First DSLR, Rebel XSI or D60?

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by JillTx, May 2, 2009.

  1. JillTx

    JillTx TPF Noob!

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    Always had Canon. I wanted a Rebel when my FIL told my DH all I needed was a S2IS, which is what I have now.Time for a DSLR.

    I am mainly taking pictures of my kids, boys sports and girls dance and gymnastics. My needs are no delay and I need to get a great shot from the back of the auditorium to the stage. I would like to play and advance my skills, but I will never strive for professional quality.

    Where should I buy? I am not opposed to used or refurbished, but was thinking maybe new for warranty, but not sure that matters.

    Any help or advice is greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    ~Jill
     
  2. JustAnEngineer

    JustAnEngineer TPF Noob!

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    For indoor sports, you'll want a wide-aperture lens to gather enough light for short exposures to freeze the action. While the $1500 EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM is the telephoto zoom lens that many folks covet, you could start out with less expensive options. Consider adding a $90 EF 50mm f/1.8 or $355 EF 85mm f/1.8 USM lens to your Rebel XSi kit. For daytime outdoor sports, the $240 EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS may be a reasonable telephoto zoom to start with.
     
  3. Katier

    Katier TPF Noob!

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    You really are pushing the limits of budget cameras for what you need. The reasons being that indoors are never well lit so you often need a fast lens and/or good high ISO performance.

    With that in mind I'd look at Pentax. The k-m/k2000 has excellent high ISO performance and it competes on price directly with the two you mention. The other advantage of Pentax is the lenses are cheaper ( but at least as good as, sometimes better, than the competition) and you get in body image stabilisation which saves a bit more cash ( over buying a canon or nikon with in lens stabilisation).

    I would then mate it up with a f2.8 200mm zoom lens, focused manually to optimize the speed of taking.

    By focusing manually the speed of taking a shot is very quick and because your some distance from the subject the chances are you are going to be at infinity anyway ( so no focusing strictly needed ). My 3 zoom ( two 70-200 and one 70-300) lenses are at infinity after 12m, 15m and 20m - so as long as the subject is further than 20 meters away it's pretty much guaranteed to be at infinity.

    That means you'll just aim and shoot.
     
  4. benhasajeep

    benhasajeep TPF Noob!

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    Pentax K20D - And thats from a Nikon / somtimes Canon guy!! About $100 - $150 more than the K2000 body. About $60 more than the Canon XSI.

    For the money, I don't think you can beat it for what you get with it. And for someone who has no intentions of stepping up to a mega pixel monster later on. And starting off from scratch. I think Pentax is a good move. It is water and dust resistant (Nikon D60 nor Canon XSI is), has a strong body, in body anti-shake (Nikon D60 nor Canon XSI), has larger ISO range for low light shooting, and can use Pentax's older lenses. Plus their new lenses are no slouches either! Their better quality lenses are priced much better than the better glass from Nikon and Canon too!

    Pentax is a good system.
     
  5. blash

    blash TPF Noob!

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    We need a budget to work with please.

    That said, I'd get a Nikon D40 or a Nikon D70 (around $300 used), add a 35mm f/1.8 DX lens ($200 new, if you can find one) for short-distance stuff like snapshots at a party or on a vacation, which brings you to $500.

    That's not going to cut it for shooting from the back of the auditorium. For that, you need a long (because you're far from the stage), fast (because indoor light is pretty dim, photographically speaking) lens, which is quite expensive. Ideally, you'd look at the 70-200 f/2.8, which is $1700 or so, or a 300mm f/4 (for which you'll need a tripod or monopod), which is $1400 new, shave off a few hundred for used. And of course, once you get longer than that the prices rise exponentially (over 8 grand for a fast 600mm lens)

    If you choose to get the D70, then you can get a AF 85mm f/1.8D (which I see for $350 new on eBay), but even that's probably going to be a little short. Or, you can get the 180mm f/2.8D (about $350-$400 off eBay, used)... anything longer and you're looking at some big money to put up with, to stick with fast lenses.

    If you choose to get the D40 (and the following lenses will work on the D70 as well), you can try either the 55-200 VR lens ($150 or so used) or the 70-300 VR (I see one for $440 on eBay used). However, both of these lenses are pretty slow, and you can't just take a longer exposure with a tripod because then whatever's happening on stage will be blurred. I include these for completeness but they're not recommended, unless you have a very low budget. Either way, see if you can find a local camera store, and rent a 70-300 G ($100 used, but this doesn't include that VR so you will *need* a $300 tripod) and go to the auditorium in question when it's empty. Sit where you normally sit, aim at the stage, and try to see through the blur (since it's not on a tripod) which focal length you can live with, then return it and buy the fast lens you need.

    Overall, expect to pay at least a grand for a basic setup.

    edit: about Pentax - if you're going to buy 1 or 2 lenses once and never again, and can find what you need from Pentax, then sure go with them. However, for any camera system other than Nikon or Canon, you will find that there aren't too many after-market lenses and not too many ways to expand after your initial purchase. With Nikon or Canon, you can go into flea markets or camera stores and pick up a huge amount of used equipment (as demonstrated above) for a pretty good price... not something you can do when nobody owns Pentax equipment.
     
  6. benhasajeep

    benhasajeep TPF Noob!

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    I disagree with the Pentax statement. Matter of fact the Pentax will mount after market lenses. Including Sigma and Tamron lenses! So there are lots of after market lenses available for the Pentax system! And as for used lenses, unlike Canon. Pentax is like Nikon and can use their older lenses. Heck you can even mount their MF lenses on the darn thing. Since you can use screw mounts you can now add Zeiss to the list of lenses you can use on it as well.

    Full backward lens compatibility
    PENTAX has manufactured over 25 million lenses in the last six decades; all DSLR bodies offer backward compatibility with every one.* Whichever lens is used, whether the most recent lenses or a classic screwmount, it will faithfully capture the image desired.
    *With adapter for screwmount and 645/67 lenses.

    Thats better than nikon in terms of being able to use ALL older lenses!!!

    I should add, to the OP original question. If it were just between the Nikon D60 and XSI. I think I would go with the Nikon D60.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2009
  7. farmerj

    farmerj TPF Noob!

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    I'd suggest finding the lens that you want, and then find the body to go with it.

    You'll use the lens' a lot longer than anybody.
     
  8. prodigy2k7

    prodigy2k7 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I prefer canon, if you go nikon, dont go below D80, auto focus is a must IMO
     
  9. ShotGunNik

    ShotGunNik TPF Noob!

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    +1, one of my favorite features about my XSi. I'm still learning, but my XSi seems to be pretty competative with others in my car club with the D60.
     
  10. bigboi3

    bigboi3 TPF Noob!

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    i had the d60... it was a good body, but the lack of an auto focus motor is what made me go with the d80.
     
  11. ShotGunNik

    ShotGunNik TPF Noob!

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    Yup....I can sense the competition rofl j/k
     
  12. LuckySo-n-So

    LuckySo-n-So TPF Noob!

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    "When my Father-in-law told my Designated Hitter?"

    :shrug:
     

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