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Thread: Advice for almost zero knowledge on camera/photography dude (me)

  1. #1

    Smile Advice for almost zero knowledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    Got a nex5n

    *edited*
    Last edited by Halfgeek; 8th December 2011 at 09:13 PM.

  2. #2
    Moderator rhino123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Advice for almost zero knownledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    Quote Originally Posted by Halfgeek View Post
    Hello all, Im interested in learning photography. Was attracted by all the beautiful pictures taken. I went overseas and took pictures using an iphone4 and its when things took a hard turn.
    (house camera spoiled, never owned a personal camera before except for hp camera) Decided to invest in a good camera.

    Im looking to get the Sony Nex5n to kick start my learning journey, would it be a good choice? Any advice on where and how to pick up photography skills and knownledge on cameras easily? I understand
    that photography is an art itself and it not only requires knownledge (know-hows) but also the experience, skills and creativity, but where would be a good place i could learn? (From any magazines or something).


    Any advice or answers from the gurus here would be greatly appreciated. TIA
    First... any camera can take beautiful picture (I think you get that alot when you ask this question)... but down to the basic, picture quality (sharpness, contrast and stuff) is one important factor of getting good photos, but what was more important was composition of the photo... how to you make your photo interesting.

    Then came the equipment... and yes, NEX-5N is an excellent camera, very easy to use (although some of the functions and setting are buried in the menu, it is all up to you to get used to). Please look at our stickies to see what you might want to consider when you buy a camera.

    Also... there is no such thing as picking up skills and knowledge on cameras easily... unless you are a freaking genius... lots of professionals spend their entire life trying to get good shots. Of course there are photography courses and lots of photography books and magazine that you can look at or read (go to Popular Book Stores and you can check out those books). Alternatively, you can take photos and post it up in this forum and ask for opinions... many of our seniors here are very helpful people who will give good advices and tips for you to improve on your shots (I know... I have benefit alot from them). And you could also join some of our outings... there are always seniors around those outings that can give you valuable advices (I have benefited from these outings too).
    I am not a photographer, just someone who happened to have a couple of cameras.
    My lousy shots

  3. #3

    Default Re: Advice for almost zero knownledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    Quote Originally Posted by rhino123 View Post
    First... any camera can take beautiful picture (I think you get that alot when you ask this question)... but down to the basic, picture quality (sharpness, contrast and stuff) is one important factor of getting good photos, but what was more important was composition of the photo... how to you make your photo interesting.

    Then came the equipment... and yes, NEX-5N is an excellent camera, very easy to use (although some of the functions and setting are buried in the menu, it is all up to you to get used to). Please look at our stickies to see what you might want to consider when you buy a camera.

    Also... there is no such thing as picking up skills and knowledge on cameras easily... unless you are a freaking genius... lots of professionals spend their entire life trying to get good shots. Of course there are photography courses and lots of photography books and magazine that you can look at or read (go to Popular Book Stores and you can check out those books). Alternatively, you can take photos and post it up in this forum and ask for opinions... many of our seniors here are very helpful people who will give good advices and tips for you to improve on your shots (I know... I have benefit alot from them). And you could also join some of our outings... there are always seniors around those outings that can give you valuable advices (I have benefited from these outings too).
    Hello there, thank you for your advice. I guess I used it wrong word, instead of "easily" it should be "better".
    I was looking at s95 and lx5 before I choose the nex5n because im afraid one day I would upgrade to an interchangeable lens. Is there any other camera which would be a better choice for me to start things with?

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Halfgeek

    Hello there, thank you for your advice. I guess I used it wrong word, instead of "easily" it should be "better".
    I was looking at s95 and lx5 before I choose the nex5n because im afraid one day I would upgrade to an interchangeable lens. Is there any other camera which would be a better choice for me to start things with?
    Lots of choices out there. What is your budget? Would you consider dslrs or are you only looking at smaller cameras?

  5. #5
    Moderator rhino123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Advice for almost zero knownledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    There are lots of choices. The main thing is you.... first off, you must define what you wish to take (sports, landscape, portrait, wildlife, etc), what are the feature in the cameras that you really want, and what are the features that are good to have. Then you would have to read through some of the reviews on the net... at present moment for the digital interchangeable lens systems there are basically a few types of camera,

    1) Rangefinder - Leica
    2) DSLT (Only sony had this technology - A55, A65, A77)
    3) Mirrorless system
    a) APS-C sensor - Sony and Samsung
    b) M4/3 sensor - Panasonic and Olympus
    c) small sensor - Nikon and Pentax
    4) DSLR (APS-C sensor) - Canon, Nikon, Sony, Pentax
    5) DSLR (FF) - Canon, Nikon, Sony*
    6) DSLR (4/3) - Olympus
    7) Medium format - Pentax, Hassabalt, Mamiya, etc
    8) GXR - Ricoh

    (* not sure if Sony would come up with any new Full frame DSLR in forseeable future, and not sure if A900 is still on sale or not)

    Each of the above interchangeable lens system are good at what they are designed to do (for more information, do read our stickies).

    And as for your question of which system would be better to start you off, the question is best answered by yourself... take consideration to the following,

    1) Ergonomic (placement of buttons, menu user interface, grip design, and everything that you feel good)
    2) Budget (some of these system cost a bomb and if you are not sure if you are into this hobby, it is not good to throw in too much money)
    3) Features (mentioned before, what is the feature you want - video capability, autofocus in video capability, inbody image stabilizing, fast fps, more MP, etc?)
    4) accessories available (external flash, EVF module (mostly for mirrorless system with no build in EVF system, etc)
    5) Weigh of the camera (this can be included in the ergonomic section, but I want to bring this up specifically, trust me, you would not want to be carrying a brick for an entire day).
    6) Lens collection (true, you only need one or two lens at the most, but you would want to have the option to have more lenses available as and when you need them. This is also very important for the type of photography you might want to go into, because some genre required very specialised lenses).

    Hope this help.
    Last edited by rhino123; 23rd November 2011 at 07:59 PM.
    I am not a photographer, just someone who happened to have a couple of cameras.
    My lousy shots

  6. #6

    Default Re: Advice for almost zero knownledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    Quote Originally Posted by rhino123 View Post
    There are lots of choices. The main thing is you.... first off, you must define what you wish to take (sports, landscape, portrait, wildlife, etc), what are the feature in the cameras that you really want, and what are the features that are good to have. Then you would have to read through some of the reviews on the net... at present moment for the digital interchangeable lens systems there are basically a few types of camera,

    1) Rangefinder - Leica
    2) DSLT (Only sony had this technology - A55, A65, A77)
    3) Mirrorless system
    a) APS-C sensor - Sony and Samsung
    b) M4/3 sensor - Panasonic and Olympus
    c) small sensor - Nikon and Pentax
    4) DSLR (APS-C sensor) - Canon, Nikon, Sony, Pentax
    5) DSLR (FF) - Canon, Nikon, Sony*
    6) DSLR (4/3) - Olympus
    7) Medium format - Pentax, Hassabalt, Mamiya, etc
    8) GXR - Ricoh

    (* not sure if Sony would come up with any new Full frame DSLR in forseeable future, and not sure if A900 is still on sale or not)

    Each of the above interchangeable lens system are good at what they are designed to do (for more information, do read our stickies).

    And as for your question of which system would be better to start you off, the question is best answered by yourself... take consideration to the following,

    1) Ergonomic (placement of buttons, menu user interface, grip design, and everything that you feel good)
    2) Budget (some of these system cost a bomb and if you are not sure if you are into this hobby, it is not good to throw in too much money)
    3) Features (mentioned before, what is the feature you want - video capability, autofocus in video capability, inbody image stabilizing, fast fps, more MP, etc?)
    4) accessories available (external flash, EVF module (mostly for mirrorless system with no build in EVF system, etc)
    5) Weigh of the camera (this can be included in the ergonomic section, but I want to bring this up specifically, trust me, you would not want to be carrying a brick for an entire day).
    6) Lens collection (true, you only need one or two lens at the most, but you would want to have the option to have more lenses available as and when you need them. This is also very important for the type of photography you might want to go into, because some genre required very specialised lenses).

    Hope this help.
    Quote Originally Posted by spree86 View Post
    Lots of choices out there. What is your budget? Would you consider dslrs or are you only looking at smaller cameras?
    Hi, thanks guys for replying. my budget is less than 1.4k. DSLR is out of the question, as i would like to bring my camera around with ease, lightweight would be nice.

    Im also interested in interchangable lens system, compact system camera. As changable lens i believe would allow me for greater diversification for future needs/wants in my photographs.

    My aim is to take pictures of random things in life, could be buildings, animals on the streets, zoos etc, people (family event or just random people), I would also like to bring my camera for vacation shots when im overseas for holiday on places... nature... interesting buildings. As for EVF i dont think i need it.... flash as long as it inculdes flash i dont mind external or built in flash. Features wise im not sure in detail what i want, but on the main picture i want good IQ and perferbably in low light situation.

    I know interchanagble lens will still be big with various lens on, but still i perfer a lighter, slimer and smaller body. I wont be going professional in the future, just more of a hobby not gonna earn any money out of this.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Advice for almost zero knownledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    For another alternative to NEX, you may want to also look at Olympus EP-L3 too.
    Too many great equipments but too little quality photos. [My Flickr] | [My Blog]

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    Default Re: Advice for almost zero knownledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    Then the nex 5N would be a very good choice..its very capable and very user friendly. Dont worry about how to operate..its really not that hard..You can just start with full auto, learn from friends, read up books..trail and error, or attend photography courses.. everyone start from scratch anyway..

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    Default Re: Advice for almost zero knownledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    halfgeek? sounds familiar~

  10. #10
    Moderator rhino123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Advice for almost zero knownledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    From your description, basically you are looking at mirrorless and GXR system... all the other might be bigger and not to your taste. Of course, compact cameras like the S100, XZ-1, GD-IV are also good system to start with.

    But if you are looking at interchangeable lens system, Sony's NEX-5N is a respectable system, it had a large sensor (APS-C) and is virtually noiseless till pretty high ISO. The Sony NEX-5N didn't have a built-in flash though, but you can always put on an external flash if you need, do look at NEX-7 (not out yet) too.

    The other system that you might want to look at is Panasonic and Olympus offering - m4/3 system. Not too sure about Panasonic's system but I believe the latest are the GX1 (not out yet), GF-3 and GH2 (or 3). Olympus offering is the Ep3, EPL3 and EPM3.

    Note that the m4/3 sensor are smaller when compared to a APS-C sensor of the NEX-5N, and theoretically, they might not yield as clean an image as the Sony in dark environment or high ISO setting. For me personally, I like the Olympus' handling and ergonomic more than Sony's but that is only personal preference and had nothing to do with SOny's performance.

    So I would suggest that you go down to the shops and handled these cameras yourself... see which you you feel best about, and get that one.

    (PS. Sony's NEX-5N is a good camera system, really good. If you go by this choice, you will not regret it.)
    I am not a photographer, just someone who happened to have a couple of cameras.
    My lousy shots

  11. #11

    Default Re: Advice for almost zero knownledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    Quote Originally Posted by SkyStrike View Post
    For another alternative to NEX, you may want to also look at Olympus EP-L3 too.
    Quote Originally Posted by rhino123 View Post
    From your description, basically you are looking at mirrorless and GXR system... all the other might be bigger and not to your taste. Of course, compact cameras like the S100, XZ-1, GD-IV are also good system to start with.

    But if you are looking at interchangeable lens system, Sony's NEX-5N is a respectable system, it had a large sensor (APS-C) and is virtually noiseless till pretty high ISO. The Sony NEX-5N didn't have a built-in flash though, but you can always put on an external flash if you need, do look at NEX-7 (not out yet) too.

    The other system that you might want to look at is Panasonic and Olympus offering - m4/3 system. Not too sure about Panasonic's system but I believe the latest are the GX1 (not out yet), GF-3 and GH2 (or 3). Olympus offering is the Ep3, EPL3 and EPM3.

    Note that the m4/3 sensor are smaller when compared to a APS-C sensor of the NEX-5N, and theoretically, they might not yield as clean an image as the Sony in dark environment or high ISO setting. For me personally, I like the Olympus' handling and ergonomic more than Sony's but that is only personal preference and had nothing to do with SOny's performance.

    So I would suggest that you go down to the shops and handled these cameras yourself... see which you you feel best about, and get that one.

    (PS. Sony's NEX-5N is a good camera system, really good. If you go by this choice, you will not regret it.)
    Hi, yes im also considering this camera too. I have to agree with rhino bro that the epl3 feels a lil more professional with its dials and stuff. Both feels solid. GF3 feels a little too plastic-ly for me. Learnt that theres also the samsung nx200 and panasonic gx1. But currently im more to nex5n and epl3. IQ and low light performance for night shots is important to me. And i read how a bigger size senor by right in theory should provide a better picture. On the other hand the epl3 has this built in stablizing system (something like this). So its kinda like sony nex5n 1-1 olympus pen epl3? What is the built in stablizing system all about and what advantage/benefits it gives? I also noted that olympus has more lens selections... As for nex3c i dont like the feel, feels plastic too... and for the EP series its kinda a little oversized for me.

    Both of this camera feels good and solid to me. Im still considering these two now...

  12. #12

    Default Re: Advice for almost zero knownledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    Quote Originally Posted by TWmilkteaTW View Post
    Then the nex 5N would be a very good choice..its very capable and very user friendly. Dont worry about how to operate..its really not that hard..You can just start with full auto, learn from friends, read up books..trail and error, or attend photography courses.. everyone start from scratch anyway..
    Ok noted. Thanks!

    Quote Originally Posted by tecnica View Post
    halfgeek? sounds familiar~
    From hardware clinic

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    Default Re: Advice for almost zero knownledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    Basically the stabilizing system is to help "remove" handshake. If your camera does not have this feature, then you will have to get lens with IS/VR/OS (different names for image stabilizing) which normally is more expensive than those without it.
    Too many great equipments but too little quality photos. [My Flickr] | [My Blog]

  14. #14

    Default Re: Advice for almost zero knownledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    Quote Originally Posted by Halfgeek View Post
    From hardware clinic
    hey ya, haha.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Advice for almost zero knownledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    5yrs back - only nikon vs canon
    tat was easy for me ...

    i guess just buy something u think it looks good and most important ergonomic
    every camera is so good now, is only how far u can utilize it

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by Halfgeek
    Hello all, Im interested in learning photography. Was attracted by all the beautiful pictures taken. I went overseas and took pictures using an iphone4 and its when things took a hard turn.
    (house camera spoiled, never owned a personal camera before except for hp camera) Decided to invest in a good camera.

    Im looking to get the Sony Nex5n to kick start my learning journey, would it be a good choice? Any advice on where and how to pick up photography skills and knownledge on cameras easily? I understand
    that photography is an art itself and it not only requires knownledge (know-hows) but also the experience, skills and creativity, but where would be a good place i could learn? (From any magazines or something).

    Any advice or answers from the gurus here would be greatly appreciated. TIA
    Okay so now you have a reason to start. Pretty similar to a lot of people why they want to venture into photography. So let's give you heads up for reason to sustain. If you are ready to start it, then go ahead.

    1) any camera is fine, important is you can afford it and you enjoy using.
    2) all cameras can give you good images, it is how you use it, when you use it, and where to use it. So be prepared for initial disappointment, but if you are willing to sustain this hobby with patience and passion, you will rip something out from it.
    3) when you admire those nice images, some are sheer luck, some are patience waiting and some are planned or staged. There are also those that makes your back pain, shoulder pain, legs pain, smelly from perspire and boredom from waiting. If these all doesn't bother you, then you are about there.
    4) you must also be prepared to lug something with you so that it's there to snap for you when you see something nice. There are a lot of people just end up putting their camera at home and say it is too heavy to bring out. Then you just bought a white elephant home. That is why there are reasons to believe iPhone 4s makes a good camera
    5) when you start into this hobby, it can get expensive and your investment suddenly turn into a chore if you don't manage well. If you are prepared, that's good.

    You can start by thinking is this what you get into? No regrets? Then get started by selecting a camera to start with. Read up what is the offering in the market now online and magazines.
    D3S|N70-200|N24-70|N24-85|N50f1.4|N35f2|SB800|SB900|Yashica GS|S95
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  17. #17

    Default Re: Advice for almost zero knownledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    Quote Originally Posted by SkyStrike View Post
    Basically the stabilizing system is to help "remove" handshake. If your camera does not have this feature, then you will have to get lens with IS/VR/OS (different names for image stabilizing) which normally is more expensive than those without it.
    I see... i will try out both nex5n and the epl3 again... in the meanwhile read more reviews about this two to decide.... somehow im leaning more to the nex5n... but to prevent any regrets, gonna try before i make the jump early next month

  18. #18
    Moderator rhino123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Advice for almost zero knownledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    Quote Originally Posted by Halfgeek View Post
    So its kinda like sony nex5n 1-1 olympus pen epl3? What is the built in stablizing system all about and what advantage/benefits it gives?
    In body image stabilizing system is a good system whereby it would stabilize your shots even when you have a shaky hand (condition applied). Basically many camera system had this type of stabilizing option, some of them are build into the body, others implement it in some of their lenses. One of the good things about in body stabilizing system was that you can utilize any lenses (correct mount though) and still get the benefit of a stabilized system.

    For interchangeable lens cameras system that do not have the inbody stabilizing system, you would either have to rely on the following for image stabilization,

    1) Correct holding techniques/ breathing techniques
    2) Image stabilized lenses (very very expensive)
    3) monopod or tripod

    1) and 3) is also applicable to camera with inbody stabilization system, but it will enhance the experience more.

    As to NEX-5N do not have too many lenses, well... with an adapter, you can use all the A-mount lenses of native Sony DSLT and DSLR cameras.

    And you are right about big size sensor producing cleaner photos (note: Cleaner photo, meaning it had less noise in high ISO)... better picture... not necessary. As I have mentioned before, cleaner, sharper and more contrasty image only make up some part of the overall feel of the picture. The bigger part is the composition... and that is what make your photo interesting.
    I am not a photographer, just someone who happened to have a couple of cameras.
    My lousy shots

  19. #19
    Moderator rhino123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Advice for almost zero knownledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    Quote Originally Posted by Halfgeek View Post
    Anybody who used both/familiar with both the nex5n and pen e-pl3 can reco which one is better or more suitable for me?
    Go down to the shop and test it up yourself. See which one fits in your hands better. They are both very capable machine.
    I am not a photographer, just someone who happened to have a couple of cameras.
    My lousy shots

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    Member Csboi's Avatar
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    Default Re: Advice for almost zero knownledge on camera/photography dude (me)

    Only when you really go down to the shops to try and feel the grip, the weight and everything, the functions. Then you will know what really suits you the most.
    Cheap lenses are not good AND Good lenses are not cheap!

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