Digital Camera Purchase Questions

Discussion in 'Digital Discussion & Q&A' started by doobs, Oct 12, 2007.

  1. doobs

    doobs TPF Noob!

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    Howdy,

    I've been doing film photography for quite a while now, and I'm looking to purchase a digital camera for shooting as well. I love film, however, digital may be much easier for myself, as I don't have much time in the day to run out, buy film, then go and develop it. So, I intend for using this camera for just kind of shooting around, but also as my main camera, unless it is a picture where I think film should be used. Thus, I am now looking at digital SLRs. I'm wondering what the general consensus of favorite camera types are here and what is suggested. I plan on getting the body, a wide angle lens, a macro lens and probably a fish eye lens. I don't know a thing about digital photography (though I do have skills in editing these pictures -- Photoshop, etc.) so any suggestions would help. I'd also like something with an ISO range from somewhere low (around 50) to high for sports/action or low light shots. I know the point and shoot camera I have is only 80-400. Thanks a ton!

    - Fearless Warrior Dave

    EDIT: Looking at this: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/494375-REG/Canon__EOS_Digital_Rebel_XTi.html
    or:
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/494372-REG/Canon__EOS_Digital_Rebel_XTi.html
     
  2. Big Mike

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

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    I certainly recommend a DLSR over any of the non SLR digital cameras (aside from maybe the Leica M8). One of the biggest differences is the size of the sensor. DSLR cameras have a much larger sensor than 99.9% of digi-cams and that makes for much better image quality, especially at high ISO.

    What is your budget? These things range from $600 to $8000+

    What brand of lenses do you have now? It would make sense that you buy a camera that is compatible with them, rather than buying into a whole new system.

    From the lenses you have listed...there is one thing that you should take into consideration. Most DSLR cameras (all but the top end Canons & Nikons) have a sensor that is slightly smaller than 35mm film. Many of the lenses however, were designed for 35mm film...the result of this is that the sensor sees less of the image circle and you end up with a cropped image. Basically this means that if you use one of these cameras, you have a 'crop factor' that applies to the field of view. For Canon it's 1.6 and Nikon is 1.5. This is really only a comparison factor...comparing back to 35mm film cameras. So when you take a 24mm lens from your film camera, and put it on a 'crop factor' digital body...the field of view will be the same as a 38mm lens would be on film.

    This is important for you because you specified wide angle and fish-eye lenses. The crop factor makes it harder to get that really wide field of view. 17mm on film was really wide...and it's only sort of wide on a crop digital body.

    If you have the money, you could go with a 'full frame digital' like the Canon 5D. Then the field of view for a given focal length will be the same as what you are used to. Another alternative would be to use lenses that are designed specifically for these smaller sensors. For example, I have a Canon EF-S 10-22mm lens....which gives the equivelent FOV as a 16-35mm lens on a film camera....nice and wide.
     
  3. doobs

    doobs TPF Noob!

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    My budget currently depends but I can't imagine it being much higher than $1,500 to 2,000. I would prefer to go as low as I can, and used cameras would be nice as well.

    As for the lenses, they all fit a Pentax K Mount system. (Does this mean I'll have to go with a Pentax?) I have several lenses I love for my 35mm camera, but due to the sensor issue business, they might not come out how I like it. I suppose I could work around that for the time being and invest in some new lenses later. The lenses I have are a Tokina 28mm lens, standard Asahi Pentax 50mm lens, a Promaster 28-210mm Macro Lens, and a 80-200 telephoto lens (I can't for the life of me remember who makes it; I never use it).

    I read the K10D fits the Crippled K2 mount or something. Can the older P-K mount fit it? I was looking at the K10D as it's cheap and a friend of my dad's has one and likes it.

    Looking at this: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/470030-REG/Pentax__K10D_SLR_Digital_Camera.html
     
  4. Big Mike

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

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    I'm fairly certain that those lenses would work with the Pentax DSLR cameras...the K100D and the K10D. Their mount is listed as "Pentax KAF2, KAF, KA mount" LINK for K100D Super

    They certainly won't be compatible with Canon or Nikon cameras etc.
     
  5. doobs

    doobs TPF Noob!

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    At this point I am looking at the K100D (http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/514247-REG/Pentax_19156_K100D_Super_Digital_Camera.html) in just the body. Seeing as how I can use my lenses and all I'll have to do is buy some digital accessories, this should be a fine, and inexpensive investment. Then I'm guessing I'll just buy a couple of those SD cards (or one big one), a bag, and some batteries and I should be fine.

    And for any users of the K100D: How is is? Is the picture quality good? Is it an easy to use and intuitive camera? Should I spend the extra couple hundred bucks and go with the K10D?
     
  6. cpd23

    cpd23 TPF Noob!

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    I am using a Canon 30D that I bopught in May great camer. The 40D just came out as well would suggest you have a look at them.
     
  7. doobs

    doobs TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for the suggestion. I'll check them out, though, I'd prefer to stay with the Pentax K Mount so I don't have to buy new glass. If I don't like the Pentax however, I'll probably go with a Canon.
     
  8. Big Mike

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

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    I would consider buying it with the kit lens, LINK. The 18-55 lens will give you the 'normal to wide' range that you would be missing with your current lenses...and it doesn't add a whole lot to the price.

    I would confirm that your current K mount lenses will work...I think they will but I'm a Canon guy so I don't know for sure.

    Also, B&H is a great place to buy from...if and when you make the purchase, it would help this forum if you used the link at the top of the page. :D
     
  9. doobs

    doobs TPF Noob!

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    Cool, I'll go ahead and get the kit.

    A friend of my dad's has the K100D so I'll try out one of my lenses on it to see if it works.

    If I buy online, I'll make sure to use the forum link! ;)

    Thanks for your help!
     

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