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Old Jun 14, 2008, 12:33 AM   #1
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Hi guys.

What do you think of this deal?
$1,149.99 after $200 OFF
Canon 40D 10.1MP
EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6
LiveView 3" Screen
Enhanced CMOS Sensor Compatible with all EF/EF-S/
TS-E/MP-E Lenses
Up to 3200 ISO
$1,149.99

Mainly--what can I use that lens for? indoor? sports? telephoto?

OR--should i buy the XSI, body only, and invest the difference in money on a better lens???

aaah i need help!
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Old Jun 14, 2008, 2:41 AM   #2
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As with the Sony, a lens with a maximum aperture of f/3.5-5.6 is not going to do well indoors without some help. Plus, 28-135mm is long for indoors and short for sports.

The 40D is a fine camera, but as with the Sony, the lens will not do what you want.

Perhaps you could be more specific about what you want to do, so we might be able to point you in the proper direction as far as lenses are concerned, and from there you can pick a camera.
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Old Jun 14, 2008, 2:48 AM   #3
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TCav wrote:
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As with the Sony, a lens with a maximum aperture of f/3.5-5.6 is not going to do well indoors without some help. Plus, 28-135mm is long for indoors and short for sports.

The 40D is a fine camera, but as with the Sony, the lens will not do what you want.

Perhaps you could be more specific about what you want to do, so we might be able to point you in the proper direction as far as lenses are concerned, and from there you can pick a camera.
Thanks for all your help. Reading through these forums you have been generous with your insight and experience. I have three little boys and my pictures will largely revolve around them. Thus, indoor and outdoor shots of the kids, portraits, sports [including them running around], i'm also interested in a camera + lens that is capable of doing some nature/city shots....
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Old Jun 14, 2008, 3:27 AM   #4
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Outdoor shots of children can be accomplished with the kit lenses for any dSLR.

Indoor shots of children require either flash orlarger aperture lenses to keep the shutter speeds high enough. My preference would be for the larger aperture lenses, but some people here and elsewhere don't have a problem with flash for that. That kind of lens is available for any dSLR, as can any external flash.

"Sports" depends on the type of sport. For instance, football, soccer, baseball, lacrosse, etc., would require something like a 75-300mm. There are a number of those available for any dSLR. For indoor sports, like basketball, volleyball, hockey, wrestling, swimming, you'll need a moderate telephoto (50~100mm, depending on your vantage point)with a large aperture (f/2.0 or better.) Canon has the best selection of lenses in that range, followed by Nikon (except for on the D40/D40X/D60), Sony, Pentax and Olympus(and then the Nikon D40/D40X/D60.) (That order of preference is also applicable for camera bodies with autofocus systems that are well suited to sports.)

"Nature" generally can be covered by the same kinds of lenses that are appropriate for outdoor sports.

"City" can generally be covered by the kit lens, but may require longer or shorter focal lengths, and maybe even larger apertures, depending on the subject. That kind of lens is available for any dSLR.

So, if I've got your lens needs down correctly, I think the best choices would be a Canon (the 40D would be a particularly good choice), a Nikon (starting with the D80), any Sony, then any Pentax. The Sony and the Pentax also have the added benefit of having sensor shift image stabilization, which reduces (if not eliminates) motion blur due to camera shake, which is something that will occur often with long lenses (Sports, Nature) or shooting "from the hip" (small children running around, etc.)

So, while the Canon 40D would be a good choice, so, I think,would the Sony A300 you already have.
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Old Jun 14, 2008, 7:46 AM   #5
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If you really want to spend a lot more money for a 40D, it does have some advantages in some areas (for example, it's got a faster frame rate, larger viewfinder, and more compared to the entry level bodies).

But, it sounds like the only reason you're thinking about returning the A300 is because you didn't like the colors for some indoor photos you tried and "read" somewhere that the camera had higher noise.

Set your White Balance to match the lighting (for example, tungsten) if shooting indoors without flash. You'll need to do the same thing with other cameras in most artificial lighting for best results. ;-)

As for noise, I think you'd be hard pressed to see much difference at typical print and viewing sizes. Try it for yourself.

See my post in the other thread you started. I included links to full size originals of the same subjects, in the same lighting from the 40D, XSi, XTi and A200 (which uses the same sensor as your A300).

http://forums.steves-digicams.com/fo...mp;forum_id=84

If live view is important to you, make sure to try the Canon models in a store. The Sony has a much better Live View system.

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Old Jun 14, 2008, 1:50 PM   #6
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wow thanks jim! this is the best forum

i just played with the canon 40D and wow. its an amazing camera. my question is, will the 6 frames/sec really be practical for me?

Do any of you 40D owners have a family? Would you consider to be too heavy to carry around to casual family events? Is it an overkill?

The XSI and 40D are so close in price which is really making my decision hard btwn the two.
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Old Jun 14, 2008, 2:18 PM   #7
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If you plan on shooting a lot of sports, the faster frame rate of the 40D may come in handy to give you a better chance of a good shot with the desired timing (hand to ball contact, etc.) by shooting in bursts.

Some shooters prefer not to use a "machine gun" approach. There are pros and cons. But, if you've got that feature, you can choose to use it or not as the shooting conditions dictate.

But, the 40D is not more expensive just because of the faster available frame rate. It's in a different market niche, and it's got better build quality (body, shutter mechanism, etc.) and more compared to the entry level models. It's also got ISO 3200 (missing on the entry level Canon models like the XT, XTi, XSi, and new XS). A model like the Sony A700 that I shoot with now is aimed more at the same market niche the 40D is in.

As for the XSi, I wouldn't see any benefit to it over your A300. It's got lower available ISO speed settings (ISO 1600 on the XSi versus ISO 3200 on the A300), and it's live view system isn't as good (compared to the Sony models, other camera brands' current live view systems will have slower Autofocus performance, with undesirable LCD blackout issues trying to use Live View with Continuous drive mode). If you don't care about Live View, get an A200 instead so you have a larger viewfinder compared to the A300. ;-)

Also, if you do want to shoot in low light, the A300's ISO 3200 would give you shutter speeds twice as fast as the XSi's ISO 1600 for a given lighting and aperture setting (for example, if shooting indoor sports without a flash to get faster shutter speeds for less motion blur from subject movement). A bit more noise is often better than blur, and you've got ISO 3200 if you need it with a Sony solution. Or, you can shoot at ISO 1600 for lower noise if lighting allows it (which is the highest available ISO speed you have with the entry level Canon models like the XSi).

Your Sony's frame rate is probably close to the same as the new Canon using the optical viewfinder, too (if you look at Steve's review conclusion, the Sony A200 clocked in at 3.4 frames per second using an Extreme III Card, with no limit on the number of frames, and the A300 is probably close to the same using Continuous Drive mode if you're not using Live View).

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Old Jun 15, 2008, 2:05 AM   #8
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The 40D is a great camera and it's just fine for family events and carrying around - for some people. There's no way anyone could answer that question for you it depends on you. It's not a pocket camera, but I carried my 20D and now 5D pretty much everywhere. Not a problem for me.

Also the 40D is fantastic value-for-money at the moment, it seems to be right in the middle of its production run and Canon seems to have decided to compete on price now that all the other manufacturers are competing on features.

BUT <== and it's a big but :lol:

You haven't said why you think your current camera isn't good enough and the 40D will help. What features does the 40D have that the A300 doesn't have that will make your photos better? Probably none.

Do you have some sample pictures that you're not happy with that you think a new camera will fix?

With no disrespect you have 2 problems at the moment:
1. (Smaller problem) Probably the wrong lenses, so spending a bit on new lenses instead of a new camera will give better results.
2. (Bigger problem) Your skill (with any DSLR) is probably not that great at the moment. So you might want to spend the extra cash on a photography course.

I'm all in favour of new toys, but it's a common refrain from new DSLR users when they are not happy with their pictures to think that buying new equipment is the answer to their problems, when usually technique is the root cause.

So my advice is to take a good course, read some books, practice, practice, practice. Post some photos in the forums and ask for help as to what has gone wrong. Then, in a few months, once you're getting some really good results, think about what you really need from your equipment and whether the 40D is what you need.


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Old Jun 15, 2008, 7:11 AM   #9
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peripatetic wrote:
Quote:
You haven't said why you think your current camera isn't good enough and the 40D will help. What features does the 40D have that the A300 doesn't have that will make your photos better? Probably none.
See this thread. It's my understanding the A300 was purchased just before this was posted. I don't read anything that tells me a camera like the 40D would change anything.

http://forums.steves-digicams.com/fo...mp;forum_id=84

Quote:
Do you have some sample pictures that you're not happy with that you think a new camera will fix?
jang:

I'm going to suggest the same thing. If you post some samples of what you're talking about (for example, the indoor photos you were unhappy with the colors from), we can probably tell you what is happening to cause the look you're getting and whether it's normal for the camera settings you were using (and we can see the settings the camera used from the EXIF header in an image), and make some suggestions on any changes needed in settings, technique or equipment.

If you're using Windows, try the free Irfanview. After you open an image, select "Image>Resize/Resample" and make the width around 640 to 720 pixels wide for posting. Leave the Preserve Aspect Ratio box checked. After you click OK, use the "File>Save As" menu choice and give it a new filename and save it as a jpeg files (leaving the box you'll see come up checked to retain the EXIF). I'd set the Quality slider you see come up at around 80% to keep the file size within limits.

Then, when you make a post, you can attach the photo using the Browse button you'll see when entering text in a new post.

Chances are, you'd have the exactly same issues impacting the look of photos taken in the same conditions with another dSLR model. Throwing more money at a different camera is probably only going to do one thing... lighten your wallet. ;-)

Unless you need the features of a different body, you're probably better off spending that money on items like brighter lenses (wider available apertures, represented by smaller f/stop numbers) and/or an external flash (so you can bounce it for a more diffused light source, with a larger area being illuminated compared to the more focused light of an internal flash). But, I wouldn't rush out and spend any money before you understand more about your equipment and what you can change with technique and/or settings for better results.

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Old Jun 15, 2008, 7:56 AM   #10
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P.S.

This article by Petteri Sulonen makes a real good read for a new dSLR owner:

Don't Be A Bozo

Here some excerpts from it. Choice (c) is where you're headed in this case ;-)

Quote:
... pictures are dull, or orange, or blue, or soft, or...
[snip]
...so you fire off an embittered message on 300D Talk, march back to the store, and either (a) return the camera, get your money back, and resolve never to listen to people who think DSLR's are worth a darn, or (b) exchange the camera for another unit, since yours must obviously be defective, or (c) exchange the camera and/or lens for the next better and more expensive model. If (b) or (c), you're almost certainly going to return to square one, and you'll be back at the store the next day, or the day after that, and as likely as not end up choosing (a).
I'd post some samples and let us help you to figure out what's causing the results you're getting (and then we can help you to understand what you can change for better results) before rushing out to spend money on a different camera body.

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