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Canon T4i vs Nikon D5100 vs Pentax K-30

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Pricing and Value

All three kits

So, which kit is the best value?  Here is the MAP pricing as of October, 2012.

18-55mm Kit
50mm F1.8 Lens
Total
Canon Rebel T4i $792.00 $92.00 $884.00
Nikon D5100 $596.95

$124.95 (D, no AF)

or

$216.95 (G w/AF)

$721.90

or

$814.90

Pentax K-30 $846.95 $249.95 $1096.90

Both Nikon setups are cheaper than those from the other manufacturers.  This makes sense, considering the fact that the camera is a whole year older.  The Pentax, being weather-sealed and targeted at slightly more advanced users, is a little bit more expensive than the Canon.  For Pentax users, it may be a better idea to get a used manual K or M 50mm F1.4 lens rather than the seemingly-overpriced DA 50mm 1.8.  Doing so will almost level the playing field in terms of pricing.  We believe that it may be worth paying a little bit more for Pentax's excellent backwards-compatibility.

Other Kit Options

Wet Pentax K-30

If you're looking for better image quality (or, in the case of the K-30, a weather-sealed zoom), the Canon and the Pentax are also available in kits with a 18-135mm lens for $1009 and $1147, respectively.  Dual 18-55mm and 50/55-200mm kits are available for both the Pentax and the Nikon.

 
Buy the K-30 vs T4i vs D5100