I was like you and did alot of research. I bought the 3100 and the 3100 for Dummies to make sure I would learn all the uses of my camera. I had a SLR from the school I was teaching in so I knew some of the basics. The 3100 will be a challange to learn all I need and to save for the extra lenses I want to purchase. You can research forever or just go for something and start using it. The learning process is fun.