Nikon D90

I’ll level with you: I’ve had a tough time finishing this review.  I’m a strong proponent of fair, balanced and unbiased reviews.  I’ve been fortunate to have the opportunity to test a lot of great camera gear.  When people ask me about digital SLRs, I’m usually quick to point out that Canon, Nikon and Olympus all make great SLRs that I’d be pleased to have in my bag.  I suggest that they read the reviews, visit a local camera store, try a few out and decide for themselves.

To a photographer, a camera is a tool and there are undoubtedly other great tools that I haven’t had the opportunity to try. But it’s only fair, especially given what I have to say about this camera, to disclose the fact that my digital SLR and lenses are Nikon.

I expect to take a lot of heat over this review, but, as the saying goes, I call it as I see it:  The Nikon D90 is simply an awesome camera.  If you’re a beginner or advanced amateur looking for a digital SLR, buy the D90 and Nikon’s 18-200 VR lens and you won’t be disappointed.

The D90 offers a 12.9 megapixel DX-format CMOS sensor, a 3 in. LCD display, Live View, 720p video recording and a host of other features.  The CMOS sensor is from the same family as the D3 and D300 and in my tests produced great images.  Live View – real-time viewing on the LCD display – is a pleasant alternative to the viewfinder for some types of photography.  But what really elevates the D90 to the top of the pile is its video capability.


It’s important to keep in mind that the D90 is a consumer camera.  It is not built to withstand the rigors of professional use.  And it’s unlikely that pros are looking for video capability from their SLR.  But, for those of us who take our SLR when we head out with family and friends, the ability to flick a switch and go from shooting excellent quality stills to 1280 x 720 video at 24 fps is awesome.  I did find it a bit weird at first – holding my SLR and shooting video – but I quickly got used to being able to shoot video through my favourite Nikon lenses.

The D90 offers all the features we’re used to seeing from Nikon.  There’s a fully automatic mode for those new to photography as well as Nikon’s Program, Shutter Priority, Aperture Priority and Manual modes.  The LCD display is as good as it gets on SLRs and, of course, it supports both RAW and JPEG modes.

Overall, the D90 is a winner.  Whether you’re looking for your first digital SLR or you’re looking to upgrade, you owe it to yourself to check it out.

One Response to Nikon D90

  1. Danielle Donders
    Mar 05, 2009

    I covet this camera deeply. A Nikon DSLR with video? Be still my heart. Where’s that winning lottery ticket of mine?

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