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Old Feb 4, 2013, 7:55 PM   #1
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Default Back Again for advice. T3I or D5100

Time for me upgrade to the DSLR's. The 2 in my budget are the 5100 and the t3i. I have no lens so I would have to start this year with the kit lens on both models.
The only thing I have that might need to be changed is my flash (Speedlite 430EX II) if I go with the Nikon. But I got a killer deal on craigslist when i bought it. So selling it for a profit wouldn't bother me.

I have heard the Nikon takes better pictures but is slower to focus?

Out of the two which would you recommend?

Most of my pictures are outdoor rock crawling (Jeeps) and family indoor with the flash.

Thanks for any help.
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 6:32 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Scoobert View Post
Most of my pictures are outdoor rock crawling (Jeeps) and family indoor with the flash.

So, nothing that moves very fast. In that case, I wouldn't worry about the minor difference in AF speed.


And since you've got plenty of light, the D5100 has better dynamic range at lower ISOs than the T3i.

As for the lenses that would be suitable for the purposes, both Canon's 15-85 IS USM and Nikon's 16-85 AF-S VR are very good for your family/indoor shooting, but I'd give Canon's 55-250 IS USM the edge over Nikon's 55-200 AF-S VR, and Canon's 70-300 IS USM over Nikon's 70-300 AF-S VR.

So my inclination is to recommend the Canon, but I think you should go to a good camera store and try them both out for a while to see shich one suits you better. If you can't comfortably hold the camera, if you can't find the controls and commands you need when you need them, you'll miss shots and be dissatisfied with the camera.
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 5:38 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by TCav View Post
So, nothing that moves very fast. In that case, I wouldn't worry about the minor difference in AF speed.


And since you've got plenty of light, the D5100 has better dynamic range at lower ISOs than the T3i.

As for the lenses that would be suitable for the purposes, both Canon's 15-85 IS USM and Nikon's 16-85 AF-S VR are very good for your family/indoor shooting, but I'd give Canon's 55-250 IS USM the edge over Nikon's 55-200 AF-S VR, and Canon's 70-300 IS USM over Nikon's 70-300 AF-S VR.

So my inclination is to recommend the Canon, but I think you should go to a good camera store and try them both out for a while to see which one suits you better. If you can't comfortably hold the camera, if you can't find the controls and commands you need when you need them, you'll miss shots and be dissatisfied with the camera.
Thank you for the great reply.

Having come from the SX30 I think I will be leaning towards the canon feel as well. But since it is a step up from the old super zoom I will follow your advice and stop by the camera shop this weekend just to feel them both out.

In my mind I wanted to stay canon because that is pretty much all I have ever owned. But didn't want to end up with a sub par camera (in comparison)due to brand loyalty and just because I already had a ettl flash for it.


Thanks again for the detailed reply, I do appreciate it.
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 6:23 PM   #4
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Canon's 15-85 is very good, but if it's too rich for you, skip over the cheaper 17-85 and look at the Sigma 17-70 instead.
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Old Feb 9, 2013, 11:28 AM   #5
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The Canon T3i and Nikon's D5100 are both great DSLR's. You stated that you heard that the Nikon takes better pictures, well that's true and it's false. The Nikon does rate better than the Canon for overall still image quality, however, the Canon rates better for video. Like "TCav" stated, the Nikon D5100 has better dynamic range at lower ISO's. Also, you may want to read the sensor lab test results that was conducted on these two cameras... type in "DXO mark lab test, Canon T3i vs Nikon D5100". The Nikon beat the Canon in every category. Go to a camera shop that sells both models, see which one feels better in your hand and then ask youself which is more important for your intended use, better still image quality or video ?
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