Ok question for the camera buffs..

Re: Ok question for the camera buffs..

PostBy: traderfjp On: Fri Jan 11, 2008 8:13 am

I have a photography background and own a Nikon D80 with a Nikkor - 18-200vr, a 50mm 1.5f and a Tamron 90mm Macro lens 90mm. The 18-200mm very rarely comes off my camera unless I'm doing macro photography. I think you'll find that it's a pain in the butt to carry around so many lenses and that you miss great shots trying to change lenses. Also, DSLR's are very sensitive to dust and you'll be cleaning your sensor a lot if you aren't careful when you change lenses. Many photographers use multiple lenses that are fixed focal lengths to get the cripiest pictures they can but then again they are looking to get published.
Last edited by traderfjp on Fri Jan 11, 2008 2:43 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Ok question for the camera buffs..

PostBy: av8r On: Fri Jan 11, 2008 11:14 am

mufwapo wrote:I was looking at that 350D you mentioned and I like the idea of a separate flash. All of the cameras I've had before had an integrated flash and were all quite poor in my opinion as I'm often in less than ideal light conditions. I'll have to check this out a little more and see what fits for me. Thank You


If you need a hot shoe there are P&S cams that have that. Unless you have a need to change lenses, don't buy a DSLR. I know too many folks that buy one, then end up not using it because it's too big, too heavy, too expensive to buy a decent lens (You'll easily spend 3 times the money for glass over what the body costs)

If you're not making a living with it, buy a decent ZLR. Sony R1, Canon S5 IS, Canon G9 are all very good ZLR cams which many feel are a good fit. They all have a hot shoe so you can add a flash.

Here's some data on the DSLR vs ZLR units:

DSLR cons: size, weight, cost, dust sensitivity, no electronic swivel
viewfinder (how does that affect macro?), no movies.

Pros: image quality, low-light operation, DoF preview, can keep lenses
when changing body.

The capabilities are largely determined by the depth of your pocket and
the lenses you buy. Something like a DSLR of the S2 IS costs 4 times as
much and is a lot heavier.

BTW..the dust thing isn't really an issue. I've had 6 DSLR bodies, shot hundreds of thousands of pics and I've never cleaned a sensor filter ever. None of the local guys that shoot pro have either. Never had a dust speck show up on a pic. I shoot primarily outdoors (airshows, air to air, aerial stuff) portraits, that kind of thing. There are some very anal people that will try to convince you that you need to clean the sensor filter often...don't buy it. Shut the camera off before you change lenses and always hold the body with the mount pointing down when there isn't a lens or cap on the camera. Just like we were taught to do with film cameras... I bought all the crap to clean mine and it's all new in the package.
Having said that, I do have plenty of friends who feel compelled to clean, clean, clean....some have had to send the camera to service because of this.
Your money, your needs, your choice.
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Re: Ok question for the camera buffs..

PostBy: traderfjp On: Fri Jan 11, 2008 2:53 pm

I don't advocate cleaning the sensor unless you have no choice. I took several pics a while ago with sky in the upper part of the picture and I could see the specs of dust. Dust is also prevalent in macro photography. In most scenes and with fast shutters dust specs usually don't show up. The real advantage of a DSLR is speed. I can take several pics a second which I could never do with a P&S. Also, you can shoot in lower light with much better results, you'll get a better built in flash, more options and you'll take pics that are of amazing quality even with a mid priced lens. Smaller cameras have size on their side.
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Re: Ok question for the camera buffs..

PostBy: av8r On: Fri Jan 11, 2008 5:50 pm

traderfjp wrote: Also, you can shoot in lower light with much better results

What you *may* get is less noise at high ISO. Most folks shoot auto, so this doesn't come into play at all.

you'll take pics that are of amazing quality even with a mid priced lens


Sorry, Trader. This one is like saying if I had that Stradavarius, I'd play Carnegie Hall. While the camera can add something to the mix, the shooter is 90% of this, especially with today's P&S cameras.
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Re: Ok question for the camera buffs..

PostBy: europachris On: Fri Jan 11, 2008 5:58 pm

av8r wrote:
Sorry, Trader. This one is like saying if I had that Stradavarius, I'd play Carnegie Hall. While the camera can add something to the mix, the shooter is 90% of this, especially with today's P&S cameras.


Ain't that the truth. My old high school band instructor once quipped: "It ain't the axe that makes the cat, but the cat behind the axe". That is to say that if I bought myself a $10,000 custom guitar, I'd still play for sh!t, but a pro player can take a $400 guitar and sound amazing.

There does, however, come into play the point of diminishing returns and/or quality on the low end. Nobody is going to take pictures with a really junk camera or play music with a junk guitar. But, there's a point where you get the most value/peformance ratio.
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Re: Ok question for the camera buffs..

PostBy: traderfjp On: Fri Jan 11, 2008 8:34 pm

Don't be sorry we are all entitled to our opinions. I've had many P&S cameras and a my current Nikon DSLR takes better quality pictures then the top of the line P&S Nikon and Canon cameras I had. You can get a complete setup for about 1500.00 while a good P&S is about 400.00 so I don't think it's fair to compare a 400 guitar with a 10,000 guitar because the price difference is not that great. A DSLR is not going to make you into Ansel Adams or improve your composition skills. However, what you're getting with a DSLR is a larger sensor, better optics for the most part and a camera that can take pictures as fast as you can press the shutter. The quality of your pictures will be improved, however if you only print 4 x 6 enlargements then you probably will not see a huge difference. A DSLR is a must for taking pics for sports and kids because of the speed. Also, If you're going to shoot on automatic then you're not a real photographer but a person who takes snap shots and if that is the case then P&S is they way to go and there is nothing wrong with that. However, it is nonsense to suggest that camera noise doesn't come into play when shooting on automatic. If there isn't enough light and the camera has to select a higher iso then on most smaller sensor cameras the pictures become unusable after 400 iso while I can shoot at 800 and above with little noise. That is why full format sensor cameras cost so much. I've owned many cameras and have been praised for my photographs by all that see my work and I can tell you that buying a DSLR allowed me to take my photography to the next step. The only real downside is that the camera I own is large but I have a camera strap that is super comfortable with some stretch so it really isn't an issue for me. If you talk to my wife she will readily admit that my camera takes better pictures then her Canon P&S but she is not interested in Macro photography or getting the best quality - her goal is to own a compact camera that takes good pictures. The bottom line is that each camera has its own list of strenghts and weaknesses and you have to decide what is important to you and what your budget will allow.

Here is a link to my portfolio. http://www.zenfolio.com/traderfjp
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Re: Ok question for the camera buffs..

PostBy: europachris On: Fri Jan 11, 2008 9:18 pm

traderfjp wrote:Here is a link to my portfolio. http://www.zenfolio.com/traderfjp


VERY nice work! You certainly make use of the level of camera you have. And that is really my original point, even though my guitar example was exaggerated - if you have the skills to use a high performance camera, then by all means use one. There is absolutely no doubt that a DSLR with a full size image sensor, etc. will be far far superior to any P&S. I ordered a Panasonic Lumix FZ8K (hope to get it tomorrow), which is a 'super zoom' P&S. I really wanted something like a Rebel XTi, but I cannot justify it as really I'm just a snapshot taker, even though I understand all about ISO, aperture, shutter speed, etc. One day I'll move up to the next level, but somehow I always enjoy seeing the work of others rather than my own.......

Keep up the nice work!
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Re: Ok question for the camera buffs..

PostBy: traderfjp On: Fri Jan 11, 2008 9:26 pm

I think you'll like the Panasonic camera you ordered. It's a step up from a P&S camera. Enjoy!
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Re: Ok question for the camera buffs..

PostBy: Ed.A On: Sat Jan 12, 2008 1:03 pm

Trader, you do nice work.
I've a Lumix DMC-FZ20, bought it back in '05 and love it. Did buco research and decided for what I need it was prolly a bit higher level than I am qualified for. Snapshooter only :)
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Re: Ok question for the camera buffs..

PostBy: traderfjp On: Sat Jan 12, 2008 2:01 pm

Thanks for all the kinds words on my photos. The Lumix line of cameras is always highly rated. If I didn't buy a DSLR I probably would have bought the Panasonic. I had the top of the line Nikon Ultra zoom which is similar to the Lumix and I really loved it except that to take RAW pics or even JPGs on fine there was a several second lag between pics. It was painfully slow but it was a decent performer for macro and landscape photography. If it was as fast as my DSLR I probably would have kept it. The optics opn that camera were impressive.
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Re: Ok question for the camera buffs..

PostBy: europachris On: Sun Jan 13, 2008 9:48 am

Just got the Lumix last night. It was sitting at my doorstep courtesy of the USPS.

I've only fiddled with it briefly after charging up the battery last night, but so far I'm VERY impressed. I can't believe you can get that much camera for $240. Total with case, extra batt., memory card was about $300. Not bad....

I also just got a new color printer as my 6 year old Canon S750 died last week. 6 years with no issues and the same set of ink tanks! I just used the refill kits. Only bugger is that I JUST replaced the print head a month or two ago as it finally gave out, and now the printer died. That was $45 down the hole. Somehow the printhead cleaning mechanism gave out and jammed up. I took it apart and couldn't see anything obvious or repairable, so it was dumpster bait. Now I have a Pixma iP4500. Haven't used it yet, need to go get a USB cable to hook it up.
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Re: Ok question for the camera buffs..

PostBy: traderfjp On: Sun Jan 13, 2008 6:13 pm

240.00 is dirt cheap. Congrats!! Post some pics when you get a chance. Was that there latest camera or an older model?
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Re: Ok question for the camera buffs..

PostBy: av8r On: Sun Jan 13, 2008 6:21 pm

europachris wrote:Just got the Lumix last night. It was sitting at my doorstep courtesy of the USPS.

I've only fiddled with it briefly after charging up the battery last night, but so far I'm VERY impressed. I can't believe you can get that much camera for $240. Total with case, extra batt., memory card was about $300. Not bad....

I also just got a new color printer as my 6 year old Canon S750 died last week. 6 years with no issues and the same set of ink tanks! I just used the refill kits. Only bugger is that I JUST replaced the print head a month or two ago as it finally gave out, and now the printer died. That was $45 down the hole. Somehow the printhead cleaning mechanism gave out and jammed up. I took it apart and couldn't see anything obvious or repairable, so it was dumpster bait. Now I have a Pixma iP4500. Haven't used it yet, need to go get a USB cable to hook it up.


You'll love the Lumix. You'll also love the Pixma. Buy good paper..very important. When I print myself (not very often) I use branded paper or the stuff from this guy Really good quality paper.

You'd have to try hard to buy a "bad" digicam these days.
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Re: Ok question for the camera buffs..

PostBy: europachris On: Sun Jan 13, 2008 8:26 pm

traderfjp wrote:240.00 is dirt cheap. Congrats!! Post some pics when you get a chance. Was that there latest camera or an older model?


It's the latest 'super-zoom' model from Panasonic. Got it for $238 from Amazon, it's $298 at Wal-Mart! That $60 savings bought an extra battery, case, and memory sticks! It has a bewildering array of options and settings, and really seems to be very capable. So far the picture quality seems quite excellent. I'll post some pics and also compare it to our old Sony - it will be interesting to see how the current tech compares with 6 year old tech.

The iP4500 printer was $104 at NewEgg.com. Another amazing deal.
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Re: Ok question for the camera buffs..

PostBy: traderfjp On: Sun Jan 13, 2008 8:42 pm

On the highest JPG setting what is the lag between pics. Just curious. Thanks
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