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Old Jan 16, 2010, 10:45 AM   #1
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Default Cannon Powershot SX20 IS?or DSLR...

I'm looking at the cannon Power shot sx20 is and just wanted to here peoples thoughts and opinions or if you would recommend something different. I love photography but I just can not justify the expense of a DSRL camera (which is what i really want) right now. So, I have been looking at the pro-sumer models. I love the flip out LCD, and the 20x zoom. I am a mother of young children so I take a lot of pictures of them, but I also really love photographing nature, both landscapes and marco. Price is a factor, I would like to spend under 400.00. I also want has much manual control has I can get. I'm using and Power shot A710 right now that I like ok, but it's dieing on me. I'm pretty sure from over use. Is this the right one for me or is there something better?

Last edited by my1hd; Jan 16, 2010 at 5:42 PM.
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Old Jan 16, 2010, 11:59 AM   #2
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OK after looking a little more I'm also leaning toward the sony h20. I can not find reviews on this site though. The price seems much more in my budget and the smaller size is always nice. Can you use this camera in full manual though?
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Old Jan 16, 2010, 12:15 PM   #3
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my1hd-

Welcome to the Forum We're glad you dropped by.

The Sony H-20 is a very good camera. It has the best built-in flash unit in its class and it can be used in the manual mode.

However, it does not have a viewfinder or an EVF, and it does not have a wide angle.

Have a great weekend.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Jan 16, 2010, 5:32 PM   #4
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Ok , now my husband is saying maybe I just just go ahead nad buy an entry level DLSR, but now I'm driving myself nuts trying to figure out which one. I will not be able to afford very expensive lenses is it still worth it?
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Old Jan 16, 2010, 6:02 PM   #5
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Yes, it is worth it, in my humble opinion. There are a number of entry-level DSLRs on the market that aren't that much more expensive than the top-line point-and-shoot megazooms like the Canon SX20.

Not only that, you'll be surprised what kind of images you can get with the kit lenses. You can always opt for better glass as you gain confidence and experience. You don't have to do it all at once.

Some suggestions (all prices from B&H Photo in NYC):

Pentax K-x w/18-55mm kit lens goes for about $549. This camera offers some of the best high-ISO performance among entry-level DSLRs - which helps make up for the relatively slow kit lenses that most DSLRs come with these days.

Canon XS w/18-55mm kit lens goes for about $449. This camera has been out for a while and may be about to be replaced soon. But that's no reason to overlook it.

Nikon D3000 with 18-55mm kit lens goes for about $549.

The Sony A230 with 18-55mm kit lens goes for about $429. This is another older camera that's due for replacement. B&H offers a two-lens kit that also includes a 55-200mm telephoto lens for $578.

The Olympus E-620 with a 14-42mm kit lens goes for about $567... $666 for a two-lens kit that also includes a 40-150mm telephoto lens. This Olympus is a four-thirds camera, which means its crop factor is 2x. That means a 14-42 lens works like a 28-84mm lens on a traditional 35mm film camera or "full-frame" digital SLR. With most of the other cameras above the crop factor is 1.5 - meaning an 18-55mm lens works like a 27-82mm lens. For the Canon, the crop factor is 1.6... which means an 18-55mm lens acts like a 28-88mm lens.

The going rate for a Canon SX20 IS is $400 these days... some of those cameras listed above are only $30-$50 more expensive. Granted, you'll probably want to add a telephoto lens later. But there's no rush. But if you do want that second lens now, some of those two-lens packages offer a lot of value.

Also note that the Sony and Nikon both DO NOT offer live view - which is to say the ability to use the rear LCD to frame images. But, the truth is, live view in a DSLR tends to be best used for tripod or macro work. You'll find using the viewfinder is by far the best way to frame photos - holding the camera up to your face/eye also helps steady the camera. Holding a DSLR out like a tiny point-and-shoot camera looks and feels very awkward and unbalanced. If you like the Sony or Nikon and really want live view, there's the Sony A330 and the Nikon D5000. But they are more money.

Good luck and ask more questions if you need answers!

Last edited by Biro; Jan 16, 2010 at 6:05 PM.
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Old Jan 16, 2010, 6:09 PM   #6
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If you can get to a dSLR then for someone wanting to learn the more technical side and creative side of photography it is a must. For learning the basics and helping improve the photographic eye then you are going to do well with something like the SX20. I like nothing more than getting out and shooting with one of my dSLRs but there are times when I take out my SX1 (very similar to the SX20) as it is just so much more convenient.

As has been pointed out already you won't be able to get the same sort of focal length coverage with a dSLR without a selection of lenses but the quality is considerably higher in many situation from a dSLR.
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Old Jan 16, 2010, 6:17 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Biro View Post

Not only that, you'll be surprised what kind of images you can get with the kit lenses. You can always opt for better glass as you gain confidence and experience. You don't have to do it all at once.



Pentax K-x w/18-55mm kit lens goes for about $549. This camera offers some of the best high-ISO performance among entry-level DSLRs - which helps make up for the relatively slow kit lenses that most DSLRs come with these days.

Canon XS w/18-55mm kit lens goes for about $449. This camera has been out for a while and may be about to be replaced soon. But that's no reason to overlook it.


The Sony A230 with 18-55mm kit lens goes for about $429. This is another older camera that's due for replacement. B&H offers a two-lens kit that also includes a 55-200mm telephoto lens for $578.

The Olympus E-620 with a 14-42mm kit lens goes for about $567... $666 for a two-lens kit that also includes a 40-150mm telephoto lens. This Olympus is a four-thirds camera, which means its crop factor is 2x. That means a 14-42 lens works like a 28-84mm lens on a traditional 35mm film camera or "full-frame" digital SLR. With most of the other cameras above the crop factor is 1.5 - meaning an 18-55mm lens works like a 27-82mm lens. For the Canon, the crop factor is 1.6... which means an 18-55mm lens acts like a 28-88mm lens.



Good luck and ask more questions if you need answers!
Thank you so much! Every time I look into DSLR's I read htings about how you need all these fancy lenses, that I will not be able to afford. At this point I am maxed out on my P+S. I need a faster camera with more options better ISO quality etc. I have actually been eyeng a few of these. I have always owned Cannon P+S cameras so i was just going to go with a cannon, but seeing has I don't own a money tree . I'm wondering if I wouldn't do better with a lesser known brand. I think Nikon is out because from what I understand their lenses are very pricey? I really LOVE photography, but it is just a hobby (well and I take family pics) so I can not break the bank. Cost is probably my biggest concern. Cost of the body and cost for me to add on lenses. I do not need the latest/greatest technology. I think I take some pretty great pics with my A710. I do tend to be a little shakey so I think I would need some sort of IS. Do any of these have that? I'm also a smaller person (5'1) and I have 3 small children so I do not want a HUGE camera. I know DSLR will be bigger then a point and shoot, but i think I want a smaller model. I have been seriously considering the sony, but then I found Olympus 520 pretty cheap too. Is any of my ramblings making things clearer? LOL
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Old Jan 16, 2010, 8:00 PM   #8
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my1hd-

For what it is worth. Several years ago as a hand me down I got a Canon 20D body. It was nice, but large. It was a capable camera in its day. On a whim about a year ago I found a Sony A-230 body on E-Bay for a sweet price. I week later, much to my surprise, I found a Sigma 18-125mm lens in the Sony A mount for a great price.

Finally, I had a DSLR that was the right size fitted my hands nicely. I'm sure some would complain it was too small for them. For right around $400, I had a DSLR that felt good in hand. Since then I have had a ball, and I learn every day.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Jan 16, 2010, 9:09 PM   #9
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I'm am driving myself insane and I have spent all day looking at camera's. After everything I have read and all the cameras I have looked at I'm thinking the Olympus 520 is the best one for me. It seems like the kit lenses aren't bad and I get get a kit with 2 lenses in my price range. Plus it has the image stabilization and live view if I need to keep and second eye on my toddler. What do you think? Oh are the lenses really expensive for these?
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Old Jan 16, 2010, 9:32 PM   #10
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the 520 is not a bad camera, but is starting to fall behind the more recent entry-level options, especially in image quality.

i think it would be worth looking into a better entry level dslr with 1 lens, and then getting a 2nd lens later down the line when you can save up again.

for a price similar to a 520 with 2 lenses, you can probably get one of the following with 1 lens.

Pentax KX
Olympus 620 (quite a large step up from the 520)
Canon XSI
Nikon D5000
Sony A230 (probably get this with 2 lenses for that price)
Sony A330 (if you really like live view, but the regular viewfinder is small)
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