I am looking into the Canon Rebel EOS T3i on my price range and can find sales. Thanks to everyone who responded...Like I said before I like basic proven things and to be honest I want no possessions that I cannot easily replace if broken or stolen especially camping and living like a gypsy in my airstream. I do not believe in insurance and mostly life to short to worry about possessions...they are all lost in the end.
$500 paid for my Canon T3. I was pretty overwhelmed like you and decided to go with Cameralabs' reviews. I don't have high demands on a camera though. I just wanted to try out a DSLR, and have something that took decent video. No squealing sounds on the video - woo!
But the kit lens isn't fantastic. The macro is pretty lousy compared to my point and shoot.
i have a Canon Rebel EOS T3, which you can pick up with an 18-55mm lens kit for $429 on amazon. i got it in 2011 and have no complaints so far. it is the most basic of DSLR's but can still produce quality shots. anyway, it's in your price range cos an SD card and other basic bits and pieces will use of the rest of your $
It really depends on what you are after, especially with that kind of a budget. So let me ask a few questions; what kind of photography are you looking to do? Are you after becoming a professional and doing this for a living? Is this just a hobby you enjoy? Are you dead set on a DSLR, or willing to consider a different format of digital camera? Are you ok with used if you want to stick with DSLR?
From a quick look through your gallery, I see you do a lot of nature work. While that would help me pick out a nice lens for you, it really doesn't narrow down the body or even the type. Before you answer, give a quick look at Micro Four Thirds cameras. They are pretty much a step between P&S, and DSLR, and they have interchangeable lenses that can go between brands, and can produce some very nice photographs. I myself am planning on getting one for daily travel and use, so I don't have to lug my DSLR with my everywhere.
So let me ask a few questions; what kind of photography are you looking to do?
Am I the only one who read the OP's post from beginning to end? A short as it was, I can't believe everyone here has said "depends on what you want to shoot". Well, of course. But the OP did write this:
I not a gadget person but want to take good image quality pictures mostly nature. See my picture but would like to expand to more artistic subjects as well.
That pretty much explains it. With a $500 budget the OP is not going to get a FF DSLR camera, so it's DX for sure. I'd suggest Canon since their glass and general equipment is cheaper than Nikon's comparable.
Admitedly, I had rewrote that a few times, and a slightly important line went away that was there at one point. I had said that while being a nature photographer can give me a good idea of the lenses, other than talking about focus speeds and ruggedness for outdoor use of the high end cameras, it means not much in the low end skill they are talking about.
I actually did not only read the post, but also browsed their gallery, and spent time already thinking on it. I once again admit the question was not really needed, but its an automatic set of questions when talking about new camera bodies/lenses/etc. I was more after what exactly they plan on doing with the finished photos, are they looking to turn pro, sell prints, and also should have added in are they wanting to get into other types of photography as well.
No, unless you want to buy a rock with a hole in the front.
I suggest saving up. Your Olympus is a good hobbyists camera, don't dive into trying to imitate what your brain does with your eyes without a clue as to what your doing. And no real cash to invest.
You wouldn't go to have a circumcision at your neighbours with butter knife, having the training of making sandwiches.
This photography thang is a strict science, Understand before buying a camera what this is all about:
DOF/ F-Stop ISO APERTURE SHUTTER SPEED SENSOR TYPES TO CROP OR NOT BACKGROUND KIT (LIGHTING, BACKING, REFLECTORS ETC) SOFTWARE (PURCHASED OTHER WISE THE COMPANIES CAN AND WILL F-NUMBER YOU IN THE APERTURE SIZE) What each effects and how they affect each other. And which you will need for your style of shooting, and the subject you wish to specialise in if any.
Then you can look at which cameras offer the best practical application to your style of photography...
But even then you can't buy because you need to do a test run on each brand to see your preference. Don't just buy into a brand for the adverts, each model has a different weight and feel, the options are in different placements and set ups. You need to be able to recognise each mode of shooting, and what they mean to you. Test run them, ask to rent a body and a lens trial them properly take the same planned shots with each and then make your mind up.
Before I even bought my camera I knew what I was going to shoot, how much to charge, what lenses to invest in, what kit, what software, what settings I would need, how to pre-set everything and create dynamic range.
I don't shoot wild life and I don't own a macro lens, but I got this... [link]
Because docking your lens back to front allows for macro shooting and 18-135mm allows you to zoom when reverse docked. I knew about Magic lantern before I bought my 60D so I could release the shutter lock. Investment for macro photography of an inverted 18-135mm lens was the cost of the reverse ring, maybe 10-20 bucks american The cost of the Equivalent macro lens is oh lawdy about 1000-2000grand.
Burning that much money on something you know f/a about is an exercise in stupidity at best because as you can see the need to spend when you know what your doing is always minimised.
Why spend any money at all when the only thing you understand about shooting is the settings of a commercial compact?
Either way your going to be spending more than pocket change and you will need insurance when the time comes and you have to be prepared to shell out, and be even more prepared to see your partner roll their eyes at you, and even then you need to be able to understand the thing to get the most out of it.
That's just my professional opinion.
The camera you have is a versatile camera, you can experiment and not have to worry about any settings in camera, use that, save up and do some home work before you buy, because sales people will give you an inferior product to up sell old stock and or packages and make them look great until you actually go to use the crap you bought.
Basically there is no strict recommendation I can make only that in this game a lot of arty types will say it's the person behind the camera that does the work. But actually with so many models designed for different uses for example being a sports tog without a combi rapid-fire - high ISO camera is a kin to breaking your wrist and trying to get a good shot.
With so many lenses that have better clarity and speed, with so many steadying tripods with Ball and socket joints, counter weights, and even gyroscopes, it's actually a case of both, you need to know how to utilise them to the best of their ability but each cheap piece of kit has a limit.
Whatever you decide to do just understand that the potential of your current set up is vast and that your looking for a better level to improve you. But actually you need to examine yourself as a tog first because an Olympus T100 in my hands could get me through a wedding no problems.
Would get me though a full day, with images that are on par with the Canon EOS Rebel XSi or 1100D But as I said better kit allows greater resolution which means bigger images, But for 8X6's (maximum album prints) at 350dpi (standard print res) the extra pixels are a waste. Put it like this 7 mega pixels is all you need for 8x6 at pro res.
So your Olympus is actually a decent little versatile camera, just get a few proper add ones to get the most out of it, like a good tripod, because when you do upgrade the tripod is there, get a decent fast card for the same reason they should tide you over.
That's just my personal opinion, based on 9 years of doing this for cash, you can do what ever the F**k you want to do.
And as someone who says they have been at it this long, you should very well know its not just the MP count, but the size of said pixels, quality of the sensor, and of course as even you said, the glass at the front. Did you even look at the camera the person is currently using? And where did talking about reversing a lens for macro even come into it? Seriously, that was one long rant for not much in the way of good information.