Beginning DSLR setup

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by summers_enemy, Aug 26, 2005.

  1. summers_enemy

    summers_enemy TPF Noob!

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    Hey all :)

    I've recently reconsidered buying a Panasonic FZ30 after reading some reviews on it and I've decided just to bite the bullet and buy a DSLR instead. I love the Nikon D50. It seems to have just about everything I want in a camera without being cheesy-ish like the RebelXT (sorry, my probably unfounded, opinion of those cameras) and without being a monster like the D70. Plus it takes SD cards so I won't need to buy new memory cards.

    So basically this is what I'm thinking of ordering:

    Nikon D50 "kit" with 18-55mm f/3.6-5.4 (I think that's correct) Nikkor lens.
    Sigma 55-200mm f/4-5.6
    Tiffen 55mm UV filter

    I can get all of the above for about $900. Does this sound like a good plan to you guys? It's my first foray into even seriously considering a DSLR so please, if something seems funky to you, let me know.

    Your opinions and thoughts are most appreciated.

    Tina :)
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Sounds like a good plan. I'm sure the D50 will be much, much better than any digi-cam.

    Looks like a good kit, those lenses are far from being top quality but they should still be good for someone just starting out with a DSLR. I didn't know much about that Sigma lens, so I looked up a few reviews. People seem to think that it's a good lens, for the money...not spectacular but fairly inexpensive.

    You might want to look into a fast lens as some point, as neither of these are too fast. (by fast I mean having a wide maximum aperture). Look into a 50mm F1.8 or another one of the prime (non-zoom) lenses.
     
  3. summers_enemy

    summers_enemy TPF Noob!

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    Thanks Mike :) I figured they weren't anything stellar but they would give me a starting point.

    Now for my embarassing question of the day... what exactly are the benefits of having a "fast" lens? I know they're better, I've picked up on that much. Just curious about why that is?
     
  4. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    A fast lens has a wider maximum aperture (bigger hole)...that means that it can let in more light. More light means that you can use a faster shutter speed, a faster shutter speed can mean the difference between a blurry shot and a sharp shot.

    For example, it's getting dark and you want to take a photo of your friend, without using the flash. With a kit lens, the aperture only opens up to F3.5 max...and the camera is telling you that you would need a shutter speed of 1/15. If you are holding the camera at that speed, you will get some blurriness from camera shake. But if you could open up the aperture two stops to F1.8...you could decrease the shutter speed two stops...to 1/60...much better chance of getting a sharp shot.

    Next example, you are taking a photo of your friend but you want to make the background blurry. The wider the aperture, the shorter the DOF.

    Next example, when you are looking through the viewfinder & lens of the camera...the lens aperture is wide open to give you the most light to see (& for the camera to autofocus)...so if the lens has a maximum aperture that is wider...you get more light into the viewfinder...which makes it easier to see and to focus.
     
  5. summers_enemy

    summers_enemy TPF Noob!

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    Oh! I get it! :idea:

    Thank you so much, you've just done what 2 photography teachers couldn't do. I've never understood that :blushing:
     
  6. summers_enemy

    summers_enemy TPF Noob!

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    Hmmm... been reading the reviews on Steve's Digicams today. I'm now having second thoughts after seeing comparison images from the Rebel XT. The shots from the D50 seem to somehow look "dirty" in comparison. There's too much green in them for my tastes. Easily correctible in PS, but if I wanted to spend hours correcting images I'd of just kept my Lumix :roll:

    Still want one, but the Rebel is starting to look more attractive... Any thoughts?
     
  7. hobbes28

    hobbes28 Incredible Supporting Member

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    check out the review on www.dpreview.com He does huge sample image galleries with every camera he tests plus you can put the two cams side by side for a review.

    That and like we all say, go and grab a hold of both of them to see how they feel. The way either of them feel may be all it takes for you to move more towards one than the other.
     

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