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Old Jan 6, 2009, 12:11 PM   #1
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Hi!

I'm planning on buying a DSLR soon. I'm tired of borrowing cameras from my friends. I'm sure that it's annoying, and would only get worse with this coming semester. I have a Canon Powershot A80, but it had a lens error, and won't focus. For my photography classes, I have been using a Canon EOS Elan film camera with the kit lens (28-80mm 3.5-5.6) and a 100mm 2.8 macro lens. I use this camera most often on the manual setting. I'd like a DSLR with controls that are similar to my film camera.

I'll be using the DSLR for my Still Digital Imaging class, this semester, and to take pictures of my design work and paintings. I'll also be taking pictures to use in my senior project that are likely to be blown up to, at most, poster size. Of course, I'll also be taking pictures of everything.

I've done some research and have narrowed it down to the Canon's Rebel XSi, and 40D. If I get the XSi, I could get a kit that comes with a lens. If I get the 40D, I can only afford the body. Which is the better buy? Also, should I get a wider angle lens? I know that both of the camera's sensors will make my lenses seem like I've zoomed in by a factor of 1.6.

I already prefer the 40D because the manual controls work a lot like the ones on my film camera.

Any advice will be GREATLY appreciated!
Thanks in advance!

PS! Here is the URL to my flickr, if you'd like to see what my school work looks like.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/andheartscara
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Old Jan 6, 2009, 12:34 PM   #2
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From what you've said, I don't think you'll need anything wider, but your 28-80mm 3.5-5.6 isn't anything to write home about, and the kit 18-55 IS lensis very good. Given what you want to shoot, you might be better off with a newer, better lens.
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Old Jan 6, 2009, 12:52 PM   #3
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Unfortunately, the link you provided does not work.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Jan 6, 2009, 12:58 PM   #4
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Sorry about that! Thanks for pointing it out. It works, now!
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Old Jan 6, 2009, 1:25 PM   #5
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Cara-

Thanks for fixing the link. Your work looks very good. My advice is to beging with the XSi. It is an excellent camera, and as you noted you can get started with the kit lens.

Have you read the thread, "Thinking about Purchasing a DSLR Camera" There is a lot of information there that might be helpful to you as well.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Jan 6, 2009, 3:13 PM   #6
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I don't see a reason why the xsi wouldn't fit your requirements. It has AV, TV, M modes, bracketing - all the manual controls you need. Nothing in your planned shooting indicates you need the extra specs the 40d provides (burst rate, ISO 3200, etc.). Ergonomics would be the only reason to choose the 40d over the xsi but from a feature standpoint the xsi has the capabilities you need. But I'm a big believer in ergonomics - if you don't like the feel of the xsi you won't use it.

My recommendation would be the xsi with kit lens. As Tcav pointed out, your current kit lens isn't great (although the 100 2.8 macro is nice). And, more importantly, the field of view of your current lens would be 44.8mm on either DSLR. That's quite a bit tight. The 17-55 would give you a 27-88mm FOV on either dslr so it will be an easier transition.
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Old Jan 6, 2009, 7:51 PM   #7
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Thanks!
I'll read it!

I just don't like how light the rebel feels and I like the wheel on the back of the 40D that controls the aperture. It feels just like my film camera which I love, except for the fact that it's film.

Would it be a bad idea to look into getting a used 30D?
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