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Thread: Going to China, what to use?

  1. #1

    Default Going to China, what to use?

    Hi would need some advise if I shud get a prosumer or a used dslr to shoot the scenery in picturesque China. If prosumer which would be good? the latest S9600 or S6500FD? or something else...?

    If dslr, what would be a good used dslr body? and what sort of lens to shoot landscape and also my other half?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    With you asking this question is quite worrying.

    I think the most important is the know-how of photography. Once you figure that out, you will understand the strength and limitation of each camera type. You will be amaze that even camera phones like K800i, you can produce quite stunning photos if you know what you are doing.

    IMHO, learn how to take photos first before worrying what type of camera to use.
    Last edited by Scaglietti; 4th October 2006 at 01:36 PM.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    Quote Originally Posted by Scaglietti View Post
    With you asking this question is quite worrying.

    I think the most important is the know-how of photography. Once you figure that out, you will understand the strength and limitation of each camera type. You will be amaze that even camera phones like K800i, you can produce quite stunning photos if you know what you are doing.

    IMHO, learn how to take photos first before worrying what type of camera to use.
    Ok...that's pretty helpful...Well, I thought we would first need a device known as a camera to even begin taking some photos....oh well...maybe I am wrong.

    Could somebody ELSE help me out with some constructive advise? I am no expert definitely but I do know about picture composition and the other stuff though not an expert. I previously used the 350D but sold it off as I had not much time to play around with it. I would like to start again on my upcoming trip to China.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    Quote Originally Posted by enigma80 View Post
    Ok...that's pretty helpful...Well, I thought we would first need a device known as a camera to even begin taking some photos....oh well...maybe I am wrong.

    Could somebody ELSE help me out with some constructive advise? I am no expert definitely but I do know about picture composition and the other stuff though not an expert. I previously used the 350D but sold it off as I had not much time to play around with it. I would like to start again on my upcoming trip to China.
    I think you're asking for very practical advice. Many here are hobbyists with a strong drive to buy the latest greatest gadget

    If photography is not a serious hobby and this trip is more important as a holiday with your important other half, then just get the latest prosumer camera by reading the camera reviews. Likely easy to use, easy to view for checking, and long lasting batteries would be important for holidays.

    Check out camera review websites like http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/specs.asp
    Or better still, visit a reliable camera shop and ask for recommendations, and to touch and feel the camera if they allow.

    If you had not much time to "play" with 350D, then likely getting another DSLR will become white elephant after the holiday. For second hand, I guess the Nikon D70s might be good bargain now because the new D80 was launched recently. For convenience, just get the kit zoom lens that comes with the camera body. Also, carrying a "big" DSLR around is sometimes not much fun and may attract unwanted attention.

    Or, why not borrow a DSLR from friends/relatives, etc? You can always try first before deciding to invest
    "...not taking what one doesn't desire is the hardest thing in the world" - Albert Camus

  5. #5

    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    Quote Originally Posted by centurion_sg View Post
    I think you're asking for very practical advice. Many here are hobbyists with a strong drive to buy the latest greatest gadget

    If photography is not a serious hobby and this trip is more important as a holiday with your important other half, then just get the latest prosumer camera by reading the camera reviews. Likely easy to use, easy to view for checking, and long lasting batteries would be important for holidays.

    Check out camera review websites like http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/specs.asp
    Or better still, visit a reliable camera shop and ask for recommendations, and to touch and feel the camera if they allow.

    If you had not much time to "play" with 350D, then likely getting another DSLR will become white elephant after the holiday. For second hand, I guess the Nikon D70s might be good bargain now because the new D80 was launched recently. For convenience, just get the kit zoom lens that comes with the camera body. Also, carrying a "big" DSLR around is sometimes not much fun and may attract unwanted attention.

    Or, why not borrow a DSLR from friends/relatives, etc? You can always try first before deciding to invest

    That's WAT constructive advise is! Anyway thanks. I was also thinking that after the holiday, the Dslr might become a white elephant...sigh.. I was really keen to pick up photography seriously. I think I am more incline towards a prosumer. However as usual wat's good? Of course I know a tool is only as good as its user but I mean, wat in general would give sharp quality images? I have been reading about this S6500FD and the S9600. However there are also some cameras coming up like the Ixus 850. I would probably need a 28mm to shoot landscape to capture more details right? So any prosumer recommendation? Thanks,centurion and to anyone who can help.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    Try to pick up one of those older DSLR models since you're not gonna use it frequently. You don't want to be paying too much for it under that circumstance. Try going for a D70 or 300D + kit lens. Personally I would pick the D70 + the 18-70 kit lens because I greatly prefer the D70's 18-70 to the EF-S 18-55. The D70 also has more functions, most of which are crippled on the 300D. The most serious advice I would give to a irregular user like you though is to plonk down about 1.2k on the nikon 18-200VR, for it will be the last lens you will ever need. If you're not a major hobbyist, but just a casual user, you will never need anything else. If you don't wish to spend that kind of money, the D70 + kit lens will serve you great! Alternatively, try the Sigma and Tamron flavours of the 18-200 lens. The Sigma version now comes with an optical stabiliser too.

    Try to invest in a cheap tripod as well for holidays so you can do some night/sunrise/sunset shots if you like, take a look at the slik models.

    Best of luck!
    My Personal Folio (of random events and things)

  7. #7

    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    seriously, it is up to you and your budget. when i go travel, i tend to rely on my trusty old Canon Pro 90 IS in the past till I sold it recently.

    travel light....and bring a tripod.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?



    Sorry that my post cause you much distress.

    Rephrase: "IMHO, it really doesn't matter that much what camera to bring. As long as you know the strength and limitation of the camera you are using, you should have no problem make great pictures."

    Last edited by Scaglietti; 5th October 2006 at 09:01 AM.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    just make sure that you know your camera well and it has a nice WA lens.
    also bring a small and light tripod.

    I use a slik table pod. have fun!

  10. #10

    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    Rather than tell you WHAT to do, here are the pros and cons of each, and my suggestions for each:

    P&S - cheap, small and light, easy to take photos, no need to worry (too much) about settings, picture quality not so good, limited range of focal lengths. Good for preserving memories, but no "wow!" factor. For this option, I would definitely pick either Fuji F11 or F30, so that you can still take natural light shots.

    DSLR - bigger and bulkier, especially with a range of lenses to make full use of the DSLR (no point bringing a DSLR with one lousy lens - might as well use the P&S). Great range of focal lengths available, pictures taken will be very nice (depending somewhat on the photographer as well, of course). I would bring a 350D or 400D, a Canon 10-22mm for super wide angle landscape and dramatic shots, an 85mm f1.8 for portraits of the other half, and a Tamron 17-50 mm F2.8 as a general use lens. And of course a 420EX flash.

    If I didn't already have DSLR gear, I would definitely take the first option. You can still get very good shots with a Fuji F11, as many CS'ers have proven. If you need the wide angle, yes, there is the Ixus 850 coming, which I'm axiously awaiting.

    A prosumer is really neither here nor there. Between a prosumer and a DSLR, I would rather take the DSLR, because the difference in bulk is negligible.
    Last edited by StreetShooter; 5th October 2006 at 09:44 AM.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    Wow, someone is going for a holiday

    Jz to share some experiences (keep in mind I'm not a pro, tis jz a sharing). Being to Turkey during uni time. Was the group's photographer at that time.

    Everything is in a 'rush' mode, where time to find good angle is rather limited (coz it's a group tour, unless you're on yourself). To play safe I jz use the modes available in the camera rather to make a custom setup, e.g. use scenery mode for secenery and etc. The camera used was (huh, a bit disappointing) a compact digital Nikon coolpix 4200.

    If time machince was ever invented, I'll go back and change to DSLR camera, and bring along a good flash. Easy to take group photos, and can zoom easily without need to move around too much (easier to compose pic).

    In the mosque, muzium, and indoor, i have to desperately use tripod and high iso and without flash coz the flash not powerful enough. So there's lots of 'ghost' wandering around in the pics (anyway i like some of the pics with the ghosts, looks more lively).

    It was snowing when we're there. Then condenstion always happen. Time is wasten when it happens coz need to wait those water vapour to get lost from the inner lense (probably some expert here can provide some experienced solution for this problem - when move from cold to hot place)

    And battery.. huh, another headache. It's cold and battery dies out faster and luckily got a lot of spare. However this' not a problem with dslr, esp D70s (I mentioned it coz so far this' the only DSLR I got and totaly no issue with the battery).

    And I agreed with someone earlier who mentioned that you need a tripod. You gotta to need it.

    Hope this helps. And happy travelling!

  12. #12

    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    Thanks for all the contributions!

    STONED: Your advise to get the D70 is very tempting as my priority to get sharp quality images is the most important.

    STREETSHOOTER:Getting the compacts you mentioned is also tempting in the sense that I do not have to lug a bulk around however in dpreview, the F30 is mentioned NOT to do very well for daylight shots and this gets me worried as on my trip I probably will be taking a lot of shots out during the day.

    I want excellent quality pictures from a camera which can compensate for my own sub standard skills. Also importantly able to do well with scenery and landscape shots. hopefully with the wow factor!

    Keep those contributions coming in. Thanks!

  13. #13

    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    "I want excellent quality pictures from a camera which can compensate for my own sub standard skills."
    Beware! These camera can magnify one's shortfall in skill instead of compensating for it.

    One suggestion: you can consider some of the cameras that comes with image stabiliser. It can come in quite handy in low light or situation where you do not want to deploy your tripod (if you are bringing one in the first place).

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    I would advise to not just think about the short term trip to China.

    There's little point investing $2000 on gear for a 7 day trip, when it's just going to spend the next 10 years collecting dust in the cupboard (happened to me :P).

    Why would you want a dSLR? I reckon mainly for....
    - Noise levels (much lower), but that doesn't matter too much if you are not going to enlarge your pictures to anything larger than A4.
    - Lens versatility, but again, unless you are willing to continue investing money in glass over the next few years, or if you're willing to lug that extra lens around with you everywhere you go, there's little advantage..

    Why would you want a prosumer?
    - Weight/size - USUALLY smaller (depends). Could make all the difference between whether you are going to leave it at home or carry it with you
    - Flexibility - usually an "all in one" lens ranging from wide angle to telephoto, though limited when compared to what you can get with a dSLR.

    I guess when investing in a camera, choose it based on your DAILY photographic habits, not just a single holiday trip. If you're not the sort to go on photographic expeditions, go for something smaller and lighter - it'll be much easier to carry around for everyday use, cos that probably the best way you'll get the most out of your investment. An dSLR will end up being reserved for "special occassions", which admittedly is not too often.

    In terms of what's good? Well I hear the Canon Powershot S2/3 is pretty good. I'm personally interested in the Powershot G7 - no RAW and swivel, but an amatuer like me doesn't really bother with those features anyway :P More interested in the high quality glass and good construction. (Btw im a canon fanboy)

    Cheers
    Sing
    Last edited by irrelevance; 5th October 2006 at 07:57 PM.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    If i may recommend, buy some postcards and enjoy your holiday to China with a cheapie film slr.

    After you come back, read extensively and join some CS shoots with the same film gear. Seriously, CSers are a great bunch of fellas who love to share. Then evaluate what you really want and how much time/$ you can or want to invest into the hobby.

    Photography can get as fun as how much one invest his time/efforts into it. It might be difficult to master/discover over a honeymoon. Well, unless you found the Jedi in you.

    Cheers and happy snapping.

  16. #16

    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    Ok I just bought a used Dslr, D70. Now if anyone can recommend a good lens to go along with.........

  17. #17

    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    Quote Originally Posted by enigma80 View Post
    Ok I just bought a used Dslr, D70. Now if anyone can recommend a good lens to go along with.........
    Just get the 18-200mm VR and save yourself some headaches... it would be the all rounder for holidays.
    One lens to do it all.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    Quote Originally Posted by enigma80 View Post
    Ok I just bought a used Dslr, D70. Now if anyone can recommend a good lens to go along with.........
    Like I said earlier, the kit lens or an 18-200 lens. Alternatively, kit lens + a 70-300 lens.
    My Personal Folio (of random events and things)

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hoky View Post
    Just get the 18-200mm VR and save yourself some headaches... it would be the all rounder for holidays.
    One lens to do it all.
    The lens got hefty distortion and high vignetting leh...I suggest you do some research first.

  20. #20
    Senior Member dominator's Avatar
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    Default Re: Going to China, what to use?

    If going to beijing or those area suffering from sandstorm and very dust prone, suggest just to bring a 18-200mm.
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