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Old Oct 27, 2008, 8:02 AM   #1
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Hi There,
I am trying to upgrade from point and shoot to dslr. Read reviews about lot of dslr and how to look for a dslr camera and am confused again.

My needs are simple..
DSLR is for hobby and not for any professional photography, very much interested in macro and nature photography.. hence would be interested in buying macro lense in future..

Was thinking of buying canon 400d, but meanwhile canon came up with 1000d which is almost like 450d but without few features.. which i dont think am really in need of.. but there are hardly any buyers for 1000d, so am confused again that should i go for 1000d though it suits my needs..

Meanwhile saw lot of good reviews about sony alpha 200 which is inmy budget, however when i looked for macro lense compatibel to sony alpha 200, they are all very expensive , minolta and sony lense starts from $250, where as for canon i can go for 3rd party macro lense which will cost $100..

So kindly advice me whether canon 1000d is ok to buy and also are there are macro lense which would come within $100-120 range(am okay wiht used lense)

Thanks in advance..
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Old Oct 27, 2008, 8:24 AM   #2
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my4thdimension wrote:
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Meanwhile saw lot of good reviews about sony alpha 200 which is inmy budget, however when i looked for macro lense compatibel to sony 200, they are all very expensive , minolta and sony lense starts from $250, where as for canon i can go for 3rd party macro lense which will cost $100..
What lens was that (third party macro lens costing $100)? Was it a true 1:1 Macro lens (which means you can fill the frame with a subject the same size as the film or sensor it's being used with)?

Be careful that you're getting a 1:1 Macro lens if you need that ability (as some manufacturers tend to use the term Macro for lenses that may only have a 1:4 magnification capability (able to fill the frame with a subject 4 times the size of the sensor or film it's being used with).

You also want to make sure it's got decent optical quality (you tend to get what you pay for in most cases, with cheaper lenses having poor coatings resulting in loss of contrast from flare in harsher lighting and optical quality that tends to be inferior to better lenses (not to mention cheaper build quality).

If you're looking at a $100 macro lens, chances are, it's available for Minolta AF Mount, either used or new. About the cheapest one you normally see around is the Cosina 100mm f/3.5. You'll see this lens marketed under Cosina, Phoenix and Vivitar brand names. It includes an adapter to get 1:1 Macro (it's a 1:2 magnification lens without the adapter). Of course, it's not up to the quality you'd get with something like a Tamron 90mm f/2.8 Macro, Sigma 50mm or 105mm f/2.8 Macro, Sony 50mm or 100mm macro lenses, or macro lenses you'd find from Canon, Nikon, etc.


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Old Oct 27, 2008, 8:34 AM   #3
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P.S.

The kit lenses with entry level dSLR models usually have roughly 1:4 magnification available (which means they can fill the frame with a subject 4 times the size of their sensor when zoomed in at their closest focus distance). If you're just shooting flowers, you may find that to be enough. If you're shooting smaller subjects, you may want something that allows one to fill a larger portion of the frame (i.e., a dedicated 1:1 macro lens like a Sigma 50mm f/2.8, 105mm f/2.8, etc.).

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Old Oct 27, 2008, 10:40 AM   #4
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First, the difference between the Canon 1000D and the 450D is that the 450D has a 12MP image sensor, while the 1000D has a 10MP image sensor. They both have the same manufacturer's suggested retail price, but since the 450D is very popular, it is usually available at a discount. The result is that the camera with more features is frequently less expensive.

Second, the Canons you're looking at have a feature that the Sony A200doesn't have: 'Live View'. This lets you compose your shot using the LCD display, which the Sony A200 can't do. This might be helpful for macrophotography,when you might have trouble getting your eye to the optical viewfinder. If 'Live View' is something you might be interested in,a more appropirate choice from Sony might be the A300 or the A350. The A300 is, for all practical purposes, identical to the A200, but with 'Live View' (on an articulating display, something the Canons don't have.) The A350 is identical to the A300, but with a 14MP image sensor.

Third, there's macrophotography, and then there's macrophotography. Do you want to shoot flowers or insects? Watches or watch parts? For flowers and watches, a "Macro" (1:4) lens might be sufficient, but for insects and watch parts you should have a MACRO (1:1) lens.

And, yes, Sony's, and even third party macro lenses can be expensive. But macro lenses for Canondon't costmuch less. And many third party macro lenses are available, and cost the same,for both cameras.
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Old Oct 27, 2008, 2:10 PM   #5
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A couple of thoughts in addition to what's already been said:

Live view can be quite useful for macro photography, as long as you are using a tripod or other support for the camera. Sony's live view is among the best, but it comes at a price - the viewfinder is significantly smaller. If you can live with it, it could be a good choice. Just my personal opinion, but I'd probably choose the A200 since I still don't own a decent tripod and therefore, can't use live view much. The bigger viewfinder would be more important to me, especially since I also use the camera for other things.

I used to own the Phoenix version of the lens JimC mentioned, though I used it ona Pentax. It's optics are much better than you would expect from a lens that inexpensive, it's sharpness not that much less than the Tamron.
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