Expert Recommendation

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Best Digital SLR Camera for Interior Photos Under $1000
Expert (53 Recommendations and 31 Compliments)
Send a ComplimentComplimented (Change)
November 23, 2009 Updated: November 24, 2009
Overview

When the goal is to get good, clear interior shots, dealing with tricky light and shadows can be a nightmare. So can composition, Live View aids this problem tremendously. That’s why the Nikon D90 is my Best in Class pick. Add a wide angle lens and you can be sure to capture every nook and cranny with ease.

Best badge
My Best In Class Pick
Nikon D90 (Body Only)

The Nikon D90, with Live View, a 12.3mp imaging sensor and Expeed processor, has all the tools you need for capturing difficult, low light situations indoors. Add a Nikkor wide angle lens to make sure you get all the angles.

Setting up a shot with Live View makes getting the composition right an easy task, and when the exposure gets tricky, simply use the D-Lighting or Picture Control mode for help managing contrast and tone. When working with really difficult lighting, the D90 offers an ISO that can go as high as Hi 1 (ISO 6400 equivalent) or as low as Lo 1 (ISO 100 equivalent). For group shots, use Face Priority mode to recognize up to 5 faces

Viewing your still images or HD video is simple too because of the 3”, 920,000 dot LCD screen, allowing you to make quick decisions and adjustments.

If you plan on projecting your still images right away on your HD TV using an HDMI connector, you can first perform in-camera editing using Distortion Control to adjust lens aberrations or the Straightening function to get the right angles right.

Comparison with Canon EOS 50D (Body Only)

If saving a little money and getting HD video is important to you, then losing a little on the imaging sensor and ISO capability shouldn’t make you stray from Nikon when choosing a camera for your interior shots.

Comparison with Pentax K-7 (Body Only)

Solidly built but a bit pricier than the D90, the K-7 is a good choice too, especially if you already have Pentax lenses.

Pros
  • +
    Bright LCD
  • +
    D-Lighting
  • +
    Wide ISO choices
Nikon D90 (Body Only) is the Best Digital SLR Camera for Interior Photos Under $1000
Where to buy
Nikon D90 (Body Only)
  • Best Price: $899
    Amazon See It »
Recommended with
  • Nikon 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5G ED AF-S DX Nikkor Lens for Nikon Digital SLR Cameras
    $899.95 @ Amazon.com
Specifications
  • Resolution: 12.3MP
More
Want More Opinions? See:
Website Reviews (3 reviews)
  • Highly Recommended at DPReview.com
  • Dave's Pick at Imaging-Resource.com
  • Rated Excellent by CNET.com

Comparing My Best In Class Pick with Other Good Choices

Product
Best badge
Nikon D90 (Body Only)
2
Canon EOS 50D (Body Only)
3
Pentax K-7 (Body Only)
Customer Rating
Price $899.95 $1249.00 $1099.99
Body Material Plastic Magnesium Alloy Magnesium Alloy
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Sensor Type
CMOS CMOS CMOS
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Effective Sensor Resolution
12.3 megapixels 15.1 megapixels 14.6 megapixels
Anti-Dust Available Yes Yes Yes
Max Shooting Speed (continuous) 4.5 frames/sec 6.3 frames/sec 1.6 frames/sec
Video Available Yes No Yes
HD Video Available Yes No Yes
Max ISO Setting 6400 12800 3200
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LCD Screen Size
3.0 in. 3.0 in. 3.0 in.
LCD Screen Resolution 921600 pixels 920000 pixels 921000 pixels
Storage Media SD Memory Card, SDHC Memory Card CompactFlash Card SD Memory Card, SDHC Memory Card
Battery Type Proprietary Lithium Ion Rechargeable Proprietary Lithium Ion Rechargeable Proprietary Lithium Ion Rechargeable
Weight (with batteries) 24.8 oz 29.0 oz 26.5 oz
Weatherproof No No Yes
Anti-Dust Technology Low-pass Filter Vibration Low-pass Filter Vibration Low-pass Filter Vibration, Anti-stick Coating, Dust Alert
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Image Stabilization Available
Yes Yes Yes
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Face Detection Available
Yes Yes Yes
2
Canon EOS 50D (Body Only)

Offering enhanced speed and image quality, the Canon 50D is a robust DSLR that will capture your interior shots at a whopping 15 Mega Pixels. Strap on the Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM Lens and take in the whole scene while letting the Digic 4 processer figure out the correct exposures.

Set up your shots using the Live View mode and compose with ease using the 3.0” Clear View VGA LCD and three different Auto Focus settings. Choose from any of the Picture Style pre-set modes to make sure you get the exposure just the way you want it. If natural light is what you’re shooting for, crank the ISO sensitivity up to 12800 without breaking the bank on specialized lenses.

Built around a sturdy Magnesium alloy body, the 50D uses an intuitive design to make operating the controls right at hand so you don’t have to spend valuable time scrolling through menus. And every time you fire up the 50D, the EOS Integrated Cleaning System shakes the dust off the sensor so your images are ready to go with a minimum of editing.

And if you have a need for speed, the 50D shoots a rapid 6.3fps, in bursts of up to 90 JPEGs with a UDMA card.

Comparison with Pentax K-7 (Body Only)

Since these two cameras are so closely matched, I would only consider one over the other due to accesories you may have from each manufacturer. If you’re not yet true to either, you might be able to decide based on whether or not you prefer video in your DSLR.

Pros
  • +
    Digic 4
  • +
    High ISO
  • +
    Ease of use
  • +
    Very fast fps
Cons
  • -
    No video
Canon EOS 50D (Body Only) is one of the Best Digital SLR Cameras for Interior Photos Under $1000
Where to buy
Canon EOS 50D (Body Only)
  • Best Price: $1249
    Amazon See It »
Recommended with
  • Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM SLR Lens for EOS Digital SLRs
    $713.76 @ Amazon.com
  • Lexar Media Professional Series UDMA 8GB Compact Flash 300x
    $179.00 @ Amazon.com
Specifications
  • Resolution: 15.1MP
More
Want More Opinions? See:
Website Reviews (2 reviews)
  • Highly Recommended at DPReview.com
  • Dave's Pick at Imaging-Resource.com
3
Pentax K-7 (Body Only)

Small but sturdy, the Pentax K-7 has a durable, high-quality metallic body wrapped around a 14.6mp CMOS sensor powered by the most recent version of the PRIME (PENTAX Real Image Engine) II processor.

Use the Live View function with a 3”, 921,000 dot LCD screen to compose your interior shots or capture still images at a speedy 5.2fps in real time, or set it up to shoot 720p HD video at 30fps. Either way, with the Pentax SAFOX VIII+ wide-frame autofocus system and the choice of new or older (meaning every lens ever made for Pentax) lenses, your images will be crisp and clear.

Put the The K-7’s Custom Image function to work for you to release your inner creative genius, or take even more control with the Hyper Manual setting and create your own boundaries.

However you choose to take advantage of the K-7’s many intelligent functions, you will discover what thousands of Pentax users have known for years, and why they keep coming back to these solid workhorses for their artistic inspiration.

Pros
  • +
    Weatherproof body
  • +
    Fast
  • +
    Lots of lens choices
Pentax K-7 (Body Only) is one of the Best Digital SLR Cameras for Interior Photos Under $1000
Where to buy
Pentax K-7 (Body Only)
  • Best Price: $1099
    Amazon See It »
Recommended with
  • PENTAX DA 10-17mm f/3.5-4.5 ED (IF) Fish-Eye Lens for Pentax Digital SLR
    $519.95 @ Amazon.com
Specifications
  • Resolution: 14.6MP
More
Want More Opinions? See:
Website Reviews (2 reviews)
  • Highly Recommended at DPReview.com
  • Dave's Pick at Imaging-Resource.com

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