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mikedizzle Jan 24, 2006 7:07 PM

So I think I might getcrucified forasking, but I'll ask anyway.

I've been considering the new D50 since the price is so reasonable. But if I havea decent 5 or 7MP digital point and shoot camera, what advantages does a dSLR offer? I know enthusiasts like to get creative with manual settings, but couldn't Photoshop (and a host of other software) achieve the same objective?

I don't need a super zoom, nor do I need any better resolution than 5 or 7 MP. What I am missing?

Thanks in advance for your comments.

neekak9 Jan 24, 2006 9:14 PM

Okay. I'll bite.

What kind of pictures do you want to take with the D50.

Also, I was in you position about six months ago. I'll tellyou more later.


DocX Jan 24, 2006 10:33 PM

I was useing a Fuji finepix S7000. It will shoot in 12mp mode but usualy used 6mp as the 12mp ones were a little soft and take up a lot more hard drive space. The biggest reason I bought the Nikon D50 was the image quality. The pictures Im able to take with the Nikon are just so sharp and clean and the color is better. Looking at close ups of very detailed things like peoples eyes and hair is where you really see a differnce in the noise generated by each camera. The nikon is just about as noise free as Ive seen. That was my reason for switching. Ive made great 20x30s with the 6mp images from the Nikon so there no problem there. With the new Canons the 8mp images give you a bit more cropping room and a very clean image as well. I just thought the Nikon was easyer to use and felt better in my hand.

Hope this helps, Mark

mikedizzle Jan 24, 2006 11:47 PM

I can't say that I've got any specific type of shots in mind. I've got two little girls and I enjoy taking pictures of them (especially at the beach), but I would also use it on vacations, scenery, etc.

Plus, if I do get the D50, would you recommend I keep a small point and shoot as well for the everyday stuff, or would the D50 be good for anything?

Stephen Hopkins Jan 25, 2006 1:38 AM

I'm another recent convert to the dSLR world coming from a 5yr line of point & shoot cameras of varying quality. My main complaint with point and shoot cameras (as mentioned by others) was noise, especially noise associated with the "high" ISO settings on point & shoot cameras. I quote the word "high" because none of the cameras offered especially high ISO settings but their highest settings (400 was the max on all I ever owned w/out decreasing resolution). I wanted the sensitivity of higher ISO settings without the associated noise. My other big complaint with all the point & shoot cameras I've had is compression noise due to overly aggressive JPEG compression. While the last couple I had (Fuji S5000, Kodak P850) offered RAW shooting it took up too much memory, slowed down shooting, and required MUCH more post processing. While both of these problems can be remedied in post processing (I used Neat Image with decent results) it added another step to the process and softened my images.

What lead me on the path to dSLR was my purchase a year and a half ago of the Kodak DX6490. It was a super-zoom (10x) 4mp camera with fairly extensive manual settings including most if not all available on consumer level dSLRs (P,A,S,M, ISO, White Balance, Exposure Compensation). I loved the control and quickly fell in love with the zoom and the way the larger cameras felt in my hand. But the ISO and compression noise issues didn't go away. They didn't go away with either of the similar cameras I tried after that (Fuji S5000, Kodak P850). I finally realized that the only way to get the higher ISO performance, low compression noise, overall picture quality and feel i wanted was to move to a dSLR.

After a month or so of research, tracking down various online deals (many of which were too good to be true for a reason) I decided the D50 was the camera for me. The main reasons I picked it were feel, build quality, high ISO performance, and compatibility w/ the SD memory I already had. I chose the D50 over the Rebel XT because it felt better in my hand (size and fit/finish) and the price difference was substantial. I was surprised to find out I could get the body as cheap at my local Wolf Camera as I could on eBay or anywhere else online (many of which were grey market). I then found a great deal on a Tamron 28-300mm F/3.5 XR LD Di lens ($144 used from KEH, SRP $799, Street $399) so I didn't have to give up the high-zoom capabilities I'd come to love with the point & shoot cameras.

As for having a point & shoot that depends on how adverse you are to carrying the D50. If I was going on a nature hike or to a sporting event (or anywhere else an expensive piece of electronics isn't in danger) I would probably carry the D50 (with neck strap). At an amusement park, play, formal even or anywhere the D50 would be obtrusive or in danger I would probably carry my fiancé's Nikon 4100 compact point & shoot. It's definitely nice to have the option of the right camera to fit the occasion.

JHVOLTZ Jan 25, 2006 7:23 AM

There is in my city a local store, which sell old SLR camera, lenses, accessories and etc...It is possible to use an old lenses, instead of give the default "kit" that comes with the camera,then only buy the body, in this case the D50 ?

rjseeney Jan 25, 2006 7:45 AM

If you're looking at the D50, the kit lens (although not a professional quality lens) does offer a lot of bang for the buck. The price is right and it is fairly sharp, especially when stopped down. For the $159 or so, you won't find anything in its range that is better. For a few $'s more, you could get the 18-70 that is packaged with the D70s...for the extra money you get a better zoom range and better build quality. If you go with one of the older film slr lenses, you lose the wide end. Most start at either 24 or 28mm which translates to 36mm or 42mm after the crop factor. I would say the quality of these consumer level lenses (even though they are cheaper used) is not as good as the digital only lenses.

goomer Jan 25, 2006 1:52 PM

I just purchased ther D50 myself after many years of point and shoot , and have researched the heck out of this point and shoot versus DSLR debate. Although it's true that the Point and shoots are becoming incredibly sophisticated and offering amazing quality, the most compelling difference in everything I have read and seen is the ability to utilize a variety of lenses with the DSLR. The flexibility that this offers can not be underemphasized. Although the glass in the point and shoots has come a long way, the fact remains that it is fixed and permanent. In the short time I have had my D50, I have encountered numerous situations where a point and shoot could simply not cope. But with the right lens, the DSLR has no issues whatsoever. Being able to use a variety of lenses for both complicated shooting situations, and to artistic effect are by far the DSLR's greatest strengths.

neekak9 Jan 25, 2006 10:39 PM

I have had my D50 for about five months now. Up until about two months ago I hadn't touched my Sony P-150 7.2mp point n shoot. The D50 is my all time best purchase even outside the photo world. I wouldn't trade it for anything....well maybe a D200 but I am sure I would miss the D50.

Last week my wife and two kids went to a childrens museum and for the first time I missed my Sony.

Here is my suggestion........If you can make really good money selling you point n shoot then I would sell it ASAP!!!! Buy the D50 and by the time you realize you need another p&s they will be better and cheaper than the one you currently have. If you can't get dirt for the old p&s then just keep it for a fishing trip.

I sold my Sony P-150 on ebay around Thanksgiving for $363 with a 512mb card. In the x-mas adds you could have bought the newer Sony P-200 for $299 (without card though).

Final thoughts.........get the D50. You will never understand what we are all telling you until you try it for yourself. I have used the Canon Rebel XTand my best buddy owns the Minolta 5D and none of them in my opinion can touch the D50 from all aspects.


melt1109 Jan 26, 2006 8:08 AM

I will open with my standard caveat that I am a super dSLR newbie and photographer. And, I will add that I have very little experience with the advanced P&S as my old Olympus D-580 2MP with no optical zoom is quite old.

However, I did extensive research and consulted the fine advisers on this board and perused other boards and reviews before making my decision to go with the D50 2 lens kit.

I too would mention that the kit lenses are high quality offering 18-55 (f/3.5-5.6) and 55-200 (F4-5.6) which of course means you don't have the full f range through the breadth of either lens, but for the money and according to my research quite a lot of bang for the buck because it is a (high quality) kit, I think the 2 kit lens would be a great investment given the range of shots the 'kids' may provide.

Original post quote: "I don't need a super zoom, nor do I need any better resolution than 5 or 7 MP. What I am missing?"

I don't think you are missing anything as you have sensed that an all-in-one versus a dSLR (and with my bias, through lack of experience) the D50 is a great buy. I agree that once you hold that camera you will experience the 'it just feels right' feeling. Even as a newbie, I had great fun on 'auto' just out of the box.

The options for your growth and experience with this camera are in all probability, endless (endless: by the time you appreciate all you can do and wear the sucker out, you'll advance to something else). The limitations, unless you instantly master all the great photography nuances-which you might and hope you do,are few, based on my reading of your post. The forums recommendation (in another post of mine) for the new lens (I think, 18-200 VR) at street of about $750 that won't be out until next month (I think)would be a great investment based on my research if you went body only. Speaking of VR, you'll have to know that though a steady hand can get some of those shots in which a tripod is warranted, fact is, that sometimes, a tripod is warranted. But that is not a limitation of the D50 or dSLR or even megazoom P&S, just a photography truism as far as I can tell. (Others can post the situations when this would be the probable case.)

My only comment is that I'm a little freaky about worrying about getting dirt and debris on the sensor upon a lens change. When you said 'beach', I just took a deep breath. With my 2 lens kit, I'd be tempted to get a good idea of the shots I could get with each lens and put that lens on before I left home and plan NO lens change at the beach. But, that's just a freaky thing for me. Of course, if I do screw up and get the sensor dirty, the local camera shop will professionally clean it for $35.

Hope this helps. As always folks, correct my inevitable mistakes. You've picked a great camera to invest in. Let us know what you decide and your impressions once you purchase, regardless of the choice. Good luck,


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