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Old Dec 20, 2005, 1:19 PM   #11
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Budget probably around $700. Since I am not looking for high end SLR, hopefully I could achieve my goals of excellent low light pictures with this budget and just slip into the SLR category. Thanks.
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Old Dec 21, 2005, 9:52 AM   #12
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At that price you only have 2 choices; the Nikon D50 or the Konica-Minolta 5D.

Both are good pieces of kit, but for low-light work the KM has the Anti-Shake built into the body which gives it the lead in my view.

Seems to be available from B&H for around $650 which gives you a bit of money to buy a data card. My advice is to get 1Gb card at least.

Konica Minolta Maxxum 5D, 6.1 Megapixel, SLR Digital Camera Kit with Minolta Maxxum 18-70mm f/3.5-5.6(D) AF DT Zoom Lens

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Old Dec 21, 2005, 12:23 PM   #13
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This thread has much of the discussion concerning the aperature (f stop?), is there a better lens for the KM 5D with a higher f stop? Maybe buy the camera with body only and purchase the lens separate, or will my budget increase dramatically? Another question, with the kit lens or a better lens, would I need a separate lens to get better zoom on distant objects?
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Old Dec 21, 2005, 3:17 PM   #14
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Been researching. Are there only three lenses available for the KM 5D (AF DT Zoom 18-70mm, 11-18mm, and 18-200mm)? If so, how would I get an f1.4 50mm lens as posted by bernabeu? Is this a non-DSLR that is compatible with the DSLR 5D?
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Old Dec 21, 2005, 3:34 PM   #15
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all minolta maxxum lenses (otherwise known as "A" mount) will work perfectly

non "DT" lenses will have a 1.5x crop factor - a 50mm will act as a 75mm, a 200mm will become a 300mm - but the f stop REMAINS THE SAME

a 'DT' lens will only work with the minolta digital camera because it is designed for the smaller APS-C sized 'film plane

ps. look for a used maxxum 50mm f1.7 for about $50, this will make a perfect 75mm f1.7 'portrait' lens on the 5D while remaining a standard 50mm if/when used on a film camera

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Old Dec 21, 2005, 3:41 PM   #16
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The 3 lenses you're looking at (new DT series lenses) are just 3 newer ones designed for use on a DSLR only. Lenses designed for Minolta 35mm SLR Autofocus film cameras (Maxxum or Dynax models) will work fine, too.

There are many lenses that will work on the Maxxum 5D (from Minolta, Tamron, Sigma, Tokina and even Vivitar).

Just look for Maxxum (or Dynax) lenses from Minolta (all Minolta Autofocus lenses); or lenses designed for Minolta AF cameras from the other lens manufacturers.

An inexpensive low light lens would be something like the Minolta 50mm f/1.7 (under $100 new, or around $50 in excellent shape used). It's not a zoom, but it's going to be brighter and sharper than zoom lenses. The 50mm f/1.4 suggested earlier is brighter (but pricier). On a budget, I'd stick with the less expensive 50mm f/1.8

A 50mm is not quite as wide as you may want for some conditions when used on a DSLR
But, there are other choices around, too. For example, I've got a Minolta 28mm f/2 lens that I like to use in low light on a Maxxum 5D, and I've got my eyes open for a deal on a 35mm f/2.

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Old Dec 22, 2005, 1:28 AM   #17
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If your daughter is still a small child, maybe 75mm-equivalent is about right for pictures of her doing things in the house, since you don't need too wide a field of view to take a picture of a little kid. So those fast 50mm lenses are a good way to go, I second the recommendation.

As slipe mentioned earlier, changing the ISO might make a bigger difference to your low-light shooting than a faster lens. SLRs have excellent high-ISO capabilities, so remember that you don't really need a super fast lens to take great indoor pictures with an SLR, although it certainly helps.

I like Canon, so I think I ought to point out that you can get a Digital Rebel, or a used 10D, for around $500. Canon makes a cheap but nice f1.8 50mm (~$75) and a not-so-cheap and extremely sharp f1.4 50mm (~$310). Canon also makes an f1.4 35mm, which is very expensive (~$1000), but Sigma makes an f1.4 30mm and an f1.8 20mm which are not too expensive (~$400). The 20mm f 1.8 is available for Minolta, Canon, and Nikon mounts (so it's one to think about if you do get that K-M 5D), but the 30mm 1.4 I think is only for Nikon and Canon.

Still, I will agree that the K-M 5D's image stabilization does indeed probably make it the better camera for low-light stuff.

Does anyone know what fast lenses are available for Pentax? I know next to nothing abou tose *ist cameras other than that they seem to be very inexpensive.
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Old Jan 17, 2006, 10:26 PM   #18
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I have continued researching all the possibly cameras to fit my needs and price range. It looks like there are about 6 cameras: Konica Minolta Maxxum 5D, Canon Digital Rebel XT, Nikon D50 & D70, Olympus E Volt 500, and Pentax *ist DS2. All are listed as Steve's best cameras for amerature DSLR. I want to make my purchase within the next two weeks. Any final advise or recommendations? I still favor the KM Maxxum 5D.
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Old Jan 17, 2006, 10:54 PM   #19
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I've read that the olympus isnt the best performer of this bunch in high-iso conditions, I think the others are fairly well matched aside from the various forms of image stabilization. The next point of comparison would be accesory prices, mainly lenses. Some brands may be higher priced than others, maybe significantly. Even if you dont intend to buy additional lenses right now you probably will eventually, avoid expensive surprised and compare up front. Consider camera handling, how well you like it (subjectively). Your not a pro traveling to the corners of the earth demanding miracles of your equipment, so honestly its probably hard to make a wrong turn in the DSLR market.

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Old Jan 18, 2006, 12:04 AM   #20
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WHOA, fellows!

Perhaps there is a MUCH LESS expensive solution here. GoBucks, rather than getting caught up in the dSLR serenade, which will cost you $1,000.00 to $1,200.00+, please stop for a minute and take a deep breath.

Please take a look at the Fuji F-10. It is a camera that is capable of ISO settings up to 1600. You might say, "OK, what can I do with that?" You can take photos without a flash, and the camera sells for LESS than $(US) 300.00! Are you interested yet? I hope that you are.

Here is asilk spinning factory photo taken with the Fuji F-10 WITHOUT flash. And, please remember, the cost of the Fuji F-10 camera is LESS THAN $(US) 300.00.

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