Sunday, March 29, 2009

New Camera: Nikon D90

I got a new camera, a Nikon D90. Didn't need one as my Nikon D40 is an outstanding camera in terms of image quality. The D40 has a 6.1M CCD and with those large pixels, the noise characteristics are great. I really like the compactness and low weight of the D40. The D90 is bigger and heavier for sure. It also has a 12.1Mpixel CMOS detector and even with the higher pixel density has the same noise per area in the focal plane of the camera (electronics magic) so there is a little more resolution and ability to crop images. Still I would not have "upgraded" except the D90 was a present. So, I've got it now what do I think?

I do like the 11-point focus scheme which is faster and better than the D40.

I'm looking at a bunch of lenses for the D90 that don't autofocus on the D40. First new lens might be a Tokina 11-16 f/2.8.

The D90 is really quick at firing off images -- much quicker than the D40 and I like that capability to reel off 4 frames/sec.

I'll put up some comparison photos soon, but I can tell easily that the D90 images are less noisy that the D40 at iso800 and above.

The cats are cropped to about 1/3 of the original frame. Then downsized to to 1024 pixels in the largest dimension jpgs.

D90 + Sigma 30mm
f2.0, 1/60sec, iso200

I have a bunch of point and shoot digitals. The first one was the Canon A50 (leftmost in the top shot below). 1 Mpixel and so slow that sometimes you pushed the shutter down, and put the camera in your pocket before the picture was actually taken. But, it was incredible to be able to take very good images, get immediate feedback and shoot as much as you wanted without worrying about wasting film and the cost of developing.

All told, I think there are 11 P&S digital cameras in drawers and cabinets around the house. The best of the point and shoots is my Canon G3 - has a great f/2.0 lense and fully manual options (on the right with the wide-angle lens). The Canon S2 (on the left in the lower image) is one of those 12x zoom cameras that are pretty nice. Vibration control and 640x480 30fps movie mode is great. But, when I first got the Nikon D40 SLR it was an amazing jump in response and low-noise imaging with the much larger CCD compared to any of the compact digital cameras.

The P&S cameras I carry around now are an SD880 IS and that little SD200. What I like about the SD880 it is that the wide end of the zoom is the equivalent of 28mm with a 35mm camera. In good light, it takes great photos. It also has a dedicated iso button for quick adjustments. The little SD200 is very compact, weightless, takes pretty good shots. I take it flyfishing and climbing.


Sara said...

Its hard to compare a dslr like the nikon d90 to a point and shoot camera . Although I would never leave the house with out at least a point and shoot camera.

Tony333 said...
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