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JM667 Apr 14, 2010 5:41 PM

I have been rethinking my new camera plan...
Awhile I go, I started this post about getting a new camera. After checking back here everyday, and doing other research, I have been trying to figure out what to do. So I wanted to see if this is a good plan or not.

As I've mentioned before, I feel if a camera is pocketable, it will go everywhere with me. If its not, and has to fit in a bag, I am not saying I won't bring it everytime, but its probably not going to be with me 100% of the time. So while right now I have two older cameras (one pocketable and one not), I am thinking now maybe to replace both of them with a good pocketable size camera and DSLR. Not both at the same time, I don't want to put out all that money at once because I still need to buy a camcorder too. I was just thinking that if I only get a compact, I am not going to be happy with the performance (especially for moving objects or indoors in low light), and won't be able to do some things with it. And if I get a bridge camera, I feel while it may have a lot more features than a compact, but since the price of it is closer to the price of DSLR, I may be disappointed so may as well get a DSLR. Two things I can think of right now are being able to snap a picture instantly as soon as you turn it on and the shallow DOF pictures. And since I am interested in photography and learning more, I dont feel it would be a waste. So does this sound like a good idea to maybe get a DSLR first, then also replace that compact with a better one soon after?

shoturtle Apr 14, 2010 6:19 PM

If you are looking for a compromise something like a olympus EPL-1 EVIL may be more compact and have pretty much all the ability of a dslr minus the sports shooting. It is about 560-600 right now.

But if you want a full dslr. It makes allot of sense if you are going to dwell deeper into photography as it will give you more abilities. Now with a dslr, it comes down to systems. And which one works best for your budget and needs.

tallymom Apr 14, 2010 6:37 PM

Take this fwiw, but I actually just sold my Nikon D90 and opted for a compact camera for the time being. I found myself rarely taking pictures with it because it was so bulky. I do hope to one day take a photography class and will buy one then. Since I received my compact camera, it has never left my purse!

mtclimber Apr 14, 2010 9:11 PM

tallymom makes a really excellent point-

If your photographic expertise and skills are on the low end of the scale, the DSLR might indeed be more of a challenge leading to ultimate disappointment, than you expect.

A DSLR kit is a substantially larger kit when you consider the multiple lenses, and supporting accessories like an external flash etc. The DSLR goes in a larger, heavier bag, not a small bag. DSLR camera have less in camera processing because there is the expectation that the DSLR user is going to post process every image.

Shoturtle is correct. A camera like the Olympus EPL1 (a micro 4/3rds camera) offers many of the DSLR features, interchangeable lens, and substantially improved image quality, and the ability to use high ISO settings that a compact cannot offer. And it comes in a much small and lighter package.

Sarah Joyce

shoturtle Apr 14, 2010 9:15 PM

Actually some dslr have the processing ability of a point and shoot, but you need to set them up. I am a lazy PP guy, so I set up my camera to do as much of the work for me as possible. :)

tallymom Apr 14, 2010 9:21 PM


Originally Posted by mtclimber (Post 1079948)
tallymom makes a really excellent point-

If your photographic expertise and skills are on the low end of the scale, the DSLR might indeed be more of a challenge leading to ultimate disappointment, than you expect.

ITA with this! Although I did take some really good pictures with my D90, I feel that actually taking a class and diving in so to speak would have led me to use it to its fullest potential. Plus I had it in a bigger Crumpler bag and it was just a pain to take anywhere whereas my Sony HX5 sits in a nice little Lowepro Ridge 30 and easily fits in my purse or on my DH's belt :).

JM667 Apr 15, 2010 3:05 AM

Ahhhhh just when I think I figured it out, now you guys got me rethinking again! (Which is good though). So as far as my skills are, I wouldnt say they are on the very low end of the spectum. While I am by no means advanced, I do understand aperture, shutter speed, ISO, etc. and want to learn more about them. So I am not someone that just uses auto mode and takes their memory card to the store to print them out. I don't do a lot of post processing, but if I am going to print something, I do usually have to lighten up something, or remove some shadows, or whatever. Not an expert with photoshop or anything, but do use it to make some tweaks.

Again the main reason I was thinking of this is for the lag. I am sure newer compacts have much faster speeds than what I have now. But are they still fast enough where I won't miss a shot? For example, on Easter when the kids were hunting eggs, I would follow someone around with my camera prefocused ready to take a shot, and of course there is no lag once I snap the shot. But if I saw something else happen that I wasn't focused on, by the time I focus on that, its too late. The person there using the DSLR had no problem. Now if I have a newer compact, am I going to be able to get those shots?

As far as the bag, I know its larger. From talking to people that use them, and reading around here, it seems like if you are going somewhere where you will be taking pics indoors or at a party or something, you don't need to pack around the longer lenses. They just bring the camera with the 18-55 lens or whatever in a bag that just fits that. And if going somehwere where you might need a long zoom, then bring the big bag. Is that true for most people? And at least I'd have no problem with using that at home anyways.

I guess I am just really tired of missing shots due to lag and in poor lighting conditions. And if I have a compact with me somewhere where I dont really intend to take a bunch of pics, at least its there just in case. Oh well, I knew this decision wouldnt be this easy! Why does this have to be so hard?!?!?! :) Thanks again for the input.

shoturtle Apr 15, 2010 7:56 AM

It is hard because there is no such thing as the perfect camera. We all live with some compromise with every camera. I have 2 point and shoots, a dslr, and an EVIL. Each has the uses and draw backs.


mtclimber Apr 15, 2010 11:31 AM


I think that you might want to read up a bit on Micro 4/3rd cameras like the EPL1. The camera action is fast, the image quality is excellent, and you can get by easily with two lenses. For example, I use the Olympus 14-42mm and the Panasonic 40-200mm lenses. All of the Panasonic and Olympus lenses built to M4/3 standards are interchangeable. The multiplier factor for all M4/3 lenses is 2X. Therefore, with my two lenses I can cover a range of 28mm to 400mm expressed in 35mm terms. And best of all I end up with a very small camera bag that easily carries the EPL1, the two lenses, and an external flash.

Perhaps you don't want to change lenses? But still want a smaller camera with more zoom. The new Canon SX-210 is a good choice, as is the new Sony HX5. So you can look at them as an alternative choice.

So give it some thought, we want to help you find camera that is really correct for you. This is not a one size fits all situation. We want you find the really correct camera for your needs.

Sarah Joyce

JM667 Apr 15, 2010 2:51 PM

Great! Thanks a lot guys. I will check out those Micro 4/3s cameras then. Is the speed as fast as DSLR, meaning can you turn it on and snap a shot immediately with no lag? With just a quick search, it looks like that camera with both of those lenses is around $1000, which is probably a little more than I wanted to spend, but I will consider it. I'll try to handle one next time I go to a store to see how it feels.

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