Desperate for advice!! Nikon D5000, D90, Canon T1i or 50D??

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by flmomx5, Feb 17, 2010.

  1. flmomx5

    flmomx5 TPF Noob!

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    I'm looking to upgrade to a DSLR and pick up rather quickly on how to use equipment. I have 5 small children who are active in school functions and sports. I need a camera that can take good action shots in low light. I have researched DSLR's online and am more confused than when I started! I have it narrowed down to Nikon D5000, D90, Canon T1i and 50D. I would SINCERELY appreciate any advice anyone can offer me. I have gone to Best Buy and played with each of these cameras and am comfortable with any of them. I just want what's going to give me the best pics. And of course, the lower the price, the better. But I'll tackle that issue later!:D Thank you so much in advance!!!
     
  2. PhotoXopher

    PhotoXopher TPF Noob!

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    D5000 for your described usage if you're concerned with price, then slap on a Sigma 70-200 f/2.8 HSM Macro or Sigma 18-50 f/2.8 HSM Macro and have fun!

    Adorama has a good price on their D5000 refurb body only right now ($499):
    http://www.adorama.com/INKD5000R.html
     
  3. Santa Gertrudis

    Santa Gertrudis TPF Noob!

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    I love my D5000! For the price, it's hard to beat!
     
  4. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    You need to worry more about what lenses you get, since they control how much light can get into the camera.

    The quicker you can get light into the camera the faster the shutter speed you can use to stop the kids motion.

    As far as "pick up rather quickly on how to use equipment" you'll soon discover making nice photo's with a dSLR is quite a bit more difficult than many people antisipate.

    PhotoXopher recommended a couple of 3rd party lenses that do a good job of getting light into the camera.

    The key number is f/2.8, even better is f/1.8 or f/1.4 but as the number gets smaller the cost of the lens tends to go up.

    The other numbers like 70-200 mm and 18-55 mm describe how much magnification each lens will provide. The 18-55 is for wide angle and normal (about what your eye normally sees) and the 70-200 is for reach or magnification.

    Of the cameras you listed the D90 has the best low light performance and feature set per $, IMO.
     
  5. flmomx5

    flmomx5 TPF Noob!

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    Thank you to all 3 of you!! Do you recommend that I purchase the body of a camera and the lens separately? I originally planned of buying from best buy or walmart where I can purchase the additional insurance, but I find some good deals online. What is your opinion on where to purchase and do you recommend addt'l insurance? Thanks!!
     
  6. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    You can buy just a D90 body and pick what lens/lenses you want. http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/580241-REG/Nikon_25446_D90_SLR_Digital_Camera.html

    I wouldn't recommend buying an extended warranty. They are huge profit makers for the sellers since most people who buy it never use it.

    If you check, it's likely your homeowners insurance will cover any camera gear, not used for commercial purposes, you buy.

    Nikon warranties their camera bodies, to the original owner only, for 1 year. They warranty their lenses for 5 years.

    As far as warranty, if you decide on Nikon, their US warranty only applies to gear intended for sale here in the US, and they keep track of the serial numbers.

    I buy most of my camera gear online from highly reputable sellers like www.bhphotovideo.com, my favorite online camera gear store. I have also purchased from Amazon.com, BuyDig.com, and Best Buy.
     
  7. flmomx5

    flmomx5 TPF Noob!

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    What held me back from the D5000 is that it's highest ISO is 3200 compared to the 6400 that the D90 and T1i have and the 12800 of the 50D and if I'm shooting in low light, don't I need a higher ISO?? With shooting alot of sports and kids, the 50D has the fastest shooting speed at 6.3fps, the D90 has the farthest zoom when it comes to which lens it comes with. I don't need the video feature. Even the T1i shoots at 3.5fps which is better than the Sony I use now that's at 1.6fps. Ugggh, I don't know what to do!!!
     
  8. bigtwinky

    bigtwinky No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The key is not just a high ISO number, but a high USABLE ISO number.

    Just because the T1i lists 6400 or the 50D 12800 does NOT mean that the images will be very pretty at that high ISO. My XSI lists an ISO range up to 1600. I almost never shoot at 1600, and even rarely at 800. 400 is my limit with my camera for high ISO to get a CLEAN image.

    There are noise reduction softwares that can clean up the images, but often times as the loss of sharpness in the detail.

    So don't go by specs only. If high ISO is a concern in body, look at the D90 or 50D. The entry level T1i or D5000 are a step below. Fast glass (2.8 or lower) will obviously be a huge benefit to keep that ISO low.

    It comes down to overall budget. If you are doing sports, kids or not, you need to look at a longer zoom lens with a wide aperture... 70-200 f/2.8 with IS (or VR Nikon equivalent). This lens alone should run you from 1500-2000.

    I would go with D90 or 50D and a fast lens. Budget lenses and bodies are usually not the best thing when it comes to photography. A lower budget body or lens will be enough for some people, but not for everyone.

    The one thing I hate is buying something cheaper and then always wondering "what if I bought the better lens/body?"
     
  9. itznfb

    itznfb TPF Noob!

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    The D5000 has the same ISO range as the D90. 200-3200 native with 100-200 and 3200-6400 available through expanded ISO range. The D90 is the only model you listed that is capable of making good use of that expanded range. The D5000 looks terrible at ISO6400 whereas the D90 is usable at that ISO. You definitely want to stay as low as possible though. In my experience the expanded range on the 50D was pretty bad. What I liked about the 50D was the native ISO100.
     
  10. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    You can buy longer lenses.

    Here is a photo of a D90 with a 150-500 mm Sigma zoom lens on it that I use to shoot soccer:

    [​IMG]
     
  11. flmomx5

    flmomx5 TPF Noob!

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    Thanks so much for all of the advice so far. Keith, that is one heck of a camera!! I don't know that I am ready for something like that, although I would love to eventually learn how to use it. Sounds like recommendations are leaning towards the D90 over the 50D. Now if it comes down to budget (and between the T1i and the D5000) which do you recommend? And can I get some opinions about buying refurbished? I was wanting to make my purchase at walmart where I can purchase additional insurance ($120 for 3 years covering normal wear and tear). It came in handy when I had an issue with my current point and shoot. What are your thoughts?
     
  12. bigtwinky

    bigtwinky No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The T1i and D5000 are very similar. While I'm not a fan of the higher megapixels of the T1i, it has a much much nicer LCD screen.

    So... T1i > D5000
    D90 > 50D

    But again, thats just opinion.
     

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