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Old Oct 27, 2009, 12:52 PM   #11
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Because each DSLR manufacturer uses a proprietary mount for their brand, the lenses used on say Canon cameras, will not fit a Nikon camera, and for that matter they will not fit the Pentax, Olympus, and Sony brand DSLR cameras as well. So it is very important to understand that when you initially make your DSLR camera buying decision, you are essentially buying into a single DSLR camera system. That is true because, when you upgrade, you will only purchase a new DSLR camera body and keep your original lenses.
Hi Sarah,

I was just wondering, how would a beginner to DSLR systems, make a reasonable assessment as to which system and lens family to buy into? As lenses are vital and is proprietary to its own brand, how does one go about deciding between which lenses (e.g. Olympus vs Pentax or even 3rd party) to purchase, which subsequently 'subscribes' the purchaser to that brand's body?

I am assuming that majority of people venturing into DSLR will only need the kit lens and at most the second telephoto lens.

Sorry if this was covered somewhere or is common knowledge.

Thank you.

Justin
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Old Oct 27, 2009, 1:33 PM   #12
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There is really no right or wrong answer when making an assessment of what system to buy into.

It depends on certain factors. For general purpose photography any of the major brands offer excellent camera's that will fit your needs quite admirably. If however, you are doing sports shooting, particularly indoor, the canon/nikon systems are most proven in this area, and offer reasonably price fast prime medium telephotos. that is not to say it cannot be done with any other system, just that it is more proven with these systems.

if this is not within your need, then budget and personal preference towards handling characteristics and menu/button arrangement, as well as general feature preference will dictate the system that is best for you.

i always recommend finding a well-stocked camera store to go spend some quality time in. take a look at the models that fit your budget, and ask to handle each one of them. spend some time taking pictures, playing with the menu's, changing the ISO, etc. get a feel for which one best fits your hand size, your preference of shutter placement, etc. also throw them over your shoulder or neck, feel the weight, etc. then you can easily rule in or rule out some models and allow you to ask more focused questions in this thread. i.e. i liked the features/feel of camera A vs camera B, for my needs (i shoot this or that) which one do you think would fit the bill best. etc.
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Old Oct 27, 2009, 1:43 PM   #13
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Hi Sarah,

I was just wondering, how would a beginner to DSLR systems, make a reasonable assessment as to which system and lens family to buy into?
A lot depends on what that person's specific needs and wants are. The more 'basic' those are the less it matters, from a technical standpoint, what system you buy into.

But in some cases, it very much can make a difference what system you buy into:

If you prefer to use Liveview - Several Sony DSLRs have arguably the best implementation of liveview in a DSLR. So that system is a good fit

If you think you will eventually want a full frame DSLR: Canon, Nikon and Sony are your best bet systems - Oly is probaly the worst fit since there is almost no chance of them ever offering full frame

If flash photography is important - Nikon probably has the best implementation of flash systems

If sports photography is important - Nikon and Canon have the longest track record of bodies and lenses from beginner up through pro to meet sports shooting needs.

If you are extremely budget minded Pentax system allows you to use any pentax lens ever made - lots of our Pentax users routinely pick up new lenses on the used market.

If you must have anti-shake for everything then you want systems with anti-shake built into bodies: Pentax, Oly, Sony

As to lenses - certain types of photography benefit by certain types of lenses. So if you are interested in those types of photography you want to consider the cost and availability of lenses in those systems. Examples are

macro photography: depending on your expectations and subject you may need 1:4, 1:2 or 1:1 macro lens - different systems have different offerings for macro lenses.

Wildlife photography: 300mm, 400mm, 500mm lenses - preferably with fast focus ability. Different systems have different offerings.

Sports photography: fast bright primes for indoor sports work (50mm 1.8, 50mm 1.4, 85mm 1.8, 100mm 2.0 etc...). Mid range zoom and long telephoto with wide apertures (f2.8) and fast focus motors are beneficial. Again, different systems have different offerings.

I'm sure there are a lot more instances but this gives you an idea. That's why it's always best to deal with every person's needs individually. The more you understand what you want to shoot, the more people who shoot those types of things can give you an idea of what equipment is beneficial. And that can help steer you towards or away from certain systems.
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Old Oct 27, 2009, 1:47 PM   #14
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Thank you Hards.

I have read posts and advices, that its all in the lens, hence we should choose our lens first before body, so I was just curious how would a beginner decide which lens family to purchase/commit to, as some are proprietary lenses.

I searched and found this on another forum (I hope it is not against this forum's rules to post - if so, please remove it) http://www.dcresource.com/forums/showthread.php?t=8089

And true to what you said, what was written also commensurate with what you wrote - photography targets (normal day to day vs sports) and also budget. All-in-one/walk-around lenses vs specific lenses.

Now I see why it is so expensive :O

Justin
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Old Oct 27, 2009, 1:49 PM   #15
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A lot depends on what that person's specific needs and wants are. The more 'basic' those are the less it matters, from a technical standpoint, what system you buy into.
Wow, thank you John. That is very informative and helpful - will soak in all in

Much appreciated.

Justin
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Old Oct 27, 2009, 1:58 PM   #16
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Justin-

Yours is an excellent question, and no, this question has not been a part of this thread. To answer your question so that it applies to this thread specifically, let's approach your question from this point of view. The OP asked about the lowest price. So taking your question, Justin, where you asked about the kit lens which is included in the camera price, and a somewhat longer focal length short telephoto lens.

The Sony A-230 is the winner in that case with the the lowest price camera and kit lens. The Sony 55-200mm lens has received great reviews and it can be purchased at retail for around $(US)160.00 to $(US)175.00, and often less on Ebay, I purchased that lens this week on Ebay for $(US)83.00.

So that follows up on the OP's original question. If you are interested in Canon, they have a well priced 55-250mm lens. If you are interested in Nikon, they have a well priced 55-200mmVR lens. If you are intersted in Olympus, they have a well priced 40-150mm lens. If you are interested in Pentax, they have a well priced 50-200mm lens.

So, while Sony holds the better price and reviewed award, every one of the major camera manufacturer has a competing lens for a somewhat higher price.

Finally keeping with my promise earlier this morning about posting photo samples from entry level DSLR cameras, this is another cruise ship example but this time from the Pentax K-2000 model that is known as the Km model in Europe.

Have a great day.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Oct 28, 2009, 2:03 PM   #17
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Thank you very much for the information.. it is a very helpful comment, by differentiating the DSLR cameras into different catageries and also the detailed link about the lenses., which I had never known.., just coming into the photgraphic world..
But now I feel bit tensed, whether to go for a DSLR camera or just purchase a normal high end camera..:-).

Last edited by Vinoop; Oct 28, 2009 at 2:29 PM.
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Old Oct 28, 2009, 2:43 PM   #18
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Vinoop-

Thanks for the reply. Again the type of photos that your are now taking and those that you want to take in the future, plays into your decision on deciding in favor of a high end point & shoot camera.

You are going to find that there will not be much of a wide price spread between a high end point and shoot camera and an entry level DSLR camera. I would hazard the guess that you would probably use and keep the DSLR camera for a longer time.

Have a great day.

Sarah Joyce
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