Upgrade from Nikon D3100

Started 3 weeks ago | Questions thread
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OnlyHorwood New Member • Posts: 3
Upgrade from Nikon D3100

Hey all!

I am new to the DP community and am looking for some advice from some with more experience than myself. I have been shooting on a Nikon D3100 since 2013 but, have started doing more serious photography in the past two-ish years. I fear I have reached the limit as to what my camera can do for me and am looking into upgrading it.

I primarily do nature, landscape, street, and some animal/portrait photography with a 35mm f1.8 Nikkor prime, 19-35mm f3.5 Tameron (cheap manual wide angle), and 55-200mm f4 Nikkor as my telephoto. Occasionally I still pull out the kit lens but only on rare occasions.

Lately I have been moving into larger landscapes and astro-photography and this is one area I am seeing my cameras age. I have incredible noise at just 400-800 ISO so I have been stacking/merging low ISO images but, this is time consuming and doesn't always produce the results I want. I find I will get 'soft' images in a lot of normal situations as well. I think a boost in sensor quality and available megapixels would be beneficial in these scenarios.

I have also been shooting more portraits and some paid work and have noticed that the auto focus on the D3100 is very slow when it matters and jumps around a proper focal point, forcing me to manually set focus a lot of the time.

I also would benefit from more button and dial controls. When shooting on my Canon A-1 or Olympus OM-1, I can keep looking through the viewfinder and set change my settings accordingly and quickly without looking at what I am doing. When I use my Nikon, I need to move it away from my face and use the d-pad for a lot of the changes which is slow and can be cumbersome even if you know where every setting is (and having shot on this body for 6ish years I know it like the back of my hand).

So, I have been looking into a D7500 as I already have a small collection of DX lenses and jumping to full-frame would be much more expensive than getting an updated crop sensor. Would this be a good move? Living in a small town in New Brunswick, Canada means I don't have access to a lens/camera rental facility to try out new kit so I am relying on your expertise and knowledge.

Thanks in advance for any and all help!

edit: I post some of my work to my Instagram - @horwoood if anyone is curious about what a D3100 can still do today. I can post higher quality samples if requested.

 OnlyHorwood's gear list:OnlyHorwood's gear list
Nikon D3100 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 55-200mm f/4-5.6G VR Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 35mm F1.8G +3 more
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Nikon D3100 Nikon D7500
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