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Old Jan 15, 2007, 11:56 PM   #1
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Hello All,
I have been going through for so long now its ridiculous. I have read a bunch of posts here and on other forums and the smaller discussions on Flickr etc. If the question is only about Camera vs. Camera, I am seeing K10D or D80 (chill before you flame). But I haven't seen any real discussions on scope of use etc. The ones I am working around with (in my head) are:
  1. Pentax K100D[/*]
  2. Nikon D70s[/*]
  3. Canon EOS 400D/ Rebel XTI[/*]
  4. Pentax K10D[/*]
  5. Sony DSLR Alpha 100[/*]
I am an amateur enthusiast, I guess. These terms are so subjective and vague (IMHO). I had started out with a Canon G3 and after 3 years feel limited and need to make the jump. I can't decide whether its time to spend on the $1000 cameras with one (maybe two) lens or to get started with one of the $500 ones. I was thinking with the K100D, get going with 1 lens and then get 1-2 more and build up enough to then move up to what Pentax throws out (potentially) in 2-3 years (in a higher level than K10D as well). The other thing that has me all caught is the Shake Reduction. I am really torn on that and that's why I was really hesitant to even add the XTI to this list, but am a big time Canon fan.

What do you guys think? I know this could be a weird question, but I wonder if others out there plan their camera investments as well?

Thank you.
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Old Jan 16, 2007, 3:22 AM   #2
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I was in a similar situation as you. I was a amateur photographer using Canon P&S cameras ever since I started digital photography. I was looking to move into the DSLR world, and had the same predicament. I chose a Pentax *ist DL for two reasons. Cost was my primary concern. The *ist DL was very cheap at the time, so that was great for my "starving college student" budget. Second was the lens selection/cost. There are lots of old lenses that work with Pentax DSLR, not to mention cheap (though some may disagree with this statement). I had a plan to buy the camera with the kit lens, then slowly build up a library of lenses as I needed.

Was I happy with my decision? Yes, but I also was a bit frustrated. The local camera shop I frequented did not sell Pentax lenses (apart from their scant used lens shelf), so for the longest time I've been frustrated trying to find lenses locally. It was sometimes embarassing going into that shop talking Pentax. Looking at the other DSLRs with higher MP count also felt like a bummer; but once I started taking some great shots with the camera, I've ignored the MP count debate. I shoot to share on the web, so top-notch everything wasn't required.

Would I get another Pentax DSLR? You bet! I'm actually saving up to get a K100D now for the image stabilization. Would I consider getting a different brand? Sure. The XTi does feel better in my hand and has a quieter focus mechanism, but cost is my main priority. I've got some glass for my Pentax camera now, so it's becoming harder to leave.

For me, the *ist DL was a great camera to get my DSLR sea-legs. Maybe someday I might step up to a more expensive DSLR, but for now I'm happy with Pentax.

That's how my story ended up; however, It's hard to make a choice based off people's experiences. The best way to decide is to try out the cameras and see if it would work for you
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Old Jan 16, 2007, 6:55 PM   #3
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Any recommendations?
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Old Jan 16, 2007, 9:37 PM   #4
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don't buy Sony unless you have to.

Nikon d40/d70, Pentax k10d/k100d, Canon XT/XTi - all great cameras.
Canons have poor kit lens which makes them more expensive because you need to upgrade the lens. With Nikon and Pentax you get very good kit lens.
also consider used body/lens if money is an object.
My first DSLR was well used Canon 300d.
I still use it but thinking to upgrade after 2 years with it.
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Old Jan 16, 2007, 10:18 PM   #5
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I actually just started researching the D40.

I am now settled on the K100D out of the original bunch. The K10D/XTI et al are all out.

D40 or K100D fellas?
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Old Jan 16, 2007, 10:51 PM   #6
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It partly depends on what you want to do with the camera. I have both the K100 and the K10 and will be keeping both of them. I'm one of those who loves SR - I went from having a certain amount of camera shake on many pictures at 200mm without SR (had a DS before the K100) to often using a 300mm lens handheld (in good light).

Don't get caught up in the mp race - more is not necessarily better (there are some exceptions to that). I've taken pictures with both cameras, resized the full frame pictures to fit here on the forum and you can't tell which was taken with the 10 mp and which with the 6 mp. Printing up to 8x10 would probably be similar, not all that much difference (6 mpbeing plenty foroutstanding pictures). However, if you are into wildlife and birding, you'll probably be cropping a lot, and the extra mp come in handy for that (advantage to K10 only if you are into wildlife or birds, or printing large posters, otherwise disregard this difference).

The K100 is more capable in low light - there is less noise at 1600 than with the K10. The K100 also has ISO 3200, though it is pretty noisy and you'll a fair amount of detail when you get rid of the noise. If you are going to be printing 4x6 it won't be that big of a deal. Advantage K100.

The K10 is heavier than the K100 - that may or may not be important to you. For a (to me) heavy camera, I find that it handles nicely but that's an individual thing. Best idea would be to go to a camera store and handle all the cameras you are thinking about to see if one feels better than another.

K100 has a nice selection of controls, though some are in menus, but I don't change some of them very often so it doesn't really bother me. The K10 has more controls available on the camera body and an incredible number of adjustments and controls available. That's a mixed blessing - its great for someone who knows what they are doing but it can be intimidating/confusing for someone who's just starting out in the dSLR world. It has a much bigger learning curve than the K100 does. The weather sealing is great for those who are outdoors people, but might not be very important for others.

Unless you have a need for some of the specialized features of the K10, my recommendation would be to get the K100 now, then gradually add some nice lenses. Those lenses will last a lot longer than the camera will (I'm happily taking pictures with lenses I bought in 1980!). Besides, a mediocre lens on a great camera will never take more than a mediocre to goodpicture, while an outstanding lens on a 6 mp camera canpotentially give you an outstanding picture.

My opinion is tobuy a less expensive camera and put the extra money into lenses, regardless of the brand of camera you buy. I still use the Pentax kit lens quite often, it's a good valueconsidering how little they charge for it.

All of the cameras listed will take excellent pictures, and you really can't go wrong with any of them.
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Old Jan 18, 2007, 2:50 PM   #7
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Thank you.
I have ordered the K100D and hope to have it in by Monday, with the kit lens.

What other lenses would you guys recommend? I love portrait photography, but the ones I saw on eBay the 70mm and 55mm (i think...) were like $400 - $500
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Old Jan 19, 2007, 11:16 PM   #8
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Read some of the info on kenrockwell.com. He has some great information. I would buy the D40 hands down. Save up some money and later purchase the 18-200 mm VR lens. As technology changes, you replace the body and keep the lens.
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Old Jan 19, 2007, 11:41 PM   #9
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I agree with your premise about lenses surviving the camera. However, we are now entering the second year that the Nikkor 18-200mm VR lens has been in production. it is still just as difficult to get as it was a year ago. How do you explain that?

MT/Sarah
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