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Old Nov 10, 2005, 2:25 PM   #1
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Hello

I am trying to put together a camera "package" for my Daughter. I know next to nothing about photography, so the equipment I have selected is based solely on internet research/price. Usually when someone ask me to look at their pictures
(vacation, holiday etc.), I find them to be average (worthy of a short glance). Recently, my Daughter took a Canon point and shoot to an event for "special needs" children. I was floored by the pictures she took. I don't know what it is, but she has it.

Anyway, I had my Daughter check-out the Rebel XT, and she liked it's features, how it fit her hands etc.

Most of her pictures involve a combination of indoor/outdoor settings, portraits, and some light action shots. The majority of these pictures are also taken during daylight hours. She is not into landscapes, night shots or action sports (at this time). She has also expressed an interest in Macro type shots.

The following list is what I have put together for about $2500. If I am missing something, or if there is a better combination for her shooting style, please comment.

Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lense $503.00
Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM $344.00
Lens Hoods $60.00
Lens Rear Caps $14.00
Can Digital Rebel XT Camera $825.00 (after rebates - also, 18 month interest free financing)
SanDisk 1GB Ultra II CompactFlash Card $85.00
Sigma EM-140 DG Ring Flash for Canon $300.00
Sigma Electronic Flash EF 500 DG Super for Canon AF $200
Canon 2400 SLR Gadget Bag $30.00
Slik Pro 700DX Tripod $130.00

Again, I have no experience in these matters, please feel free to suggest changes or confirm choices.

Thank You

Zomax






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Old Nov 10, 2005, 3:11 PM   #2
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Have you taken into consideration the 1.6 focal length multiplier? The EF 100mm will be equal to 160mm and the EF 85mm will be equal to 136mm on a 35mm SLR when used on the Rebel XT.
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Old Nov 10, 2005, 3:28 PM   #3
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Add another memory card. One, 1 gig card, and she'll "run out of film."

Dave
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Old Nov 10, 2005, 3:43 PM   #4
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Good idea on a larger card. That one got by me.
I had looked at the 2GB card, but it was more expensive than the 1GB x2.

I tend to lean toward a single "large" card, as compared to 2 smaller cards
to cut down on the wear and tear associated with repeated install/remove.

Thanks for the input

Zomax

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Old Nov 10, 2005, 4:38 PM   #5
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How old is your daughter? How much photography has she done besides this one event? It seems like you're buying an awful lot of gear all at once and some pretty specific lenses. Unless she has been doing photography for a while (not just taking snapshots) and thus specifically wants those prime lenses and a ring flash, I think you might be rushing things a bit. Here are some specifics:

1. You shouldn't have to buy rear lens caps - Canon lenses come with them and if you're not getting them the dealer isn't reputable.

2. Lenses - I would suggest starting with just a single lens - a mid range zoom rather than two prime lenses as you indicated. Additional lens purchases can then be made where the initial lens falls short. If your daughter has never used an SLR system before, start with the kit lens or the 17-85 lens if you want a better quality lens - but the normal kit lens if she has no SLR experience. Primes are usually of higher quality but they are very targeted in their use. As she learns more about the camera and develops her own interests she can determine for herself where the kit lens falls short.

3. Flashes. Flashes are a great accessory, but external flashes on an SLR can be more difficult to use than an imbedded flash on a point and shoot. Again, if she's using an SLR for the first time I would suggest waiting on ANY flash until she's comfortable with the camera first. If she learns quickly you can certainly buy the flash in a few months. But, she may be happy with the on-board flash for a while.

4. Tripod. Tripods are a great accessory - and you've chosen a decent model for the money.

Bottom line - keep it simple to start with. Too much too fast and your daughter will find she's getting WORSE results with the XT than she did with the point and shoot. An SLR is capable of better results than a point and shoot but it's more complicated to achieve those results. So I would suggest the camera with kit lens, tripod, 2x 1gb flash cards, gadget bag and let her work with those for a while first. Then buy the other equipment as she needs it / is ready for it. No need to spend $400-$500 on a lens or flash or whatever that she might not end up using.


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Old Nov 10, 2005, 5:11 PM   #6
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Consider some software for editing her pictures... Adobe Elements or similar. Also a card reader. I'd recommend you consider the EF-S 17-85 lens only. Great carry around piece. Add others after she gets used to the camera.

The ring flash might be replaced by a conventional one like the 430EX.

I have one 1 GB card and it's ample (I shoot RAW + Large JPG with my 20D). You can always add more storage if needed later. It's only going to cheaper.
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Old Nov 10, 2005, 5:26 PM   #7
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lucky2505 wrote:
Quote:
Have you taken into consideration the 1.6 focal length multiplier? The EF 100mm will be equal to 160mm and the EF 85mm will be equal to 136mm on a 35mm SLR when used on the Rebel XT.
Pardon my ignorance of these things, but does the 1.6 multiplier also apply to the f-stop? Just curious.


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Old Nov 10, 2005, 5:31 PM   #8
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nope. Aperture and shutter speeds are the same from point and shoot to SLR or DSLR.

The multiplier only applies to the affective focal length of the lens.


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Old Nov 11, 2005, 1:22 AM   #9
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Thanks for the input everybody.

John, just what I needed to hear.

Zomax
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Old Nov 11, 2005, 2:24 AM   #10
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Hi Zomax,

I would recommend an extra battery and have an extra CF card even if it's a slow small one, just in case, when the battery dies or you run out of card space it sure is nice to pop them in and keep shooting. I agree with the compact flash reader and holding off on the lenses and flashes. I lose front caps, never lost arear cap. Some people like to put a UV filter on the front of the lense for protection, others say it degrades quality. Let her see wherethe focal length of the majorityof her photographs fall into, the data will be stored in the images. Consider the 50mm F1.8 lense, I became frustrated with the small F stop on the kit lense, and the 50mm is reasonably priced.

There is a "Magic Lantern Guide" by Rob Sheppard setup like the user manual, however it explains a little bit more about why you turn those dials and press those buttons. Read it yourself just to get a basic idea of how the dslr works and you and your daughter will have another thing in common to chat about. Best Regards-
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