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January 2, 2013


Replies: 18

Need advice on buying DS LR

swordedsaint Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013
Basically I have been blessed with an extra $500 dollars or so and want to buy a new DSLR... I am thinking either Canon or Nikon because I want something proven and reliable and 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. I need a starting point on which series or just your opinions...I just get over whelmed by looking online without much real world experience.

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Devious Comments

swordedsaint Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2013
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.
Yellowmelle Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
$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.
Buntcone Featured By Owner Jan 10, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
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 $
JedLin2154 Featured By Owner Jan 9, 2013  Student Filmographer
I recently just got a Canon Rebel EOS T3i and haven't looked back. Other things within budget would probably be a NIKON D5100.
rockTheSky Featured By Owner Jan 9, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
I'd go with Canon. Their lenses are generally 20-30% cheaper than Nikon's comparable.
CoreyEacret Featured By Owner Jan 9, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
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.
rockTheSky Featured By Owner Jan 9, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
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.
CoreyEacret Featured By Owner Jan 10, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
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.
xyloz Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2013
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
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...

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.

Speed 10 memory card 32gb
Olympus T100
External independent light

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. :spyedvsjark:
CoreyEacret Featured By Owner Jan 9, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
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.
xyloz Featured By Owner Jan 9, 2013
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. :spyedvsjark:

What the hell is this garbage the dude has $500.

Did you just read everything out of context and think, hey this guy prefers Happy Snap cameras over DSLR's jump on him and criticize.
Lets discuss the quality of camera he can buy with that $500 bucks, sweet fanny all quality that's without a lens.

As I said on a budget this guy is better off sticking with his camera and saving up.
timestreason Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2013
Canon T3i is the perfect camera to start out with. I used mine for a year and a half before upgrading to a Canon 7D. I do a lot of nature/landscapes, as well as portraiture...loved it for both. I have 4 lenses that I use with it as well, though the standard 18-55mm lens that comes with it should suite your purposes, especially around the 18-35mm range.
hedwards Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013
I'd recommend looking at the type of work you want to do and then looking at the available lenses. Then when you've found a system that works for you, choose a body that works with the system.

I would strongly recommend saving up some more money, $500 isn't a lot and for even $1k you can get something that will last you a lot longer. Also, keep in mind that if you want to buy a Canon, Canon usually has big rebate offers during July, so if you save what money you can until then, you might be able to find something a bit nicer.

With $500, you're going to have a hard time getting decent glass. Pro glass is nice, but if you're just starting out, getting something from Tamron or Sigma may make more sense and be much more affordable for the quality. But, even there the cost will still be more than half of your allowance. Or, if you get a Canon body, the Canon EF 50mm F1.8 AKA "Plastic Fantastic" is quite good, it can be had for probably $70 new and is pretty good optically.
torilsa Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013  Student Photographer
You'll probably get a decent Nikon camera (D3200, D3100) for that price (: I haven't tried them myself, but some of my friends have D3100 and likes it very much.
swordedsaint Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013
thanks...I would like to find someone who has one and tell me firsthand..I definitely know the limitations of my Olympus.
sillyconguru Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013
So you've got $500 to buy a DSLR & lens with...

Basically; $500 isn't a huge amount of money in the DSLR world, so spend your money on whatever kit you like the look of and can afford.
SkankinMike Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013
Sp what's you're $500 extra on top of?
swordedsaint Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013
a pile of monthly bills
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