of semi-professional photography using Nikon and Canon equipment.
· 1 decade ago