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Old Nov 26, 2012, 6:33 PM   #1
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Default Young family camera: Canon t3i or???

Hi. We are a young family (Plus two twins on the way in February. ) I am trying to re-learn the basics of photography, and we have decided to invest in a good, quality dslr camera w an flexible or "all-purpose" lens. (Preferably Canon brand with quality IS.)

Others from the extended family use Canon t2i and I believe t3. They are amateur photographers and get lots of nice shots with a 18-200mm Canon lens.

We have thought about looking at a Canon t3i package w a 18-200 lens. Although expensive, this will probably cost around 950-1000 bucks, right? Thoughts? What about other alternatives, such as the Samsung NX20? Or would that be still considered not a true dslr? I am still quite new to the scene past high level point and shoots with extended zoom, but am a quick learner... We just want something that will last and help us to record memories without waiting a few seconds late for the kids to pose, or the constant blur of people in motion....and hopefully avoid blackouts from bad lighting, which is typical from cheaper p n s cameras.... Any help and suggestions would be much appreciated.
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Old Nov 26, 2012, 7:02 PM   #2
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Unfortunately, the kind of lens you seem to have in mind for a dSLR, will impose the same restrictions on you that a P&S camera would. Lenses like the 18-200 you mentioned are referred to, collectively, as superzoom lenses because of their significant zoom ratio. They are jack-of-all-trades-and-masters-of-none lenses. They seem to try to do lots of things and end up not doing any of them particularly well. Multiple lenses of less ambitious zoom ranges will provide better image quality and save you some money to boot. You'll just have to change lenses occasionally.

The T3i is a fine camera and will serve you well for the foreseeable future, when it is paired with appropriate lenses.
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Old Nov 26, 2012, 7:28 PM   #3
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The canon 18-200 is a good lens for what it is, unless you are into super detail pixel peeping it will serve well as an all in one lens. Other options in the same price range for the canon are the tamron 18-270 VC PZ, or the sigma 18-250 OS HSM. While none of them are prefect they do work well. And they give you the connivence of not having to swap lens when shooting outdoor in daylight. And with kids, you really do not always have time to change lenses.

But with the t3i and any of the 3 mention super zoom, you will still get much better photos then with a point and shoot superzoom.

It is a give and take. Give up a bit on the image quality long end of the zoom, but get the ability not to miss the shot when your kid does something remarkable you want to capture.
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Old Nov 27, 2012, 3:06 AM   #4
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Thanks for the responses. As I am also seeing the newer t4i with a few neat upgrades, including a 18-135mm lens. Would this possibly be a better investment right now instead of the t3i w 18-200mm? (the camera would also be used for video clips of up to 20 min)
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Old Nov 27, 2012, 3:39 AM   #5
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the 18-135 is a okay lens, not great but good. It is inline with the 18-200 in image quality. And for most casual shooting 135 is decent long.

The new t4i does have the new processor, but the same sensor. So it process a bit better and burst speed. all the other features are more fluff.

If pricing were similar, given the choice I would go with the better lens over the better body. And I would go with the 18-200 for the more friendly zoom. The 18-135 is not that much better that is off set the disadvantage of the shorter zoom imho. But I would personally go with the t3i body and the tamron 18-270 vc pz. That is the best superzoom lens crop sensor dslr's right now.
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Old Nov 27, 2012, 1:19 PM   #6
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hi the kit lens 18-55 isnt a bad lens and team it with the 55-250is and you have a very good starting package
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Old Nov 27, 2012, 1:26 PM   #7
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... with better image quality than you'll get with the 18-200.

... and for less money.
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Old Nov 27, 2012, 3:34 PM   #8
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It's also worth noting that the t4i AF system was upgraded from the t3i - all 9 points are cross type with high precision f2.8 center point. It also has the hybrid focus system to help with phase detect (along with sensor). Hard to quantify how much of an improvement but it is NOT the same focus system.
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Old Nov 27, 2012, 4:43 PM   #9
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Thanks for all the help. The more I read here and in the reviews, the more I am intrigued by the t4i... since it is only slightly more cost-wise, has some nice small upgrades (including the touch screen) with lots of heavy discounts on lenses. 55-250mm is ii lens is on sale, for example, with the 18-135 is stm already with the camera. From what I have gathered from reviews, they should work very well for our purposes. That should more than cover our needs for a while. Plus, the touch and buttons in the menu system make it even easier to handle on the fly. Thanks again for the tips. They have been taken into consideration, and definitely given some good insight.
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Old Nov 27, 2012, 5:14 PM   #10
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Good luck with whatever you decide.
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