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Old Sep 20, 2008, 11:03 PM   #1
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I know there's another thread on this topic, but the responses seem to focus on the Nikon D90, which is out of my price range.

I was all set to buy my Canon XSi today, but having a last look in the store I thought I'd check out similarly-priced Nikons. I've always been a Canon guy... film cameras, then the A85, now my S2... But there's so much Nikon hype and Canon trashing online that I thought I'd keep an open mind. Initially I thought the Nikon talk might be the rebel attitude, like the guys that insist Firefox is better than IE, Macs are better than PCs, that kinda thing...
  • Anyway, the XSi and the D80 are both $799 (CDN) + tax. [/*]
  • Both come with an 18-55 mm kit lens. [/*]
  • XSi 12 MP; D80 10 MP (not that that matters). [/*]
  • The XSi is light and easier to lug around; the D80 feels like a more solid camera, rubberized all round. [/*]
  • And now I'm reading that there may be focus problems with random XSIs.[/*]
Any advice would be appreciated. My subjects are mostly friends and family at functions and social gatherings, vacation shots of culture and architecture, etc., some nature and landscape, lots of our dog...regular stuff.

:?
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Old Sep 20, 2008, 11:53 PM   #2
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Boldstar-

Does starting a new thread change anything? I don't think so! If you cannot stand the heat in the kitchen, Boldstar, perhaps you had best re-think the equation.

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Old Sep 21, 2008, 12:32 AM   #3
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Over and above the differences you've already mentioned:

First, the kit lens for the Canon is better than the one for the Nikon, and it's stabilized.

Second, the XSi has 'Live View' that the D80 doesn't.

Third, the focus problem seems to be real but not necessarily prevalent. If you buy one and have the problem, you'd be better off if you purchased it from a local retailer with a good return policy than from an on-line retailer.

BTW, there are alternatives to the XSi and D80. Have you considered something from Pentax or Sony?
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Old Sep 21, 2008, 12:50 AM   #4
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mtclimber wrote:
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Boldstar-

Does starting a new thread change anything? I don't think so! If you cannot stand the heat in the kitchen, Boldstar, perhaps you had best re-think the equation.
This new thread was designed to move away from a focus on the Nikon D90. If you look back, you'll notice that the member who started the firstthread was concerned with the release of the new Nikon, where as I am not.

"Heat in the kitchen?" "Re-think the equation?" I'm not aware of any heat, or a particular equation. I'm just looking for good advice, as opposed to a seemingly personal bias against the Canon camera.

If you have some actual adviceregarding features of either camera, or relevant experience with either camera to speak of, I'd love to have your input. Otherwise...
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Old Sep 21, 2008, 12:58 AM   #5
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TCav wrote:
Quote:
First, the kit lens for the Canon is better than the one for the Nikon, and it's stabilized.

Second, the XSi has 'Live View' that the D80 doesn't.

Third, the focus problem seems to be real but not necessarily prevalent. If you buy one and have the problem, you'd be better off if you purchased it from a local retailer with a good return policy than from an on-line retailer.

BTW, there are alternatives to the XSi and D80. Have you considered something from Pentax or Sony?
Thank you TCav, for your intelligent and on-topic feedback. You make some very good points and I appreciate your input.

I will definitely inquire about return policies before I make the purchase. The local electronics store where I try to direct my business will likely be accommodating. But I'll ask to make sure.

I have looked at Sony, the A350 to be specific. But I did not like the flip screen. While the feature might be handy, it seemed somewhat flimsy compared to the swivel-style screen I'm currently using on my Canon S2. But the condition of the screen that I was inspecting might have been sup-paras a result of it beinga demo, likely man-handled by a few hundred people before me. I will have another look. But no, I have not looked at any Pentax models.

If you were advising a friend about an entry-level DSLR, which do you think you'd recommend? Considering the subject matter I mentioned above.


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Old Sep 21, 2008, 8:33 AM   #6
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Boldstar wrote:
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If you were advising a friend about an entry-level DSLR, which do you think you'd recommend? Considering the subject matter I mentioned above.
Given what you want to shoot, either the XSi or the D80 with their respective kit lenses would be fine. Some time later you may wanta longer lens for nature shooting, and/or a wider lens for landscape/architecture, and those needs can easily be filled for any camera body. In other words, you're requirements for a camera don't require anything extraordinary.

If you need 'Live View', then the Pentax'K20D is more that the others that were mentioned. It goes for $1,000 (US). But since you're considering the D80, then 'Live View' might not be a requirement, and you should look at the Sony A200 and the Pentax K200D as well. The Sony A200 uses the same body as the A350 you tried, so if you didn't mind the feel of the A350, the A200 might be a good choice for you.

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Old Sep 21, 2008, 10:32 AM   #7
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Thanks for the input TCav. I sorta thought that most entry-level DSLRs would work for my purposes.

I'll check out the other models you mentioned, but I may end up settling on the Canon. My father and a few other friends have Canons and I may have the option to borrow lenses, etc., to try them out.
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Old Sep 21, 2008, 11:02 AM   #8
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Boldstar wrote:
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I'll check out the other models you mentioned, but I may end up settling on the Canon. My father and a few other friends have Canons and I may have the option to borrow lenses, etc., to try them out.
A very good reason for selecting one brand dSLR over another. Not only can you borrow lenses, you can also get support (not that you should stop coming here.)
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Old Sep 21, 2008, 11:19 AM   #9
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Thanks for explaining, Boldstar-

That makes sense and I happen to agree with you. The more we can understand where you are coming from, the better we can tailor a solution to your requirements.

The Sony A-200 is well priced but it has been noted that using RAW is the preference, as the JPEG format photos are of lesser quality. Steve has done a review of the A-200 with that comment.

The Pentax K-200 has received good reviews with the comment that photos directly from the camera seem to be a bit soft.

The Canon XSi is an excellent choice, as long as you have a retailer who is willing to work with you, or if you have a nearby Canon Service Center.

The Nikon D-80 body is now selling for below $(US) 600.00, and while being last year'd model, so as to speak, it might represent a very good value.

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