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Old Sep 25, 2007, 3:32 PM   #1
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Hi all, first of let me say-what a great site this is! I've spent the last few hours having a good old nose around this sight,unfortunately it brought me no closer to deciding between buying a SLR or a good bridge camera. A little background info on me - I live in Scotland, I love taking pictures and have a pretty good eye for a good shot but am currently learning how to adjust the camera settings. I currently have a fuji s5500 but its just not up to the jobs I want to achieve eg blurred backgrounds, too long a time lag between pictures. I have a daughter who is on the autistic spectrum and when I am photographing her I need to be quick,or else she is off, multi burst would probably be good here, as she often looks at the camera, then away, then back again. A good zoom would also be great as it would allow me to give her her space and still get some detaled shots of her beautiful wee face
I will also be taking a lot of baby pictures as my sister is about to have a much longed for baby, the rest of my pictures will be the usual scenery, family photos, my craft work and no doubt hundreds of pictures of Disney World -we are heading over there at New Year!!
One of the things putting me off a slr is how easy they can get damaged(?) life with autism causes a few bumps and bruises, I also wouldn't be able to carry lots around with me as I need to have both hands free to deal with my daughter.
The cameras I am considering are Fuji s9600 and the sony cybershot, I am signed up for a indepth photography course but it doesn't start till January,as my holiday to Disney is before that I need to buy now. Money wise - $1300 is my max budget but obviously if I could spend less then that, it would be great!
many thanks for taking the time to read, hope you can help
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Old Sep 25, 2007, 3:38 PM   #2
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I should probably of added,that as I live in Scotland we dont get much sunshine so a lot of my pictures will be on dull, overcast days
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Old Sep 25, 2007, 4:48 PM   #3
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One of the good bridge/ultrazoom cameras (Sony, Canon, Panasonic, Fuji, Kodak) will do most of what you want. For Disney, they will be excellent, and can double up for video clips - the Canon S series is supposed to be the best, but I used my Sony H5 to good effect on two recent holidays to Australia and Florida, and made videos with stills of both holidays. Athough entry level DSLRs are great value now, you will have to pay a lot more to get a comparable zoom lens to the ultrazoom.

Its a different story for indoor pictures of your daughter - an entry level DSLR with kit lens will give far better results in low light conditions. You will not neccessarily need a long zoom for this type of photography. My route was ultrazoom followed by entry level DSLR. You will be able to learn a fair amount with an ultrazoom, then be in a better position to choose the right DSLR later if you take the same route. If you can find the older ultrazoom models at low prices, you may still be able to afford the DSLR in the near future. I'm sure that others will give advice which will be helpful to you, and the course will be very useful once you have purchased a better camera. My advice would be not to jump on the DSLR bandwagon until you are sure that you are ready for it and prepared to meet the extra costs.


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Old Sep 25, 2007, 5:36 PM   #4
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Haven't really looked at the canon s yet,will go do that now, thanks
re budget - hubby's buying it for me for the big 40 birthday! so if Im going to end up buying a slr, now would be the time to "hit" him for it, haha
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Old Sep 25, 2007, 5:53 PM   #5
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bonjen3 wrote:
Quote:
...but its just not up to the jobs I want to achieve eg blurred backgrounds, too long a time lag between pictures.
Sounds like you need a dSLR.

bonjen3 wrote:
Quote:
...multi burst would probably be good here ...
Again, I'm thinking 'dSLR'.


bonjen3 wrote:
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One of the things putting me off a slr is how easy they can get damaged(?)
I disagree. Though dSLRshave more moving parts than the typical P&S, those parts have been in use in SLRs for generations, made for people that demand reliability and quality, and so are probably more reliable than anything in your home (except, maybe, the doorknobs.)

bonjen3 wrote:
Quote:
A good zoom would also be great as it would allow me to give her her space and still get some detaled shots of her beautiful wee face
I will also be taking a lot of baby pictures as my sister is about to have a much longed for baby, the rest of my pictures will be the usual scenery, family photos, my craft work and no doubt hundreds of pictures of Disney World -we are heading over there at New Year!!
Check the EXIF data in the photos you've taken withyour Fuji S5500, but it sounds like most of what you'll be shooting is indoor/low light, andshort to medium focal length (say, 35mm flim cameraequivalent ofmaybe 35mm to maybe 90mm.) (During thetwo and one half years I lived in Scotland, I thinkIcan count on two hands thenumber of times Iused my telephoto lens.)

For indoor/low light, short to medium focal length, let's start looking at lenses first. (The prices are in US Dollars.) (I've limited this list to the lenses that won't put you over budget all by themselves.)

Sigma 28-70mm f/2.8 EX DG (Canon, Nikon except D40 or D40x, Pentax, Sigma & Sony) $329.00
Tamron SP 28-75mm f/2.8 XR Di LD-IF (Canon, Nikon except D40 or D40x, Pentax & Sony) $369.00
Sigma 24-60mm f/2.8 EX DG Aspherical (Canon, Nikon except D40 or D40x, Pentax, Sigma & Sony) $399.00
Olympus 14-54mm f/2.8-3.5 (Olympus) $409.95
Sigma 18-50mm f/2.8 EX DC Macro (Canon, Nikon & Olympus) $419.00
Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 EX Aspherical DG DF (Canon, Nikon except D40 or D40x, Pentax, Sigma & Sony) $429.00
Tamron SP AF 17-50mm f/2.8 XR DI-II LD Aspherical (IF) (Canon, Nikon except for D40 or D40x & Sony) $439.95
Tokina Pro DX AF 16-50mm f/2.8 (Canon & Nikon except D40 or D40x) $659.95
Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM (Canon) $929.00
Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM (Canon) $1,064.00
Nikon 17-55mm f/2.8G ED-IF AF-S DX (Nikon)$1,199.95

So, for less than $500 for a lens, your choices are narrowed to Sigma, Tamron and the Olympus 14-54. And a number of people in these forums (myself included) are big fans of the Tamron 17-50 f/2.8, which would limit your camera selection to Canons, Sonys and Nikons except the D40 and D40x.

The Olympus is an interesting choice because Olympus makes the smallest, lightest dSLRs on the market. That may be significant to you given all the other stuff you'll need to carry while trekking around Disney World with a small child.

Also, the Sigma 18-50 and the Nikon 17-55 are the only lenses on this list that will autofocus on the Nikon D40 or D40x. So as a result of the limited availablity of lenses for these cameras, I think you should make doubly sure you'll be able to do what you want if you buy one of them. Also, the D40 and D40x only have 3 autofocus points, which may not be enough to keep up with a small child. Other dSLRs have more.

Another consideration is shake reduction, though it goes by a lot of different names. It eliminates motion blur due to camera shake. Basically, there are two different technologies used to do that.

Oneuses an optical element in the lens to correct for camera shake, but that makes the lenses, bigger, heaver, and more expensive. Canon and Nikon use this form of shake reduction.

The other technology shifts the image sensor in the camera body to correct for camera shake. This will work with any lens that might be connected to your camera, so you only have to pay for it once. Pentax, Sony and the Olympus E-510 use this form of shake reduction.
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Old Sep 26, 2007, 2:16 AM   #6
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many thanks for all your advise, I will spend the next day or so looking up the various points you have raised , Ill post after I've done so,me more homework
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Old Sep 26, 2007, 10:11 AM   #7
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Don't stay away too long, and if you haven't already noticed, if you have a question, there are lots of people here that areready and willing to answer itfor you.
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