Advice on Camera

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by dostagamom, May 23, 2007.

  1. dostagamom

    dostagamom TPF Noob!

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    I am a new photographer wanting to improve my picture taking skills. I currently have a Kodak camera that really has no bells and whistles. I want to purchase a new camera that has more options. I want a good camera, but I do not want to grow out of the camera in a few years. I am starting to take pictures for my friends and their children and would love to make a business out of this one day. What type of camera do I need to get started? I would appreciate any help.:)
     
  2. TheOtherBob

    TheOtherBob TPF Noob!

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    Welcome to the forum. If you're looking to turn your picture-taking into a business, then you'd most likely need a pretty expensive camera, lenses, flashes, lighting, etc. I'm sure there are people here who can advise on that. My view is that you should start with a camera that you'll enjoy and can learn on, and worry about business much later, but that's just my view.

    But it might help if you tell us a bit more about the price range you're looking at, and the things you want to shoot (i.e. just friends and kids, or maybe nature, landscapes, etc.) What camera do you have now - and what do you want to be able to do with it that you can't?
     
  3. pandinus

    pandinus TPF Noob!

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    I aggree with "TheOtherBob" on this one. If you know what pricerange you looking at, it might be easier to narow the field down.

    I'd suggest a DSLR camera, and save up for lenses flashes etc. as you go. That's how I do it. I bought a camera, and a lense then saved up for the next one and so on. My collection of equipment grows with time, and if you buy equipment you like and are happy with it is not likely that you'll want to change them, even if you buy a new camera...

    I hope you'll find a camera you'll enjoy.
     
  4. dostagamom

    dostagamom TPF Noob!

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    I am looking to spend somewhere between $500 and $1000 for a camera. I think that is a great idea to buy the necesities and then save up other equipment as you go. What brand do you prefer...Cannon or Nikon? Or is there another brand? Thanks for all of the advice.
     
  5. TheOtherBob

    TheOtherBob TPF Noob!

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    I use Canon, but Nikon is also good. The difference between the two generally comes down to which feels better in your hand. I've also heard good things about Sony and Pentax, but never used them. That price range gives you a lot of options - you could look at a Canon 20D (which are no longer made, so can be hard to find), or a used / refurbished 30D (these are great cameras that hold up well, so generally ok to buy refurbished - in my view). You could also look at a Canon Rebel series - Xt or Xti - which would be a bit less expensive. I prefer the 20D / 30D just because they're a bit bigger and feel better in my hand - but they're all great cameras, and it's really about which one feels good to you. (Best Buy is a good way to check that, by the way - they usually have a display where you can hold all the different cameras, though I think their pricing is too high.)

    On the Nikon side, you could look at a D40 or D40x, D50, or D70 (or D80 if you want to stretch the budget a bit). I have no experience with these, but have heard good things.

    There is some debate as to whether to get just the camera body and buy a different lens, or to get the kit lens that comes with the camera - peoples' mileage varies, but I'm a big fan of the kit lenses (at least the one that originally came with my Canon).

    You didn't raise this, but one quick note on buying - there are a lot of disreputable internet sellers (many based in Brooklyn, for some reason) that will take your money and never actually send the camera. Many people here use B&H Photo (a link's at the top of the page) or Adorama - both have low prices and are generally considered honest, reliable, and generally well-regarded. Amazon.com or Newegg.com also sometimes have good prices. There are many reputable dealers out there - but also a few really bad apples. (You can also check www.resellerratings.com to find reviews of camera stores.)
     
  6. dostagamom

    dostagamom TPF Noob!

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    Thank you so much for the GREAT advice. I really appreciate it. Do you think it is best to buy digital or film camera?
     
  7. firemedic0135

    firemedic0135 TPF Noob!

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    I would say digital hands down.Not because I hate film or think its outdated but because you get instant feedback on your efforts.It costs nothing to use and you can shoot until you run out of memory.
    The benefit to film in my opinion is that you can get a really nice setup for less money than digital.
     
  8. dostagamom

    dostagamom TPF Noob!

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    Yeah...I do like the instant feedback that you get with a digital camera. It is so much easier. Thank you very much for the advice. I will take it so that I may make a wiser decision when purchasing my new camera.
    Thanks alot
     
  9. blackdoglab

    blackdoglab yeah I'm easy.... but I'm not cheap

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    Try both! Borrow a film slr and a dslr and see which one you like. Get to know yer local camera place and see what they have.
     
  10. RobinChen

    RobinChen TPF Noob!

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    I went with a DSLR canon 30D. FABULOUS camera. Really has more bells and whistles than I need right now. Over time I'd definetely like to get to know how to use the camera and take advantage of all the features it has to offer. I got mines at Newegg with the kit lens 28mm-135mm for about $1400 +/- and some 2GB memory kingston 133x This setup has me to be able to shoot about almost anything I want. Since I have been using it for about 2 weeks now, I finally realized that I like to take some closer shots and with a deeper DOF so I'm going to grab a 50mm 1.8 soon. Start out with a camera that feels good for you and remember that if you are going to get serious over time, this is all just an initial investment that would surely pay over time. Hope that helps and good luck with your decision.
     

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