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Thread: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

  1. #1

    Default Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    Hello I require assistance -

    The school where I teach in - the principal has requested that I recommend an entry level DSLR for the kids of the photography club to use. I'm fairly new at this kind of thing! I don't know squat about DSLRs!

    Can any assist in providing a good review website or any proper entry level cams or lenses? Or give me some guy from some shop that knows his stuff?

    I'm pretty good with an IXUS point and shoot, but this thing is a whole new ballgame to me!

    I've gone through some sites and the Canon 350D seems like a good camera to use...

    Awaiting and appreciating your assistance!

  2. #2

    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    It would depend on the budget set aside for the kids. A second hand 350D(less than 1k) or even 20D(1k or slightly higher) or Nikon D70 would be good. If you are looking at new systems you can try the 400D or Nikon's D50 or D40. A few others to condider are the Olymups E-500 or E-330 , Pentax K10/ K100 and the KM 7D / Sony A100. Do note that it is harder to find acessories and lenses for the later 2 systems...
    Furry Photos - Photography for the Modern Pet

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    i was thinking, if it is getting the DSLR to teach students who are new to photography, would it instead be a better idea to get new one? [for its warranty]

  4. #4
    Senior Member zac08's Avatar
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    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    Actually...

    I would suggest the Nikon D50's or D70's as beginner sets. Both have decent kit lenses and you can add on more lenses along the way at decent pricing.

    D50 kit - approx 1.1k plus
    D70s kit - approx 1.6k plus

    SB600 flash - $345
    50mm f1.8 - $180
    70-300 - $250

    These should cover most of the action and type of shots they may wanna try out for the moment.

    PS : this is about what we're using for the school I'm working in too.
    Michael Lim
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  5. #5

    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    If you are fairly new about DSLR, better let your principal know 1st.
    I believe there are some staffs in your school who know about DSLR. Can try aask around.

    Nikon or Canon is the safest as there is big market here. Lots of accessories readily available.

    Next, what is the kids going to shoot? They will also need external flash, tripod and maybe additional lens.

    Can check this site for more reviews. www.dpreview.com

    James

  6. #6

    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    Hmm, perhaps you should present a range of DSLRs with their prices so that the students (actually the parents) have a choice.

    I'd recommend talking in person to Samuel at John 3:16 at Funan Center #03-37 Tel: 63372877 (closed Sundays). You might want to try to arrange some tie-up with a shop for more discounts? Or better still talk to Nikon or Canon

    A good comprehensive site would be: http://www.dpreview.com.
    This one's a good read too: http://www.kenrockwell.com

    I'm from the Nikon camp, so entry level could be D70s, D80, D40(replace D50) (oldest to latest).

    I also wonder, the kids might already know what's good in the market if they're old enough. Ask them?

    Quote Originally Posted by Takumi View Post
    Hello I require assistance -

    The school where I teach in - the principal has requested that I recommend an entry level DSLR for the kids of the photography club to use. I'm fairly new at this kind of thing! I don't know squat about DSLRs!

    Can any assist in providing a good review website or any proper entry level cams or lenses? Or give me some guy from some shop that knows his stuff?

    I'm pretty good with an IXUS point and shoot, but this thing is a whole new ballgame to me!

    I've gone through some sites and the Canon 350D seems like a good camera to use...

    Awaiting and appreciating your assistance!
    "...not taking what one doesn't desire is the hardest thing in the world" - Albert Camus

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    Quote Originally Posted by kcuf2 View Post
    i was thinking, if it is getting the DSLR to teach students who are new to photography, would it instead be a better idea to get new one? [for its warranty]
    yep.

    MOE regulations state that equipment can be renewed only every 3 years, so, its better to get a new one lah.

    My school uses a Canon system, although i am familiar with Nikon/Canon/Olympus systems.

    Here's what my school has:
    2 Canon 350Ds,
    Canon 300D, old one
    EF 17-40mm f4 L USM
    EF 24-70 f2.8 L USM
    EF 70-200mm f4 L USM
    EF 50mm f1.4 USM
    EF 100mm f2.8 Macro USM
    plus three kits
    2 430EX flash units and
    light meter with Omni-bounce diffusers.

    All coupled with Tokina filters and 2 CPLs.

    That is if your sch got budget lah. heh. :P

    But for a beginner, and I would think a Canon system is easier to use. Nikon, not very easy (everything is a combo of dials, blah blah, and use already my juniors comprain), more expensive bodies.

    Budget combo:
    2 350D/400D (1 body only, one kit) <350D, $1299, 400D, $1470 at Cathay Photo marina>
    EF-S 17-85 f4-5.6 IS USM ($1150-1200)
    EF 50mm f1.8 ($150, can get for $50 also can)
    EF 75-300mm (IS version: $1589 (that's list price, can get cheaper), non IS, USM version: $500 (but can get for much much less) )
    One 430EX flash. ($550)
    Should get 2 1Gb cards, EF lens workbooks (very good reference for students), as well as 2 bags. bargain for tripod thrown in lah.
    And if you want no-flash photography, Canon's noise-reduction is reputedly the best in the market.

    Total: ($4984-6429)
    Last edited by XiaoMiaoWang; 28th December 2006 at 11:05 AM.

  8. #8
    Senior Member zac08's Avatar
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    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    Quote Originally Posted by XiaoMiaoWang View Post
    But for a beginner, and I would think a Canon system is easier to use. Nikon, not very easy (everything is a combo of dials, blah blah, and use already my juniors comprain), more expensive bodies.

    And if you want no-flash photography, Canon's noise-reduction is reputedly the best in the market.
    Well.. it all depends on individuals. All the kids I trained were ok with the double dial (one for aperture, one for shutter) system (for F60, F80 and D70) IIRC, D50 is single dial...

    Start off with aperture control for them and the composition. When they are better with the correlation of ISO, Aperture and Shutter, then you let them play with compensation for creativity.

    Also, do remind the P that you'd need a dedicated PC, with decent graphics and also lots of RAM for editing purposes. Make sure you have plenty of HDD space. Those bought on tender dun have enough normally.
    Michael Lim
    My Flickr Site

  9. #9

    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    just check forums like dpreview.

    google also for reviews on the common DSLR models like the D40, canon 350D etc. at the end of the day, all the entry level DSLR's are good enough for beginners. as to which one to choose is really a matter of personal prefence and mount choice i.e. consider upgrade path and lenses and other accessories.
    Last edited by jdredd; 28th December 2006 at 11:03 AM.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    Quote Originally Posted by zac08 View Post
    Well.. it all depends on individuals. All the kids I trained were ok with the double dial (one for aperture, one for shutter) system (for F60, F80 and D70) IIRC, D50 is single dial...

    Start off with aperture control for them and the composition. When they are better with the correlation of ISO, Aperture and Shutter, then you let them play with compensation for creativity.

    Also, do remind the P that you'd need a dedicated PC, with decent graphics and also lots of RAM for editing purposes. Make sure you have plenty of HDD space. Those bought on tender dun have enough normally.
    I suppose the school's IT dept can take care of that.

    Ummm, ya. you need at least 500GB for archival. And someone from the club to process and do selection after every shoot. and.... CS2/CS3! (if you are doing school publications lah)

  11. #11

    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    Thanks guys, it's a bit of an arrow for me. I'm pretty new to the school, but I'm considering getting the 400D, and a telephoto and an wide angle... (correct? sorry me noob)

    I think we need to ensure that the kids can shoot decent performance photos on stage as well as chronicle school events as well as take semi-decent photos that we can use for PR purposes. Lotsa photos taken indoors on stage have bad lighting, so I guess we got to consider that as a factor.

    Thing is, must convince principal and IT HOD. Thinking of how to make words more convincing as well as searching for a photog hobbyist teacher that is more senior, so that he can endorse my claims.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    Quote Originally Posted by Takumi View Post
    Thanks guys, it's a bit of an arrow for me. I'm pretty new to the school, but I'm considering getting the 400D, and a telephoto and an wide angle... (correct? sorry me noob)

    I think we need to ensure that the kids can shoot decent performance photos on stage as well as chronicle school events as well as take semi-decent photos that we can use for PR purposes. Lotsa photos taken indoors on stage have bad lighting, so I guess we got to consider that as a factor.

    Thing is, must convince principal and IT HOD. Thinking of how to make words more convincing as well as searching for a photog hobbyist teacher that is more senior, so that he can endorse my claims.

    you will also need a decent flash, e.g. 430EX or 580EX for taking photos of stage performances.
    you can buy better gear but you can't buy a better eye

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    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    and decent set of f2.8 L lens...or not is quite impossible to take stage cause usually its dark

  14. #14

    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    aiyah, simple.

    2 Sony A100, 2 18-70, 2 75-300, 2 1GB Memory Sticks(damn fast I can say), 2 Photo Storage Viewers, 2 GPS taggers, 2 Semi-hard Casing, 2 Free Photo Courses.

    cost is 4k. best still, all have IS due to A100.

    not sure about the cost of the flash. recommend getting 2 HVL-F56AM as those lenses aren't fast enough for low light non-flash photography. So inclusive of flash, the total amount is around 5k.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    personally, just go for the set with the best deal, in terms of bodies, lenses, and even flash...image quality wise, there is not that much diff between brands really...plan according to your budget of how many bodies, lenses and other stuff you need...

  16. #16

    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    nikon d40...canon 400d

  17. #17
    Senior Member zac08's Avatar
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    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    Quote Originally Posted by theRBK View Post
    personally, just go for the set with the best deal, in terms of bodies, lenses, and even flash...image quality wise, there is not that much diff between brands really...plan according to your budget of how many bodies, lenses and other stuff you need...
    Yeah... you may need more than 1 set. What we normally do is have more than 2 sets on hand. Get at least 2 digital bodies and 2 film bodies, so you have enough coverage on big events. To add on, get more PnS cams to fill in for the other kids on the team...
    Michael Lim
    My Flickr Site

  18. #18

    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    Quote Originally Posted by westwest1 View Post
    and decent set of f2.8 L lens...or not is quite impossible to take stage cause usually its dark
    aiyo... pass me the crack pipe u are smoking la... must be L brigade issue.

    u dont need a decent 2.8L lens to take... tamron or sigma or tokina already make perfectly good 2.8 aperture lenses.

    in any event, dun even need to spend so much $$$. 50mm 1.8 or 85mm 1.8 good enough for low light indoor work already..

    to the TS, ill say this again. dun get caught up in techno babble. all cameras can take good pictures. just find one system that fits ur budget, and mai tu liow. the longer u procrastinate, the less time is spent out there shooting.

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    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    Quote Originally Posted by satay16 View Post
    aiyah, simple.

    2 Sony A100, 2 18-70, 2 75-300, 2 1GB Memory Sticks(damn fast I can say), 2 Photo Storage Viewers, 2 GPS taggers, 2 Semi-hard Casing, 2 Free Photo Courses.

    cost is 4k. best still, all have IS due to A100.

    not sure about the cost of the flash. recommend getting 2 HVL-F56AM as those lenses aren't fast enough for low light non-flash photography. So inclusive of flash, the total amount is around 5k.
    better still... Photography HOD & Principal can get the 2 Photo Storage for their office. and they can go take the course together.
    Logging Off. "You have 2,631 messages stored, of a total 400 allowed." don't PM me.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Require Assistance - Entry Level DSLR

    Quote Originally Posted by satay16 View Post
    aiyah, simple.

    2 Sony A100, 2 18-70, 2 75-300, 2 1GB Memory Sticks(damn fast I can say), 2 Photo Storage Viewers, 2 GPS taggers, 2 Semi-hard Casing, 2 Free Photo Courses.

    cost is 4k. best still, all have IS due to A100.

    not sure about the cost of the flash. recommend getting 2 HVL-F56AM as those lenses aren't fast enough for low light non-flash photography. So inclusive of flash, the total amount is around 5k.
    ahem. upgrading lens-wise? How? All your Gs are very expensive horh.

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