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Thread: Camera Experts: New DSLR Camera

  1. #1
    What is and what should never be Crissytal's Avatar
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    Camera Experts: New DSLR Camera

    I'm finally taking the plunge and getting a DSLR camera. I can't afford the top-of-the-line and most of this stuff is ridiculously over priced in my opinion. I've done a fair amount of research and plan to get the Canon EOS Rebel T1i 15.10 MP. The kit lens seem to be pretty much junk, so I may decide to opt out on the EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS lens and just get the body only. It's roughly ~$100 in cost between getting the lens or just getting the camera body.

    Lens wise I want to get a zoom and a macro. I know most zoom lenses have the capabilities of taking macro shots. I want a true 1:1 macro, the zooms can't do that.

    These are the lenses I picked out:
    Tamron AF28-300mm F/3.5-6.3 XR Di VC LD
    Tamron SP 90mm f/2.8 Di 1:1 AF Macro Auto Focus Lens

    As you can see, I don't care about the Canon name when it comes to lenses. These two seem to be decent, but would like some thoughts and opinions from those that are more experienced than myself.

    I am getting the SanDisk 8GB Extreme III SDHC memory card to be used as my primary card. A 16gb would be nice, but it's about triple the cost. I can always pick up another 8gb later on (a Class 6 memory card is recommended for the camera I have selected).

    I have picked out the Tiffen 55mm filter kit that includes a UV filter, Circular polarizer, and a 812 color warming filter. I might pick up a skylight filter as well, maybe. I have selected a step ring to convert the filters to work with the zoom lens (macro is 55mm, zoom lens is 67mm) so I will not have to purchase two lens kits. The 55mm kit is the cheaper of the two, that is why I went with 55mm.

    I have selected an extra battery (Canon brand) and am going with a Lowepro Slingshot 200 camera bag.

    I think that about does it. I'm not too worried about flash right now. A decent one puts me well above my budget. I can throw a little light box together lined with black fabric for macro shots. I may look into getting a remote shutter release. I haven't decided on that yet. I will most likely get some kind of book to help teach me how to use the camera as well.

    I would very much appreciate any thoughts, opinions, and recommendations.

    Thanks everyone,
    Crystal
    Where do we go when we just don't know,
    And how do we relight the flame when it's cold?
    Why do we dream when our thoughts mean nothing,
    And when will we learn to control?
    --Godsmack

  2. #2
    rattler's Avatar
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    sounds like your line of thinking is fine......the low end Canon lenses, especially kit lenses suck.....but so do Nikons....high end Canons are good though but Tamron and Sigma make good glass aswell.....read up all the reviews you can find on every lens you look to buy, every maker has dogs in their line up.....and only pay attention to the reviews where ppl spend time comparing them to similar priced glass......drives me nuts when ppl complain it aint like their Canon L class lens....yah think? it costs 1/3 as much, it likely aint gonna be the same quality.....but you can take some great photos with it if it is decent glass....granted you rarely hear someone complain that they spent the extra $$ and bought better glass..

    as far as the body, havent messed with that one but a quick look online shows it should do most anything yah want.....its got all the manual settings....

    BTW on a 2 meg card with a 10MP camera you can get a several hundred photos on it if your not shooting raw.....a couple 4 or 8 gig cards are generally better than one huge one.....never know when your gonna misplace one, best to have an extra....most the photos you take will not be 15 megs......most i take with the 10MP wind up 5 megs and under due to the settings i use...
    cervid serial killer
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  3. #3
    BigBella's Avatar
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    I am on the Nikon end of things but -- in any case -- I would recommend a set focal length macro lens of some sort -- something in the 60mm range (Canon or Tamron); the altered DX format will make it the equivalent of, say, a 90mm lens with that added magnification. Not only are they fast-focusing, intended for tiny subjects; but they are also great for portraits . . .
    “Sì perché l'autorità dell'opinione di mille nelle scienze non val per una scintilla di ragione di un solo . . ."

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  4. #4
    RL7836's Avatar
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    In general, I have only heard good things about the rebel cameras - both from reviews & friends who have them. Also, buying a system from a company who is unlikely to obsolete the lenses is a good approach (all of my old lenses are toast because Olympus changed their 'standard'.)

    Quote Originally Posted by Crissytal View Post
    I have selected a step ring to convert the filters to work with the zoom lens (macro is 55mm, zoom lens is 67mm) so I will not have to purchase two lens kits. The 55mm kit is the cheaper of the two, that is why I went with 55mm.
    Doesn't getting the smaller filters leave you with the risk that they will truncate the edges of your pictures (or hinder the light entering the lense) when using the zoom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Crissytal View Post
    I have selected an extra battery (Canon brand) and am going with a Lowepro Slingshot 200 camera bag.
    A few years ago, I purchased a cheap, non-name brand backup battery for my camera (Olympus P&S) and it became useless after ~1.5 years. Apparently there is some truth to the quality of the imitations / knock-offs...

    .....its got all the manual settings....
    When I was taking pics fairly regularly, one of the manual buttons that got used a lot was the depth-of-field preview. Depending on the particular photo composition, sometimes I wanted the background blurry & other times I wanted it as sharp as possible. The depth-of-field preview button allowed me to check on this. This is also a feature camera manufacturers cut out of their rigs when they were cutting back on features for the masses (although I don't know if that's true any longer). If you have any intention of doing fairly long, tripod-held exposures, you may want to see if the rig has a mirror-lockup. Having it held up prior to the exposure can reduce vibration. (although I didn't use this much).
    All the best,
    Ron
    You must do the thing you think you cannot do. --- Eleanor Roosevelt

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  5. #5
    Hello, I must be going... Not a Number's Avatar
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    Even though it's beyond your budget if you're going Canon the macro you want is the MP-E 65mm f/2.8 1-5x. That's the lens that Larry has and is the only digital macro with greater than 1x optical magnification (up to 5x).
    Grand Hotel... always the same. People come, people go. Nothing ever happens.

  6. #6
    scottychaos's Avatar
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    Im a "camera nerd" from way back..
    picked up my first SLR at the age of 14 in 1983..
    Was a photo major in college, and have worked in Digital research at Kodak since 1994..
    I have been shooting with a Canon Elan II (film) SLR for ages..but for digital I have only used point and shoot digital cameras..I have used DSLR's at work, but have never owned one myself..

    The time has come for a new camera..my wife and I both have film SLR's (me, the Elan II, her, a film Rebel)
    we both still shoot some film, but mostly digital these days..
    she wants close-up for flowers and bugs in the garden..I want both telephoto and wide angle for railroad photography..with all those "advanced amateur" requirements..

    We are NOT going to get a digital SLR!

    I have done some serious shopping the last few weeks..on-line research and looking at cameras in stores..
    I have come to the conclusion that the Canon SX20:

    http://www.steves-digicams.com/camer...-views-16.html
    (it sells for $350)

    Will do everything a digital SLR will do for us, 99.5% of the time..
    great zoom range, great tele, great wide angle, excellent close-up capabilities built in..
    the lack of interchangable lenses is pretty much a non-issue..
    this camera will do everything we would want from a digital rebel!
    at half the price..

    I can see no real benefit to the DSLR that warrants the extra price..
    and I already have a supply of quality Canon lenses too!
    even so..dont see the need for the DSLR right now..
    just thought I would throw that out there!

    Im probably going to buy the SX20 in the next few weeks..

    Scot

  7. #7
    What is and what should never be Crissytal's Avatar
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    Thanks for the opinions everyone.

    Thanks rattler: I've done hours of reading. When I'm getting something new I can't leave it alone until I'm absolutely sick of research. Unfortunately I can't afford the cost of the 'good' range Canon lenses. It looks like the Tamron's I picked are better quality than the Canons from the same range. I agree, I had to weed through quite a few reviews comparing the $1-2K Canon lenses to the two Tamrons I picked. Of course the $450-580 Tamrons aren't going to be up to that quality. It's frustrating. I had trouble too with comparisons of Canon and Nikon cameras not in the same range. I'm firm on the Canon camera though. I'm going with it. That's true about the cards. Thanks. I'm going to go with one 8gig for now, and get another 8gig later on.

    BB: Tamron has a 60mm f/2.0 lens but it's too new. There's not much on the net about it. I'd rather go with the 90mm f/2.8 that has plenty of information and reviews. I'm not sure what you are getting at regarding a 'fixed lens'? The one I selected for macro is fixed, it's a non-zoom 90mm.

    RL: Thanks for pointing that out. I hadn't thought about the consequences of using a small filter on a large lens. I'll go with the opposite, get a larger filter kit and a ring to step it down to fit the 55mm. That should work better. If not, I can always pick up another kit later on. I found some deals on batteries that are really too good to be true. I found one for around $10. I'd rather spend the $40 and get the Canon brand. With my luck one of the cheapo off-brands would bust and ruin my camera. I'll have to look into it and see if the T1i has the particular options you've mentioned. This is my first SLR, so I really have no idea what I will like and not like feature wise.

    NaN: That is an awesome lens! I remember some very good macro shots from Larry, I didn't know it was that lens. If I could afford it, I'd certainly get it. As it is, I'm at the far end of my budget. It just won't fit.

    Scotty: You could always donate your high end Canon lenses to me since you don't have a need for a SLR right now... No, I want the interchange lenses and more control over settings. Being able to take a photo of a bird in a fairly close tree would be nice. I can't do that with my point and shoots. Most of the time I'll have a photo of a tree and can't find what I was shooting because the bird is too small and soft. I already have a point and shoot Canon A590IS. I love it, I just want something to take better wildlife pictures with. Improved macro will also be a plus, though I have to admit the A590IS does a great job with their add-on 'macro' lens.
    Where do we go when we just don't know,
    And how do we relight the flame when it's cold?
    Why do we dream when our thoughts mean nothing,
    And when will we learn to control?
    --Godsmack

  8. #8
    Lucky Greenhorn Lil Stinkpot's Avatar
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    Slight hijack:

    Scotty, you just found me my new camera. Thanks!!!
    If you shake a rain stick, you get rain. I need a hamata stick.
    My WWWs

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