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sdtravels Jul 4, 2012 8:30 AM

dlsr evil or compact digital
I have had an slr for 30 years, took a while to convert to dslr but I have loved it. Now that I am older :) I am looking to not carrying a body and two lenses plus my husband's dslr body. My husband bought a Canon sx230 and now I am jealous of the size. I was always a Minolta fan and so now have 2 Sony alphas. I am going on safari and am limited in how much I can take with me. I got my first 300mm zoom when I went on safari in 1987. I would stick with dslr but I want a lens that gets closer yet. The Canon sx230 has a 14x lens but I haven't been totally thrilled with the low light results. The Canon SX40 with a 35x lens (800mm) sure looks tempting. Surprisingly, I usually use the program mode on the cameras so I don't really need lots of control. Ok, a long winded way of asking....what should I buy? I don't suppose many people "step down" from an slr, but given I am going to, what will make me the least unhappy?

Mark A400 Jul 4, 2012 1:01 PM

I think you would love the SX40. I'm still using my old S3(earlier version of sx40) and it was a fantastic shooter for my recent trip to Venice. We had an s95 for low light shooting.

Ozzie_Traveller Jul 4, 2012 5:53 PM

G'day SD


Originally Posted by sdtravels (Post 1309601)
I have had an slr for 30 years, took a while to convert to dslr but I have loved it. Now that I am older :) I am looking to not carrying a body and two lenses .... I am going on safari and am limited in how much I can take with me. .... The Canon SX40 with a 35x lens (800mm) sure looks tempting. Surprisingly, I usually use the program mode on the cameras .... what should I buy? I don't suppose many people "step down" from an slr, but given I am going to, what will make me the least unhappy?

Aahhhh - what a set of decisions to be made ;) ;)

For me - after 40+ years with film SLRs and a bevy of lenses from 24mm to 1000mm, I bought my 1st digi > it was a fuji S5000 with 14x zoom. Living in Australia, my big safari was up north to the Kakadu world heritage NP. Loved the camera and its capabilities and its zoom lens - 35-500mm equiv. When I returned home I donated 2x slr bodies + 4 lenses + peripherals to the local college where photography was a major in their course structure, and I have rarely regretted it

Where does this get you ...

I say "go for it" - whether it's the canon SX40 or the Lumix FZ150 stop mucking around and get one or the other. Each has the same base setup, tho we have the Lumix in preference to the Canon as we find the Lumix menus & its buttons easier to use than the canon rotary dial.

and btw - don't be shy for using "P" mode .... some non-photo types tell me on the quiet that it stands for "Professional mode". More seriously, it is a good mode for day-to-day shooting, tho "S" and "A" do have their uses as the subject matter changes to and fro :rolleyes:

Regards, Phil

ramcewan Jul 9, 2012 10:46 AM

Your intro sounds like someone perfect for a mirror-less system camera like the Olympus Pen and OMD, Sony Nex, Panasonic G and Samsung NX cameras. Many folks have come from a SLR/DSLR background to the mirror-less system to cut down on kit size and been very happy with the results. I can pack my Olympus E-PL2, kit lens, two or three primes, and a 45-200mm all in my crumpler 4 million dollar home bag which is about the size of my wife's purse. With the many fast primes you can get excellent low light results. You are also able to use older legacy 35mm lenses on mirror-less camera bodies with cheap and widely available adapters due to the short register distance.

The down side is the biggest zooms top out at 300mm. However due to sensor crop this is an equivalent field of view to a 600mm for 35mm.

That said I would highly recommend checking these cameras out, they have larger sensors which will give you dslr quality but at a much smaller size and weight.

SIMON40 Jul 9, 2012 1:45 PM

An EVIL camera will potentially yield superior results (all else being equal) than a bridge camera- however,if it's reach your after- then an EVIL with appropriate lens attached would cease to be "bijou"...!
The option to go from a wide angle to a very large telephoto in a second or so makes a bridge camera a very compelling option- and ever improving sensor/processor technology is improving their low light abilities also.
Fuji's X-S1 might be worth consideration if you cannot do without a manual zoom akin to a DSLR- with excellent build quality and a 24-624mm equivalent reach.
The Canon SX40hs certainly has a superb reach- 24-840mm- and has very good image quality across a variety of situations.
Panasonic's FZ-150 is certainly one to consider if you think 25-600mm equivalent reach is enough for your needs. With good build quality,despite it's lightweight proportions,superb video modes,super fast autofocus and burst modes etc.... and in my humble opinion,is still the bridge to beat..... :)

ramcewan Jul 9, 2012 2:53 PM

SIMON40 - what is the crop factor on the SX40HS and the X-S1?

I personally find that the quoted equivalence is a meaningless figure for nature work where the goal is to actually bring a distant object closer, or a property of the lens I generally refer to as magnification. What I mean is the magnification of a 300mm lens is the same whether it is mounted on a 35mm Film SLR, Full Frame DSLR, APS-C DSLR, or Four Thirds sensor equipped mirror-less. The field of view is different between all but the first two due to sensor size. However at the end of the day the ability to bring a distant object closer is a property of the lens, not the sensor. For this reason I have always found this idea of quoting equivalence numbers as silly. I would bet that the actual magnification of those two bridge camera's lenses is much less than a 300mm micro four thirds (EVIL) zoom or a 300mm DSLR lens.

I would therefore not recommend a bridge camera. I think the loss in quality is too much. If you want to go from zoom to wide quickly there are a couple of expensive 14-150mm lenses out there for micro four thirds, but I would bet the op is comfortable enough coming from DSLR to go with Panasonic 100-300mm or Olympus 75-300mm and a kit lens plus some primes.

SIMON40 Jul 9, 2012 4:59 PM

Hi ramcewan- there is no crop factor per se' on the SX40 and the X-S1
The zoom the SX40 gives is what you'd get in old school 35mm equivalent.
The 24-840 zoom is what you'd get on a full frame camera- or 35mm film- with a 24-840mm lens attached.
On an APS-C DSLR,such as Canons 600D- you'd need a 15-525mm lens attached to match up to the range of the SX40..!!
On a 4/3 camera- such as a G3- you'd need a 12-420mm lens attached...!!
In other words- the Canon's 24-840mm is what it says on the tin- as is the 24-624mm on the Fuji X-S1.
Here's a link to an older post on here- I put up to give people an idea as to the 24-840mm zoom of the Canon SX40...

Ozzie_Traveller Jul 9, 2012 5:34 PM

G'day again SD

In our household "she" currently has the Panny FZ100 & "he" has the Fuji X-s1 + we have his/hers panasonic G2 cameras with several lenses

+- Her FZ and his X-s1 are used 99% of the time - the SLR's are used very rarely as the other 2 cameras are so good
+- She finds the FZ fits her hand / eye & weight very nicely, but finds his X-s1 big & heavy...
+- He finds her FZ 'nice & ok but a bit small' for his hand/ fingers ...

"she" is off to Africa in Oct for a 21-day safari - and it's the FZ that's travelling with her > not the G2 + its bevy of lenses covering the same sort of range as the FZ

As I mentioned earlier - "get on with it mate" and enjoy the results
Regards, Phil

sdtravels Jul 9, 2012 8:30 PM

Wow, thanks for a great discussion! Thinking about all you have said, I think I am ruling out the EVIL. Part of the inconvenience of the dslr is changing lenses. That's why I carry 2 bodies. Both have zooms, but one is short range and one is long: just so I don't have to change lenses. Getting an EVIL doesn't get me much more than I have except cutting down some on the weight. Also I could get any bridge camera AND a camera that handles low light as( MarK A400 posted) for the price of the EVIL. So I think it's either lug the dslr or get a bridge. My husband now is thinking that I take the dslr and he take the bridge. Oh, well. I have some time so I watch for sales and I bet there will be a newer version out there before we go. At lease now I have narrowed down my options. I'll check out the other bridge cameras you all have mentioned. Thank you so much!

Photo 5 Jul 9, 2012 10:15 PM

I know this is late in the discussion but I was in your shoes ( I own a Pentax K-5 with an 18-250mm lens, 28-75mm and a 50mm) I'd be looking at the Fuji HS30 as a serious contender. I'd make sure to have a lens hood for it (My HS20 shipped without one), 3 batteries and 4x 32GB cards for the trip. The HS30 is a little big but based on my experiences with the HS20 and what I have read on the HS30 its a great camera and even has a very good 2x digital zoom feature. With that said its also lighter than most D-SLR bodies and your lightest lens.

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