I need opinions on camera for product sale shots... I hate my Kodak.

airtight_python

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I have a Kodak EasyShare Max Z990 and I do not find it satisfactory for my desires. I don't know much of anything about photography, and that's why I'm here.

Things I do NOT like about the Kodak Max Z990:
-Grainy LCD.
-No interchangeable lens.
-Redundant features and settings for shooting modes, effects and photo sharing.
-Poor photo quality (slighly blurry - earth tones are too dull - cooler colors are made too vivid).
-Noisey auto-focus (clicks, buzzes).
-Manual focus is slow and pointless with the grainy LCD.

There isn't much I do like about it, other than the 30x optical zoom (which is not necessary) and large LCD.

Here is what I need... something for taking crisp and true-to-color photos of sale items. I will be setting up a light box/tent and shots will range from a few inches to a few feet.

I'd like to stay around $400 but I do realize that may be a long shot for what I'd like... I'm open to invidual body and lens recommendations.

Thank you
 

nickzou

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At your price range... I'd say get a used D70 (or D70s). Great camera, if you don't mind halfing your resolution for way better IQ.
 

Bitter Jeweler

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When you make your decision and are ready to purchase, also buy the books "Understanding Exposure" and "Light, Science, Magic".
 
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airtight_python

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Thanks fellas.

How does the D5000 stand up to the D70S? I'm seeing used pricing is very similar.

I've already begun studying up on exposure. I'll check out those books, Jeweler.
 

nickzou

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The reason why I suggested that line of cameras (D70, D80, D90) is because they have internal AF motors where as the D5000 and D5100 does not. Which limits you to AF-S lenses and rest assured those lenses are great but some of the older Nikkors are great too but they don't have an internal AF motor on the lens so basically it would be a manual focus lens on a D5000. I like having the option to explore legacy lenses, you'll find that a lot of the older cheaper lenses will suit your needs perfectly. And I can't confirm this but I feel like the advanced consumer cameras have better button layouts and are sturdier (at least that's what it feels like to me). One thing I like about the D70s is that it has an electronic shutter so for flash photography your shutter speed isn't limited to the movement of the mirror.
 

KmH

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One thing I like about the D70s is that it has an electronic shutter so for flash photography your shutter speed isn't limited to the movement of the mirror.
Say what?

Why does the mirror movement matter?

The Nikon D40, D70, and D70s have a mechanical shutter. But, it is only used up to the camera's X-sync flash speed (1/200). When using strobed lighting at shutter speeds faster than the X-sync flash speed the image sensor is then exposed electronically. Basically, the image sensor pixel rows are turned on in a rolling wave fashion to mimick the slit the 2 shutter curtains make on other camera's at shutter speeds that exceed the X-sync shutter speed.

Nikon did that to save money on the shutter mechanism. The electronic control of the shutter is also used for nonb-flash images.

The X-sync speed is the fastest shutter speed that has both shutter curtains fully open during an exposure. at shutter speeds faster than the X-sync speed, one or both curtains cover a portion of the image sensor, effectively forming a slit that gets ever narrower as shutter speed gets faster.
 
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thierry

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airtight_python

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I've got that book on order. I'm now also considering the D200. I'll read some comparisons and make a decision from there. Thanks for the starting point gentlemen. The Nikons look like great cameras and should be a nice change from the PAS, or POS rather, I'm used to.
 

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