And the winner is…..the Sony A700. We are incredibly grateful for everyone’s input and advice. We were at the edge ready to make the leap to Canon or Nikon, but couldn’t do it just yet. I’ve grown too attached to my nifty fifty (Minolta 50mm F1.4) and adored twenty four (Minolta 24mm F2.8). Plus, it still irks me that Canon and Nikon didn’t build image stabilization into their bodies. If it irks me now and I don’t even own either brand, I’m certain it would drive me nuts to pay a premium for their stabilized lenses.

In any event if you’re out shopping for a camera, the Canon 40D is a really solid choice. I wouldn’t even bother looking at the Canon 90D; it’s missing some things that make the 40D a better choice. If money is no option (and you don’t want full-frame) then the Nikon 300D is your baby of choice. It outperforms the Sony A700 and Canon 40D on nearly every point (at least on paper).

Now, if you’re willing to take a leap of faith—the Sony A700 easily competes in this range. Plus, image stabilization is in the camera so old Minolta lenses work great on it. Minolta made solid glass in its day and Sony has paired with Carl Zeiss to continue in that spirit. My only concern about the Sony A700 is that it’s not weather/splash proof, and that’s most likely what brought an end to my Minolta 7D. A little bit of moisture can do a lot of damage, and we’ve been stuck in more than one rainstorm on this trip.

We took our new camera out for a spin yesterday. We need to make a few adjustments and get online to the user forums, but otherwise we’re pretty happy. The pics posted are my two favorite from the day, taken at the flower market in Honk Kong.

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