Most equipment is more than good enough

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Most specifications for cameras do not matter that much

Everyone loves reading reviews, and it is true, some equipment is definitely better than others, no question about that. But I claim it is not that important

The test

My first Nikon DSLR

Here I took two pictures using once with the cheapest equipment I have and once with the most expensive equipment. Note that these are both hand held, and I did not spend time to make the pictures look exactly the same (I took 3 to 5 pictures on each). More or less this is what you get when you try to make a similar picture. It is a bit challenging, the light in the office was pretty bad and the difference in the pictures is more the tone due to the camera settings (see also postprocessing) rather than the quality of what I used.

To be fair both pictures are shot with aperture f/5.6 and both lenses have builtin vibration reduction.

Here are the main differences:

I selected one picture each that I liked and show here in two versions. Once cropped to 2048 pixels wide, that would look fine when you were to print it on a A4 paper, and once a 1000 pixel wide region from the picture around the head of Bianca the Bear where the focus was, so you can see individual pixels. If you want to see the pictures fully and see the EXIF information click on the images to go to their page.

Head to head.jpg


The expensive one

D850 scale.jpg

D850 crop.jpg

The cheap one

D90 scale.jpg

D90 crop.jpg


Let me say this clearly, both the camera and the lens on the expensive option are without any doubt much better than its cheaper counterparts.

The Nikon D90 has a warmer setting on the camera (both have Vivid, but one is more Vivid than the other) and sort of the exposure on the picture from the Nikon D90 is better. Also I ended being a bit closer with the Nikon D90, the equivalent Focal length in 35mm is 127mm instead of 105mm.

Personally I like both pictures, and it would be possible to tune the settings so that they look equally warm. They have the resolution to be printed on a high quality A3 print (the pictures you see are scaled down). Obviously the Nikon D850 has a higher resolution, but maybe you thought 45 Megapixels would make more of a difference.

In short, most equipment you can buy today will do the job without problems for 99% of the situations. Of course the higher quality equipment will show itself in extreme situations, you will have more pixels, more sensitivity, better sharpness, less distortion.. but you will also realize better equipment does not make you a better photographer, something I had to learn everytime I bought a newer and better camera or lens.

These pages are for Amateur Photographers and not really for seasoned photographers and professionals. I have no affiliation or commercial interest with any brand/make. I write from my own experience. I ended up using mainly Nikon, so I am more familiar with this brand than others. See price for notes on pricing as well as photography related links.