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Old May 29, 2012, 5:45 PM   #1
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Default upgrading from film, need suggestions

i'm comfortable with my film slr camera, which is why i still shoot with it (as recently as two days ago). yet, as more and more film processors leave town i find that sooner or later i am going to need to get a real digital camera. i say real because i have a very compact samsung digital camera and a canon s5is and though they do they job, they are a pain to use.

with my minolta (film) camera, i am able to adjust the aperture, shutter speed and focal length all in a matter of seconds. i'm still not sure how to do these things on the digital cameras.

the ease of use (meaning acting like my old film slr) is just as important to me as most other features. i don't need the latest greatest (in fact, i'd be happy with my s5 if all these features were easily adjusted from the body).

what camera or line of cameras would you recommend to make the transition of film to digital the smoothest?
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Old May 29, 2012, 6:11 PM   #2
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with my minolta (film) camera, i am able to adjust the aperture, shutter speed and focal length all in a matter of seconds. i'm still not sure how to do these things on the digital cameras.
If you go with a Sony dSLR, you can do the same thing AND use your current autofocus lenses!

Sony bought the camera business from Konica Minolta, and all of Minolta's A-Mount autofocus lenses will work with Sony's line of dSLRs. (... with the exception of some Sigma lenses, which Sigma may fix for you.)
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Old May 29, 2012, 6:21 PM   #3
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Hi TCav, Good info! My lenses are all manual focus, however. Would they still fit any dslr camera? That would clearly be a plus.
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Old May 30, 2012, 3:58 AM   #4
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Your S5is has Aperture,Shutter priority and full manual adjustment- much like any SLR- and the adjustment of such will be quite similar on most digital cameras.
Obviously,a digital SLR will come closest to your film camera experience- with the zoom as you were- and aperture and shutter speed adjustment via way of a dial- unless you attach an older lens with manual aperture ring.
If you're looking at something less expensive than a DSLR- Fuji's HS10/20/30 bridge camera range gets pretty close to old school feel,with its manual zoom- but again,aperture and shutter speed adjustment is by way of buttons/dials....
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Old May 30, 2012, 4:15 AM   #5
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Unfortunately, Minolta's MC/MD manual focus lenses will not mount directly onto a modern dSLR, and the available adapters are hardly worth the effort (as I discovered when I tried to reuse the lenses I had for my SRT-202.)

You could still take a look at Sony's line of dSLR cameras, which are quite capable, but their line of available lenses isn't as broad as Canon's or Nikon's.

One of my main problems with P&S digicams is the power zoom. I shoot mostly sports/action/wildlife, and very much prefer to zoom manually.

What do you want to shoot?
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Old May 30, 2012, 8:15 AM   #6
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Thanks for the replies. I suppose I will have to go get my hands on some cameras to see what is comfortable. I have in the past, and remember it still being slightly more complex than what I am used to doing. I guess that's the learning curve. I think to get the feel I want, dslr is the way to go.

I will mostly be shooting friends/family, nature and night shots.
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Old May 30, 2012, 8:47 AM   #7
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given your existing manual focus lenses I would suggest considering a mirror less camera such as the Olympus OM-D EM-5, Olympus Pen series, Panasonic G3/GX1, or Sony Nex 5N and up.

For $15-$20 you can put your MF glass on these cameras and be shooting no problem. You control the aperture and the camera can do the metering and shutter or you can control those two from the camera.
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Old May 30, 2012, 9:01 AM   #8
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There are a number of very good lenses that will do what you want, so lens selection shouldn't be a factor in your camera selection.

In addition to all the things that your film SLR can do that dSLRs can also do, there are a bunch of things a dSLR can do that your film SLR can't. One, of course, is that you can get a lot more shots onto a roll. Another is that you can adjust the ISO in the middle of a roll, you can set the ISO higher than any film you ever heard of, and you can even set the camera to adjust the ISO as it sees fit.

But if you can't comfortably hold the camera, if you can't find the controls and commands when you need them, you'll miss shots and be dissatisfied with the camera. So find one you like.
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Old May 30, 2012, 9:31 AM   #9
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But if you can't comfortably hold the camera, if you can't find the controls and commands when you need them, you'll miss shots and be dissatisfied with the camera. So find one you like.
This is the biggest issue as I see it, too. I'll poke around in some stores and see what feels right. thanks.
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Old May 30, 2012, 9:43 AM   #10
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There are a number of very good lenses that will do what you want, so lens selection shouldn't be a factor in your camera selection.
call me frugal but I see the fact that you have a stable of existing glass that you are already familiar with as a big influencing factor on what camera you purchase

+1 on everything else you said though
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