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Old Jul 27, 2006, 3:56 PM   #1
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I am in the market for a new DSLR (I currently have the Canon D300 digital rebel).* To me, the main experience of using an SLR is the viewfinder and in researching everything on the market, I will see comments like "the viewfinder is smaller and dimmer than one would expect".* So, which dSLR camera in the sub $1500 category has the best viewfinder??Thanks.roger
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Old Jul 27, 2006, 4:04 PM   #2
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From what I have heard, Pentax are real good.
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Old Jul 27, 2006, 4:06 PM   #3
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The Pentax DS is rated as the best and the new Pentax K100D just being released is said to be even better.

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Old Jul 27, 2006, 4:09 PM   #4
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Under $1,500, huh?

Konica Minolta Maxxum 7D (a steal at only $724 from Wal-Mart while supplies last). See the listing here (but, don't expect them to last for much longer). Grab the extended warranty and they'll reimburse you fulll purchase price later if it breaks for reasons outside of your control and can't be repaired).

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/produ...uct_id=4898002

Canon EOS-30D (and also the EOS-20D)

Pentax *st DS2


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Old Jul 27, 2006, 9:46 PM   #5
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JimC-

I really appreciate your expert input and finesse. However, because art is indeed in the eye of the beholder. I must suggest that at least for me, the optical (pentaprism) viewfinders of the KM 7D and the DS are just about equal!

But now we have to also consider the new Pentax K100D, what do you think? I have heard that it is even better than the DS and the KM 7D?

MT
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Old Jul 27, 2006, 10:07 PM   #6
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I believe the K100D has the pentamirror... similar to the DL, although I've heard the DL's pentamirror is still better than many of the other cameras out there, some people say they actually prefer its viewfinder over the DS2. I think the DS2 is generally said to be better though. The K100D has better jpgs and autofocus the other Pentax cameras, or so I have heard. The only experiance I've had is with the DL.
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Old Jul 28, 2006, 8:41 AM   #7
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mtclimber wrote:
Quote:
JimC-

I really appreciate your expert input and finesse. However, because art is indeed in the eye of the beholder. I must suggest that at least for me, the optical (pentaprism) viewfinders of the KM 7D and the DS are just about equal!

But now we have to also consider the new Pentax K100D, what do you think? I have heard that it is even better than the DS and the KM 7D?

MT
That wasn't meant to be in any particular order. The Pentax is probably a bit better than the others.

But, none of the viewfinders in DSLR models using APS-C size sensors are really as good as many film cameras with larger surface areas for the viewfinder, and split image type focus screens.

If I were doing a lot of manual focus, I'd probably replace the screen in the viewfinder, no matter what model I went with (if the screen were replaceable). In addition to camera manufacturer screens, there are some third party screens available for some models, too.

Someone on another forum put together a chart a while back with lots of viewfinder specs (surface area, pentamirror or pentaprism, magnification, coverage area percentage, eye relief etc.). But, I haven't been able to locate it.

But, specs alone don't really tell you how good a viewfinder is. You really need to test the models you're interested in, especially if you wear eyeglasses or want to use manual focus much, as you'll probably have a preference for one versus another.


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Old Jul 28, 2006, 12:17 PM   #8
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Thank a lot Jim-

I think that you have reallyvoiced (at least in my opinion, for what that is worth) the key elements in viewfinder selection.

(1) It is a matter of personal choice.

(2) It matters if you wear eyeglasses or not.

(3) It matters if you are doing a lot of manual focusing

(4) How the focusing screen is marked and how focus achievement is displayed on that focusing screen,also plays in to the selection process.

So, we most probably, cannot emphasize enough,the need, of the camera buyers to physically handle, and to actually test as much as possible, the cameras that they are seriously considering.

MT

MT
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Old Aug 1, 2006, 9:38 AM   #9
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I have been searching for the best viewfinder in a DLSR for about 6 months. I have been wearing eyeglasses for about 50 years-so the viewfinder was the most important factor. Have been using an Olympus C8080 with EVF for about 2 years-couldn't stand it anymore. Price was also a factor-tried to stay under $1000.00.

Models that I tried-Olympus E500-Rebel XT-Nikon D50-Nikon D70s-Sony R1-Olympus E330. I bought a Pentax *istDS online for under $500 with the kit lens-a truly great viefinder-bright, clear, with a 95% FOV. The closest competitor was the D70s which has a very good viewfinder-couldn't justify double the price-but I'm sure the Nikon lens is superior. Only gripe on the *ist DS is the flimsy battery cover-will live with that for all the other benefits.
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