Have decided to not buy the D90 based on DPReview's review

Started Oct 14, 2008 | Discussions thread
anotherMike Forum Pro • Posts: 10,144
Re: The reality...

Oh - I totally agree with you. The D80/D200 class of DSLR in my mind hit the sweet spot where the camera was likely better than the user - in terms of most users not being able to extract everything possible out of the body and also in terms of those bodies were able to provide a technically competent user with clearly-better-than-film image quality (again, assuming user ability was there). Now sure - there always is something better - if you think about it, 35mm film shooters always knew something was better and it was clearly evident. You didn't compare your 35mm chromes against a 6x7 Mamiya chrome or against a 4x5" piece of sheet film sitting on a lightbox - yet we used 35mm, got great shots out of it, because it was a portability/quality tradeoff that many of us liked. Properly done digital in terms of DSLR gives us, assuming the user attains a near expert level of craft, medium-format like film quality in a 35mm sized camera body - how is that not a huge plus? I'm happy as h*ll being able to get MF quality out of a DSLR - it's what I've been looking for all my photographic life. Yet I still know that a guy who is shooting 8x10" film on an old Deardorff is gonna blow me away image quality wise just as a guy with a 50+mp MF digital back is.

The presence of internet forums and the consumerism culture does make us all want the latest and greatest, but often the gains of the latest/greatest are minor. If you're chasing a certain technical goal maybe it's worth it - those of us who are serious hobbyists, semi-pro's or professionals might want to go that way while the average user might be quite happy with a D80 or D90 instead of D300's and D700's. At some point each of us needs to draw a line in the sand in terms of the bodies and say "you know, this does the job and I'm good" and then either quite the acquisition train, or invest in better glass, training, workshops, etc, because most of the latter will make more of a difference in the end result than going from, say, a D80 to a D90 body. But at times, as you've noted, it's the ergonomics and the feautres that enable you to take better images - and the user interaction with the camera is FAR more important than which of two similar camera bodies tests better with a rez chart on dpreview.

-m

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