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Photography people, where do I find information about digital SLR cameras


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Is there a good website to explain basic things about digital SLR's?

 

I have narrowed it down to a few. Or is there anyone who would be nice enough to compare two cameras and explain is very little words which is better or the big difference? They are the same manufacturer just different models and I want to know if one is significantly better than the other.

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Yes thanks. I am going with COstco for sure because they have such a good guarantee and return policy if something goes wrong:

 

Nikon 1

 

Nikon 2

 

There are many others on there I realize, but going in to the thousands of dollars is something I am trying to avoid. Though such a big purchase I'd rather spend enough to get the best without going over board. I don't know what you are getting for the $150 more in the first one. I'm totally new at this and will definitely be involved in some sort of class to learn the basics. For now I just need to know what to buy. I was looking at Nikon just because it seems to get consistently high reviews.

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I can probably help a little. I went through this process last Christmas. I went with a Nikon D5100 and I LOVE it. It's amazing. The reviews on B and H photo and the ilovephotography website would be helpful too!

 

OK the 5100 is one step up in cost from the first one I posted. I don't understand the differences because that one has less pixels than the cheaper one? :confused:

 

I am challenged LOL

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http://www.dpreview.com/

 

and I'll be the dissenter. The 5100 has the same sensor as the D7000, so if you can swing it, get that one.

 

Also, if I were buying new for the first time and didn't already have a flash and an assortment of lenses, I'd give serious consideration to the new mirrorless cameras. 10 frames per second and the photo quality is really very good. They are compact, but they are not point and shoot cameras. Even some pros (as in get paid and travel the world) are switching.

Edited by darlasowders
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I'm not sure if you have a National Camera Exchange in your area, but they have used cameras you can take a look at, hold them, see how they feel. They also have classes. You can still purchase through Costco, but I've heard they are -very- helpful when trying to buy your first DSLR.

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This website helped me out a lot.

 

First, it helped me decide (another website did too, but can't remember that one) between a Cannon and a Nikon.

 

Second, it helped be decide between the different models.

 

I ended up going with a D3200 rather than the D5100.

 

What is the difference between those two? Only thing I can tell is the more expensive one has a lower pixel.

 

I am not fond of DPReview or Ken Rockwell. I found Steve's Digicams to be the friendliest camera forum on the web.

 

If I had it to do over, I would choose an EVIL instead of the dSLR I have now. It would be the halfway between not enough camera and too much camera.

 

 

What is an EVIL?

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EVIL stands for Electronic Viewfinder Interchangeable Lens. They have camera body sizes similar to a compact point and shoot and utilize a familiar electronic viewfinder system, but they have interchangeable lens systems like you would find in SLR cameras.

 

I have not heard of those. Thank you, I will look at these too.

 

Also,

 

https://www.youtube.com/user/DigitalRevCom?feature=watch

 

There are over 400 videos. Have fun. ;)

 

Oh boy :lol::lol:

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I currently have a 40D, but am drooling over the Mark II/Mark III. My 40D is sufficient, but the low light capabilities of the Mark II/Mark III make me so envious I can't even put it into words! Anything above ISO 800 on my 40D is noisy and yucky......the Mark series cameras can do AMAZING things even as high as ISO 3200 (my 40D doesn't even go that high).

 

That being said, there is absolutely nothing wrong with Nikons.....back when I was first shopping, all the experienced photographers told me to just go play with both and that one would feel right. For me, that was the Canon.

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After a lot of research, my 14yo decided to buy the 5100. She had been looking at the 3200 and decided against it because she specifically wanted the viewfinder that could swing out. She handled several Nikons and spent a long time talking with a neighbor who has the 3200 and showed her all the features. For what my dd wanted to do, the neighbor said the 5100 was better. My dd ordered her camera here:

http://www.cameta.com/Nikon-D5100-Digital-SLR-Camera-18-55mm-G-VR-DX-AF-S-Zoom-Lens-Factory-Demo-62311.cfm

 

She just ordered it today, so we don't have any actual experience dealing with cameta yet, but the reviews looked good.

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One of the differences that I remember is that the screen on the D5100 swings out whereas on the D3200 it's stationary. There are other differences, but I don't remember them. The website that I linked does a good job at explaining the differences.

 

I bought my D3200 in August and it was on sale, so that had a factor in my decision as well between the two. It also meets my requirements, so I didn't need to pay more money for features that I don't need (at least at the moment!).

 

The d5100 has the same DX format sensor as the D7000. This is a big upgrade. Never mind megapixels. I have an entry level 6 mp dslr that makes gorgeous prints (in addition to my d7000).

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The d5100 has the same DX format sensor as the D7000. This is a big upgrade. Never mind megapixels. I have an entry level 6 mp dslr that makes gorgeous prints (in addition to my d7000).

 

I'm trying to figure out what these words mean LOL.

 

DH was looking at them and said something about a fast processor.

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I'm trying to figure out what these words mean LOL.

 

DH was looking at them and said something about a fast processor.

 

Yes. Speed is THE reason I bought my first dslr. Kinda irritating to push the shutter release and have your subject leave the room before the shutter even opens. Any dslr will be faster than your typical point and shoot. My D40 will shot about 2.5 frames per second, and it was entry level over three years ago. My D7000 shoots up to six frames per second. I believe the 5100 comes close.

 

I don't know if the link will work or not, but this was one of several frames shot in continuous high speed mode:

 

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=450466731642130&set=pb.100000364207096.-2207520000.1352170228&type=3&theater

 

As long as you're learning photography terms, ISO is pretty important. It refers to the sensitivity (what used to be film speed) and being able to get a higher ISO number without noise (graininess) is a very nice feature.

Edited by darlasowders
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Right now you can get a refurb or 9+ (like new) D7000 body only at B&H for $800. http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/used/735002/Nikon_25468_D7000_DSLR_Camera_Body.html The D7000 is what I've been shooting for a year. Before that I shot a d50 for years and years on auto. My dh gave me the D7000 for Christmas last year, and I took a number of classes on Clickinmoms. My advice is to buy *up* from what you're thinking, because if you actually intend to learn to shoot manual you'll use it.

 

If the D5100 has the same sensor as the D7000, yes it should kick butt. From the D7000, the only step up is full frame. There's such a revolution going on right now, with the cost of ff dropping dramatically and these new mirrorless kinds and whatnot. The review I read on one of the mirrorless was that it wasn't quite there. I really don't know. I'm sure one day it will be there.

 

The 18-55 kit lens is just ho hum. It's a variable aperture, and if you're going to learn to shoot manual and not just whiz bang auto, I wouldn't bother. Instead get the camera *body only* (yes they sell them this way, look at that link) and get a 35mm lens. Nikon's 35mm http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/606792-USA/Nikon_2183_AF_S_Nikkor_35mm_f_1_8G.html is running $200 right now on B&H. Solid lens you can do a lot with. It's wide enough your pics in your house will look good and outdoor shots too.

 

I bought my camera through B&H and had a good experience. As I recall, my D7000 was in fact a refurb, so I feel confident recommending it to you as a way to get into a better camera for the same-ish money. B&H's return policy is very generous (use it for less than 250 shots and return), so it's a good way to get your hands on the camera and decide for yourself. You might even order the D5100 *and* the D7000, planning to return one or the other. Seriously, when I made my choice, I ordered several cameras and multiple lenses, wanting to try everything out. I was freaking out over all the money sitting on the bed as I tried them! :lol: B&H was awesome for that. Get it all, try them, send back what you don't want. They were fabulous to deal with.

 

I like Canon, but having been around the block a bit (taking numerous classes at Clickinmoms), my two cents is that in anything canon below the new 5dmiii, Nikon's sensor is more accurate. The white balance is just better, straight out of the box, with nikon. It's really a technical marvel. I think they fixed that in the new canon, and I could probably go either way (canon or nikon) if someone dropped $3K in my lap to get one. (In fact, depending on the day of the week I WOULD go canon for ff, hehe.) But the 7D is awesome too. It just wasn't worth the extra *bulk* to me to carry around a camera that much bigger and not get ff. That's actually why I went with the D7000, because it was slightly more diminuitive.

 

And actually, that brings up the best advice. At some point, stop reading reviews and just buy the one that feels good in your hand. They're actually all good. You're not choosing between lemons. As long as the ISO is there, you could pick up any of those cameras and make great shots and be happy. And if you decide against the D7000, then look at ISO. That's what you're going to be crying over when you sit in your house trying to take pictures. You want all the ISO you can afford. And a BIG memory card.

 

Enjoy your new camera! :D

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Right now you can get a refurb or 9+ (like new) D7000 body only at B&H for $800. http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/used/735002/Nikon_25468_D7000_DSLR_Camera_Body.html The D7000 is what I've been shooting for a year. Before that I shot a d50 for years and years on auto. My dh gave me the D7000 for Christmas last year, and I took a number of classes on Clickinmoms. My advice is to buy *up* from what you're thinking, because if you actually intend to learn to shoot manual you'll use it.

 

If the D5100 has the same sensor as the D7000, yes it should kick butt. From the D7000, the only step up is full frame. There's such a revolution going on right now, with the cost of ff dropping dramatically and these new mirrorless kinds and whatnot. The review I read on one of the mirrorless was that it wasn't quite there. I really don't know. I'm sure one day it will be there.

 

The 18-55 kit lens is just ho hum. It's a variable aperture, and if you're going to learn to shoot manual and not just whiz bang auto, I wouldn't bother. Instead get the camera *body only* (yes they sell them this way, look at that link) and get a 35mm lens. Nikon's 35mm http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/606792-USA/Nikon_2183_AF_S_Nikkor_35mm_f_1_8G.html is running $200 right now on B&H. Solid lens you can do a lot with. It's wide enough your pics in your house will look good and outdoor shots too.

 

I bought my camera through B&H and had a good experience. As I recall, my D7000 was in fact a refurb, so I feel confident recommending it to you as a way to get into a better camera for the same-ish money. B&H's return policy is very generous (use it for less than 250 shots and return), so it's a good way to get your hands on the camera and decide for yourself. You might even order the D5100 *and* the D7000, planning to return one or the other. Seriously, when I made my choice, I ordered several cameras and multiple lenses, wanting to try everything out. I was freaking out over all the money sitting on the bed as I tried them! :lol: B&H was awesome for that. Get it all, try them, send back what you don't want. They were fabulous to deal with.

 

I like Canon, but having been around the block a bit (taking numerous classes at Clickinmoms), my two cents is that in anything canon below the new 5dmiii, Nikon's sensor is more accurate. The white balance is just better, straight out of the box, with nikon. It's really a technical marvel. I think they fixed that in the new canon, and I could probably go either way (canon or nikon) if someone dropped $3K in my lap to get one. (In fact, depending on the day of the week I WOULD go canon for ff, hehe.) But the 7D is awesome too. It just wasn't worth the extra *bulk* to me to carry around a camera that much bigger and not get ff. That's actually why I went with the D7000, because it was slightly more diminuitive.

 

And actually, that brings up the best advice. At some point, stop reading reviews and just buy the one that feels good in your hand. They're actually all good. You're not choosing between lemons. As long as the ISO is there, you could pick up any of those cameras and make great shots and be happy. And if you decide against the D7000, then look at ISO. That's what you're going to be crying over when you sit in your house trying to take pictures. You want all the ISO you can afford. And a BIG memory card.

 

Enjoy your new camera! :D

 

OOoooo I have my work cut out for me. Thank you for all of this. So ISO is where it's at. Yes I will definitely need something to take pictures IN my house. Especially since I quilt and the photos I take now are AWFUL.

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We just bought the Nikon 5100 last week. We went to Best Buy and there was a guy there who knew all about cameras and was into photography. Our question was between the Nikon 5100 and the Canon T3i. He explained why the Nikon was better, and that the 5100 was better than the 3200, but I don't remember anything about why except that the 3200 was more expensive but the 5100 was a better buy.

 

We got a 200 mm lens with it and a memory card and it was $815, including tax. Pretty good deal, and we can go back and take a class where he teaches us how to use all the different settings.

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We just bought the Nikon 5100 last week. We went to Best Buy and there was a guy there who knew all about cameras and was into photography. Our question was between the Nikon 5100 and the Canon T3i. He explained why the Nikon was better, and that the 5100 was better than the 3200, but I don't remember anything about why except that the 3200 was more expensive but the 5100 was a better buy.

 

We got a 200 mm lens with it and a memory card and it was $815, including tax. Pretty good deal, and we can go back and take a class where he teaches us how to use all the different settings.

 

200mm lens? Do you mean the 55-200 zoom? How is that for taking pics of anything near you? I would think you'd be backing up a lot, but it would be very doable if you did mostly outdoor photography.

 

With a 200mm prime (no zooming in and out), you'd have to be 50' away from anything. And then you'd get a closeup.

 

I have the 18-55 (I leave it on my D40 for my kids to learn with.)

a 55-300 mm zoom and the 18-105 kit lens which I use for general photo taking pretty much anywhere and the 35mm prime Elizabeth mentioned for portraits and low light. I love this lens, but I'm glad it's not the only one I have. I'm also glad it was not my first lens. It has a bit more of a learning curve and as a newbie, I would have found that discouraging. Here is a good article about beginners and using primes (lenses like the 35mm with a fixed length):

http://www.gdanmitchell.com/2012/08/21/photographic-myths-and-platitudes-primes-make-you-a-better-photographer (He is one of my G+ photographers I have circled. He's a pro and talks to people about photography--not just other photographers.)

 

 

If I have to pick ONE lens to start with, it would be the 18-105 zoom with plans to get either the 35mm or 50mm in the near future. If you are a facebook friend of mine, look at my albums. All of my fair and parade pics were taken with the 18-105 lens. In fact, much of what was taken since early August was. It's just always on the camera.

 

There is a reason why Nikon (and Canon) packages a boring lens like this with their cameras. It's pretty fast and accurate and works for a wide range of situations. I can get my 18-55 and 18-105 lenses to focus on an object only 12" away or clear across the yard.

 

If it matters, the $120 50mm prime has an aperture ring. This is a good choice for shooting video as on the d7000, you cannot change the aperture in live view. This nifty little cheap lens would make shooting video in varied light conditions much more hassle free.

 

Speaking of light, I absolutely agree to get as much ISO as you can afford. However, do keep in mind that quilts and such do not move, so a tripod and a longer shutter speed will get you decent indoor pics of them even with many point and shoot cameras if you know how to go into the settings and do this. Reading a camera's manual makes you a better photographer today. Download the pdf version and it's searchable. You can find them even for older cameras.

 

Oh and on a related note, keep your RAW images. I got a new laptop this week, and I have discovered my images had more color intensity than I thought. Holy Dr. Seuss Batman! Even the ones taken in low light. I am glad I can edit them again (or un-edit as the case may be! lol!)

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If I have to pick ONE lens to start with, it would be the 18-105 zoom with plans to get either the 35mm or 50mm in the near future.

...

Speaking of light, I absolutely agree to get as much ISO as you can afford. However, do keep in mind that quilts and such do not move, so a tripod and a longer shutter speed will get you decent indoor pics of them even with many point and shoot cameras if you know how to go into the settings and do this.

..

Oh and on a related note, keep your RAW images. I got a new laptop this week, and I have discovered my images had more color intensity than I thought. Holy Dr. Seuss Batman! Even the ones taken in low light. I am glad I can edit them again (or un-edit as the case may be! lol!)

 

I've never used the 18-105. It's a fixed ap, right? Oops, just checked on B&H and it's not. I've toyed around with the idea of a zoom lens, but I always have more ideas than I have money. The one I have lusted after is the 24-70, and it's out of my price range at the moment. :D

 

And yes, RAW is the next step for you (Darla)! Jpegs are throwing half your color away. Jared Platt did a class on Creative Live that was *phenomenal*. I've watched a lot of classes. I use LR (Lightroom). Lynda.com has good classes. Love Chris Orwig. What Jared Platt did especially well was to hammer in that you should never do anything twice. So he says import your RAWs, figure out what changes you consistently make on them, and then set that up as an import preset. That's actually been my game for the last bit. I shot RAW for months and months and was editing pics one by one, horrible. So for the last while I've been shooting jpeg + RAW, and my plan (which I actually got up the spunk to do and hope to start today!) is to compare them in LR and see what I can make faster.

 

I got the Jared Platt presets when he had them 50% off during the class, and they're marvelous. He's the only one I've seen (not that I've looked terribly hard) who sells his presets logically. So many just have this whole package deal, affecting all aspects of your image to create a "look". His presets are all components, so you can mix and match them together. Much better.

 

Homeschoolers get the education discount with adobe btw. So you can get Lightroom, Photoshop, whatever, with the educator discount.

 

And for the op, Clickinmoms has great classes on all that. If it's greek to you, head on over! There are other ways to learn, but the classes and feedback make it a lot of fun. :)

Edited by OhElizabeth
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http://www.dpreview.com/

 

and I'll be the dissenter. The 5100 has the same sensor as the D7000, so if you can swing it, get that one.

 

Also, if I were buying new for the first time and didn't already have a flash and an assortment of lenses, I'd give serious consideration to the new mirrorless cameras. 10 frames per second and the photo quality is really very good. They are compact, but they are not point and shoot cameras. Even some pros (as in get paid and travel the world) are switching.

 

Yes I went with the D5100 for the light sensor. The difference is huge. I want to upgrade to something similar to the D7000 eventually but it wasn't in my budget. I LOOOOOOOOVE my D5100. I've been extremely happy with it!

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I need to read through this whole thread but I'd love suggestions on a good zoom lens. I have the Nikon D5100 and the 35 and 50mm lenses. Love those but I do need a zoom lens. I don't want to go crazy pricewise though. I need something $500 or less.

 

What other toys are fun? I have a speed flash. I'm looking into taking more classes too. Thanks for suggestions!

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I've never used the 18-105. It's a fixed ap, right? Oops, just checked on B&H and it's not. I've toyed around with the idea of a zoom lens, but I always have more ideas than I have money. The one I have lusted after is the 24-70, and it's out of my price range at the moment. :D

 

And yes, RAW is the next step for you (Darla)! Jpegs are throwing half your color away. Jared Platt did a class on Creative Live that was *phenomenal*. I've watched a lot of classes. I use LR (Lightroom). Lynda.com has good classes. Love Chris Orwig. What Jared Platt did especially well was to hammer in that you should never do anything twice. So he says import your RAWs, figure out what changes you consistently make on them, and then set that up as an import preset. That's actually been my game for the last bit. I shot RAW for months and months and was editing pics one by one, horrible. So for the last while I've been shooting jpeg + RAW, and my plan (which I actually got up the spunk to do and hope to start today!) is to compare them in LR and see what I can make faster.

 

I got the Jared Platt presets when he had them 50% off during the class, and they're marvelous. He's the only one I've seen (not that I've looked terribly hard) who sells his presets logically. So many just have this whole package deal, affecting all aspects of your image to create a "look". His presets are all components, so you can mix and match them together. Much better.

 

Homeschoolers get the education discount with adobe btw. So you can get Lightroom, Photoshop, whatever, with the educator discount.

 

And for the op, Clickinmoms has great classes on all that. If it's greek to you, head on over! There are other ways to learn, but the classes and feedback make it a lot of fun. :)

 

I do have Lightroom (Got it for @ $60 just this summer.), and I've been shooting RAW. I am grateful for that now that I can see what my pics REALLY look like on a better monitor. Some of the ones I edited are a bit overdone with color tweaking. I'm just glad that I shoot RAW and that I still have the original files. Sorry if that was unclear.

 

Going to check out Jared Platt's presets...

 

Does it slow it down much to shoot RAW + JPEG? I haven't tried it.

 

Photoshop with the educator's discount will have to wait until next year. Unless I can have my college student get it. Hmm...

 

Oh, and did you notice The Teaching Company has a photography course now? I bought it to view with my kids, and it came yesterday.

 

I also have a 10 hr. video instruction course for Lightroom. That should keep me busy for a while. :tongue_smilie::tongue_smilie:

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You gals are awesome. I'm going in to Costco tomorrow when I am by myself for a while to look at them. I know they have all of these Nikons in the warehouse.

 

So the 5100 model comes with a n 18-55 mm lens and a 55-300mm lens

 

Would that be all I need? It comes as a bundle and I do want to get it from Costco. I've been bit by purchasing large things elsewhere and I just have piece of mind knowing they have great service and returns should something go wrong.

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You gals are awesome. I'm going in to Costco tomorrow when I am by myself for a while to look at them. I know they have all of these Nikons in the warehouse.

 

So the 5100 model comes with a n 18-55 mm lens and a 55-300mm lens

 

Would that be all I need? It comes as a bundle and I do want to get it from Costco. I've been bit by purchasing large things elsewhere and I just have piece of mind knowing they have great service and returns should something go wrong.

 

Costco is a safe place to buy. I bought my 5100 at Best Buy but Costco probably had a better retun policy. I think that kit sounds awesome. I'd add a 35mm or 50mm lens eventually. I love mine!

 

Oh I use Lightroom too. It's very user friendly!

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Ok ONE more question. Would one of you experienced gals be willing to tell me the big difference between the 3200 and the 5100? They both come with the same lenses. But as far as performance? I am reading the descriptions and they seem so similar. The 5100 is $150 more, but what is it about the 5100 that is similar to the 7000, that the 3200 does NOT have?

 

here they are at Costco

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I can't answer your last question, about comparing the 3200 and 5100 but I am THRILLED with my D5100. The ISO is great. I can take pictures in low light and push up my ISO without too much noise.

 

And the swivel screen has come in handy a number of times. When I want to take a closeup picture of myself, I pop it on the tripod, swivel the screen around, put the focus to manual and pose away. (Click here for a picture of myself done this way. Note: the colors were desaturated to seem more 70's.)

 

Or if I want to take a picture close to the ground, or high above my head, I can hold the camera low or high without having to crouch or jump to see through the viewfinder. I just swivel out the screen instead. (Click here to see a picture taken from the ground, to make the subject seem like a giant--scroll down the link for the giant picture. The camera was lying on the ground.)

Edited by Garga
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Ok ONE more question. Would one of you experienced gals be willing to tell me the big difference between the 3200 and the 5100? They both come with the same lenses. But as far as performance? I am reading the descriptions and they seem so similar. The 5100 is $150 more, but what is it about the 5100 that is similar to the 7000, that the 3200 does NOT have?

 

here they are at Costco

 

From what the reviews are saying, the d5100 has the *sensor* from the d7000. That plus the swivel screen that you're getting with the d5100 is AWESOME. I would go with that in a heartbeat. Don't even blink, just get it! You're going to be exquisitely happy. :D

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From what the reviews are saying, the d5100 has the *sensor* from the d7000. That plus the swivel screen that you're getting with the d5100 is AWESOME. I would go with that in a heartbeat. Don't even blink, just get it! You're going to be exquisitely happy. :D

 

And the sensor is your camera's "film". Unlike film though, you get whatever one it comes with, and can't switch to a brand that gives you better colors, is more sensitive etc.

 

The D7000 is the highest model non-pro camera Nikon makes. I only wish it had the swivel screen. That sure would be nice.

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We have Mark III's, and they are incredible. We also have a Mark II, which my dh says is not worth the extra cost between the original 5D. He always says that it is more important to buy great lenses. He recently advised my mom to get a 40D with better lenses, rather than the 5D with cheaper lenses.

 

Personally, for shooting my own kids, I use the 50 and 135. If I could only have one, I would choose the 50, I prefer prime lenses to zoom, but zoom gives you more flexibility if you don't want to switch lenses frequently. We have a 70-200 that practically breaks my wrist every time I use it, and another zoom lens, that only goes down to 4.0 (maybe a 40-70? I can't remember). It works with the mark III because the ISO can go so high, but I don't know how it would work with another camera.

 

When I first switched to DSLR, the best thing I did was read the manual and practice, practice, practice. I would shoot my kids all day long, look at the results and figure out what I did right and wrong.

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And the sensor is your camera's "film". Unlike film though, you get whatever one it comes with, and can't switch to a brand that gives you better colors, is more sensitive etc.

 

The D7000 is the highest model non-pro camera Nikon makes. I only wish it had the swivel screen. That sure would be nice.

 

 

I've looked at so many stinking reviews for the both. They are saying that they are *almost* identical. That the 5100 has a swivel pull out screen and ever so slight better something I don'to remember but not much to make a difference.

 

I guess the 3200 model is knew. Geesh. It's only $150 difference but then they are going to come out with something ELSE knew and better.

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From what the reviews are saying, the d5100 has the *sensor* from the d7000. That plus the swivel screen that you're getting with the d5100 is AWESOME. I would go with that in a heartbeat. Don't even blink, just get it! You're going to be exquisitely happy. :D

 

See I was trying to figure out exactly what difference in the two model's sensor. It looks to be the same? :confused:

 

That is what confuses me. I don't really know if I care about a swivel screen. Maybe it's a good thing.

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I can't answer your last question, about comparing the 3200 and 5100 but I am THRILLED with my D5100. The ISO is great. I can take pictures in low light and push up my ISO without too much noise.

 

And the swivel screen has come in handy a number of times. When I want to take a closeup picture of myself, I pop it on the tripod, swivel the screen around, put the focus to manual and pose away. (Click here for a picture of myself done this way. Note: the colors were desaturated to seem more 70's.)

 

Or if I want to take a picture close to the ground, or high above my head, I can hold the camera low or high without having to crouch or jump to see through the viewfinder. I just swivel out the screen instead. (Click here to see a picture taken from the ground, to make the subject seem like a giant--scroll down the link for the giant picture. The camera was lying on the ground.)

 

ooooh ok this might sell me on the swivel screen. I photo quilts and it is SO hard to get them hanging without standing on a ladder. I'm short!

 

Thanks everyone for the help. I really appreciate it. I've never owned a "good" camera. Just the best point and shoot we could find so this is all knew.

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See I was trying to figure out exactly what difference in the two model's sensor. It looks to be the same? :confused:

 

That is what confuses me. I don't really know if I care about a swivel screen. Maybe it's a good thing.

 

Here is a review comparing the two specifically point by point:

 

http://www.digitalrev.com/article/nikon-d3200-vs-nikon-d5100/MjExMzkzMTU_A

 

And I will admit that initially I thought you were talking about a different camera - the d3100. It looks like you could flip a coin and pick one and not go wrong. Just don't let megapixels be your deciding factor. There are plenty of pros out there shooting with 10 and 12 mp cameras right now.

Edited by darlasowders
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I actually bought the 3200 and went back and exchanged it for the 5100. I wanted the better light sensor and I do love the swivel screen. I know $150 seems like a lot but I've found that I've never regretted trading "up" when it comes to photography equipment. Google photography classes in your area after you get the camera. I paid about $65 for a 4 hour "How does this camera work?" class last January and it was invaluable!!

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I actually bought the 3200 and went back and exchanged it for the 5100. I wanted the better light sensor and I do love the swivel screen. I know $150 seems like a lot but I've found that I've never regretted trading "up" when it comes to photography equipment. Google photography classes in your area after you get the camera. I paid about $65 for a 4 hour "How does this camera work?" class last January and it was invaluable!!

 

THanks. I'll definitely need a class LOL.

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We have Mark III's, and they are incredible. We also have a Mark II, which my dh says is not worth the extra cost between the original 5D. He always says that it is more important to buy great lenses. He recently advised my mom to get a 40D with better lenses, rather than the 5D with cheaper lenses.

 

Personally, for shooting my own kids, I use the 50 and 135. If I could only have one, I would choose the 50, I prefer prime lenses to zoom, but zoom gives you more flexibility if you don't want to switch lenses frequently. We have a 70-200 that practically breaks my wrist every time I use it, and another zoom lens, that only goes down to 4.0 (maybe a 40-70? I can't remember). It works with the mark III because the ISO can go so high, but I don't know how it would work with another camera.

 

When I first switched to DSLR, the best thing I did was read the manual and practice, practice, practice. I would shoot my kids all day long, look at the results and figure out what I did right and wrong.

 

If you want a little fun, notice both David DuChemin on his blog http://davidduchemin.com/category/gear/ and Nevada Wier http://nevadawier.wordpress.com/category/photography-equiment/ mention liking their 16-35 on full frame. Du Chemin is shooting nikon and Wier Canon.

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