I have the opportunity to get a new Nikon D3300 package with 18-55 and 55-200 lenses. I checked with dragon frame and they said it is compatible. I had read on their website the 3000 was not so I phoned them.

Anyone using this camera and have any thoughts on it? It isnon sale for $599 then I can stack 2 additional 10% discounts on that brining it down to around $485. Is this a good deal? The hope is to use ot for animation and photographs on vacation etc.

Thanks for any suggestions/input.

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Looked at the Nikon at DP Review.  Looks like a good, compact SLR for taking on vacation, with a compact 18-55mm kit lens.  Prices shown there range from $446.95 with the one lens, and $596 with 18-55mm and 55 - 200mm lens.  So with discounts, you seem to be getting a good price.   http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/nikon-d3300  

From the Dragonframe site, instructions for using the D3300 with Dragonframe:  http://www.dragonframe.com/cameras/nikon_d3300.html

Compatible with current v3.6, but not with older v3.0 .  Like other Nikons, the Live View has fewer pixels than the Canons, at 640 x 424.  

For stop motion, I would get a couple of older manual lenses with an aperture control on the lens itself.  Kit lenses don't have that.   When I used a Nikon (The older D70, before Live View came in) I partly unscrewed the lens so the iris would not open up between frames (and cause flicker).  That also means the camera does not control the lens, so everything stays the way you set it.

I would also buy an AC power adapter so the camera can run on mains power, since it can take a few hours to do a stop motion shot.   You can get cheap generic ones, if the genuine one is more than you can afford.

Great information Nick, thank you. With this in mind, would you advise that a canon t5 might be a better pick? They also have a canon SL1 but I was unfamiliar with it. This would be.my first foray into the better dslr camera as in the past I was using my mini dv camcorder through stopmotionpro. The T5 (not t5i) also comes with both lenses.

I prefer Nikons as cameras to hold in the hand and take still photos- I like where the controls are, they seem more designed for photographers.  I kept using the D70 for stills, until it stopped recognising the memory card and I was forced to take the Canon with me.  Deleting photos is easier on the Nikon - hit the trashcan button once, then a second time to confirm.  On the Canon, you hit the trashcan, then you have to use another control to slide over from "No, I didn't mean it" to "Yes, I really want to delete", then a 3rd button to actually delete.  Ok for a few photos, and ok if you want to Delete All, there's a menu item for that.  But a pain if you want to delete 300 frames of timelapse cloud that didn't work out, but still want to keep a few photos on the card.   Petty, but it irritates me.  But plenty of photographers are fine with Canons and how they work, and wouldn't use anything else.  

For stop motion, I was influenced by the Caliri Bros (Developers of Dragonframe)  who used a Nikon and Canon with Live View, side by side, on a commercial shoot.  The Nikon would shut itself off every so often, to prevent overheating.  The Canon kept going.  I honestly don't know if this is an issue any more, that was 5 or 6 years ago.   My Canon will switch off if I leave it too long without taking a shot, but one click in DF re-starts it and all settings are still there.  It won't switch off just because I keep animating for 8 hours at a stretch.

The other thing is the live view resolution on screen, I want the biggest and sharpest possible to see the really small moves I make when easing in.   My Canon 7d has a resolution of 1056 x 704. (Even bigger would be ok too.)  I did ok with a lower res spycam on my old Nikon D70 looking through the viewfinder, so it's not that major, but sharper is better.

The live view resolution on the Canon T5 is also 1056 x 704.  The T5i seems to be a bit lower, so not all models are the same.

It feels slightly more secure using my Nikon lenses with an adapter on the Canon - they click into place - than using them partly unscrewed on the Nikon body, but they don't need to be unscrewed much, and there is no danger of them coming loose.  It's not like you are running around outdoors, and turning the focus or aperture all the time and in any danger of moving it when you are animating.  So in practice it was not an issue for me.

Neither brand would be a bad choice.  I chose a Canon for animation.  If I was giving up animation and wanted one purely for taking stills, I might go back to Nikon, but for a dual purpose camera it's really hard to say.

Nick once again , thank you for your input.  I greatly appreciate your time and information.

I guess tomorrow will tell the tale, but now I am leaning back toward the T5. 

I was shocked to see the inflated "retail" price of the store I was looking at of $999 for the Nikon D3300, even with 2 lenses the difference to other retailers is vast.

Thanks again.



StopmoNick said:

I prefer Nikons as cameras to hold in the hand and take still photos- I like where the controls are, they seem more designed for photographers.  I kept using the D70 for stills, until it stopped recognising the memory card and I was forced to take the Canon with me.  Deleting photos is easier on the Nikon - hit the trashcan button once, then a second time to confirm.  On the Canon, you hit the trashcan, then you have to use another control to slide over from "No, I didn't mean it" to "Yes, I really want to delete", then a 3rd button to actually delete.  Ok for a few photos, and ok if you want to Delete All, there's a menu item for that.  But a pain if you want to delete 300 frames of timelapse cloud that didn't work out, but still want to keep a few photos on the card.   Petty, but it irritates me.  But plenty of photographers are fine with Canons and how they work, and wouldn't use anything else.  

For stop motion, I was influenced by the Caliri Bros (Developers of Dragonframe)  who used a Nikon and Canon with Live View, side by side, on a commercial shoot.  The Nikon would shut itself off every so often, to prevent overheating.  The Canon kept going.  I honestly don't know if this is an issue any more, that was 5 or 6 years ago.   My Canon will switch off if I leave it too long without taking a shot, but one click in DF re-starts it and all settings are still there.  It won't switch off just because I keep animating for 8 hours at a stretch.

The other thing is the live view resolution on screen, I want the biggest and sharpest possible to see the really small moves I make when easing in.   My Canon 7d has a resolution of 1056 x 704. (Even bigger would be ok too.)  I did ok with a lower res spycam on my old Nikon D70 looking through the viewfinder, so it's not that major, but sharper is better.

The live view resolution on the Canon T5 is also 1056 x 704.  The T5i seems to be a bit lower, so not all models are the same.

It feels slightly more secure using my Nikon lenses with an adapter on the Canon - they click into place - than using them partly unscrewed on the Nikon body, but they don't need to be unscrewed much, and there is no danger of them coming loose.  It's not like you are running around outdoors, and turning the focus or aperture all the time and in any danger of moving it when you are animating.  So in practice it was not an issue for me.

Neither brand would be a bad choice.  I chose a Canon for animation.  If I was giving up animation and wanted one purely for taking stills, I might go back to Nikon, but for a dual purpose camera it's really hard to say.

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