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Old Jul 15, 2009, 1:55 AM   #31
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Quote:
It's tough to get used to the camera body without a lens to go with it.
That occurred to me too.

The kit lenses from all manufacturers now are very decent performers at very good prices. It would be crazy not to get one unless you already have a bunch of lenses for that camera mount.
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Old Jul 15, 2009, 12:25 PM   #32
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Peripathetic-
The problem was that I incorrectly answered the question with my with my own situation in mind, where I have the necessary lenses at hand. I simply goofed. I apologize.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Jul 15, 2009, 2:17 PM   #33
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Yes, the Pentax K-7 can do in-camera HDR photos, where it takes 3 shots and does tone-mapping of some sort in-camera for producing one picture. The output is only jpg but really quite good with providing a larger dynamic range than the camera is capable of normally.

The other thing that the K-7 has is +/- 5 stops for Ev, and 5 frames for exposure bracketing. This means that you can use 2 stops between frames, for a total range of 8 stops between the darkest and lightest frames. Its surprising how much this helps Photomatix.

Unfortunately, it is well beyond the OP's budget.

The K20 does 5 frame auto exposure bracketing, but doesn't have the range of the K7. It can do 1 stop between frames, maybe 1.3 stops but I've never tried that. It can't do 2 stops. You can still get some really nice HDR shots with it, so it might be worth looking twice at, just for that capability.
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Old Jul 15, 2009, 3:13 PM   #34
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Again, if using a tripod I wouldn't get held up on a camera's exposure bracketing. You can change the exposure however you like between shots and take as many as you like. If the OP were hiking and not using tripod, then exposure bracketing becomes relevant. But for the OPs needs, I believe it's a red herring.
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Old Jul 18, 2009, 12:50 AM   #35
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It's been few days since I checked this forum. Just recently I went to the local Best Buy (Not my prime choice of place to buy cameras) to just try out the grips of the cameras.

Again Best Buy didn't fail to disappoint me by attaching their bulky security tags on the grip of all the cameras. So, to get a better feel of the camera, I asked the sales person to relocate the tag (if possible). Then the person goes on about whether I will be responsible if the camera ever gets stolen by relocating the tag, then says I should just go to a camera store to do my business.

I just walked in to test out the cameras and how it feels in my hand but, I ended up walking out feeling pretty sh*t. Anyways, after just holding on these those cameras, I've noticed that the Canon Rebels are EXTREMELY light and felt like a toy, compare to D90, K200D, K20d and A350. D90 did felt much more solid (and heavy) but I found the grip a little odd for some reason. However, I really appreciated the dual dial on the camera. K200D and K20D, I also liked scroll wheel and button layout.

I've also looked at tripods. The price range was from $20 to $200 but, even one of the high priced tripods felt like you could easily bend them.

Well, I'm still shopping around but I will eventually land on one and able to share photos and learn from other people. I thank every and each one of you for the great comments and advices. I'll be sure to return to this forum. Thank you and I wish you luck with everything you do.
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Old Jul 18, 2009, 7:21 AM   #36
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I'd be amazed if you found a real tripod at best buy. You're going to have to go to a REAL camera store to see a tripod. Again, you should be looking at Bogen (Manfrotto) or maybe Benbo.
Here's a setup over at B&H. This is the minimum I would go:
http://tinyurl.com/ls97rt
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Old Jul 18, 2009, 11:07 AM   #37
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About 18 months ago, I was out in Washington DC and came across the Air and Space museum annex - which allowed monopods. So I quickly went to best buy and picked up a monopod the night before. While there, yes they have tripods but....

In the same breath, I have been using an aluminum and plastic one for the last 4 years (got it for almost free - and that is what it was really worth). My use in the last year has gone up, and I have been looking for a replacement, until a couple of weeks ago and it bit the dust (camera was not on it).

I had size limitations - it had to fit into my carry on luggage (I carry the camera and lenses in my backpack), but pack my tripod. Last weekend I received the Benro tripod I ordered. With two sons in college (on the pop scholarship - they work, but I am still writing checks), I will say that I did not want to spend a fortune - there were limits to the pain. The size, weight, and sturdiness were the primary factors here.

Well it came and after using it several times now, the difference is night and day between what I had and this one. The size of the tubing, its construction, the leg segments of with the rubber mountings will will damp induced vibrations, its height is taller which suits me better, its overall construction and design. Supposely Benro "approperiated" the design from Manfrotto. I am very pleased - so far. I had a pan head and this is a ball head that works out much better for me. I do not see any way that a leg segement will just fold or crumple on itself on this one.

The $160 is probably half what the comparable Manfrotto would have cost. I have to think that there are some differences. But what they might be (other than the head - which I am going to move to the monopod and upgrade heads for some additional panorama features), I have not come across - as of yet.
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Old Jul 18, 2009, 2:11 PM   #38
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Thanks so much for the added tripod info. The bottom line is that a really good tripod is a one time investment. With cheap tripods, they last a year or so, and then you are off to purchase another.

Back in 1952, after much deliberation and fretting, I spent $39.95, out of my paycheck, for a very expensive tripod, at least then. Well, folks, here we are 57 years later, and I am still using that tripod.

Sarah Joyce
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