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Old Mar 25, 2013, 8:23 AM   #1
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Default Camera suggestion - DSLR Nikon D3000 vs others P&S

Hi,

I would like to buy a camera.

The first one I bought was a fujitsu and I was very disappointed photos taken in low light.

So I have some concerns of buying one new P & S.

I saw a Nikon D3000 for $ 298 which is quite my budget.

My goal is to photograph everyday scenes : my kids, holidays etc...

But I want to have nice pictures: very few grains, good quality with low lighting.

I know that the D3000 is an old camera and it can not take video.

Is it a good compromise for taking good pictures or are there some P & S cameras that will take very good photos.

Thank you for your help.
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Old Mar 25, 2013, 11:32 AM   #2
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the D3000 is an old camera, and without the right lenses, no DSLR can do everything. and even so-so lenses for DSLRs cost more than some digicams. newer digicams can shoot great pics if you take the time to learn how to use their various modes and features. here's a lower light pic i took with a panasonic fz150


Gatling gun by itspcake, on Flickr

this is no longer a new camera, and can be had for under $400. it has a handheld twilight mode (which i didn't use on the above pic, btw) for lower light shooting, a 24x zoom lens, full manual modes and is a very nice camera overall. the newer version, the fz200, has a faster lens, but it costs more.
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Old Mar 25, 2013, 12:35 PM   #3
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Thank you for your comments...I really appreciate it.
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Old Mar 25, 2013, 5:46 PM   #4
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G'day OP

May I suggest that you consider two things
1- your style of photos ... what subjects you wish to photograph, and
2- your budget ... for both the initial camera purchase & ongoing additions

Yes the Nikon is a good camera [presuming it has the basic 18-55mm 3x zoom lens too]
But if/when you want more zoom, you are back on the treadmill for searching and buying another lens

The 50 - 200mm & 70-300mm are both very popular, but each costs more than a superzoom like the panasonic FZ200

So before you go too far, you need to think ahead a bit !

Hope this helps
Regards, Phil
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Old Mar 25, 2013, 9:06 PM   #5
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Thank you very much Ozzie.

Yes, the D3000 I saw, comes with a 18-55 mm lens.

My budget is about 300$.

I'm a newbie in photo and I don't think I'm willing to be a great photograph. So I don't think that I'm going to spend money few month after for a new lens or other additions to this camera.

The style of photos I'm going to shoot is pretty simple : landscape, people, family. Very, very basic.

I'm pretty sure that most of P&S camera can do these kind of photos.

Should I rely on more recent P&S cameras with more recent technology or should I rely on this "old" technology but rely on what DLSR are meant for : nice and clear photos.
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Old Mar 26, 2013, 4:34 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by olivpadr View Post
.... My budget is about 300$. .... Should I rely on more recent P&S cameras with more recent technology or should I rely on this "old" technology but rely on what DLSR are meant for : nice and clear photos.
Not sure what all your P&S camera options would be
Maybe Simon40 could help with this one

Regards, Phil
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Old Mar 27, 2013, 5:48 AM   #7
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Ozzie- thanks for the endorsement...!
olivpadr- if you'd be happy with the limitations of the standard 18-55mm kit lens (as in zoom range) on the Nikon and are not concerned with size/portability- then yes,the Nikon will produce better images than pretty much ANY point and shoot- even if you were using the "auto" mode- though DSLR's really come into their own if one knows how/when to use the PASM modes to really get the best out of them...
Point and shoot options are few and far between with regards low light use- as their sensors are smaller (very much a hindrance for quality results) and their autofocus systems are not up to DSLR standard- both in speed and accuracy indoors...
One decent compromise I've found is Nikons V1/J1....
A larger than usual (for a P+S) 1" sensor offering decent low light quality (though not quite DSLR standard) and it's AF system is certainly quick (especially outdoors)- quicker than my recently departed D5000 DSLR in fact... food for thought if you'll be shooting fidgety subjects...
The V1/J1 also shoots movies...
Some "low light" with a V1...
http://forums.steves-digicams.com/ni...d-figures.html
Some action with a V1...
http://forums.steves-digicams.com/ni...on-2013-a.html
Close ups...
http://forums.steves-digicams.com/ni...ng-spring.html

Whilst the V1/J1 have PASM modes (albeit accessible by menu only..) I'd say good results are obtainable by using the "auto" mode- as was the case inside the cathedral...
The only choice with regards Nikon's "1" system is- do you go with the J1's built in flash or the V1's viewfinder...?
The only fly in the ointment at present with the V/J system is the limited lens range and they're not exactly cheap either... though maybe not a problem if you'd be happy with the kit lens's range...

If something really small- and still with decent low light IQ- is your bag, you could do worse than the bijou Canon S100 or S110...
http://www.cameralabs.com/reviews/Canon_PowerShot_S100/

Last edited by SIMON40; Mar 27, 2013 at 11:16 AM.
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Old Mar 27, 2013, 12:53 PM   #8
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Thank you very, very, very much.
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Old Mar 27, 2013, 1:52 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by olivpadr View Post
Thank you very much Ozzie.

Yes, the D3000 I saw, comes with a 18-55 mm lens.

My budget is about 300$.

I'm a newbie in photo and I don't think I'm willing to be a great photograph. So I don't think that I'm going to spend money few month after for a new lens or other additions to this camera.

The style of photos I'm going to shoot is pretty simple : landscape, people, family. Very, very basic....
hmm the one thing I notice is absent from your list is wildlife. This would seem to imply you don't need a zoom of any great length.

You did mention low light performance, to that end I will point out that the 18-55mm kit DSLR lens is not going to give this to you, you will need to invest in additional lenses to get the low light performance.

Given your budget I would suggest considering the last (not current) generation of enthusiast P&S cameras. These tend to have bigger sensors than a standard P&S and also more importantly brighter (faster) lenses that will allow better performance in low light.

Four to consider; Olympus ZX-1, Panasonic LX5, Nikon Coolpix p7100 and the Canon S95

They all have similar lens ranges and sensor size, and they should fit the budget if you shop around.

If you want to go with something that will allow you to reach out further the Panasonic FZ series would be a good option, an FZ150 just might fit your budget but I would save for the FZ200 if you can swing it.


So yeah in summary a DSLR is going to produce better pictures in an absolute sense but a DSLR is a system that includes lenses. If you plan on growing into a hobby then for sure start with a DSLR that can be expanded or a mirror-less ILCs like the e-pm1 you could get for $200 in the hot deals. Either way you'd be shopping for last generation as the current generation is outside your budget. And either way you'd be spending more over time to get more lenses, but if you can see it growing into a hobby then go for an ILC (interchangeable lens camera).

If you don't have any interest in doing it as a hobby I think you're best served by an enthusiast P&S or a bridge camera like the FZ series. While you will have a smaller sensor and that has it's limits the overall cost to own will be less as you won't be buying any additional lenses down the road.
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Last edited by ramcewan; Mar 27, 2013 at 1:58 PM.
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Old Mar 27, 2013, 8:59 PM   #10
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I really appreciate all these comments and answers you provided. I have some work to do now. A lot of readings I presume in order to make the good choice. Thank you all very much.
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