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Old Jul 26, 2005, 3:37 AM   #1
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I've owned digital cameras now for quite a large number of years, regularly upgrading to the next best model and selling the previous one for next to nothing, finally got up to a Minolta A1 and thought that was it, they won't get any better, enter the DSLR models, they're now affordable so home i come with an Oly E300, what do you want a large one like that for says my wife, because its better than my curent one says i, then as usual off to buy another battery, then a larger case, of course another memory card, oh, and a longer lens and a tripod. My previous cameras were light, could get them out of the bag and take a photo extremely quickly, now i carry a very large bag with all the bits and pieces, see an opportunity and takes minutes to get myself organised meanwhile my wife slipped hers out of her pocket and took a few photos while i'm undoing my camera bag, by the time i've taken my photo my wife is now out of sight and getting impatient. We're about to go away on holiday, my former cameras slipped easily into my flight bag, now my camera case is as big as my flight bag and as heavy, I've no doubt we'll get an arkward flight check in girl who'll give me some hassle over only one bag allowed or its to heavy for the overhead locker and then when we ger where we're going it'll be to hot or cumbersome to carry this lot about with me. I'm perfectly happy with my E300, i feel it takes excellent photos but do i really want all this hassle whenever i go anywhere. Should i simply return to a good non DSLR. Anyone else feel like me or should i just persevere?
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Old Jul 26, 2005, 1:20 PM   #2
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Thanks for the moral support TD, I had thought of getting another (camera, that is not wife), but she'd soon suss me out, quite fancy the Oly 8080 and at least the spare battery and memory cards would be compatible and save me some money as well, but I think I'll just have to adnmit to my wife that she was right and I would get fed up carting all this kit around, think I'll take her out for a meal and drop the subtle hint.
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Old Jul 26, 2005, 2:07 PM   #3
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I'll tell you a different story.

Like everyone before the 1990's, I shot film...mostly point and shoots in those days but occasionally with 35mm SLRs.

When the first of the digitals appeared, I got one. It was the Sony Mavica FD-7 which was 640x480 with a 10x zoom and saved files on completely zero-cost floppies (of which I had hundreds laying around). The film cameras were put aside.

Over the next couple of years, I bought new cameras as each resolution milestone was reached...I started with VGA (640x480) then progressed to XGA (1024x768)...then 1Mp...2Mp... and now I'm up to 7Mp.

But that wasn't an uninterrupted progression. Something happened.

I started to post my 2Mp shots on a web page for family and friends to see. Nothing fancy and 2Mp was much bigger than the majority of monitors could handle so all the shots were reduced in size. However, an aunt sent me an old photograph and asked if I would scan it and post it for the family since this was the only copy of the only picture of this particular relative. Since I was on a roll, I scanned a few more old snapshots and posted them as well.

The reaction was amazing. I started getting emails asking if I had bought ANOTHER new camera!. The 'new ' shots (the scanned ones) were 'so much clearer'. I looked and I had to say that it was true. The scan of old snapshot prints (NOT scans of negatives of transparencies) DID look better...with more detail and more 'depth'.

What happened was that I went out and bought a film camera...an old Yashica 35mm SLR which happened to come with a Zeiss 50mm lens. It was manual focus, manual film advance...and yet the pictures made up for everything else.

I either gave away or sold off ALL of my digital cameras (they were gathering dust anyway) and went back to film 100%. I kept using Zeiss lenses and made sure that all the film cameras I ownhave them. So, I have Contax SLRs, rangefinder, point and shoot...a score of Zeiss lenses.

It was not until recently, when resolution exceeded 7Mp, that I bought a digital camera again...but I am NOT getting rid of my film cameras. I figure they can co-exist in my bag since each has strengths that the other lacks.

Looking at the range of styles and the quality of the film cameras that I own, I could never be able to duplicate that degree of choice in digital. I just couldn't afford it...and this is a person who is used to paying Contax/Zeiss prices. I could never afford 4 dSLR bodies and 20 lenses. How much would a digital equivalent to a Contax G2 rangefinder cost...if there was one? And, the digital point and shoots are primitive compared to something like the Contax T3...which is so fast that no digital can come close to it in performance.

I am not knocking or being anti-digital. I own and use digital...but I'm not going to turn my back on the most affordable photographic technology available since it gets the job done...for 1/4 the price.
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Old Jul 27, 2005, 8:52 AM   #4
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I'm a relative newcomer, so I'm only relating my own experience; I have no real expertise to offer. It seems to me that it all depends on what you want to photograph and what you want to do with the photographs.

I dabbled with photography briefly in college (1970's), learned how to develop film and all that. I always wanted to take it up as a hobby, but the hassle of developing film and impracticality of setting up my own darkroom discouraged me. Fast forward 30 years or so. I now have a daughter who plays softball, and I wanted to take action shots of her games. After much deliberation, I opted for digital, and I'm glad I did. I bought a Digital Rebel when they first came out. I still have much to learn, but I am generally pleased with the results. The advantage of digital is that I can take several hundred shots over the weekend, take them home and see them that night without further expense. I can edit them and adjust them myself, crop them however I wish, and post them on a web site or email them to the coaches and parents. I'd hate to think what I would spend just on film and developing, considering that I have shot several thousand photos this year.

As far as the quality of digital vs. film, I think it depends on the resolution and skill with which the shots are taken. In regards to portability, I think that is a problem which predates digital. Serious photographers who carried film SLRs with all the attachments also faced the dilemma of how to get those spur of the moment shots. That's why you'll often see pros with an extra camera slung around their neck with a different size lens. That's why those little instamatic cameras became so popular, despite their obviously inferior optics.

As my camera bag expands and my DSLR outfit gets more awkward to deal with, I will probably invest in a little Point and Shoot digital to carry in my pocket, to take advantage of those fleeting snapshot opportunities.

Digital is not for everyone, but I enjoy the convenience it offers, and I've been happy with the results.
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Old Jul 27, 2005, 12:54 PM   #5
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Clive and all.... If you do not completely embrace the DSLR concept of photography and pure convemience is uppermost - you will probably never be satisfied by the demands (?) that DSLRS require of you.

Much of my shooting is for horse events. It is a fast moving constantly changing venue. I have to change settings on-the-run and swap lenses in tight places, all the while considering the setup for the next shot...Mode/ISO/WB/lens/settings, etc.

If the details of DSLR are not bringing you satisfaction and the post production is more trouble than you want...by all means, get a good fixed lens unit and go after what you DO enjoy. Photography is a very personal thing and being 'part of the crowd' doesn't mean a darned thing.
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Old Jul 27, 2005, 1:27 PM   #6
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I think you've come upon the difference between taking pictures and doing photography. My wife always carries her Canon A75 in her purse. She usually shoots in the "P" mode. That's "taking pictures". On the other hand, I drag out my 20D, select and install the appropriate lens, adjust the settings and "do some photography".

My pictures look sharper and more saturated than hers, but there are lots oftimes when she brings home a shot and I don't, simply because the DSLR was at home.
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Old Jul 27, 2005, 6:20 PM   #7
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I always had both SLR and pocket cameras with film. I found I got more pictures with my pocket camera because it was always with me. The same has been true with digital, but I think you need both.

I haven't gone to a DSLR because I want the simplicity of a single system. I'm not dense enough to not know you get better pictures with a DSLR, but I like the convenience of having a 12X stabilized zoom for wildlife without a bag of stuff.

Where digital excels for me is in small cameras. My best little 35mm camera was a tiny Konica with a 28-70mm lens. But with the limited apertures on small 35mm cameras I had to use fast film unless I was sure all of the pictures would be taken in the sun or with the flash. My digital darkroom for years was with my film scanner. Film scans from ASA100 film and slides from my SLR were pretty close to a 6Mp DSLR with good dynamic range. But my ASA 200 and 400 scans from the little camera were probably in the 4 and 3Mp range respectively after I ran them through Neat Image – which took forever back in the old days. Film scanners tend to accentuate grain.

My current carry camera is about the size of a deck of cards. It has full manual everything and 7Mp. You can even take decent movies with it. None of my small film cameras could compare.

If you start with a snapshot, the best you can get from a flatbed scanner is a digital snapshot. If you aren't into post processing you have the advantage of the film processing doing some of that for you. You get a little better dynamic range if you have a good scanner and the grain isn't a problem. If all I need is 4 X 6 size it is much easier to scan the photo than find the negative and scan that. But it isn't anywhere near the quality of scanning the negative.

I have found that all digital images can benefit from a little post processing. That is probably less true for DSLR images from photographers who know how to use their equipment.

I would keep the DSLR now that you evidently have it optioned out. Get a small carry everywhere camera to supplement it.

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Old Jul 28, 2005, 3:27 AM   #8
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I think I've resolved my own dilemna, to sell the DSLR kit and replace with a good non DSLR, or persevere or simply buy an extra smaller camera, the last option would probably mean the DSLR kit rarely being used and a quite large investment being wasted, so looking through the cupboards to get the holiday clothes organised I found an old camera case from an earlier model owned, the size seemed just about right, would my DSLR body and the kit lens permantly fixed fit it, they must have been designed for each other. So out with the dog last evening across the fields, camera bag neatly and easily carried over the shoulder, dog decides to do a roll in the middle of the field (not normally the sort of thing to make me reach for the camera), but just for the experiment, open bag flap, out with camera, lens cap off and switch on, point and focus locked on the dog and all in 12 seconds. Within 30 seconds from opening the bag flap I had 3 decent photos of my Old English Sheepdog with her legs in the air. So now, the whole caboodle can go with my when i set out to do proper photography, but for those many occasions when i just want to have a camera with me for those opportune moments I now have a top quality point and shoot camera easily carried and ready in seconds to record those moments.[img]/forums/images/emoticons/camera.gif[/img]Mind you, we have a few hours stop over at Dubai airport and I'm sure I might well be tempted!!!
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Old Jul 28, 2005, 5:17 AM   #9
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Me being very financially orientated, the choice to go digital was influenced by what would work out cheaper in the long run. That, was what I told myself, but being a gaget freak was a big part of it. After a couple of years, and about 3000 photos, it worked out cheaper for me than it would have to use film and get it it developed. I also would have taken a lot less photo's if I had used film, a lot of photos of memories that I would not have now.

Now I havethe slightly bigger S2 IS, not realy big, but too big to fit in my pocket. So now I will have to get a bag for it. If I can carry this along with me most of the time, and become even more serious about photography in the next 3 or so years, then I'll considder a DSLR. Or maybe 3 years from now it might not even be necessary, as there might be compacts with quality on par with todays DSLR's.

About getting a second camera. I'm afraid that if I get a 5 mp 3x optical zoom pocket camera, I will stop using my larger one.
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Old Jul 28, 2005, 10:26 PM   #10
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Hi Clive: I can relate to all thecomments from you and the others. Some very interesting and thoughtful observations.

I currently own multiple 35mm SLRs, as well as multiple digicams. I too was recently contemplating a move to a DSLR, but decided I would wait, and add one more prosumer non-DSLR to my collection. I do a lot of landscapes, so I decided to go for a wide-angle. Well, I bought an Oly C8080, and it is an absolutely super camera, with a super lens. (A very long learning curve, however.)

After using the 8080 for a while, I realized that I didn't reallyneed to spend the $ on a DSLR, and passed on buying the E-300, at least for now. Anyway, since you already have the E-300, go ahead and buy a C8080 as backup camera for your DSLR. They even use the same battery.

Tell your wife that you can never have too many cameras!!:-)
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