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Thread: Newbie need help in choosing budget dslr and lens.

  1. #1

    Default Newbie need help in choosing budget dslr and lens.

    My first post. Newbie with not much idea of SLR or photography here. Need some help in buying a budget dslr. As photography is not my main interest and my other hobbies(R/C heli and hifi) are like bottomless pits, I think I will probably buy a set and stick with it for years. My budget around 1.5k and prefer to buy new because I have absolutely no idea about testing equipments.

    Sometimes my hobby requires me to take some decently sharp and clear photos. Normally my photos will be of things like screws, tiny metal parts etc. And sometimes I repair my R/C heli till middle of the night under not so bright light with tired and shaky hands, so I think I prefer one that can handle higher ISO better so I don't have to use long exposure time. I like those nice bokeh too. I also find that most of the time I just move the camera, instead of using the zoom on my pns when I take such photos, so I don't think I need a zoom lens.

    Occasionally, I like to take some photos of nice sky and simple scenery. Not super particular about how they come out, as long as they look decent.

    some e.g of what I take...

    I don't do photos of people or nature and I don't plan on walking around with a slr, coz I usually just bring pns.

    As I really don't have the time to learn photography and editing, most of the time I will just be shooting with liveview and in jpg format. The only pp that I will do is crop.

    Been reading and so far, my options for body are down to the sony A300, olympus E520 and canon 450D. As for lens, I am not too sure what suitable lens I can get after selling away the sony kit lens should I get the A300 kit. If I go the olympus way, I will probably keep the kit 14-54 lens and get the 25mm pancake. If I go the canon option, I will probably get just the body and a sigma 30mm f1.4. Which is more suitable for what I shoot?

    I read that the A300 and E520 have more noise at higher ISO, so right now my I am leaning towards the canon 450d body+sigma 30mm which I think will put me a bit out of my budet.

    I also read about UV filter. How much does a decent one cost? Any recommendation? What will happen if I don't use one?

    Not planning to buy tripod or flash or other lens. Probably will get a small dry cabinet also.

    So my question is, for what I usually take, the canon 450d+sigma 30mm is ok?

  2. #2
    Senior Member luna_sea83's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005

    Default Re: Newbie need help in choosing budget dslr and lens.

    maybe a prosumer would suit better

  3. #3
    Senior Member Galdor's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Planet Gaia

    Default Re: Newbie need help in choosing budget dslr and lens.

    I agree with luna_sea83. Get the Sony R1 if you can find one. The big sensor size should be able to give you good pictures.

    If you are really keen to get a DSLR and like the A300 you can get the Tamron 17-50mm f2.8 lens or a 50mm f1.4 for general use.
    Minolta. Konica Minolta. Sony

  4. #4

    Default Re: Newbie need help in choosing budget dslr and lens.

    Good deals on the R1 now... Saw some selling for 500-600 in the BnS...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Singapore, Singapore

    Default Re: Newbie need help in choosing budget dslr and lens.

    why not go for 1000D canon promo with 75-300mm promo lens and get a tamron 17-50mm for general purpose shooting.

    1099 (with kit lens) +59 (promo lens) + Tamron 600
    5D MKII,1000D,16-35mm f/2.8 L USMII,75-300mm,18-55mm,EF 50mm f/1.8 II,EF 85mm f/1.8 USM

  6. #6

    Default Re: Newbie need help in choosing budget dslr and lens.

    if direct from cam with Jpg, D80 or D60 is not a bad selection!

  7. #7

    Default Re: Newbie need help in choosing budget dslr and lens.

    From what I read, you're not really interested in photography per se. So, what you should do is to get a PNS camera with good macro capability. A DSLR requires a bit of knowledge to tame, so you may end up taking worse pictures than your PNS camera.

    But if all you want to take is like screws and stuff... I think a good DSLR combination (new) with your budget would be:

    1. Canon 450D
    2. Canon EF 50mm f/2.5 macro.
    3. A tripod.

    But like I said... it all seems a bit of a waste because the DSLR is capable of much more.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Anson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006

    Default Re: Newbie need help in choosing budget dslr and lens.

    Why not get a FZ50 + Raynox DCR 250?

  9. #9

    Default Re: Newbie need help in choosing budget dslr and lens.

    Thanks for all the kind advice.

    I have actually considered about prosumers before, but read that many upgrade from prosumer to dslr within a very short time and end up losing money, so I suppose there is some performance difference between the two?

    I currently have two pns. One is a old panasonic fx-7, the other is a sony w150. What I don't like about them is that they are too small to hold properly, cannot manual focus, cannot adjust the f-stop, cannot adjust exposure timing(only the sony) and not so noise free at higher ISO. In fact, the pictures from my fx-7 at iso 400 is almost not usable because of the noise.

    I am not sure if I am doing something wrong, but sometimes the AF on my pns is just not able to do its job properly. What happens is that it will rotate in, rotate out, rotate in, rotate out and stay at a slightly out of focus position, i.e. it goes clear, blur, clear, blur and stop at not so clear. I am using that small "point like box" AF mode.

    Not sure if this is being over-ambitous for a newbie, but I would like to learn to take some photos where they blur the front, blur the back and only the center is in focus. This is so if I am taking photo, I can emphasize a certain part that I want to show. Read that it is easier at lower f number because larger aperture and so smaller depth of field. Not sure if I am even making sense here, so don't flame me if I am wrong. What I am trying to achieve is this type of effect...sorry if the photo taken is of no standard/theme/idea, coz I really don't have much idea about photography...just trying to show what I mean by the front blur back blur...

    So 50mm lens is the more recommended one over the sigma 30mm f1.4?
    Last edited by londonbridge; 3rd January 2009 at 01:00 AM.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Newbie need help in choosing budget dslr and lens.

    450D is really prosumer... though it is made so well that pros use them as their backup.

    But from what you describe, you are really better off with a pns camera. There are pns cameras out there that let you adjust f/stop, etc. If high ISO noise is a problem, just improve the lighting when you shoot the screws and keep the ISO low.

    50mm f/2.5 macro is not better than 30mm f/1.4. They are different. I don't have either of them... but I believe the 50mm f/2.5 will allow you to get closer... while the sigma will let you go wider and offer better DOF. But once you get so close to shoot screws and stuff, f/2.5 already gets you quite narrow DOF.

    But if you want to lower your budget, just get the kit lens and buy a set of close-up filters. They do the job quite well.


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