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Thread: 500D, D90 or A700

  1. #1

    Default 500D, D90 or A700

    Hi guys,

    Newbie here. Have been reading too much on internet and forums about all the relevant DSLR I have been eyeing on and these 3 models.

    I am seriously torn between these. Tried them out at shops, read reviews, seen images taken from these and also considered the accessories and lenses they come with or going to buy with...

    I personally shoot photos of my son at home which is quite dark, so I supposed high ISO performance is key for me. Other than that, sometimes out in the parks, zoo, swimming pools outings with my son and family is another consideration.

    I have known that we need low light prime lenses to capture good images in low light situation and prime is almost like a must-buy after the camera.

    Also, it will be good with video capability, though I know the quality and usability now sucks big time.

    500D:
    - Light and small
    - Good ISO performance
    - Liveview
    - Video
    - Not good AF in liveview
    - Not the biggest OVF of the 3 (0.87x)
    - Smallest grip
    - Build quality not the best here
    - Kit lens not good?
    - If mount with Heavy lens like Tamron 17-50, will it be awkward to hold?
    - Limited prime lenses 20-35mm? (cos I may find 50mm too tight at home)

    D90:
    - Good build quality and handling
    - Best ISO performance here
    - Liveview
    - Video (but without AF)
    - Slow AF in liveview
    - Biggest OVF here (0.94x)
    - Kit lens ok?
    - Is the new 35mm f1.8 good to buy? Seems many people selling already
    - Heavy?

    A700:
    - Best build quality here
    - Good performance
    - OK OVF (0.9x)
    - No so good ISO performance as compared to the other 2
    - No Liveview
    - No video
    - Friends got some Minolta lenses to share
    - Can get CZ1680
    - Limited lens options?
    - Heavy and big?
    - Seems new bodies like A500/550 already in rumour with video and Liveview, so is it ok to get this model?

    So guys, I know many will blast me for asking repeated questions here, but seriously, I have not seen enough comments or direct comparison for me to decide on, though I prefer the feel and handling of D90 and A700. But I would want to be on the safe side so as to be able to capture more beautiful images of my family while not overspending too much in future.

    Is 2 lenses like Tamron 17-50 and one wide prime (20-35mm) enough setup to start with?

    Please, appreciate any advice...

  2. #2

    Default Re: 500D, D90 or A700

    I voted Nikon D90. Very nice camera. I thinking to get over this weekend.

  3. #3

    Default Re: 500D, D90 or A700

    Among the 3, A700 easily. A700 is comparable to 40D, a class above the 500D / D90.

  4. #4
    Moderator Octarine's Avatar
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    Default Re: 500D, D90 or A700

    Get a flash for indoor shots, together with diffuser. Balance with ambient light.
    I have Canon + Tamron 17-50. For me it's more balanced than with kit lens. You might also want to check for 3rd party lenses if you think there aren't enough Canon primes in the range of 20-35mm. You can even get Carl Zeiss lenses

  5. #5
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    Default Re: 500D, D90 or A700

    Quote Originally Posted by nt9449 View Post
    Hi guys,




    500D:
    - Light and small
    - Good ISO performance
    - Liveview
    - Video
    - Not good AF in liveview
    - Not the biggest OVF of the 3 (0.87x)
    - Smallest grip
    - Build quality not the best here
    - Kit lens not good?
    - If mount with Heavy lens like Tamron 17-50, will it be awkward to hold?
    - Limited prime lenses 20-35mm? (cos I may find 50mm too tight at home)

    D90:
    - Good build quality and handling
    - Best ISO performance here
    - Liveview
    - Video (but without AF)
    - Slow AF in liveview
    - Biggest OVF here (0.94x)
    - Kit lens ok?
    - Is the new 35mm f1.8 good to buy? Seems many people selling already
    - Heavy?

    A700:
    - Best build quality here
    - Good performance
    - OK OVF (0.9x)
    - No so good ISO performance as compared to the other 2
    - No Liveview
    - No video
    - Friends got some Minolta lenses to share
    - Can get CZ1680
    - Limited lens options?
    - Heavy and big?
    - Seems new bodies like A500/550 already in rumour with video and Liveview, so is it ok to get this model?

    So guys, I know many will blast me for asking repeated questions here, but seriously, I have not seen enough comments or direct comparison for me to decide on, though I prefer the feel and handling of D90 and A700. But I would want to be on the safe side so as to be able to capture more beautiful images of my family while not overspending too much in future.

    Is 2 lenses like Tamron 17-50 and one wide prime (20-35mm) enough setup to start with?

    Please, appreciate any advice...
    Putting the 500D aside coz i have not tried that one. If you do not need the video and live view fuctions, go for the A700. Better ergonomics in my opinion, the D90 still feels small and flimsy in my hands. A700 has a very responsive shutter great LCD and like you mentioned, you will be able to exploit some legendary Minolta lens which your friends have.

    plus.. you'll get to fix an AF Carl Zeiss on your body. the 16-80 is probably all you need for beautiful family images..


  6. #6
    Senior Member Galdor's Avatar
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    Default Re: 500D, D90 or A700

    They are all very good cameras that can produce great pictures. Just go with your heart. Feel and play with the cams and see which is easier to use and feel most comfortable in your hands. Don't worry to much about specs & technical details. Things like ISO noise can be corrected with noise removal softwares, otherwise why would people care to develope such softwares? Moreover, you can always use a flash in dark areas.

    Depending on your usage, a 17-50mm may not be able to give you the reach you want, especially in the pool or out in the park. If you do not need a f2.8 there are much more options.
    Minolta. Konica Minolta. Sony

  7. #7

    Default Re: 500D, D90 or A700

    Seems many good comments on A700 and D90.

    Probably I should compare against 50D, D300 and A700 for really fair comparison?

    I should not be investing in too many lenses as do not want to overly commit to this "hobby" and neglect my family. I just maybe get the kit, with a fast zoom and a wide prime and later maybe a flashgun.

    I have heard for flash, Nikon seems to have an edge over the rest, is it true?

    I know CZ lenses are great, but afraid the cost involved will be great as well. However, after seeing prices of Canon and Nikon lenses are not cheap as well....so back to square one again.

  8. #8

    Default Re: 500D, D90 or A700

    Quote Originally Posted by nt9449 View Post
    Seems many good comments on A700 and D90.

    Probably I should compare against 50D, D300 and A700 for really fair comparison?

    I should not be investing in too many lenses as do not want to overly commit to this "hobby" and neglect my family. I just maybe get the kit, with a fast zoom and a wide prime and later maybe a flashgun.

    I have heard for flash, Nikon seems to have an edge over the rest, is it true?

    I know CZ lenses are great, but afraid the cost involved will be great as well. However, after seeing prices of Canon and Nikon lenses are not cheap as well....so back to square one again.
    50D and D300 are quite a bit more expensive than A700. A700 price is only slightly more expensive than D90, making it so attractive. Don't forget that with Sony system, you'll have in-body stablization as well. All lenses stablized is very nice to have, something that many C/N users tend to play down on.

    Nikon flash system is the best at the moment, but not by a large margin.

    Sony CZ lens price are comparable to Canon's L and Nikon's gold ringed in most cases.

  9. #9

    Default Re: 500D, D90 or A700

    This is really a FAQ and as you can see ... you will get very opinionated answers. At the end of the day, remember that you are the one using it and not anyone of us here. Each of us has our own priorities (cost, weight, lens variety, noise handling, full-HD video, etc) and hence we cast our votes based on those.

    Do make a trip down to any decent shop and try out the 3 models. Take some indoor shots, zoom all the way to check the noise, IQ. Feel the camera (grip, weight, etc). Take some video (if you like) .... btw, I have not even used any video recording on my D90 yet. I will learn it one of these days ... but it's not my priority now. Finally, buy the one that gives you the best feeling. If you still cannot decide (i.e. all 3 models are good to you), then just buy the cheapest (cos all of them are good DSLR anyway).

    Lastly, I cast my vote to Nikon D90 cos it's the best!!!
    Nikon.D90 | Canon.S90 | Project 365

  10. #10

    Default Re: 500D, D90 or A700

    Didn't have the chance to use the 500D but I have tried the 450D, D90 (which I owned, so perhaps some biased here) as well as the A700.

    Among the 3, you will find the Canon is really plasticky, so if you like a solid body and one with good ergo, you're left with the D90 and A700.

    In terms of picture quality, using 50mm primes, there is very little difference among them if you print 4Rs, it's just a matter of perference rather than pure quality. All of them are capable of good IQ.

    Low ISO and Noise control-wise, it's in my opinion that the D90 is the best.

    In terms of cost, if you're into primes, the nikkor 50mm/f1.8 can be had for about 190.

    I'm currently using the 18-105VR kit lens and the 50mm f/1.8. But the 50mm has not left the body since I've got it as it's the only one I need to take photos of my 7mths old baby.

    Hope this helps.


  11. #11

    Default Re: 500D, D90 or A700

    Get the A700. In the long run, Sony gives good lens at a price cheaper than Nikon. Similiar Ergonomics to the Nikon.. if not better.. Am a Nikon user and have played extensively with Sony Cameras.

    Sony = Nikon Ergonomics + Canon Colours. That is the initial feel I get.

    Cheers.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Galdor's Avatar
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    Default Re: 500D, D90 or A700

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Ng View Post
    Sony = Nikon Ergonomics + Canon Colours. That is the initial feel I get.
    Cheers.
    Canon colour?

    Not a fan of watercolour, I want my Minolta colour back.
    Minolta. Konica Minolta. Sony

  13. #13

    Default Re: 500D, D90 or A700

    look at their entire system compatability. Although u probably won;t buy all the lens, but if u advance in this hobby in the future, u may want to get specalised lens for certain photography. There are 2 major brands if u look carefully, u are spoilt for choice in the 2nd hand market. Bodies are usually same, it's just the latest are nicer to handle.
    Last edited by JW73; 12th June 2009 at 09:40 AM.

  14. #14

    Default Re: 500D, D90 or A700

    Sounds like you are mostly taking children and family shots (ie. the been there did that type of shots).

    A flash (preferably bounced) would make the largest difference to your indoor children photos regardless of camera body (even lower end or another brand).

  15. #15

    Default Re: 500D, D90 or A700

    I voted for D90. I just got mine last weekend. I choose D90 over 500D because the D90 have more function over the 500D. The D90 is mid range DSLR with top LCD. And also the D90 come with nicer kitlen 18-105mm. As for the video, the 500D is much better with full HD. And D90 video may produre flicker video under fluoresent light due to the 24fps but under other condition, it's nice.
    As for the A700, never across my mind. I choose between Canon and Nikon systems only. Most DSLR nowadays are able to produce good photo. It's a matter to learn and fully utilise the available function offered in the camera. For instant, a newbie bought Nikon D3X or maybe Canon 1Ds M3, all the photo shot may just look like normal. Technique and skill are more important in photography world. But of course, good camera will assist good photographer to take good photograph. When u plan to get one of this?
    Ronald Lee | DSLR World
    Armed | Nikon D90 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR | Canon Ixus i-Zoom Compact

  16. #16

    Default Re: 500D, D90 or A700

    Vote for Alpha system. Their lens, Carl Zeiss and minolta is the best with build in stablization, you dont have to worry anything about buying lens which like some brand with VR. And Sony is moving fast now. With alot of rumours here and there but it indeed come true. So why not try on A700. Then you can also dream of A950 30megapix dslr...
    Shoot and shoot and shoot
    Every shoot is a puzzle to the world of photography...

  17. #17

    Default Re: 500D, D90 or A700

    I was in your shoes few month back. I chose the D90 for its video (which now I feel is a scam because I understand the camera better) but for pic taking, it is a great cam for hobbyist level. Also i sold my kit 18-105 and got a tammy 17-50. IMHO grab a d90 body only and then the 35mm f1.8. Practice shooting w it and it is great for baby and family pic. I got the 35mm f2 cos i like that lens better (contemplating between a 35mm f2 or sigma 30mm F1.4).

    You can grab a pre-own tammy from the B&S for 500-600bucks. just check for the usual focusing issues and lens condition.

    IMHO the d90 is the overall average winner. But if you stuck lottery this weekend, then you can consider 5D or D700.

  18. #18

    Default Re: 500D, D90 or A700

    Get the A700. It has the sensor of the more expensive D300 with all the benefits of in-built image stabilization and autofocus Carl Zeiss lenses. Plus the joystick-based navigation is fantastic, and C and N are only beginning to copy it now.
    Alpha

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