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Old Oct 11, 2006, 3:58 PM   #11
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kenbalbari wrote:
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I think this was a good suggestion:

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If you can't afford a mid-end DSLR, you can look at low-end DSLRs or perhaps one year old models
Perhaps the models which are a year or more old have changed by now.

Also, you are going to want to pay alot of attention to the lenses. What is available in your budget might have a big impact in that price range. Both Nikon and Olympus have very good kit lenses, which makes it possible to get most of what you want in your price range. The Pentax K100 D has in camera image stabilization, and if you really want stabilization, that's the most cost effective way to get it (opposed to buying costly stabilized lenses).

For many of these cameras, you might also be able to find good older lenses available used.

For newer lenses, for those which don't have good kit leneses available, look at some of the better Sigma lenses which are made specifically for digital cameras, particularly the brighter ones, starting with f2.8 (or in some f2.8 fixed). For your longer telephoto, however, in your price range you will likely have to accept a less bright lens. But you will still get good results from the some of the less expensive zooms outdooors with sunlight and stopped down to about f8. For example:

Sigma 17-70 f2.8-4.5 $340.00
http://www.slrgear.com/reviews/showp...uct/349/cat/10
Sigma 70-300 f4.5-5.6 $200.00
http://www.slrgear.com/reviews/showp...uct/230/cat/31

Also keep in mind the focal length multiplier for each model, 1.5x for Pentax, Nikon or Sony, 1.6x for the Canon, and 2x for Olympus 4:3 cameras. Thus with a 1.5x factor, the 17-70 lens mentioned above covers an effective focal length range of 25.5-105.5mm.


Hmmm..... Yea, the more I think about it, the more I'm comming to the realization that I'm perhapse overthinking this whole thing. I have decided one thing, I don't want to have to wait another two years, Perhapse what I dislike about my current camera, is that it's simply too much of a compromise! I'd want an outdoor sport/action camera first. A bright, high quality, medium focal length telephotozoom would go a long way toward making me happy till I could aford to re-assess and accessorize with additional lenses, etc..... I could live without IS and a simple teleconverter would probably get me by till I could aford another lense. Eventually, I might consider getting aseparate point & Click, or even a digital video camera.
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Old Oct 12, 2006, 1:53 AM   #12
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I'd want an outdoor sport/action camera first.
Well, the needs for sports and action can go a bit beyond some of what you mentioned earlier, which was more family outings, events, weekend trips, landscapes, scenery, and wildlife.

Really any DSLR will be able to do all of this to some degree. But for sports and action you might pay a bit more attention to things like burst rates, buffer size, and autofocus speed in choosing your camera.

And you also might want a lens more like an f2.8 50-150:
http://www.slrgear.com/reviews/showp...uct/995/cat/31

But, that is a $650 lens. So it would be tough to keep it under $1000 with that.


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Old Oct 12, 2006, 3:08 AM   #13
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well, if it's for sports then a Canon might be a good choice, they're known for their huge selection of lenses for this kind of photography.

If you liked the 20D of your friend, you could try and find one on the 2nd hand market, and invest in a good lens...

Of course the 30D will be excellent too

I wouldn't advise any of the "Rebels" to you (300,350,400D) as I find them rather small and "over-compact", and considering you want a big grip...

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Old Oct 12, 2006, 7:28 AM   #14
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Actually, given the budget discussed, the Nikon D70 he mentioned in the first post, a year and a half ago, remains a good choice. The slightly more up to date D70s is available with the 18-70 kit lens for about $830.

That's one of the best kit lenses out there. An f3.5-4.5, it's not quite as bright as some of the aftermarket f2.8 I was suggesting earlier, but unlike some of the cheap kit lenses it doesn't have to be stopped down alot to be sharp either. It's giving you good quality throughout at f4.0-4.5.

http://www.slrgear.com/reviews/showp...uct/131/cat/13

With that as a fine general purpose lens, you can then look at whatever higher quality lenses you wish to add. If you want more zoom in the meantime, add the Nikon 55-200 f4.0-5.6 for about $180.

http://www.slrgear.com/reviews/showp...uct/133/cat/13

Yes you will want a better quality brighter lens eventually if you are serious about things like sports shooting. But get some experience with a lens like that one and you'll have a better idea what you need and want before spending another $800 on the lens.

It looks to me like that package gives you most of what you want right now for about $1000 (or maybe $10-20 over).

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Old Oct 12, 2006, 10:41 AM   #15
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kenbalbari wrote:
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Actually, given the budget discussed, the Nikon D70 he mentioned in the first post, a year and a half ago, remains a good choice. The slightly more up to date D70s is available with the 18-70 kit lens for about $830.

Yes you will want a better quality brighter lens eventually if you are serious about things like sports shooting. But get some experience with a lens like that one and you'll have a better idea what you need and want before spending another $800 on the lens.

It looks to me like that package gives you most of what you want right now for about $1000 (or maybe $10-20 over).

I spent several hours at a "Wolf Camera" here in town yesterday, and asked to handle the D70, D50, D80, D200, Canon 20D, 30D, XTi, Sony Alpha, and Pentax K100, and a couple others side by side. A few things quickly became clear, I quickly eliminated the Pentax, and the Canon Rebels. They where too small and the controls placed too closely together for my hands. My thumb fell directly over the toggle affecting the camera settings everytime I picked one up. The Sony was nice, just didn't have the lense options, and didn't seem quite as well thought out as the Canon's and Nikons. I quickly found I really appreciated the faster focus and burst rates of the D200, with the added zoom range of the Nikkor 70-200Zoom butat $865 for the lense, and $1600+ for the camera, the pairwhere WAY, WAY, beyond my budget! The clear choice came down to the 20D and the D70 and I was leaning strongly toward the D70 because of the better Kit lense. Given this combo is a couple hundred less than the Canon, It's probably what I'll end up choosing. That being said, right now I'm litterally begging a fellow amature astronomer I stumbled accross who has a lightlyused D2H for sale, to work outeitheratrade for astronomy eqipment or some sort ofpayment plan with me forhis camera.That would be a fantastic score for me If he'll do it, he really wants cash, but said he'd think about it.
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Old Oct 12, 2006, 3:08 PM   #16
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Although the D2H must be a lot of fun to handle, I think you'd be just as happy if not happier with the D70s...

For the simple reason that it's been a while since the D2H came out. With 4 MP A4 is about your limit to print, print bigger and you'll see a decrease in quality.
I'm usually not a "pixel peeper", but personally I wouldn't settle for 4 MP anymore, especially if it's going to cost me a serious buck.

I know a few people that are in to photography for a living, and they are happy using the D70s.

It's also less intimidating to point at people...

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Old Oct 12, 2006, 3:36 PM   #17
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I agree, the D70s is a great camera. (Very impressed by all the reviews and test shots of it)

I handled one and found it solid feeling, have a nice grip, great TTL viewfinder/focus points, good quality LCD, and heavy. (Which is a good thing in my book)

The 18 - 70 mm kit lens that comes with it looks great, and performs great as well. (According to various reviews)

It might be my next camera.

From my personal research; the Nikon D70s have one of the best high ISO performance around. At ISO 1600, it's images are stillcrisp, well defined, and detailed. Noises are also mono-chromic with very minimal N.R.. (It doesn't seems to use N.R. to cut off the noises to remove theimage details)

The lighterA.A. filter of the D70s' CCD produces more crisp images at the expense of moire.

I forgotto mention that the converted RAWphotos captured bythe Nikon D70s are really crisp and detailed. (Someone still need to show me another dSLRthat can do it ) [Just to say that the image quality of the D70s are really good, especially the RAWqualityisexceptional...]

EDIT:


Where I got all this informations from??? "Reviews".

Want specific links? Unless you ask for them. Because they are going to be a lotthat will be necessary for me to present. (I am prepared for it all though...)







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Old Oct 12, 2006, 4:40 PM   #18
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TDN wrote:
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Although the D2H must be a lot of fun to handle, I think you'd be just as happy if not happier with the D70s...

For the simple reason that it's been a while since the D2H came out. With 4 MP A4 is about your limit to print, print bigger and you'll see a decrease in quality.
I'm usually not a "pixel peeper", but personally I wouldn't settle for 4 MP anymore, especially if it's going to cost me a serious buck.

I know a few people that are in to photography for a living, and they are happy using the D70s.

It's also less intimidating to point at people...

TDN
A4...? Not sure I understand the reference, I kind of understand how pixel count and pixel size, work together to affect resolution, and how it's degraded by NR, but still don't understand the details of how things are tallied up with various sensor firmwaresuch as CMOS vs.... whatever. but are you saying that because of the higher pixel count, the midrange D70 compensates or is at least comparable in image quality to a much faster, high-end,pro-camera like the D2H for outdoor and event imaging? Interesting....
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Old Oct 12, 2006, 4:59 PM   #19
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BenjaminXYZ wrote:
Quote:
I agree, the D70s is a great camera. (Very impressed by all the reviews and test shots of it)

I handled one and found it solid feeling, have a nice grip, great TTL viewfinder/focus points, good quality LCD, and heavy. (Which is a good thing in my book)

The 18 - 70 mm kit lens that comes with it looks great, and performs great as well. (According to various reviews)

It might be my next camera.

From my personal research; the Nikon D70s have one of the best high ISO performance around. At ISO 1600, it's images are stillcrisp, well defined, and detailed. Noises are also mono-chromic with very minimal N.R.. (It doesn't seems to use N.R. to cut off the noises to remove theimage details)

The lighterA.A. filter of the D70s' CCD produces more crisp images at the expense of moire.

I forgotto mention that the converted RAWphotos captured bythe Nikon D70s are really crisp and detailed. (Someone still need to show me another dSLRthat can do it ) [Just to say that the image quality of the D70s are really good, especially the RAWqualityisexceptional...]

EDIT:


Where I got all this informations from??? "Reviews".

Want specific links? Unless you ask for them. Because they are going to be a lotthat will be necessary for me to present. (I am prepared for it all though...)







Wow! You lost me back there, "A.A. filter produces more crisp images at the expense of Moire" but given the tone of the post, I'll tally it as a definate vote for the D70, if he ever gets back with me to negotiate a swap.

As I re-read this thread however, the one thing that jumps out at me from the coversation both recent and 18 months ago, is the camera is only half the package, I'll have to getthe camerafirst, because I can use a great camera with amediocrelense, but I can't use a fantastic lense, with no camera. I'll just have to be sure not to over-extend myself buying the camera, remembering it's only half the package.
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Old Oct 12, 2006, 5:08 PM   #20
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Well, of course the D2H was designed for the best performance back then, and there's probably gone a lot of thought and effort in one of those cameras, but we are almost 3,5 years further in time now, and a lot has happened since then.

I am not saying the D2H is degraded to a "bad camera" over the years , I am saying that for a lot less money, you can get something that will suit your needs today just as well.

By A4, I was referring to the paper size, as I'm not good with inches...
it is about the limit to print with 4 MP, at least for me...

But hey, don't let me influence you too much. If you have your heart set on the D2H, by all means go ahead. It must be a dream to shoot with.
But personally, I'd rather invest the extra cash in some glass.

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