Nikon D750 First Light

And so it came to pass; after 39 years of using only Canon (D)SLR cameras I’ve gone over to the black and gold. Yes, I got my first Nikon DSLR this week. A Christmas/birthday present, received early so I can learn to use it properly before an upcoming trip.

tl;dr: switched from Canon to Nikon for reasons of performance and cost.

First, the photos, then the story.

Two photos below show the performance of the D750. Due to learning the new controls (Everything is backwards! Dials turn opposite, things that screw tighten the opposite direction; the zoom is opposite …) I way underexposed Smoky in the cat tree. But just look at the recovered results!

Christmas Cactus
Christmas Cactus
Smoky - way under-exposed
Smoky – way under-exposed
Smoky - exposure corrected in Lightroom
Smoky – exposure corrected in Lightroom
Smoky
Smoky
Oh Christmas Tree
Oh Christmas Tree
Baby - our can't touch, but can feed, homeless cat
Baby – our can’t touch, but can feed, homeless cat
Kansas Sunset
Kansas Sunset

So, how did I end up with a Nikon?

It went like this.

My Canon 5D Mark II is 6 years old, and the model itself is 10 years old.

In this life, I’m never going to spend the money that a camera such as the Mark II costs when first released.

But I got the Mark II as it was nearing end-of-life, with appropriate pricing, and I have loved it!

But time moves on. And what’s available now? Having pondered and rejected the mirrorless camera trend, that means: what DSLRs are available?

The 2 year old Canon 5D Mark IV comes to mind. At the best price, (including all the recent holiday sales) it was hundreds more than I paid for the Mark II. And after long and careful analysis, it just didn’t work for me.

Then I came across the Canon 6D Mark II, a fairly new camera. On paper, this was the one, and the price was right! I was really excited.

But then, I read the review that called it the Worst Camera of 2017.

Oh no.

But that can’t be right; it can’t be that bad, can it?

Further reviews indicated that in fact, it is that bad.

Sigh.

No new camera.

But then.

And I don’t recall how, but I managed to come across the Nikon D750. An entry-level, full-frame DSLR.

It had great features and given the fact it’s a 4 year old model, I was able to get the camera AND lens* for the same price as my Canon 5D Mark II.

Given my Canon lens investment, that helped soften the financial blow of switching quite a bit. (Selling off at least some of the Canon kit will also help 😉

And if the camera lives up to its reviews, I shall be very happy. The low light performance is claimed to be amazing. Based on my initial results, I think I agree.

One of the main features of this camera compared to all the Canons in question (5D Mk II/IV, 6D II), is a greater dynamic range. This shows up when one has to brighten the shadows as shown in the image of Smoky above.

Here’s to many more great photos!

*I got the kit lens, a 24-120 f/4 lens very similar to my Canon 24-105. It’s overpriced as a standalone lens, but less than half that when included in the kit. Per the reviews, it’s a great general purpose lens, and as my 24-105 hardly ever comes off of my Canon, I expect the same here.

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