So you’re wanting to buy a camera?

I have to state from the beginning that this blog entry started as a tweet I sent out this morning. A person that I have met through YouTube, who I consider a friend, was tweeting about Canon vs Nikon. I put my 2 cents in, but with Twitter you are limited in what you can post, and since I do 99.9% of my tweeting from my iPhone……I didn’t get enough of what I wanted to say in. So, here goes…..

Before we get started I want to school you readers on the proper pronunciation of Nikon. I’m American and I grew up calling it “nigh con”, as I’m sure all of you do. The actual pronunciation is “Knee Cone”. I know, it took me years being over here and hearing it all the time before I could say that without gagging. But there it is. Nikon is a Japanese company so we really should pronounce it the way they do. Let me also state that from this point forward, this will be mostly my opinion, peppered here and there with a few facts, so take it for what it’s worth. Oh, and I’m pointing this at the entry level photographer so I’m talking entry level cameras, but a lot of the stuff still applies.

Ok, so you’re wanting to get a camera but you’re not sure if you want a Canon or a Nikon. Well, I hope I can help you in your decision. I feel that Canon cameras have been geared towards Joe Consumer. A high grade camera that just about anyone can pick up and get high quality photos out of it. Now, that is not to say that Canon cameras are sub par, or only for people that have just lost their tail and stopped dragging their knuckles, not at all, Canon makes a very high quality camera that is perfect for the professional photographer. Their lenses are top notch and extremely advanced. The only problem I have with Canon is that not all lenses work with all bodies. With that said, though, they have such a wide variety of lenses that it really shouldn’t be an issue. If your level of photography requires you to buy that one special lens that won’t fit on a Rebel series, then you probably don’t have a Rebel to begin with, or it’s used as your point and shoot. It should also be noted that Canon cameras will accept Nikon lenses. Nikon can not say the same.

Nikon cameras, in my opinion, have always been more geared towards the people that want to learn the camera. Over the past 25-30 years or so they’ve been forced to compete with Canon and have moved into the user friendly zone, yet, even today, if you really look at the cameras side by side, you’ll see that even though they’ve moved into the “user friendly” zone, they have retained that “You’re not getting off that easy” feel to them. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. All of the main controls on a Nikon can be accessed via buttons positioned around the body whereas Canon forces you to go digging through menus. If you’ve moved away from the “I have this camera to take pictures at 4th of July BBQ’s” and have stepped up into the realm of “I’d like to learn more about photography,” then it can be a bit tedious having to hit menu buttons to adjust your ISO or F stop. Nikon has you covered there.

There are so many things that can be discussed about cameras but I’m going to bring this to an end here. Why? Mainly because I’m running out of time, but also because this is intended for those that are just getting into photography. Let’s face it, at this point the biggest thing to worry about are the bodies and lenses. There are enough features on both cameras to keep you busy, and impressed, for quite a while.

So, what is my opinion? Well, to be honest, both cameras have their ups and downs. I can’t sit here and say that one is better the other, because they’re both great cameras. All I can do is tell you what I prefer. I am a Canon man through and through. I started with an EOS 10 back in the early 90’s and then moved to an EOS 5. Film has basically come to an end so I sold all of that. My current camera is the entry level Rebel series. It’s called the KISS x3 here in Japan. Personally, it does everything that I need it to do. I’d like to move up to a 5 or 7D in the future but for now, this suits my needs. My point and shoot is a Canon and my video camera is also a Canon.

What you decide to buy is your personal decision. Again, both are fantastic cameras and will give you years and years of joy…..and headaches.

Y’all come back, I’ll leave the light on for ya.




ex-pat American living in Japan since 1991. Love to play guitar and billiards. Love my Cincinnati Bengals too. Who-Dey!!
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