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Old 02-20-2013, 12:10 PM   #1
Mousin' Around
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Need Thoughts from Experts

I am trying to decide between two cameras and not wure which way to go. I have always been a fan of Nikon, but Wolfe Camera is offering a deal on a camera that cannot be beat.

I am somewhere between beginner and experienced. I currently own a Nikon DSLR, but it has died. (**plays taps**)

Here is what I want to be able to do with the camera:
  • Take decent photos in low light
  • Pictures of family indoors/outdoors
  • My camera is mostly used for vacation; I have a point and shoot for random stuff
  • I occassionally use a tripod, but I usually keep the camera on me
I will be taking a class after I make the purchase to learn specifics on how to use MY camera.

I am trying to decide between the Nikon D3200 and Canon T4i.

I have more thoughts and explanation I could share, but I want to hear what others have to say first.
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Old 02-20-2013, 12:29 PM   #2
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Taking decent photos in low light... well, that's a tough one because it relies heavily on the photographer's knowledge. And with DSLR you'll more than likely be looking at a lens investment beyond the kit lens to get the great low light/low noise shots everyone wants these days.

As far as the cameras... The Nikon D3200 and the Canon T4i are not really in the same class. The D3200 is more equivalent to the Canon T3 (notice there's no i on there). The Nikon D5200 is more on the same level at the T4i as far as features, ISO, etc... goes.

But that's just specs. Have you been to the store to play with the models? You're switching brands here, make sure you're happy with how the Canon is laid out. Also, what specific features are drawing you to each camera?
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Old 02-20-2013, 01:05 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by photo_chick View Post
As far as the cameras... The Nikon D3200 and the Canon T4i are not really in the same class. The D3200 is more equivalent to the Canon T3 (notice there's no i on there). The Nikon D5200 is more on the same level at the T4i as far as features, ISO, etc... goes.

?
I would agree with the above assement. Being a Nikon shooter myself.

Since you are already a Nikon shooter, I would stick with Nikon. Your existing equipment and lenses will be able to transfer over (in most cases).

Now, if low light performance is a feature that is important to you I would strongly recomend you look into spending a little more and consider the Nikon D7000. This is what I have and what sold me is the low light performance and some other key feature. The D7000 is Nikon best dx or consumer level body.

Now, be aware, the D7000 is due for a refesh in the next 6-9 month. But that means that the price has come down a little. And even with an impending refresh, the D7000 will be better camera than a d5200.
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Old 02-20-2013, 01:40 PM   #4
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You did not state what Nikon model you currently have (although dead), your current lens lineup and your budget. As far as lowlight (usable high ISO), the D7000 certainly has a great sensor (Sony 16mp) that allows for the use of higher ISO's. In the Nikon line, it shares that sensor with its mid-line consumer body the D5100. The 5200 has the newer 24mp sensor (along with the D3200). Newer is not always better. There is anecdotal evidence (from several reviews) that it lacks the higher usable ISO of the 16mp sensors. I wouldn't hang my hat on that because there just isn't enough evidence out there yet. Just food for thought. Even with today's camera bodies/sensors, lowlight photography still relies heavily on fast glass. With fast glass, comes expense, size and weight. I wish there was a magic bullet!! Its all about what works for you and trade-offs. If you have more than an 18-55 kit lens you may want to stick with the Nikon line. It depends how heavily you are invested in Nikon. Bottomline, all the manufacturers are putting out quality products. Like the rest of the folks here, we chose our brand (mine is Pentax) for own reasons.
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Old 02-20-2013, 02:08 PM   #5
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the newer 24mp sensor (along with the D3200). Newer is not always better. There is anecdotal evidence (from several reviews) that it lacks the higher usable ISO of the 16mp sensors. .
This is the hardest detail for non technical camera shoppers to understand.

98% of those shopping automatically think well, 24mp is bigger than 16mp, therefore it must be better. Now matter how hard you try and explain the untruths to this, people don't listen.

The key features for me in the d7000 are the internal focus motor (allows you to use older lenses with no motor built into the lens) and the weather proofing features. the list goes on and on, but those two stick out for me.

and the Nikon creative lighting system.
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Old 02-20-2013, 03:07 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DSLRuser View Post
The key features for me in the d7000 are the internal focus motor (allows you to use older lenses with no motor built into the lens) and the weather proofing features. the list goes on and on, but those two stick out for me.

and the Nikon creative lighting system.
We have been shooting Pentax for 30 years. Each manufacturer has its advantages and disadvantages. I love the Nikon flash system and I wish Pentax would upgrade theirs. My main camera is the K5 and with its compactness, weather sealing (along with an expanding line of weather resistant-WR lenses), in-body stabilization and long line of compatible legacy lenses, it is a very good system. They recently released two new iterations of the K5 (II, IIs) with improvements and in the IIs removal of the AA filter. Everytime I take off my vertical battery grip, it surprises me how small it really is. With the stainless steel frame and magnesium alloy body, its a tough camera! They also recently announced development of a FF camera for release sometime in 2014.

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Old 02-20-2013, 05:20 PM   #7
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As stated by others, the Nikon D3200 isn't really the equivalent of the Canon t4i.
If you feel your way around the Nikon layout, I'd probably stick to the Nikon. For the advantages you seek, each brand of dSLR will perform similarly. In terms of low light, Nikons usually perform better at higher ISO than the corresponding cameras of other brands, but the differences are pretty slight.
Canon, Nikon, Sony (you'd be looking at the A57 or soon to be released A58), Pentax -- they each have some slight differences. But overall performance will be pretty similar.
Nikons have the reputation of overall best image quality (though again, not all that different than the rivals.)
Canon packs in the most consumer friendly features, with the Canon t41 including a touch screen (but they both have all the most common features you would expect to find).
The Sonys are a bit different in that they have switched from a reflex mirror to a translucent mirror -- giving you faster focusing video, faster burst shooting, but giving you an electronic viewfinder as opposed to optical viewfinder. (Some people prefer the electronic viewfinder anyway, giving you a more accurate depiction of the final photograph, while others prefer the brightness and "real" look of the optical viewfinder).
I won't comment on Pentax as I'm less familiar with the brand, but I've heard good things as well.
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Old 02-20-2013, 09:08 PM   #8
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Thanks for all of the thoughts. I will also give more details so that you know what I am up against.

And I am aware that the Nikon and Canon I am looking are not an apples to apples comparison. Just wanted to let you all know that since you are helping me figure this out.

My camera that died is a D50. The delimma is that the motor in the D50 for auto-focus for the lens doesnt exist in the newer Nikon. This means 2 of my 3 lenses will not work with the new Nikon D3200 with the AF feature. I would have to do manual focus and that is not what I am looking for. The only one that will (with AF feature) is the 28-55, which is what comes standard with the camera anyhow. The other two lenses that I have are made by Quantary for the Nikon. There is a 70 - 300 and I forgot that the other one is.

Wolf Cameria is offering the T4i with 2 lenses and 3 year protection for $930 through Saturday.
Wolf/Best Buy to get the same thing for the D3200 (camera body and same size AF-S lens) is roughly $1300

I have played with both. The Canon is a bit more light-weight which I love, but the set-up is certainly different and not as user-friendly. But, I had to learn my D50 when I went from a Coolpix to that one.

Last edited by Mousin' Around; 02-20-2013 at 09:14 PM.
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Old 02-20-2013, 09:13 PM   #9
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In that price range, you can get the Nikon d7000 body. Probably a better overall camera -- and all 3 of your lenses would work.

Why buy new lenses when nothing is wrong with your old glass?
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Old 02-20-2013, 11:12 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mousin' Around View Post
Thanks for all of the thoughts. I will also give more details so that you know what I am up against.

And I am aware that the Nikon and Canon I am looking are not an apples to apples comparison. Just wanted to let you all know that since you are helping me figure this out.

My camera that died is a D50. The delimma is that the motor in the D50 for auto-focus for the lens doesnt exist in the newer Nikon. This means 2 of my 3 lenses will not work with the new Nikon D3200 with the AF feature. I would have to do manual focus and that is not what I am looking for. The only one that will (with AF feature) is the 28-55, which is what comes standard with the camera anyhow. The other two lenses that I have are made by Quantary for the Nikon. There is a 70 - 300 and I forgot that the other one is.

Wolf Cameria is offering the T4i with 2 lenses and 3 year protection for $930 through Saturday.
Wolf/Best Buy to get the same thing for the D3200 (camera body and same size AF-S lens) is roughly $1300

I have played with both. The Canon is a bit more light-weight which I love, but the set-up is certainly different and not as user-friendly. But, I had to learn my D50 when I went from a Coolpix to that one.
What lenses is Wolf selling with the T4i? As a chain they are notorious for being overpriced. B&H has the T4i with the 18-55 kit for $649 (you have to put it in your cart to see the lower price). Or it's $849 with the 18-135 STM. That doesn't include 3 year protection but given that Wolf has been closing stores left and right (they no longer exist as Wolf or Ritz in my area) I'm not sure how much stock I'd put in that anyway. And you can always cover your gear under your homeowners or renters insurance and be covered for a whole lot more anyway.
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Old 02-21-2013, 12:17 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mousin' Around View Post

My camera that died is a D50. The delimma is that the motor in the D50 for auto-focus for the lens doesnt exist in the newer Nikon. This means 2 of my 3 lenses will not work with the new Nikon D3200 with the AF feature. I would have to do manual focus and that is not what I am looking for. The only one that will (with AF feature) is the 28-55, which is what comes standard with the camera anyhow. The other two lenses that I have are made by Quantary for the Nikon. There is a 70 - 300 and I forgot that the other one

As I said above. The d7000 has internal focus motor in the body. Your lenses will work just fine.
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Old 02-21-2013, 12:47 AM   #12
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In that price range, you can get the Nikon d7000 body. Probably a better overall camera -- and all 3 of your lenses would work.

Why buy new lenses when nothing is wrong with your old glass?
If two of the lenses are Quantaray a photographer may be better off purchasing new glass. Most Quantaray lenses are truly horrid lenses and we all know how much lenses impact overall image quality. The higher resolution DSLR you get the more glaring the flaws in bad glass will become so what might have been relatively benign on the 6MP D50 may very well glow like a neon sign on a current model DSLR. A good example of this is the Canon 75-300... great cheap tele zoom for film, passable on my old Rebel XT but on a current model DSLR it looks like you shot through a sheet of saran wrap while someone outlined everything with a purple crayon.
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:49 AM   #13
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If two of the lenses are Quantaray a photographer may be better off purchasing new glass. Most Quantaray lenses are truly horrid lenses and we all know how much lenses impact overall image quality. The higher resolution DSLR you get the more glaring the flaws in bad glass will become so what might have been relatively benign on the 6MP D50 may very well glow like a neon sign on a current model DSLR. A good example of this is the Canon 75-300... great cheap tele zoom for film, passable on my old Rebel XT but on a current model DSLR it looks like you shot through a sheet of saran wrap while someone outlined everything with a purple crayon.
Lol. Suppose that's totally true. Really depends on the glass though. Some of the old glass holds up very well. I shoot primarily with old Minolta glass. Resolution, colors, sharpness, all hold up very well. Some CA issues, easily corrected in post.
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Old 02-21-2013, 07:01 AM   #14
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I would say check on Amazon.com for those cameras. Wolf (Ritz) is at this point a fly by night operation as far as I am concerned. I can almost be certain that you would find the same cameras cheaper on Amazon. They deal with much much more reputable dealers like B&H, Adorama, etc.

Usually a lens package deal means you get a good camera and some junk lenses. Just saying. Check it all out before hitting the "buy" button.
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Old 02-21-2013, 10:42 AM   #15
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What lenses is Wolf selling with the T4i? As a chain they are notorious for being overpriced. B&H has the T4i with the 18-55 kit for $649 (you have to put it in your cart to see the lower price). Or it's $849 with the 18-135 STM. That doesn't include 3 year protection but given that Wolf has been closing stores left and right (they no longer exist as Wolf or Ritz in my area) I'm not sure how much stock I'd put in that anyway. And you can always cover your gear under your homeowners or renters insurance and be covered for a whole lot more anyway.

The T4i comes with the standard Canon 18-55 and a Canon 55 - 250.

I did think about that in regards to Wolf and not being able to get service a year from now.

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