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  1. #11
    Elite Member /pine's Avatar
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    Default Re: DSLR camera recommendations

    You might benefit from some reading on photography forums...not to demean TBNers...but I would research where professional photographers post their opinions...
    Slash Pine
    blunt and succinct but sincere...in the immortal words of Popeye..."I yam what I yam"

  2. #12
    Veteran Member Tollster's Avatar
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    Default Re: DSLR camera recommendations

    I sell locally and have been taking photos since 89. I am kin to Nikon as well, mostly because the lenses I used on my 35MM back in 89 still work on my DSLR today. The Nikon bayonet mount has been around for a long time, although the metering has changed somewhat over the years, however, the newer DSLR's took that into account and has settings that will work with glass going back to the 50's. So buying lenses on ebay is not out of the question, good glass will cost as much as the camera body.
    Canon lenses have changed over the years, and their auto focus motor is also in the lense which is why they do not carry over, not sure how far back you can use the same glass with the newer bodies though.
    None the less, its something you have to keep in mind.I shoot the 2/3rds frame D300 now, but all my full frame glass from my F-5 fits, and metering is the same.
    Image quality is about the same.
    You can get good user feedback at the nikoncafe.com
    I think there are some sections that pertain to specific models there. I belong to the site and have found it the most informative Nikon site, with some very knowledgeable folks there...they are also friendly without the ego.
    Good Luck
    Kubota BX-23, BH, FEL, MMM, Various Bro-tek attachments, Exmark Lazermark.
    ASME Certified welding inspector specializing in Visual, Mag Particle, Dye Penetrant, and Ultrasonics

  3. #13
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    Default Re: DSLR camera recommendations

    Quote Originally Posted by dmccarty View Post
    What does the wifey want to do with the camera?
    Dan,
    Thanks, you gave some good advice. We've had a number of point and shoots which have mainly been Canon's. Our latest is actually a Casio Exilim 14.1 megapixel with a 10x optical zoom. It actually takes great pictures, especially in low light, and has some great "scenes" that simplify photo taking. I buy most of my optics from Doug at CameraLand New York, including scopes, bino's, camcorders and cameras. He's been great at giving advice and had some recommendations on the latest. What's always good about the TBN croud is you get advice in laymans terms, not all the technical jargon.

    The wife's looking to upgrade her photo taking skills on our travels. She'll be in Hawaii on business for a few weeks at the end of January, we also have a trip to Italy planned for late spring and maybe a trip to New Zealand in 2014, so most of the photos are outdoors of sights, scenery and wildlife.

    I understand on the pricing. I'm looking at a mid-entry level body. I'll need to look at the 4/3 cameras, hadn't heard of them before.
    I plan to screech to a sideways stop at heavens gate, jump out with a cigar in one hand, a scotch in the other, yelling "WOOHOO!! WHAT A RIDE!!!"

  4. #14
    Elite Member houstonscott's Avatar
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  5. #15
    Super Member grsthegreat's Avatar
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    Default Re: DSLR camera recommendations

    I went with the Canon EOS 50D myself. I didnt bother with the package deals out there, cause the packages lenses typically suck.

    My camera body was the cheapest part of the deal. My lenses are F2.8 IS USM motion stabilized lenses. My largest 70-200 F2.8 lens cost nearly 3 times what the camera body cost. but the images are amazing.

    Heres a picture from about 100-120 feet away with the 70-200 lens. I mean you can read the tag number on the horse. a moving horse. I just LOVE this camera.-_mg_3593-jpg
    currently own
    2011 Kioti DK45SE HST CAB tractor/loader, Jimna 6" - 3 point wood chipper, 60" JD Brush Hog, JD 60" Rototiller, 3 point post hole digger with hydraulic assist, 3 point spring tooth rake, Fimco 55 gallon weed sprayer with 12 foot boom, 3 point hydraulic wood splitter (home built)
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  6. #16
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    Default Re: DSLR camera recommendations

    My son has a Canon T3i. It takes excellent pictures with the consumer grade lenses that he has - 18-55, 55-250, and 50mm. A much much better camera than the original Rebel, and we are talking maybe $800 for the camera and all these lenses. This might be a good starting point as opposed to the very expensive full frame cameras. Does a fine job at high ISOs, something Canon is known for.
    Alan L., TX
    South of Bugtussle
    North of Mustang
    On the banks of Buck Creek
    We don't rent pigs.

  7. #17
    Super Member
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    Default Re: DSLR camera recommendations

    You'd like the trips my friend and instructor does. We went on her Alaska trip in '01.
    Betty Sederquist

    There's links in there for classes and equipment.

    The kayaker at the top of the page is me. the picture made it in to the 2002 Deager kayak catalog. I had never kayaked before!
    Dolphin Charters Trip 2001

    FWIW, I would look in to local photography classes and clubs. Maybe get a nice used body.

    I believe the lenses can be more important than the body. You can put a good lens in front of a cheap body and get good photos. But, you can put a cheap lens on a really good body, and only get mediocre pictures at best. Good glass, and big apertures(ie 2.8's)

    On our Alaska trip, my 80-200/2.8 was the workhorse. Some lighting conditions required that fast aperture.

    Quote Originally Posted by gsganzer View Post
    The wife's looking to upgrade her photo taking skills on our travels. She'll be in Hawaii on business for a few weeks at the end of January, we also have a trip to Italy planned for late spring and maybe a trip to New Zealand in 2014, so most of the photos are outdoors of sights, scenery and wildlife.

    I understand on the pricing. I'm looking at a mid-entry level body. I'll need to look at the 4/3 cameras, hadn't heard of them before.
    RobertN in Shingle Springs Calif

  8. #18
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    Default Re: DSLR camera recommendations

    Quote Originally Posted by gsganzer View Post
    ..
    The wife's looking to upgrade her photo taking skills on our travels. She'll be in Hawaii on business for a few weeks at the end of January, we also have a trip to Italy planned for late spring and maybe a trip to New Zealand in 2014, so most of the photos are outdoors of sights, scenery and wildlife.

    I understand on the pricing. I'm looking at a mid-entry level body. I'll need to look at the 4/3 cameras, hadn't heard of them before.
    Since she is trying to upgrade her photo skills, think seriously of buying a used camera. I am lucky in that there are still a couple of camera stores locally, well, 30-60 minutes drive local , and I would buy used equipment from them. That is saying something because I do NOT like buying used anything. I try to stay behind the technology curve as much as possible but with camera equipment, Nikon keeps figuring ways to get money out of my pocket. However, inexpensive DSLRs can do things that were simply not possible in the film days...

    By buying used you reduce your costs and it won't be painful if the camera is not used or if later she decides to buy a more expensive camera. The key thing with used cameras is the shutter count aka how many photos have been taken. The D700 shutter is rated for 150,000 photos and I had taken over 20,000. There was quite a bit of life left in the camera but the D800 had a couple of features I really really really wanted/needed so I traded up. Besides the shutter count, the problems to look for in a used camera are pretty much visible. Does the LCD have hot spots? Are there bad/hot pixels when taking a photo? Is the body in good condition? The camera store can tell you the shutter count and the camera might tell you somewhere in the menu system. On the latest Nikon's I have owned the shutter count can be found in the photo data.

    There are two types of lenses today that she needs to know about. There are lenses designed to work on the APS film sized sensors, or as Nikon calls them, DX sized sensors. Then there are lenses for the full frame aka 35mm sized sensors aka FX in Nikon language. Old 35mm lenses will work on both FX and DX DSLRs. DX lenses can be problematic on FX DSLRs. My guess is that more and more DSLRs are going to move to full frame/FX as the sensor technology gets cheaper.

    The DX vs FX sensor size is important not only because of the different lens types out there but also because the same lens works a bit differently on the different sensors. I have three prime lenses, a 24mm/F2.8, 50mm/F1.4, and a 105mm/F2.8. I would suggest getting a 24mm and 50mm lens to go with the camera. These lenses are very good for walking around type photography and landscapes, they provide danged good image quality and they are very inexpensive lenses. However, using those lenses on a DX camera gives a field of view of a 35mm, 75mm, and 150mm. I use the 24mm and 50mm lenses quite often and especially when travelling because they are small, light and I can carry the two lenses with a camera holster bag.

    Wildlife photography is a different critter, pun intended. To get quality images you have to fill up the camera frame which usually requires a long lens and/or the ability to get close to the animal(s). It ain't easy. I have been renting a 300mm/F4.0 lens to use with a teleconverter to get a 420mm/F5.6 lens. This is sorta hand hold able. Sorta. For awhile. That is a small and light lens compared to a 300mm/F2.8 or 400mm/F2.8 lens much less the 500mm and 600mm lenses. These other lenses are much heavier and require excellent tripods and tripod heads which are very expensive.

    I got a series of images with the 300mm/F4.0 and a 1.4 teleconverter last spring. I stood still, moving very little, for six hours to get a series of Osprey photos. The camera was setup on a tripod with a remote shutter release. Patience was a requirement.

    -_esc9246_92-jpg

    The other extreme from wildlife photography is closeup photography which is why I have the 105mm lens. With a macro/micro lens there are quite a few images that people simply do not see because the subjects are small. Macro/Micro photography will require a remote shutter release and a decent tripod though. But it opens up a very large number of photo opportunities that are all over the place. It ain't easy getting photos of birds that move around. Flowers don't move that much unless it is windy.

    A great place to learn photography, get reviews and advice is Photography community, including forums, reviews, and galleries from Photo.net. The website was one of the first websites on the web. It is ancient in Internet Time and has very active forum areas. The general photography information is very good as well. There are other sites out there but this is the best all around photo website I have found. The site can be a bit slow though. Digital Photography Review is another decent site. There is a guy name Ken Rockwell who has a site which I would use carefully. If looking for just specifications on equipment he is fine but he is a bit of an odd ball. The Hogan site I linked previously is much better for hands on reviews though it is mostly Nikon based.

    Later,
    Dan

  9. #19
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    Default Re: DSLR camera recommendations

    The wife jumped "all in" and got a smoking deal on a Nikon D5100 . We were playing around with it last night and it's pretty impressive. It'd take me years to ever figure out what all it can do.
    I plan to screech to a sideways stop at heavens gate, jump out with a cigar in one hand, a scotch in the other, yelling "WOOHOO!! WHAT A RIDE!!!"

  10. #20
    Veteran Member Tollster's Avatar
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    Default Re: DSLR camera recommendations

    Quote Originally Posted by gsganzer View Post
    The wife jumped "all in" and got a smoking deal on a Nikon D5100 . We were playing around with it last night and it's pretty impressive. It'd take me years to ever figure out what all it can do.
    I am sure its a camera she can grow with and she'll be happy, now its lenses, software, tripods, remote shutter release, flash, filters, polarizers, back packs, and so on..... did I say Printer? I met to add that...congratulations, ya did good!
    Kubota BX-23, BH, FEL, MMM, Various Bro-tek attachments, Exmark Lazermark.
    ASME Certified welding inspector specializing in Visual, Mag Particle, Dye Penetrant, and Ultrasonics

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