Need help buying camera!

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Klaushouse, Dec 2, 2008.

  1. Klaushouse

    Klaushouse TPF Noob!

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    So, I am a member of many a forum, so I understand the plight of mods and members trying to get new members to read other posts instead of just asking. So believe me that I do not do this for shear laziness. This thread comes from my fright of getting something that I don't need or isn't right for me. This isn't a simple question, of course, this decision will cost money. Which is why I want to make sure I get exactly what I need, so I hope you understand and will walk through this with me.

    So I want to get into photography, and buy a camera.

    I am 17, but don't brush me off thinking that I don't need something good, I have loved photography forever and never had a chance to get a good camera until now so I don't want to get something that will have to be replaced any time soon. I am a beginner at proper photography but I need something that I, as a beginner, can use and isn't a waste of money for my skill, but I need something that I can advance quite a bit on also. I am not on a budget per say, although I am not here to buy a 4000$ camera on par with national geographic. But I money isn't really the biggest issue here.

    But I digress! I need something that will last me a long time, as I am 17 and I am quite technologically inclined so I am pretty fast at learning and adapting to things and I would like to think I am pretty good at this. Now I am not even sure how this works, from my understanding I need to buy a camera and an optical lens for it? At least that's what I think. Now: I have a clear cut idea of the type of photography I want to do. I would like to take pictures of nature, trees, plants, animals, fruit, or a building or ancient thing like ruins(outside, more likely), love hiking and that seems like my type of photography. So from my understanding I am looking for a good optical lens and lots of megapixels. Cause I am not afraid of high quality, I thrive for it. Insanely high resolution is what I drool for haha. But I am a close up kind of guy, I am the one who wants to take a really close up picture of a cherry at high resolution, but also things like animals if I see them. Hopefully you catch my drift.

    Anyways, I hope everyone understands what I mean and what I would like to accomplish and you guys could help me out in deciding what to purchase for my endeavors. Again, money isn't the biggest issue, but lets keep it reasonable, I am a beginner, but I don't want to have to switch cameras in a year... and don't be afraid of explaining things to me cause I am quite new at this, but I have always been into this stuff! :3

    Alright then.. hopefully someone will answer. Heck, hopefully a bunch of people will answer and all say the same thing! Cause then I will feel safer in my choice. Thanks a bunch, and I hope to see you on the forums reviews my pictures someday! :)

    EDIT: Oh yeah I am down with digital, not film.. cause I work a lot with my computer.
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2008
  2. prodigy2k7

    prodigy2k7 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Welcome to the forum!
    For reviews on cameras and specs go here: http://dpreview.com

    Okay so... Nikon or Canon !!! Choose one of them, they are the 2 leading companies.
    I prefer Canon over Nikon for beginners because I like auto focus and the beginner line of Nikon cant auto focus all lenses. I think you need at least a Nikon D80 to auto focus all lenses...

    Glass over Body (Its what everyone here says)
    A body only lasts you a few years, glass can last a life time!
    Spend more on your glass than your body!!!

    glass = lenses

    If you are starting out, cheap lenses are fine, but if you want to get ahead of the game get some decent all around lenses like 50mm f/1.4 or 50mm f/1.8

    ...................

    I suggest the following: (Canon only, i dont know nikon well enough...)
    Will you be doing any sports or anything fast paces that requires fast auto focus and fast FPS (Frames per second) shooting?
    If so, get something from the Canon ??D series... (Ex: Canon 40D)
    If not, get something from the Canon ???D series (Ex: Canon 450D)

    The Classes of Canon as like this...

    Entry Level:
    ???D Ex: 450D
    ??D Ex: 50D
    ?D Ex: 5D
    ?D Ex: 1D
    Professional

    5D is way too expensive for entry level (unless you cna afford it...go for it LOL)

    I have the XTi, I recommend the XSi
    Canon EOS Rebel XSi (a.k.a. 450D) SLR Digital Camera Kit (Black) with 18-55mm IS Lens
    $650 http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/542180-REG/Canon_2756B003_EOS_Rebel_XSi_a_k_a_.html

    And if you can...this too:
    Canon Normal EF 50mm f/1.8 II Autofocus Lens
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/12142-USA/Canon_2514A002BA_Normal_EF_50mm_f_1_8.html

    Also a memory card.....and...maybe a backup battery or two :p
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2008
  3. LynziMarie

    LynziMarie TPF Noob!

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    I think the best thing to do is go to your favorite camera store and just play with different cameras and find what feels best for you. For me, it's Nikon. I personally feel that, if you can afford it, it's best to start with a better camera than simply entry level, it gives you more to learn on and you won't have to upgrade as soon. However, if you don't know that you'll be into this forever, I'd stay down on the $$ scale... but it sounds like you love it. Get the best body you can, but Prodigy is 100% right... good lenses make the difference, trust me. I learned the hard way that it's better to have a good body and a bunch of really good lenses vs. a super expensive, nice body with a sub-par lens.

    And don't worry, I'm 18... people here won't use your age against you, in fact, most of the time it's not even thought of! It's all about the photos! :)

    Good luck and have fun camera shopping!!!!!!


    it sounds like you might want some Macro lenses. And possibly a high zoom... like up to 500mm (?) I'm into portrait, so someone else may be able to help you on that part :) but hey! I tried :)
     
  4. tsaraleksi

    tsaraleksi TPF Noob!

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    Canon and Nikon are both good bets, you'll find cameras from both makers that will work for you.

    A wide-to-normal lens is what you'll probably want for landscapes, telephoto is crucial for wildlife photography. An 18-55 or similar kit lens is probably the best place to start, for telephoto, you're going to find some very high prices for good quality lenses. Canon offers a 70-200 f/4 lens that might be a very excellent quality place to start.
     
  5. prodigy2k7

    prodigy2k7 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I think a good starting place... are the following 3 lenses...
    (For Canon)
    Canon EF 50mm F/1.4 or F/1.8
    Canon EF 70-200mm F/4 USM
    Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS

    You got a decent prime, telephoto and wide angle...

    Lens Total Cost: ~$820

    That might sound like a lot but it really isnt. The 70-200mm F/4 USM is like $560 or so last time I checked (few months ago) which is an "L" series lens from Canon, one of the best, its super sharp!

    Also the 50mm is tack sharp as well.... The kit lens is alright, but I think those 3 lenses is a great way to start off...
    Get the kit lens first, then 50mm, then 70-200
    or kit lens, then 70-200 then 50mm

    Get a body like a Canon XSi with kit lens and the other 2 lenses and your ready to go...
    (The kit lens is the 18-55mm mentioned above)
     
  6. Klaushouse

    Klaushouse TPF Noob!

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    Thanks a bunch for the help. The Rebel XSi looks like a good quality starting camera, and I think I am grasping the concept of lens's and names and stuff. Going to take a look at the lenses. But I am also interested as I said in close ups on plans, fruit and other wild things. Would the 18-55 be fine for close ups or would I need another specific lens for that also? :S

    But other than that I think I am loving the XSi, and will have to look at the other lenses a bit more to decide, depending on where I take photos and such! :D
     
  7. AlfromLA

    AlfromLA TPF Noob!

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    I looked at the cameras that were out there for more than two weeks before I came into a forum & asked for more info. The things that mattered before anything else was what is your budgets and once I figured that out, looked at what was out there was, how did the choices I was looking at felt in my hand. Once you get passed that, then the rest will follow.


    Since I was quick to become a Nikon fan I would suggest the D60, low priced & very easy to use. My other choice would be the Canon XS series cheap with lots of goodies in the kits that are out there.
     
  8. ANDS!

    ANDS! No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    If money isn't a concern, get the D300 used (or new for 1300). Several publications camera of the year. Ditches the silly "scene" modes of the entry level cameras, and will force you to think in terms of personal composition than just letting the camera do all the work.

    Unless you have super sausage fingers, or small think sticks, the ergonomics are perfect. Bought mine without ever having held it.
     
  9. Harmony

    Harmony TPF Noob!

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    You sound like someone who'd quickly grow out of an entry level camera. If you want to save money and still get something with custom functions, etc - why not go for the 30D, 40D, 50D (canon)?
     

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