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Author Topic: 30D vs D200  (Read 55403 times)
Emersonp
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« on: March 26, 2006, 09:03:01 AM »
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First of all, I'm a newbie; so pardon my innocence.

This is going to be my first DSLR purchase. I'm a beginner enthusiast and am looking for a great camera to grow in. I would most be interested in taking the following pictures: land/sky- scapes, sports, wildlife, portraits, and macros.

Please correct me if I'm wrong, but I get this sense that Canon and Nikon users feel very 'critical' (to say the least) about each other's equipment. I would like to get your opinion on the contrasting Pros & Cons of owning a Canon 30D or a Nikon D200. Also, I would like to get your thoughts on the lenses, performance, hardiness (weatherproof?) between the two.

Lastly, I can't sort out the lens nomenclature for Nikon.

Thank you so much. I would truly appreciate the feedback.  

Best,

Emerson
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boku
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« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2006, 09:27:30 AM »
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First of all, I'm a newbie; so pardon my innocence.

This is going to be my first DSLR purchase. I'm a beginner enthusiast and am looking for a great camera to grow in. I would most be interested in taking the following pictures: land/sky- scapes, sports, wildlife, portraits, and macros.

Please correct me if I'm wrong, but I get this sense that Canon and Nikon users feel very 'critical' (to say the least) about each other's equipment. I would like to get your opinion on the contrasting Pros & Cons of owning a Canon 30D or a Nikon D200. Also, I would like to get your thoughts on the lenses, performance, hardiness (weatherproof?) between the two.

Lastly, I can't sort out the lens nomenclature for Nikon.

Thank you so much. I would truly appreciate the feedback.   

Best,

Emerson
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=61043\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I am very commited to the Canon system because they got me started with the Digital Rebel. Currently I own a 20D and a 5D with a collection of expensive Canon glass (which keeps me tethered to the Canon system). I view the 30D as being very similar to the 20D.

Having said that, and contrary to your expectations of brand loyalty, if I were in your shoes I would go for the Nikon D200. The only caveat would be the sense of comfort you feel when you hold the camera - you need to assure your level of comfort. I have worked along side of a few D200 photographers and have a great appreciation for the camera as a cohesive whole. Based on my perception, I feel that the Nikon offering is a higher-quality build and and delivers equivelent images.
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Bob Kulon

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bob mccarthy
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« Reply #2 on: March 26, 2006, 09:30:38 AM »
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Lastly, I can't sort out the lens nomenclature for Nikon.

Thank you so much. I would truly appreciate the feedback.   

Best,

Emerson
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

 A few to get you started

[a href=\"http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography/companies/nikon/nikkoresources/index.htm]http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography/compa...urces/index.htm[/url]

http://www.naturfotograf.com/index2.html

http://www.bythom.com/index.htm

This will help in the Nikon world. The mir site also covers Canon.


Bob
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DarkPenguin
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« Reply #3 on: March 26, 2006, 09:41:50 AM »
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I've got to agree with Bob.  However the 30D is quite a bit cheaper and is certainly in the same class as the D200.

Everyone makes good lenses these days.  (The Nikon 18-200 vr looks like the coolest vacation lens ever made.)

One thing to note is that Nikon has made no indication that they will produce a 35mm equiv camera.  So if you want to go full frame in the future (and not do a complete lens swap at the time) you might want to go with canon now.

I would get the D200 unless the price difference forced me to go cheap on my lenses.  (In which case I would get a 20D used.)
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Richard Dawson
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« Reply #4 on: March 26, 2006, 11:29:39 AM »
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Emerson,

I wonder if it is fair to decide between Nikon and Canon, using camera bodies as the basis for comparison.  It seems to me that lenses are what really matter.  If boku and DarkPenguin were starting fresh -- with insurance money provided after a fire, theft or other catastrophe -- what would the decision be?  To me, that’s what matters.

In thinking about the various cameras I have owned, the only ones whose capabilities I can say I even came close to exploiting were a Kodak Signet 35, the Canon  FTb, and maybe my Olympus XA.  All are basic, straight ahead boxes that do the job.  To paraphrase a sexist joke, a camera body is nothing more that a life support system for a lens.  Some look better than others, cost [a lot] more, and do little tricks way beyond the average, ordinary FTb.  In the final analysis, the lens is what counts.

The D200 may very well be superior to the 30D.  Today.  The next release of either company may reverse that fact.  I am comfortable with my collection of expensive Canon glass, as I am sure boku and DarkPenguin are with theirs.

Consider your needs in terms of lenses.  Does Nikon offer something you need that Canon doesn’t?  Is a tilt/shift lens in your future?  The answers to questions like these should have more to do with your decision than the relative merits of two camera bodies that will someday be distant memories.

Boku, I read every word you post on this forum.  People like you are a big part of what makes LL the valuable resource that it is.   You are welcome in my home at any time.  But, just this one time, I think you are a little off the mark.

DarkPenguin, the points you add regarding full frame and cost differences are valid.  I differ with you where you agree with boku.  Praise for boku applies to you, as well.

Richard
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macgyver
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« Reply #5 on: March 26, 2006, 02:05:22 PM »
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Before I give my speil, I must say that I have no hands on experiance with either camera, just what I've read or heard and my own conclusions.

That being said, you mentioned that you might want to shoot sports.  Sporting events are often shot in venues with very poor lighting, or, at best, barely minimal lighting.  From what I have read, and I'm especially thinking of something writen on Rob Galbraith by the publishers, the D200 is said to have worse noise than the equivalent canon at high ISOs.  This would translate into decreased image quality in such situations.  One of the reasons I went with canon gear was seeing that difference myself between the two cameras I was using at that time from each company.

That being said, I think the D200 is one attractive camera as well as the 30D, and I really doubt that you could go wrong with either.
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boku
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« Reply #6 on: March 26, 2006, 02:45:14 PM »
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Boku, I read every word you post on this forum.  People like you are a big part of what makes LL the valuable resource that it is.   You are welcome in my home at any time.  But, just this one time, I think you are a little off the mark.[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=61066\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

You response makes sense. I'm not sure that what I wrote is in any way contradictory. We are describing different dimensions of the solution.

It has to be said - my collection of lenses has equivelents in the Nikon lineup. I know that each manufacturer has some unique offerings, but these do not affect me because of my needs. (Except for, I lust for a imaginary Canon 200-400 f/4 IS - Nikon offers one.)

My point is this - either camera can generate equivalent quality images. From what my eyes and hands tell me the Nikon body has more "finish" (but that really doesn't matter except for putting a smile on your face). I was under the assumption the 30D and D200 were about $100-$200 apart - that shouldn't be the deciding factor.

If you have glass - like me - its a no brainer - stay with what you have. If you need special glass that only one offers - your choice is again obvious. If you are starting out and you can get the glass you need from either Canon or Nikon, I'd go for Nikon. If you think full frame is in your future, I'd avoid the whole APS-C thing now and go directly to the 5D. I spent a bundle switching from the 20D to 5D - the only lens I reused was the 17-40. The 1.6 factor makes quite a difference. Might as well pony up right out of the gate.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2006, 02:47:11 PM by boku » Logged

Bob Kulon

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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2006, 07:08:36 PM »
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If I were you, I'd wait for the DPreview review of the 30D.

That will provide a first level of objective information on the body. Most of us assume that it is basically a 20D with only minor modifications, but there might be plus or minus that the spec sheet doesn't really reveal.

This being said, my personnal view is that the D200 is probably significantly more camera for not that much more money.

High iso noise is probably the only area where the 30D is a bit ahead, the rest, including the DX lens line up, is IMHO in favour of the Nikon. Nikon does also have a clear commitment to the DX format, that will help preserve the value of your investement in lenses in the coming years.

In case you haven't read it yet, the Thom's review of the D200 is interesting:

http://www.bythom.com/d200review.htm

Regards,
Bernard
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John Camp
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« Reply #8 on: March 26, 2006, 10:41:04 PM »
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I'm in the Nikon system, but I don't think it makes a lot of difference unless you have some specific interests that might weigh more heavily toward one side or the other. For example, if you think you might shoot architecture, I'd go with the Canon for a better range of shift lenses. If you think you might do wildlife, I'd go with Nikon for the 1.5 lens factor. High school basketball, probably the Canon for high ISO; lots of flash work, maybe the Nikon because of the great flash system. So, there are differences, but for most people, I think there are more differences perceived in Internet forums than in photographs. IMHO, of course.

JC
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starriver
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« Reply #9 on: March 29, 2006, 03:18:23 PM »
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Take a look at http://www.completedigitalphotography.com/?p=419 for an interesting comparative review.
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BJL
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« Reply #10 on: March 29, 2006, 05:43:55 PM »
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One thing to note is that Nikon has made no indication that they will produce a 35mm equiv camera.  [a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=61051\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Indeed, Nikon has given every indication that they are going to design all their DSLR bodies in the DX format, ensuring development of a full range of lenses up to their highest quality specifically adapted to the needs of DX format cameras like the D200.

On the other hand, Canon has indicated that their highest level offerings will continue to be 35mm format bodies and EF lenses, so their is more risk that Canon will not develop a full range of high quality lenses adapted to the needs of EF-S format cameras like the 30D. Normal to telephoto 35mm format EF lenses will work fine on the 30D, but the risk is that there will limited high quality EF-S lens options for the shorter focal lengths. One example is the lack of an EF-S 180º fisheye; a 35mm format fisheye loses its 180º coverage on the 30D.
However, the new Canon 17-55/2.8 IS mitigates this concern; Canon seems to be pushing EF-S format at least to a quite advanced amateur level, even if they so far refuse to use the adjective "professional" for EF-S products, or to put the "L" label on any EF-S lens.

Nikon's single-minded commitment to DX format seems to offer a clear advantage of likely forward compatibility and future support for the purchaser of a DX format body or lenses, compared to Canon's more equivocal attitude to EF-S.
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macgyver
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« Reply #11 on: March 29, 2006, 11:20:26 PM »
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I have to agree with BL on the lens issue.  Canon frustrates me in the regard.  (OT, but does anyone know when reviews of those 17-55's should start showing up?)
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jd1566
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« Reply #12 on: April 03, 2006, 11:19:01 AM »
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Hello Emerson,
Looks like quite a lot of ink has been spilt in trying to answer your question.  
I feel very much in Bob's shoes, insofar as I have been a Canon shooter for the last 10 years, through Film to Digital.  Were I to start afresh and had to chose between the 30D and the D200, I would go for the latter.  As a Camera BODY the Nikon definately has the edge.  A much more pro level camera for the bucks (it even competes against it's own big brother, the D2X!!!).  Nikon have listened to what (some) photographers want and have loaded this camera with features that will keep you busy for quite a few years.  The 30D camera is instead a minor upgrade, and you can expect a better camera in 18 months.. not that much better, but a step up from what it is today.  In that sense Canon = Windows.. ugrade often.  Nikon = Apple.. Your investment will last longer. This is a generalisation, forumdwellers. It's made as an example, not to step on anyone's toes! So keep your replies in kind please.


Lenswise... Both Nikon and Canon make great lenses, and each have their own top notch lenses.  Case in point is the 200-400 VR f4 Nikon which must be a dream to shoot.  Canon has it's straight IS telephotos which are also superb.  On a more practical level the 18-200 VR Nikon is (to paraphrase another post) an excellent all-round lens.  If you just buy one lens, go for that.

There is of course the FF vs reduced frame debate.. But I would avoid it if I were you.  In Canon turf there is an offering for every concievable consumer.. and you'll find yourself upgrading often as you outgrow your photographic needs.  Nikon's philosophy is to pack their bodies with as much stuff as possible.. so you have room to grow and don't have to trade in your camera after 18 months. With Nikon patience and well though out camera ergonomics is the name of the game.  If you feel that you are an "upgrade junky" with other things in your life (think stereos, walkmen, cars etc) then rather go for the Canon.  There WILL be a better product in 12-18 months, which you will want to buy...
 
If appreciate upfront quality and durability then go for the Nikon.

If you are a PHOTOGRAPHER then either machine and lenses will be quite adequate for taking pictures.
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #13 on: April 04, 2006, 04:16:14 AM »
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DPreview has just released a very positive review of the Canon 30D:

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/canoneos30d/

Regards,
Bernard
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MrIconoclast
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« Reply #14 on: April 08, 2006, 02:43:49 PM »
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It's hard to go wrong with either system.  I know Nikon guys who are would like to see VR on their 500mm and 600mm lenses like Canon has done.  I know Canon guys whose tongues hang out and they start panting when they see a Nikon 200-400 VR lens.

Nikon also has done some great things with remote flash systems.  I know many people don't value the flash system as highly as the lens system, but light is still the way we record images on the digital sensor or the film.
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gingerbaker
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« Reply #15 on: April 16, 2006, 01:07:19 PM »
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First of all, I'm a newbie; so pardon my innocence.Emerson


Only the guilty need to be pardoned - you have no worries  Grin

Quote
This is going to be my first DSLR purchase. I'm a beginner enthusiast and am looking for a great camera to grow in. I would most be interested in taking the following pictures: land/sky- scapes, sports, wildlife, portraits, and macros.


That's a pretty broad palette!

Quote
Please correct me if I'm wrong, but I get this sense that Canon and Nikon users feel very 'critical' (to say the least) about each other's equipment.


I don't think the term "very critical" is called for here.. No, I think "maniacally malevolent" is more appropriate  

Example:  I am going to take my camera , and maniacally malevolent your head with it until you are dead".


 
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I would like to get your opinion on the contrasting Pros & Cons of owning a Canon 30D or a Nikon D200. Also, I would like to get your thoughts on the lenses, performance, hardiness (weatherproof?) between the two.




OK - here goes.  I would like to respectfully disagree with many of the opinions put forth by the previous good-willed posters.  This will just show to go you that an informed, rational decision is impossible in these matters.

Some points:

1)  As a newbie, you can't walk up to a sales counter and try out different DSLR bodies, and make any kind of intelligent decisions about whether one "feels better" than the other one or not, or will one camera be easier to use.  You don't yet know how to use one, so how would you know?

2)  What you CAN feel is the relative solidity, size, bulk, and weight of these cameras.  I will go out on a limb and predict that - at least if you are like me - you will come away with the conclusion that both the D200 and the 30D are built like Sherman tanks.

   And this should give you insight into the validity of all the posts you will no doubt read claiming that one camera is built so much better then another.  Both ergonomic designs have their advocates, and you will get used to whichever one you buy in short time, and will therefore despise the other camera forever, because it doesn't "feel" right.  Just so you know.

3) While what we really spend money on, and what we keep in our bags forever are our lenses, tis true - digital camera bodies are not anymore just interchangeable boxes.  The sensors and computers inside make a pretty big difference in how the pictures look, and to some extent, even what kinds of photographs you can  take.

=> Fair disclosure - I have a Canon system.  I am definately biased.  The 20D I have was my first sophisticated camera, and I was torn between it and the D70.  If deciding today versus the D200, my decision, however, would be the same - but that's just me. Here's why I went the way I did:

4) The Canon CMOS sensor and accompanying processor flat out produces less noise while still retaining fine detail at  all ISO levels above 100 compared to the Nikon system, although both work identically well at ISO 100. The difference in noise/suppressed detail gets greater as ISO goes up.  This is either a crises or a trivial matter, depending on which brand of camera you own

This was important to me , and judging from the genres of photography you listed, just might be important to you, ie landscapes, skyscapes; sports; wildlife.

 Yes - even landscapes, as there will be times when you want to take a hand-held ISO 800 landscape, with fine detail, and print it at large size.  (Also, Tilt-shift lenses, available  from Canon, are a huge sophistication and advantage for your landscape photography.)

 Skyscapes, and especially, long-exposure night-time and astrophotography, are a situation where the CMOS sensor is an absolute blessing, if not a necessity.

Low-light sports is another common situation where higher ISO performance is much appreciated, as is wildlife shooting.

Add to all of this the fact that the lens selection of the Canon system is quite a bit larger than the Nikon.

My conclusion was that these were all advantages for Canon, and that Nikon offered no counterbalance, as far as inherent image quality potential.  All I heard was "FUD".  Arguments spreading "Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt" that the Canon advantages were actually advantages you really needed.

However, what the D200 does give you is a fair amount of electronic features that the 30D lacks.   I especially like the exposure bracketing  flexibilty, the built-in wireless flash controller.  Those are REALLY useful features that require extra money or a work-around on the 30D.  

The D200 gives you weathersealing as well, although to be fair, not all the camera is sealed and it is not promoted as fully sealed.  Better than the 30D, though.

5)  There is something to be said for buying into the camera company with the best R&D, supply line, and product breadth as well.  Canon develops and manufactures their own sensors.  

Nikon has them made out of house, by companies now about to compete with them head to head in the DSLR marketplace.  While they claim to have settled on a single sensor size  - eschewing the larger full-frame size with its inherent advantages (some drawbacks) and potentials - they still haven't even settled on a sensor technology, as they go back and forth between CCD and CMOS. This is a tad troubling to me.

6) Full-frame.

 I am about to move up to a 5D, while keeping my 20D as a backup.  All my lenses will work on both cameras.  The larger sensor on the 5D has a lot of advantages over the smaller sensor in the 20D.  And, down the road, the potential for image quality upgrades is likely to come only with larger format sensors.  One has to question whether 'tis wise to invest in APS-size only lenses, or a sensor size whose potential for image-quality improvement is limited by physics, not human imagination.

7) Performance

Man I can not tell if one of these cams is better than another!  I read some professional reviewers say one thing, others the opposite,  and the same goes for owners.  The 30D seems a slightly better focuser than the 20D, and now has a spot meter.  The D200 has a smaller spot meter, and some sportier metering modes.  Time will tell, I guess.



All that said, the NikonD200 and Nikon system may be perfect for you.  The D200 takes darn good pictures .  Really good pictures.

 What counts is how much you enjoy taking the photos you take, and how they come out.  I hope my absolutely biased perspective at least offers something fresh for you to ponder.  Good luck with your purchase!  

Gingerbaker
« Last Edit: April 16, 2006, 03:21:27 PM by gingerbaker » Logged
Bobtrips
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« Reply #16 on: April 16, 2006, 02:01:51 PM »
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OK - here goes.  I would like to respectfully disagree with many of the opinions put forth by the previous good-willed posters.  This will just show to go you that an informed, rational decision is impossible in these matters.


Gingerbaker
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I suppose one has to go into these buying situations with a bit of Blind Faith?
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gingerbaker
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« Reply #17 on: April 16, 2006, 02:31:08 PM »
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I suppose one has to go into these buying situations with a bit of Blind Faith?
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  OUCH!!     Good one, though.

I live in Vermont, home of Magic Hat Beer.  One of their best is, you guessed it - "Blind Faith".  Definately recommend some serious Blind Faith contemplative ruminationaryisms on the D200 - 30D thing.  Eventually, the ....  Cream will rise to the top?  ............
.........................................
...................................

(crickets)
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Peter Jon White
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« Reply #18 on: April 16, 2006, 02:35:50 PM »
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For landscapes and macro work, Canon has a clear advantage. Their TS-E lenses help you get the entire subject into sharp focus, rather than just a plane parallel to the sensor in focus. And when used with extension tubes, you have much more control over the shallow depth of field available at high magnifications by tilting the lens.

Nikon makes only one lens with tilts, the 85mm. Canon makes three, 24mm, 45mm and 90mm.
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gingerbaker
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« Reply #19 on: April 16, 2006, 03:22:47 PM »
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Thanks for pointing that out, Peter.  I corrected my post.  
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