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Digital SLR Recommendations

 
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Uisce Beatha
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Digital SLR Recommendations
« on: February 14, 2007, 08:44:36 AM »

Semi-serious hobbiest looking for best value in a digital SLR.  Definitely want to stay under $1K and would be overjoyed to stay under $750.  Always been fond of Canon optics and will be taking a look at the EOS 20D ($699 body).

Any recommendations?
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Clive
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Re: Digital SLR Recommendations
« Reply #1 on: February 14, 2007, 08:58:55 AM »

I picked up the Rebel XT a few months back.  (In fact, it's right here on my desk -- I just used it take shots of some labels for a submission.)  It replaced a Rebel 2000 35mm.

I like it a lot so far.  There really isn't anything I've wanted to do that the camera couldn't.  I have used a 28-105 USM lens on it since I got it, not the kit lens.

Photo.net seems to shoot straight.  Here's their Head-to-head review of the 20D and Rebel XT.

Quote
It looks very much like the image quality of the Canon Rebel XT is up to that of the EOS 20D. It's also evident from using the Rebel XT, that it's a Rebel, i.e. a camera aimed at the consumer entry level, while the Canon 20D is clearly aimed at the more experienced and serious photographer. Ultimately in many respects the cameras will be capable of yielding almost identical results, it's just that doing it with the 20D will be a little easier. Of course there are some things the Rebel XT doesn't do as well. It has a slower frame rate, a smaller JPEG image buffer, a lower capacity battery, the AF system is different and, as mentioned, the viewfinder is smaller. However for many people saving $400-$500 will make up for all those things. Personally, I'd buy the 20D, but that's just me. Many people will buy the Canon Digital Rebel XT and be very happy with it. Given the image quality and sensor resolution and long with the low price, I'd say that it's currently the best performing camera in the "entry level" digital SLR group and I can certainly fully recommend it.
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Uisce Beatha
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Re: Digital SLR Recommendations
« Reply #2 on: February 14, 2007, 09:03:12 AM »

Thanks Clive.  That's exactly the sort of info I'm looking for.  I had the 20D pricing wrong.  $699 is Amazon used which I'd never do.  It's out of my budget at new prices.

I'll head over to photo.net and dig deep.  Your recommendation goes a long way.  I know how you "are about things".   Wink
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stegerman
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Re: Digital SLR Recommendations
« Reply #3 on: February 14, 2007, 11:06:49 AM »

My wife bought an Canon EOS  Rebel last year. She loves it and is very picky when it comes to cameras.
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wishbone
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Re: Digital SLR Recommendations
« Reply #4 on: February 14, 2007, 11:46:24 AM »

I've got a Nikon D70 I've had for a couple of years and have been very pleased with it.  Canon has strong offerings as well, the Nikon just fit my hand better than the Canon.

The one thing to remember is that you are buying into a lens system as much, if not more, than a camera body.  I think Canon and Nikon both have strong offerings, and both are easily available.

One feature neither Nikon or Canon offer is built in image stabilization.  While not as effective as in camera IS, it is close, and turns every lens into an IS lens as opposed to having to pay the premium on each lens.  IS does not stop motion blur, so if you are a sports shooter it is of limited value, but does provide a lot of help for less than steady hands.  Of the camera's that offer in body IS, I would look at Pentax first, I think it is the K100.

Here's a couple of links that do excellent reviews.

http://www.dpreview.com
http://www.imaging-resource.com

Good luck
ww
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Uisce Beatha
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Re: Digital SLR Recommendations
« Reply #5 on: February 14, 2007, 12:19:22 PM »

Thanks for all the input fellas.

Wishbone, I just stopped by our local photo shop at lunch and the manager was directing me, initially, toward the D80.  One of the first points he made was the ergonomics of holding the camera.  The D80 is sweet in that regard.

Then we spent 20 minutes on image stabilization.  This is when he brought out the K100.  A few demos later and I see what a difference it makes. 

It really surprised me to read your post.  It was like a summary of my visit to the store.   Wink
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TFT
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Re: Digital SLR Recommendations
« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2007, 04:13:52 PM »


It really surprised me to read your post.  It was like a summary of my visit to the store.   Wink

With a Happy Ending.

 Cool

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wishbone
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Re: Digital SLR Recommendations
« Reply #7 on: February 14, 2007, 06:05:03 PM »

I shop in the wrong camera stores, I never get a Happy Ending when I visit
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wishbone
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Re: Digital SLR Recommendations
« Reply #8 on: February 14, 2007, 06:07:36 PM »

The image stabilization is nice, wish I could afford lenses with it.

One of the other nice feature of Pentax is the mount has been around a long time, so while new glass isn't always as readily available as Canon and Nikon, Ebay and KEH generally have some very nice used lens pretty cheap.
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Clive
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Re: Digital SLR Recommendations
« Reply #9 on: February 14, 2007, 09:11:23 PM »

The image stabilization is nice, wish I could afford lenses with it.
I'm no Canon shill, but I've never had an issue with camera shake (with ANY camera).  Maybe if I had a telephoto and was taking nature or sports shots ... but then I'd have the camera on a tripod or rest of some sort.

Quote
One of the other nice feature of Pentax is the mount has been around a long time, so while new glass isn't always as readily available as Canon and Nikon, Ebay and KEH generally have some very nice used lens pretty cheap.
Not sure, but I think all three major brands have been pretty stable in their mounts.  I have a Canon lens that fits both 35mm and dSLR bodies.  I also have a couple of ancient but really good Nikkor lenses from an equally ancient Nikkor 35mm, and those lenses mount on the Nikon dSLR my dad got this past spring.

Granted, the Canon EF lenses focus to a 35mm target, whereas their EFS lenses focus on the smaller CMOS chip surface (1.6x factor).  But the mounts are the same.  (I can't say whether the Nikon or Pentax 35mm lenses work exactly the same with their respective dSLR counterparts.)
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wishbone
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Re: Digital SLR Recommendations
« Reply #10 on: February 15, 2007, 05:05:47 AM »

Both Nikon and Pentax have a 1.5 crop factor, Canon has a 1.6.  Which means a 50mm lens acts like a 75mm on Nikon and Pentax, 80mm on Canon.  Good for the long end, not great for wide.

To be honest, they are all excellent camera's.
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Uisce Beatha
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Re: Digital SLR Recommendations
« Reply #11 on: February 15, 2007, 07:11:49 AM »

I've been on major research mode for the past 24 hours.  I have to say that all three brands seem to recommend themselves - often in different ways.  I don't think you can go wrong. 
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"If you're darker than a caramel, Reverend Al speaks for you." - Aasif Mandvi
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Clive
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Re: Digital SLR Recommendations
« Reply #12 on: February 15, 2007, 07:21:09 AM »

Yup.

There's also no substitute for hands-on trial.  I have fairly large hands, and a couple folks warned me that the Rebel XT would feel too small and that I'd have trouble working its controls.  (One smaller guy, who had the XT and moved up to the 20DA (he takes a LOT of astronomy shots) was really lobbying hard for the 20D.)  Luckily, the other guy had a Rebel and I was able to try it out.

Anyway, also give thought to your primary uses.  Maybe weight is a consideration; or quickly changing ISO setting; or switching from auto- to manual focus; or changing aperture or shutter speed.  Whatever, make sure the controls you'll use most often can be done easily -- and, even better, without looking.

[spelling]
« Last Edit: February 15, 2007, 09:07:12 AM by Clive » Logged Return to Top
stegerman
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Re: Digital SLR Recommendations
« Reply #13 on: February 15, 2007, 09:04:51 AM »



 Grin Grin
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Uisce Beatha
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Re: Digital SLR Recommendations
« Reply #14 on: February 15, 2007, 09:23:24 AM »

 Cheesy

You've got karma. 
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"If you're darker than a caramel, Reverend Al speaks for you." - Aasif Mandvi
"Well, you can tell by the way I use my walk, I'm a woman's man: no time to talk." - stroh
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