Digital or non-digital SLR cameras?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by DoctorBeat, Sep 27, 2007.

  1. DoctorBeat

    DoctorBeat TPF Noob!

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    hi everyone! I need a little help!
    i would like to know if digital SLR's (I'm looking to buy a Canon 400D, what do you think?), allow the photographer to manually configure the shutter speed, the aperture of the lenses and the focal length. I'm work on a 35mm SLR, but i can't figure out how do you configure those settings on a Digital SLR. So i need a little help before i actually buy one. Is the configuration made on the software? i don't see any indication of the f-stops on the actual lenses, so I'm confused.
    Another question: a lens like the USM IS series from Canon will allow me to configure manually my preferences? from what I've read only the USM series allows you to change the focal length, is that true?

    Thanks in advanced, sorry for my bad English...
     
  2. Buszaj

    Buszaj TPF Noob!

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    with dSLRs you can control pretty much everything. on the dial there's usually and M for manual or whatever symbol, but there is manual. there you can adjust your shutter speed, and aperture (whatever amount the lens is capable of). and the lenses do indicate the f stop measurements in the name of the lens. Ex: Canon EF 70-200 f/2.8L IS USM, or 100-400 f/4.5-5.6L USM. I'm not a 100% sure about the aperture because some lenses adjust the aperture depending on which focal length you are on. Unless the aperture is constant throughout the focal lenghts. That's what I THINK. So ya, in a dSLR you can control shutter speed and most of the time aperture.

    P.S: Even though I don't have an SLR, I still know about them! :D
     
  3. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I think I understand the confusion.

    Older manual SLRs had lenses with an aperture ring from which you set the aperture and a dial of some sort on the body itself that controls the shutter. On newer SLRs (including DSLRs) these two settings are controlled electronically by either wheels or buttons on the body itself.

    For the Canon 400D, first you set the mode by turning this dial to "M":
    http://a.img-dpreview.com/reviews/CanonEOS400D/Images/topcontrols.jpg

    The "main" wheel is the dial just behind the shutter button. The main dial/wheel can be seen also in the picture above. If you turn this wheel while the dial is in "M" mode, you will change the shutter.

    On the back of the camera, you will see an Av/+- button like picture here:
    http://a.img-dpreview.com/reviews/CanonEOS400D/Images/rearcontrols.jpg
    To set the aperture, hold the button down and turn the main dial.

    it has been a little while since I've used a digital rebel, so please let me know if I'm off in my instructions.
     
  4. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    As for you next question.

    USM - Ultra-Sonic-Motor - This provides fast autofocus action.
    IS - Image Stabilizer - This uses a gyroscope to help compensate for handshake.

    Canon lenses generally also have a switch (marked M and A) that allow for autofocus and Manual focus operation. In autofocus, you simply point and hold the button down half way. The camera will automatically focus the lens to the subject. In Manual mode, you will have to focus the lens yourself via a focus ring just as you did with your older SLR.

    None of these "features" on the lens really determine focal length or the lens' ability to reach a certain focal length
     
  5. DoctorBeat

    DoctorBeat TPF Noob!

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    thanks guys, you really helped me :)
    Usayit, you really understand my problem: the missing aperture ring.
    Once again thanks
     

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