Hello, new and confused...

Discussion in 'Welcomes and Introductions' started by MDot, Aug 20, 2010.

  1. MDot

    MDot TPF Noob!

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    Hello all!! I'm new to the forum, but also to new the world of photography. I've always had a passion for it, but was never in a position to get a camera that I was able to afford. Just recently, my situation has changed and I was able to get a camera. I've gotten myself a Nikon D90, with a 18-105mmm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR lens. I actually just got it today, ordered it a few days ago. The part I'm confused about is this...is this a good first camera? I've done lots of research, and talked to many people that I've seen out and about taking pictures with their cameras, they all seemed to agree that the D90 was a good camera for me to learn on and grow with. This camera seemed to be a solid camera that would keep me busy for years to come.

    Now, with the announcement of the NEW D3100, I was wondering if this would be a better camera to start off with, or would the D90 still be a better deal overall for camera performance. What are your thoughts; wait for the D3100 launch in a few weeks, or keep what I have...?
     
  2. oldmacman

    oldmacman TPF Noob!

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    A friend of mine just purchased this model in March of this year and loves it. It takes great photos and is a solid performer. Gear is only part of the equation: creativity, timing, sense of light, and composition are equally important to creating good work. Be happy with your purchase and know that the 3100 is not in the same product line as the D90. My understanding (and I am willing to be corrected) is that the D3100 is in their entry line up while the D90 is part of the semi-pro camera line.
     
  3. MDot

    MDot TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for the input...It's tearing me apart trying to decide on what to do...you have brought up a good point with the D3100 being an entry level camera; my concern was that the D90 was too much camera for me, being my first DSLR. Rumors also hint of a refreshed D90, the D95, to be announced mid September. Part of me wants to wait on that, but I'm hearing that pricing on that will be about $1,200, body alone..not willing to fork over more money. I have the camera sitting here, in the box, next to my foot, calling for me to open it...hmmmm...
     
  4. oldmacman

    oldmacman TPF Noob!

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    I'm a bit of a techno geek and buy a lot of hardware. One of the best things to do after researching a product is to stop looking at more research once you have purchased. There will always be something newer, faster, better, something-er coming soon.

    Look at it this way. There are people on the forum shooting with 5 year old technology and taking awesome photos. I think the best thing that waiting will do is only push down the price of the D90. But playing the waiting game can be tricky. I remember when I was waiting for the next refresh of a Mac Pro a couple years ago. The Pros don't get refreshed that often so I kept letting good used machines go by waiting for the new product. I eventually just needed a new machine and couldn't wait any longer. Ended up getting a used Pro and the next version still didn't come out for 3 more months.
     
  5. hazeleyes1992

    hazeleyes1992 TPF Noob!

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    I don't really know about the so called professional cameras and how they work, but what I do know is that its not about the camera you use to get the professional looking pictures, its the person holding the camera..."the camera doesn't make the shots, the photographer does".
     
  6. MDot

    MDot TPF Noob!

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    Hazel, that's what I've been hearing and believe to be true. My issue here is that I'm looking at a camera that is entry level (D3100) with refreshed up to date specs, and comparing it to a camera that's going on a few years old, but still considered a professional camera. This being my first DSLR, do I get the entry level or get the one that's been proven to be a great camera. The D3100 has been reviewed, but not with the final firmware. The camera I plan on getting will be one that I plan on keeping for years to come. I've already obtained my return label for the D90 I have sitting here now; I have about 10 days to decide if I keep the D90, or wait on the D3100. I'm also considering that for the cost of a D90, I can get the D3100 and maybe 2 lenses.
     
  7. MDot

    MDot TPF Noob!

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    You're right, there will always be something newer than what you have at the moment. What made me look at the D3100 was an article that I read a few days ago on Engadget, while waiting on my D90 to arrive...being that I just got the camera today, and there's another option right around the corner, it made me curious. I'm just trying to figure out what would be the best camera for me.
     
  8. manaheim

    manaheim Jedi Bunnywabbit Staff Member Supporting Member

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    It's funny how I've not been on TPF for a couple months and I bump into one of these statements within seconds of being here.

    Well, I haven't wound up this statement in a while, so let me dust off some of the old material...

    *big breath*

    The statement you make here has some validity, but when taken to an extreme is severely flawed.

    It takes good photography skills and an artistic flair to take good pictures, this much is true. I cannot simply hand a D3 and a 24-70 2.8 to a complete amateur and expect that they will suddenly be able to take great pictures.

    HOWEVER... a lesser camera or lens WILL make good photography more challenging as it will have limitations that better equipment will NOT have that will at the VERY least make things annoying and occasionally make them actually impossible.

    For example, many lesser bodies have no dedicated simple physical control for aperture (or is it shutter speed? I always forget). You either have to contol it through some menu, or by holding down one button while flipping the wheel, and then letting the button go to adjust the other element. That's really annoying.

    Many of these lesser bodies have all kinds of limitations like this... fewer focus points, slower focusing capabilities, missing needed controls on the exterior of the camera, inability to use certain lenses, etc. etc.

    Can you SURVIVE without these things? Sure. But will a better body allow you to grow your skills more easily and meet challenging situations with more capabilities? ABSOLUTELY.

    The other thing to be aware of is that photography is a lesson in limitations. Even the BEST cameras out there simply cannot do certain things (such as truly replicate the full dynamic range of what the eye can see). Whether you spend $500 or $5000, there are limitations.

    The simple fact is you should buy as much camera as you can reasonably afford, and be comfortable with the fact that if you can only afford $600 that you'll get a camera that may periodically get in your way... but will work just fine... and if you can afford $5,000... you'll get a camera that will actually STILL periodically get in your way... but will just do it less frequently. :)

    So... yes, the photographer is key, but good equipment is also key.
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2010
  9. MDot

    MDot TPF Noob!

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    Manaheim -
    I like how you put that, and it makes perfect sense. There is one thing that is not playing much of a factor here, and that's the price. If I have to spend more for the better camera, then that's what I'll do. I guess the real question is, which one is the better camera, price aside. I'm not really sure of what features I should really be looking for that makes one better than another. I've been all over the Nikon site, comparing the 2. Has the NEW D3100 made to the same playing field as yesteryears D90, or are we still in different ballparks?
     
  10. manaheim

    manaheim Jedi Bunnywabbit Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Well the problem you have here is you're comparing an updated technlogy lesser-class body to an older technology higher-class body.

    This is similar to when the D70 came out after the D100. (USB2, for example) The D70 had some elements about it that were better than the D100, but the D100 was a more full-featured camera. (more controls, could accept a grip, etc.)

    We've seen this parallel in Nikon bodies forever, and I don't expect that will change. (I imagine Canon is the same way)

    Me, personally, I would NEVER buy a body at a level lower than the D90/D80 class if I could afford that choice. In fact, I usually recommend people buy a used D80 over a newer sub-class camera if money is that much of an issue.

    The unfortunate reality is that generally in photography... you get what you pay for. If one camera is more expensive than another, it's not just more expensive... it's better.
     
  11. MDot

    MDot TPF Noob!

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    Thanks to ALL that took the time to give their valued opinions and insights in this matter...After taking it all in, and sleeping on it, I've decided to go ahead and keep the D90.
     
  12. DirtyDFeckers

    DirtyDFeckers TPF Noob!

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    I think you are making an excellent choice. I've always been a fan of the D90. Also, it is a very capable camera that you will be able to continue to get better and better at taking photos. Don't be fooled by the higher resolution sensor and 1080P video on the D3100; it is still an entry level camera, and the D90 isn't. I honestly think the 90 is still a more advanced camera. When I first bought my D5000, I went to a local bookstore and purchased Nikon D5000 for Dummies. I can't even begin to explain how easy that book made it for me to navigate around the camera. It truly makes learning the basic and more advanced functions easy to learn. It covered everything from the on/off switch, to metering systems, to JPEG vs RAW files....Everything. I would definitely recommend it as an easy way to get headed in the right direction. I hope this info helps, and good luck with your new camera! We look forward to seeing some of your work on the forum soon!
     

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