Canon vs. Nikon?
As a photographer it is one of the questions I get asked most frequently. In fact I would be willing to bet that nearly every photographer out there has been asked this great question at one time or another. It is a debate that has been waged now for years and years, and to this day there is no definitive answer. Just so that we are on the same page I have no intention of answering this question because I in fact am not so sure that there is a definitive answer out there, what I do mean to do is to go through the most important features of the Canon and Nikon offerings from the entry level DSLR to their flagship models and attempt to find a lean, a slight nod at the answer that so many have sought after.
Should someone ask you on the street what type of camera do you own, the likely answer will either Canon or Nikon, and that goes for a large portion of photographers out there, especially professional photographers. Sony has in fact made a push to market their line of DSLR and while they do offer some very impressive specs, and considering this is all about Canon and Nikon, we will leave them out of the equation for now.
At every level of DSLR both Canon and Nikon, entry level through professional and flagship models, Canon and Nikon in fact are innovating and crafting their lines with one eye on the other’s work. They might tell you till they’re blue in the fact that this, in fact, is not the case but when you work around their products for years you begin to see that outside of a few aesthetic differences and a nicely painted “Canon” or “Nikon” on the bow of the camera, they are in fact nearly the same product. Well not necessarily the same, but they are brothers or sisters, whichever you prefer.
Aesthetics aside the internal make-up, the camera’s fortitude in both the Canon and Nikon offerings are quite similar, and always have been. Take the Canon 5D Mark III and the Nikon D800. Both were released within months of the other and boast a price tag north of $3000 USD. Both are full frame, both have state of the art auto-focusing systems, both have more megapixels than you could ever imagine needing, and both are extremely versatile in low light situations. I know, I know I am making it seem very general when speaking about these two cameras, when in fact they are quite different. Well yes and no. Should you need more megapixels, yes the Nikon D800’s impressive 36.2 Megapixels is better than the Canon 5D Mark III’s 22.1 Megapixels, but for most photographer’s that extra amount of megapixels will never be missed. The same logic can be applied to most boastings from both the Canon and Nikon crowds.
Lenses, & Other Camera Gear
This will be a quick one, and I do mean quick. Both the Canon and Nikon offerings in lenses from the lower end “plasticky lenses” to the L Lenses and Nikkor Lenses that boast several thousand dollar pricetages, are fantastic lenses and are developed and manufactured with such care that it would be hard to say which is definitively better. They are both amazing, and we will leave it at that.
A while back I heard the best analogy for this debate that brought it into perfect perspective for me. This Canon vs. Nikon Debate is almost a mirror image of the Coke vs. Pepsi debate. Ostensibly Coke and Pepsi are the same product, they both offer a product with very similar tastes but with minor changes both to the actual soda and to their packaging, but at the end of the day they taste quite similar. It is merely a personal preference whether you like Coke or Pepsi better and the same can be said for Canon and Nikon products. They are in fact the same product save for a few minor and subtle variations to the formula.