Could use some help selecting a body


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Nov 8, 2015
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Hi all,

I'v been reading a lot about camera's lately but it's really hard making the right choice.
I hope you guys can help me out.

Currently i own a nice old crop camera:
Canon 550D
Canon EFS 18-135mm
Sigma EFS 10mm 2,8f Fisheye
Canon EF 50mm 1,8f

I use the camera for portraits, landscapes, nature, animals, architeture, food and for my work i shoot picture inside buildings (can be dark).
The 550D is nice camera to start with but it's getting old and i reached the limites of the camera some time ago..

My biggest problems with the 550D is:
- Shooting in low light;
- Overall picture quality/clearity;
- Not fast enough (focussing and writing).

I love to take the step to the next level or even een level higher.
Price range of body max 1500 euro (doens't mean i want to spend it all ;)..)

I would love to hear your opionion what might be good camera for me, (i prefer Canon and Nikon even though i don't know anything about Nikon camera's but level should be the same as Canon, so i hear)

- Canon, Nikon
- high end crop or mid Full frame (like 70D - 6D - Nikon?)
- Buy now or is it worth the wait (max 1 year) till a new model will/might come out.
- Prolly need to buy a new allround zoomlens so dont worry about crop-full frame

- i am affraid to buy a high end crop camera with a new lens and after 2 years make the step to full frame. - buying a crop camera with a nice EF lens doesnt sound like a good plan to me...

I also added 2 pic's i made which i think miss some detail/clearity/quality.

Thanks for reading and hope you can help me out!

Cheers, Tim


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You will only see a big difference in low light image quality if you go full frame, but if you spend 1500 you'll only have a body and a 50mm as the other lenses work.

The Canon 70d would give slightly better hi iso quality, focus and write to card faster, possibly you could trade fisheye and 18-135 an f get a tokina 11-16f2.8 and sigma 17-50 OS.

Faster lenses equal less noise and better autofocus, maybe that suits your needs
Hi Jaomul,

Thanks for your reply, much appreciated.

I know i have to buy new lensens when i move up to full frame or Nikon. Dont worry about that, i'm willing to pay extra for 1 or 2 good lenses to get me started again.
Full frame should also give better overall quality with daylight i guess??

You make it sound like the 70D (and maybe even full frame) isn't a really big upgrade (quality wise) from my 550D, is that correct?

Thanks again for you help!

I'm looking for a body that gives me better image quality (than 550D), is faster (than 550D) and is good in low light.
I'd like to grow as photographer and for that i need more options than on my current 550D and the upgrade shouldnt be to small small else i need to upgrade in 2 year again..

Options so far:
Canon 6D
Canon 70D
Nikon ??

And wait or buy now? (I rahter buy asap ofc, but if its wise to wait , i'll wait..)
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6D and either a sigma 24-105mm f4 Art or a Canon 24-70mm f2.8L II if your budget streches that far. I dont really know enough about the Nikons to compare.
I think a 70d would be an improvement in everything over a 550d, but image quality will only be slightly improved. I had a 550d and really thought it was great but it certainly is no where as good as a full frame where image quality is concerned.

A friend had a 6d with which he took amazing photos in all types of lighting conditions. It really is great at lower iso. If you read reviews some complaints are there about it's simple autofocus and lack of points, but it did seem to work very well.

If you do go a 6d you'll need to sell all but your 50mm lens, so really you are not stuck in any one system as the 50 should sell easy. I'd definitely look also at a Nikon d610 with a 24-85mm kit lens. The Nikon is similar price to 6d, has better dynamic range, faster frames per second, twin cars slots and a more customisable auto focus with slightly more resolution also. On paper at least it is better specced than a Canon 6d.

Both excel at high iso, especially compared to your 550d, my choice would be the Nikon
On another note, for writing to the SD speed make sure you are using a Fast SD card. It can have significant speed improvement over slower cards.

Many of use use a Sansdisk Extreme Pro 95mbps (read) /90Mbps (write) card. ==> SanDisk Extreme PRO SDHC/SDXC UHS-I Memory Card
These are just my own personal opinions and experiences, so please consider them as such.

Obviously whenever someone asks the question "what should I buy" everyone and their brother is going to have an opinion, particularly in the Canon vs. Nikon debate. That said, while a full frame sensor in either brand will give you better low light performance, it's been my experience that full frame or otherwise, Nikon is hands down better than Canon on this issue, full frame or otherwise. I switched to Nikon a few years back after my Canon 40D took a dump and I encountered some REALLY nasty problems with their customer service (long story), however after having purchased a refurbed Nikon D90, I noticed an immediate improvement over the comparable Canon 40D, both in terms of image quality and low light performance. ANY digital camera will give you a fair degree of noise at higher ISO's, however I found the Nikon to not only have higher ISO ranges in general (with the comparable model Canon) and produce less noise, but that the noise is also MUCH easier to clean up in Camera RAW/Photoshop. Both with my D90 and my recently purchased D7000, most of the high ISO noise usually cleans up quite nicely with a simple adjustment of the Luminance slider in ACR. The Nikon's also have the distinct advantage that you can use older manual Nikon lenses...something you just can NOT do with Canon EOS as Canon abandoned their older customers when they went to digital. If you're planning to replace lenses anyways, I have to feel this weighs heavily in Nikon's favor as there's a lot of really great older Nikkors out there that can often be had for a VERY modest price.

The simple truth is that personally, I will NEVER go back to Canon. They're decent enough until they break, but their customer service is a total scam...I've even read a great many complaints from people who've had problems getting Canon gear repaired that was still under warranty. That said however, even if I hadn't of had the problems I did, knowing what I know now and having had to chance to compare the two in practical use, given the chance to do it over again, I'd go with Nikon in a heartbeat. Better images, better selection of lenses and comparable's hard to go wrong there. Again I'm sure there are people here who will absolutely swear by Canon, however from my own experience, Nikon is the better all around choice.

Now on the full frame vs. APS-C, this is just my own personal opinion however as a semi-pro freelancer, I really have no problem at all with the smaller least in terms of image quality. For what and how I shoot, even my Nikon D90 did an outstanding job. More to the point, I've never had a single client come back to me and say "these are great images but....". I won't speak for others, however every paying customer I've ever had has been more concerned about the quality of my work rather than what specific gear I used. Remember, a better camera will NOT make you a better photographer. -If- I were to shoot sports or action or something of that nature, where the speed of a full frame would be an advantage, my opinion might be different...however for most of my own interests - nature, landscape, animals, architecture and even stage/event photography, the APS-C really does an outstanding job.

With that in mind, my advice would be to make your decision based on your own specific needs. These days it's very easy for a lot of people to get caught up in the whole "I want...I want...I want..." trap. Walk into a camera store these days and it's just sooooo easy to get swept away by all the shiny new toys with sales people who spin yarns about all the latest features. For myself however, money just don't grow on trees so I do have to be quite pragmatic about my purchases. If I truly need something..if there's a feature or something I will genuinely make use of, I have no problem with such a purchase, however I do very much have to consider whether I need it...or just want it. In my own case, would be great to have the latest full frame Nikon D4. but at $6000+, do I really need it? No. Not by a long shot. I could easily justify my move to a used D7000 for $300 after I broke my D90 (once I did some research that is), but there's just no way at all I could rationalize $6000 for a camera body for what -I- do.

Again my own opinions...just a few things to consider.
I also own the 550D and figured a 70D would be a great upgrade but high-iso performance is what I'm missing most,
and Canon has been slacking for years in this department (especially in crop-sensor bodies).

The entry level Nikon D3300 (even the older D3200) blows it out of the water, even the 7D mark II.

6D on the other hand can go way higher then 550/70/7Dm2.
If possible, get models from both Canon and Nikon in your hands. Push the buttons, browse the menu interface, put a lens you may purchase on both and see how they feel to you.
If you browse around the dubya dubya dubya, you will likely find horror stories about both (all) camera makers customer service.
Consider the total cost of ownership and the total, overall benefits. For example...the 24-MP FX Nikons like the D600 (available used very cheaply), or the replacement D610, have exceptional image quality, and 24 million pixels on full frame Nikon is very much a 'sweet spot' between 36 MP and 16 or 18 MP APS-C options. In Nikon, their DX lenses and third party DX lenses can be used on full-frame cameras, not so with Canon.

A friend of mine recently bought a Canon 6D...I toyed with it and shot a few frames on Halloween night. I liked the way they have set up the menu options. What I thought weakest about it was its sluggish AF performance with the 70-200 f/4 L IS USM Canon lens indoors...I was not impressed with the AF capability of the camera with that lens indoors in marginal light; compared to the Nikons I am used to, the AF module in the 6D felt...weak for indoor use.

I dunno...there are plenty of cameras out there right now. Used d-slr bodies are a pretty good alternative, in my opinion. There are plenty of last-generation models being sold as refurbished models, as well as current-gen refurbs. The Canon 6D is a little over $1,000 in the US as a refurbished model.
I agree, if you have "reached your limits" then the Canon 6D
$959 (refurbished) could be the best option

But be aware, full frame lens will cost more $$$ !
Wow, thanks all for your great help, much appreciated. (As i expected this made it even harder but also more clear to me. ;) )

As adviced i have already set a date to try out a Nikon.

Currently on my todo list:
#1: Canon 70D vs Nikon D610
#2: Canon 6D vs Nikon D750

Winner #1 vs winner #2 results in my new camera

If anyone has more tips about 1 of these 4 camera's (or other tips), feel free to share them with me!

Cheers!!! Tim
Enjoy your new d750 :)

(I didn't mention that one cos I thought it was out of budget, but if you can afford that camera, it is xcellent)
I have no hands on experience with ANY of those specific models, so please take this with the proverbial pinch of salt, however as a matter of my own curiousity, I just did a bit of looking around (using the same sources I used to make my decision on my D7000 purchase) and this is what I'm seeing...

Right off the bat, to me it looks like Canon is really pushing the "bells and whistles". In the case of the 70D for example, "advantages" are being listed as the tilt/swivel touch screen (how does that make your pictures look better?), Wifi (ditto) and more kit lenses (debatable, particularly regarding "quality"). The Canon, compared with the Nikon D610 is listed as having a faster shutter ( 1/8000 vs 1/4000 sec) and a higher extended ISO, however the Nikon is listed as having a better effective ISO, larger sensor, more pixels, bigger pixels, better dynamic range, better color depth, etc.. In other words, the important issues regarding image quality all seem to weigh in favor of the Nikon.

Likewise, just looking at stats alone regarding the 6D vs the D750, the big thing Canon seems to have in it's favor is built in GPS (again, this makes your pictures better how? Doesn't my cell phone have that anyways??). The Nikon however is again coming up with higher resolution, better dynamic range, higher effective ISO, in this case, more AF points (not sure that's an advantage or not...depends on how you shoot), less shutter lag, etc...all the stuff that's important to shooting and image quality seems to suggest the Nikon is a better choice. In both cases, the only real advantage the Canons seem to offer (beyond bells and whistles) is simply that they're less expensive in either scenerio. In both of these comparative scenarios, the Nikon's seem to be the better cameras regarding image quality.

Now here's something really interesting - if you compare those two Nikons, interestingly enough, I'd actually choose the D610 over the D750. The D750 has more AF points (51 vs 39) and higher extended and effective ISO ranges, however considering they're both 24.3 mp, if it were me at least, I would seriously have to question whether that's really worth the extra $500 for the D750...kind of a hard call there considering the price.

Again I have no hands-on experience with any of these, so hopefully someone will come around and offer a more experienced opinion regarding comparisons, however based on specs and reviews ALONE, while this is just my own opinion, I think the Nikon D610 is probably the best choice all seems to be a good balance between image quality and low light performance vs. price. That said, I would also agree with JacaRanda in that if possible, try to get all these models in your hands and decide for yourself. It's quite true that ANY major manufacturer of ANYTHING is going to have a certain percentage of dis-satisfied customers (i.e. horror stories) and I will even admit to a certain amount of bias on my own part based on my own experiences, so yes, the absolute best way to decide would be to compare them in your own hands, side by side. In lieu of that, all the info I've provided here can easily be found with a simple Google search as well...anyone here, myself included is going to have our own opinions, but at the end of the day, you're the one who's going to be spending the money. Do your research and make it a choice you can live with.

(My vote still goes to Nikon :headbang:)
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I love my D750.

My main problem is that its "perfect". :allteeth: No matter how much money you would give me, right now I cant find a better camera for my needs out there.

My second problem with it (and any other full frame DSLR from Nikon, Canon, soon also Pentax) is that the AF points are very much in the center, while APS-C cameras can have them more spread out. That one has technical reasons.

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