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Old Jan 16, 2007, 2:20 AM   #1
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I currently have a Canon Powershot S45 which is a great camera, but recently have become really interested in photography and looking to upgrade to an SLR. I like thesound of the Canon 400D or the Nikon D40, but I really have no idea what to look for in an SLR and which one would be best for me.

The main things I will be photographing will be people, pets and my miniature bears and animals that I make (do I need a special macro lens for thisor is there a macro setting on SLR cameras?)

Also, is it worth me buying extra lenses in addition to the kit lense? Or should I wait and see how I go first.

Thanks to anyone who can help.


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Old Jan 16, 2007, 2:59 AM   #2
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If you have been happy with your Canon then it does make some sense to stick with Canon when you upgrade. The cameras share the digital processing unit, so in JPG mode you can get a similar look.

As to the Macro, chances are you will not need a dedicated macro lens unless your miniature bears are really small. If you want full-frame shots of anything much smaller than an AA battery then you will want to look at a specialist macro lens.

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Old Jan 16, 2007, 9:05 AM   #3
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Any of the budget dSLRs will work for you - all of them take excellent pictures. I happen to have the Pentax K100 and love it, but either the Canon or the Nikon will give you equally high quality pictures. The ability to focus closely is controlled by the lens, not the camera, so you would want a separate macro lens if you want to get tiny details. I don't know how big your minatures are or how much fine detail you want to show, but it sounds like you might want to invest in one (I like one of the macro lenses that are around 100mm - you can stand off a bit and still get all kinds of detail. Several manufacturers make lenses in this range that are all very sharp).

To help make a decision, go to a camera store and play with cameras in your price range - see if you prefer one over the other. In this category of camera the differences are small and how they feel in your hands (can you reach all the controls, is the camera heavy and going to make your arm ache if you carry it around all day etc.) can be very important.

I'd suggest getting the camera with the kit lens first and using it for a while. Then you'll have an idea if you'll want a macro or a longer zoom, though it sounds like you may be a good candidate for a macro lens.

P.S. Forgot to mention - the reason you might want to look at the Pentax K100 is that they have image stabilization built into the camera body - all lenses you buy (including the kit lens) would be stabilized, while the Nikon and Canon build their stabilization into the lenses, which are more expensive. That might or might not be important - depends on the person.

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