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Digital SLR question


Tonner Cyn
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I'm thinking of getting my wife a DSLP package for Christmas this year. I'm not looking to spend top-of-the-line dollars, but it doesn't have to be totally entry level either.

 

I noticed that Best Buy has quite a few package deals, mostly with Nikon or Canon cameras. The lower-end Nikons seem to be 6.1 megapixel while the Canons are in the 10-12 range. Will the quality of image be that much different if we are mainly doing 3x5s? Will the Nikon be as fast as the Canon? We had a regular Canon digital camera in the past and it could take pictures like click-click-click; other brands, especially the Panasonic we have now, are more like click-wait-wait-click-wait-wait-click. I'm hoping that any DSLR will be more like cliclicliclick.

 

If you were looking at a package, would you be more interested in an extra lens or a bag/battery?

 

PS - I thought there was a camera thread but I looked back a few pages and couldn't find it.

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The lower-end Nikons seem to be 6.1 megapixel while the Canons are in the 10-12 range. Will the quality of image be that much different if we are mainly doing 3x5s?
No. A 6MP camera will print 10.02" x 6.67" at 300ppi, so for 3x5s it's more than enough.
Will the Nikon be as fast as the Canon? We had a regular Canon digital camera in the past and it could take pictures like click-click-click; other brands, especially the Panasonic we have now, are more like click-wait-wait-click-wait-wait-click. I'm hoping that any DSLR will be more like cliclicliclick.

Depends on the camera, and how clickclickclicky you want it, but yes. For the 6.1MP Nikon you're probably looking at a D40/D50/D70, which is 2.5-3fps. For the Canon probably an XSi (3.5fps, not a big difference) or 40D (6.5fps, you do the math). Both are probably as fast as you want, depending (if you've only shot 5-6fps cameras then half-speed may not be what you expect). There are also other speed factors you may want to consider; one of the things I really love about Canons is their initial AF acquisition speed (which makes catching spur-of-the-moment shots much easier).

If you were looking at a package, would you be more interested in an extra lens or a bag/battery?

Depends on the lenses (Prime? Zoom? What focal lengths? etc.), but probably the extra lens. An extra battery is always good to have for vacations though.

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The Camera thread is actually buried within the Post Your Photos thread below.

 

http://www.lcvg.com/forum/showthread.php?t=8465

 

As for an extra lens, a good two lens kit is always a great start. However, if you know for sure that your wife will delve deeper into DSLRs and get serious with it, I would just stick to a 1 lens kit and put the money to getting a better lens. Kit lenses are not really known to be good quality.

 

As for Nikon/Canon, I think your best best is to have her play around with each one to see what she feels comfortable with. One of the most important to owning a DSLR is comfort. Being able to navigate through the menu, the size of the viewfinder, the size of the LCD, all of these should be taken into consideration. Most of the Cameras in the Entry to Mid level are quite similar.

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Nikon: http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=999996400050000&type=product&id=pcmprd96500050000

 

Canon: http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=9999101200050000&type=product&id=pcmprd101300050000

 

These are the two kits I am primarily looking at. I just looked a little closer and noticed that the Nikon has a screen at 2.5" as opposed to the Canon with 3", and the fps is 2.5 vs 3+. Not sure there is too much difference between them, so I may make my final choice when I get to the store and actually check them out.

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Buy the Canon... I have a Canon SLR (AE1-P) that is 25+ years old and, other than a minor shutter issue 5+ years ago it's STELLAR.

 

I'm looking to replace it with a DSLR sometime in the next year and Canon is the only kind I would look at. Just been putting it off because I have a lot of expensive lenses that I'd really like to keep using, argh.

 

If you don't need 2 lenses you can always just the get body and lense separate for a lot less on amazon.com (without tax). All their DSLRs work natively with Canon EF/EF-S mounted lenses which started coming out in 1992-1993-ish... which you can get pretty cheap used also.

 

I will say that Nikon makes some damn good hunting scopes however :)

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OK, need some more input. If I buy the camera before Sunday, I have pretty much decided to go with the Canon. On Sunday, there are new deals of course and there is also a Best Buy Reward Zone Members Only event that night. (I am limiting myself to Best Buy because I have credit there.) So, which of these options sounds best:

 

1 - Buy the Canon EOS Digital Rebel XSi 12.2 camera with the 18-55mm lens by itself for 729.99 (that price good only through Saturday)

2 - Buy the same Canon Rebel XSi with an additional 55-250mm f/4-5.6 zoom lens for $929 (also only good through Sat)

3 - Buy a Canon EOS Rebel XS with the 18-55mm lens for $599 (deal starts Sunday)

4 - Buy the Rebel XS with an extra 75-300mm lens for $699 (deal also starts Sunday)

or

5 - Buy the Rebel XS with 18-55mm and 75-300mm f/4-5.6 and Canon Speedlite Flash 430 II for $899 (Sunday night deal only)

 

I guess it boils down to how much different is the XS from the XSi. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

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The all-rounder choices are 2 or 4. If you don't want that much zoom or don't think you'll lug/swap a second lens (18-55 should be pretty good if you're interested in mostly taking wide-angle) then 1 or 3. Both include on-camera flash, so 5 is probably only worthwhile if you're interested in a nicer flash unit that you can play around with (i.e. stronger, bounce, or off-camera via cord or E-TTL...if you're new to the world of SLR you probably won't care about this for a while).

 

The XSi has an improved AF system (2 more points, better center for fast lenses), as well as a larger screen (but same resolution). Whether that's worth whatever premium (in addition to the 2.1MP you probably won't notice except in crop situations) is up to you.

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Well, I made my purchase. I managed to get the Rebel XS with the 75-300mm zoom, and bought a bag, extra battery, and filter. Even with the 4-year rip-off..er, protection plan it came out to be more affordable than any XSi deal I could work (of course). My wife was into photography years ago but I think this will keep her happy for now. Thanks for all the input everyone!

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