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Old May 17, 2010, 3:48 PM   #1
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Default First-time dSLR buyer - $1,200 budget

I'm about a day away from jumping on my first SLR. I have been doing quite a bit of research on my own, as I always do when making a relatively big purchase like this.

I have to admit, based on reviews and recommendations from a few friends, I have been leaning toward the Canon T2i.




A couple important notes about myself, to help you in helping me (kind of in priority order):
  1. I am a Realtor (residential).
  2. I have two kids, 5 months and 3.5 years.
  3. For P&S cameras, my past includes the Canon A80, SD850, SD880. I have always been a pretty big fan of Canon, but I would definitely consider another brand.
  4. HD movie is important to me. Primarily short clips (kids and houses), which is all we do with our camcorder anyway.
  5. $1,200 initial starting budget is relatively firm.
There's a local shop about 20 miles from my house that has the T2i in stock (only 2 of them). Called, and here's what they quoted me:
  • Canon T2i w/ kit lens - $829.99
  • Canon EF-S 55-250mm F/4-5.6 IS - $299.99
  • $200 off (if I purchase both of the above) = $929.98 + $67.80 (tax)
  • Mack 3-year Diamond Coverage - $139.99 (is it worth it?)
  • 16GB Sandisk Extreme III - $89.99
Total = $1,233.16

I would also likely pick up the Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 from B&H for $720, but not right off the bat, unless someone thinks I should skip the 55-250, and go for the wide from the start.

Your help is really appreciated, so thanks in advance.

Last edited by ckeegan; May 17, 2010 at 3:57 PM.
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Old May 17, 2010, 3:53 PM   #2
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For you work, I would get the ef 10-22, or tokina 11-16 or sigma 10-20. It will help with photos. There is a member who is also a realtor who have posted photos for work shot with the wide angle lenses. Seems like a must for realtor to have a good ultra wide angle.

But I would save a little money and go with the tokina or sigma over the 720 for the canon ef 10-22mm

http://forums.steves-digicams.com/ph...otography.html
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Old May 17, 2010, 4:04 PM   #3
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For you work, I would get the ef 10-22, or tokina 11-16 or sigma 10-20. It will help with photos. There is a member who is also a realtor who have posted photos for work shot with the wide angle lenses. Seems like a must for realtor to have a good ultra wide angle.

But I would save a little money and go with the tokina or sigma over the 720 for the canon ef 10-22mm

http://forums.steves-digicams.com/ph...otography.html
I agree, I would probably end up with a 10-22 or similar, sooner rather than later. Fortunately, I have a closing per week for the next 6 weeks, so that'll help.

Am I right in saying that it totally makes sense to go for the 55-250, since the $200 instant savings is in place, or don't spend $300 to save $200, and use the $100 toward a wide lens?
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Old May 17, 2010, 4:16 PM   #4
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The comes down to what else you shoot, having a long zoom for some people is helpful, and fits their shooting needs. Like running after kids shot and stuff. But if you are not into needing a long zoom, then it makes no sense in getting the 55-250. If you did find yourself zoom out allot with your old point and shoots, then it will be worth getting the 55-250mm. It is a very good lens. But if you shoot out door sports, I would past on the 55-250 and opt for the 70-300mm IS USM down the road. It has a fast AF motor for action.
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Old May 17, 2010, 4:21 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ckeegan View Post
...There's a local shop about 20 miles from my house that has the T2i in stock (only 2 of them). Called, and here's what they quoted me:
  • Canon T2i w/ kit lens - $829.99
  • Canon EF-S 55-250mm F/4-5.6 IS - $299.99
  • $200 off (if I purchase both of the above) = $929.98 + $67.80 (tax)
That's probably what I'd do (go with that package). For only $100 more to get the 55-250mm zoom so that you'll have a longer lens that's relatively small and light for it's focal range, that looks like a good bet. As for the extended warranty. I never get them. You'll have to decide if it's worth it.

Then, get a cheaper memory card. For example, something like this Class 10 Transcend Class 16GB SDHC card for $46.99 delivered.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16820208535

Is the Extreme III card they have marked 30MB/Second? If so, it might be faster. You'll have to decide if it's worth twice as much for the small increase in performance.
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Old May 17, 2010, 4:26 PM   #6
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I totally agree with Jim, I got the transcend clas 10 16gb card form Newegg. And allow me to go from 18 high res jpeg burst before buffer lag to 24 shots. So it is a bit faster then my class 6 card. And it is a excellent price. Only 4 dollars more to a very good class 6 card.
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Old May 17, 2010, 4:32 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shoturtle View Post
The comes down to what else you shoot, having a long zoom for some people is helpful, and fits their shooting needs. Like running after kids shot and stuff. But if you are not into needing a long zoom, then it makes no sense in getting the 55-250. If you did find yourself zoom out allot with your old point and shoots, then it will be worth getting the 55-250mm. It is a very good lens. But if you shoot out door sports, I would past on the 55-250 and opt for the 70-300mm IS USM down the road. It has a fast AF motor for action.
Interesting point, and thanks for the input. I guess I'd have a hard time passing up the $200 savings. I guess I could always sell it on eBay for $200ish, and then put that toward the wide-angle. I'd still be up $100. I just think down the road (tee ball, etc), I'd want the extra zoom capability.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimC View Post
That's probably what I'd do (go with that package).

Then, get a cheaper memory card. For example, something like this Class 10 Transcend Class 16GB SDHC card for $46.99 delivered.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16820208535

Is the Extreme III card they have marked 30MB/Second? If so, it might be faster. You'll have to decide if it's worth twice as much for the small increase in performance.
Yeah, that Extreme III is marked 30MB/sec, which I thought might help with the HD video stuff. If you don't think I need it, I would definitely go for something less expensive.
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Old May 17, 2010, 4:43 PM   #8
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The transcend if just as fast, but with HD, all you need is a class 6, the class 10 does not affect HD with the T1i, I have used a high quality class 4 and it work just find on HD, burst shots now that is where the class 6 and class 10 blow by the class 4.
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Old May 17, 2010, 4:46 PM   #9
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The 16GB Transcend Class 10 should be plenty fast enough for HD video. Personally, that's what I'd get in an SDHC card (one of the Transcend Class 10 cards, the larger the better, as they have a relatively low cost/MB in a relatively fast card). The Sandisk is probably a faster card. But, I'm not going to spend twice as much for a small increase in performance under a very limited set of conditions (i.e., shooting multiple bursts in a row using continuous drive mode with raw files where you may fill up the buffer faster than the camera can empty it before it slows down (where frames per second with a full buffer can vary some with a faster card). Shooting video (or jpeg images), I'd doubt you'd see any difference between them.
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Old May 17, 2010, 6:52 PM   #10
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I'm going to suggest something a little different. You didn't mention it as a requirement for the camera, but since you're a realtor, I suspect that you'll want to take photos of interiors. With the same lens, a Nikon, a Pentax, or a Sony dSLR would have a wider angle of view than a Canon. In addition, you may find yourself in a position of having to get by with available light, and a stabilized camera body from eithe rPentax or Sony will reduce (if not eliminate) motion blur due to camera shake when using longer shutter speeds. And since recording video is important to you, and none of Sony's current dSLRs can record video, I think a Pentax would best meet your requirements.
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Last edited by TCav; May 17, 2010 at 6:56 PM.
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