Looking for Advice on Starter Camera

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by runningbrookfarms, Sep 22, 2008.

  1. runningbrookfarms

    runningbrookfarms TPF Noob!

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    I am looking for some advice on a new camera. I currently have a Nikon Coolpix S2 but I am looking to upgrade to something I can do a little more with. I'm not great at photography but am going to be taking a class and learning how to take "grown up" pictures. My husband and I travel out of the country a lot and I want to bring home photos that really capture where we have been. I don't think I am ready for a camera that has interchangable lenses yet but I think I need something with a little more flexibility than I currently have. I know that I need good low light photo capability, the ability to take photos of animals moving, and scenery. Of course the normal family pics but those are really secondary to me. We are going to Belize in February and so since this will be a big photo trip I want to be prepared! Any advice I can get would be really appreciated!
     
  2. eurytopic

    eurytopic TPF Noob!

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    What kind of budget are you working with? There is no need to be afraid of an SLR (interchangeable lenses). My first SLR was a Nikon D70 and I left the kit lens on it the entire time I had it. It took amazing pictures, did well in low light, and good for action too. Most consumer level SLR's have a mode button, so you can just keep it in auto or program auto (P) and take great pictures without having to memorize the manual and allow yourself to take amazing pictures in manual modes if and when you get to that level.

    Low light photography usually needs one (or a combination) of 3 things.

    1. Fast lens ($$$$$)
    2. High ISO capability (low noise high ISO= $$$$$$$)
    3. Flash
     
  3. JustAnEngineer

    JustAnEngineer TPF Noob!

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    4. Tripod. (¢¢, though more than the flash option)

    An entry-level Nikon or Canon DSLR with a fast lens like the Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 might meet the OP's needs.
     
  4. eurytopic

    eurytopic TPF Noob!

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    Tripod.. Duh.. I always forget that one. I guess it's because I have a crappy tripod and I hate using it! Of course a tripod only works well on stationary objects. But again, without a ballpark budget it's impossible to recommend anything.
     
  5. runningbrookfarms

    runningbrookfarms TPF Noob!

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    Sorry - I forgot to put in what I was looking to spend! I'm thinking around $350 but I know that if I get an SLR they might be a bit more. I think I would try and find a good used one of those so if everyone thinks I could get away with using something like that then I would research a good used one that might fit into my budget. So, recommend away! :) Thanks everyone!!!
     
  6. Bifurcator

    Bifurcator TPF Noob!

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    Depending on your definition of "good" you might just be describing things that only a dSLR can deliver.

    Focus and AE tracking is pretty good on some bridge cameras but low light photography is fairly exclusive to dSLRs tripod or not.

    $350 really kills it though. I suggest a used bridge camera of some kind. I just (6 months ago) moved from a $5,000 Nikon (D2x) and started shooting with a $250 (current price) bridge camera I had in storage - the Konica/Minolta A2 and I'm digging it. I know it's limits though. :D That might be a good camera for you...

    Here's the best review I've ever read on the camera: http://www.imaging-resource.com/PRODS/A2/A2A.HTM

    It covers ALL of the pros and cons unlike so many other articles!
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2008
  7. Bifurcator

    Bifurcator TPF Noob!

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  8. eurytopic

    eurytopic TPF Noob!

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  9. Bifurcator

    Bifurcator TPF Noob!

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    I think if he wants an SLR that there's lots better dSLRs for $400 to $450 than anything he can get from Canon or Nikon at that price. So, I'd have to agree with your biased disclaimer. :D
     
  10. eurytopic

    eurytopic TPF Noob!

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    There might be better point and shoot cameras for $400, but when you are talking SLR it's not just about the camera anymore, but buying a system. Lenses, flashes, grips, batteries, etc. No two manufactures have more selection than Canon or Nikon. Not to mention more popular products are much easier to get support, (technical and educational) repair, and advise. There are far more choices for lenses in Canon and Nikon.

    Unbiassedly, this canon Rebel is probably a better choice. This Canon probably will take better low light pictures than the Nikon D70s because of the sensor too.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Canon-Digital-R...39:1|66:2|65:15|240:1308&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14

    $418 shipped, good lens, and Canon's lenses are less expensive (and more plentiful than any other manufacturer.

    The only other SLR's I see on ebay right now close in price (buy it now) are the Pentax K110 (great camera, less aftermarket) and the Olympus E-410 (great camera, nice 2.5" screen, again less aftermarket).

    Perhaps there are better cameras in this price range, but camera system? I disagree.
     
  11. reg

    reg TPF Noob!

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    Yeah, because everybody needs 15 different 105/2.8 Macro lenses from the same maker, fifty different 70-200s, and a 50mm fixed in every maximum aperture from 1.2 to 16.
     
  12. dEARlEADER

    dEARlEADER TPF Noob!

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    you forgot tilt shift lenses and 400mm primes
     

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