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Old Oct 1, 2010, 6:41 PM   #11
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Also, keep in mind that you don't need to buy all of your lenses at once. It's often a good idea to get a basic kit lens and use it for a while before spending a lot of money on additional lenses. IOW, consider it a tuition fee. ;-)

That way, you'll get a better feel for your needs after using one for a while, and can make better decisions for future lens purchases after you have more experience with one. There are pros and cons to any of them (size, weight, cost, ergonomics, build quality, focal range, brightness, etc.), and each user tends to have different requirements/expectations from their gear.

All too often, a new dSLR owner will tend to buy a lot of lenses, and they often end up on shelves for one reason or another (wrong focal range, too heavy, not bright enough, not sharp enough, etc., etc.). So, I'd probably keep it simple to begin with until you can figure out what (if any) limitations a basic lens has for the type of photos you shoot more often.
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Old Oct 1, 2010, 6:42 PM   #12
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With a dSLR using a Sony APS-C size sensor, you'll need to multiply the focal length of a lens by 1.5x to see what focal length you'd need to use on a 35mm camera for the same angle of view.

So, I'd keep angle of view differences in mind when lens shopping. IOW, you'll have a narrower angle of view (more apparent magnification) for a given focal length lens on a model like the Sony A500, as compared to the same focal length lens on a 35mm camera.
Right. I probably should have been more clear. When I said I shot at 24-48mm equiv indoors on my P&S, I meant equiv for a APS-C size sensor. In a previous thread TCav was kind enough to do the converting for me: http://forums.steves-digicams.com/so...lly-did-4.html

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Old Oct 1, 2010, 6:47 PM   #13
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Also, keep in mind that you don't need to buy all of your lenses at once. It's often a good idea to get a basic kit lens and use it for a while before spending a lot of money on additional lenses. IOW, consider it a tuition fee. ;-)

That way, you'll get a better feel for your needs after using one for a while, and can make better decisions for future lens purchases after you have more experience with one. There are pros and cons to any of them (size, weight, cost, ergonomics, build quality, focal range, brightness, etc.), and each user tends to have different requirements/expectations from their gear.
I agree. And will probably just get the 18-55 kit lens. With the deal on the body only, before I bought the kit lens, I thought I'd do a little looking to see if there was something in a little higher price range that was worth putting the cost of the kit lens towards instead. I am trying to keep it simple. I just want to get 1 lens that will be a good for portraits and possibly the night shooting as well, preferring to pass on a prime so it still does well as a general lens.

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Old Oct 1, 2010, 7:00 PM   #14
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I have the Sigma 18-125 f3.5/5.6 and it is not a bad lens. I used it for a trip to Ireland so that I wouldn't have to carry a lot of weight and it was fine.
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Old Oct 2, 2010, 1:59 PM   #15
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We went to Fry's last night to pick up some DVD-Rs and they had the A500 with the kit lens for 499 so I grabbed it! Now I dont have to wait for shipping...but I do have to decide where I want to go test it out at...lots of choices in San Diego.

Thanks for the help. I have my flash on order still with the Amazon.

One last question, does anyone know anything about what I think is the Minolta 28-75? I found someone selling this for 200, I'm taking a class in the spring and we are suppose to have a film camera...I haven't used a film camera since I was a teenager...:

Minolta X-700 mps camera with strap -
28-75 Zoom Lens and filter
70-210 Zoom Lens
Auto Flash 45F/XP
Silk Universal U-112 Stand
Canvas Bag with compartments
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Old Oct 2, 2010, 2:14 PM   #16
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That's a Manual Focus SLR. The lenses from it will not work on a newer Minolta Autofocus SLR or Sony dSLR (the lens mount is not the same) without an adapter (and then, you'd have other issues to contend with).

Minolta changed their lens mount to an Autofocus setup some 25 years ago in 1985, beginning with the Maxxum 7000. Here's an article about it:

http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography...um7k/index.htm

If you want to use Minolta lenses with the A500, you'll want Minolta Autofocus (a.k.a., Minolta A, Maxxum, Dynax) Mount lenses. The older MC/MD mount manual focus lenses like that X700 uses won't even fit on a Minolta or Sony dSLR model without an adapter (and then, you'd need to use manual focus with one, and the adapter would need optical elements in it to allow focus to infinity, which can degrade optical quality). You'd also need to use stop down metering (which may not work in some modes).

If you want a used film camera, I'd look at the Minolta Maxxum section at http://www.keh.com (the Maxxum bodies are Autofocus). You'll see links to Camera bodies (body only) and Camera Kits (cameras including a lens):

http://www.keh.com/Camera/format-35m...de=MA&bco=527&
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Old Oct 2, 2010, 2:20 PM   #17
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Thanks, good to know. I'll worry about all that closer to when the class starts then.

I'm off to go play with the A500!
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Old Oct 2, 2010, 7:24 PM   #18
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Diana-

I just found this new thread. www.keh.com has a Sigma 18-125mm lens which I use as my walk around lens for $165.00 It is hard to find so here is the link:

http://www.keh.com/Camera/format-Dig...c=55916&r=WG&f

In a single lens configuration, that lens would be a good choice. Then get used to the camera, and develop your skills. The Sony F42AM flash is a very good choice. As long as it is fulfilled by Amazon, you are covered nicely with return privileges.

The Sigma 18-125mm lens is a great lens and I have gotten a lot of use out of mine, even shooting no flash theater shots. But that is your decision to make. You have gained some very valuable experience in testing the Panasonic FZ-100. Now you can begin to move further forward with confidence as you develop your A-500 skills.

Here is a no flash, ISO 1600 photo that was done using the Sigma 18-125mm lens:

http://anchorse.smugmug.com/Other/So...5_cXRxk-X3.jpg

Sarah Joyce
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Old Oct 2, 2010, 8:51 PM   #19
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Sarah,

Ah, that would have been a good idea. I was impatient and saw that frys had the camera with the 18-55 kit lens for 499 so I grabbed it!

I just got home from testing it out a little. I think I'm getting the stomach flu so it was a short outing as I don't feel well. We stopped for some tea at a restaurant and I pulled out the camera to test the indoor/no flash...and wow! I couldn't believe the difference at high ISOs. Y'all weren't kidding

But silly me, I left it on ISO 3200 when we went down to the coast in La Jolla...so all my beach shots and seals were at ISO 3200...oops. I feel like a dork.

Anyway, I can see there is going to be a big learning curve. But for my first time out, I don't think I did too bad. I love the DOF you can get, and a really lovely bokeh effect.

We stopped at best buy on the way out to pick up a tripod (i have a credit card with them). And my husband insisted on buying the 75-300. I told him if he had to have a zoom lens, then we should just get the 55-200. Sometimes it's just not worth the argument. Anyway, it's fine. We tried it out at the bay today and I really liked it.

I'm going to go take a nap now as I feel pretty awful. But maybe I'll post some pictures later or tomorrow.

Diana
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Old Oct 2, 2010, 9:05 PM   #20
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Diana-

I am sorry that you are not feeling well. Personally, I have some real qualms about the Sony 75-300mm. It would not be my choice, I much prefer the Sony 55-200mm lens. But I will let you sort that out.

I know you are looking at some informal portraits of your children. Below is a link to a photo that I just took of my husband, Bradley with the A-500 equipped with the Sigma 18-125mm lens. The lighting used was simple bounce flash with the A-500's WB set to Auto and the ISO Set to Auto. You will notice the lighting is not harsh as you would expect from flash, but soft and attractive lighting.

http://anchorse.smugmug.com/Other/So...5_vP94f-X3.jpg

The next photo shows how the flash head was positioned. The head it tipped slightly forward, but the bulk of the light is being bounced off the white ceiling.

http://anchorse.smugmug.com/Other/So...9_99gQL-X3.jpg

Sarah Joyce
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