Ad
Ad
Ad
Pages: « 1 [2] 3 »   Bottom of Page
Print
Author Topic: Please Advise  (Read 7555 times)
Craig Arnold
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 219


WWW
« Reply #20 on: March 29, 2009, 02:53:39 AM »
ReplyReply

In general the kit lenses are excellent value.

The Nikon 18-135 that comes with the D90 is very good.

For comprehensive lens reviews start first with:

http://www.slrgear.com

Then look at:

http://www.photozone.de

Then the more specialized sites.
Logged

Plekto
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 551


« Reply #21 on: March 29, 2009, 05:41:14 AM »
ReplyReply

I know it's not going to be in vogue or seen as correct by many, but my experience in learning to use a camera back in the 70s and 80s was something that I can't replicate with today's technology.  Now, that is to say, that it's not just about technology being different.  It is.  But it's also about the basics.  Light, optics, a box, media, and so on.  As such I can manage to shoot any sort of camera or video type device fairly well.

There are two approaches to photography, IMO. Professional and Artist.  One does it for a daily living and the other is looking for a life-long hobby.   Technology and tools differ greatly for both.  A DSLR might seem the way to go, but I'll recommend taking the "Prime lens - keep it simple" approach one step further and say that you should get a (manual) film camera.

These are everywhere and people are literally throwing them away.  But what you can learn on an old SLR, for instance, is something that DSLRs just don't do.  My first SLR was a Minolta with one 28mm lens.  And I made due with it for nearly two years, taking pictures of everything and anything that I could.    Digital cameras do so much for you now, which is nice, but they also rob you of tools like knowing and being able to see why things are the way that they are.  For instance, how to manually tweak the exposure - and to be able to tell when it's going to need it.  Sure, the DSLR does it for you to a point, but the skills are still necessary, IMO, or at the least, worth learning.  

It also is good to have to manually focus, because 90% of the time my DSLR was doing it slightly wrong - it would either focus where I didn't want it or the depth of field was all over the place because it thought it knew better.  If I didn't have experience doing it manually, I'd not have known, though, to nudge it a bit, and then probably have wondered why the shots were so-so, most likely.  It took me just as much time per shot, if not longer, with an auto-focus DSLR as it did with my manual focus camera.  It certainly wasn't "point and shoot" easy.  

*note - this doesn't mean a manual focus camera should be manual aperture or speed or not have a proper electronic viewfinder to aid you.   I'm not recommending a rangefinder camera, after all - heh)

It didn't enforce good habits, either.  It's too easy to shoot and shoot and shoot and then delete the junk ones instead of developing skills to get it right the first time.  Now, most of this is patience, but some it also is that with film, there's no second chance.  It ingrains a proper "get it right the first time" method of shooting that I see lacking lately.

And they are really complex.  Having a shutter speed, aperture, and a couple of program modes and that's it was more than enough for me as a beginner back then.  The 20+ buttons and menus on most of these new models kind of gives me a headache and I'm an actual gear-head who does computer work for a living.  Sure, I can understand it.  But why should I have to read a 200+ page manual to do so?  There's something to be said about simplicity as well.  (not even getting into computer software, either)  I can't imagine having the patience to learn it all if I was just starting out now.

Would I recommend it to someone who was doing it as a career?  Of *course* not.  But a DSLR plus software, printer, and lenses and all of that can easily run into 2-3K.   Learning to use a $50  35mm camera you get at an estate sale is a lot of shooting to reach that price range.  And for the person with a tight budget every week, it's about the only practical approach.

Get a cheap camera.  Stick some film in it.  Start shooting.

EDIT:
http://www.adorama.com/VVV3800.html
They still make this type of camera new, in fact.  This comes with a 28-70mm lens as well.  With these prices new, there are tons of them for about half this price used that are like new or only a year or two old.  They are popular with photography classes at most colleges - cheap, simple, and often sold when the person graduates.

ebay item # 220386113650 is a good example of the low prices.   (looks like a 50mm lens though...)  Despite the low price, it's mechanically as solid as a rock.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/5982..._Autofocus.html
This is a good film camera just with auto focus(body only) - Again, easy to find used models all over the place.  IT has all the aperture, shutter, and other modes, though, so it might be a better option.  My original Minolta was similar - just without the auto focusing.  These also are popular with photography classes, so many models can be found like new for under $100.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2009, 06:13:24 AM by Plekto » Logged
MR.FEESH
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 132



WWW
« Reply #22 on: March 29, 2009, 08:04:16 AM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: Plekto
I know it's not going to be in vogue or seen as correct by many, but my experience in learning to use a camera back in the 70s and 80s was something that I can't replicate with today's technology.  Now, that is to say, that it's not just about technology being different.  It is.  But it's also about the basics.  Light, optics, a box, media, and so on.  As such I can manage to shoot any sort of camera or video type device fairly well.

There are two approaches to photography, IMO. Professional and Artist.  One does it for a daily living and the other is looking for a life-long hobby.   Technology and tools differ greatly for both.  A DSLR might seem the way to go, but I'll recommend taking the "Prime lens - keep it simple" approach one step further and say that you should get a (manual) film camera.

These are everywhere and people are literally throwing them away.  But what you can learn on an old SLR, for instance, is something that DSLRs just don't do.  My first SLR was a Minolta with one 28mm lens.  And I made due with it for nearly two years, taking pictures of everything and anything that I could.    Digital cameras do so much for you now, which is nice, but they also rob you of tools like knowing and being able to see why things are the way that they are.  For instance, how to manually tweak the exposure - and to be able to tell when it's going to need it.  Sure, the DSLR does it for you to a point, but the skills are still necessary, IMO, or at the least, worth learning.  

It also is good to have to manually focus, because 90% of the time my DSLR was doing it slightly wrong - it would either focus where I didn't want it or the depth of field was all over the place because it thought it knew better.  If I didn't have experience doing it manually, I'd not have known, though, to nudge it a bit, and then probably have wondered why the shots were so-so, most likely.  It took me just as much time per shot, if not longer, with an auto-focus DSLR as it did with my manual focus camera.  It certainly wasn't "point and shoot" easy.  

*note - this doesn't mean a manual focus camera should be manual aperture or speed or not have a proper electronic viewfinder to aid you.   I'm not recommending a rangefinder camera, after all - heh)

It didn't enforce good habits, either.  It's too easy to shoot and shoot and shoot and then delete the junk ones instead of developing skills to get it right the first time.  Now, most of this is patience, but some it also is that with film, there's no second chance.  It ingrains a proper "get it right the first time" method of shooting that I see lacking lately.

And they are really complex.  Having a shutter speed, aperture, and a couple of program modes and that's it was more than enough for me as a beginner back then.  The 20+ buttons and menus on most of these new models kind of gives me a headache and I'm an actual gear-head who does computer work for a living.  Sure, I can understand it.  But why should I have to read a 200+ page manual to do so?  There's something to be said about simplicity as well.  (not even getting into computer software, either)  I can't imagine having the patience to learn it all if I was just starting out now.

Would I recommend it to someone who was doing it as a career?  Of *course* not.  But a DSLR plus software, printer, and lenses and all of that can easily run into 2-3K.   Learning to use a $50  35mm camera you get at an estate sale is a lot of shooting to reach that price range.  And for the person with a tight budget every week, it's about the only practical approach.

Get a cheap camera.  Stick some film in it.  Start shooting.

EDIT:
http://www.adorama.com/VVV3800.html
They still make this type of camera new, in fact.  This comes with a 28-70mm lens as well.  With these prices new, there are tons of them for about half this price used that are like new or only a year or two old.  They are popular with photography classes at most colleges - cheap, simple, and often sold when the person graduates.

ebay item # 220386113650 is a good example of the low prices.   (looks like a 50mm lens though...)  Despite the low price, it's mechanically as solid as a rock.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/5982..._Autofocus.html
This is a good film camera just with auto focus(body only) - Again, easy to find used models all over the place.  IT has all the aperture, shutter, and other modes, though, so it might be a better option.  My original Minolta was similar - just without the auto focusing.  These also are popular with photography classes, so many models can be found like new for under $100.




To a very minimal extent, I have done this.  My mom has a film 35mm Minolta which I have explored thoroughly.  I just have to say (it's nothing personal), that the ability to not have film and the ability to delete when you mess up is SO MUCH more worth it to me because I'm on a budget.  I am just a beginner, and let's face it, my pictures are going to look like CRAP for a while-- I simply don't have the time (during college) to be running around developing film.  Witht his being said, I'm not just going to run ramped and leave everything on auto and shoot the crap out of stuff until I get luck with one good shot; my experience with my mom's old film camera leads me to agree with you about manual focus- I know what I am taking a picture of much more so than does the computer in the DSLR.  I probably will get in to film one day, but the allure and prospects of digital photography are too great for a youngster like myself.

Quote from: wolfnowl
All of the major manufacturers - Canon, Nikon, Sony, Olympus, Pentax for example make good cameras and accessories.  Reviews and the like will take you so far, but the first thing you need to do is define a budget.  What kind of money do you have to spend?  You don't have to tell us, but you do need to know for yourself.

I've written this before for others, but here is my suggestion.  With budget in mind, find a local camera store that carries the major brands and go there.  Find a clerk and tell him/ her that you're looking for a DSLR and that you're new to photography.  If he or she takes one camera off the shelf and says, "This is the one for you!", leave.  Say thanks, have a nice day or whatever, but walk out.

Find a clerk who will be willing to invest as much time in you as you need.  Handle different cameras and see how they feel to you.  Since you're starting out you'll be building a system from the ground up and you don't have to buy X camera from Y manufacturer because you already have lenses and accessories for that line.  How do the different cameras fit in your hands?  Do the menus and features make sense?  Is the size right for you?  Are the controls in places that make sense to you?  By the end of the day, whether it takes you 1/2 hour or 2 hours, you'll have sorted it down to two or three cameras that you really like.  Now, take the clerk's business card and go home.  Run through your experience in your mind and see if one of those cameras stood out for you above the others.  This one has this but not that, etc. but THIS one is perfect for me.  Tomorrow go back to the store, find the clerk who served you before and make your purchase.

Mike.


I would like my final result for one lens and one body to be around $1100  Like I said, I'm just a student, unless something big changes in my financial status, I just need a *good* beginner camera and lens that works.  I have already done the 'test them out to see how they feel', the D80 was the winner-- I like how it fit in my hands, I could fly around the menus with ease (hurray for youth/ neural plasticity), and it was in my price range assuming I get like a 300-450 dollar lens.  The first time I ever brought up my interest to any one, they told me to do exactly what you just did, I like the D80-- lenses are so much harder because I'm not going to know how to handle them until the lens is bought and I am shooting.  It's much easier to 'feel' a camera than to 'feel' a lens, which is why I'm having so much trouble and posting here.


Quote from: peripatetic
In general the kit lenses are excellent value.

The Nikon 18-135 that comes with the D90 is very good.

For comprehensive lens reviews start first with:

http://www.slrgear.com

Then look at:

http://www.photozone.de

Then the more specialized sites.


That's some decently good news!  Thanks for the links!




-----------------------------------------------------

Elby
Logged

Sigma SD14 w/ PG-21
Sigma 18-50mm F2.8 DC EX Macro
Sigma 70mm F2.8 DG EX Macro
DarkPenguin
Guest
« Reply #23 on: March 29, 2009, 12:09:35 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: MR.FEESH
I would like my final result for one lens and one body to be around $1100  Like I said, I'm just a student, unless something big changes in my financial status, I just need a *good* beginner camera and lens that works.

All current DSLR's are excellent cameras and the kit lenses are generally just fine.  If you can't get a good image out of them it is you and not the camera.  The biggest problem with most kit lenses is that they aren't particularly bright lenses.  (Which is why people tend to recommend the cheap 50 f1.8's as a lens even though it isn't great on a crop body.)  Other than that any kit off the shelf of best buy should work fine for your purposes.  I wouldn't waste too many brain cells on this.  Pick a combo and start learning it.

And it isn't like you're talking about a huge leap here.  A $300 lens is not a huge jump from a $100 kit lens.  You're going to eventually want to buy better glass even if you get the $300 lens.
Logged
MR.FEESH
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 132



WWW
« Reply #24 on: March 29, 2009, 12:30:37 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: DarkPenguin
All current DSLR's are excellent cameras and the kit lenses are generally just fine.  If you can't get a good image out of them it is you and not the camera.  The biggest problem with most kit lenses is that they aren't particularly bright lenses.  (Which is why people tend to recommend the cheap 50 f1.8's as a lens even though it isn't great on a crop body.)  Other than that any kit off the shelf of best buy should work fine for your purposes.  I wouldn't waste too many brain cells on this.  Pick a combo and start learning it.

And it isn't like you're talking about a huge leap here.  A $300 lens is not a huge jump from a $100 kit lens.  You're going to eventually want to buy better glass even if you get the $300 lens.


Ahh, so much of a relief.  Yeah I was thinking about how hard this process is-- I kinda figure maybe i SHOULD get a kit, just so I learn how to use a lens (what's good and bad, how the whole deal works), and THEN after I decide it's sub-par I'll know exactly what to look for that will give me the pictures I've been trying to get.  I kinda feel like I'm some one trying to pick between Porsche and Ferrari that's never even sat in a car before.  

There's one kit on Adorama that has the D80 with a "7X Zoom Kit with 18-135 f/3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor Lens",  is this a better deal than the stock "18 - 55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR (Vibration Reduction) Zoom-Nikkor Lens"  that is is supposed to come with, yes?  I mean, they're both 'slow' (f/3.5-5.6), but one has a greater mm range, but they're the same price....  .  If I got the kit with the 18-135mm, then I would learn first hand and be able to select a semi-pro/ pro grade lens once I know what the f**k I'm doing.  Does this make sense or...?  

Elby
« Last Edit: March 29, 2009, 12:37:29 PM by MR.FEESH » Logged

Sigma SD14 w/ PG-21
Sigma 18-50mm F2.8 DC EX Macro
Sigma 70mm F2.8 DG EX Macro
marcmccalmont
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1724



« Reply #25 on: March 29, 2009, 12:34:33 PM »
ReplyReply

The digital process is much more efficient with a steeper learning curve and much more to learn. Because all the steps are in front of you, you will learn quicker.
Let me explain;
1. Compose-shoot-verify with histogram-shoot again-zoom in verify focus
2. Download-screen-RAW covert-PS adjustments-review
3. Print-review print-reprint

There are 3 major steps that YOU are in command of and need to master
There are 6 feed back loops to consider if the image is not right, redoing any of the three steps, going back to the beginning from steps 2 or 3 and going back to a previous step from step 2 or 3  these steps are cheaper and quicker in digital. I never really learned photography in the film days with developing and printing being sent out ( I do however respect you masters that did have a darkroom, especially color, and mastered every step)

2 more cents
Marc

PS my first serious DSLR was a 5D / 24-105 and in hindsight I did myself a favor getting "too" good a camera for my needs. When you take a great shot as a beginner the motivation it gives you to press on cannot be measured. I have owned a D80/18-200VR, 450 Xsi 18-200 OS, 5D, 5DII, G9, G10, Mamiya/Phase and unless you cross the threshold with a 5D or D90 you will not cross that magic line. There is both absolute and relative quality one needs to cross the threshold on an absolute basis.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2009, 12:44:07 PM by marcmccalmont » Logged

Marc McCalmont
Lisa Nikodym
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1702



WWW
« Reply #26 on: March 29, 2009, 12:48:03 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote
There's one kit on Adorama that has the D80 with a "7X Zoom Kit with 18-135 f/3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor Lens", is this a better deal than the stock "18 - 55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR (Vibration Reduction) Zoom-Nikkor Lens" that is is supposed to come with, yes? I mean, they're both 'slow' (f/3.5-5.6), but one has a greater mm range, but they're the same price....  . If I got the kit with the 18-135mm, then I would learn first hand and be able to select a semi-pro/ pro grade lens once I know what the f**k I'm doing. Does this make sense or...?

If you're trying to choose between the 18-135 lens and the 18-55 lens, I think you need to consider what you think your typical style of photography is likely to be.  If you are likely to often want a longer zoom reach, the 18-135 will give you that.  However, the 18-55 has vibration reduction, which can be very useful if you're often photographing without a tripod for whatever reason (tripods not allowed where you're photographing, awkward to carry a long way when you're hiking, you just aren't patient enough to set it up every time you want to snap a shot, etc. etc.).  The VR costs something to add to the lens.

Lisa

P.S.  I agree with the decision to get a DSLR instead of a film SLR when you're learning.  Because of the long delay between taking a photo and seeing the final print, it's much harder to learn what you're doing wrong with film.  I was technically really pretty awful with film, and only starting learning about proper exposure once I got instant histograms with my first DSLR.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2009, 12:50:18 PM by nniko » Logged

atassy
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 30


« Reply #27 on: March 29, 2009, 01:05:04 PM »
ReplyReply

now that you're pretty much set on the D80, and from what you've said so far i'd think about these to options:
1. get one of the standard zooms mentioned
2. get a 28mm prime (which will be just a tad wider than a traditional standard lens on your body)

good reasons for the kit zoom have been stated. so why the 28mm prime? you can get a decent quality lens for a fairly low investment. the fixed focal lenght will teach you a lot, as described by others before. and you will be able to experiment and find out how you like to work, before spending more money on other lenses. imho it will teach you a lot more about consciously creating an image than the convenience of the zoom will.
then, make sure you set the D80 to fully manual. a lot of your shots may turn out crap but as you can check them immediately, you'll be learning fast. i believe limiting your options when learning photography actually increases your chances to understand both the technical and creative processes involved.

of course this is just the personal opinion of someone who went trough a rather long learning curve similar to what plekto describes
Logged
DarkPenguin
Guest
« Reply #28 on: March 29, 2009, 01:12:00 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: atassy
imho it will teach you a lot more about consciously creating an image than the convenience of the zoom will.

Well, I wouldn't use a zoom as a continuous thing.  I tend to use them like they have click stops. ( 17, 24, 50, etc.)  Makes it much easier to learn a lens if you use it at a handful of very familiar focal lengths rather than an infinite number.

Edit: Added an 'm'.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2009, 01:12:42 PM by DarkPenguin » Logged
DarkPenguin
Guest
« Reply #29 on: March 29, 2009, 01:16:43 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: MR.FEESH
Ahh, so much of a relief.  Yeah I was thinking about how hard this process is-- I kinda figure maybe i SHOULD get a kit, just so I learn how to use a lens (what's good and bad, how the whole deal works), and THEN after I decide it's sub-par I'll know exactly what to look for that will give me the pictures I've been trying to get.  I kinda feel like I'm some one trying to pick between Porsche and Ferrari that's never even sat in a car before.  

There's one kit on Adorama that has the D80 with a "7X Zoom Kit with 18-135 f/3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor Lens",  is this a better deal than the stock "18 - 55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR (Vibration Reduction) Zoom-Nikkor Lens"  that is is supposed to come with, yes?  I mean, they're both 'slow' (f/3.5-5.6), but one has a greater mm range, but they're the same price....  .  If I got the kit with the 18-135mm, then I would learn first hand and be able to select a semi-pro/ pro grade lens once I know what the f**k I'm doing.  Does this make sense or...?  

Elby
Seems reasonable to me.
Logged
marcmccalmont
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1724



« Reply #30 on: March 29, 2009, 01:46:54 PM »
ReplyReply

Get the D90 you woun't be sorry
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/5804...tal_Camera.html
$1150
Marc

The dust reduction alone is worth the xtra $$$$
« Last Edit: March 29, 2009, 01:50:04 PM by marcmccalmont » Logged

Marc McCalmont
Jonathan Ratzlaff
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 193


« Reply #31 on: March 29, 2009, 02:30:06 PM »
ReplyReply

I second the D90.  Good image quality with minimal loss of functions.  Manual focus/autofocus is a red hearing.  As long as you set up an autofocus camera so that you control the focus points and when the camera focuses, you will be far ahead.  Assign the AF function to the AF/AE lock button and you have a manual autofocus camera.  

Film has its drawbacks.  There is no instant feedback like digital, there is a delay in getting your images back.  If you don't shoot slide film, the print lab makes adjustments so you don't have a good idea what is happening.  Not only that but film and processing costs money.    

A kit lens is a good starting point as long as you don't buy the 18-55.  The image quality will be as good as you will need starting out.  Then if you want better quality look at purchasing a used 50mm 1.8 and other used lenses as your budget will allow.
Logged
Plekto
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 551


« Reply #32 on: March 29, 2009, 04:46:19 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote
To a very minimal extent, I have done this.  My mom has a film 35mm Minolta which I have explored thoroughly.  I just have to say (it's nothing personal), that the ability to not have film and the ability to delete when you mess up is SO MUCH more worth it to me because I'm on a budget.  I am just a beginner, and let's face it, my pictures are going to look like CRAP for a while-- I simply don't have the time (during college) to be running around developing film.  With his being said, I'm not just going to run ramped and leave everything on auto and shoot the crap out of stuff until I get luck with one good shot; my experience with my mom's old film camera leads me to agree with you about manual focus- I know what I am taking a picture of much more so than does the computer in the DSLR.  I probably will get in to film one day, but the allure and prospects of digital photography are too great for a youngster like myself.

My first camera was an old Rollei 6x6 camera.  I shot black and white film.  It was cheap and easy to buy and develop myself.  It's what I still use medium format film(now 6x7) for.  It still looks better than digital.  Color is more of a wash between digital and film now, but black and white is still a little bit better - and who has $20K for a pro digital back B&W setup?

I'd recommend to just get some cheap film and toss that in your mom's old camera for now.  Printing is going to cost 10-30 cents a print at a lab or at home anyways.   Yes, there isn't the feedback you get with a DSLR, but then again, the "feedback" on a tiny screen isn't any good - you have to load the thing in and process the raw files to "see" the actual final result.  I'd call it a wash - it's not like a digital back that's hooked up directly to a computer.

In the meantime, sure, save up for a few months for a decent body while using your mom's camera as a "starter".  That's its role, really.  http://store.ultrafineonline.com/fupronpc1603.html - $40 for 20 rolls.  That should suffice until you get the DSLR money saved up.  Just process it at Costco or whatever is cheapest.  Or just get a bulk pack for $30 or so at Coscto

Quote
I would like my final result for one lens and one body to be around $1100  Like I said, I'm just a student, unless something big changes in my financial status, I just need a *good* beginner camera and lens that works.

*The* deal for a good DSLR with all of the features and good output right now are the Sigmas.  They never really caught on, mostly because Sigma keeps delaying their next real full-frame model/didn't keep up with Nikon and Canon and it was pricey.   As a result, you can find new old stock bodies for very little money.   I had one and it was okay - but it was the lower resolution model, the SD10.  The SD14 is a 4.6MP camera, but they are real pixels(no Bayer pattern).

SD14 - 2640 x 1760 (high mode - the interpolated "super-high" mode looks odd to me)
Bayer pattern conversion is 1.5x real pixels(or 0.66 if converting down to screen/printed pixels): 3960 X 2640 = 10.4MP comparable to a typical DSLR.  It wasn't a great camera compared to its competition when it came out, but as a used value, it's a steal.

The real claim to fame is that while the resolution isn't great, and their low-light performance sucks, the color and clarity is fantastic.  There are no moires and defects in the picture, so it enlarges very well and has a very good "film" look to it.

Ebay Item number: 350184432892.  New, $350(!).  Lenses for it are also usually cheaper as well, since Sigma is the largest "third party" lens maker.    Use it, sell it in a couple of years.  Be out very little money on the trade.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2009, 04:47:31 PM by Plekto » Logged
DarkPenguin
Guest
« Reply #33 on: March 29, 2009, 05:41:33 PM »
ReplyReply

The sigma bodies are junk.  The sensor is their only selling point.

If one is going cheap find a place that has the Oly E-410 2 lens kit in stock.  Last I saw it was under $500.

Logged
Plekto
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 551


« Reply #34 on: March 30, 2009, 12:28:10 AM »
ReplyReply

The consensus online is that the Sigma body, despite the claimed price is no better or worse built than the typical entry level DSLR.  No, it's not a $1500 camera like they tried to market it as, but it *IS* a steal at $350.  It certainly works as well as any of the budget $500-$600 range DSLRs and the output looks better, IMO.

It's kind of like someone asking about a first car - the obvious choice is something domestic because they depreciate and can be found cheaply.  Yes, it's not flashy, but a midsize GM or Ford sedan on closeout is still better than a Yaris.  If we're talking budget 10-12MP DSLRs, new old stock higher end models from a couple of years ago also have to be considered.  For $350, that's a jaw-dropping deal.

P.S. For the original poster's information:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foveon_X3_sensor
If the picture looks a lot like how film works with its various layers, you'd be correct.

A Bayer pattern sensor looks like this, BTW:
http://luminous-landscape.com/forum/index....showtopic=33337
See post #5.

If this looks like a color image in a newspaper under a magnifying glass, you'd also be correct.  They market the "pixels" as real pixels, but real pixels are like in your monitor - full color locations.  A Bayer pattern sensor has to do a lot of software tweaking and blending to get a good image, so the best it can actually do is about 0.66% in each dimension, or about half the actual usable pixels compared to say, your monitor.  Still, with 15-25MP to play around with now, they do make for very good results.  But 15-25MP DLSRs tend to cost $1500+, even used.

http://www.ddisoftware.com/sd14-5d/
A review.  Keep in mind that it's being compared a bit unfairly to the 5D, which is 12.7MP.
« Last Edit: March 30, 2009, 12:47:16 AM by Plekto » Logged
brivard
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 12


« Reply #35 on: March 30, 2009, 01:33:14 AM »
ReplyReply

My only advice when buying lenses is go for the fastest one you can afford. Some will argue with the "with todays high ISO" mumbo jumbo... High ISO is great nut you have to have a body that can handle it. The faster the aperture the easier your camera will be to use. That simple. The reason is that having a fast shutter speed at almost any given lightsource is invaluable. I suggest a 50mm 1.4 or 1.8. They are fast and using it and not a zoom will get you to focus on composition not other things like turning your ISO up. A fast aperture will also give you the availability of shooting film (film uses low iso!)
Logged
brivard
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 12


« Reply #36 on: March 30, 2009, 01:51:21 AM »
ReplyReply

Oh and with the money you saved by only spending 100 bucks on a nifty fifty get yourself a used 5d. Full frame is also an invaluable thing later in life, and I doubt there is a more solid camera (has everything you might need). A 5d II is quite an investment for anyone, so a 5d mark 1 is an excellent decision. I started on a crop frame and regret not going full frame. A decent price for a used 5d is about 1300, a little more than you wanted but again well worth the jump.
Logged
marcmccalmont
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1724



« Reply #37 on: March 30, 2009, 12:05:15 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: Plekto
The consensus online is that the Sigma body, despite the claimed price is no better or worse built than the typical entry level DSLR.  No, it's not a $1500 camera like they tried to market it as, but it *IS* a steal at $350.  It certainly works as well as any of the budget $500-$600 range DSLRs and the output looks better, IMO.

It's kind of like someone asking about a first car - the obvious choice is something domestic because they depreciate and can be found cheaply.  Yes, it's not flashy, but a midsize GM or Ford sedan on closeout is still better than a Yaris.  If we're talking budget 10-12MP DSLRs, new old stock higher end models from a couple of years ago also have to be considered.  For $350, that's a jaw-dropping deal.

P.S. For the original poster's information:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foveon_X3_sensor
If the picture looks a lot like how film works with its various layers, you'd be correct.

A Bayer pattern sensor looks like this, BTW:
http://luminous-landscape.com/forum/index....showtopic=33337
See post #5.

If this looks like a color image in a newspaper under a magnifying glass, you'd also be correct.  They market the "pixels" as real pixels, but real pixels are like in your monitor - full color locations.  A Bayer pattern sensor has to do a lot of software tweaking and blending to get a good image, so the best it can actually do is about 0.66% in each dimension, or about half the actual usable pixels compared to say, your monitor.  Still, with 15-25MP to play around with now, they do make for very good results.  But 15-25MP DLSRs tend to cost $1500+, even used.

http://www.ddisoftware.com/sd14-5d/
A review.  Keep in mind that it's being compared a bit unfairly to the 5D, which is 12.7MP.

Remember the human eye is  not layered but rather individual red, green, blue cones and 6 B&W rods mapped into one  nerve. One could argue that a bayer pattern is more like human sight than layered film or Foveon and thus more natural looking (more like you see, less like film see's, film was a compromise due to the chemical technology of the time, yes over a hundresd years to mature but not the ultimate way to record visual light)
Just another point of view
Marc
PS I know your in love with film, nothing wrong with that, it reminds me of when I was designing/building high end loudspeakers there were both camps vinyl was the best or digital was the best. I had both a very good analog front end and digital front end, with a good recording no one could tell them apart. The truth was from a technical point of view vinyl had better high frequecy performance (most significant bit) and digital had better low frequency performance (least significant bit) but in practice $4000 spent on either front end resulted in identically perceived playback.
« Last Edit: March 30, 2009, 12:47:58 PM by marcmccalmont » Logged

Marc McCalmont
Plekto
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 551


« Reply #38 on: March 30, 2009, 01:57:48 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote
Remember the human eye is  not layered but rather individual red, green, blue cones and 6 B&W rods mapped into one  nerve. One could argue that a Bayer pattern is more like human sight than layered film or Foveon and thus more natural looking (more like you see, less like film sees, film was a compromise due to the chemical technology of the time, yes over a hundred years to mature but not the ultimate way to record visual light)
Just another point of view
But this is a problem, really.  Because moire and moire multiplies and causes us to be more preceptive of artifacts and problems in the image.  When part of an image is blurry and part is clean due to interpolation and noise reduction errors that vary for each primary color in the grid, I personally find that it bothers me.  The only way to deal with this is to either disable it/not have it (which is why digital backs look better to most people), or have different geometry(Fuji or Sigma) or make the dots so tiny that it exceeds our ability to notice(ie - a typical 20-25MP camera)

If it weren't so expensive, the Fuji S5Pro(Nikon mount) would be another good choice.  The results are very pleasing and life-like.  Not just the high DR but also way it handles moires and typical pattern sensor issues. But At $900+ new, though, it's just not the best deal for the money.  But I'd certainly chose the S5 over the D5.  I like to think of it like a Mercedes - if you have the cash, go for it.  If you don't just buy the nearly identical and much cheaper Lexus.

Quote
PS I know your in love with film, nothing wrong with that, it reminds me of when I was designing/building high end loudspeakers there were both camps vinyl was the best or digital was the best. I had both a very good analog front end and digital front end, with a good recording no one could tell them apart. The truth was from a technical point of view vinyl had better high frequency performance (most significant bit) and digital had better low frequency performance (least significant bit) but in practice $4000 spent on either front end resulted in identically perceived playback.

I find it to be not quite that simple, though, because vinyl always was a kludge compared to better analog recording methods - maybe more like comparing tubes and transistors.  For specific uses, each is better than the other.  Absolute quality of sound goes to a proper tube amplifier, but you have cost and work flow issues(heavy, hard to tweak to get the bias set up right, requires filtered or regulated power, is fragile, and can't go really loud with most speakers.    The transistor gives you 80-90% the quality and is a simple brick you plug in.  Beat on it, abuse it, and it still works.  Since most people's ears are like their eyes and degrade after age 20-30, that 10-20% difference blurs.

Film *is* better than digital.  But it's also tons more expensive if you do it in volume, slower, requires more fiddling and tweaking(or sending out to a specialized lab if you don't develop yourself), and also requires scanning and so on.  It's essentially unusable for anything you'd make a living doing other than maybe large format scenery or glamour shots and the like.  But like the guy with a tube amplifier, a person who is only interested in it as a hobby or as an artistic form can still be well served by film.

In any case, the original poster has used his mother's old film camera for a while and so has passed the initial "hurdle" somewhat.  If he wants to move to digital, sure - go ahead.  Just it's easy to spend a lot more than you have to.  Recommending a $1200 5D isn't necessarily the right thing to do when a $350-$500 basic DSLR will more than suffice.  He's not going to see the difference between 8, 10, or 12MP.  He's not going to spend $3K on lenses.  He's not going to use half of the modes or special features, either.  So there's no need to go overkill.  I'd have recommended a Digital Rebel in fact, normally.   Cheap, simple, and works.

I recommended the Sigma because it's a killer deal at $350.  That leaves a lot of money for a truly good lens and still be well under $600($250 for a good prime or compact zoom should suffice).
« Last Edit: March 30, 2009, 02:09:42 PM by Plekto » Logged
marcmccalmont
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1724



« Reply #39 on: March 30, 2009, 02:17:31 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: Plekto
But this is a problem, really.  Because moire and moire multiplies and causes us to be more preceptive of artifacts and problems in the image.  When part of an image is blurry and part is clean due to interpolation and noise reduction errors that vary for each primary color in the grid, I personally find that it bothers me.  The only way to deal with this is to either disable it/not have it (which is why digital backs look better to most people), or have different geometry(Fuji or Sigma) or make the dots so tiny that it exceeds our ability to notice(ie - a typical 20-25MP camera)

If it weren't so expensive, the Fuji S5Pro(Nikon mount) would be another good choice.  The results are very pleasing and life-like.  Not just the high DR but also way it handles moires and typical pattern sensor issues. But At $900+ new, though, it's just not the best deal for the money.  But I'd certainly chose the S5 over the D5.  I like to think of it like a Mercedes - if you have the cash, go for it.  If you don't just buy the nearly identical and much cheaper Lexus.



I find it to be not quite that simple, though, because vinyl always was a kludge compared to better analog recording methods - maybe more like comparing tubes and transistors.  For specific uses, each is better than the other.  Absolute quality of sound goes to a proper tube amplifier, but you have cost and work flow issues(heavy, hard to tweak to get the bias set up right, requires filtered or regulated power, is fragile, and can't go really loud with most speakers.    The transistor gives you 80-90% the quality and is a simple brick you plug in.  Beat on it, abuse it, and it still works.  Since most people's ears are like their eyes and degrade after age 20-30, that 10-20% difference blurs.

Film *is* better than digital.  But it's also tons more expensive if you do it in volume, slower, requires more fiddling and tweaking(or sending out to a specialized lab if you don't develop yourself), and also requires scanning and so on.  It's essentially unusable for anything you'd make a living doing other than maybe large format scenery or glamour shots and the like.  But like the guy with a tube amplifier, a person who is only interested in it as a hobby or as an artistic form can still be well served by film.

In any case, the original poster has used his mother's old film camera for a while and so has passed the initial "hurdle" somewhat.  If he wants to move to digital, sure - go ahead.  Just it's easy to spend a lot more than you have to.  Recommending a $1200 5D isn't necessarily the right thing to do when a $350-$500 basic DSLR will more than suffice.  He's not going to see the difference between 8, 10, or 12MP.  He's not going to spend $3K on lenses.  He's not going to use half of the modes or special features, either.  So there's no need to go overkill.  I'd have recommended a Digital Rebel in fact, normally.   Cheap, simple, and works.

I recommended the Sigma because it's a killer deal at $350.  That leaves a lot of money for a truly good lens and still be well under $600($250 for a good prime or compact zoom should suffice).

We should take this discussion off line it's too far off the original posters question but good transistors (like Boulder/ATC etc ) and good digital capture (like Phase/Nikon/Canon) *is* the best!
Marc
Marc
Logged

Marc McCalmont
Pages: « 1 [2] 3 »   Top of Page
Print
Jump to:  

Ad
Ad
Ad