I've been a professional photographer since the late 1970s.
My work appears in magazines,newspapers,ad campaigns and I shoot about 15,000 rights managed stock images a year.I still love what I do,even though business wise,things are rapidly changing.
I started my film days with Nikon cameras and evolved into digital with the Nikon D100 in 2001. Most of my staff and partners were Canon users and I made the switch it just made it more economical for us to swap lenses instead of buying new gear so frequently.
My most recent Canon camera and what lead me to switch was the Canon 7D. I wanted to love that camera but I found that two different bodies I purchased had issues with focus problems. In video moving objects would be fine but in stills,focus was not always quick or accurate,even with the pricey 'L' series lenses and focus was more frequently off. I was also not pleased with the color in incandescent light..It never looked very good,even when shooting RAW.
I went to a photographer friends studio and they have a multi million dollar a year business shooting upscale society weddings. My friend was at the computers going thru a wedding shoot that he did with another photographer that was shooting with the Canon 7D. During he edit process,he had to discard an uncanny amount of his 2nd shooters Canon images due to focus problems. They were shooting side by side and his computer room had two monitors with the shoots synced side by side. The Nikon files blew away the Canon as far as sharp and accurate focus as well as color. All of the Canon images that were in focus had to have post processing while the images shot with the Nikon D300s needed little if any and most were keepers.
I knew then it was time to switch back to Nikon.
I picked up a Nikon D300s from Ritz and they do have a helpful sales person in my area. They also knocked alot off my receipt since I also purchased the SB-900 flash,Nikon 35mm 1.8mm,
80-200mm 2.8 VR II lens.
I had my first shoot before I even read the manual for the camera.I did have to look up the chapter on using the flash units remotely but to be able to work this in a manner of minutes made this camera a joy to use. Granted I've been at this a long time but many people that would consider this camera or switching cameras would intuitively know what the buttons are for and understand the menu options.
The battery life is good and you can buy a name brand battery for about $15 at any store that would have these.I bought extra Energizer Lithium Ion.
For the Canon 7D you can't buy an off brand battery since it has a computer chip in it and a spare battery will cost you close to $100.00
I've purchased several other lenses,all VR II as well as Tamron and Tokina highly rated lenses.
I shot a concert and didn't balk at going up to ISO 1200 though I prefer to stay under 800 if I can.
I've had about 30 photo shoots since then and my editing time and post processing is 1/3 of what it was with the Canon. I know with my Nikon D300s the images will be crisp and color will be good.
I have not had experience with the video mode on this. Personally I like to keep stills and video separate. To download a card in a hurry that has a video is going to slow down your workflow.
Both camera systems probably weigh around the same.The Nikon flash system is more advanced than Canon and I personally like the quality of the Nikon lenses better than I did Canon.
One quirk is I have to get use to mounting my lenses clockwise instead of counter clockwise.
For great photos,it's worth the relearning of old habits. I love the Nikon D300s.
Below are some specs from the Nikon site at:
12.3-megapixel DX-format CMOS Image Sensor
Delivers stunning high resolution, low-noise images with striking detail and tonal gradation.
Nikon EXPEED Image Processing
Drives breathtakingly rich image fidelity, low noise and fast image processing.
One-button Live View
Hand-held and Tripod Live View Modes, activated with one-button, for challenging studio and remote shooting conditions.
Low Noise ISO Sensitivity from 200 to 3200
Additional expanded ISO settings of Lo-1 (ISO 100 equivalent) and Hi-1 (ISO 6400 equivalent) extend versatility to match shooting requirements.
1,005-Pixel 3D Color Matrix Metering II
Nikon’s unique RGB metering—the only sensor that also evaluates color information when determining exposures with remarkable accuracy..
Dual memory card slots (CF and SD)
Assign card functions from a variety of storage options, optimizing available memory and file handling.
Picture Control Settings
Select from 4 preset image capture preferences (Standard, Neutral, Vivid and Monochrome, plus 9 user customizable settings) controlling Sharpening, Contrast, Brightness, Saturation and Hue.
In-Camera Image Editing
Exclusive in-camera image editing, featuring Edit movie, D-Lighting, Image Overlay, Monochrome, NEF (RAW) processing and more.
100% Viewfinder Accuracy
Up to 950 shots per EN-EL3e battery charge*
Shoot as many as 2,950 shots with the body’s EN-EL3e battery installed and the optional MB-D10 Multi-Power Battery Pack with an EN-EL4a Rechargeable Li-ion Battery*.
* based on CIPA standards/guidelines.
Continuous Shooting up to 7 fps
High speed shooting and fast response—essential to versatile performance in a wide variety of shooting disciplines.
D-Movie HD Video
Capture striking 24 fps, 720p HD movie clips, enhanced by NIKKOR interchangeable lens quality and versatility—featuring external stereo Mic input and AF operation.
3-inch Super-density 921,000-dot VGA LCD Monitor
Every monitor is factory-calibrated to assure accurate color for critical still image review and Live View or D-Movie shooting.
Fast, Accurate 51-point Autofocus
Features 4 Dynamic AF modes including 3D Focus Tracking for precise autofocus and razor sharp images.
Scene Recognition System
Referencing an onboard image database and teamed with RGB metering, SRS enables even more sophisticated determination of exposures and auto white balance, along with faster, more accurate autofocus.
Dynamic Integrated Dust Reduction System
Ultrasonic process combats the accumulation of dust in front of the image sensor, safeguarding image quality.
Nikon's Active D-Lighting
Optimizes shadow and highlight detail in real time—Selectable values and 5-frame ADL bracketing offer complete control.
Rugged and Durable
The strength and precision of magnesium-alloy construction with advanced dust and moisture countermeasures is teamed with a shutter mechanism tested to beyond 150,000 cycles for real-world reliability.
Virtual Horizon Graphic Indicator
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Amount Paid (US$): 1400.00
This Camera is a Good Choice if You Want Something... Solid Enough for a Professional