I met Dan and his brand new Canon 5D Mark III in downtown St. Petersburg for my first 1-on-1 DSLR photography lesson on a weekday evening in awhile. As you can see things got dark, but that allowed for some cool lighting effects by zooming in while pressing the shutter. The Canon 5D Mark III is a professional level camera (it does not even have a built in popup flash), so I was surprised to learn it was Dan's first ever DSLR of any kind! He went right to the top after using point and shoot digital cameras previously. I like the all in attitude!
No matter what DSLR a student comes to me with, the teaching process is the same. Likewise, once you learn one DSLR, you can pretty much pick up any other DSLR and shoot in manual mode (well, at least within the same brand fairly easily). After explaining to Dan how aperture, shutter speed and ISO work together to produce a good exposure we walked along Beach Drive and with the fading light got to test the super high ISO ability of his Canon. We even used ISO 25,600 for a few very low light moving subject shots where the shutter speed needs to be 1/500th. I was impressed.