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Old Aug 12, 2007, 6:14 PM   #1
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I realize this is going to be a difficult question to cover, but here we go...

I really would like to purchase a dslr. I've narrowed my search to Canon...further narrowed my search to either the 30D or the 5D. Obviously major price difference, but I'd like to know the opinion of others on this matter. I've just started a company and plan to do some photography. I have very little experience in dslr's but am a geek and will learn quickly. I'd like to purchase the camera that makes sense. Do I suck it up and go with the 5D so that at least I have a solid base that I can expand upon? Or do I go with the 30D and perhaps find that I want more from my camera experience soon down the road?

Thanks for any advice you might be able to offer!
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Old Aug 12, 2007, 6:30 PM   #2
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Hi and welcome to Steve's forums!

It is going to come down to the sort photography you will want to be doing to if you will see any gain getting the 5D over the very capable 30D. I'm in the fortunate position that Iown both of these cameras and they both have their advantages depending on the sort of work I'm doing at the time. When shooting sports the the 30D is my primary with the 5D for backup on ready to go with a different lens option. The 30D is better as ithas 5fps (frames per second) and for alot of work the crop factor of the smaller sensor is a bonus making my long lenses longer (well appear to be).For weddings and portraits then the 5D wins with better resolution, full frame sensor so more dof control, in nasty low light conditions it is stronger and having what seems to be a huge viewfinder after using a crop camera is really nice.

Without knowing the sort of thing you want to shoot and the sizes you will want to print at my initial suggestion (which I'm happy to amend when I know more) is to get the 30D with some better lenses than the 5D and having to scrimp on the quality. Good glass and mid range body is better than basic glass on a top body.

The 30D is a great camera and if I wasn't moving into weddings and portraits would never have added it to my kit.

Can I just ask why you you have ruled out the very capable cameras from Nikon (D80 and D200) as well as Pentax's K10D which would be the other options that I would have on my list when starting off in the dSLR game.
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Old Aug 12, 2007, 6:33 PM   #3
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Lokster-

There is a rumor now circulating that asserts that Canon will announce a new Canon 40D sometime after the 21st of August. It is difficult to ascertain what this will do to the existing Canon 30D prices, but it could force them lower.

You might consider how that might affect your decision between the Canon 30D and the 5D. For some folks without any SLR background or a well grounded photography background, the learning curve involved in transitioning to a more comple DSLR camera like the 30D or the 5D, the learning curve can be measurably steep.

I have attached a selection of Canon 30D photos to give you an idea of what the camera is capable of producing.







Sarah Joyce
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Old Aug 13, 2007, 3:15 AM   #4
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Hmm, as Mark says it rather depends on the sort of photography you will be doing as to which is more attractive.

In my view the 30D is the last "all-rounder" in the Canon line-up. Then the line splits into "fine-art" with the 5D/1DsMkII and "action" with the 1DMkII/III.

I shot with a 20D for about 3 years and have had the 5D for about 6 months now.

For my purposes the 5D is better as my main interests are portrait and landscape work.

The general advantages of the 5D are a better viewfinder, bigger and easier to hold, more resolution, better dynamic range. At print sizes bigger than A4 you start to notice these things.

If you are into telephoto work the 30D holds one major advantage - a tighter angle of view for a given focal length. It's kindof a cheap way to get extra length out of your lenses. It has another minor advantage which is that it gives 5fps compared to the 3fps for the 5D. But then the 5D hasa couple of minor advantages too; a better AF system, and a deeper buffer.

If you're not planning on printing bigger than A4 then it's easy - go for the 30D.

One thing that did strike me about your post is that you seem to be of the opinion that photography is mainly about learning the camera. That's the easy bit to be honest. Learning to make great images takes much longer, and some people never get the hang of it no matter how much money they spend on equipment. Making a decent living out of photography is a separate issue yet again and has a great deal to do with how good you are at running a business, and somewhat less to do with how good a photographer you are.
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Old Aug 13, 2007, 7:47 AM   #5
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Lokster wrote:
Quote:
I've just started a company and plan to do some photography. I have very little experience in dslr's but am a geek and will learn quickly.
Lokster,

Out of curiosity, what kind off company? Is photography the main purpose for the company? If not, how does photography fit into the new company? If it is, what manner of photography do you intend to pursue?
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Old Aug 13, 2007, 10:55 PM   #6
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Thanks to you all for your replies... Some answers to some of your questions:
From my research I just felt I wanted to go with Canon. The company I've started will be dealing with design primarily, but photography has always been a hobby of mine, though I've never put the money up for a dslr (yet). So, photography will be playing into the business to some degree. Planned uses vary greatly. I'm going to be spending time on an aircraft carrier...so there will be action shots. Then I'm sure I'll be doing landscape and nature photography. Basically, my approach to this is that I want to purchase a camera that is going to carry my needs into the future. I know that the 30D requires different lenses than the 5D. Since I'm willing to spend the money, wouldn't the 5D make a good purchase since I would figure that the full frame sensor is the way of the future...eventually being intergrated into all models. Therefore, in the coming years as I expand my lenses, then at least I would be able to use the lenses for a new or different body rather than have to start over since I would only have the EF S style of lens. Thoughts?

Thanks again for all your advice!
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Old Aug 14, 2007, 2:45 AM   #7
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I don't think the full-frame sensor is ever going to be put into all of the DSLR cameras. It makes no sense to do it. The price of a FF sensor is about 10 times that of a 1.6 crop sensor even though it only has about 2.5 times the surface area.

Canon's biggest selling DSLR is the Rebel, and most likely always will be. Margins on that camera are fairly low and if they decided to go FF across the range they would not be able to compete on price with the other manufacturers. The smaller sensors deliver quality that is certainly good enough for its target market, allowing A3+ prints.

That is not to say Canon won't (even soon) have a bigger FF range. The 5D is very popular and there is every chance that they will segment the market even further. Many rumours for example of replacing the 5D with two cameras the 7D (or perhaps 5D mkII - cheaper than the current 5D and something like a 3D, more upmarket but not all the way to a 1 series).

But from your planned use I would think that a 5D sounds pretty good. Action shots yes, but not necessarily those that require very long lenses. After all if you can get close to the action or your subject is big (and a jet is much bigger than a sparrow) then you don't need such a long lens.

If you start off with a 5D + 24-105L and one of the 70-200 L zooms that should give you a pretty versatile starting set until you reach a point where you will know exactly what else you need.


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