The camera market is very bloated now since there are tons of manufacturers delivering excellent models year after year and the competition has been very fierce. This has been very beneficial for buyers since there are more options than ever and prices are very competitive. However, two brands have been at the top of the market for a long time now, while they have faced fierce competition, they have been nothing but solid and excellent in delivering amazing cameras, Nikon and Canon. While Canon has been delivering better models in the mid-range and high-end markets, Nikon has been slightly in front of the entry-level market.
However, in recent years Canon has caught up Nikon in the entry-level market and wants to establish itself as the best camera manufacturer for the entry-level DSLR market, and Nikon has answered with some amazing models. As a matter of fact, we know, that who dominates the entry-level DSLR market, will eventually have the best overall sales, since most of the first-time camera buyers, will likely continue with the same brand of camera that they have started with.
Today we are going to talk about two excellent entry-level DSLR cameras from Nikon and Canon, both excellently priced, are compatible with a wide range of lenses, and can deliver excellent image quality, the Nikon D3400, and Canon T7i. Both of these cameras replace excellent models and have very large shoes to fill. Let me introduce you to our cameras.
The Nikon D3400 is an excellent entry-level digital single-lens reflex camera that was released in August 2016. It is an excellent camera that is capable of taking amazing images and it is worth mentioning that this is one of the most lightweight DSLR cameras in the market. It is also very cheap to buy and thanks to its wide range of lenses available for its F Mount, the lenses are very cheap as well.
On the other hand, we have the Canon T7i, also an entry-level digital single-lens reflex camera that was released several months later than its competitor in February 2017. It is a very capable camera, that has a competitive price, and is equipped with a powerful sensor. It is pretty fast as well and is the best option for those that want to dive into Canon’s amazing camera eco-system.
Without further ado, let’s dive deeper into these cameras.
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Head To Head Comparison
As I mentioned earlier in this comparison, Nikon has been dominating the entry-level market for DSLR cameras for a long time, and it has stuck with the same winning formula throughout the years. This formula has been creating a good camera with easy to use features, amazing controls, and just bare-bones DSLR experience that delivers amazing photographs. If you want to kick-start your photography hobby, Nikon is there for you to provide one of the best camera lineups.
Returning to the top, the Nikon D3400 is one of the best beginner cameras in the market, since it is very small and compact, has a wide range of lenses available, and is very easy to use. It has a great set of controls that will teach you the elementary skills of photography, like exposure, autofocus, ISO levels, and a lot more. To top that off it has an amazing sensor that is one of the most reliable, has great battery life and overall it is one of the cheapest choices in the market.
The Nikon D3400 is one of the most compact and lightweight cameras in the market as it weighs just 445 grams with the memory card and battery installed and it has small dimensions, as it measures 124x98x76mm in total. However, there is still a deep handgrip that is very ergonomic, despite its tiny measurements, it delivers plenty of balance, and thanks to its thumb grip in the back your camera will be secure at all times. One-handed operation is possible, as well. The construction of this camera is great as well for its price, rocking a polycarbonate construction, while it is not the first-hand choice for premium cameras it is solid for the beginner market.
Like I mentioned earlier, the Nikon D3400’s controls are very good, since they have intuitive placement and are easy to use, but there are not a lot of them, which limits the creative freedom. The optical viewfinder of this camera covers about 95% of the scene, and on the rear you will find a 3-inch LCD with a resolution of 921K, delivering plenty of sharpness, however, it doesn’t touch capacitive and neither tiltable.
This camera uses a pretty simple bare-bones, 11-point autofocus system, with just one cross-type point, but it works rather well. It delivered plenty of speed and precision, especially on still subjects, which made this camera a great one for portrait and landscape photography. However, it wasn’t as capable fo shooting moving subjects, and it struggled while doing so, but then again it is a beginner-focused camera, and for that purpose it is amazing.
In the sensor department, this camera is excellent as it uses the company’s 24.2MP APS-C CMOS sensor, which has proven itself through the years. IT delivers plenty of sharpness and it is one of the most versatile sensors in the market. It has an ISO range that spans from 100 to 25,600, and it delivered amazing results up to 6,400 ISO, but it couldn’t handle the noise higher up.
Despite being pretty cheap, in burst shooting mode the Nikon D3400 can shoot 5 frames per second, and it delivered great metering and white balance performance. It is worth mentioning its amazing battery life of 1,200 shots, which is one of the best, and it will deliver you plenty of all-day shooting opportunities without a spare battery.
Nikon D3400 Sample Images:
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On the bottom of the entry-level market, Canon has not developed a large number of cameras or interesting models, since it has focused on the upper range of the entry-level market, manufacturing interesting models with useful features, and better-shooting prowess. They are a little more expensive, but if you can afford the price, they allow you to grow and progress your skills without outgrowing the camera.
The Canon T7i is the perfect example, from the upper range of the entry-level market. Canon has delivered great cameras in its Rebel series and this one has been the best of them, coming with its compatibility for a wide range of lenses, amazing sensor, capable image processor, sophisticated autofocus performance, and overall it is one of the most fun cameras to learn to shoot with. If you can afford it, it will be one of the wisest investments.
The Canon T7i has a pretty interesting and sweet classic DSLR design that is very aesthetically pleasing. This camera is also pretty light, tipping the scales at 532grams, while it is heavier than its competitor it is still pretty good. It has a matte plastic exterior that feels a little cheap, however, it has a pretty nice construction, made out of a combination of aluminum alloy and polycarbonate, which deliver plenty of durability for its price. On top of that, this camera has a deep handgrip that is one of the most comfortable in the market, and on the rear side, you will find a large thumb grip.
Compared to the Nikon D3400, this Canon Rebel offers a wide range of controls, that is not excessive, however, they are pretty good delivering plenty of creative freedom, while still not overwhelming you, and just like all the cameras in the EOS lineup, they had a similar layout. On the rear of the camera, you will find a 3-inch vari-angle touchscreen display, with a resolution of 1040k, delivering plenty of sharpness and tons of brightness. The pentamirror optical viewfinder design delivers 95% of the scene and it is great, despite not being a pentaprism one.
This is where the Canon T7i differentiates itself from its competitor, with its sophisticated autofocus system using 45 cross-type autofocus points, delivering plenty of speed and accuracy while doing so. It is also pretty sensitive down to -3EV, making it possible to shoot and focus in very dark scenes, and there are plenty of modes available to aid you in your tasks. The phase-detect system worked very well, even with a kit lens, and it is a metering sensor that delivered an awesome performance.
In terms of image quality, the Canon T7i uses approximately the same 24MP APS-CMOS image sensor, which delivers plenty of sharpness, and it is redesigned to deliver better performance. But what makes this camera excellent is its amazing brand new DIGIC 7 image processor delivers amazing sharpness and great performance in high ISO levels, eliminating the noise excellently. It is worth mentioning that it has an ISO range that spans from 100 to 25,600.
In terms of performance and speed, this camera can shoot 6 frames per second in burst shooting mode, thanks to its new image processor, and it delivered great autofocus while doing so. In the battery life department, it lacked a little, delivering just 600 shots per charge, half of its competitor.
If you decide to go with this camera, you should check out our Canon Eos Rebel T7 lens recommendations.
Canon T7I Sample Images:
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Nikon D3400 vs Canon T7I Feature Comparison
|Nikon D3400||Canon T7I|
|AF Points||11 AF Points||45 AF Points|
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Writing these comparisons and deciding a winner is always pretty difficult, but in this instance, we have a pretty easy task. One of our cameras is superior compared to the other one, the Canon T7i.
The Canon T7i is the outright winner today, as it delivers a perfect balance for beginner photographers, with its controls image quality, and tons of interesting features. However, it has a higher asking price. But if you can afford it, it is an excellent choice. But if you want the cheapest option, opt for the Nikon D3400, which also delivers plenty for its price.
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