D90 or Canon T2i as a light backup/vacation body to D300?

Joined
Apr 26, 2009
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A former user of D700, I now shoot (important things) with D300. However, for lighter duty/vacations, I am thinking about either D90 or Canon T2i. I have basic lenses in both Nikon and Canon mount, so having proper lenses is not my consideration.

I need some ideas here, to move along my thought process.

1) D7000 is out of question. I had it before, sold it for various reasons, and don't believe at its current price, it is something I need now.

2) So I am between D90 and T2i. I don't want any Nikon motorless bodies like D3100 for many reasons, including some of my DX lenses require motors.

3) Whats important to me for this vacation body/lighter setup in order of performance is 1) autofocus speed, 2) autofocus accuracy in low light, 3) low light High ISO performance, 4) compactness, 5) FPS.

4) What is not important to me at all: video. Also assume I have basic lenses I would need on vacation in both mounts so it is not a consideration. Also assume that I have owned Rebels and can deal with the small grip of a Rebel.

I've read the comparisons on line and I am still not convinced one way or the other.

Autofocus speed/performance: Both have only 1 cross sensor only in center. Both have outer points that are not cross points. Canon Rebel has 9 point autofocus system that has not been improved in a while. But D90 has a system that has not changed since D200/D80 which was also in 2005. I have not shot D90 (probably the only Nikon body that I have not used) and I have shot T2i and every other Rebel. I can't tell real life difference in autofocus speed/accuracy especially in low light. I know that Rebel T2i now uses the new metering system that comes from 7D. Neither camera allows autoadjustment of lenses which kind of bothers me but hey.

Low Light Performance: I look at samples and it frankly hard for me to judge the difference, especially since we are comparing a 12MP and 18MP sensor here. D90 has autoiso between 200-3200 and goes up to 6400 max. T2i has autoiso between 100-6400 and goes up to 12800. I did use T2i at ISO12800 and it is not useable.

FPS: 4.5 vs 3.7 which gives clear advantage to D90. Top display - D90 advantage. Compactness - T2i wins easily.

Other pros and cons: D90 I can share batteries with my D300. On the other hand, it appears from everything I read that the sensors are the same with my D300 so essentially I am buying a very similar camera which is only 200 grams lighter. It feels like more of the same.

T2i is half of D300 size and weight and uses different 18MP sensor so there is something different. And it is 2 years newer than D90. On the other hand with 18MP Crop Sensor, one needs best lenses and it is not as forgiving as Nikon D90 sensor.

So what would you get if you were in my shoes?
 
Joined
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I'd go with the D90, for vacation snaps you sound like you made your decision. And do you really need 18mp? If you got lenses for your D300, why buy another system?
 
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You list you have a panasonic GF1, why not take this one? Seems the cheapest solution over buying another body and is very light.
 
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You list you have a panasonic GF1, why not take this one? Seems the cheapest solution over buying another body and is very light.

correct, the GF1 is going to my wife she can carry it and shoot with it. I need something more substantial and I like to use viewfinder. We have the viewfinder for GF1 but everyone knows, it is not the greatest, to say the least.

At night time I do often carry GF1 with 20mm F/1.7 prime and it creates a tiny combo, thats for sure
 
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Mar 16, 2008
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Miramar,FL
Then, I don't know what to recommend. I have a Canon XTi and a Nikon D40 and want to upgrade myself to more megapixels and more functions. I had the D300 and a Canon 5Dc in the past and got rid of them because of the weight and kept the XTi. I bought a D40 recently and a Nikkor 18-200 VR II with the intention of switching back to Nikon after sellig my Canon gear but my wife states that the Xti is hers and cannot be sold. Well, to make a long story short since this is your post and not mine. I am in the same position that you are now and most probably will go with the D90 since I miss the Nikon system and its configurability, etc. I've been thinking about the T2i as well but I think I woudn't be as happier as with the D90. I haven't made my mind yet and I don't know if my wife will let me get camera after all.

Regards
 
Joined
Apr 26, 2009
Messages
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Then, I don't know what to recommend. I have a Canon XTi and a Nikon D40 and want to upgrade myself to more megapixels and more functions. I had the D300 and a Canon 5Dc in the past and got rid of them because of the weight and kept the XTi. I bought a D40 recently and a Nikkor 18-200 VR II with the intention of switching back to Nikon after sellig my Canon gear but my wife states that the Xti is hers and cannot be sold. Well, to make a long story short since this is your post and not mine. I am in the same position that you are now and most probably will go with the D90 since I miss the Nikon system and its configurability, etc. I've been thinking about the T2i as well but I think I woudn't be as happier as with the D90. I haven't made my mind yet and I don't know if my wife will let me get camera after all.

Regards

See what I dont really like about 18-200VR is that it is just so front heavy, especially on smaller bodies like D40. I replaced mine with 18-135 first and then 18-105. Even on D80 it felt front heavy to me. I have tried pretty much every camera from Nikon camp except D90... I wish I knew how it behaves....
 
Joined
Feb 28, 2006
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Since you have used the D80, I believe the body is pretty much the same size and weight. Better screen, more fps, better sensor etc. How does that sound?
 
Joined
Aug 28, 2008
Messages
682
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Colorado, USA
So what would you get if you were in my shoes?
Just wondering if you really thought anyone here would tell you to go get a T2i? Posting in a Nikon forum?
And just wondering you thought was lacking in the D7000 at it's price Point? I don't think there's many people out there who wouldn't say that it's one of the best values out there?
 
Joined
Apr 26, 2009
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Just wondering if you really thought anyone here would tell you to go get a T2i? Posting in a Nikon forum?
And just wondering you thought was lacking in the D7000 at it's price Point? I don't think there's many people out there who wouldn't say that it's one of the best values out there?

Well I got the D7K again yesterday and will be testing it again alongside my old D300 to see the problems with autofocus that I had in my previous D7K have been addressed.

Oh, and I do agree it is a great value, provided there are no issues.
 

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