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Old Aug 23, 2012, 4:16 PM   #1
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Default Help choosing a DSLR please

I have decided to buy a DSLR and am torn between a Canon or a Nikon. I am thinking of a good entry to medium level camera. Spending about 300-350.
Also need to look at future lens and which ones are the best/cheapest to buy? Although i don't plan on buying many really.
Need to get this right as it will be a one and only dslr - well for a long time anyway.
I know nothing abou DSLR cameras so it will be a big learning curve but i like to learn.
What is the best buy and why?
Many thanks
E
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Old Aug 23, 2012, 6:06 PM   #2
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What do you want to shoot?
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Old Aug 24, 2012, 5:29 AM   #3
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Given your budget, you're obviously looking at an entry level model- irrespective of which brand you choose.
Most entry level offerings offer very similar spec's- and similar output abilities- that being very good in the right hands.
Many would suggest Nikon or Canon's entry level model- and indeed why not- they're good cameras with a huge back catalogue of accessories and lenses- though to be fair,the lenses offered by other manufacturers will cover any shooting scenario- not least by third party manufacturers.
With regards lens prices- Sony and Pentax DSLR's have image stabilisers built into the body on their entry level offerings- making lens purchases less expensive for obvious reasons- and even old second hand (and inexpensive) manual focus lenses are thus stabilised.
At the price point you're looking at, it may be worth- where possible- to try some models out in the hand- as given their similar abilities/specs, can quite often be the deciding factor for many, with the layouts and user menus suitable for some, but not others.
Also,consider some slightly older models,dusting around in some stores/warehouses- as superseded models can be very inexpensive,still competent and still with full warranty.
For example, Nikon's D3000 is being offered at Argos online for a paltry 279 !!
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Old Aug 24, 2012, 6:13 AM   #4
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For "300-350", you're not going to get much of a camera and lens, and if your resources are limited, it's especially important that you set off in a direction that is maintainable and will suit your purposes now and in the future.

So, what do you wnat to shoot?
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Old Aug 24, 2012, 6:30 AM   #5
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Go to a camera shop and have a feel and look of the different ones you fancy (Camera not salesperson!!) then decide!
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Old Aug 24, 2012, 7:51 AM   #6
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To the question what do i want to shoot, i have to say everything. Since that question has been asked what subjects will i not be able to shoot with an entry level dslr/the usual lens that comes with it to start with? I am not planning on buying a lot of lenses anyway, certainly none to begin with until i am sure i like DSLR's.
I have been told that now is a good time to buy as the new cameas are coming in so the older models, as Simon mentioned, are cheap and, apparently, i was told, that now that summer is over and people don't usually buy cameras again until Christmas as presents the shops reduce cameras to make space. Is this true in your opinion?
I am looking for one in a sale which sometimes offers two lenses.
Simon, i am happy to consider older models, even second hand if i knew the person selling one that i could trust. I didn't know about the image stabiliser being built in so thanks for that info. I have always steered clear of DSLR's but always fancied one at the same time so i am not looking for an expensive one yet as i need to learn about them and make sure i enjoy using one.
I have been told they are wonderful and that i will love one and i will see a big improvement on one compared to my Panny. Yes i know it's not the camera it's the person behind it that counts really but i am happy to learn and give it a good go. I read a lot from this site to learn too.
What are he main things to look for on a DSLR when buying one, i will remember the IS as i need that now.
Thanks for the help.
E.
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Old Aug 24, 2012, 9:35 AM   #7
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If you're looking at a twin lens kit on a budget- maybe consider the Pentax K-r kit being offered currently via Curry's online.
Coming with the 18-55 and 50-200mm lens for a very reasonable 380.
http://www.currys.co.uk/gbuk/pentax-...22500-pdt.html
An a review of the K-r...
http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/pentaxkr

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Old Aug 24, 2012, 9:46 AM   #8
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Simon, believe it or not i was just reading reviews of the Pentax Kx on Amazon and like what i read. I like the AA battery thing as i have a lot of those still new.
What will i be able to shoot with those lenses - as i said i have tons to learn but don't want to keep buying cameras i cannot afford so want one to last for many years. I guess at my age i will stay an armature photographer. I also like that the lenses are not too expensive and can be bought quite cheaply for the pentax, but i don't want to buy too many at all, too heavy for me to carry around. like macro and wild life the best with a little sports shooting too.
Off to read the links you sent and my many thanks to you too Sir.
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Old Aug 24, 2012, 10:00 AM   #9
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You misunderstand. At the entry level, manufacturers make compromises to be able to sell the best product at a reduced price, and different manufacturers make different compromises, each of which will affect different ways in which you might use a camera. For instance:
  • Canon has the best AF system in its entry level dSLRs (except in the T3/1100D). So if you'll be shooting sports/action/wildlife, you'd be better off with a Canon.
  • Nikon's entry level dSLRs don't have AF motors, so they'll only AF with AF-S lenses, not the cheaper AF lenses, so considering you have limited resources, you should make sure the cost difference isn't significant for lenses that will cover what you want to shoot.
  • Nikon, Pentax, and Sony entry level dSLRs all use Sony's 16MP sensor, which has slightly better image quality than Canon's 18MP sensor in its entry level dSLRs.
  • Pentax and Sony have image stabilization in the body, while Canon and Nikon use stabilized lenses to reduce motion blur due to camera shake. As a result, older Pentax and Sony(Minolta) lenses can be used on their new dSLRs, and will be stabilized. So if you go with Canon or Nikon, and you need image stabilization, you'll need more current, and more expensive, stabilized lenses. But if you go with a Pentax or Sony dSLR, you can use 20+ year old used lenses and get the image stabilization you need.
BTW, avoid the package deals. They usually include accessories of questionable value and quality, and the extra lens(es) generally aren't as good as third party lenses which may even be cheaper.
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Old Aug 24, 2012, 10:11 AM   #10
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Many thanks TCav. so far i have read reviews of the Pentax K20d, and the K-x. I like the weatherproofing on the first one but don't know what an IR filter is. the latter is supposed to be the fasted in the entry level cameras but don't know what the Cross Processing Mode is. I do like the use of AA batteries but this wouldn't be a deal breaker.
Are you saying that the Canon 100 isn't good with its AF, so don't get that one?
I like that i can buy cheaper used lenses too with the Pentax, haven't read about the sony yet.
This is all educational and informative and i like that the image quality is better on a DSLR too.
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