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-   -   Should I get a DSLR or should I sit with SX10 (

maisatomai Jul 20, 2009 1:11 PM

Should I get a DSLR or should I sit with SX10
I shoot indoor and outdoor with SX10. I have a kid and I love to shoot him. I realized that when I shoot indoor, the picture will come out to be blur as my child is moving around and the shutter speed in aperture mode is around 0.5 second (thus the blur). When I tried to increase the shutter speed in shutter mode, I realized that the pictures are too blur.

I hope to ask whether getting a DSLR will help in this situation. Also, thought of buying DLSR (Nikon 5000d) so that I can buy interchangeable lens for owling and low light birding. Used a SX10 (many people commented it being slow @ f5.7 at max zoom) and realized the 20X zoom is not enough in some situtation for birding (approached them and they fly away). Also, because of the slow focal len, the required shutter speed is 1 second. I was thinking whether buying the Nikon 5000d DSLR and SIGMA 150-500mm (F5-6.3) will help. Although it seems slower than the canon SX10, my intuition tells me that the two numbers cannot be compared in this way. Am I right? Added to the Nikon D5000 with a crop factor of 1.6, I will have 800mm max.

Or should I upgrade to a Olympus 26X optical zoom + 1.7 teleconverter lens to acheive my low light birding goal? Thanks.

JohnG Jul 20, 2009 1:18 PM

A DSLR will help somewhat with taking photos of your child. They have better high ISO and have lenses available with wide apertures - both of which will enable faster shutter speeds. HOWEVER, the truth of the matter is - for many indoor shooting situations the right tool for the job is using a flash. I shoot a lot of sports work indoors - lots of fast movement. High ISO and fast lenses help there. But when I'm in my house and taking photos of my 3 year old son, there simply isn't enough light for that approach to work well. So I use an external flash.

So, that's my advice to you (assuming you're talking about in-home types of shooting - if not, please specify the situations and conditions under which you're shooting) - use flash with your existing camera. You'll still have issues with time it takes to focus and the shutter to fire, but with proper flash use the photos won't be blurry.

maisatomai Jul 20, 2009 1:26 PM

When I use flash, the subject becomes very bright but the background becomes very dark as the flash from the SX10 is not that powerful

JohnG Jul 20, 2009 1:32 PM

The sx10 has a hot-shoe so you can add an external flash. Also, bump the ISO up to 400 and you'll have less dark background. I'd recommend the 430exII - you'd have to buy an external flash for a DSLR anyway. If you do later decide to move to a DSLR and choose a Canon, the flash can move right along with you.

mtclimber Jul 20, 2009 1:34 PM

Well, let's address theses items one at a time.When you taking photos inside with SX-10 camera are you using the built-in flash or the external flash? It sounds like you are attempting to use the SX-10 without flash indoors. If you are doing that, the SX-10 can not handle the situation (meaning you get a blurred photo). That can be overcome by adding a flash. An external flash, like the EX-430 is preferred solution for that problem.

Would a DSLR camera solve the above described situation? It would depend entirely on what lens you were using as well as the ISO setting you had selected. The advantage of a DSLR camera is that it has a much larger imager, which allows the DSLR camera to use higher ISO speeds without showing much eletronic noise.

Keep in mind that the Canon SX-10 due to its much smaller imager and its measurably slower lens as you zoom out becomes technically limited, and is unable to capture the photo that you desire.

Please don't view a DSLR camera as a super solution. A DSLR camera, just like any other camera needs light to capture the photo. Please view the DSLR camera as more capable of taking photos with lesser amounts of light.

The Sigma 150-500mm lens if mounted on a Nikon D-5000 will give you the equivalent, in 35mm terms, of an 800mm lens reach.

Sarah Joyce

AndyfromVA Jul 20, 2009 9:42 PM


I was thinking whether buying the Nikon 5000d DSLR and SIGMA 150-500mm (F5-6.3) will help.
The Sigma 150-500mm lens also weighs almost 5 pounds and costs $1000. It seems like a rather extreme solution to your shooting problem.

TCav Jul 21, 2009 6:32 AM


Originally Posted by maisatomai (Post 985682)
... I was thinking whether buying the Nikon 5000d DSLR and SIGMA 150-500mm (F5-6.3) will help. ...

FWIW, from's Lens Repair Data 3.0:

"ē The Sigma 120-400 and 150-500 are no longer on the list because we no longer carry them. Both had failure rates of about 45% while we had them. New batches may be better (ours were all bought early), we donít know."

maisatomai Jul 21, 2009 9:03 AM

Is the measurement of focal size different in terms of DSLR lenses vs. proconsumer like Canon SX10? Because SX10 at its max has focal length of 5.7mm and it is considered slow. A Sigma 150-500mm costs a lot more, weight a lot more but it is slower at 6.3

JohnG Jul 21, 2009 9:14 AM

Be careful in your terms. The 5.7 value isn't in millimeters - it's an aperture value.
And both 5.7 or 6.3 would be considered 'slow' in DSLR terms. F2.8 is where you start to be considered 'fast'. That's 4 times the amount of light being let in as an f5.6-6.3 lens.

But to answer your other question - aperture is rated the same in both prosumer and DSLR: f5.6 in one is f5.6 in the other for purposes of calculating EXPOSURE. To put it another way, if ISO 100 f5.6 1/200 is the correct exposure in one camera those same settings should work in the other camera. There might be a slight difference - usually attributable to how a camera manufacturer rates the ISO values - some overstate the values a little bit - so ISO 400 may really only be ISO 320.

Now, aperture also is part of the depth-of-field calculation. While it plays the same roll in the digicam AND dslr depth-of-field calculations what will be VASTLY different is the sensor size and focal length. This is because you use the PHYSICAL focal length of the lens - not it's 35mm equivelent (i.e. the sx10 lens doesn't have a physical focal length of 400mm).

JohnG Jul 21, 2009 9:17 AM

By the way - I just noticed the part about low-light birding. Guesss what? Again, flash comes into play. Only now you would want to add a better beamer to the flash. And now you'll need the benefit of high ISO and focus performance of a DSLR.
I would suggest the Bigma 50-500 over the other Sigma choices.

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