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Camera advice needed

Discussion in 'Electronic Devices' started by rhuarc3, May 11, 2014.

  1. rhuarc3

    rhuarc3 Loaded Pockets

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    So my wife has been mentioning several dozen times that she wishes we had a nicer camera for taking photos of our 2 boys and rest of family during outings and gatherings, I finally took the hint and have been researching a bit.

    I'll need a good all around quality camera. Will be using to take pictures in daylight and dark. And the boys don't stop moving so needs to be relatively quick.

    Mostly we've been using our iPhones for pictures, which works great for the most part, but not so much when you blow them up to 13" x 19" prints.

    We have a nice canon photo printer I bought a few years ago, and we have an old canon g3 (or g5 I forget which) camera that we were using but the camera phones were taking better video and pictures than it.

    I think I've narrowed it down to 2, canon eos 70D or Nikon d7100. My sister has a canon, so borrowing her lenses is a possibility. But I have none right now so I'd be getting a kit to start with.

    Thanks in advance, folks.


    - Todd
     
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  2. Macguy

    Macguy Loaded Pockets

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    Either of those two cameras will be great. I've shot the D7100 for a little over a year and it has been wonderful. The Canon is equally as nice so you mainly need to decide to go with Canon or Nikon. However, I will throw out another suggestion. There are a lot of cameras made by a variety of manufacturers that are mirrorless. They have roughly the same size sensor as the Nikon and Canon, removable lenses, and are significantly smaller. I just bought a Fuji X-E1 to accompany my Nikon and I must say the image quality of the Fuji surpasses my Nikon in a much smaller package. The Sony NX series is also supposed to be excellent. Good luck with the purchase.
     
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  3. FL Woods Bum
    • In Omnia Paratus

    FL Woods Bum Your Grace!

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    Do not underestimate how big of a benefit this is. Most "consumer" users rarely use anything other than the original lens that comes with their camera. While the standard lens works for the majority of what folks do, you will likely (eventually) want a dedicated macro lens since you HAVE to have great close up pics for EDCF. ;)

    I am not an expert, but I have used both Nikon and Canon DSLRs, I think they are pretty comparable for anything that we (as consumers) will do. Good luck!! We expect some great pics coming soon!!
     
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  4. echo63

    echo63 Loaded Pockets

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    for similar models, the Canon Vs Nikon argument is a bit stupid
    both are good cameras, and when comparing two similar models, you are better off looking at the menu and feel of the camera, and choosing the one that you find easier to use.

    Mirrorless is another good option - Fuji's XT1 and Olympus's OMD-EM1 are supposed to be the best options at the moment.
     
  5. Tornado

    Tornado Loaded Pockets

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    One thing you should also do to check is which grip works better for you. For me Nikon grip feels more natural than Canon grip. Canons grips are the wrong shape and shutter button in wrong place (for me).
     
  6. echo63

    echo63 Loaded Pockets

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    yep, thats what I'm getting at !

    i don't get a choice in my SLR, work supplies them, but the new 1DX feels much nicer than the older 1D bodies.

    the Nikons have always felt better for me, but the button layout does my head in, i much prefer the Canon menus
     
  7. thatsalligot

    thatsalligot Loaded Pockets

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    I'd suggest purchasing a camera kit either Canon or Nikon that you like. Both are good. The kit lens is adequate but eventually you will want to save for "good glass" as they say ;) Any camera stores near you that rent lenses? Optics do play a big role so rent or borrow until you figure what you like and absolutely need. Photography can be a very expensive hobby but probably the best hobby IMHO as it documents your life ;). BTW, I use to sell cameras on the weekends for poops and giggles to fund my expensive hobby.
     
  8. rhuarc3

    rhuarc3 Loaded Pockets

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    Thanks for all the advice so far. I've held my sisters t3i and it was comfortable but I will have to compare to a Nikon. I think her boyfriend has one.

    If i do go with a kit which lens should I get 18-55mm or 18-135mm? Mostly be doing shots of my kids playing or candids during parties. But would eventual like to take shots of my truck. Although I could always get another lens later.

    I'll look into some of the local shops to see if they rent lenses for trial.

    Thanks again for all the info.


    - Todd
     
  9. thatsalligot

    thatsalligot Loaded Pockets

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    The 18-135mm will likely cover 80% of your photography needs especially candids. I would recommend the books by Scott Kelby - The digital photographers boxed set. It's good place to start learning about photography. ;)
     
  10. echo63

    echo63 Loaded Pockets

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    The 18-135 would be the better choice

    "Understanding exposure" by Brian Petersen is a good book too
     
  11. Ironside

    Ironside Loaded Pockets

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    D7100
    I have used a D7000 for over two years and it is a great blend of functions and capabilities for the price.
    The body is tough!
    I got an F 1.8 35mm primary (its equivalent to 52mm as the D7x00 sensors are not full frame) so I can take low light and have bokeh shots plus the excellent 18-200 AFS DX 3.5-5.6 AF VRII. Go up to 200 for sports shots. This camera works great in low light situations.
    I love this camera and use it manually all the time but the presets and auto work great for my wife.
    I got it because like you I wanted to document my kids childhoods. Mostly its all digital viewing but once a year at Christmas we go through everything and archival print about 100 pics. Home printer pics won't last but we print the odd one when necessary.
     
  12. sungame

    sungame Loaded Pockets

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    This is very, very important!

    Both Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Olympus and others make great cameras, and you really need to find the one that is right for you. I am on my second Nikon (A D7000), and I have to say that Canon and I don't get along very well. If you look at the specs, Canon cameras are usually a wee bit better than the Nikon counterpart at the same price point. That doesn't help me one bit though, as I find Canon's menu systems, button layouts etc. awkward and counter-intuitive. That is just my subjective meaning, though. I have good friends - who are also good photographers - who feel the same way about Nikon. Again, it is all about finding out what works for you.


    I beg to differ. As I do not use Canon cameras much, I do not know a whole lot about their lenses. However, as a general rule, I would advice you to choose speed and optical quality over the extra focal length any day, especially for the kind of use you describe. Even when your kids are running around, they will rarely be so far away that you actually need the 135 mm.

    On the other hand, kit zoom lenses that cover a huge span of focal lengths tend to be rather slow (that is, the maximum aperture is rather small, normally somewhere around f 4.5-6), and they tend to have some optical imperfections like barreling, pillowing, darkened corners etc., especially in the long end of the zoom. Of course, none of this is critical for an enthusiast, but I personally prefer the ability to shoot in lower light without a flash (especially in "candid" situations) and better optical quality over longer focal length. Also, the combination of being able to use natural light and playing with the depth of field is gold for both portraits and gear photography.

    As mentioned,I do not know all that much about Canon lenses, so I suggest that you read up a bit on the specs of the various kit alternatives, and try to find a review or two.
     
  13. echo63

    echo63 Loaded Pockets

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    The 18-135 and 18-55 are both f4-5.6 i think

    The 50mm f1.8 is a good cheap lens to pick up - both Canon and Nikon have one
    Very cheap due to the build and simplicity of the lens, but very fast and sharp
    The canon is pretty flimsily built though
     
    Last edited by echo63, May 12, 2014
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  14. Mike Keith

    Mike Keith Loaded Pockets

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    As others have mentioned, the compact mirrorless system cameras are worth a look... They're a fraction of the size of an SLR, but have pretty much the same capabilities. If you're mainly going to be using it for family snapshots, a full-sized SLR is really more than you're going to need.

    I have a Canon EOS M, a compact system camera. It lacks a viewfinder or onboard flash, but with an adapter it can use all your sister's existing lenses. Most good quality cameras can now run pretty high ISO settings with minimal picture noise, meaning you can take decent photos even in low light.

    One of the best things you can do when considering cameras is go to a decent camera store that has all the models on display and try them all out.
     
  15. Weko

    Weko Loaded Pockets

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    Both are excellent makes. I personally use A Nikon because it had a feature I wanted. My girlfriend uses a Canon. If I were to buy another DSLR. I would get a Canon because they added the feature I originally bought the Nikon for and they have a slightly larger lens mount thus a slightly larger F stop. I also have a Olympus mirorless compact. Easier to travel with and I bought adapters that allow me to use my Nikon lenses. A Panasonic compact rounds out my collection. Being waterproof, I don't have to be concerned about the weather. As to lenses, I just got a 55 - 300mm that I use for most of my shooting with the DSLR. It fits my style of shooting. The ability to borrow lenses can be a consideration. GFs granddaughter got my old 55-200 when she bought her DSLR.
     
  16. HappyPuppy

    HappyPuppy Loaded Pockets

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    I have moved away from the DSLR to compacts like the Fuji X series, Sony RX series. I have had a couple mirrorless one the Canon m and Sony NEX but I just went compact to carry out more. The DSLR s were just getting too much of a burden

    "It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God that such men lived." -G.S. Patton
     
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  17. Tornado

    Tornado Loaded Pockets

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    Kinda the same thing for me, only I went with Olympus PENs. Big camera and lens combination and huge heavy backpacks started to get on my nerves so I just left them in the closet in favor of lighter cameras. Then one day I sold all slr gear and now I walk about with just my PENs. Next step may well be Fuji's with their cool viewfinder that PENs lack. That would make things even more compact because of external viewfinders I use with the PENs.
     
  18. Schnurri

    Schnurri Loaded Pockets

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    Just my thoughts: are you willing to lug around a heavy DSLR and maybe even be tempted to carry an extra lens or two? I've had a Fuji X-E1 for about two years now and I'm more than happy with it. I got the standard 18-55 Zoom and a 135mm russian legacy lens and it's just plain fun. Next on my list is a 35 or 50mm prime lens which would make the camera incredibly light, yet still offering some excellent photo quality.
    If you really want to get into photography, get a DSLR, but consider mirrorless systems, too. If you mainly want to use the camera for snapshots, get a compact camera like a Panasonic Lumix. Much easier to carry around with and always with you when you need it.
     
  19. sungame

    sungame Loaded Pockets

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    Amen to that!

    The "Nifty Fifties" as they are often affectionately called are great lenses and amazing value for money. They are wonderful portrait lenses, but due to their fixed, longish focal length, they do not make very good all round lenses, at least not with a standard DX format digital camera. Also, the build quality isn't exactly top notch. I own the Nikon (Nikkor) version, and the housing seems to be all plastic. It has a metal mount, though.
     
  20. echo63

    echo63 Loaded Pockets

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    the Canon mount is plastic too - I have destroyed 2 (one was dropped, the other separated when the big 1 series camera it was on tipped forward onto the end of the lens, i now have a 50 f2.5 compact macro) but i tend to use my gear a little harder than most.

    the Mirrorless systems available now are excellent - i was looking at the OMD-EM1 a few months back, and from all i have read, and physically playing with one, its a good choice, I haven't looked at a Fuji XT1 yet, and i had a chat to a Leica Rep and had a play with their new T series camera, which is very nice, but expensive and currently limited in lens choices.