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Thread: DSLR or Compact Dig Camera??

  1. #1
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    Question DSLR or Compact Dig Camera??

    Greetings everyone ! ! I am new to this forum, my 1st post leh.

    I am currently using a Canon S30, had it for quite some years now. Now thinking of "upgrading". But undecisive on whether to get a DSLR or a higher grade compact camera.

    For DSLR, I am considering either Canon 350D or Nikon D70s
    For Compact, I am considering Canon G6, S2 IS or Panasonic FZ5

    My budget is < $2000

    Actually, wanted to move to DSLR, but some concerns have been holding me back
    • if get DSLR, will need time to practice to familiarise the functions, afraid no time
    • after a while, may ended up using the programme or auto mode in the DSLR
    • when going travelling, need to bring along many equipments like lens etc
    • need to invest more money to get either more CF/SD cards or portable hard disk
    • will need to invest more to get different lens, filters etc
    • DSLR cannot take movie clips


    So..... would like to hear some views and advise from the experts here.

    Thank you very much.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: DSLR or Compact Dig Camera??

    The fundermental question is, what is your interest level in photography??? Photographer and equipment hobbyist have different needs, which path do you foresee yourself will take for the short or long run???

    As a general rule, always start from something small, eg: a flim or digital P&S. If photography is not for you, sell the camera away, else upgrade to DSLR, or stay put.

  3. #3

    Default Re: DSLR or Compact Dig Camera??

    Quote Originally Posted by LugeRider
    Greetings everyone ! ! I am new to this forum, my 1st post leh.

    I am currently using a Canon S30, had it for quite some years now. Now thinking of "upgrading". But undecisive on whether to get a DSLR or a higher grade compact camera.

    For DSLR, I am considering either Canon 350D or Nikon D70s
    For Compact, I am considering Canon G6, S2 IS or Panasonic FZ5

    My budget is < $2000

    Actually, wanted to move to DSLR, but some concerns have been holding me back
    • if get DSLR, will need time to practice to familiarise the functions, afraid no time
    • after a while, may ended up using the programme or auto mode in the DSLR
    • when going travelling, need to bring along many equipments like lens etc
    • need to invest more money to get either more CF/SD cards or portable hard disk
    • will need to invest more to get different lens, filters etc
    • DSLR cannot take movie clips


    So..... would like to hear some views and advise from the experts here.

    Thank you very much.

    i would recommend you get the panasonic FZ5. it's got almost everything you need except for a wider angle lens, in a single camera that's great for travelling. getting an equivalent focal length coverage with image stabiliser on a DSLR will cost you much more and will also be heavier and bulkier to lug around.
    Last edited by zaren; 13th September 2005 at 11:36 AM.
    you can buy better gear but you can't buy a better eye

  4. #4

    Default Re: DSLR or Compact Dig Camera??

    I feel that the major differences between prosumer compact digicam and DSLRs are:

    Prosumer:
    • supports video recording
    • quiet shutter trigger
    • LCD live preview, WYSIWYG
    • light-weight compared to DSLR with same zoom range
    • dust-free on image sensor
    • lower maintenance
    • customised lens ensures optic quality is consistent (DSLR optic quality depends on individual lens quality)
    • out-of-camera images are vibrant and usable without much tweaking
    DSLR:
    • actual viewfinder for better manual focusing
    • excellent continuous shooting
    • minimal shutter lag
    • excellent image quality with less JPEG artifacts due to larger image sensor
    • excellent optic quality in terms of depth of field
    • greater shooting possibilities with interchangeable lens
    • longer-lasting shoot per battery charge
    • images have greater dynamic range for post-processing

  5. #5

    Default Re: DSLR or Compact Dig Camera??

    I agree w Zaren. A compact w manual functions would allow you to get used to M, AP and SP ... after that it is an easier learning curve to move to DSLR ... Can save $$ by selling your compact and then investing in a newer model of DSLR ... better still get a 2nd hand compact w the functions you need and learn from there ... save lots of $$ ... the next model is always better

  6. #6
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    Default Re: DSLR or Compact Dig Camera??

    still can keep the compact prosumer camera when you think that DSLR is too heavy and bulky to bring out everyday.

    Starting to miss my FZ5 for its portability, sneak zoom, low maintenance and 12x zoom.
    Sony Alpha 700 hobbyist

  7. #7
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    Default Re: DSLR or Compact Dig Camera??

    Quote Originally Posted by LugeRider
    Greetings everyone ! ! I am new to this forum, my 1st post leh.

    Actually, wanted to move to DSLR, but some concerns have been holding me back
    • if get DSLR, will need time to practice to familiarise the functions, afraid no time
    • after a while, may ended up using the programme or auto mode in the DSLR
    • when going travelling, need to bring along many equipments like lens etc
    • need to invest more money to get either more CF/SD cards or portable hard disk
    • will need to invest more to get different lens, filters etc
    • DSLR cannot take movie clips


    So..... would like to hear some views and advise from the experts here.

    Thank you very much.
    My suggestion is for you to get DSLR.
    Agree about some getting use to but I feel that it is perfectly alright to shoot only in programmed mode. Some professional do that also. There are other things like metering and EV compensation that is also important to get the picture right (the way you envisioned). The kit lens that come with the camera can cover the range for almost all situations (or you want to get a 18-200mm lens that cover everything). So if you are not ready for more specialised photography there isn't many lens you need to buy; and for more zoomX, the picture quality drops. Only one filter to protect your lens is needed (so is your compact camera; it is a disadvantage if your compact cannot attach a filter to protect the lens).
    agreed that DSLR cannot take movie. I have a video cam also but rarely use it because of the time needed to do video editting.
    Finally for me, the switch to DSLR deciding factor is the small time lags that DSLR offer. compact cam at this moment cannot capture the action and quick smile on people. Unless you should mostly landscapes and still object, youre going to miss quite a lot if you're not using DSLR.
    PS: most compact don't have bulb function/long exposure, so night shoot is another miss.
    other than bulky, DSLR can also be quite acceptable in weight

  8. #8
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    Default Re: DSLR or Compact Dig Camera??

    Most of us here had MORE than 1 camera.

    Some SLR with digital compact P&S.
    Some DSLR with digital compact P&S.
    Some collect cameras

    Based on your concerns on DSLR... I think don't get one.

    But if your S30 cannot serve you well, time to shop for new camera with the same function, you will be surprise how low noise it is for some P&S with iso400 (eg. fujifilm f10) compare to canon.

    Happy shopping!

  9. #9

    Default Re: DSLR or Compact Dig Camera??

    I am also using S1 IS now, and have also decided to save up and upgrade to a DSLR soon. Just for interest, here the reasons i have decided to make a DSLR my next purhcase.

    1) The shutter lag. Cuz i take quite a bit of "live" photos, so i miss quite a bit of "the moments"
    2) High noise level at ISO400, that is after blow up lah, if i restrict to 3R size, it is fine.
    3) I dont shoot movie clips as i am too lazy to do any editing.
    4) My interest in photog is almost as high as my interest in cycling, which i have already spent several bombs on. So, a DSLR, at least the 350D, D70s, E300 etc, falls in the "still can pay for" region

    Other than that, my S1 is a very fine camera. It does offers alot of manual control and a wide "range" with out buying too many lens. But to mi, the first 2 reasons are quite compelling.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: DSLR or Compact Dig Camera??

    Sorry, need to clarify some technical terms

    What is "noise", keep reading about "high noise" "low noise" ?
    What is iso400?


    Thanks a lot.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: DSLR or Compact Dig Camera??

    Quote Originally Posted by LugeRider
    Greetings everyone ! ! I am new to this forum, my 1st post leh.

    I am currently using a Canon S30, had it for quite some years now. Now thinking of "upgrading". But undecisive on whether to get a DSLR or a higher grade compact camera.

    For DSLR, I am considering either Canon 350D or Nikon D70s
    For Compact, I am considering Canon G6, S2 IS or Panasonic FZ5

    My budget is < $2000

    Actually, wanted to move to DSLR, but some concerns have been holding me back
    • if get DSLR, will need time to practice to familiarise the functions, afraid no time
    • after a while, may ended up using the programme or auto mode in the DSLR
    • when going travelling, need to bring along many equipments like lens etc
    • need to invest more money to get either more CF/SD cards or portable hard disk
    • will need to invest more to get different lens, filters etc
    • DSLR cannot take movie clips


    So..... would like to hear some views and advise from the experts here.

    Thank you very much.
    Sony is launching a 10 plus mega pixel Digicam with 1.6x(22mm x 15mm) CMOS sensor which is the same sensor that use in D2x too and selling less than $1650...24mm-120mm!

  12. #12
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    Default Re: DSLR or Compact Dig Camera??

    Quote Originally Posted by LugeRider
    Greetings everyone ! ! I am new to this forum, my 1st post leh.

    I am currently using a Canon S30, had it for quite some years now. Now thinking of "upgrading". But undecisive on whether to get a DSLR or a higher grade compact camera.

    For DSLR, I am considering either Canon 350D or Nikon D70s
    For Compact, I am considering Canon G6, S2 IS or Panasonic FZ5

    My budget is < $2000

    Actually, wanted to move to DSLR, but some concerns have been holding me back
    • if get DSLR, will need time to practice to familiarise the functions, afraid no time
    • after a while, may ended up using the programme or auto mode in the DSLR
    • when going travelling, need to bring along many equipments like lens etc
    • need to invest more money to get either more CF/SD cards or portable hard disk
    • will need to invest more to get different lens, filters etc
    • DSLR cannot take movie clips


    So..... would like to hear some views and advise from the experts here.

    Thank you very much.

    P-mode is good enough...but at least when you want to have a slow shuttle..you can do it easily with the dials...
    Travelling can be light...just a good range lens in a top-load pouch will do...+ of CF cards
    Lens can slowly buy...(only when you need it)...there is always good 2nd-lens around.
    Movie...no need lar...good journalistic photos tells the whole story already...

    DSLR DSLR DSLR!!!

    The $$ you pay to get a good prosumer is very close to that the DSLR already...

  13. #13
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    Default Re: DSLR or Compact Dig Camera??

    Quote Originally Posted by volk
    P-mode is good enough...but at least when you want to have a slow shuttle..you can do it easily with the dials...
    Travelling can be light...just a good range lens in a top-load pouch will do...+ of CF cards
    Lens can slowly buy...(only when you need it)...there is always good 2nd-lens around.
    Movie...no need lar...good journalistic photos tells the whole story already...

    The $$ you pay to get a good prosumer is very close to that the DSLR already...
    I agree...
    From Pentax to 4/3, back to Pentax and then back to M4/3 !?!?

  14. #14

    Default Re: DSLR or Compact Dig Camera??

    Just to share some experiences.

    I have a Canon A70

    Great P&S. Nice pics and use AA bat's so good for "running around" and "holiday" type of photos....until my family and I went to Disneyland in California. With all the action, kids going crazy over Mickey Mouse, Cinderella, etc. The A70 couldn't catch up. The night fireworks display was spectacular when seeing live but, sorry doesn't work on pics (not even the mpeg movies).

    So I decided to get a second cam. I still like my A70 so it's still with me but used more by my kid now.

    I got a Nikon Coolpix5700. Proconsumer, swivel LCD, 8 times zoom, etc. Very similar to the Canon Powershot S1.

    Also great cam. Nice pics, can shoot at all angles (i really mean all angles bec of the swivel LCD ). Nice zoom (8 times is good enough). It has manual modes so can do what DSLR can do, right? This cam was ideal until.....
    (1) bec of the zoom, start up is slow. When turn on, the zoom lens have to "come out" so takes a long time. If you want to catch that "crawling kid stands up" moments, forget it. It's gone by the time you turn it on.
    (2) Secondly, the constant on and off of the lens will cause wear and tear on the gears so sooner or later, this will go and you will need expensive repair.
    (3) Thirdly, as someone says, the electronics feature is improving each time and if you buy now you are stuck with it. True enough, I soon found 8 times zoom not enough, the 5 megs ok only, etc.
    (4) You then start buying accessories such as battery grip holder, 2x lens converter, etc. and pretty soon, the slick proconsumer cam becomes a DSLR giant (even heavier than a DSLR).

    Unluckily for us (Luckily, for me , the CP5700 develop problems with the "processor".... the heart of the cam. So bye bye CP5700. By the way, selling the CP5700 accessories now...heheh

    I decided then to get a DSLR. Reasons,
    1) Tried a procam and as I mentioned, there are issues. If i dun need the zoom, the quick shots, the manual overrides, night shoots, etc. my A70 is good enough.
    2) DSLR prices are coming down. The Nikon D50 is only a few hunderd dollars more than the Canon Powershot S2 now. And it's cheaper than the Canon 350D or Nikon D70s.
    3) The DSLR allows for add on lens which I can "upgrade" when I require. For eg, I now shoot with the kit lens, 18-55mm zoom only. So if I start to need a higher zoom, I can get a 55-200mm lens and I'm done. (By the way, I actually got a 70-300mm lens...oops...anyay, you have control over what to spend on)
    4) the video on the P&S is not great after all. Believe me, try filming the Disneyland fireworks with the A70 and you'd know. So I went true video and got a video cam. It's great. I dun actually edit my videos anyway. A video cam is better bec it's clearer, less jerky, and has "nightshots" (allow you to film in almost total darkness).
    5) The new Canon 350D and Nikon D50 DSLRs are actually quite small and easy to carry around so I even plan to carry my D50 with me most of the time. OK you need add on lens if you want more zoom, etc. but with some planning, you can always make do.

    Hope this helps.
    Last edited by John Khoo; 15th September 2005 at 03:42 PM.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: DSLR or Compact Dig Camera??

    Really appreciated for all the comments.

    Thank you very much ! ! !

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