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Old Jan 8, 2008, 9:00 PM   #1
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I want to take pictures that will be used in brochures and other print media. From what I've been told, I need at least 7 MP to produce higher resolution (300dpi in print). My present camera, Canon A85 is just 4 MP (I think). I'm happy with the simplicity of the Canon A series--if a camera has too many features, I can't remember how to use them from one time to the next.

I'm wondering if I need an dSLR or just a better, more modern, higher MP camera. I looked at the Canon G9--would I need the .raw image format---would that increase the options from the print/design standpoint (I plan to have a graphic designer put together the brochure layout). We're willing to spend about $500, but would pay more if I thought I would actually use the features.

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Old Jan 8, 2008, 9:35 PM   #2
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ss-

The final choice is of course entirely yours. However, you requirements are none the less, rather demanding. Therefore I am going to suggest that you take a good look at the Nikon D-40.

Even with just the Nikkor 18-55mm, so called "kit lens" this camera is apotent competitor. I could indeed be wrong, but Ithink this is the sharpness and clarity that you require for your needs.

Here is a sample phone taken with the Nikon and the kit lens (the Nikkor 18-55mm lens) Examine it closely please. I sincerely believe that this is the kind of quality you are looking for in your camera choice. Please let me know what you think? Thanks!

Sarah Joyce
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Old Jan 9, 2008, 10:12 AM   #3
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spending more doesn't necessarily have to do with features - it has to do with pic quality. i have never seen any digicam that takes pics that are as high quality as a dslr. i've worked with print, and i wouldn't consider using a non-dslr for any pic larger than a large thumb.

if you're spending $500, you could get a samsung gx-is, which is a good camera if you shoot raw - very nice results - but 6 megapixels may not be enough for your needs. if you can go with 6 megapixels, mtclimber's suggestion is also a good one. if you need more megapixels AND brochure quality, i suspect you'll have to either buy a used camera or raise your price. if you go up a bit in price, you could get a rebel XT, pentax K10D or samsung gx-10 for well under $1000.

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Old Jan 9, 2008, 10:50 AM   #4
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Thanks for the replies.

I guess I should look at the dSLR cameras, and be willing to pay more. When you mentioned Pentax, I remembered that I have my old Pentax K1000 print camera (that I never use)---but was wondering if print camera lenses can be used on dSLR's (and which brands would be compatible, if so). I'm especially interested in whether I could use my Tamron wide-angle lens (SP17mmF/3.5 Model 151B)--I paid a lot for that some years back, and it would be great to use it more.

Does the Canon Rebel XT have the DIGIC III technology? Wasn't sure about that found reading the website here. Sounds like an older model....maybe not as good? (I ask because a co-worker was using the Rebel, and my daughter has a Rebel print SLR that she loves).

I looked at reviews of CAnon EOS 40D 10.1 MP---anybody familiar with that one? You mentioned the Nikon D-40 (6 MP)---I had looked at the Nikon D40X (10.2 MP) review, and am considering that, too.

Any thoughts/comments would be greatly appreciated.

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Old Jan 9, 2008, 1:30 PM   #5
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Right now, the Pentax K100D Super is an especially good buy because of a $100 rebate, but that offer expires the end of the month. And I don't know what lenses you've got, but I'm fairly certain that others here will tell you that they will work fine on a Pentax dSLR. That will save you a lot of money getting started. Unfortunately, the K100D Super is also a 6MP camera. The K10D (10MP) has a $100 rebate offer also, which means you can buy it for less than $600, and probably still use the lenses you already have.

For publication, I'd say that, for newspaper quality, 6MP is plenty, but for magazine quality, you really should get something with a higher resolution. Adorama.com has some factory refurbished Canon XT's (8MP) that come with 90 day warranties from Adorama (not Canon). Those are in your price range, but most of them don't include lenses, so you'd have to spend extra money on those as well.

I think your best option is to, first, find out if the lenses you already have are compatible with the current line of Pentax cameras. If they are, jump all over a Pentax! A K10D if you can manage it. Otherwise, a K100D will probably work if you crop with the zoom or your feet.
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Old Jan 9, 2008, 8:01 PM   #6
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Here is a site on Pentax lens compatibility.

http://www.robertstech.com/compat.htm

I stumble upon it while searching on Pentax M42 mount info for my Mamiya SLR.




The Canon Digital Rebel XT uses the DIGIC II processor.
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Old Jan 10, 2008, 7:52 AM   #7
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The Canon XTi/400D has the digic II chip. The Replacement to the XTi/400D rummored to be out soon, perhaps at this month's PMA, is scheduled to have the digic III chip.

The Olympus E-500 two lens kit is another best buy in today's consumer DSLR market. That will give you the Zuiko 14-42mm kit lens and the Zuiko 40-150mm lens. In 35mm terms that will cover from a 28mm wide angle to a 300mm telephoto complete with 10mp.

The Nikon D-40X is another good buy that will also give you 10mp as well.

Sarah Joyce

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Old Jan 11, 2008, 12:44 PM   #8
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After looking at different reviews on the web, I'm probably going to choose either the Canon Rebel XTi or the Nikon D-40x. I'm still confused about the Nikon's 10.2 MP rating---some articles describe this as being "the same" as the 6 MP D40---with some minor ratio adjustment lens/sensor---stuff I don't understand. The wording is "effective pixels"---I'm wondering whether or not that's the same as "actual pixels."

On the Canon side, I read that the body "feels cheap," plus it seem it's more expensive (a factor for me). There's a lot of discussion about the different motion compensation systems between the Canon/Nikon brands.

Lenses: the "kit" lenses are decribed as crap by some reviewers, and decent by others. I could save money by buying just the body and getting a "better" lens, but I am tempted to get the kit (which has a macro choice, if I understand that right---something I need to take close-ups of products), and then getting a good "regular" lens for everything else.

Maybe I'm over-analyzing this. My boss is leaving the decision up to me, but keeps asking detailed questions that I can't answer--mainly he's concerned that we should buy a more expensive camera to get better quality. Since I'm the one who will be using it, I'm concerned about finding something that's user-friendly---simple enough that I'll actually look forward to using it. With that in mind, I'm leaning toward the Nikon.

Thanks again for your time to comment.

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Old Jan 11, 2008, 1:43 PM   #9
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SueSwee wrote:
Quote:
After looking at different reviews on the web, I'm probably going to choose either the Canon Rebel XTi or the Nikon D-40x. I'm still confused about the Nikon's 10.2 MP rating---some articles describe this as being "the same" as the 6 MP D40---with some minor ratio adjustment lens/sensor---stuff I don't understand. The wording is "effective pixels"---I'm wondering whether or not that's the same as "actual pixels."
The difference between the D40 and the D40x comes down to the 10MP vs. 6MP. The sensors have different resolutions, but are the same physical size, which increases teh pixel density. As pixel density increases, the potential for noise increases as well. When people talk about the D40 being as good as the D40x they're talking about when using higher ISO settings. Since the D40x has a higher pixel density it is more likely to produce images containing lots of noise. If you are going to take photos in good light (and it sounds like you are), there's no need to increase the ISO setting where you might get noise. Then, the D40x will give you a 10MP image, while the D40 will only give you a 6MP image, and a higher resolution image can be enlarged more, and crops of the image can be enlarged more.

The "actual pixels" vs. "effective pixels" is strictly an academic issue, since you will only ever see the effective pixels in the image.

SueSwee wrote:
Quote:
On the Canon side, I read that the body "feels cheap," ...
The Canon Digital Rebel XTi has a smaller body than most other dSLRs, and that disturbs some who are used to larger camera bodies. Itis also made out of plastic, where some more expensive cameras are made of Magnesium or Titanium. People whoare used to the metal body cameras look down on plastic cameras.

You should try it for yourself.

SueSwee wrote:
Quote:
There's a lot of discussion about the different motion compensation systems between the Canon/Nikon brands.
Canon and Nikon both use essentially the same Optical Image Stabilization system. The difference is in the way that each company chooses to measure camera shake. Basically, these arguments are attempts at splitting hairs.

SueSwee wrote:
Quote:
Lenses: the "kit" lenses are described as crap by some reviewers, and decent by others. I could save money by buying just the body and getting a "better" lens, but I am tempted to get the kit (which has a macro choice, if I understand that right---something I need to take close-ups of products), and then getting a good "regular" lens for everything else.
The kit lenses exist to sell cameras. They are intended to cover the majority of needs for the majority of first-time dSLR buyers. It seems, however, that your needs are different. You might want to consider a macro (Nikon calls it "micro") lens for your product closeups. What lens you should get dependson what you'll be photographing. As an example, there's flowers and there's bees, there's watches and there's watch parts. We can't really recommend a lensuntil we know what you'll you be photographing?

This also calls into play the choice of cameras. Canon and Nikon both have a very good selection of lenses, but the Nikon D40 & D40x can't autofocus with most Nikon lenses and most of the lenses from third parties. And, unfortunately, many of the good macro lenses fall into the category of not autofocusing on the Nikon cameras you are considering.

SueSwee wrote:
Quote:
On the Canon side, I read that the body "feels cheap," plus it seem it's more expensive (a factor for me). ...

... Maybe I'm over-analyzing this. My boss is leaving the decision up to me, but keeps asking detailed questions that I can't answer--mainly he's concerned that we should buy a more expensive camera to get better quality. Since I'm the one who will be using it, I'm concerned about finding something that's user-friendly---simple enough that I'll actually look forward to using it. With that in mind, I'm leaning toward the Nikon.
Why isexpense a factor for youif your boss is paying for it?
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Old Jan 11, 2008, 5:39 PM   #10
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The company pays for it, but there isn't an unlimited budget. I don't want to push for a vastly more expensive camera, if it's something we won't need or use all that much.

I'll be photographing stone fabrication equipment and facilities (large), and people working. The close-up images with have to show stone texture, color, and hand-carved details--that's not in the "intricate" category (like watch parts--your example). The images will be used in print (brochures, advertising, magazines) and for the web (not as crucial resolution-wise, but I usually need to crop/enlarge images to get the details I want to show).

I feel a bit more confident using auto-focus features, as I am quite nearsighted and wear glasses. Exact manual focusing of camera lenses is not my strongest skill (learned that because of my many disappointments with the print SLR camera). Perhaps the Canon models would be a better choice. I will study them some more.

Thanks,

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