Entry-level mirrorless camera

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by wiiawiwb, Sep 2, 2017.

  1. wiiawiwb

    wiiawiwb TPF Noob!

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    I am inexperienced with cameras having only had point-and-shoot ones. I'm looking to get a camera to bring with me when I backpack. I would use it to take pictures of animals and birds I encounter. The area I backpack in is heavily wooded and I am almost always under the canopy of trees. The maximum distance I would using the camera would be 50 yards, most often 20-30 yards.

    I have a point-and-shoot camera and the problem is that when I see an animal, say a fox, there are trees, branches, and bushes between me and the fox. The camera doesn't know which object to focus on and, in certain instances, there might only be a fox's head showing behind a tree. So, manual focus seems to be a priority along with smaller size for backpacking purposes.

    The SONY a6000 is one that I've looked at and handled. It felt good. Would this be fair choice for an entry-level mirrorless? Also, would it be prudent to get manual lenses and adapters so I can manually focus? Finally, what lenses would be appropriate? 15-50mm, 24-70mm, 55-200mm, other?

    1. What: What equipment do you wish to buy? Camera and lenses.
    2. How much do you want to spend: What is your budget? No more than $600 for the camera.
    3. To do what: What do you want to photograph? Wildlife.
    4. To use where: Where do you like/need to take pictures? In a forest setting.
    5. What are you like: What's your profile as a photographer? Total novice.
    6. What do you have: What's your current gear? Point and shoot
    7. How's your "network": What do your friends, family, neighbours use? No idea.
    8. Where to buy: Where do you wish to buy? Local if possible but open to online.



     
  2. dck22

    dck22 TPF Noob!

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    I got my wife a Fuji X-A3 with a Fujinon XC 16-50mm lens. it would fit your budget and requirements nicely.
     
  3. jaomul

    jaomul Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Maybe an Olympus OMD EM10, mark 2 with twin kit lens. This would give you a 14-42 mm and 40-150mm lenses. There are plenty of features including a rear screen that can be made to focus and take the shot with just a touch on where you'd like to focus
     
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  4. fmw

    fmw No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    It looks like a nice choice to me. It has a high resolution APS-C sensor and the Sony lens line is extensive and very good.
     
  5. petrochemist

    petrochemist TPF junkie!

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    If it's only the wildlife of interest then I think the 14-42 would be redundant. My experience is that I can never get close enough for that sort of FOV. Even the 150 could be somewhat short for small birds at 20-30 yards. If landscape type shots are also wanted it will certainly prove useful!

    It may well be that touch screen type autofocus (mentioned by Jaomul) will prove usable, allowing you to select a smaller area to focus on & ignore the bushes. If that works I expect you'll find it much easier than manual focus. Nailing the focus with manual can be rather tricky particularly if you only have a short time to react, newer camera models generally have focus peaking to help with this, though it's not on any of my bodies, zooming in with the EVF does help considerably.

    Mirrorless cameras are very good with adapted lenses. If you are going to need manual focus anyway then legacy lenses become a great option, with thousands of zooms in the 80-200 region available for around $30, as well as a huge range of telephoto primes...

    Dense forests are generally rather gloomy places, so I suspect you'll need fast lenses &/or great high ISO performance, neither of which are budget options :( Your price range (like mine) rules out the best low light cameras, so getting great results will be a real challenge, but with a practice you should still start getting a good number of keepers.
     
  6. goodguy

    goodguy Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Get the Sony a6000, to the kit lens add the Sony 55-210, good basic kit lens, will give you the reach you need for relatively little money, I got my 55-210mm used, saved a lot of money this way.
    Learn how to use the camera correctly, if you use camera in Auto mode it will choose what it wants to focus on, by getting out of the Auto mode you will tell what the camera should focus on.
     
  7. beagle100

    beagle100 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    when you see a fox ........... take the shot (with a mirrorless camera and an old old cheap lens)


    [​IMG]Untitled by c w, on Flickr
     

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