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Old Jun 28, 2004, 8:10 PM   #1
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I hate to be yet another person who doesn't have the guts to make the decision of which camera to buy. But I really just can't decide. Sooooo...

I do a lot of hiking and biking with my kodak 6340. So I take pictures of waterfalls, lakes, sunsets, hikers and other things you find on hike and bike trails. However, I have been getting more and more serious about my pictures, and I simply don't like the quality of pictures the kodak takes anymore (way too much post processing. The colors seem almost Painted on.)

Anyway, I narrowed my search to two cameras. The Canon 300d (SLR) and the Olympus C-5060. Here are the pros and cons I see of each

Canon 300d $800
PRO:
Best image quality
Interchangeable lenses
Most professional
Very quick shooting
Probably has better resale value

CON:
IT IS HUGE!
Expensive
No live histogram
Need a new lens for good macro


Olympus C-5060 $500
PRO:
Compact and Solid as a rock
Nice Pictures
Good macro
Long exposure time
Great low light

CON:
Zoom not great
Images a little noisy
Hard to get high ISO
Resolution could be a little better

Does anyone have an opinion on which one I should get? Size is a factor for me. And I am not a professional photographer, but I get more proficient every day. So I need a camera that I can "grow" into (this seems to be the case with both of them.)

I should also say that everyone I know tells me to get the 300d and live with the size (And I have to confess that I like the photos it takes better then the olympus.) But my biggest fear is that I will get the 300d and break it on one of my bike rides. Can anyone attest to the durability of these under rough conditions? Will my bones break before it does?

Thanks! And sorry for the book.
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Old Jun 28, 2004, 10:57 PM   #2
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Only you can answer that one. I own a Point and shoot Nikon 990, and also a DRebel.

With the Canon, your buying into a camera system. It is larger, but then all SLRs are. It isn't all that heavy though, unless your going with the battery grip (a nice option I may add). The Canon gives you flexibility (All DSLRs do) far beyond what any point and shoot digital camera can give you. It will cost you more in the long run though...there are no free lunches. By the way, if your thinking of low light shooting, then the DRebel wins hands down.

I bought my father an Olympus 2020 a few years back. Olympus makes very good cameras. By their nature, point and shoots are smaller. I worry about your thinking that the Olympus is build better. It isn't. All but the big heavy pro gear will not withstand abuse. They are cameras after all, and will need protecting to a certain point.

If it was me, I would go with the DRebel, and buy myself a Lowpro backpack, or belt Pack to protect it on your hikes.
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Old Jun 29, 2004, 1:28 AM   #3
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A couple of things you said above tend to make me think you don't need to be buying the Digital Rebel.

1. You said too much post-processing with the Kodak you currently have. If you meant the camera processes the image too much, that I understand. If you were saying you had to process the images too much yourself, You need to avoid the Digital Rebel. There's not one image I've taken with mine in over 8700 clicks of the shutter that did not require a certain amount of post-processing. Images come out of Digital SLR's with as little processing as possible, the notion being the photographer has the freedom to finish the product as he/she wants. If you want to avoid this, steer clear of the Digital Rebel.

2. You say the Digital Rebel is HUGE??? It's the smallest, lightest digital SLR available, and is smaller and lighter than even most film SLR's out there today. If the size is even remotely something that will bother you, stay the digicam route.

What the Digital Rebel does offer are images from ISO 200-800 that are, hands down, cleaner (less noisy) than any digicam is capable of today- no comparison. If you can live at ISO 100 on down, a nicer digicam like the C-5060 will compete image quality wise. On the other hand, when it comes to shooting speed, the ability to lock on fast and sure in very, very low light, accept a vast array of first quality interchangeable EF lenses to fit your needs, etc, etc, the digital SLR is leaps and bounds ahead of the capabilities of any digicam out there today.

Construction wise, the Digital Rebel is well made but is NOT robust. If you take a tumble from your bike and fall square on it, my prayers are with you. Who knows what will happen. Compared to when I use my EOS 3 film camera I am very carful when it comes to gripping the body for vertical shots. With my film bodies my hands come to rest near the prism side. With the Digital Rebel that area is somewhat delicate with the built-in flash residing up there, so I am very careful to watch my grip when switching from horizontal to vertical. Otherwise I have no complaints. I am careful to take care of my equipment unlike some who truly treat their cameras like tools. People who do that are better off going the extra $$ and buying the 10D.
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Old Jun 29, 2004, 10:38 AM   #4
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Great advice!

1.) Actually when I said there was too much post processing, I was talking about kodak's internal processing engine. But I'm glad you said something. Although I do enjoy a certain amount of "digital darkroom" work (messing with color balance, stitching...) I'm not sure I really want to edit EVERY picture. I'll keep this in mind.

2.) Haha, I knew someone was going to get after me about my comment about its size. Unfortunately, I have to shove this camera into my hydration backpack. And boy it is a tight squeeze with the rebel. I suppose I could get a bigger backpack. But even still I would have to get a "mini" SLR case (which doesn't offer much in the way of protection. And I won't be able to carry extra lenses with me.

Of course, Chacko is right too. If I take a spill, neither camera is indestructible. But then again, I think I can get a much beefier case for the c-5060. then again again, I'v had my kodak for a year without smashing it.

Anyways, I'm still not sure what I'm going to do. It seems like it comes down to the question "Am I serious about getting the best pictures? No matter the work involved." If the answer is "yes" I should go with the rebel. If the answer is "I'm not sure" or "not really", I should probably go with the olympus. Does that about sum it up?

Anyway. Thanks for the great advice!





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Old Jun 29, 2004, 11:22 AM   #5
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Greg Chappell wrote:
Quote:
What the Digital Rebel does offer are images from ISO 200-800 that are, hands down, cleaner (less noisy) than any digicam is capable of today- no comparison. If you can live at ISO 100 on down, a nicer digicam like the C-5060 will compete image quality wise. On the other hand, when it comes to shooting speed, the ability to lock on fast and sure in very, very low light, accept a vast array of first quality interchangeable EF lenses to fit your needs, etc, etc, the digital SLR is leaps and bounds ahead of the capabilities of any digicam out there today.

The Digital Rebel is capable of shooting at ISO 100 - 1600
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Old Jun 29, 2004, 11:25 AM   #6
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You are very right to worry about size. It does matter. If you don't bring the camera because it doesn't fit in your bag, then why have it?

You could look into a fanny pack, or something that rides below the pack on your back to put the camera gear in.

Eric
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Old Jun 29, 2004, 3:10 PM   #7
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Well if size is very important, then the Olympus would be a better buy for you.

Most DSLRs tend to give you softer pictures and force you to post process them. This is actually a feature that most photographers like, because they allow full control over your picture quality (not to say that you can't up the internal sharpening, etc in the camera...you do have that option).

Nothing wrong with the Olympus. I still own 2 of their digicams, and have nothing but praise for their photo quality, and frankly, that is all that counts...not the bells and the whistles, but the output.

However, give some serious thoughts to later. A DSLR will allow you freedom and flexibility. If you want to do wildlife...go ahead, night time photography...its yours, wide angle shots...you got it,sports photography...you can. It will allow you freedom in creativity due to its flexibility that even the best point and shoot digicam cannot give you.

EDIT: Also wanted to say, there is a histogram feature in the Digital Rebel. You can have it pop up after each shot, along with the picture thumbnail and other information. Works great. Another great plus, battery power is awesome. Get the grip, and you won't have to worry about batteries on most trips..but this makes it even larger....no free lunch I guess.

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Old Jun 29, 2004, 3:58 PM   #8
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choeschen wrote:
Quote:
Greg Chappell wrote:
Quote:
What the Digital Rebel does offer are images from ISO 200-800 that are, hands down, cleaner (less noisy) than any digicam is capable of today- no comparison. If you can live at ISO 100 on down, a nicer digicam like the C-5060 will compete image quality wise. On the other hand, when it comes to shooting speed, the ability to lock on fast and sure in very, very low light, accept a vast array of first quality interchangeable EF lenses to fit your needs, etc, etc, the digital SLR is leaps and bounds ahead of the capabilities of any digicam out there today.

The Digital Rebel is capable of shooting at ISO 100 - 1600
I believe he was saying that there is very little noise from ISO 200-800, when compared to other cameras,not that the ISO range "is" 200-800.
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Old Jun 29, 2004, 4:04 PM   #9
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Stop faffing around and go for the digital rebel:-)
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Old Jun 30, 2004, 11:14 AM   #10
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Thanks, Billy!



Actually, ISO 1600 is usable. Here's something I recently shot at that rating with my 50mm f1.8, wide open. Due to the lens opening & the way the subjects were not in the same plane they are a little soft, but considering the aperture and ISO 1600 I liked the look:

http://www.photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id=2485411

Having downloaded the latest available hacked firmware, I now also can go to ISO 3200. Used in the right situation it is pretty cool. Definitely noisy, but cool nonetheless.
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