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Old Jul 17, 2006, 9:11 AM   #1
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Moderator: Yes, posted in two forums. Looking for two sets of feedback. Hope you'll leave both. Others have followed these posts...

One more newbie question pitting one manufacturer against another. For those who are rolling their eyes at my previous posts, please bear with me and see where this one goes. It has a new angle, and perhaps totally different focus. Also, there have been a few, "I'm following this" responses to those posts… (BTW, I am buying a camera this month so you won't have to deal with these types of questions from me much longer. Also, for those who recognize my posts, I've dropped both Rebel XT/350 and d50 from consideration. Hopefully that hooked a few of you to stay on longer.)

I have begun, through all my research to understand that the user is clearly the most important factor in good photography. If I am catching on, the order may go something like: user, settings, lenses and then somewhere down the line the actual camera body. Give me a $6,000 rig and a pro a $600 entry-level and he'll kill my images. I get it.

That said, I do find it hard to believe there are not some clear, distinct positions that manufacturers take and then base their engineering efforts around those positions. With limited resources, manufacturers have to choose. If they add one extra feature, they more than likely give up something else. Any analysis of the dslr market (especially between Nikon and Canon) shows there are probably no two cameras that can compete feature to feature 100%. This camera has that but loses that.

While many have replied to my posts almost with "a camera is a camera. it's just the shooter stupid!" types of responses. "Just go feel it out and see which you like better." I get the point but don't buy it 100%. There's got to be some competitive advantages from each. There's got to be distinct strengths that they represent to distinct types of users. There's got to be some users more willing to say, "Yep, for portraiture, go XXX." "No, no, for action photography, XXX is better and here's why." I find it too hard to believe that there is not SOME product focus, engineering, etc that would make one manufacturer (and/or model) stand apart.

My first example would be, and I don't think anyone could argue: Canon clearly positions itself as the leader in sports photography. Whether you agree or not with who is the leader, Canon advertises to show a dominant position, and I've guessed, even chose that external lens color (grey? white?) to set themselves apart on the sidelines. They've gotten what they've paid for. Most of us think sports, from NFL to Nascar, and most of us think Canon. Tennis legend Andre Agassi was a spokesman for years. His "rebel" image and Canon, what a marriage! I had no real interest in photography in the 90's but I knew what a Canon Rebel was. Maria Sharapova appears to be the new face for Canon in tennis. You can't watch a tennis match on TV without seeing her and some nifty new point and shoot. We're all clear on that, so get to the point, right?

Many of the clerks in local camera shops, techies, true hobbyists seem to be Nikon guys. They roll their eyes at all of the marketing hoopla mentioned above. They refer to portrait shooters, National Geographic shooters, etc and state emphatically that you will see WAY more Nikon users in those camps. Can't disagree. I've watched a lot of photography DVDs (such as National Geographic) lately and would have to agree. I see Nikon offer more capabilities with flash systems, remote capabilities, more and more. THAT seems to be their focus and position in the marketplace. Nikon seems to be the Apple computer company to me: We're not the biggest. Don't really want to be. But just ask a REAL user and they'll tell you whose best. We give you more. We focus more on you and less on advertising. We give you more technical capabilities and make our product easier to use… On and on and on. At least that's the message I have gotten in the marketplace. Sure you see the Canon name everywhere, but it's not really better. Let me show you why…

I love the CAnon sports shots and low light but see better detail in non sports, OUTDOOR shots with Nikon, . Yes, change settings but people in background got washed out into shadows with CAnon. They disappeared as compared to Nikon. With Nikon they remained crisp. But, indoors other way around. Is that truly the shooter? NOthing to do with the camera?!?

NOW, and yes finally, I get to my question.
WOULD THERE BE ANY TRUTH TO THE MATTER THAT IN THAT SOUGHT AFTER POSITION, WITH THAT PRODUCT FOCUS, WITH SUBSEQUENT ENGINEERING, CANON INCORPORATES SOME TECHNOLOGY THAT IS BETTER SUITED TO ACTION PHOTOGRAPHY. And, perhaps to low light situations getting better, clearer shots indoors??? Is there something in their speed of autofocus, in image processing, something that makes them a choice for so many action shooters? Following advice, I see better, clearer, sharper images in sports forums from Canon shooters. EVen gymnasts on a podium in a poorly lit gym look clearer. ISO???

Is there something in Nikon that blew me away about their out of the box, bright and brilliant colors. With the shots I took outdoors, I was amazed at the color differences between a Nikon and Canon test. (not scientific, don't put too much focus on that. We've covered that before. And yes, you can change settings…) But, most of the posts I see show more pop in still shots, nature shots taken with Nikon. Fleshtones seemed to stay truer with Nikon. DOES NIKON PUT JUST A LITTLE MORE INTO SOMETHING, SOME ENGINEERING, SOMETHING MECHANICAL TO OFFER MORE "out of the box" POP and thus the choice for those NOT needing the focusing speed and low light settings desired by the Canon shooters.

I realize this may still oversimplify. I realize glass, shooter, post processing all come into play. But would there be any truth to the above. Any truth? Any TOTAL misconceptions. Any feedback anyone would want to give.

And finally, I already hear it, "what will you be shooting… what do you want it to do… etc." Okay, I am the family documenter. I'm always the one with the camera or camcorder in hand. 50+ percent will be walk around, non vital, fun family shots. Indoors at birthday parties, outside watching kids eat bugs, etc, etc. 25 percent will be my long-term desire of getting into local little league sports photography. Baseball, football, and yes, indoor sports such as basketball. Let's say another 25 percent will be learning to be a photographer, getting creative. But, primary focus will be Kids, action, sports more than birds and bugs. Kids chasing birds, not birds sitting still. Bugs and flowers going to toddlers mouths. Not just still shots of bugs and flowers. Eventually, those toddlers in faster action activities such as sports, and nieces and nephews already there.

For those who recognize my posts, I'm ruling out BOTH the Rebel XT and the d50. I've found too many limitations in both for what I know will be a very quick learning curve and progression into the hobby. I'm back to my original desire for the Canon 30d and considering Nikon d70s. I'm now somewhat educated enough to know that megapixels aren't everything and so the lost megapixels (6.1 versus 8.2) is debatable. Also, the glass on the d70s is far superior to that on the 30d. Price is not my concern. I'll save up and get some glass. Currently work a part time job just for this and other expensive hobbies. Let's talk technology, not price. CAn't really justify d200 even though I wonder if it's not a better value than 30d if it has good glass. 30d + better lens = price of d200????

Any feedback. With good response, I promise to make this my last such post. Just looking for technical feedback and opinions.

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Old Jul 17, 2006, 12:12 PM   #2
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most of the time it depends on your lens
both manufacturers have great lenses for action and landscapes and portraits. the camera doesnt matter anymore (except continous shooting capabilities ofcourse)

still most sports photography is done with canon lenses, and because there's a nikon>canon converter ring, its possible to get the best of 2 worlds on a canon slr.

from my own experience with a d50 and 350d i know that the d50 is great for portraits and zoomed in action alike. and that the 350d (after some photoshopping) is great for landscapes, but terrible for portraits and action.
i dont know how higher-end models like the d200 and 30D shoot those things, but that was the big difference i saw between the 2 low-end cams.

btw, d70s fits in the d50/350d group and the 30d fits in the d200/20d group

in each group, the nikon wins, but if you compare 30d to d70s, then 30d wins
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Old Jul 17, 2006, 11:01 PM   #3
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what do you mean by this. what is this "of course" statement. continuous shooting? are you saying you feel there is a difference???

chris89 wrote
the camera doesnt matter anymore (except continous shooting capabilities ofcourse)
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Old Jul 18, 2006, 1:45 AM   #4
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Canon action?

All I know is some Canon DSLR models e.g 350D (or Rebet XT) are well known for their "mis-focusing" problems. That's a nightmare for action capture.

But to be fair, I don't think the whole Canon DSLR line have such problem. And it also depends on the lenses.

Both Nikon SWM & Canon USM are quite fast in catching actions.

Even the lowest-end Nikon D50, I've been using often to shoot flying eagles. So I have some confidence in Nikon AF speed. Not quite sure about Canon.
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Old Jul 18, 2006, 4:34 PM   #5
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i was talking about camera's in general. the big thing that makes the difference is lenses and continous shooting speed. every other thing is allmost the same on every camera
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Old Jul 25, 2006, 8:13 AM   #6
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Hi Leeraff,

I'm guessing you are looking at the color of the lens at the major games and see a lot of WHITE lens. I would like to inform you that the Nikon 600mm F4 EDII lens is WHITE. I do some Nascar and every ProI usualy come across is using a Nikon. I'm not saying Nikon is better but most people that have to depend on their camera for a living seem to use Nikon equipment I have not seen anyone using anything but a Nikon D2X, D2H, D-100 or D-200 shooting weddings around this area. I had a D-100 now I use a D-200. I just could not justify $5,000 for a D2X. I used to use all "Hasselblad" for portraits and weddings and My F4's for sports. I find the D-200 does a better job and I don't lug around 50 pounds of equipment anymore.

Remember: When watching TV or at a game. When You count White len's that Nikon also has them.


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Old Jul 25, 2006, 11:29 AM   #7
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... and so does Sony(Minolta) - WHITE is not a trademark: :lol: :-) :G

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Old Jul 25, 2006, 2:40 PM   #8
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fair reply on the white. clearly my ignorance. guess I'd also seen other posts where some mention the color of the lens and associated it with Canon. Perhaps they were just referring to higher end lenses as a group.

still learning... thanks.
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