So what's better about the D3100? Seriously? Just about everything. Starting with a 14.2 MP sensor, then introducing the first Nikon with 1080p video, auto-focus in Live View, boosted ISO, (to 12800!) and then to finish it off with a fancy new processor, the EXPEED2, and even more editing capabilities, including movie editing.
If you're like me, you are probably thinking to yourself, "man, I should have waited for this guy to come out..." So what is the point of even having a D90 anymore, other than the fact that you don't have enough money to upgrade? Well, personally, I like several features which kinda even out the playing field. 1) That nice info screen on top... Sure, it takes some getting used too if you came from a D40, 60, 3000, or 5000, but we all love that screen. It is immensely useful. 2) The little drive motor on the front. Seriously, this opens up auto-focus on how many more lenses? Life for me would be miserable if I didn't have auto-focus on my 50mm... and 3) the D90 isn't targeted for new parents looking for a vacation toy. Remember, you own perhaps the defining camera in photography history, the first SLR to have video, not to mention perhaps the best collection of camera components for under a thousand dollars.
So don't feel too bad about it... If one of your friends starts bragging about his/her new D3100, and how it is so much better than your dinky D90, just remind them about that second screen, the battery grip, those couple hundred lenses that you have auto-focus on, all those little features that separate a professional from the amateur. You don't have to worry about going extinct for another month... (The Photokina event coming up... Rumor says the D95, the replacement for the D90 is supposed to be replaced... Don't worry though, you still own one of the best cameras in town, regardless of price.)
So while all the action and coverage has been going to the cameras, with some amazing compact replacements, (check out the projector camera replacement... the S1100pj - http://www.dpreview.com/news/1008/10081709nikons1100pjs5100.asp) many people have been overlooking some of the new lenses Nikon released... Here they are, in a real quick list:
- 85mm f/1.4G prime lens
- 24-120mm F4G ED VR zoom lens
- 55-300mm F4.5-5.6 G ED VR telephoto zoom
- 28-300mm F3.5-5.6 G ED VR ultra-zoom
(all of these except the 55-300 are full-frame for those of you with anything D700 and above)
The lens y'all can get excited about is that 55-300 VR... If you are like me, you might have skipped the predecessor to this lens, the 70-300, and gotten the 55-200 instead, so you wouldn't lose the 55-70 range... Well, now you can have just two lenses, the 18-55 and 55-300. With all the latest technology, SWM, ED, VR II, all that, Nikon was able to top everything, and include a little something they call HRI, or High Refractive Index. This helps in harsh lighting environments, and I am sure it is well worth the money. Speaking of money, does anyone know what the price is for this one? Probably around $450. That's cheaper than the old 70-300!
So that's a little update on how the latest Nikon releases affect the D90... I'll most likely do a post on how the D95 is better, worse and the same as the D90... As much as it seems you are behind the curve, and you feel like the D90 is outdated, don't feel that way. It still produces excellent pictures, it has everything any photographer could ask for, and you shouldn't even begin to think about replacing it until you hit at least 75,000 shots... :P