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Old Sep 15, 2005, 4:37 PM   #1
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I want to buy my dad a camera that can take great natural pictures like the Olympus 7070/8080. He will be mostly using it as a Point and Shoot camera and leave the setting in Auto most of the time. Which entry level DSLR camera will be good for him. Or should I just get him the C8080/C7070 - can I do better than the C8080 for $600~$700 including lenses.
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Old Sep 15, 2005, 4:58 PM   #2
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Cuthein-

Your budget would be maxed out trying to find a dSLR at that price. Why not consider a nice Olympus C-7070 or a C-8080 and he would have a great set-up.

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Old Sep 15, 2005, 5:53 PM   #3
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I want something better for my dad as he loves taking pictures. I am kind of leaning toward the Pentax istDS - I dont mind streching my budget a little bit for my dear old dad.
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Old Sep 15, 2005, 5:57 PM   #4
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E-300, $770 with 2 lens, $636 with 1 lens kit. Has full auto and scene selection mode.
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Old Sep 15, 2005, 6:21 PM   #5
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i would prefer the pentax ds, nikon d50, or even the older canon digital rebel over the oly e-300... the sensor on the oly is too small and thus isnoisy at higher ISO's, plus the system is just not as well supported as the major brands..
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Old Sep 15, 2005, 7:28 PM   #6
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I guess it all depends ... why would you consider it "too small" or too noisy - really?

Anyways, considering the OP's requirement of Point and Shoot, I'd wager that no further lens would be gotten (since 7070/8080 made it to the list). In which case the E-300 kit lens is better than XT or D50's offering, so you might as well start offwith the best setup. As for support, again you have to define "just not as well supported as the major brands". Customer serivice across the board are quite good.

D50 2 lens kit is $999 iirc, I like the out of camera JPG colors better than XT. XT with EF-S 18-55mm is ~$860. Best bang for the buck really depends on personal preference.


The 7070, at about $370 shipped these days has to be one of the best deals around imo. You'll have to deal with the slow AF and the likes, as with any other digicams though (compared with dSLR).

What kind of pictures would your dad be taking most of the time?

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Old Sep 15, 2005, 9:02 PM   #7
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Reading carefully your desire to buy your dad a DSLR with less than a thousand to spend is difficult but not impossible. When we talk about a DSLR or even 35mm SLR, it's the whole system to add up the real final cost such as lenses, flash, filters if any for each lens...

You indicated that your father loves taking pictures, I assume he hadsome kind ofold time manual 35mm SLR like the legendary Nikon FM2, or the Canon F1, or an advanced amateur Canon A1... and for some reason he start to semi retired his hobby, you want to keep his passion alive by introducinghim to this day new technology of digital camera. If you know any of his camera maker he has used then go for that brand name. I understand that it may not be the best for him but mature photographers like him tend to go for the same maker to remember their wonderful yesteryears. If he doesn't have any 35mm SLR system, just a casual point and shoot then you can start fresh for him.

You zero in on the Pentax IstDS, you are in the right direction but I don't know how far you will go from here. I've seen the Pentax through the viewfinder myself, I am very surprised to seehow bright it is, I beleive it helps your dad weak vision at his age.

I am considering my next camera, it could be the Fuji S9000 but because the price is very close to the Pentax IstDS, Idon't knowwhich one to pick yet. If I choose the Pentax it's the bright viewfinder that I need the most for my shooting style, move fast shoot fast shoot wide open. However, the minus point about the Pentax is the ISO sensitive start at 200 up along with the flash sync at only 1/180 sec, these numbers don't match for my needs, I need ISO 100 badly in any camera I want to buy. Your dad as a casual photographer, I think he can tolerate shooting at ISO 200.



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Old Sep 15, 2005, 11:55 PM   #8
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Why make a old man lug a 3lb metal box around, squint ata view finder, and have all that crap accerssories to keep in order.

I think you have a misconception the bigger the better. If you just want P&S, semi-compact camera picture quality can rival that of a big camera in most cases. Especially you said you just want good natural photos. For example, check steve's review and sample pictures of Fuji F10 and compare it to Pentax *istDS. You will be quite suprised how little difference there is in terms of P&S picture quality.

If I were you I would at least get a compact camera for him, then I'll look into a zoom camera that has excellent ergonomics. Remember the more you carry your camera with you the more likely you will take photos, no one's gonna sleep and eat with a dSLR around his neck.


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Old Sep 16, 2005, 9:39 AM   #9
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I would suggest the istDS because it is amazing how little noise there is at higher ISO settings, has the best viewfinder by far of any of the low end DSLR's and the ISO 200 setting is as noise free as the 100 ISO setting on any other DSLR (Rebel XT)I have used lately.

The istDS can be purchased for $659 with the kit zoom lens and unlike ALL other DSLR's can use all Pentax lenses back to the screw mount lenses and still be able to use the internal meter.

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Old Sep 16, 2005, 11:16 AM   #10
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Thank you all for the suggestion. Decision, decision... After thinking about it more and more, a point and shoot camera would probablysuit him better. He is 70, and lugging around a big bag with full of lenses and heavy camera may not be a good idea.

Back to the drawing board, I know for fact that Olympus 7070 is a great camera as my brother has it. The images is so natural looking without having to do any post processing. What other point and shoot cameracan match the ability of taking beautiful natural lookingi looking pictures that come out asgoodas the 7070. Long zoom, short zoom, wide zoom is not a concern as my dad is just a casual picture takers whom mostly taking pictures around the house, and friends, family members, etc.... Though he occasionally like to shoot birds, etc.... and likes to print large pictures of 8x10 size ......
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