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Old Nov 5, 2008, 10:57 AM   #21
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Changinmg lenses is not a big deal. And all entry level dSLRs have scene modes, one of which is Sports, which works well for equestrian events, until you get the hang of it and can customize it for yourself.

See myhttps://www.photoshop.com/express/in...ackingid=BTAGC

I use continuous, or burst, mode to capture shots during an entire proformance. I get 3 fps, but sometimes wish I could get faster. I shoot Dressage mostly, so I can get by with a fast 70-210 telephoto zoom, but for jumping, or if you can't get close, you'd probably need something longer.

For indoor stuff you won't find a zoom lens fast enough for you to use fast shutter speeds, so you'll use a high ISO setting. This was taken in the most brightly lit indoor riding arena I've ever seen, with my 135mm f/2.8 telephoto lens, and I still couldn't get a shutter speed faster than 1/60".

For that, you should go with a Canon dSLR. Canon's have the best high ISO performance, and the best autofocus system. The entry levelCanon XSi should do nicely.
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Old Nov 5, 2008, 12:47 PM   #22
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Here's a camera that takes photos 60 frames per second (that's fast).

It can also take 7 frames per second with flash:


The lens goes from 34-432mm to you can take pictures from here to the end of the paddock.

Does movies too.

You can buy it here for $1000:


-- Terry
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Old Nov 5, 2008, 12:53 PM   #23
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Lazydacres wrote:
...I would really like to keep it under $800 if at all possible.


...I am selling the horses, hopefully via the pictures on the website.
I'd consider increasing your budget if the pictures help to sell the horses, judging by the prices I see for them. The cost per sale to have better quality images may pay for the camera pretty fast, depending on sales volume, profit margin, etc.

I'd consider moving to the next market niche up in camera body and lenses. For example, I'd probably look at models like the Canon EOS-40D, 50D; Nikon D90, D300; and Sony A700. All of these models can go to ISO 3200 (or higher except for the 40D). The Nikon D90, D300 and Sony A700 all use a Sony 12MP CMOS Sensor. The Canon models use CMOS Sensors manufactured by Canon.

For web size images from lower light venues, I'd probably get the Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8 EX HSM Macro II (available in multiple camera mounts for around $799), or the camera manufacturer's equivalent lens if budget permits.

When downsized for web viewing at the sizes you're using, any noise (or loss of detail from noise reduction) won't be as noticeable. Ditto for any softness due to motion blur (won't be as noticeable at smaller print or viewing sizes). But you'll still want to bump up your ISO speeds enough for relatively fast shutter speeds for best results in lower light settings, and the models in the next market niche up tend to do a better job at their higher ISO speed settings).

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Old Nov 5, 2008, 1:09 PM   #24
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Here is my honest advice. You have a BUSINESS need - photos to sell horses. Like any other advertising / marketing the quality of the photos will drive the success. The SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT factor in getting those quality photos is a knowledgable photographer.

So, here's the advice. You will not achieve your business goal with a point-and-shoot mentality. Notice, I am not saying point-and-shoot CAMERA. What I'm saying is you have to recognize your business need requires a skillset to solve. You can go one of two ways:

1. Attain the skillset yourself

2. Hire the skillset

I have a professional camera and professional lenses. I could hand them to you and you're still not going to create images to sell your horses. Because even the best cameras on the market are not powerful black-box solutions. So, if you don't have the desire or time to learn photography then it's a sound business solution to HIRE a photographer. It really is not unlike web design. A poorly constructed website can do your company more harm than good.

Right now it sounds like you expect a camera to create images that will sell your horses. There isn't a camera on the market that can do that. You have a marketing need. The camera is the least part in the equation.
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Old Nov 5, 2008, 1:28 PM   #25
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Here is a link to another point and shoot that's within your budget:


It's the successor to the other Casio that was recommended to you. Not so many FPS, but still a lot (40fps at 7 megapixels)

However, I think that the DSLR's that John recommended will give you better image quality, especially in low light.

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Old Nov 5, 2008, 2:23 PM   #26
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Or, if that $800 budget is firm... consider a factory reconditioned Nikon D50 for around $399. Most of these tend to be very lightly used. Just make sure you're buying from an authorized dealer (since Nikon USA will refuse to service a gray market camera).

Here's an example of one from a reputable vendor:


Then, buy a used Nikkor 80-200mm f/2.8 to go with it for around the same price as the body. Here's an example:

Nikkor 80-200mm f/2.8 Macro ED AF lens w/hood and caps for $415 at keh.com

You can find more in the $400's and up. Older non-D versions sell for less. Newer D versions sell for more. Condition and items included (hood, caps, case) also impact pricing.

Used Nikkor Autofocus Zoom Lenses at keh.com

The D50 only goes to ISO 1600, and it's AF system isn't going to be the greatest using an older lens design like that. Because of ISO speed limitations, your shutter speeds may be a bit slow in many lower light venues. You'd need to practice your panning and timing to get a higher percentage of keepers and take lots and lots of photos in bursts with that kind of setup.

Or, as JohnG pointed out, consider using the services of a professional photographer that has the equipment and skills to get better results.

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Old Nov 5, 2008, 3:06 PM   #27
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Per JimC's suggestion of going used, I'd go with a used Canon XTi from Adorama ($420) and a used Canon 70-200mm f/4.0 from KEH ($525). (Yeah, I know. It's a little over $800.)

You won't be able to shoot indoors, but your outdoor shots will be top-notch.
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Old Nov 20, 2008, 2:47 PM   #28
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Thanks everybody for the replies. Checking some of the suggestions out on Ebay now, and keeping my eyes open!
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