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Old Oct 26, 2009, 3:15 PM   #1
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Default Trying to save yet get a good dslr.....

I am looking to get into the dslr ring. I have found a used Pentax *istD online local to me that has 2600 shutters on it right now. He has stopped using it as he purchased another one. I can get the camera, SMC DFA 18-35mm lens, UV lens, memory card and adobe software for $300. I think this is a good buy as I am just trying to get started in the dslr camera world. I have looked at the Canon Xti with EF-S 18-55mm lens is $400 and it's almost new with case as well, Sony A230, Olympus E420, and another Canon Rebel XS. Also I can go Nikon as well since a friend of mine has a lens that he will almost give me. But I feel that the *istD even though it is only 6.1 mp it seems to have a better user rating on it and feels well also. So my question is am I begining my journey down the right path at a good price? And yes I am a newb. Where as my wife has taken a class already to give her an added step on things. Any advice is appreciated.
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Old Oct 26, 2009, 3:27 PM   #2
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The *std is several generations old at this point, and doesnt really perform up with the newer generations, and at 300$, its not much cheaper than what you can get a newer generation.

i did a quick search on bhphotovideo, sorted lowest to highest. you can see that some new camera's can be had for 450$. i.e. the oly e-520, and if you click the add cart for low price on the pentax k2000, its actually $450 as well.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/search...Ns=p_PRICE_2|0

no doubt further searching could yield more results.
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Old Oct 26, 2009, 3:30 PM   #3
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While dSLRs are quite flexible and capable cameras, there are certain things that one brand is better at than the others. So if you can talk a little about what types of photography you and your wife want to do, we can give you a better idea what you should look for in a system.
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Old Oct 26, 2009, 3:30 PM   #4
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Welcome to the forums.

That's an older Pentax model. But, it does tend to be well liked by some of our Pentax shooters, as it's 6MP sensor is really pretty good for most viewing/print sizes. Personally, I think it probably outperforms many 10MP models at higher ISO speeds for typical viewing/print sizes from an Image Quality perspective.

Frankly, I came very close to buying one a few years back, because I really liked it's ergonomics and viewfinder (something that you should take a closer look at). Often, your perception of a given camera model (ergonomics, viewfinder and more) is more important than how a given camera model performs. ;-)

But, it does have some drawbacks compared to newer cameras (Autofocus speed, write speeds to memory cards, etc.), depending on what you want to shoot more often. Since you mentioned "it feels well also" is probably one of the things I'd consider when buying a camera.

Now, if you're shooting something like sports, one of the other models may be a better bet due to AF speed, write speeds to media, etc.). So, I'd give members here more information on what you want to shoot, and the conditions you want to shoot in, for more informed opinions on how these cameras stack up.
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Old Oct 26, 2009, 3:32 PM   #5
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I need to post faster, as I see that both Hards80 and TCav replied before I finished typing my post. :-)

I'd give members more information on how you want to use a camera for better responses.
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Old Oct 26, 2009, 3:48 PM   #6
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We will be doing alot of outdoor shots as well as our kids playing outside doing fun things. We would like be be able to possibly get a few 20 x 30 prints but mainly 10 x 13's will be the main print size. She like alot of nature and ocean type shots. We are definetly newbs to dslr so all information is very helpful. We have been using a Sony DSC75 for 8 years so we tend to take care of our things, this is why I am searching for a good camera at a good price and with Christmas coming on she wants a good camera when family comes into town.
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Old Oct 26, 2009, 3:57 PM   #7
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if you are looking to keep your dslr for many years. i would seriously consider looking to spend a little extra and get a new camera regardless of the brand and model you ultimately choose.

it may be worth your time to head down to the local camera store, and get a feel for which brands and models fit well in your hand, whos controls are within easy reach, and whos size you feel confortable carrying.

this will allow you to narrow down your choices and allow us to better give you direction in making your final purchase.
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Old Oct 26, 2009, 4:37 PM   #8
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I second Hards80's suggestion.

I will also say that, while any dSLR should do well for the types of photos you want to take, blowing up a 6MP image to 20x30, or even 10x13, will not produce very satisfactory results. A 6MP image from the *istD has a resolution of 3000x2008, which, when printed out at 20x30, will have a resolution of 100 dpi which will show a lot of pixelation. Even at 10x13, the printed resolution will be 200 dpi which will still show a lot of pixelation. And that presumes you'll use the entire image and not crop anything. If you want to blow images up that much, I think you should look for something with a higher resolution.
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Last edited by TCav; Oct 26, 2009 at 4:39 PM.
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Old Oct 26, 2009, 5:23 PM   #9
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What about the Canon Xti is has 3,888 x 2,592 resolution. I like both camera's. We are not to picky on the camera selection but I guess I better make sure we get something with a high resolution. Will the lens help with the 20x30 prints?
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Old Oct 26, 2009, 5:47 PM   #10
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the xti with the old (non-is) kit lens is not worth 400$ imo. its 2 generations old at this point and the new 18-55 with IS is MUCH better optically, and boasts image stabilization.

for ~50-100$ more you can get the newest generation camera from several manufacturers. all will have a better kit lens with either IS in-body or in-lens (depending on manufacturer).
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