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Old Jun 28, 2007, 1:20 AM   #1
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Hello All I was hoping to ask for some help. What I will be shooting is fairly wide, ocean shots, boats, sunsets on the water, landscapes, people but not portraits and plants and trees in the forest and some wildlife. As far as budget I have up to around $2500, but could maybe push towards 3000, but that will have to include all accessories. I have no investment in any brand right now.


I've been looking at the Canon 30D and the Nikon D80 and I've also been looking at what lenses to go with, depending on which camera I get, and would like to see your suggestions. I know people are going to say that I should be comparing the 30D with the D200 and the D80 with the XTI. The reason I am comparing these 2 together is I've handled the xti, D80, 30D, D200 and pentax 10D, and theXTI is too small for me, the 10D is quite nice but I'm worried about lenses choices and what might happen in the future. As far as the D200 goes, I could afford it but then I wouldn't have as much left over for lenses and it might be getting a little too far ahead for me skill wise. This brings me to the other two. The 30d I can get for about $1600 (can) with a 17-85 IS lens not including taxes. The other 2 lenses I was thinking of is the 28-135 or the 70-300 IS Usm for a zoom. As far as Nikon goes I can get the D80 with 18-70 (I realize no VR) for about $1450 before taxes. The lenses I was thinking of as an alternative are the 18-135, or the 24-120 and for a zoom the 70-300 vr lens. Also to throw a wild card into the mess is the Tamaron 18-250, and if anyone has any suggestions for a macro lens that would be great.


I know the 30D is a little higher rated than the D80, but as far as the lenses go the 18-70 is a little higher rated than the 17-85 and the 70-300 vr is higher than the canon version (info from slr gear, don't know if this is a good one to go by?). I guess what I'm looking for is good (but not too expensive) camera with good lenses that I can spend the next few years growing into and still getting good pic's. I don't see myself investing in the higher end lenses at least not for the next few years, as I want to spend the time learning and enjoying. I hope I haven't been too long and want to thank you in advance for any help and or better suggestions.


Dave





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Old Jun 28, 2007, 7:27 AM   #2
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The cameras that you've narrowed your selection downto are bothquite good, and Canon and Nikon dSLRs both have quite a broad selection of lenses, from the camera manufacturers, third parties (Sigma, Tamron, Tokina), and on the used market. Any attempt to distinguish between them would be like splitting hairs.

Given that you've already selected two fine cameras, I'd say that the deciding factor should be how they feel to you. When you hold them, do they both feel comfortable? ... do the important controls fall naturally under your index finger and thumb? ... can you comfortably and securely hold them at odd angles?

If you aren't physically comfortable with the camera, you'll be less likely to use it as often as you might otherwise.
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Old Jun 28, 2007, 8:55 AM   #3
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Good camera choices!

If you are after the wide angle shots remember that all the cameras in this range have a small aps-c sized sensor with a crop factor. Canon is 1.6, nikon is 1.5, that makes the apparent field of view narower. So the field of view in that lens at 17mm will look more like a 27mm lens on a 35mm camera.

You may want to be looking at some of the digital only lenses like the Canon EFs 10-22 or Sigma DG 10-22mm.
Only drawback is these lenses cannot be used on a full frame camera like a normal 35mm film camera or a Canon 1Ds.

I mentioned canon because that is what I use, I am not sure what Nikon has in this range (the sigma is availble in a nikon mount)

Peter.
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Old Jun 28, 2007, 9:58 PM   #4
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Thanks TCAV and Peter for your comments. I Agree Peter I will have to look at getting another lens like you say and that will be another one that I will have to add into for the total cost. What do you think about the lenses that I can get with either camera as kit lenses, the 18-70 Nikon or the 17-85 for the Canon? Would it be better to go with the 18-135 (N) or 18-55 or 28-135 (C)?

Dave
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Old Jun 28, 2007, 10:53 PM   #5
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I'm not a fan of the highratio lenses like you mention (18-135, etc.) and superzooms (like 28-300, 50-500, etc.). The lens designers have to get around a lot issues by making compromises to make a lens like lthat work at all its focal lengths. They are doing great jobs but the lenses are never as good optically as the standard zooms or prime lenses.

All of my lenses like the 17-35, 28-75, 120-300 have a zoom ratio of 2.5 or less (max FL/min FL)and I make use of primes where I really need a sharp high performance lens.

Can't really answer about the kit lenses as I've never used one, but I have heard from others they are OK lenses.

Hay I just realized you are in Canada!
Look up a new Canadian quaterly mag on the stands, "Outdoor Photography Canada"
The current issue going out is #2 and it should be hitting the stands next week! The issue highlights Western Canada shooting locations!

http://www.outdoorphotographycanada.com/

(I am not affiliated with them, just think it is great to have a mag like this of our own)

Peter.
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Old Jun 28, 2007, 11:39 PM   #6
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Thanks Peter, Yep On the Wet Coast Island. With all the walking I do, I'm just trying to minimze the amount of weight I'd be carrying by hopefully on having a couple of lenses. I'll definately check out the mag.

Dave
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Old Jun 29, 2007, 6:37 AM   #7
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Kit lenses tend to be only good enough to sell the camera bodies.

For the range you're talking about, the Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 might be a much better choice. It's also a much better indoor/low light lens.
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Old Jun 29, 2007, 4:21 PM   #8
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Quote:
Yep On the Wet Coast Island. With all the walking I do, I'm just trying to minimze the amount of weight I'd be carrying by hopefully on having a couple of lenses.
If that's the case you could take a look as well at the new Olympus E-510. Though it is as small as the XTi, you might find there's more room on the grip.

The new Olympus models seem to overall be at least a match for the D80 or 30D in image quality, and Olympus does offer a lighter weight solution overall, plus the in body IS in the E-510 makes it great for a walkaround camera. And I think they have some of the best wide angle lenses (esp. the 11-22 and 7-14--that's 22-44 and 14-28 equivalent).

One drawback I see there is if you want to do many of those outdoor shots in bright sunlight, such as those beach and boat shots, and want straight from the camera jpeg without postprocessing. The Olympus models do have too much of a tendency to clip highlights in contrasty light, like bright sunlight, when shooting jpeg. So you have to eiher shoot raw, or turn down the contrast and underexpose a bit.

The other drawback is if you are more of a traditionalist, a camera like the D80 or 30D offers less modern features (like live view, dust reduction, in camera IS), but more traditional controls, two command dials, top LCD, a better viewfinder, and mechanical focus rings.

Also, some of the more interesting offerings from Olympus won't be out until around November, including a new "pro" model and their new 12-60 f2.8-4.0 SWD and 50-200 f2.8-3.5 SWD lenses. And there will likely be new offerings from Canon and Nikon by then as well (I suspect a replacement for that 30D sometime soon).

With regard to Nikon, while I'm not a big fan of those extreme zooms either, the Nikon 18-200 VR is likely the best of that type, and probably gets the edge over the Tamron.

Finally in your price range, some of the best glass is going to be the Canon "L" glass. If you are looking to keep the weight down for those lenses, consider the f4 "L" glass rather than the bigger and heavier f2.8glass. It sounds as though you are shooting mostly out of doors anyway? The Canon 70-200 f4 comes in both IS ($1000) and non-IS ($530) versions. And it will easily beat those consumer 70-300 zooms for IQ. A good reason to consider the 30D. The 17-40 f4 L might make a good partner, but in this case the Tamron 17-50 f2.8 might be a worthy substitue.

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Old Jun 30, 2007, 2:02 AM   #9
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Thanks Kenbalbari, I think I miss lead abit about the weight issue. What I was reffering to was more about carrying 3-4 lens and especially the heavier 2.8 l series lens, even though I can't afford those right now. I hadn't really thought about the Olympus, so I will check it out.

As far as the lens you talked about the IS model is more like $1400 up here, but the non-Is 70-200 goes for about $650 and the review is quite good on that one. Your suggestion about the 17-40 is also good, the only thing I'm concerned with is covering the gap between the 2 lenses. I don't know whether to get the 17-85 and maybe the 70-200, thoughts? Also I looked to see what Nikon has as an equivalents, but nothing is really jumping out at me, any alternative suggestions there? Thanks again for all the ideas, one day my head will stop spinning, I hope.
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Old Jun 30, 2007, 10:39 AM   #10
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I have looked seriously (myself) at the Nikon D80, Canon 30D and the Pentax K10D.

Nikon D80 :

Pluses + minuses:
  • 10 + mps[/*]
  • great selection of lens[/*]
  • great reviews about pix taking capabilities[/*]
  • body seems plasticky to me[/*]
  • no sensor dust cleaner[/*]
  • VR not in body-have to pay extra every time you buy a VR lens[/*]
  • body not weather resistant sealed like D200 or K10D
    [/*]
Canon 30D:
  • rugged metal body[/*]
  • great selection of lens[/*]
  • only 8.2 mps but pix taking reviews excellent[/*]
  • heavy-but I willing accept as trade off for rugged body[/*]
  • no sensor dust cleaner[/*]
  • VR not in body- have to pay extra for VR in lens-everytime you buy a lens[/*]
  • body not sealed as well as K10D
    [/*]
Pentax K10D:
  • 10+ mps[/*]
  • rugged
    [/*]
  • good, not as wide selection of digital lens-but compensates somewhat in that it can fit 24 million lens mades for screw mount and bayonet mount Pentax, etc. lens- can also get good deals on older top lens that will fit[/*]
  • heavy- but willing to accept as trade off for rugged body-although I think the 30D probably is the most rugged of the three, K10D second and D80 third. Just MO[/*]
  • sensor dust cleaner[/*]
  • VR in body-so it works with any lens that doesn't have VR in lens-save bucks ![/*]
  • body well sealed[/*]
I have handled all three cameras and I find the Nikon and Pentax most comfortable for my large hands. Important to be comfortable.

I don't think you can go wrong with any of these cameras-they're all top notch IMO

I was worried about Pentax's future, like you, but in talking and reading during the past year I feel more assured. Pentax has merged with Hoya- apparently a huge optical company that makes a lot of lens blanks for Nikon and Canon. Pentax is also very big in scientific and medical opticals. If you have had an operation and they have used an internal lens, chances are it was made by Pentax.

The thing that gave me the jitters was the demise of Minolta-Konica...
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