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Entry level DSLR (used) and macro - Nikon or Canon?

Discussion in 'Beginner's Corner' started by Blurred Image, Sep 7, 2017.

  1. Blurred Image

    Blurred Image Active Member

    Buying a budget / used Nikon or Canon DSLR shortly with a single kit lens. Which is likely to be better for close up photography/macro. Also landscape.

    I'll be buying secondhand so it might be body plus standard kit lens or body plus separate lens. If the latter I guess I might have more choice but more expense.

    Can kit lenses be any good?

    If buying body and lens separate, what is a good lens to get for Canon or Nikon (depending which I get, not decided yet)?
  2. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    Neither is better, unless you want greater than life-size macro. Whichever you feel most comfortable with will do.
    Kit lenses are generally not bad for landscape - they're a bit ropey wide open, and tend to have some distortion, but otherwise aren't terrible at all these days.
    cliveva likes this.
  3. Blurred Image

    Blurred Image Active Member

    So camera body isn't much different between the brands. What about the lenses? Are there better lenses available for one of these brands or are they as good?

    Basically I'm returning to photography with no budget, well £150-300. I want to take photographs when out walking, so landscapes as I passed, close up shots of nature, etc. I'll only afford camera and one lens so am looking for the best lens / camera I can get. Obvious wish but not easy. Made worse because it was all 35mm slr cameras back when I was keen. I guess matching brand lens to camera is better than say Tamron lens or sigma lens?
  4. Geren

    Geren Well-Known Member

    Nothing wrong with Sigma lenses for either make. I've bought used from Wex before and been very happy. Right now they have this:


    and if you use their search engine for canon fit lenses there are several options that should fit it and which woudl cover your needs at this stage.
  5. El_Sid

    El_Sid Well-Known Member

    Bodies tend to operate much the same though the control layout will be different. Neither is inherently better than the other and once you get used to whichever system it then becomes natural.

    The basic kit lenses are acceptable and the later versions more so. There are better lenses available in the same kind of range but these do tend to be more expensive - especially the OEM versions. Sigma and Tamron both do well regarded 17-50 type f2.8 zooms but I suspect these will challenge your budget even used. Sigma also do a nice 17-70mm in various versions, an early non-HSM, non-OS version could be in your budget range. If you go with Nikon they did a nice 18-70mm lens which you can sometimes find for a reasonable price.
  6. MJB

    MJB Well-Known Member

    A cheap way of doing macro photography would be a set of extension tubes and a 50mm prime.
    RogerMac and Andrew Flannigan like this.
  7. Snorri

    Snorri Well-Known Member

    Well the biggest difference between Nikon and Canon is layout and ergonomics, you will find that same age bodies from the same range will give you more or less the same quality and specs.
    The kit lenses are often given unfair rep as at least the EF-S18-55 IS II is actually very good. Personally I prefer Canon and do tell people that are on tight budget to look at the eos 600D as it can be found very cheap with the IS II lens.
    For macro it is all about the lens and you can get good ones for both Canon an Nikon. So it is down to you, try few out as the current models have much in common with the second hand ones and will give you an idea of what you prefer. You could add Pentax to your list as there have been very good ones from them as well.
  8. EightBitTony

    EightBitTony Well-Known Member

    If you know *anyone* else with a DSLR, consider buying the same make of body that they have so you can borrow (and lend) lenses. The only reason I got a Canon was because a friend had 5 or 6 lenses and it saved me a load of money early on being able to borrow his.

    But, some people get on with some bodies better than others, so if you have a local store it's good to go in and try a few.
  9. Blurred Image

    Blurred Image Active Member

    Tried a 1300D and a D3400 today. Not a real test because I was short on time and one had needed charging. They both seemed similar. The nikon had a lens that you pressed a button on the lens and the end came out. Folded optics the sales guy said. Not sure I liked that somehow.

    They feel bigger and heavier than my ancient Minolta slr but more plasticky and less solid somehow. Are modern dslr cameras better or worse made than old film cameras? Less solidly built?

    I think I'll go with a Nikon because I have a vain hope I'll be able to borrow some lenses from someone with a nikon.
  10. EightBitTony

    EightBitTony Well-Known Member

    I never owned an old film camera, so I can't really comment. But my 600D (entry level Canon) is small and light, but pretty solid. When you get towards the mid-level (so 70D for Canon) or high-end (5D, 7D on Canon) they're built like tanks.

    Good luck with whatever you choose, and I hope you enjoy the photography.
  11. Chester AP

    Chester AP Well-Known Member

    As other replies have said, there probably isn't much to choose between a budget Canon or Nikon camera body. But don't rush to buy new, because there is so much good-condition used stuff about, courtesy of those people who have to buy the latest model every year or two. The same applies to lenses.

    For the price of a new budget body and 18-55 mm kit lens, you could probably get a good condition 'mid range' body and a much better lens. Somebody else has mentioned the old-model Sigma 17-70 mm lens. I found one of these secondhand a couple of years ago for £100 and it is now my 'standard lens' that I use if I am travelling light and only want to take one lens. It is far more versatile than a standard 18-55 mm kit lens, and the 'macro' facility at 70 mm works well.

    Later you may find a used Sigma 10-20 mm is good for landscapes, and a used Sigma 50 mm Macro (or used Tamron 90 mm Macro) good for 'serious' macro. I have picked up good used examples of all of these during the last ten years. If you think you will want to get more lenses later, and buy them secondhand, you will find the greatest choice in Canon or Nikon mounts.

    You could choose not to follow the crowd and restrict yourself to Canon or Nikon. Look also at used Pentax DSLR bodies - you may be pleasantly surprised at the ergonomics of having two control dials rather the single one you will have on Canon or Nikon bodies (unless you get one of the more expensive models). However, the choice of secondhand lenses with a Pentax mount will probably reduce over time because Sigma and Tamron have virtually abandoned making new lenses with this mount.
  12. Snorri

    Snorri Well-Known Member

    If Nikon then you could look at the D5100 if I remember right it was highly regarded for its low light performance and again over all a great camera that can be found really cheap. Just make sure the 18-55 is the VR version.
  13. IvorCamera

    IvorCamera Well-Known Member

    Although I have been in photography for more years than I can remember I use a (a so called beginner's camera) Nikon D3300 for everyday stuff and when I am on my travels it has 18-55mm on it at all times, so thats a camera I would recommend they are a past model and are now quite reasonable priced on the 2nd hand market, I have to say that I am a nikon user thats why I recomend this camera...If you are into Canon cameras then I am sure they would have a similar camera in their line up too, and I dare say other manufacturers have has well.......best of luck with your choice!
  14. Kano

    Kano Member

    Hi sorry to jump on this but as you mentioned some models around my budget i was looking at, the Canon 700d and Nikon D3400, is there one over the other you would recommend for indoor sports (martial arts) photopgraphy and possibly video? I have been offered a hardly used 700d for £270 or can get a new D3400 for £320 (both with 18-55 mm kit lens) , thanks
  15. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    You will get a similar answer to that of Snorri in the other post you added to. It is always better to start your own post, then all the answers come to one place and there is less confusion as to who is being answered. Camera choice is down to personal preference.
  16. Kano

    Kano Member

    apologies, will do (y)

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