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Thread: Need information for upgrading to digital SLRs

  1. #1

    Default Need information for upgrading to digital SLRs

    Have been using compact point and shoot cameras for many years, thinking of upgrading to digital SLR since I can get one cheap (2nd hand). But the SLR world is bewildering - so much jargon, equipment to consider, lens, mounts. Short of going for a photography course, any good web articles or books to recommend for me to get up to speed on SLR?

    I'm familiar enough with fstops and aperture sizes as I play with these settings on my Canon S45. Also I'm familiar with basic photography fundamentals like rule of thirds, etc. It's the SLR equipment that confuses me.

    If I buy this 2nd hand SLR body, I have no idea what lens to get, what flash to get, etc. Does the autofocus lie with the camera body or the lens? What is the difference if I get a 28 - 105 mm zoom lens vs a 50mm lens? After all, the 28-105mm should be able to do a 50mm as well right?

  2. #2
    Moderator ortega's Avatar
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    For starters,

    Fstops and aperture sizes are the same thing
    Shutter speed is the other control.
    The AF is in the camera
    Lens, get a general purpose zoom lens first, but take into consideration the Crop factor.
    The difference is in the Fstop of that lens. eg. the 50mm usually comes with a fast aperture, like F1.8 - F1.4, while the zoom will be something like F3.5-F4.5.

    My advice is to join photoshoots to meet up with like minded people who will love to show you their equipment and talk about it till the sun sets.

    Do you have a camera in mind? It would be easier.

  3. #3

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    AF is dependent on lens, some lens lack the motor to do af and are strictly MF only. (eg: tilt shift lenses, extreme macro lenses etc.)

    Does the autofocus lie with the camera body or the lens? What is the difference if I get a 28 - 105 mm zoom lens vs a 50mm lens? After all, the 28-105mm should be able to do a
    lenses have certain characteristics that distinguish them.
    a) edge to edge sharpness
    b) minimum distance to subject from sensor plane
    c) maximum f/stop (eg; f/1.8, f/2.8 etc)
    d) minimum f/stop (eg: f/22 or f/32)
    e) bokeh. (caused by the characteristics of the lens aperture blades, can be star, point, hexagon , donut (mirror lenses generally))
    f) weight + size + front filter diameter
    g) sharpness, barrel distortion, contrast, color tone (warm/cool/neutral)
    h) flare resistance
    i) other special features like (image stabilisation) IS/VR/OS or (ultrasonic motor) USM/HSM/SW and Digital only (smaller image circle, not suited for Fullframe cameras)
    j) construction material - plastic, magnesium, steel, titanium, carbon fibre, basalt, fluorite, do glass...etc
    k) branding and warranty
    l) price.!
    Last edited by loupgarou; 4th March 2005 at 03:53 PM.

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    Moderator ortega's Avatar
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    not forgetting drool factor.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by ortega
    not forgetting drool factor.
    Lolz, yeah man...
    said like a true enthu... hehe

    as to what lens and flash, its really dependable on what slr are u getting 1st?
    Not all lens and flash works with all the slrs... =)

    most pp would suggested to use a dedicated flash (erm, e.g. if u are using a canon, its of course better to use a canon external flash etc)

    do your research, and check the market rate, I belive you can scroll thro the buy/sell thread here too... since now with e 20D and 350D in the pipeline, I noticed quite a no. of pp are selling their 300Ds and etc...

  6. #6

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    28-105 is a zoom lens
    50mm is a prime lens, cannot zoom

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