1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Equipment Help Choosing a camera

Discussion in 'Photography, Art & Design' started by dom_, 19 Feb 2007.

  1. dom_

    dom_ --->

    Joined:
    4 Jan 2004
    Posts:
    3,942
    Likes Received:
    8
    I am a bit of a camera n00b so be patient with me please.

    I have up to £300 to spend on a camera.
    I am doing a 2 week walk of all the major ridges and peaks in lake district and would like to take a camera with me.
    So it will be used 95% of the time to take landscape pictures, with maybe the odd bit of random closer work like animals/plants etc.

    Everything i need for the two weeks will always have to be carried though. So i will need a large amount of memory as i can not carry a pc as well as a tent, sleeping bag etc. How much is enough?
    How many batteries do i need? I will be able to charge some up over night only 2/3 times during the two weeks, so i will need enough power to last 4-5 days.
    I also do not want 2/3 lenses or one massive lens. If i can afford a dslr at all that is. Space is a premium, but i do not mind sacrificing this for quality pictures.

    I also do not mind second hand.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Jamie

    Jamie ex-Bit-Tech code junkie

    Joined:
    12 Mar 2001
    Posts:
    8,180
    Likes Received:
    54
    I was about to reply to this post to suggest a prosumer camera but I can't find anything that will be wide enough for decent landscape photography. I would recommed trying to find a Canon 300D or 350D in your price range with the kit lens.

    Failing that the Fujifilm Finepix S6500fd does 28mm which is the same as what you'll get with the kit lens.
     
  3. dom_

    dom_ --->

    Joined:
    4 Jan 2004
    Posts:
    3,942
    Likes Received:
    8
    Thanks i will look at those.
    I also noticed:
    Nikon D40 + 18-55mm F3.5-5.6G Lens Kit with 4GB flash card, just out of the price range.
    Is the D40 any good, i only ever seem to see canons.
     
  4. yodasarmpit

    yodasarmpit No longer the other Brett.

    Joined:
    27 May 2002
    Posts:
    11,294
    Likes Received:
    183
    Another vote for a 300D with kit lens, you should be able to pick one up on fleebay with quite a few extras for that price.

    As for memory, I get just over 300 full size jpg's on a 1gig CF card, as for batteries I have two and each lasts a day or two depending on how many shots I take.
     
    Last edited: 19 Feb 2007
  5. Hwulex

    Hwulex What's a Dremel?

    Joined:
    1 Feb 2002
    Posts:
    4,007
    Likes Received:
    1
    If going down the DSLR route, particularly the 300D, I can tell you batteries in my 20D (which are same as those in the 300D) last for over 600 shots each. Take two, maybe three, fully charged (and kept warm!) and should be more than enough. Couple of 2GB CF cards and you're rockin'.

    Can't offer any advice on the D40 as I've never used one. Or any other Nikon for more than 5 minutes, tbh. Sure it'd be perfectly capable, though. :)

    How long 'til your trip? Bare in mind that with a DSLR there's a fairly steep learning curve at the beginning, especially if you want to start making good looking pictures within a short space of time. You'll want to be able to dedicate enough time to the camera before your trip to learn your way round it and how to use it properly.
     
  6. Hiren

    Hiren mind control Moderator

    Joined:
    15 May 2002
    Posts:
    6,131
    Likes Received:
    13
    Fuji Film s9600 is well worth a look at your budget, I just got one and it rocks alot, the only downside being unlike a 2nd hand DLSR you can't change the lens. Stock lens goes down to 28mm, there is a optional wide angle converter you can get which will take you to 22mm.
     
  7. Jumeira_Johnny

    Jumeira_Johnny 16032 - High plains drifter

    Joined:
    13 Nov 2004
    Posts:
    3,707
    Likes Received:
    143
    Tbh, your needs are very specific and I think a dSLR is overkill and overloaded. I would point you to a high end P&S, plus extra card and batteries. That said, the D40 is small, light and user friendly with it's new firmware. It's only downside, for me, was that it has only 3 AF points. But you can eaily live with that. It accepts only AF-S lenses, but that shouldn't limit you, since you don't seem into a mutli-lens setup where you might want an older lens.

    I would recomend not getting caught up in the dSLR hype, or the Canon hype. There are so many quality cameras out there that easily fit your needs for space and ease of use. Right now 6-7MP is the sweet spot for value, and in the last year all camera manufactures have pumped out new models. Panasonic has some nice stuff out now and take a look at the Olymus Stylus 770 SW. Water proof and shock resistant, 7.1MP and IS. Sounds perfect for backpacking to me. Don't forget, just because it's landscape doesn't mean you need super-OMG-180 degree view-wide angle.
     
    Last edited: 20 Feb 2007
  8. dom_

    dom_ --->

    Joined:
    4 Jan 2004
    Posts:
    3,942
    Likes Received:
    8
    The reason i would like to go dslr is that i have always wanted a decent camera and would continue to use it lots afterwards.

    I have 6 months before i go, so some learning time.

    Time to start cramming / learning i guess!
     
  9. Jumeira_Johnny

    Jumeira_Johnny 16032 - High plains drifter

    Joined:
    13 Nov 2004
    Posts:
    3,707
    Likes Received:
    143
    That's fair enough. Then I would look at the 350D/D40 range. They are quite capable cameras provided you take the time to understand them. I think that people's main frustration with dSLR's is that they expect to much from the camera, even on auto, and not enough from themselves.
     
  10. Hwulex

    Hwulex What's a Dremel?

    Joined:
    1 Feb 2002
    Posts:
    4,007
    Likes Received:
    1
    Urgh, Olypmus. Wouldn't touch them with yours. Right what you said about P&S etc, though. But if you'll get more use out of it in the long run, dom_, then DSLR might be worth a look.

    Could be worthwhile getting your hands on one through a friend or something and seeing how you get along and like the format before diving in.
     
  11. sk8phreak88

    sk8phreak88 Minimodder

    Joined:
    8 Aug 2004
    Posts:
    388
    Likes Received:
    0
    I got myself an S3IS last month before I went to cancun And I'm loving it.. I couldn't justify the cost for a DSLR but I'm very impressed with the S3 so far!

    On my 2gb card, at full size it holds 932 pictures, and I can take a good 400 before the batteries run out.. I do how ever have 2650 NI-MH batteries..

    I love it and I wouldn't look back at the purchase!

    EDIT: I'm very much a noob at photography but this is one shot I took on vacation in cancun last month:

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     
  12. olv

    olv he's so bright

    Joined:
    23 Sep 2002
    Posts:
    3,333
    Likes Received:
    1
    Second hand Nikon D50 or Canon 300/350D is definately the way forward. The kit lens, whilst not great will be sufficient for landscapes in the two weeks and you'll be able to buy more lenses at a later date.

    I wouldn't recommend a prosumer like the Fuji s9500 as an alternative, whilst perfectly capable cameras the view finders are absolutely awful. huge turn off for me.
     
  13. kenco_uk

    kenco_uk I unsuccessfully then tried again

    Joined:
    28 Nov 2003
    Posts:
    9,696
    Likes Received:
    308
    I have had a Nikon D40 with 18-55 kit lens for a short while and, whilst I'm still learning how to use it, it's taken some fab pictures so far. If you're going to go for it (and I'd recommend it), you can get the 55-200 DX AF-S lens from the Dixons website for a little over £100, cheapest place I found anywhere on tinternet.

    Be aware that, if you do go ahead with a D40 and if you've stumbled across the 'bargain' I did on ebuyer, it's more than likely a Japanese model/grey import. Happily, ebuyer do offer a warranty service for both body and lens.

    These are the cameras I've had:
    Yashica FX3-2000 slr - amazing camera which I unfortunately had to sell. Wish I'd kept the filters as they'd come in handy now!
    Fujifilm 1300 - my first digital camera, looking back on the pictures, you can see how digicam tech has moved forward a lot.
    Olympus c2020z - so much better than the Fujifilm in every way, with some not half bad piccies compared to recent ones.
    Sony DSC-S70 - amazing quality pictures, mainly down to the Carl Zeiss lens. The only limiting feature was the 3x optical zoom.
    Konica-Minolta Z3 - again, amazing picture quality, with a 12x optical zoom and image stabiliser, the only missing feature was an AF lamp and hence, it focused like mad in less than good light.
    Nikon D40 - gobsmacking. The fact you can take pictures and crop in without losing picture quality is awesome.

    If I had the choice, I'd perhaps go for a body with a focusing motor built in, because the D40 relies on a motor in the lens itself, which limits the lenses you can use (although, if you're good with manual focusing, the catalogue opens up a fair bit). The only reason was that I could get it for a reasonable price and if I liked it, I could build on it with either a new body in years to come or perhaps the odd extra lens. I've never felt as in control of pictures since I sold my old slr and this regains control.

    The non-dslr options for me would be a Canon S3IS (or even the S2IS, which is as good), a Panasonic Lumix DMZ-FZ10 or perhaps a Sony Cybershot H5. All offer a good focal length with features and options up the ying yang, but still in essence being as easy to use as a point n shoot.

    Reviews on dpreview, steves-digicams, dcresource, dcviews and digicamreview are a good place to start, as well as trying them out at your local photo shop - Jessops let me handle a couple without any bother (I didn't buy either though :) ).
     
  14. Hwulex

    Hwulex What's a Dremel?

    Joined:
    1 Feb 2002
    Posts:
    4,007
    Likes Received:
    1
    Oh god, not those digital VF things? URGH!
     
  15. Fod

    Fod what is the cheesecake?

    Joined:
    26 Aug 2004
    Posts:
    5,802
    Likes Received:
    133
    but they have flippy screens which are GREAT!
     
  16. RTT

    RTT #parp

    Joined:
    12 Mar 2001
    Posts:
    14,120
    Likes Received:
    74
    Ok, maybe i'm missing something but why would having the motor in the lens limit the lenses you can fit on the body? I'm pretty sure all bodies these days don't have a motor in them, rather they're now always in the lens? :confused:
     
  17. unrealhippie

    unrealhippie What's a Dremel?

    Joined:
    24 Jul 2004
    Posts:
    1,261
    Likes Received:
    1
    I believe all SLRs have motors in the body, the D40 breaks this as the new standard is to have the motor in the lens, however currently only a few lenses have the motor built in, limiting the number of lenses you can use [if you want to use autofocus] to basically the cheap standard lens and the really expensive ones.

    The motor in the lens will take off, it is the new standard, but as I said it limits the choice of lenses which you can use currently, meaning no second hand kit basically :waah:

    Feel free to correct me if I have misinterpretted anything.
     
  18. RTT

    RTT #parp

    Joined:
    12 Mar 2001
    Posts:
    14,120
    Likes Received:
    74
    Whaaaaaaat? My 350D certainly doesn't have a motor in the body. The only thing between the body and the lens is a set of pins and the lens mount itself. Canon lenses boast "USM" etc, which refers to the motor in the lens?

    I'm not going mad am I? :confused:
     
  19. kenco_uk

    kenco_uk I unsuccessfully then tried again

    Joined:
    28 Nov 2003
    Posts:
    9,696
    Likes Received:
    308
    Well, Nikon have a fairly extensive range of AF lenses that can only be used in AF mode with a body that has an AF motor built in. The D40 is the first Nikon body dslr that doesn't have the mechanical drive motor in it. It's not limiting per se, just not as vast a range of AF lenses (which work in AF) that can be fitted compared to other Nikon bodies (that DO have a motor in the body). I just thought it was worth pointing out. To use AF, you can only use AF-S and AF-I lenses. The DX suffix means it's made for the size of the image sensor and the ED suffix means the lens has an Extra-Low Dispersion element in it, giving apparently cleaner/crisper images.

    The other features to mull over is the fact there's no bracketing of exposure and when shooting RAW+JPEG, the jpeg is saved in basic, rather than fine. Also, the readout normally on the top of dslr's has been shifted onto the large screen on the back, which works very well imo. There's also only 3 focus points to choose from, which is a + or - for different people.
     
    Last edited: 21 Feb 2007
  20. RTT

    RTT #parp

    Joined:
    12 Mar 2001
    Posts:
    14,120
    Likes Received:
    74
    Woah. Color me informed! Didn't realise that you were specifically talking about Nikon stuff :D
     
Tags:

Share This Page