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Old May 22, 2008, 10:37 AM   #1
tma
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Great site . need to hear some info. from real users. Not saleman...

My needs: indoor candid photo's low light normally, need strong flash range(parties,plays,awards, etc)

>> Indoor sporting events, fast shutter speed, good flash responce if needed.

>>My old 35MM Minolta is dead, I liked the "zoom/tele"lense and whould feel comfortable with another .. Any suggestions?? what to look for???what to stay away from???

as a novice, price is always a factor, based on the pricing I see, I'm guessing $500-$800 is "normal".............novice grade?



Thanks, and if I'm way out in my needs/assesment, let me know!

TMA
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Old May 22, 2008, 10:48 AM   #2
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What kind of lenses do you have for your old Minolta? The reason I ask is that Sony dSLR cameras use the Minolta Maxxum lens mount so you can use those lenses on the Sony dSLR cameras. Being able to use lenses you already own could save you quite a bit of money - it's one of the main reasons why I bought Pentax, I could use several lenses that I originally bought back in 1980 (I continue to shoot Pentax because I'm very happy with the quality, too).
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Old May 22, 2008, 10:50 AM   #3
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tma wrote:
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>>My old 35MM Minolta is dead, I liked the "zoom/tele"lense and whould feel comfortable with another .. Any suggestions?? what to look for???what to stay away from???
What kind of 35mm Minolta and what lenses do you have for it? Is it a Maxxum, Dynax or Alpha moidel?

If so, you can use any lenses you have for it on a Sony dSLR model (like the DSLR-A200). Their dSLR models can use Minolta Autofocus (a.k.a, Minolta A Mount, Maxxum, Dynax, Alpha) lenses. If it's an older manual focus model, then they would not work on it (at least not without an adapter, and adapters tend to a few drawbacks).

For your stated use (plays and rewards, etc.), you'll probably want a bright lens versus trying to use a flash though. I would normally go with an f/2 or brighter (repreesented by smaller f/stop numbers) prime lens (i.e. fixed focal length versus zoom). You're looking in the $300's for that type of lens in a Canon or Nikon system (for example, an 85mm f/1.8 ). Just be aware that the enry level Nikon models (D40, D40x, D60) won't Autofocus with one of those types (these bodies are missing a focus motor and that type of lens needs one). Sometimes, it's not going to be practical to use a flash at that type of thing (and you'd need an external flash for best range if you do want to use a flash instead).

A brighter zoom can sometimes work, too (you can get them as bright as f/2.8 throughout their focal range for most camera mounts).

For indoors in closer quarters, a wider lens works best. As long as you can use a flash at smaller venues (parties, etc.), any of the kit lenses would get you by (but, you'd want an external flash for best results).


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Old May 22, 2008, 10:51 AM   #4
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I see mtngal beat me to it. ;-) Let us know what kind of lenses you've got already.
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Old May 22, 2008, 11:52 AM   #5
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Thanks. it's an OLD Minolta XGM camera, there are no "auto-focus" features in my lenses.

Not being an expert, I'm hearing external flash is better than the pop-up that comes with the camera???? correct???



I'm still confused about "brighter lenses"...

anything else I should know as far as indoor sporting evens/gymnasiums?


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Old May 22, 2008, 12:38 PM   #6
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See this post for more on how apertures work.

http://forums.steves-digicams.com/fo...amp;forum_id=9

For indoor sporting events and gymnastics, you may need a very bright lens (f/2 or brighter available apertures, represented by smaller available f/stop numbers), as well as very high ISO speeds (ISO 3200 is going to be desirable for the gymastics, and even then you may have to time your shots well for the least amount of blur from rapid movement, depending on the lighting. ;-)

If you can get real close, you may get some keepers with a less expensive lens like a 50mm f/1.8 AF in Canon or Nikon mount (but, you'll need to move to a 30D or 40D if you want ISO 3200 with Canon, and you'll need to move to a D80 or above to get Autofocus with their brighter 50mm f/1.8 (around $100 or less) and 85mm f/1.8 (around $350 or so) lenses. You may be able to get by with ISO 1600 and still get some keepers. But, I wouldn't count on it for the gymnastics from what I've seen from sports shooters here.

In a Sony solution, a brighter 85mm will cost you. Expect in the 700's and up for a used Minolta 85mm f/1.4 AF lens, depending on the exact version. A new Sony/Zeiss 85mm f/1.4 will cost you much more. A used Minolta 100mm f/2 AF lens (what I use on a Sony A700 for low light conditions like that) may cost you even more than a used 85mm f/1.4 (lately, they've gone up a bit).

You can find a 50mm f/1.7 AF lens for around $100 though. Check reputable vendors like http://www.keh.com and http://www.bhphotovideo.com or http://www.adorama.com in their 35mm Minolta Aufocus lenses section in the used listings. Sony also offers a new 50mm f/1.4 AF lens for about $325 now at vendors like B&H. You'll want to shoot from the floor to get keepers with a lens like a 50mm, and even then you may not get all of the shots you want. An 85mm is usually preferred.

There are other options from Pentax and more, too (but, make sure to check what lenses are available for the focal length desired, as they have a 50mm f/1.4 AF lens at a good price (around $199 now), with the next step up being a more pricey 77mm /1.8 Limeted if memory serves, which is selling for around $679 now. I don't know much about the longer primes.

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Old May 22, 2008, 2:22 PM   #7
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Thanks....I have information overload.

I'll print this page and check out those websites soon.

Thanks for the education!



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Old May 23, 2008, 10:16 AM   #8
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TMA-

Maybe you really don't need to purchase a DSLR camera. But that is a decision that only you can make. A Sony H-3 at around $200 could easily do all the types of photos that you mentioned and it has a flash that has an effectice range of over 20 feet.

'Just a thought...

Sarah Joyce


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Old May 23, 2008, 11:34 AM   #9
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mtclimber wrote:
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A Sony H-3 at around $200 could easily do all the types of photos that you mentioned and it has a flash that has an effectice range of over 20 feet.
Except of course the indoor sports work. It's not going to do well at that at all. But it's a big jump in price to get a dslr and lens that WILL do a good job at the indoor sports. Of course it depends on the sport and level of play. Taking snapshots from the stands at an NBA game is one thing - trying to capture quality action shots of your 13 year old playing basketball in a middle school gym is something else entirely.
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Old May 23, 2008, 3:10 PM   #10
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that's what my needs are . primarily high school basketball, indoors..and typical soccer, football , softball outdoors.

I'm into the action shots!

I'll keep learning before I decide to part with my money!,

Thanks to all!
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