My first DSLR was a D40 and I found the image quality very good even with the 18-55mm kit lens. When I upgraded to the D90 I expected a big jump in image quality. I was sadly disappointed and actually thought the D40 produced a better picture. However the D40 is more of a beginners camera and a lot of processing in camera makes for a good picture. The D90 is a more advanced camera and needs some knowledge of the camera to get good results. A increase of sharpness to +5, a little more saturation and contrast and the use of a single focus point produces a sharper and better picture for me. It takes a little time to get used to the D90 but when you do you will be rewarded with some stunning images.