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Old Jun 13, 2008, 3:34 PM   #1
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and I'm having second thoughts...I bought the camera with the standard kit lens and also bout the sony 70-300mm lens. My pictures will revolve around my family. That means--indoor, candid, portraits, sports, family outings..etc....I havent been too impressed with the shots I've taken-they've been more indoor shots and the color isnt that great...

I'm thinking about returning the a300 and going for the XSi b/c I'm reading everywhere that the sony does horrible in High ISO settings, which may not be optimal for kids running around all the time. I know i'd have to pay few hundred more but i'm willing to pay that for the best pictures.

I'll also mention that I dont want to do that much photo editing, i'm a super beginner

thoughts anyone??????
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Old Jun 13, 2008, 3:50 PM   #2
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I think the fault lies with the lens, not the camera. For indoor shots, the kit lens isn't going to be great. I use a Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 or a Minolta 50mm f/1.7 for my indoor shots.

Can you post some examples of the shots you're not happy with?
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Old Jun 13, 2008, 3:54 PM   #3
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i will when i get home!!! thanks for the reply...

how much are those lenses?
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Old Jun 13, 2008, 4:26 PM   #4
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The Minolta 50mm f/1.7 is about $75-$125 on eBay.

The Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 is about $400-$450.

For indoor shots, you really need a large aperture lens, a flash, or a high ISO setting (or any of those in combination.)
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Old Jun 13, 2008, 4:42 PM   #5
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Here are some examples of indoor shots I took with those lenses:


Konica Minolta Maxxum 5D (1/50", f/2.8, ISO 800)with Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8:



Konica Minolta Maxxum 5D (1/30", f/2.0, ISO 800) with Minolta 50mm f/1.7:
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Old Jun 13, 2008, 5:00 PM   #6
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TCav is right, it's probably the lens. I use a 50mm 1.7 and a Tamron 90mm 2.8 and I've had great results indoors with no flash on my KM 5D. You didn't mention if you were using the on board flash or not. Another consideration is an external flash. I found my flash shots improved incredibly when I went to the external flash. I use the minolta 3600HS. It will work with your a300, but the 5600HS is much better. You can find them used on e-bay. Of course Sony has newer equivalent rebadged (read: more expensive) units available. And the Metz flashes also come highly rated. It really does make a difference indoors.

As far as the reported high ISO issue, I believe it has more to do with noise than color. With a good lens and adequate ambient light, you really won't need to go over ISO 800 very much. Using higher ISO to overcome inferior glass really isn't the solution. And better lenses will definitely give better color. In the mean time, you can go to the internal settings and up the saturation. I usually kept mine at +1. Of course, that's a personal preference. I find Canon's color rendering a little TOO red and not as true to what the eye sees. Again, just my opinion.

I found there was quite a learning curve when I stepped up to a dSLR. Give it time and lot's of practice and you'll see your results improve dramatically. Good luck.


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Old Jun 13, 2008, 7:25 PM   #7
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I wouldn't want to give the impression that the Sony 18-70mm f/3.5-5.6 kit lens is a bad lens. It's just not a great choice for indoor/low-light photography unaided. And there are a number of alternatives, some expensive and some not so expensive.

And, as DrChris has pointed out, it will take you a while to get good results from the A300, or any dSLR, or for that matter, any new tool. The A300 is a fine tool for what you say you want to do, and it's capable of a lot, but you need to find out how to take advantage of it.
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Old Jun 14, 2008, 6:06 AM   #8
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jang wrote:
Quote:
and I'm having second thoughts...I bought the camera with the standard kit lens and also bout the sony 70-300mm lens. My pictures will revolve around my family. That means--indoor, candid, portraits, sports, family outings..etc....I havent been too impressed with the shots I've taken-they've been more indoor shots and the color isnt that great...
For indoor shots without a flash, you'll want to set your White Balance to match the lighting (usually Tungsten) with most cameras to prevent a orange color cast (most cameras don't do well in incandescent or tungsten lighting using Auto White Balance).

If you're using a flash, then Auto WB will work OK (but, with any camera model, you'll want an external flash you can bounce for best results, so that you have a more diffused light source).

Those are not suitable lense for indoor use without a flash though. You'll want to use a flash indoors with those. It's a good idea to have an f/2 or brighter (respresented by smaller f/stop numbers) prime for indoor use without a flash. You can get a used Minolta 50mm f/1.7 Autofocus lens for around $100 at reputable vendors of used gear, or a new Sony 50mm f/1.4 AF lens for $329, which is a brighter lens (smaller f/stop numbers represent wider available apertures).

Quote:
I'm thinking about returning the a300 and going for the XSi b/c I'm reading everywhere that the sony does horrible in High ISO settings, which may not be optimal for kids running around all the time. I know i'd have to pay few hundred more but i'm willing to pay that for the best pictures.
Read where? Are you sure they're discussing the A300 and not the A350? I think you'll find there is not much difference between the 10MP A300 and the new 12MP Canon models (other than the A300 has ISO 3200 and the XSi only goes to ISO 1600).

The A300 is much improved in the noise area compared to the A100. The A350 will have higher noise compared to the 10MP models as ISO speeds are increased. That's because it's a higher resolution 14 Megapixel sensor. So, photosites for each pixel are smaller (which means a smaller surface area requiring more amplification for equivalent sensitivity to light).

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Old Jun 14, 2008, 7:28 AM   #9
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ISO tests of the same subjects, in the same lighting at imaging-resource.com

These are full size originals. I think you'd be hard pressed to see much difference between them at typical print and viewing sizes. The Sony looks better in some areas of the image, and the Canons look better in other areas of the image, looking at the full size originals. Print them at 8x10" and see what they look like for yourself.

Rebel XSi at ISO 1600

Rebel XTi at ISO 1600

Canon EOS-40D at ISO 1600

Canon EOS-40D at ISO 3200 (note that the XSi and XTi don't have ISO 3200).

Sony A200 at ISO 1600 (note that the A300 uses the same 10MP sensor, with the same image processing options as the A200).

Sony A200 at ISO 3200


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Old Jun 21, 2008, 1:31 PM   #10
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i have owned the a300 for a couple of months now and have no quibbles with it. of course, i only take wildlife pics. it took a while to learn the camera and i DID get a different lens, even though my camera came with 2 kit lenses.

my only complaint is very minor . . . some buttons are too easy to activate accidentally, including the flash pop-up button.

i never use the onboard flash. in fact, i much prefer natural light. i am hopeless when it comes to using a flash. i think that will be another learning curve for you.

btw, having looked at lots of sample pics, i found canon not to be any better than other cameras regarding the noise issue, which is partly the function of the size of the sensor . . . larger is better.

also, i MUCH prefer having a camera that has in-camera satbilization, like sony (konica/minolta), olympus and pentax. canon and nikon do not have it and the staibilized leneses are much more expensive than non-stabilized.

good luck. hope this helps a little.

ellen fl
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