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Beginer DSLR dilemna - Need help
Hi.

I have been wanting to buy a Digital SLR for over a year after having really finding it difficult to stretch my P&S any further. However like all new comers find it difficult to decide.. From what I have read the lenses and teh feel of teh camera in hand is as important as the camera itself but cant decide whether the new models/ Nikon Canon offer something substantially better for the price they command..

Have narrowed down the choices (and there are manyill).. Price is imp as this is my first experience with DSLR and dont know how far the love will go. (Price below incl the cost of bag, Tripod etc but no external flash).

1 Canon 30D 28-135 IS USM + EF 50mmf/1.8 + 75-300 III - $1700. Pros: Good camera Cons: Expensive, doesnt have the dust removal and the Image stabiliser in the camera(Can I bring down the cost by changing to other lenses, but quality is important when I start). If I am spending soo much should I spend another $200 for 40D but then it is $2000 apprix.

2 Nikon D80 18-135 DX +55-200 VR +Nikkor 50mm - $1700 Pros and cons same as above.. Can I save on costs from lenses.

3 Canon 400D + 17-85 IS USM + EF 50mmf/1.8 + 75-300 III - $1500. Biggest con didnt like the feel of camera in the hand + Costs (I can lower another $200 by going with 350D istead of 400D, will that make sense).

4. Pentax K10 18-55 + Pentax 50mm f/1.4 + Sigma 70-300 APO Macro - Price $1400, can be brought to $1300 based on current rebates but dont know whether they will be in Oct, same as the 350D above).. Pros:Looks like a good camera on paper but have the resolved the picture softness mentioned in review Cons :might be difficult to get lenses ??? (though lower price compensates for having to discard later).

Apart from thsi there are a coupel fo other questions1 Should I buy an extra battery and the battery grip2 Should I buy an external flash.

3 Can you claim back sales tax/ not pay sales tax if you are visitng the US (does anyone know the Sales tax rate in Ohio).

I know it is a very long post but I am really confused and dont want not to act while I am in teh US.. thanks so much for your help..

Comments (10)

FWIW, I have the 30D and love it. Dust problems/removal have been quite insignificant. Bought the copperhill eclipse fluid and pec pads and have cleaned the sensor once on 9 months. I will do it again before I shoot anything "important", but it's really minor..

One thing about Canon is that they should start a rebate program soon (October?), so if you go that route, this may effect your cash outlay. Keep your eyes open for upcoming deals and make a decision soon. Taking pictures is more fun than comparing camera systems over and over..

Cameras and lenses hold their value very well also, so if you start with a system and don't like it you're not out that much if you want to try another.Good luck!JonGive me something to shoot..

Comment #1

Sankalp sethi wrote:.

1 Canon 30D 28-135 IS USM + EF 50mmf/1.8 + 75-300 III - $1700. Pros:Good camera Cons: Expensive, doesnt have the dust removal and theImage stabiliser in the camera(Can I bring down the cost bychanging to other lenses, but quality is important when I start). IfI am spending soo much should I spend another $200 for 40D but thenit is $2000 apprix.

Dust removal is a gimmick - don't let that sway you. The 75-300 lens is a piece of junk - don't waste your time or money..

2 Nikon D80 18-135 DX +55-200 VR +Nikkor 50mm - $1700 Pros and conssame as above.. Can I save on costs from lenses.

Can't speak for Nikon as I'm a Canon person..

3 Canon 400D + 17-85 IS USM + EF 50mmf/1.8 + 75-300 III - $1500.Biggest con didnt like the feel of camera in the hand + Costs (I canlower another $200 by going with 350D istead of 400D, will that makesense).

If you didn't like the feel, that is something important to consider. I personally would never consider them due to their small size, but otherwise they are both good cameras (but if I had to choose I'd go with the 400D simply for the newer technology it employs)..

4. Pentax K10 18-55 + Pentax 50mm f/1.4 + Sigma 70-300 APO Macro -Price $1400, can be brought to $1300 based on current rebates butdont know whether they will be in Oct, same as the 350D above)..Pros:Looks like a good camera on paper but have the resolved thepicture softness mentioned in review Cons :might be difficult to getlenses ??? (though lower price compensates for having to discardlater).

Don't waste your time - Canon and Nikon are the best - go with one of them. Remember, you're not buying a camera, you are buying a camera system..

Apart from thsi there are a coupel fo other questions1 Should I buy an extra battery and the battery grip.

Extra battery definitely - grip is a waste of money if money is tight..

2 Should I buy an external flash.

For flash photography, they are a must... but that doesn't mean you need it right away..

My recommendation - get a Canon or Nikon and ONE lens to start with. Not getting the 50 1.8 and 75-300 (if you go Canon) will take well over $200 off your bottom line...

Comment #2

I'd skip the 50mm, unless you have a specific need for it, like portraiture. It's too long for most purposes..

I would get an external flash. The ability to use bounce flash makes a huge difference. Also, you can use direct flash over much longer distances, easily 50 feet depending on aperture and ISO..

I would also choose between Canon and Nikon. They offer way more lenses, and you have the option of renting them...

Comment #3

Thanks Jon, thats exactly teh way I feel now go and buy a camera .

You say you have a 30D, what lenses would you recommend fo rthat/ which are you using right now..

Comment #4

Thanks for the tip.. someone told me that I should buy atleast a 50mm as it is cheap and would help me get hooked to the Digital.. Havent used it so cant say.. Any opinion.. Would you say wait 6-8 months or put it upfront to get hooked..

Comment #5

Lenses are very subjective and dictated by needs and shooting style. When I bought my first DSLR 5 years ago I fell into the "You must get the 50 1.8" trap. Don't get me wrong, it's a good lens - great for the price. But it didn't suit my needs. It was the first lens I sold off. That's why I say get one lens - as you use it you'll begin to see what you need in your next lens - more reach? wider angle? Faster aperture? etc.

So don't worry that the first lens you buy might not be one you stick with. Lenses - especially Canon (and I assume Nikon) hold their value well. Two lenses that I have sold, sold for more than I bought new, and the other ones I've sold have averaged about 90% of what I paid for them..

Sankalp sethi wrote:.

Thanks for the tip.. someone told me that I should buy atleast a 50mmas it is cheap and would help me get hooked to the Digital.. Haventused it so cant say.. Any opinion.. Would you say wait 6-8 months orput it upfront to get hooked.

Some cool cats that can use your helphttp://www.wildlife-sanctuary.org.

Even if you can't donate, please help spread the word...

Comment #6

Sankalp sethi wrote:.

Hi.

I have been wanting to buy a Digital SLR for over a year after havingreally finding it difficult to stretch my P&S any further. Howeverlike all new comers find it difficult to decide.. From what I haveread the lenses and teh feel of teh camera in hand is as important asthe camera itself but cant decide whether the new models/ Nikon Canonoffer something substantially better for the price they command..

Have narrowed down the choices (and there are manyill).. Price is impas this is my first experience with DSLR and dont know how far thelove will go. (Price below incl the cost of bag, Tripod etc but noexternal flash).

1 Canon 30D 28-135 IS USM + EF 50mmf/1.8 + 75-300 III - $1700. Pros:Good camera Cons: Expensive, doesnt have the dust removal and theImage stabiliser in the camera(Can I bring down the cost bychanging to other lenses, but quality is important when I start). IfI am spending soo much should I spend another $200 for 40D but thenit is $2000 apprix2 Nikon D80 18-135 DX +55-200 VR +Nikkor 50mm - $1700 Pros and conssame as above.. Can I save on costs from lenses3 Canon 400D + 17-85 IS USM + EF 50mmf/1.8 + 75-300 III - $1500.Biggest con didnt like the feel of camera in the hand + Costs (I canlower another $200 by going with 350D istead of 400D, will that makesense)4. Pentax K10 18-55 + Pentax 50mm f/1.4 + Sigma 70-300 APO Macro -Price $1400, can be brought to $1300 based on current rebates butdont know whether they will be in Oct, same as the 350D above)..Pros:Looks like a good camera on paper but have the resolved thepicture softness mentioned in review Cons :might be difficult to getlenses ??? (though lower price compensates for having to discardlater).

Apart from thsi there are a coupel fo other questions1 Should I buy an extra battery and the battery grip2 Should I buy an external flash3 Can you claim back sales tax/ not pay sales tax if you are visitngthe US (does anyone know the Sales tax rate in Ohio).

I know it is a very long post but I am really confused and dont wantnot to act while I am in teh US.. thanks so much for your help.

HI.

Firstly go and have a play with as many cameras as you can. You may like the specs of one but not the feel..

There are a lot of dumb statements made about not buying anything but Canon or Nikon ....there is no sensible basis for this.... it usually goes something like will Pentax be around in 5 years?....they have been for decades...so why not? Ask those people if they will still be using the same camera in 5 years?.

My opinion is that Sony will probabaly be number 1 in 5 years with Canon and Samsung (using Pentax mount) and Nikon all doing well...as will Pentax and Oly....IF we are still using dslrs as now...if not then it is likely that the Electronics companies will be the leaders in imaging (Sony/Samsung even phone companies like Nokia..

It will only take one camera from anyone to make all of this obsolete....so buy for what you want NOW, not from the rambling opinions of people with nothing better to do on the internet...(and I include myself in this as well)...that way you just may find you get a better camera than if you just stuck to one or two brands..

Manufacturers like Pentax and Olympus certainly offer better value for money right now..

Canon is probably going to lose market share to Nikon over the coming year so it wuld not suprise if you could get some real bargains from Canon......but at the same time the K10d from Pentax is the camera that is winnning the awards. (I suspect the one that will do that next year will be the Nikon D3 unless something else exceptional comes out over the next few months)..

Neil..

Comment #7

Nikon and Canon have dominated the serious amateur and professional market for 40 years now (since the Pentax screw-mount days). The others make very nice cameras, but don't offer near the choice of lenses. Which doesn't necessarily matter since most people use 1-3 lenses. You might say "I'll never buy a $6,000 lens, so why does it matter if they're offered for my camera?" The answer is that you might want to rent or borrow one..

As far as manufacturers leaving the market, Minolta recently did. Sony is in poor financial shape, and is losing hundreds of millions on the PS3. I don't know about the others..

I'm not saying you shouldn't consider the other brands, but I personally wouldn't...

Comment #8

Step 1. Go to a camera store. Play with all of the cameras. Ignore salespeople and posters who try to limit your choices. If the world can support dozens of car manufacturers, toaster makers, and bevys of other product manufacturers, the world can also support 5-7 DSLR makers. There is a reason major electronics companies are tripping all over themselves to get into the DSLR market.

Thus, the camera that feels the best in your hand is the one you should consider the strongest - no different than test driving a car..

Step 2. Consider what kinds of photos you will be taking. Do you enjoy hiking in all kinds of weather and subjecting yourself to the elements? Than that favors the Pentax (or another weather-sealed body). Do you shoot sports? That might favor a Canon. Do your hands shake when taking pictures? Then some kind of stabilization might be beneficial. Low-light common? etc.....

Step 3. Do not skimp on lenses. Your body is no more than digital film. Important, but the lenses make the picture, and your lenses (if you buy good ones) will depreciate the least. That is true regardless of whether you buy a Nikon or Canon, or if you buy a Sony or Pentax (all of whom have little, if any, depreciation in their quality lenses)..

Step 4. Go out and take pictures. There are no bad DSLRs, so you will not make a bad choice. But make the best choice for you, not for the salesman or Poster X. Only you can say how you like a cameras ergonomics, and only you determine your photographic style. Pick the camera that matches that, not the most popular or the trendiest.http://jcharding.zenfolio.com/..

Comment #9

IMac, therefore iAm wrote:.

Don't waste your time - Canon and Nikon are the best - go with one ofthem. Remember, you're not buying a camera, you are buying a camerasystem..

What an arrogant statement! You probably drive only Ferraris and Porsches because they are best, right? .

When you talk about an amateurs all that "camera system" issue is blown out of proportion. All systems (including Olympus Pentax and Sony) provides more than enough for an amateur. Equipment definately won't be a limiting factor in your creativity .

And if you choose something different than big two, usually you can get equipment cheaper. Olympus/Pentax/Sony all have image stabilisation in body, so compare their non stabilised lens prices with Canon IS and Nikon VR and you'll see what I am talking about..

Edvinas..

Comment #10

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This question was taken from a support group/message board and re-posted here so others can learn from it.

 

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