Dilemma: Nikon D3000, D5000, or Canon Rebel T1i?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by littlered03, Nov 28, 2009.

  1. littlered03

    littlered03 TPF Noob!

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    Hi everyone! I am new to the forums and have been having a dilemma over picking which camera to use as my first DSLR. This post will be kind of long, but I really need some opinions for people who actually know about the photography world in order to decide. If you could help me, I would really appreciate it.

    Right now I own a Nikon Coolpix S4. I use my camera a lot indoors in lower-light situations as well as for macro shots, portraits, and some outdoor photography. I want a DSLR so I can have more control over my shots and have better quality images. I only can spend about $900 right away on the camera body, a lens or two (maybe three if I really push it), and the neccessary accessories. I know that I am going to be buying into a system of either Nikon or Canon, depending on which camera I choose for my first. I want a camera that will work for a learner but will allow me to grow for a couple years because I am a college student and cannot afford a new body all the time, but will be able to buy lenses when I absolutely need/want them. The cameras I am choosing between are the Nikon D3000, D5000, and the Canon Rebel T1i.

    Pros and cons of each for me:
    D3000
    Pros:
    -Low price
    -Small and good fit in my very small hands
    -Has the guide mode for when I first start using it, but will let me use manual settings as well.
    -Has been told to me (and somewhat confirmed by my extensive research) that this camera is bascially the D5000 without the articulating LCD, live view, and the video mode.
    Cons:
    -I am afraid I will not be able to grow as well with it (but I don't really know why, that's just been told to me)
    -No Live view, but I'm not sure how important that would be for me
    -No video, but I'm not sure how much I would use it anyway, probably rarely
    -Have to buy special lenses that are more money that higher level cameras
    -Less MP than the other two (although I don't know how important that will be since I won't be blowing up very many photos)

    D5000
    Pros:
    -Video mode and articulating LCD, although I am not sure how much I would use these.
    -Live view, which is nice but I would mostly use the viewfinder anyway
    -More room to grow (as told to me by others, but I am not sure I understand why that is true)
    Cons:
    -$200 more than the D3000 without offering much more as far as I can see
    -Harder for me to hold. It is about the same size as the T1i, but the right side grip is much more slippery and hard for me to hold on to
    -Have to buy special lenses that are more money that higher level cameras

    T1i
    Pros:
    -Much easier to hold than the D5000.
    -More compatible with variety of lenses than Nikon choices (I think this is true anyway. Do I have to buy special autofocus lenses for this camera too?)
    -More MP than either of the Nikon choices
    -Video mode, although I am not sure how much I would use this.
    -Live view
    Cons:
    -$200 more than the D3000 without offering much more as far as I can see


    I am pretty sure I have narrowed it down to the D3000 and the T1i because if I ended up paying more for the T1i, I would be able to buy a lot more lenses without an extra cost for them being special (I believe, please correct me if I'm wrong) which I would not have with the D5000 and I do not find the articulating LCD important. Basically it comes down to price. Do you think the D3000 offers enough for me to grow for a while and is worth the extra money for the lenses (would I be able to use the special lenses on cameras that don't need them in the future?) or should I invest in the T1i (or the D5000 if for some reason that is way better than the T1i even with the special lens price) because the extra cost bring a lot more neccessary tools?

    I would really appreciate any input you could give me! Thank you!
     
  2. battletone

    battletone TPF Noob!

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    I don't know what all this special lens stuff you mention is about.

    Get the one that feels comfortable. Live view has its place IMO, video not so much, but others might love to have it.
     
  3. Wolverinepwnes

    Wolverinepwnes TPF Noob!

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    go with the nikon D5000!!!!!! its the best out of the three you've listed!
     
  4. Wolverinepwnes

    Wolverinepwnes TPF Noob!

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    Also forget about megapixels, they are not important unless you are making posters for the sides of buildings and such!
     
  5. littlered03

    littlered03 TPF Noob!

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    Thank you!

    What I mean about the lenses is this: Let's say I wanted this lens (Amazon.com: Nikon 50mm f/1.8D AF Nikkor Lens for Nikon Digital SLR Cameras: Camera & Photo), a Nikon 50mm f/1.8D AF lens for $124. This does not autofocus on the D3000 or D5000 so I would be told to buy this lens (Amazon.com: Nikon 50mm f/1.4G SIC SW Prime Nikkor Lens for Nikon Digital SLR Cameras: Camera & Photo) or this lens (Amazon.com: Nikon 35mm f/1.8G AF-S DX Lens for Nikon Digital SLR Cameras: Camera & Photo) for either $444 or $200. I do not want to have to pay more for these lenses when I could get the same thing for cheaper if the camera would power the lens.
     
  6. littlered03

    littlered03 TPF Noob!

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    Does it matter that it feel the worst in my hands and that I would have to buy more expensive lenses for it?
     
  7. battletone

    battletone TPF Noob!

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    Well that is something for a Nikon person to explain, but if Canon offers a $99 50mm 1.8 with a built in motor, I can't believe that Nikon doesn't have something comparable for a few bucks more...without going right up to $400....but then you have to ask a Nikon person if that 1.8 50mm without a motor for $100 is anywhere near as good of an optic as that $400 one..which is 1.4.

    Also, consider that it seems all Nikon lenses are more expensive than Canons. I am sure you can dig up all the studies which show them to be optically superior, but IMO I don't see the price difference when looking at everyones pictures that get posted. So IMO you have a valid point about price. I was going to switch from Canon to Nikon here, but I opted not to after looking at cost -vs- features -vs- cost. It seems like cost was the only thing other than image quality that kept showing up...and like I said, I don't see it.
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2009
  8. Provo

    Provo TPF Noob!

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    D5000 I love it
     
  9. Wolverinepwnes

    Wolverinepwnes TPF Noob!

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    if you feel more comfortable holding the canon, then don't listen to us, go for the canon, It is gonna be you using it, so if you feel more comfortable with that body then go for it! here nikon people will tell you go with nikon and canon people will tell you to go with canon! just think about the fact that when you invest in a body, what follows is all the lens you will buying for it! and thats the real choice you have to make, cuz camera bodies will come and go and will be outdated in a few years so you have to update again, but its the Lens that will stay with you forever! so look in the future and see what you'd rather be committed to nikon or canon! as it was mentioned canon lens are cheaper than nikon, whereas the image quality on the lens of nikon is better! although this doesn't matter for beginners further down the road it might be something that would matter to you! but again if you hold the canon in your hand and you feel more comfortable with it then you have your answer
     
  10. littlered03

    littlered03 TPF Noob!

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    Thank you! The Nikon D3000 actually felt best in my hand because it was smaller, but the T1i felt sturdy for being a larger size. My main focus is image quality, so if the Nikons offer better image quality, then I want to stick with them.
     
  11. Markw

    Markw No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The Nikon 50mm 1.8, 50mm 1.4, and 35mm 1.8 lenses are not the same. All are used for different purposes and in different situations (both 50mms can almost be used in the same place, but the 1.4 gives shallower DOF and allows shooting in less light.). Thinking that way is why youre having issues. Lenses, for the most part, are largely more different than the camera body, and in most cases, more important for image quality.

    Get the camera the suits your liking and needs. Think about it like this. Would you rather spend extra on each lens, and sometimes not even be able to afford a lens as there is none with a motor in it, or spend the extra money to begin with and buy any lens you will want? You will buy waay more lenses than you will bodies, so spending the extra dough in the beginning so that you can have much more freedom with lenses (the most important part) just makes sense. Not to say youre not going to want to upgrade your camera body in the future, trust me...you will, but you will get many lenses between camera body switches.

    Also think about this: when you do eventually get a new body, which you will if you stay in the hobby, it will most likely be able to accommodate any lens and have a built in motor. Then all that extra money you spent on lenses for special motors, or sacrifices you made and not bought lenses you really wanted because of the lack of a motor will have went to waste. This can all be avoided by spending a little extra money in the beginning and not wasting it on lenses with motors. (I know it wouldnt be wasting the money..until you do get that new body that has a motor..then youll want to kick yourself for not starting with that in the first place).

    Just a thought. good luck with what you choose.
    Mark

    PS. Nikon glass is renound for being superior in most cases.
     
  12. Wolverinepwnes

    Wolverinepwnes TPF Noob!

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    the D5000 will make you learn more, and gives you the extra room to grow! don't worry within a year of having that camera you'd be itching to upgrade anyways!!!! but a friend of mine has the D5000 and he loves it to death!
     

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