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Can the New Nikon D3000 Outperform the Canon Rebel XSi

Updated on September 15, 2014

Two and a half years - that's a long time in camera years. The legendary Nikon D40 held the honor as Nikon's best, most inexpensive DSLR for that long. Now it's time for the D3000 to duke it out with the Canon Rebel XSi to see if it has the same durability.

Nikon's D40 has been a truly great performer in the photography market. Its rise to the top of the market in the cheap DSLR market is due to the value that buyers felt they got when buying. It truly was a wonderful camera for beginning DSLR buyers. You can still get a D40, but they are no longer being manufactured, so the supply will run out before too long.

The Nikon D3000 has now been released, and it is already making its presence known in the camera market. There have been major upgrades from the D40, most notably from a 6.1 megapixel sensor in the D40 to 10.2 megapixels in the D3000. There have also been technology upgrades in the LCD, the image processing engine, and auto focus modes. Overall, cameras are getting "smarter" with each release. So it is becoming easier to take flawless photos when selecting the right scene mode. At the time of this article, the user rating at is perfect. Not one reviewer has listed a negative about their new D3000.

Nikon D3000 takes on the Canon Rebel XSi

Nikon D3000
Nikon D3000

Canon's direct competition to the D3000 is the Canon Digital Rebel XSi (aka 450D). They have very similar specifications and features, but the Rebel XSi has been on the market for a year and a half already.

Here is an interesting observation. Canon and Nikon have gone head to head for as long as digital cameras have been around. Both companies came out with sub-$1000 DSLR cameras at almost exactly the same time. Both companies have similar cameras at every level in the DSLR market. There is not a clear winner at any level between Canon and Nikon. The winner is whoever the camera buyer deems to be the winner. If the buyer is a Nikon buyer, normally they will stick with Nikon, and vise versa for Canon. A few photographers have crossed the line one way or the other, but it is fairly uncommon.

So, today, if you are buying a DSLR for the first time, which one do you choose?
The writer was in this very predicament when the D40 and the Canon Rebel 300D came out. Ready to buy the first DSLR. Read all the forum posts. Got confused by the Canon-Nikon mud slinging and name calling (I read the forum posts now just for amusement).

Which One Did He Choose?

Yours truly came down on the Canon side back then. Now, with the same decision, considering the Nikon D3000 and the Canon Rebel XSi 450D, the decision would be in favor of Nikon... for only one reason. It is not because I have been dissatisfied with my Canon gear.. not at all. The decision would be based solely on the age of the cameras; the Nikon is newer and actually costs a few dollars less. But either one will be excellent choices. And either one will give you awesome pictures. And both will be replaced by newer models in the very near future.

Go ahead and read the forum posts. But be prepared to be spammed by some very adamant fans of either Canon or Nikon. It's kind of like going to a football game in the New York Giants stadium if they are playing the Jets. It will be difficult to get an unbiased opinion because they are cross-town rivals.

Reviews of the Nikon D3000 and the Canon Rebel XSi are abundant on the Internet. Make sure you check several before making your final choice. (But I will tell you that there is no wrong choice here - they are both great cameras.)

The "New" Generation


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    • profile image

      Mahbub Alam 6 years ago

      This is very useful.

    • thewayeyeseeit profile image

      thewayeyeseeit 7 years ago from Woodstock, GA

      Harry, you are right about the D3000 getting its pants kicked by Canon, but the D3100 seems to be holding its own. Lots more of what beginning DSLR users are looking for.

      thanks for stopping by.

    • Harry Santos profile image

      Harry Santos 7 years ago from Metro Manila, Philippines

      I don't know why Nikon has been releasing such crappy cameras. And they're totally beaten by Canon when it comes to video.