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Old October 30th, 2009, 09:04 PM   #1
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D90 vs t1i first slr

I am picking up my first slr and can't choose between the d90 and t1i. First of all stills are the most important. I have a canon hfs100 for videos but would like a vdslr to supplement it in some cases. To my knowledge the d90 has alot more photo features than the t1i. Video wise which cam has the better compression. I know that in the d90 it is mjpeg at about 10-25mbps bit rate. What about the t1i? What bit rate is it and I believe it is an h.264 compression. I definitely know that the d90 has more rolling shutter artifacts. Audio wise i know they are both crap. This will be my first dslr so I want to choose wisely. BTW (I'm no camera noob so don't treat me differently lol).
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Old October 30th, 2009, 09:37 PM   #2
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I chose the T1i mainly because I had other Canon EF and EF-S lenses, but also because the Canon processor chip seems to be the one others are compared to. Also it is reputed to be one of the least "noisy" chips used. In previous Canon digital Rebels I saw no real noticable "noise" and ISO 800 and could very easily live with the result at ISO 1600.

Once I had the T1i and started using it's video mode I discovered that I could intercut it's 720p footage very easily with HF100 footage shot in cine mode (with contrast, sharpness, and brightness set to "+" in custom preset on the menu to get away from the "flat" look) and it blends in very well. An example is either of the videos found in the T1i and DOF threads in this forum, the footage showing the T1i was done with the HF100 while the footage of the model was done with the T1i.

So I was a happy camper until the 7D was announced. I got one but elected to keep the T1i also.

If you are having good luck editing the AVCHD from the HF100, the H.264 in .MOV wrapper is less demanding of computer resources so that aspect should not cause you problems. I edit primarily in Pinnacle Studio 12.1 which does not support the 1080p mode from either the T1i or 7D.

My workaround for that is to import the 1080p files in another NLE and render to AVC H.264 which either NLE can then edit.
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Old October 30th, 2009, 10:40 PM   #3
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Thanks

I really really want the 7d but its out of my price range. I really want a good video tool but stills is the most important here. IF the t1i had manual controls (and a microphone input dare I say) in video i would totally jump on it even though its just 720. Why can't canon just do that. I wouldn't mind paying 200 bucks more for that. Or even if nikon did that. I have no problem dealing with avchd. I use final cut pro on an 8 core mac pro, and editing hdv is the same as avchd through an intermediate editing codec from apple. Honestly though the hfs100 is alot better at video than the t1i and the d90 more-so (d90 has unbelievable jiggle motion). The d90 is a superior slr. Do you know if you can use the full frame 35mm lenses on the d90. I know with canon (I'm normally a canon guy) that u can put ef and ef-s lenses like you stated, but I'm not sure about the nikon crop frame dslrs. Ha decisions, decisions decisions....
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Old October 31st, 2009, 03:07 PM   #4
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One thing to consider is that, although the D90 is a superior stills camera, if you one day want to upgrade to something like the 7D or the next Canon, then it'd probably make the most sense to get the T1i so that you'd have all the Canon glass and accessories. If you got the D90 you'd have to get Nikon glass and accessories.

I honestly don't know which makes better video. I have the D90, but have never used the T1i. I'd guess they're pretty similar, although the D90 might have better low-light.

EDIT: Also consider whether you want 24p or 30p video.
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Old November 1st, 2009, 06:00 PM   #5
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Thanks for the reply. How do you like the d90 as a still camera? I have a very old nikon 1.4 mf lens (with a manual aperture ring). Do you know that if I put the manual lens on the d90 that in d-movie mode it will allow me to record (thus allowing me to select my aperture manually.
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Old November 1st, 2009, 08:09 PM   #6
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As a stills camera? I think its fantastic and I haven't used up all its potential yet, but I'm not a professional photographer, just a hobbyist I guess you would say. Prosumer, or whatever the term is. I have a 50mm 1.8 and a 28mm 2.8 that I bought off eBay specifically for video so I could set aperture manually. The 28mm says E series on it and the 50mm says Nikkor (that tells you about how much I know about Nikon lenses haha). I don't know what type the are, exactly.

About your lenses - if they're like mine, I'm sure they'll work great (though you won't get any in-camera metering of course). I know there are some lenses that you have to do some trickery with to get them to function but I don't know what type.
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Old November 2nd, 2009, 08:32 AM   #7
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I have a T1i (500D) and a love it! Highly recommend it as a stills and video camera and probably the best stills or video camera you can buy for under 600 here in the UK. I do agree the D90 probably takes better photos (my friend has one) but from what Ive heard the T1i's video codec is better and I must admit when comparing footage from my T1i and my friends D90 I think mine is slightly better.

My only issue with it is no manual aperture control, but I get round that by using twist lens trick, you could also get a nikkon adaptor and use them on it.

I use a 50mm 1.8 lens on mine, works great, amazing in low light and have produced some nice looking images from it.

I wouldnt say the audio is crap on the T1i lol at least not for a consumer camera. Yes compared to pro cameras it is poor but for its price I dont think its that bad.

If I was you I would go for the T1i mainly because of the codec and the better choice of upgrade in the future (5D or 7D)

Heres a video I made using the camera, also used a Sony Z5 to record the sound, EXT and over head shots.

YouTube - Grow Up! - Creating the 60 second school garden

p.s its abit shaky as I used a 50mm lens and no support. It was a bit of a last minute idea to use the camera as the lighting in the room wasnt that great making the Z5 look grainy. The guy taking 5 takes to get it right didnt help either lol.
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