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Old Apr 29, 2003, 10:24 PM   #1
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Default SLR's - SLR types or real ones ?

am far from being a pro but would love to learn how to take good , decent photos. i love travelling and the outdoors. would be greatful if you could share your views on going SLR types ( Minolta 7i or Canon 5700 ) or entry level prosumer SLR's ( Nikon d100 or Canon 10d ). considereng the obvious price difference , what major advantage would real SLR's have for my use? is it worth getting into the SLR types and then upgrading later or go straight into investing with the real ones?
thanks a lot for the big help!
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Old Apr 30, 2003, 12:00 AM   #2
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First off, all the cameras you list are very good. I am bet you'd be happy with a 7i (or another in that family) or the Nikon 5700. Those two DSLR's you list are the logical choice if you wanted a good DSLR and are not a pro.

The advantages of the DSLR are many. Flexibility of replaceable lenses. Better pictures (assuming equivalent skill in the person) because you can put better lenses on them, because their CCD/CMOS is better with lower noise characteristics. Better manual controls that are easier to understand if you used a film SLR. Usually a wider range of ISO…. There are many others.

Maybe you are not making this mistake, but it looks like you are choosing based on features of the cameras. The better question is what types of pictures you are going to take and then match the equipment to that.

I was in the same boat you were. I wanted to take pictures of birds and wildlife. This means I need a longer zoom than most digicams have (note, I say most... not all.) I also want image stabilization because I will be using the camera on long hikes and don't want the extra weight of a tripod.

I will be doing some macro work in low light in forests. This means I need an image-stabilized macro (or a tripod) along with a low f-stop.

This list is enough to eliminate most digicams from the list. I could have done digiscoping that would get me the long reach, and combine it with a digicam with good macro ability. The Nikon 4500 & a Swarsky or Celestron fits this very well. In the end, that would probably be cheaper than a DSLR and the required lenses. But that would entail carrying a lot more equipment and it would weigh more. I concluded that the flexibility of replaceable lenses would let me limit weight and still get the long telephoto reach I would like (when I'm willing to carry it.) Not as good as digiscoping, but still good.

And finally.... to be blunt, I have the money. I'm not rich, but I've been saving up. I don't want to spend lots of money but I can afford to do it. And you have to realize that a DSLR can be a lot of money. I will be spending a bit over $4,000 on my starting 10D kit this week. And that doesn't include a long prime lens (400mm+), which would double that price tag. Or a good bag to carry it all in.

I also have an old film SLR. So I'm used to the controls and the flexibility of replaceable lenses. You have not said if you have any photography experience. If you don't, I'm not sure I'd suggest a DSLR. It's an expensive system to buy into if you don't know you'll like it.

Also realize that when you buy into a DSLR, you are buying a system. You might replace that camera in 3-4 years, but you'll be using those lenses, teleconverters & other stuff for 10+ years. You are buying into either Canon or Nikon for a long time to come. Both make good stuff, so I wouldn't worry about that much. But a DSLR system is something that has to be considered over the long term.
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Old Apr 30, 2003, 1:06 AM   #3
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One of the disadvantages heard from users of cameras with EVFs, (through the lens) Electronic Viewfinder, is in low light situations you can't see your subject, especially when you go to press the shutter button halfway to focus as the shutter also closes down at that point. I have the problem too with my EVF camera, but it doesn't bother me, and I can work around the problem.
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Old Apr 30, 2003, 2:24 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Mike_PEAT
One of the disadvantages heard from users of cameras with EVFs, (through the lens) Electronic Viewfinder, is in low light situations you can't see your subject
I don't know about other models, but with the Minolta D7xx the EVF and the LCD boost the output when there is not enough light , in extreme conditions, they switch into BW mode.
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Old Apr 30, 2003, 6:36 AM   #5
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The D7's becomes a night vision goggle in total dakness like KCan said... It's AF still track just fine at theses extremes 8) 8) 8)

Even though I'm looking to be moving on to a dSLR now, IMO the D7's are good cameras if not perfect. One feature I'll missed is it real-time histogram overlay in the EVF which will be missing short of getting an another of the newer Blad! The other one is the What You See Is What You Get (WYSIWYG) mode on the D7's, it makes kid-plays out of shooting in manual...(even @ night) :lol: :lol: :lol:

No regret here when I'll be moving on, and I'll keep the D7 if not just for shooting in Infrared where this camera excell at :P . Also another thing to consider is that I used to Islands hop and trek all the while staying pretty nimble with an EVF camera, now I'm looking lugging @ least two lenses and a bigger body as well a camera bag... (BTW one of the lens weighted more than my entire D7 with battery and microdrive!)
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