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Thread: Magnification help

  1. #1

    Default Magnification help

    Hi,

    I am a complete newbie to DSLR's and am just about to buy a Nikon D5000 kit.

    I have an oldsony handycam that has 40x optical zoom which is fantastic, I would like if possible (and cheap enough) to have the same/similar zoom capability with a lens for the D5000.

    All I can see however are numbers like 70-300mm which come in the kit.

    How do these numbers transalte into magnification values in terms of x optical zoom so that I can compare magnification with the handycam.

    thanks for your help in advance

  2. #2

    Default Re: Magnification help

    Please.... TRY A SEARCH. Heck, even Google could help you.

    But since my home team just won their match, I'll help you out...

    "Zoom" is a misnomer and many people mix it up with focal length. "zoom" is just longest telephoto/widest angle. So a 10mm-20mm lens is a 2x zoom. So is a 200-400 lens. A 50-500 would be 10x, but so would a 20-200mm lens.

    with the tiiiiiiny sensors used in handycams, it's easy to get a "high zoom". but realistically, you need to search for the 35mm equiv. focal length of that handycam.
    Alpha

  3. #3
    Senior Member ZerocoolAstra's Avatar
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    Default Re: Magnification help

    Quote Originally Posted by reidste View Post
    Hi,

    I am a complete newbie to DSLR's and am just about to buy a Nikon D5000 kit.

    I have an oldsony handycam that has 40x optical zoom which is fantastic, I would like if possible (and cheap enough) to have the same/similar zoom capability with a lens for the D5000.

    All I can see however are numbers like 70-300mm which come in the kit.

    How do these numbers transalte into magnification values in terms of x optical zoom so that I can compare magnification with the handycam.

    thanks for your help in advance

    Rashkae has already answered your question...
    Might I suggest you hold off your DSLR purchase until you're sure it's what you want...
    It'd be very hard to get anywhere close to the zooming capability of a handycam, with a DSLR.
    I'd imagine that your widest view on the viewfinder would be somewhere close to 28mm on a 35mm-format camera, so... having 40x means a... 28-(oh gosh... I can't even multiply in my head...).... 28-1120mm lens!!! sorry... that doesn't exist yet...
    Exploring! :)

  4. #4
    Senior Member giantcanopy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Magnification help

    Quote Originally Posted by reidste View Post
    Hi,

    I am a complete newbie to DSLR's and am just about to buy a Nikon D5000 kit.

    I have an oldsony handycam that has 40x optical zoom which is fantastic, I would like if possible (and cheap enough) to have the same/similar zoom capability with a lens for the D5000.

    All I can see however are numbers like 70-300mm which come in the kit.

    How do these numbers transalte into magnification values in terms of x optical zoom so that I can compare magnification with the handycam.

    thanks for your help in advance
    As mentioned, the optical zoom is just a ratio of the longest focal length to the shortest focal length. For the really tiny sensor size of a camcorder, a 40x optical zoom is a pretty small package ( and i suspect they do not do as much rigorous abberation corrections and stuffs compared to DSLR lenses ). The DSLR however sports a much bigger sensor, and to make a 40x optical zoom is going to be ... pretty damn huge and impractical. There are some superzooms such as 18-200 for instance that gives u a handy coverage if u r looking for one.

    ryan

  5. #5

    Default Re: Magnification help

    One of the reason ppl buying DSLR is the ability of changing lens to suit specific shooting requirement.

    If you are looking for super zoom capability, i believe it defeats the purpose of DSLR. Might as well buy prosumer PnS with super zoom capability

  6. #6
    Member DrSpock's Avatar
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    Default Re: Magnification help

    Well, you still can do it with this line up of lenses from 10mm x40 = 400mm.

    10-24, 24-70, 70-200 or 80-400 but it'll set you back by at least $5-6K
    Photography? It's all in your mind...

  7. #7
    Moderator Octarine's Avatar
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    Default Re: Magnification help

    Quote Originally Posted by reidste View Post
    I have an oldsony handycam that has 40x optical zoom which is fantastic, I would like if possible (and cheap enough) to have the same/similar zoom capability with a lens for the D5000.

    All I can see however are numbers like 70-300mm which come in the kit.
    The issue is not the numbers at the kit but the misleading marketing blabber about zoom on handycams and digicams. 40x just sounds impressive - enough to impress unknowing consumers. The more the better .. perfect concept to sell. DSLR is the concept of getting the right lens for the job. In return each lens is specialized for its purpose and gives higher quality. There are a few lenses labeled as 'superzooms' but there are trade-offs, too.
    Whatever camera you get - just get only the kit lens first, nothing else. Learn from there and explore, soon you will know what you really need. No point getting any other lens because chances are that you waste money. Cheap telephoto zooms are cheap for a reason .. and some shops will still mark-up heavily for unknowing beginners.
    How many times have you really used all the zoom up to 40x?
    EOS

  8. #8
    Senior Member ZerocoolAstra's Avatar
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    Default Re: Magnification help

    more importantly... how the heck did you manage to hold the camera steady at 40X zoom??
    Exploring! :)

  9. #9
    Senior Member madmartian's Avatar
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    Default Re: Magnification help

    Welcome to CS
    Take the shot!

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