Monday, November 19, 2007

This one's juuuuust right

A friend recently pulled a Nikon DSLR ad out of her purse, handed it to me and said, "I'm considering getting this...what do you think?" I gave her my spiel about buying a camera, which is pretty simple: you can't go wrong with Nikon or Canon; you just have to get to a camera store and hold them. Really, the camera has to feel good in your hands. It can't be too small or too big, and you have to make sure that when you use it your nose doesn't bump into a command dial. (That can be a real issue for those of us who are left-eye dominant, since most cameras are designed for right eyers.) Basically, I firmly recommend the Goldilocks method of purchasing a camera, once you narrow it down to a few well-known, trusted brands.

She looked at me like I was crazy (my friend is, after all, someone I'd classify as "the lazy rich") and I sighed and said, "Okay, I'll dig into it and let you know."

Being The Photographer among friends and family means I have the honor of researching/choosing cameras for them. Which is fine by me, as it keeps me current on trends and technology and it's fun. Too much fun. Just ask M.

Because this is what happens. Last night I went to Nikon and checked out the D40 for my friend, and in the process got sidetracked by the D200 and the D80, both of which are considerably newer than my pal ol' Mr. D100.

Now, the D100 is a great camera. I love it. Love love love it. It's enabled me to take tons of fantastic shots and has been a reliable, faithful friend.

But its 6.1 megapixels whimper in comparison to the 10.2 of the D200 and D80. Yowza! We won't even get into the spot metering capabilities or frames-per-second or anything like that.

I'm like a small child who is easily distracted by shiny objects. Or, in Zoe's case, the mere mention of ice meema (ice cream). My friend's possible D40 has become a mere footnote, "Yeah, yeah, it'll do what you need it to...good camera...I recommend it..." while I salivate over the new technology.

In other words, it's the equivalent of M seeing a Corvette while driving his Acura RSX. He loves his sporty little car until he's sitting next to a 'Vette at a light, or more accurately, until he's sitting in some Corvette's dust after one blows past him on the highway. Suddenly the RSX feels like a Pinto in comparison. It's not a bad car, it's just a bad car relatively speaking.

Which is what I'm saying about my D100. It's not a bad camera. It's just a bad camera relatively speaking.

This is the point where M will tell me that I can have a new camera body when he gets a Corvette. He's right, but damn, it's going to be hard going back to shooting with a Pinto.


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