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-   -   Sony A300 or Canon XSI (

thewingman May 7, 2008 10:50 AM

Has come to a choice of these 2. Lets hear your best recomendations. Will be used all kinds of pictures. Want something the can auto focus rarther fast for candid shots and shots while ride down the road on motorcycle.

JimC May 7, 2008 11:22 AM

I'm not sure I'd want to try using either one while riding down the road on a motorcyle. Are you sure you want to try shooting that way using a dSLR, versus a smaller and lighter point and shoot model?

Both have their pros and cons and both are going to have fast Autofocus for entry level cameras. If Live View is important, the Sony is very good in this area, since it's new design allows the camera's main Autofocus Sensors to see the same image as the Live View sensor, without the drawbacks associated with Contrast Detection Autofocus using a camera's main sensor, or the need to flip the mirror back and forth to Autofocus using the main AF sensors before returning to Live View mode. With the Sony you can use Live View at the same time the camera is focusing with it's dedicated 9 point AF sensor (and it will even show you selected focus points in the Live View display on the LCD).

But, you sacrifice viewfinder size if you go that route (Sony had to make the viewfinder smaller in order to make room for the separate Live View sensor used in this model). If Live View is not very important, I'd look at the A200 instead (same 10MP sensor and features as the A300, except that it has a larger viewfinder and doesn't get live view or the tilt out display). The Canon looks like it may have it beat for a features perspective (but, it's a more expensive camera, too).. Of course, you get stablization with all lenses using the Sony if that's important to you. The Sony also has higher available ISO speeds (up to 3200) if you need it. Sometimes a bit more noise is better than motion blur.

Note that I currently shoot with a Sony A700. So, I'm probably biased a bit that direction (I think Sony has done a very good job with these new models from a performance and image quality perspective).

JimC May 7, 2008 11:36 AM


Make sure to see Steve's new XSi review if you haven't looked at it already.

Both of these cameras are going to be capable of taking nice photos in most conditions. The 18-55mm IS lens in the XSi kit is probably a bit better lens compared to the 18-70mm kit lens with the A300. But, then again, you've got more focal range from wide to long with the Sony kit lens. There a pros and cons to any of them, and you probably want to factor in any special lens requirements into the equation.

Some of Sony's newer lenses are more expensive (depending on the grade of lens you're looking for, since they don't offer a "middle" grade lens in some focal lengths). But, these Sony dSLR models can use any Minolta Autofocus lens ever made, and popular vendors of used gear like, and usually have a very good selection of them. Third party lens manufacturers like Sigma and Tamron also have a good selection of lenses available for the Alpha lens mount (a.k.a., Minolta A, Minolta Autofocus, Dynax, Maxxum lens mount)

thewingman May 7, 2008 8:03 PM

anymore opinons? Really leaning toward Sony A300. Good choice guy's and gal's?:cool:

TCav May 7, 2008 8:14 PM

thewingman wrote:

...Want something the can auto focus rarther fast for ... shots while ride down the road on motorcycle.
I'd go with something a little smaller and lighter and for one handed use. A dSLR, even a dSLR with 'Live View', will require more attention than I'd like to see a motorcycle rider devoting to photography, not to mention the ocassional two-handed operation.

thewingman May 7, 2008 8:16 PM

wifie would be doing any shoots off bike. I'm not that crazy.

TCav May 7, 2008 8:38 PM

I would still go with something smaller and lighter (Not to mention cheaper. That way you're not out very much incase it gets dropped.), but you pose a situation where the Sony would excel beyond the Canon.

Image stabilization is designed to correct image blur due to camera shake. Put a camera on a motorcycle, and you'd be inducing a not insignificant amount of camera shake. The Sony uses sensor shift image stabilization in the camea body, so it's available for any lens. The Canon uses optical image stabilization in certain lenses, which makes them bigger, heavier, and more expensive.

That would do it for me.

mtngal May 7, 2008 10:55 PM

When Pentax came out with the in-camera stabilization on the K100 (about 2 years ago, I think), someoneshot a series of pictures taken from the seat of a riding lawn-mower, some with SR and some without. The difference was very significant, so the Sony (which has a similar system) would make a lot of sense.

caf120 May 7, 2008 11:26 PM

I'd say go for Canon XSI, these days my friend upgraded his old Sony, and it's on sale for only $765 at that time, not sure if it's still availabe


and i used it for about 2 days.
I find it slightly better then my XTi with the live view and it just feels better in your hands and has more "power".
i say buy this camera, and you start off with a good lens right away without having to upgrade.

ToiletDuck May 8, 2008 1:07 AM

The Sony with the in camera IS is a great setup. The newer Sony lens might run a little more but with Sony you can use the older Minolta lens. The best lens out there are the older minolta glass. For $200 you can get the best lens. I just got the Minolta 70-210 beercan and it's amazing! They have several extremely good prime lens to. I tried them all it seems like. From the Pentax, Canon, Nikon, to the Sony I have to say it's the best feeling for me.

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