Orquid "Phoenix"

Orquid "Phoenix"

by ceinmart

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I'm about to buy a camera but before you dismiss this question as argumentative read it first.

I used to take photos years ago on Canon EOS 500N (yes film camera) with default lens that came with it which I like at wide angles mostly, because going to 80mm colours were washed out etc. You know its problems. Then some years afterwards I used P&S Sony pocket camera.

But I've borrowed Nikon D80 few weeks ago and tested it with a Sigma 17-50/f2.8 lens. Actually I liked all those buttons it had left of LCD. Accessible, fast settings changes etc. Very nice camera that made me want to buy SLR again.

Anyway. I'm still leaning toward Canon. 60D to be exact. Why? Because I know Canon's line of lenses (even though it's not always easy to pick the correct one) and since I don't know anything about Nikkor lenses whatsoever. But the fact that Nikon D7000 is similarly priced to Canon's 60D it makes me wonder... Because I generally think that this particular camera is superior to 60D. I consider Nikon's D7000 more in line with Canon 7D than 60D. I know that 60D has swivel LCD which I actually missed when testing D80, because taking images of my dog required me to get really low on the ground. This feature alone would probably become very useful. But is not the main factor, because I probably won't shoot that much video. Actually my coming baby will be the main subject.

Anyway. I know this question can be argumentative so let me ask a question that will end up in votable answers so I'll be able to accept the best one.

Is there a sharpness difference when D7000 has 1.5 crop and canon 1.6 with different resolutions? Because full frame bodies tend to be sharper due to bigger pixels. Same can be assumed here or?

But the main thing is I need advice what features/things/facts should I be thinking of when considering either 60D or D7000. Which things would you be considering? They do have different resolution but both of them use considerably high one so it's already over the optimum margin on both. I haven't tested Canon 60D yet to see the user-friendlyness of its buttons and settings. So this is something I am interested in. So what advice can you give me when considering 60D and D7000 and what would your choice be today if you'd have to buy one of these?

Please avoid answers as because Nikon is the best. Try to provide factual data that can actually help me decide.

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I know you've put a lot of work into trying to write a question that won't get closed. But I have to agree with @labnut below. We really can't give good, helpful answers here. It's just not the kind of thing that works on this site. –  mattdm Apr 8 '11 at 10:43
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Part of the problem is that once one removes all argumentative aspects, the only question left is the camera specs, and it's unclear what exactly you'd like to know from here that isn't covered by just comparing feature lists. –  mattdm Apr 8 '11 at 10:49
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And, hopefully to be constructive and not just all negative on your post, I think the general question here photo.stackexchange.com/questions/175 might be helpful, and particularly the Mike Johnston article I link to in the comments there. (In short, I recognize in your question a pre-purchase paralysis I find myself often trapped in; the real answer is to buy the one you really, really want, and then not regret it.) –  mattdm Apr 8 '11 at 11:09
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5 Answers

up vote 7 down vote accepted

Put your hands on a 60D before you do anything else. Canon has some very nice lenses to be sure. So does Nikon, and there are some darned good third-party lenses that are available in both mounts. If you have no existing stock of lenses you'd like to use (if you're starting afresh) then you can find happiness in either mount. In practice, the D7000 performs better at very high ISO levels, but the 60D is arguably somewhat sharper at the low ISO end. Both, as you've stated, have an adequate number of pixels for most purposes. Back to the coin toss.

I went Nikon for one reason and one reason only -- I have a physical disability that makes the Canon's rear control wheel difficult to reach and manipulate. I noticed that in the early EOS film days, but then it was only a slight disagreement between my mental model of a good electronic control design and what Canon had implemented. In the digital era, the wheel seems to have dropped lower on the camera body (likely so a single wheel can be used both with the standard button set and the vertical controls, either in a grip or built into the EOS 1 series), and I can no longer force my thumb that low. In other words, it came down to a purely ergonomic choice for me. Price was the only real consideration when choosing between Nikon and Pentax (whose ergonomics also agree with my hands).

Let your fingers and thumbs do the walking and the talking -- there's not enough difference between them to let anything but comfort and ease of use guide your decision.

As an aside I'd much prefer to see a DSLR with the control layout of the Fujifilm Finepix X100, with a proper shutter speed dial and an aperture ring where the damned aperture ring belongs (even if it's a part of the camera face rather than the lens). Maybe that's just old-fogey talk, but I miss cameras that work like cameras.

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Lenses are actually the main factor why I'm still very much considering Canon. I know lots about Canon lenses but none of Nikon... There are resources on the web, but it's still not the same... –  Robert Koritnik Apr 8 '11 at 8:22
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You may want to go with what you know, then -- and since you've already got some EOS experience (albeit with film) you may find the ergonomics familiar and comfortable -- but do pick up a camera and don't buy based on paper specs or expectations. (A late-'70s Lamborghini may be a hell of a car, but if you're taller than five-ten, you'd have to learn to smile with your kneecaps in your ears.) –  user2719 Apr 8 '11 at 8:27
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IMO if you are making your first SLR purchase that the lenses are the thing to focus on. I consider the body to be almost disposable, it is replaced on an almost yearly basis. ISO performance, frames per second, sharpness of the sensor, etc... are very similar across Nikon and Canon, it is an arms race where either company may be in the lead at any given time. Within a year or two the other company will come out with a body that is better than the competitor's. The lenses I have cost more and bring more value than the body. Most important to your decision is; what do your friends shoot? –  Dave Nelson Apr 8 '11 at 19:32
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Robert, I really think this kind of question should not be asked here, for a number of reasons.

  • It is inevitably divisive as people rise to defend their tribal loyalties.
  • The question and replies don't add lasting value to this site. After all within two years time the replies are all irrelevant. The questions and their answers then become just noise in the system.
  • It lends itself to abuse as troll and astroturfers use it as an opportunity to do their destructive work.
  • you will get far better answers on one of the large forums like DPReview where they delight in answering this kind of question and happily engage in long, heated debates. So why waste your time here?
  • and finally you must bear in mind that every make has its ardent supporters. Why? Because the camera best suits their particular needs and circumstances. There is no best camera. There is though a camera that best suits your needs and circumstances, but only you accurately know your needs and circumstances. But we don't know and so can never accurately advise you. You must carefully research your needs and the cameras that seem to meet your needs, because you know your circumstances.

Disclaimer: I own neither Nikon or Canon equipment so don't have a horse in this race.

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Please go to the 2 links below for a full review on these two cameras, I suggest you also go and try them on your hand if you can so that you see how it feels, the moment I tried Canon models I did not like the feeling so I went towards Nikon, that I liked (my opinion though):

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/canoneos60D/

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/nikond7000/

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Here's the thing:

  1. Unless you're an amazing photographer, you won't be able to tell the difference.
  2. If you're looking for the largest variety of lenses, Canon wins. However, lenses are expensive, so its kinda like choose to go with Photoshop because of all it can do when in reality you'll only ever use 20% of them.
  3. As a 60D owner, one thing I don't like about my camera is that after 12 minutes of shooting video, it shuts down because the sensor overheats. This is a problem across all Canon DSLRs that shoot video. I don't know if it is with Nikon cameras, but if I were you I'd look into it.
  4. If you're going to shoot video, ask yourself what you'll be shooting. Capturing a little one playing and running about on a camera that does not have continuous autofocus is quite hard. I believe the Nikon does have continuous autofocus, but I'm not sure.
  5. If you're into HDR photography, a Nikon is better simply because you can perform exposure bracketing at up to 7 exposures. Canon limits the number of exposures to 3. Ofcourse, if you have a smart phone, you can get around that limitation by using it to control your camera.
  6. I bought a Canon 60D because I love the flip out LCD screen. Yes I've seen the youtube reviews that call it a gimmick, but it has allowed me to take some really nice shots and videos.
  7. Finally, you have the magic lantern third party firmware for recording video. I don't think this is available for Nikon cameras, though I could be wrong. It adds a lot of video features that are missing on the camera by default - like stereo level meters on the LCD when you're shooting video.

There are more reasons, but I hope these are enough to swing you in either direction.

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As for point #4, the continuous autofocus on the D7000 doesn't work too well. You can find some test videos on cameralabs.com . Not really a minus since the 60D doesn't have it, but not necessarily a full plus either. –  Perishable Dave Aug 11 '11 at 6:57
    
your reasons are not consistent: the number of shots in auto bracketing is irrelevant if compared to all the features a photogrpher needs, there's no evidence or common belief one brand has better weather sealing, the choice of lenses is so large with both makers there's no way of saying which one has more, ... –  MattiaG Aug 11 '11 at 11:45
    
@Mattia: If you're doing HDR, the number of shots in autobracketing are totally relevant. I stand corrected regarding weather sealing and have removed that point. Regarding lens variety, Canon DOES have a better lens collection than Nikon: radiantlite.com/2008/07/canon-versus-nikon-lenses.html, timothyarmes.com/blog/2010/09/…. I have also stated that either have so many lenses that they are likely to be enough, so I do not see why you have such a problem with the reasoning. –  Carl Aug 11 '11 at 23:48
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Yeah, Nikon is the best :)

For me the answer is straight forward. I would get the D7000 because I am used to how the Nikon buttons/settings work and because I have a few lenses that would work on the D7000.

Feature wise, for me the backup memory card option on the D7000 is a very good one to have.

Not sure if the camera make matters that much otherwise.

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This is exactly what I didn't want to hear. I said what would you choose if you haven't had any of these brands before. And you refer to Nikon because you know it through and through. And I don't think that camera make matters. I's just like to buy best for the amount of money at stake (very much related to lenses afterwards as well. It's never just body). –  Robert Koritnik Apr 8 '11 at 7:43
    
Look, I hope you hear something you want to hear. As far as I can see, it is very difficult to get a response from someone who takes a lot of pictures (not people who read extensively about makes and models of cameras) with a direct feature comparison between 2 makes and what makes one better than the other. Most people I know got started with one make, got used to it and stuck to it. In my opinion, if you were talking 2 models of the same make you may get a better response. –  Sujith Nair Apr 8 '11 at 7:56
    
I agree. I actually hope someone that uses Canon as well as Nikon will be able to provide some input. Maybe they're not a pro but know much about the technical side of it. They may work in a photo specialist store so they' know lots about different makes. –  Robert Koritnik Apr 8 '11 at 8:21
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