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Thread: Nikon D40 or D3000?

  1. #1

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    Nikon D40 or D3000?

    Hi everyone. I am currently using a compact camera, Sony DSC-W80. I am not that good at photography, but still learning and hope to do great with time. I so badly want to upgrade to a DSLR. These are the two models I have narrowed down to (budget constraint). I have attached an Excel file along, which gives a price comparison between prices in India and Canada. And there is a huge difference.

    I don't see any apparent difference between these two models. And also, which lens should I go for (from the list, in the file attached). Please help me. And also tell me if its worthwhile. (for me )

    Thanks.
    Attached Files Attached Files

  2. #2
    Amberglass's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon D40 or D3000?

    The D3000 is the newer replacement version of the D40. If you can, see if you can physically get your hands to hold the D40, because it's Nikon's smallest dslr body. It may not be comfortable for you to hold.

    Another option for those who are on a tight budget, and just learning about photography is buying your gear "second hand". You can actually get a used Nikon D200 (same mega pixels) for the same price as a new D3000. The D200 is a semi-pro body, much better build quality, faster 5 fps, and easier to grip with it's bigger body. Definitely a camera that will take you from beginner to semi-pro level (avid/advanced amateur); a camera that can grow with you.

    Mastering exposure, shutter speed, and depth of field is key in photography 101. I always recommend that beginners starts themselves off with a fast prime like a 50 1.8/1.4 or 35 1.4/2. You need the wider and faster aperture for low lighting and speed without flash. Kit lenses have apertures that are too small for low lighting (even if you crank up the ISOs) without the assistance of flash.

    If you happen to buy a used camera that has everything but the operations manual (and yes, you will need it); just go onto Nikon's official website to download it for free.

    One of the biggest advantages for you if you go with a D200 is that Nikon offers backward technology on their midrange cameras. Meaning you can buy older AF lenses for your camera and save.
    Last edited by Amberglass; 20th November 2009 at 03:05 PM.

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    Re: Nikon D40 or D3000?

    Thanks a lot, Amberglass. But its really difficult to find a second hand camera. I tried it, but could not successfully find one

    And would the small size be very uncomfortable, or it can be dealt with time? And I really doubt, after buying a camera, I would be buying a lens in near future. Not for a year at least.

    So D40 or D3000 are the options I have. Which of these is a better bet? Or any other model, within same budget, which is better than these two models?!

    Thanks.

  4. #4
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    Re: Nikon D40 or D3000?

    Since you're looking at Canada for prices, a good place to start looking for second hand gear in the States is www.Keh.com, www.bhphotovideo.com, and www.adorama.com. You can also look at some photography forums like www.nikongear.com or similar forums classifieds.
    But buyer's beware when it comes to buying gear without physically looking at them. At least with reputable shops (like those mentioned) will accept returns with no questions asked.

    Your choice is based on what's in your budget. Both bodies are very good for their class and the standard kit lens is pretty good. But as I have mentioned before with other beginners; start off with a fast prime so you can learn about proper exposure, depth of field, and shutter speeds first.

    Kit lenses have apertures that commonly too small for indoor or low lighting use without flash, and cranking up the ISO may not be enough (images will have noise/grain).

  5. #5

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    Re: Nikon D40 or D3000?

    Thanks, Amber, once again. I was checking the prices in the Canada just because I wanted an idea about the prices in other parts of the world. I have some relatives living there though. My cousin might get it for me from Qatar or Dubai. No idea what prices are like there. As I am not purchasing the camera, I can't bother someone by telling them to get me a second hand after checking its condition

    But I totally agree with your point and initially, even I started off with looking for a second hand camera, but no luck

  6. #6
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    Re: Nikon D40 or D3000?

    Well if it helps, the Canadian dollar and the USD are pretty close. The used section of the camera shops that I recommend are top notch. They've been around since the 1970's or as long as I've been shooting which is 25+ years.

    Just look at the rating system on the condition of the camera, they're pretty accurate enough. Just don't get UGG from KEH because it's basically for parts.

    Sahil, photography "is expensive" no matter what level you start at. Photography also takes a lot of time, patience, and practice. The camera doesn't matter, it's the person behind it that's matters the most important.

  7. #7

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    Re: Nikon D40 or D3000?

    Thanks again, Amber. I surely will go through the site, but it doesn't look feasible to get the camera from the USA or Canada.

    I totally agree it's the person behind the camera that matters and not the camera. But I feel so handicapped at times, when I want to take some good shot (Long exposure shots, to be more precise)

    If you can take out time and see a few of my favourite clicks, I would be obliged. Here is the link. You needn't be signed on to the facebook to have a look. Looking at these you can suggest me if I should stay on a compact camera a little longer or I am not very good behind the camera


    http://www.facebook.com/album.php?ai...7&l=0ebe4f5991

  8. #8
    Amberglass's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon D40 or D3000?

    I see a lot of motion blur in some of your images, fyi. The problem with point and shoots is that the shooter can become dependent on the lcd screen. The viewfinders are pretty much useless because they're so tiny (the bridge cameras are little bit better in comparison).

    You can significantly improve image sharpness by using a pocket tripod. They don't cost much and try to find one with a swivel head. Anything that firmly braces your camera will instantly give you better result.

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    Re: Nikon D40 or D3000?

    Hi Sahil: I was in the same position last summer as you are now. I was looking for a D40 because based on what I had read, it seemed like a good inexpensive entry level DSLR. When I went to purchase one, I was told (at 3 local stores) that it was not available - out of production. I looked around for a used one, but got impatient and ended up purchasing the D3000.

    I am very happy with it. I'm a rookie too so I can't compare it to anything else in the Digital area. What I do find very useful are all the help and info files that are built right into the camera. It has the users manual built right in, and it really is very helpful and easy to use.

    I can't advise you on lenses. I am looking for one myself, and hope to upgrade in the future. For now I'm quite happy with the kit lens. I don't think I can blame any of my bad photos on the lens. I need lots of practice and this lens will do fine until I can afford something different. There are many Nikon lenses available at all different price points.

    Good luck with your purchase. I looked at your pics, and you have quite a variety. You definitely have the photography bug, I hope you find what you are looking for and keep improving on your ideas. That's what I'm trying to do too.

    Wendy

  10. #10

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    Re: Nikon D40 or D3000?

    Thanks, Amber and Wendy, for taking out time to look at my pictures and giving me such useful advices. So upgrading to a base level DSLR won't be a mistake! I take many shots which don't come out well (because of a P&S ) I wanted to see how good compact cameras can be. IF I can afford to buy a new lens, which are generally more expensive than the cameras, I would want a macro lens. Can anyone please let me know the price of a D3000 with kit lens in the USA or Canada, or Gulf countries (Dubai or Qatar, preferably). Sorry, if I am asking for too much help

    You guys rock.

  11. #11

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    Re: Nikon D40 or D3000?

    Hi Sahil: I paid $600 Cdn for my D3000. They were listed for $650. I wouldn't worry too much about lenses right away. I think the kit lens will keep you happy while you save. I'm sure it's not the best lens in the world and you will want to upgrade, but if you're anything like me, the kit lens will keep you occupied for quite awhile. It's not even too bad for macros - not extreme, but I think you'll like it.

    Looking forward to seeing the results.

    Wendy

  12. #12

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    Re: Nikon D40 or D3000?

    Wow! That fits my budget. I read on Nikon's site its $550 CAD now. Not sure if thats inclusive of taxes. Thanks ScoutR. Yes, the kit lens would definitely keep me busy.
    Now I gotta see if someone close is coming from the western world. In India, it is for about $880 CAD. I can wait for a month or so to save those many bucks.

  13. #13

    Re: Nikon D40 or D3000?

    Quote Originally Posted by Amberglass View Post
    Mastering exposure, shutter speed, and depth of field is key in photography 101. I always recommend that beginners starts themselves off with a fast prime like a 50 1.8/1.4 or 35 1.4/2. You need the wider and faster aperture for low lighting and speed without flash. Kit lenses have apertures that are too small for low lighting (even if you crank up the ISOs) without the assistance of flash.

    If you happen to buy a used camera that has everything but the operations manual (and yes, you will need it); just go onto Nikon's official website to download it for free.

    One of the biggest advantages for you if you go with a D200 is that Nikon offers backward technology on their midrange cameras. Meaning you can buy older AF lenses for your camera and save.
    Not to forget faster and perhaps more accurate autofocus in low light conditions.

    If you do buy a nikon SLR, I suggest getting one of Thom Hogan's complete guide book. Not that cheap but I think it's worth the money. Unfortunately, he has not written one for the D3000 or D5000 as of now. I have not gotten one myself but I am considering buying it in the near future.

    Do read up some of his articles too. I strongly recommend these.

    Tip of the iceberg- factor in the cost of tripods, lens, filters, extra battery, memory cards, flashes, ring flashes, diffuses, books, workshops, traveling cost etc.

    Getting the pixels right (shot discipline)- get technically good photographs.
    My quick and dirty rule for better images has been and continues to be:



    • Get the best support you can and learn how to use it. Good support reveals how good your lenses are.
    • Get the best lenses you can and learn how to use them. Good lenses reveal how good your sensor and post processing are.
    • Get training. Learning proper shot setup, shot discipline, workflow, and post processing from the pros helps you maximize your pixels.
    • After you've done those three things and are still not getting the quality you want should you look at whether you need to upgrade your camera. If you do this last thing first, you're going to work this list backwards and take a lot of less-than-satisfactory pictures while you do. Moreover, when you work the list backwards, you often find that you have to go back a step when one of the upper items reveals a flaw you hadn't noticed in the lower ones. Save time and money by working the list forward.
    More shot discipline
    Recommended books




  14. #14

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    Re: Nikon D40 or D3000?

    DAMN! I am so so so very sorry. Its not D40 but D60. I'll see if I can change it. And thanks, Blazing fire. Those links are amazing and really worthwhile. I am getting more and more confused.

  15. #15

    Re: Nikon D40 or D3000?

    No need to appologise, and you're welcome. I'm glad you found those links interesting and informative.

    Please correct me if I'm wrong!

    D60 is a slightly improved version of d40x; the D60 uses the same sensor as the D40x. Frankly, there are very little differences between the d40, d40x and d60 except for the mp and some features. For instance, the D60 has a sensor cleaning mechanism while the D40 and D40x does not.

    From kenrockwell (not the best source but I think he sums up the differences pretty well).

    The D60 is actually a D40 body with a few more card-clogging pixels, a VR lens and adaptive dynamic range, but a slower maximum shutter speed with flash.

    ...

    The only significant feature in the D60 over the D40x and D40 is adaptive dynamic range. The D60 does not have any of the other next-generation functionality of the D3 and D300.
    As I'm not knowledgeable about the D3000, I will not comment on whether you should go with the D60 or D3000.

    Hmm... why isn't the hyperlink in the quote underlined?

  16. #16
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon D40 or D3000?

    Quote Originally Posted by Blazing fire View Post
    Hmm... why isn't the hyperlink in the quote underlined?
    I think it's a "feature" of the bulletin board software, I have noticed it before

    Not a huge biggy, but it would be nice if it were consistent, I agree.

    Cheers,

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