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Old Jun 3, 2005, 12:04 PM   #1
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For an amateur interested in shooting family shots of children - their horses - on holidays at the beach etc and with most prints limited in size to 6 x 4 inch - would there be any visible difference to a professional analyst viewing the resultant pictures?
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Old Jun 3, 2005, 12:39 PM   #2
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In good light, a non-DSLR model like the Pro1 would probably be fine for most users.

Yes, you may be able to see a difference, depending on what you're looking for.

Because the sensors used in a model like the Pro1 are much smaller than the sensors used a DSLR model, you can use a much shorter focal length lens on a non-DSLR model for any given 35mm equivalent focal length/angle of view.

Since Depth of Field is based on the actual (versus 35mm equivalent) focal length of the lens (with aperture and focus distance being the other determining factors for Depth of field), you have much greater Depth of Field with a model like the Pro1.

This makes it difficult to make subjects stand out from distracting backgrounds with a non-DSLR model by shooting at larger apertures (since Depth of Field is still pretty good, even using wide open aperture settings).

In some conditions, this greater depth of field can be a good thing. In other conditions (for example, portraits, etc.) the greater depth of field can be a bad thing. Of course, you can use an editor to simulate a shallow depth of field by blurring the background using gaussian blur, etc. if you buy a non-DSLR model like the Pro1.

Startup Time, Focus Speed, Cycle Times between photos, etc. are going to be much faster on the DSLR models. For sports use, low light use, etc., you won't be able to get as many keepers using a non-DSLR camera. They focus slower, and an EVF (Electronic Viewfinder) can be harder to use in low light,causing a momentary delay between real time, making it harder to track moving subjects. Manual Focus is also much more difficult with a non-DSLR model.

Noise tends to be quite high at anything much above the lowest ISO speed settings with the non-DSLR models. So, this can limit their usability in some lighting conditions. For example, if you wanted to take photos indoors without a flash, you'd want to go with a DSLR. DSLRmodels can shoot at much higher ISO speeds with lower noise, thanks to their larger sensors, which have larger photosites for each pixel. Higher available ISO speeds allows faster shutter speeds to help reduce motion blur. But, you would need to make sure your lenses are up to the task, too (buying a brighter lens for low light use).

From comparisons I've seen, the Digital Rebel XT noise level at ISO 1600, is about where the Canon Pro1 is at ISO 200. So, given a lens with the same brightness/aperture settings, you'd be able to shoot at shutter speeds around 8 times as fast with the Rebel XT with similar noise levels.

At smaller print sizes, the noise is probably not going to bevery noticeable. But, given the ISO speed limitations of the Pro1 (max ISO 400, which is going to be noisy), motion blur could be a problem in many lighting conditions. Most DSLR models excel in low light, whereas non-DSLR models tend to become unusable for taking photos of moving subjects in many lighting conditions without a flash.

I'll move this thread to our What Camera Should I Buy forum, where you may get more responses on pros and cons of both camera types.


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Old Jun 3, 2005, 1:29 PM   #3
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In my opinion, I think the P & S also get prtty obselete fairly quickly (and prices drop really quickly). That can be true for the dSLRS when another model replaces it but I've noted that almost any SLR can take a very good pictures. If the Pro1 was replaced by say, Pro2, there's probably going to be some HUGE HUGE improvement (IE gets a lot better at taking movies/ indoor shots). The main reason I choose the XT over the Pro1 was because of shear speed.

Sometimes I miss ther huge Depth of Field in P&S, but its usually not a problem. (That is probably the most obvious thing for a pro to say its not an SLR). The 3 things I really miss about the P&S ARE the movies, aiming your shot with the LCD, and fliping out the lcd, itself.

Another thing to note is price. The XT will be a lot more expensive when you want to buy a good lens and accessories. Most of the decent lenses cost the same as some P&S cameras.:shock:

NOT only that, but if you wanted to make more use from an dSLR you'll have to study a lot about camera settings, which may not be convient if all you wanted to do was take a picture. You can set the XT like a P&S, but it has a lot more potential than that

And one last thing is that the picture dimensions in the XT is 4 x 6, you won't be cropping like you would for a P&S camera, with their picture dimension in 3 x 4, regular comuter format.
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Old Jun 3, 2005, 1:34 PM   #4
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For outside shots, any decent p&s should be good enough for 4x6, 5x7 or even 8x10 shots. I got good results with my old 2MP panasonic FZ1 at 8x10. Now for horse shots where they moving, you might want something which lets you shoot in continuous mode with fast FPS.

For inside shots, most p&s fail as you need low light lenses and/or higher usuable ISOs. That's where dSLRs shine but you can definitely use a p&s but get an external flash.

BTW - What makes you decide about Pro1. Don't go for mega pixels. Any 4/5 is good enough for family shots.

I started with FZ1 and then moved to 10D. Now I am thinking about FZ5 as a carry along camera as I love big zooms.


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Old Jun 3, 2005, 2:48 PM   #5
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Many thanks for your various inputs and suggestions.

I already own a Pro1 and my wife a Fuji FinePix 4700 but I am considering the purchase of a Rebel XT or Canon 20D and this is what lies behind my original question.

When I look back on the pictures from my brothers Leica SLR camera taken years ago on film, - with no after processing - flesh tones on people and clarity generally - I am opined the Pro1 is not comparable.

However, most of my 'snaps' are 6 x 4" prints though I do print up to 10 x 8". I am attempting to assess whether I would obtain any identifiable benefit by acquiring the XT or 20D - I appreciate I shall have to add to the standard lens kit which comes with each model.

All that said I am not a professional photographer - I just enjoy keeping up to date with with family photos - their sports activities, which range from horse riding to golf and swimming etc.




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Old Jun 3, 2005, 2:59 PM   #6
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Did you check out the Pentax *ist D yet? It's supposed to be better than the Xt (per Cnet) and it's much smaller and all-metal....check it out!

And the pictures I have seen on pbase.com are Stunning!
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Old Jun 3, 2005, 3:49 PM   #7
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Kidson wrote:
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For an amateur interested in shooting family shots of children - their horses - on holidays at the beach etc and with most prints limited in size to 6 x 4 inch - would there be any visible difference to a professional analyst viewing the resultant pictures?

For shooting these subjects the great advantage of a DSLR is speed. I used to shoot with a Minolta A200 (very similar to the Pro1)... And the shutter lag, shot-to-shot recycle time, and autofocus delaycaused me to miss many shots of moving subjects. Very frustrating when you press the shutter at the exact candid moment and your camera takes the picture almost a second later. With the Rebel XT (and just about any other DSLR), the shutter lag and delay beween shots is virtually non-existent. Yery useful for candid photos of kids and horses.



However, as someone already mentioned, the shallow depth-of-field ofDSLRs takes some practice to get the hang of. You can increase the depth of field, obviously, but itisn't as "easy" to getgood results. But once you learn, the results will be the best possible.Good luck.
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Old Jun 3, 2005, 5:07 PM   #8
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Kidson wrote:
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When I look back on the pictures from my brothers Leica SLR camera taken years ago on film, - with no after processing - flesh tones on people and clarity generally - I am opined the Pro1 is not comparable.

How do you know it is the camera and not the person using the camera? Please don't take it bad way. You can't judge cameras by looking at pictures taken by 2 people.
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Old Jun 4, 2005, 1:35 AM   #9
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Kidson wrote:
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When I look back on the pictures from my brothers Leica SLR camera taken years ago on film, - with no after processing - flesh tones on people and clarity generally - I am opined the Pro1 is not comparable.

That's because Leica cameras are excellent, and just because something is digital it shouldn't be assumed that it will take better photos than a good film camera with a first class lens. Digital has it's strong points, mainly for the ease of post-processing while still producing very good images ... but film certainly still has some advantages IMO.

One note though, using film thereare always corrections that are made during processing just like with digital. Even the lab that you send your film to to get prints corrects for exposure and colorin a similar way that digital prints are processed. I do my own B&W darkroom work and need to compensate forexposure and contrast ... plus to make a really good print you have to dodge, burn, etc, just like in Photoshop.Pro'sand advanced amatures evenexpose prints using unsharp mask,a film techniquecreated long beforedigital photographyexisted.

Don't think from the above that I'm a film guyputting downdigital. It's true that I still prefer the results from film than my 20D, but I get much, muchmore enjoyment fromshooting indigital. Plus I'm sold on the fact that digital will improve while film stays the same, so any advantage film may have will probably be gone by the time I'm ready to upgrade to a new model ... and when that happens I'll donate my Beseler 23C enlarger to a museum :lol:.



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Old Jun 4, 2005, 3:28 AM   #10
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Id make my decision on the ability to change lens... Think about how far you want to get into photography and if your going to need more zoom, a good wide angle, or 1-1 macros. If yes, buy the 350d.
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