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Want to upgrade from D3100. Really confused!

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First timer here. Have a D3100 bought in 2012. Used heavily while learning a ton. Took tons of sports photos of son who is now out of school so sports aren't the most important now (as long as I had bright light, photos were pretty good but not great). Now we are traveling and I want to take awesome landscape/nature/tourist shots. I have a budget of $1,000. Looking at the D5500/56 or D7200/75 or similar. I have no interest in going pro on any level. Just want to take amazing pics with what I've learned. What would you all recommend?


Also, whatever I go with, what zoom lens would you recommend. Some come with the 70-300mm zoom but it's not VR. I'm pretty shaky. I tried the massive zoom lens once and it was so heavy I had to send it back. The 55-200mm and 55-300mm lenses I have with the D3100 are junk. Grainy and terrible with low light. Really want to improve on low light pictures!


Thank you!!!





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Welcome to the forum.

Based on how you introduced the subject, I would go for a lightweight still capable body. Therefore I would favour for you a D5600 over a D7500 (the later being more than 50% heavier, but offer a better ergonomic design for advanced use (if you mostly work in the manual mode))

You might also compare the D5600 to a Z50 (mirrorless), but pay attention that if you go either way, the lens mount type is different and thereby lenses you will look at.

As regards lenses the 18-140/3.5-5.6 might be a good starting point - and you may often get it as a kit with the D5600.
You might add a 35/1.8 or 50/1.8 prime lens in a second phase.

Overall, for better low light you will check (on the lens) for larger possible apertures (the figures behind the slash shall be smaller) and (on the camera) for good ISO capabilities (the value shall be larger).