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Old Nov 11, 2006, 10:02 AM   #11
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I really don't think that is a fair comparison. It's easy enough to feel that any viewfinder will do if you're young and have good sharp eyesight, but there are people for whom it becomes more important... I don't care how good a camera's other features are, if I cannot *see* well enough to take pictures with it (i.e. if its viewfinder isn't usable for my eyes), then it's not a good camera for my needs.

The optical viewfinder on a camera that lacks any other viewfinder is important to a lot of people, so I don't think making this a point that deserves ridiculing. Is it the most important thing about a camera? No, of course not, the camera itself needs to be good too. But with other things mostly equal (as DSLRs in the same price range actually tend to be - give or take a few features, all things considered, for the average user the results, i.e. pictures that can be taken with them, are equally good), I am really not surprised that the viewfinder is by many people considered more important than whether the camera can take 2.8 frames per second or 3.1 frames.
When I talked about high ISO performance: People tell me; "Don't be so particular!" Last time in the film era, itwas already hard enough to get usable ISO 400 results...You should be thankful today...They are all great...No need to be soconcerned aboutthe dSLR high ISO performance. They would dismiss better high ISO performance as insignificant, and I would handily be told off for being particular about high ISO performance.

When I talked about the viewfinder, people would tell me how actuallydarn important and how actuallydarnsignificant it is; I would thenbe handily told off hardif I dared todisagree with them. :roll:But now I can say ittoo; "When I just started out in photography, I didn't even have an optical viewfinder on my camera!". I even said before in the pass >>> "Everyone have their own criteria(s)".
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Old Nov 11, 2006, 10:37 AM   #12
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Ben:

In case you missed it the first two times he mentioned it, the OP decided on a Nikon D80. ;-)

It's a very good camera.

It's got a better viewfinder, more external controls, higher available ISO speeds (with finer control of ISO), the ability to use a custom tone curve, and more compared to a model like the Sony.

Does the Sony DSLR-A100 offer some benefits in other areas? Sure, there are pros and cons to any of them.

But, the OP has made up his mind to go with a Nikon D80.

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Old Nov 11, 2006, 10:54 AM   #13
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OK, sorry; I shall now have to stop...

I greatly wanted to bring in the...the eh...more powerful...Pentax K10D actually...:O:O:O

:sad:

(Never-mind, I shall save the more powerful weapon for later *wink* *wink*)


Kit price = "Below U.S. $1000" *Wink*
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Old Nov 11, 2006, 11:10 AM   #14
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But now I can say it too; "When I just started out in photography, I didn't even have an optical viewfinder on my camera!".
But I bet you had another (usable) viewfinder on it. I have no problem with LCDs (I don't like EVFs, but again, that's a personal opinion), and I don't consider an optical finder necessarily "superior" to a good LCD. (Actually I do prefer LCDs myself, having really got into photography with the digital age and with point-and-shoots with LCDs - I didn't use the small optical viewfinder that my first digital camera had as it was far less usable for me than the old 1.5'' LCD.)

What I was trying to say is that having a usable viewfinder is important for many people. On the great majority of DSLRs currently out there, the only viewfinder option is an optical one. With LCDs, in decent lighting, while a bright modern 3'' LCD is far nicer (and can be more helpful) than a 1.5'' LCD on an older model, the old LCD could still be used for "viewing", i.e. for seeing, more or less, what it is you're taking a picture of. With an optical one, if your eyes aren't so good, it becomes rather difficult to see what you're trying to take a picture of... sure, with experience, good photographers can get great shots even without seeing what they're shooting, but I think most of us still prefer to actually frame the shot in the viewfinder (whether optical, EVF or LCD).

Please note that I'm not trying to say here that any camera that doesn't have a viewfinder I don't like is "inferior", but just that people who do consider optical viewfinder quality (size, brightness) an important factor in their choice of DSLR can actually have a very good reason for it: wanting to see what it is that they'll be taking pictures of. All eyes have not been made equal, and wanting a tool that helps instead of hindering shouldn't be thought of as ridiculous.

I agree that it should not be a reason to rubbish someone's choice of a camera. But I don't think it's wrong for people to point out that viewfinder is something that someone buying a DSLR - especially if it's their first DSLR - should also take into consideration, among other factors.

In my experience, plenty of first-time DSLR buyers, especially those that have entered photography in the digital age, don't even think about the viewfinder at all when making their choice, quite a few of them not even knowing that on most models using an LCD as the viewfinder is not an option. It can come as an unpleasant surprise if one buys a camera and then finds out that the viewfinder is not really very usable for them - IMHO it's better if they're at least aware of that before making their choice. (For most people it's not likely to be an issue at all of course, but it won't hurt to be aware of it.)

And to get back on topic... congratulations to the OP on choosing the D80. It sounds like a lovely camera. The boyfriend of a friend of mine just recently got a D80 and is very happy with it, and the few picture samples I've seen have looked excellent.
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Old Nov 11, 2006, 11:16 AM   #15
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Yapyap, point accepted. :Thumbs up:

I agree that the Nikon D80 is a great dSLR camera.

The other 2 dSLR cameras are also just as great.

Regards.

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"And all shall end happily"

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Old Nov 11, 2006, 11:30 AM   #16
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Ben,

As you can see, people feel very strongly about their cameras. Choosing a camera is very personal and if someone drops a large sum of money on a camera, they have their reasons. Like it or not, their reasons are their reasons and no one can change that. That doesn't make it right or wrong. Again it is a personal choice. Obviously you are beginning to see the dangers of over research, and how trying to read and review evertything, just makes it more confusing. As i said before, your skills as a photographer have a greater impact on your images, than minute analysis of every feature and benefit. There are compromises with every choice, and ways to work around those compromises once you recognize them and learn how to deal with them. It is a bit naive to say your equipment doesn't matter...(it does especially as you progress to higher levels), but this isn't that far from the truth. Photography is a bit like golf (another expensive habitof mine)that respect. Better clubs won't automatically make you a better golfer (and in some cases make make you worse!!) The original poster has made the best decision for him, which may or may not be right for everyone else. Stop thinking in such absolutes, and the process will be much easier for you.


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Old Nov 11, 2006, 11:47 AM   #17
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rjseeneythanks, I accept it.

BTW, I saw your photos at the critique & technique section of this forum, and they are well taken.

Regards.


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Old Nov 11, 2006, 12:11 PM   #18
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BenjaminXYZ wrote:
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I agree that the Nikon D80 is a great dSLR camera.

The other 2 dSLR cameras are also just as great.
The next time you start quoting a lot of reviews and forum posts, I'll try to make sure you don't lose track of this one.:blah:
:-)

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