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Old Aug 11, 2008, 2:09 PM   #1
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I am currently using a P&S Sony DSC-w1 which has been decent.

I am looking to get my First DSLR and really don't know what to get. I guess the most accessible to me is the Canon Rebel or the Nikons. But I want a good quality camera in which I can see results on while I learn Photography.

As for my uses, will mostly be for taking random photos in places I am exploring. Some of those places like subway tunnels and underground places will be very dark. Sometimes I will take pictures outside in the dark, but I don't want to limit myself to night time shots.

I have asked some of the guys who I do this stuff with and they say to teach me I need a SLR. Here are some pictures to give you a insight of what I want to use my camera to try and take and learn with and hopefully one day be this good. So I need the lense to be able to take in alot of light, I think.





as for my price, sub $700 is fine.
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Old Aug 11, 2008, 3:37 PM   #2
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There are three factors that affect exposure:
  • Shutter speed - The length of time the image sensor is exposed to light.[/*]
  • Aperture - The amount of light that passes through the lens to the image sensor.[/*]
  • ISO Setting - The sensitivity of the image sensor.
[/*]
Your sample shots don't include any EXIF data, so it's hard to know what exposure settings were used to obtain them, but it's clear that flash wasn't used.

Some dSLR brands have better low light performance than others, some have better andmore affordable large aperture lenses, and others have image stabilization systems. Unfortunately,nobody has all three.

I think the solution that imposes the least objectionable compromise for the moneyis the Pentax K200D body ($570) with either the 50mm f/1.4 lens ($200)or the 35mm f/2.0 ($300).

Canon and Nikon have less expensive cameras, some of whichhave good reputations for low noise,and less expensive lenses, but they don't have image stabilization.

Sony has image stabilization, but it's large aperture lenses are expensive.

Olympus also has image stabilization, but it does not have a good reputation for low noise. It's large aperture lenses are also expensive.

BTW, what are your friends using?
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Old Aug 11, 2008, 4:30 PM   #3
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Does the Rebel not have stabilization, as canons website says they do, at least the XSi model. But I am not sure what that means.

TCav wrote:
Quote:
There are three factors that affect exposure:
  • Shutter speed - The length of time the image sensor is exposed to light.[/*]
  • Aperture - The amount of light that passes through the lens to the image sensor.[/*]
  • ISO Setting - The sensitivity of the image sensor.[/*]
Your sample shots don't include any EXIF data, so it's hard to know what exposure settings were used to obtain them, but it's clear that flash wasn't used.

Some dSLR brands have better low light performance than others, some have better andmore affordable large aperture lenses, and others have image stabilization systems. Unfortunately,nobody has all three.

I think the solution that imposes the least objectionable compromise for the moneyis the Pentax K200D body ($570) with either the 50mm f/1.4 lens ($200)or the 35mm f/2.0 ($300).

Canon and Nikon have less expensive cameras, some of whichhave good reputations for low noise,and less expensive lenses, but they don't have image stabilization.

Sony has image stabilization, but it's large aperture lenses are expensive.

Olympus also has image stabilization, but it does not have a good reputation for low noise. It's large aperture lenses are also expensive.

BTW, what are your friends using?
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Old Aug 11, 2008, 4:58 PM   #4
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Canon's image stabilization system is lens based. That is, the XSi body does not have stabilization, but some lens, generally more expensive have it. That is Olympus's and Sony's advantage: as their IS system is in the body, you don't need lens with IS.
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Old Aug 11, 2008, 5:56 PM   #5
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element-> wrote:
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Does the Rebel not have stabilization, as canons website says they do, at least the XSi model. But I am not sure what that means.
Canon and Nikonuse optical image stabilization insome of theirlenses. The kit lens on the XS and XSi is stabilized, but the kit lenses on their otherdSLRs are not. Image stabilization allows you to use longer shutter speeds without the consequences of motion blur due to camera shake. Pentax, Sony and most Olympus dSLRs have sensor shift image stabilization in the camera body. This means that any lens attached to the camera will create a stabilized image, not just special lenses.

In addition, you need a large aperture lens, and Canon's stabilized kit lens does not have a large aperture. If you used a large aperture lens on a Canon or a Nikon body, it wouldn't be stabilized, so you'd have to use a faster shutter speed to prevent motion blur from camera shake. If you use a large aperture lens on a Pentax, Sony or Olympus body, it would be stabilized, so you could use a longer shutter speed.

The ideal scenario is where you can use low ISO setting to noise, and a large aperture so you can use a fast shutter speed. Doing this all in a tunnel will require some compromises. In either of the shots you posted, the noise would be deafening (so to speak) so you would need to keep the ISO at or below 400, and you probably couldn't afford to go much lower. You would have to use the largest aperture possible to avoid using shutter speeds of 1/2 second or longer, which would result in motion blur due to camera shake, stabilization or not.

A consequence of using a large aperture is a shallow depth of field, but since you'd be focusing on relatively distant objects anyway, that shouldn't be a problem.
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Old Aug 11, 2008, 6:26 PM   #6
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Looking at the example shots, I don't know that stabilization would help all that much. These look like fairly long exposures, which may have required a tripod, (although without EXIF info, it's hard to tell). Stabilization only helps to a point and once you get down to around 1/4 shutter speeds, you're results without a tripod will become less consistent.
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Old Aug 11, 2008, 6:45 PM   #7
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rjseeney wrote:
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Looking at the example shots, I don't know that stabilization would help all that much. These look like fairly long exposures, which may have required a tripod, (although without EXIF info, it's hard to tell). Stabilization only helps to a point and once you get down to around 1/4 shutter speeds, you're results without a tripod will become less consistent.
All the more reason to have a large aperture lens.
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