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Old Oct 20, 2008, 4:33 PM   #1
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My camera (a700) got stolen. It's a good camera but I do lack the ability to shoot without flash. And having less noise at high ISO.

I am asking what brand would have best:

lowest noise at highest ISO (3200 or 6400)

Price about 2000-2500 Euro (around the prize of a D700)

Brandname?? Canon, Nikon, Sony 900??

My best / most used lenses were stolen too..so a new brandname does not matter much.,,,,


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Old Oct 20, 2008, 4:43 PM   #2
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feetjai wrote:
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Price about 2000-2500 Euro (around the prize of a D700)
That's probably your best bet if you want to go to ISO 6400 with less noise (the new Nikon D700, which has the same 12MP full frame sensor found in the D3). Keep in mind that it's sensor is larger than the APS-C size sensors found in models like your A700, so you'd have the same angle of view with a given focal length that you would get using 35mm camera model.

You may also want to look at the Canon 5D and 5D II.

Did you get a chance to try the new Version 4 firmware with your A700 before it was stolen? I've been pretty impressed with the differences in retained detail with it, with the ability to disable Noise Reduction for a change in both raw and jpeg (I'm shooting with an A700)

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Old Oct 20, 2008, 5:04 PM   #3
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He Jim,



thanks for the quick reply. Yes I tried firmware 4. I could shoot at ISO 800 without much noise, but the shutter speed is just to low in some tungsten lit places. So A700 is not going to be my choice now. Kinda dissapointed with the A900. Many pixels equelshigher noise not? The 24 Mp does give a pic more detail....but 12 Mp is way enough for me.... I am not going to produce posters....just photos.


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Old Oct 20, 2008, 5:09 PM   #4
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I've been quite pleased with ISO 3200 photos from my A700, and don't mind ISO 4000 or so if I have to shooting RAW. Just make *sure* to turn off DRO (Dynamic Range Optimization), which is on by default.

Otherwise, it's going to try to push any darker areas, increasing visible noise, just as if you used a an even higher ISO speed than set to begin with. Make sure to expose a bit bright, too (and the Dynamic Range tends to be good enough to handle it).

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Old Oct 21, 2008, 1:50 AM   #5
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If you want a camera that you can get hold of right now then the D700 is the best choice.

It may be that the 5DMkII is at least as good or even better at high ISO, but we don't really know yet because production models haven't hit the streets and internet testers.

In your shoes I'd want to wait just a few weeks until we get proper comparisons.

Early indications are however that the 5DMkII may be very good indeed.

http://vimeo.com/1790529?pg=embed&sec=1790529
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Old Oct 21, 2008, 10:25 AM   #6
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ow! That 5D mark II sounds like a winner.... can't wait for the full reviews...

Thanks for the video!
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Old Oct 21, 2008, 12:35 PM   #7
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You want to shoot in low light at reasonable ISO settingsand shutter speeds; you need a large aperture lens.

One camera may outperform another to varying degrees, but nothing will give you what you want as well as a lens with a maximum aperture of f/2.0, f/1.8, or f/1.4. The kit lens (any kit lens) won't take you there.

Any dSLR will do what you want; you just need to hang the right lens on it.
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Old Oct 21, 2008, 2:14 PM   #8
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Which is another reason to take Canon very seriously.

There is currently nothing to match their range of L primes:
24 f1.4, 35 f1.4, 50 f1.2, 85 f1.2, 135 f2, 200 f2, etc.

Hopefully Sony will soon have a great range of Zeiss primes, but they are not there yet.

Nikon are also aware of their shortcomings in this area, and are working at bringing out some new lenses, but they are not there yet either.

For a long time the thing that pushed some pros towards Canon was their extensive range of lenses. Then they took over the DSLR market for a while with unmatched cameras. Now the competition has taken back a lot of ground in the camera market, but they are still playing catch-up when it comes to the range of lenses available.
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Old Oct 21, 2008, 2:44 PM   #9
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TCav wrote:
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You want to shoot in low light at reasonable ISO settingsand shutter speeds; you need a large aperture lens.

One camera may outperform another to varying degrees, but nothing will give you what you want as well as a lens with a maximum aperture of f/2.0, f/1.8, or f/1.4. The kit lens (any kit lens) won't take you there.

Any dSLR will do what you want; you just need to hang the right lens on it.
I agree to a point. BUT, the HUGE benefit of increased ISO performance is it opens the door to more opportunities to using a ZOOM lens in poor lighting. From my standpoint as a sports shooter, my ability to use my 70-200 2.8 and 120-300mm 2.8 lenses for indoor sports is a tremendous bonus. Those prime lenses get expensive. Take a look at what a Canon or Nikon 200mm 1.8/2.0 lens costs. Being able to use a higher ISO and use a $1100 (or even $800 Sigma) 70-200 lens has a LOT of appeal. Not optically as good as the primes but not many people can afford $4000 lenses.

Having this kind of IQ and detail at ISO 3200 provides me a LOT more flexibility. I can get angles and types of shots not possible when I had to use a prime. AND, not only the benefit of focal length but also a little more DOF:


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Old Oct 21, 2008, 3:10 PM   #10
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peripatetic wrote:
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Which is another reason to take Canon very seriously.

There is currently nothing to match their range of L primes:
24 f1.4, 35 f1.4, 50 f1.2, 85 f1.2, 135 f2, 200 f2, etc.

Hopefully Sony will soon have a great range of Zeiss primes, but they are not there yet.
I've got my fingers crossed, but I'm starting to lose hope. Sony has the Zeiss 85/1.4 (the only AF version available) and the 135/1.8, plus the 35/1.4 'G', and a nice 50/1.4, plus some very nice large aperture zooms, but they are extraordinarily expensive, and therefore, out of my price range. And the significant selection of used Minolta large aperture lenses is great but also getting expensive. (35/2.0 for ~$600, 100/2.0 for ~$1,000.) I was hoping to see something new from photokina, but if they don't come up with something by PMA '09, I'm switching to Canon.
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