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View Poll Results: Please vote for suggestion
KM Maxxum 5D 9 52.94%
Canon Digital Rebel XT/350D 4 23.53%
Olympus E-500 Evolt 4 23.53%
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Old Jan 10, 2006, 10:45 AM   #1
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I am trying to select my 1st digital slr. I don't have money to waste, so I want a camera I will be happy with for many years to come. I have narrowed down to these choices:

KM Maxxum 5D (only 6 mp but I like the anti-shake feature)

Canon Digital Rebel XT/350D (nice features & small size, but pricey)

Olympus E-500 Evolt (8 mp, dust system, nice 2 lens package)


My kids are involved in many activities that require taking photos from 40' or more, and often in poor lighting conditions.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.




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Old Jan 11, 2006, 11:07 AM   #2
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well there's several choises, the konica minolta got good reviews, but in consumer reports reliability is not as good as the canon. Olympus has some sketchy tech support, my friend had a camera from them he went through hell n back to get a replacement. The rebel xt is nice, they got good support not as many features as the konica but its compact. Since sept 11 u carry a big camera you magically become suspiction, the build of the xt is not as nice as the other ones but a lotta ppl got canons so theres a good chance u can borrow one from a friend. Can I sugest the nikon D50 is the cheapest of the bunch 6.1 mp can handle noise up to 1600iso better than the canon or the olympus and theres a deal on it. For 850$ with a promo code u get the 2 lens kit, or for bout $700 u get the basic lens kit, with a free printer. The konica is sweet but the canon is fast and is 8.2mp isntead of 6 so it all depends on ur style.:|
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Old Jan 11, 2006, 2:42 PM   #3
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JbradleyA wrote:
Quote:
I am trying to select my 1st digital slr. I don't have money to waste, so I want a camera I will be happy with for many years to come. I have narrowed down to these choices:


My kids are involved in many activities that require taking photos from 40' or more, and often in poor lighting conditions.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.
I can't tell from your post how much research you've done into SLRs so I apologize ahead of time if you already know this. That being said, here we go:

The camera body is only the first part of the equation - and in the end it will be the LEAST EXPENSIVE part. The real cost in getting into SLRs is THE LENS collection. Now, I'm not sure what you're kids activities are - you need to be more specific about that. But, on the assumption that it's indoor sports. If that's the case, then you need a better lens than any of the above is going to come with as a 'kit lens'. You will likely need a lens with a maximum aperture of f2.0 or better - which means a prime lens. Anti shake capability won't help a bit when it comes to stopping action - you need fast shutter speeds - period. Now, saying you are 40' or more from the action really adds difficulty. Speaking purely from a Canon standpoint, the two cheapest indoor sports lens options are the 50mm 1.8 ($70) and 85mm 1.8 ($330) - the 50mm is really only useful if you're right up on the action - say at the baseline in basketball or at the net in volleyball. The 85mm is a better option but at 40' away you're not going to get those great up-close shots and trust me: when you heavily crop a photo taken in low light / high ISO situations the result isn't great. So, bottom line - if it's indoor sports like volleyball or basketball or wrestling - you're going to need to be on the floor to get good results.

If you are talking about other activities - plays and such where there isn't the fast action, or if you were in a college level arena you can get away with f2.8 or even f4.0 - which means you can use something like a 70-200 2.8 lens (Canon = $1100 or Sigma which makes for all of your camera choices I believe has a 70-200 2.8 for around $800). So, bottom line is: if your reason for buying an SLR is to shoot indoors in school gyms or concert halls, you are going to have to pay some $$ for your lens or change your location relative to 'the action'. Don't mean to scare you off - but I'd hate to see you spend $1000 on a new camera and accessories and THEN find out you need to spend hundreds more to take good pictures of your children playing indoor sports.

Now, if you have other uses for the camera and indoor sports is only a minor use then that's a different story. Or, if you were shooting outoor sports it would be a different story - you can get some relatively inexpensive ($300-$500) lenses that will allow you to shoot outdoor sports and get very decent results.

If I haven't scared you off yet, the next step is to look at the cost of lenses for the system you want to buy into. I promise you, you will buy more than one lens eventually. One of the reasons Canon and Nikon have such a big following is the selection of lenses that are available for their cameras and the quality of those lenses. But, that asside, I would suggest either the Canon or the KM from your list - I think the Olympus really lags behind the other two.
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Old Jan 11, 2006, 6:10 PM   #4
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I have an *ist DS (Pentax). I am happy with it. However, if I were going to buy my first DSLR today, I would get the KM 5D.

It's relatively cheap.

It's built sturdily.

It does pretty well at high ISO's.

I has the anti-shake system built into the camera.

I agree with some of the others that lenses are the biggest cost for many DSLR owners. However, maybe I am happier with less sterling quality photos that they are. I am pretty happy with the results I get for lenses that cost less than 200 bucks. Because of this, I would get the kits lens, and then maybe an 18-200 or 28-300 zoom lens for less than 300 bucks. Check the review for the 5D.

The Canon takes great pictures, I agree. The Olympus takes very good pictures in good lighting. It's not so good in low light due to its smaller sensor.
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Old Jan 11, 2006, 6:10 PM   #5
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I have an *ist DS (Pentax). I am happy with it. However, if I were going to buy my first DSLR today, I would get the KM 5D.

It's relatively cheap.

It's built sturdily.

It does pretty well at high ISO's.

I has the anti-shake system built into the camera.

I agree with some of the others that lenses are the biggest cost for many DSLR owners. However, maybe I am happier with less sterling quality photos that they are. I am pretty happy with the results I get for lenses that cost less than 200 bucks. Because of this, I would get the kits lens, and then maybe an 18-200 or 28-300 zoom lens for less than 300 bucks. Check the review for the 5D.

The Canon takes great pictures, I agree. The Olympus takes very good pictures in good lighting. It's not so good in low light due to its smaller sensor.
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Old Jan 11, 2006, 6:28 PM   #6
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KM 5D is a nice intro DSLR. Inexpensive, nice ergonomics, anti-shake is good for low light. 2nd hand lenses are plenty and inexpensive.

Digital Rebel has 8mp CMOS sensor (same as the more expensive 20D). Very good photo quaity. Very good low light characteristics. Pricier. Not as good ergonomics as the 5D.

Evolt E-500. Low price, nice lenses. Not as good in low light, due to smaller 4/3's sensor size. Additional lenses are expensive.

If your taking shots 40 feet or more away, in low light, you'll need an external flash. Sunpak 383 is a nice flash for around $60.

I'd say if you have budget constraints, look at the KM 5D. If you're less budget constrained, or think you might trade up toa higher end camera one day, the Rebel XT.

-- Terry




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Old Jan 11, 2006, 6:46 PM   #7
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I would have to vote for the KM 5D, especially since I just got one! It is a fantastic camera for the money. I got the camera and kit lens for $620 online, and found a second hand 70-210 f/4 (great lens - especially for sports) for $110 in a camera shop in town (these lenses aren't too hard to find). These two lenses will cover 90% of the shots I'll ever take for a while. The only other lens I want is a 50mm f/1.7 prime, which the shop has several good used ones for $30, so it's a cheap lens to acquire. This much capability for so little money is hard to beat. And the anti-shake is just too nice in a camera this price. The canon is great but I didn't like the feel of the grip. I liked theNikon D50, but the KM justfelt the best to me. The 6 vs. 8 mp is no big deal, it's the difference of a camera that will print great 10x15s or one that will do 12x17s. I can crop the heck out of shots and get great 8x10s, so 6mp gives you lots of room to play with.
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Old Jan 13, 2006, 6:49 PM   #8
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Is it me or are all these ppl owners of konica minoltas? The Konica is a fine machine but unless u got a big lens over 250mm then u don't need the antishake because the camera should be fast enough to capture the immage. get urslef a nice rebel xt or a nikon d5, or a nice pentax
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Old Jan 14, 2006, 2:00 AM   #9
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Nope, Terry has a Canon 20D and so do I.

But for me the best camera until you get to that level is the KM5D.

My pick of the DSLRs:

Entry Level: KM5D

Semi-Pro: Canon 20D / Nikon D200

Pro: All are good, take your pick between Canon 1D(s), 5D, Nikon D2X.
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Old Jan 14, 2006, 10:21 AM   #10
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I was looking into a rebel xt, I am at intermediate level but I want something I can grow with an not outgrow it fast since It's one of those in a lifetime things, money's tight. I could prob get an Xt kit, or an body kit then get 2 lens. My boss is also getting an canon dslr so i could prob borrow some of his lens. I have read some photography books, And I will prob take some lessons. :|
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