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Rezarf
01-19-2012, 08:23 AM
I am thinking about stepping up out of the point and click camera and I have been looking into the world of Digital SLR's.

I don't want to spend a ton to get into something, but I'd like to have something with a full auto setting and basic learning curve for learning manual photography.

Also, is there any good places to find used gear? Online?

I have handled a Rebel, and a few others around town, but I think I would like to pursue something used to get started.

Is it impossible to have a budget of $250-300 and get into something worth trying out?

CardinalFJ60
01-19-2012, 09:40 AM
the entry level nikons are great as are the Canons. I say, get something that fits your hands, seems intuitive to you, etc. That being said...I'm a fan of B&H photo (www.bhphoto.com) they have a used section and have the best prices on new stuff. I think the Nikon D5000 is a GREAT camera as is the older D3000 and one of my favorites...the D40/D40x (I have the D40x). I'd search for the D40 for an inexpensive used entry level nikon.

Another important thing to look at are lenses and collective knowledge. Lenses: I think Canon has several different mounts, be sure to get a configuration that will allow you to grow into the hobby. Nikon stuff has the same mounts (to get specific, some will support Auto focus other's won't). As you get more into it, let me know what questions you have about lenses.

Collective knowledge: so...I chose Yaesu 'cuz alot of you have that brand and there's alot of knowledge. at the level of money you are spending on a camera or ham you're getting a great product. I'm a Nikon guy and bet there are an equal number of Canon guys in the club. they are both top of class. :thumb:

xodeuce
01-19-2012, 09:44 AM
I am thinking about stepping up out of the point and click camera and I have been looking into the world of Digital SLR's.

I don't want to spend a ton to get into something, but I'd like to have something with a full auto setting and basic learning curve for learning manual photography.

Also, is there any good places to find used gear? Online?

I have handled a Rebel, and a few others around town, but I think I would like to pursue something used to get started.

Is it impossible to have a budget of $250-300 and get into something worth trying out?

KEH.com is a reputable place to get used gear online. Their rating system is very comprehensive, and they're usually pretty conservative with the ratings they give equipment. I've got a few friends that have ordered from them with great results.

$250-300 is going to be a bit tight for anything new in an entry level DSLR, unless you've already got a lens. $500-600 seems to be the starting point for a kit. At that range you'd be looking at a Canon Rebel T2i, or a Nikon D3100.

You could probably score a used Nikon D40, D50, or D70, or a Canon 20D in that range. If you're looking at 2004-2007 vintage, I'd look at the Canon stuff. They were definitely a little ahead of Nikon with their CMOS sensors in my opinion. If you're looking post 2007, either brand would be a good bet.

the entry level nikons are great as are the Canons. I say, get something that fits your hands, seems intuitive to you, etc. That being said...I'm a fan of B&H photo (www.bhphoto.com) they have a used section and have the best prices on new stuff. I think the Nikon D5000 is a GREAT camera as is the older D3000 and one of my favorites...the D40/D40x (I have the D40x). I'd search for the D40 for an inexpensive used entry level nikon.

Another important thing to look at are lenses and collective knowledge. Lenses: I think Canon has several different mounts, be sure to get a configuration that will allow you to grow into the hobby. Nikon stuff has the same mounts (to get specific, some will support Auto focus other's won't). As you get more into it, let me know what questions you have about lenses.

Collective knowledge: so...I chose Yaesu 'cuz alot of you have that brand and there's alot of knowledge. at the level of money you are spending on a camera or ham you're getting a great product. I'm a Nikon guy and bet there are an equal number of Canon guys in the club. they are both top of class. :thumb:

+1 on a used D40x.

AxleIke
01-19-2012, 09:45 AM
IMO, the Rebel is a good starting point. However, if it were me, and I was looking to get into a good camera, I would buy once, cry once. A low end camera is going to leave you wanting on a lot of things.

As an alternative, I got a Nikon Powershot. It is a higher end point and shoot camera that is 12 something MP and has a 30x optical zoom on it. It was just a bit higher than your price range, but not much. My dad has 6k into his Nikon DSLR, and his is only amateur quality.

The Powershot takes very good pictures, can do full manual or full auto, or anything in between. My biggest frustration with it is that the Fstop range is only 3-7, which is pretty lame.

Anyway just another option. I couldn't afford the DSLR option, and I've been pretty happy with the alternative.

smslavin
01-19-2012, 10:32 AM
There's lots of options. Canon vs. Nikon is the same argument as Apple vs. Microsoft. Buy what works for you. In general, Nikons have always had better AF capabilities while Canon was better on color rendition. I started with Canon film bodies and already had a huge investment in lenses so it was a no brainer when I went to digital. The lens mounts are all the same across all bodies.

One thing to keep in mind, whether it's film or digital, a camera body is nothing more than a light proof box. If you move up the model range, sure you might get a few more features, but the quality of the final file stays pretty constant. The one variable is the glass you put on the end. You're much better off buying a lower end body and using the savings towards a piece of better glass. Kit lenses are less than desirable.

Another option to consider, would something similar to Canon's G12. This is an awesome little camera and comes with enough manual features to keep you interested and learning. Nikon probably has something similar. Head over to dpreview (http://www.dpreview.com) and do a little digging around.

I ran my own studio for just over 5 years and I'm more than happy to offer any and all knowledge.

wesintl
01-19-2012, 10:51 AM
I only really know some of the nikon stuff but their entry level dslr d3000 for $450 with 18-55 is a nice camera. With kids though I would step up to the 3100 or the 5100 so you get movie capability. You would be happy with that or the canon equivalents even though it's more money.

I have been thinking about selling my D80 with 28-55 lens. I have everything including the box.. $450, nice and clean

Rezarf
01-20-2012, 10:40 AM
Thanks guys, I have been talking with this guy over on ExPo. We are at $350 shipped to my door for the whole lot. Whatcha' think? I don't have too much time to research the model, and even then I am clueless to much of what I have read. If you guys think its worth going for, I'm going for it.

Link (http://www.expeditionportal.com/forum/threads/69742-Sell-or-Trade-for-Ham-gear!-Canon-Digital-Rebel-Canon-28-135-IS-Lens-and-Lowpro-pack?highlight=)

Drew

smslavin
01-20-2012, 11:15 AM
Thanks guys, I have been talking with this guy over on ExPo. We are at $350 shipped to my door for the whole lot. Whatcha' think? I don't have too much time to research the model, and even then I am clueless to much of what I have read. If you guys think its worth going for, I'm going for it.

Link (http://www.expeditionportal.com/forum/threads/69742-Sell-or-Trade-for-Ham-gear!-Canon-Digital-Rebel-Canon-28-135-IS-Lens-and-Lowpro-pack?highlight=)

Drew

Do it. That 28-135 lens is awesome. You'll be happy with that for awhile.

Hulk
01-20-2012, 12:40 PM
Looks like a deal. If you upgrade later, you'll 2/3 of your money back just selling the lens.

wesintl
01-20-2012, 01:27 PM
I think it's "ok" for a 10 year old 6.3 mp camera. I dunno. Not that great of a "deal" imho. The bags are a personal preference so I don't count them. You're basically getting a lens for that $

IMHO your better off spending $100-150 more on a new camera. warranty, nicer 3+ inch screen compared to the 1.5 on that one, etc, etc. First thing the kids do when you take a pic is want to see it on the back. Plus a couple more years and that body is only worth $50. sure you still have a lens i guess.

JMHO

Hulk
01-20-2012, 01:44 PM
Hmmm. Only 6.3 megapixel? I kind of agree with Wes now.

bgoodheart
01-20-2012, 02:25 PM
I picked up a Digital Rebel exactly like that one for $100 a couple of years ago. The megapixels are misleading, as the pixel density is pretty darn good (it looks far better than some of the newer, high MP units). I'm not much of a photographer, but we have really enjoyed the camera. You can probably do better on the price, despite the nice lens.

wesintl
01-20-2012, 02:46 PM
yeah sure mp is only one thing it's really more of the sensor etc. the sensor on that was the same as the 10D way back when but the software limits it.

when you can get this
http://www.walmart.com/ip/Nikon-10.2MP-D3000-Kit/12169833
and this
http://www.walmart.com/ip/Canon-12.2MP-5157B017/17254377

spending that kinda coin on that old one to me doesn't make sense esp when the canon above has video. I suppose if your budget is your budget you have to get what works for you.

flame suit on

Rezarf
01-21-2012, 08:05 AM
yeah sure mp is only one thing it's really more of the sensor etc. the sensor on that was the same as the 10D way back when but the software limits it.

when you can get this
http://www.walmart.com/ip/Nikon-10.2MP-D3000-Kit/12169833
and this
http://www.walmart.com/ip/Canon-12.2MP-5157B017/17254377

spending that kinda coin on that old one to me doesn't make sense esp when the canon above has video. I suppose if your budget is your budget you have to get what works for you.

flame suit on

Thanks Wes, I am in no hurry, so I think I'll pass... the world of photography is overwhelming. I bet I know what a newbie feels like when they start shopping for a 40 for the first time with no background.

RockRunner
01-22-2012, 02:19 PM
I would pass on it for now. The batteries may not hold as long of charge anymore as when new. The lens is OK but heavy, you can get a better lens form Sigma For the money you would spend for that lens. The cases can be had for less than he wants on eBay. Also the camera is to old, you can go to Costco or Sam's and buy an new camera that is ten times better.

Now I still shoot with my Canon 20D and feel it is fine for what I do. I would like to upgrade to get a camera with 1080P movie capability but don't want to spend the money now. You need to write down what you want the camera to do and then see what system fits your budget. Then I would buy the unit that is one step up from there.

And as for what brand to buy...........look for the best deal in either and go from there. they are both great brands and do basicly the same thing. The picture quality is 80%lens and 20% camera and so is the cost nearly in the consumer level to prosumer.

Jenny Cruiser
01-24-2012, 05:41 PM
I've been really happy with my Sony Alpha. It does most everything I need it to, and didn't break the bank. My kit was around 2k new and I got it used for<500 four years ago. I don't think anyone here gives a shiznit about Sony though. You prolly can't go wrong w/Wes' suggestions. You may be happier with a decent point and shoot for that money though. If I were getting into it today I'd be looking for a deal on a D7000. That's an entry level DSLR. You'd be happy with that for a long time. I'll be getting out of entry level limitations as soon as Nikon makes up it's mind on the replacement for the D700. Keeping the Alpha too. :)

xodeuce
01-24-2012, 08:22 PM
I've been really happy with my Sony Alpha. It does most everything I need it to, and didn't break the bank. My kit was around 2k new and I got it used for<500 four years ago. I don't think anyone here gives a shiznit about Sony though. You prolly can't go wrong w/Wes' suggestions. You may be happier with a decent point and shoot for that money though. If I were getting into it today I'd be looking for a deal on a D7000. That's an entry level DSLR. You'd be happy with that for a long time. I'll be getting out of entry level limitations as soon as Nikon makes up it's mind on the replacement for the D700. Keeping the Alpha too. :)

Sony has some cool tech they put in their cameras. The Alpha's semi-transparent mirror that allows the use of phase detection focusing, but lets the light still hit the sensor without the mirror moving, is REALLY trick. It lets them squeeze crazy frame rates out of the camera that you don't get until you're in a >$4k Canon or Nikon. Best of both DSLR and mirrorless.

corsair23
02-06-2012, 01:02 PM
Tripple your price point @ $850 and I have no idea if it is a good deal or not but the email I got said it is 55% off :hill:

Canon EOS Digital Rebel T3i Camera w 18-55mm, 55-250mm IS Lenses, Flash, 16GB, Case (http://www.ebay.com/itm/Canon-EOS-Digital-Rebel-T3i-Camera/300660015296?_trksid=p1468660.m2000036)

corsair23
02-08-2012, 10:29 AM
Here is another one I got via email today...Another claimed 50%+ off :confused:

Canon EOS Digital Rebel T2i 18MP CMOS Digital SLR w/ 18-55 IS Lens and 75-300 II (http://www.ebay.com/itm/Canon-EOS-Digital-Rebel-T2i-18MP-Camera/290668498380?_trksid=p1468660.m2000036)

$630 shipped

Cheeseman
02-08-2012, 12:35 PM
Two things well maybe three. Glass is everything, spend your money on great glass. Whatever you do get an aftermarket book on the camera body. A person really needs to decide how deep into the camera operation they want to go. That truly depends on your photographic knowledge you currently have and then how much you want to learn. And lastly remember the multiplication factor for the lens. Most entry level camera bodies have a 1.4 to 1.5 factor because of the size of the sensor that the picture is recorded from. A 100 mm lens now becomes 150 mm. So when you get into the 300mm lens, very few people can effectively hold it steady when it now becomes 450mm cuz of the factor.

CardinalFJ60
02-08-2012, 03:31 PM
I couldn't agree more! In order to hold my 70-300mm steady at 300mm i need to be shooting at like 1/2000 of a second!!! :D

everything Cheeseman said is SPOT ON. I've had my d300 for years now and still go through the Lantern guide regularly to remind myself of the features.

I might even go as far as to say some of the entry level cameras need you to read the manual even closer since many options are menu driven. I upgraded from the Nikon D40x (still one of my favorites) to the D300 so I could change settings on the fly with buttons and dials.

also think about how heavy this stuff gets. when I borrow a D700 with battery grip and the 24-70mm/2.8 the weight is like 7lbs! :eek: you gotta carry this stuff around.

Caribou Sandstorm
11-21-2012, 07:50 AM
What do you guys think of the Canon DSLR T3? Target has a smokin deal inludes another lens and the wife wants a new camera.

jonharis
11-27-2012, 12:51 PM
What do you guys think of the Canon DSLR T3? Target has a smokin deal inludes another lens and the wife wants a new camera.

Nikon's D5100 is a better camera at that price point. Better yet, the newer D3200 is actually a better camera than the 5100 IMO. Get a good piece of glass.

I bought my mom a T2i and the photos are excellent with decent glass that she already owned.

xodeuce
11-30-2012, 06:21 AM
Nikon's D5100 is a better camera at that price point. Better yet, the newer D3200 is actually a better camera than the 5100 IMO. Get a good piece of glass.

I bought my mom a T2i and the photos are excellent with decent glass that she already owned.

X2 on the good lens. Years ago I didn't really understand how big the image quality impact of the lens quality was. However, after having shot with a lot of different Nikon, Tamron, Tokina, and Sigma glass over the years, I'd now take a 24-70 2.8, or my old Tokina 12-24, on a D3200 over a kit lens on a D600. I've become a fan of trying before buying by renting from borrowlenses.com or lensrentals.com. Both have great customer service, and lots of different options. It's also good if you want to get a lens for a trip that you can't really justify buying.

Rzeppa
06-06-2013, 09:04 PM
I am seriously considering the Nikon D5200 bundle from Sam's Club. It is on sale until the 9th and includes the 18-55 and the 55-200. Many of the reviews I have read have indicated that the 39 point AF is way superior to the 5100's 5 or something.

$979.00 is a couple hundred less for this bundle than I have seen anywhere else.

Comments? If I am going to buy this I need to pull the trigger by Sunday.

CardinalFJ60
06-06-2013, 10:57 PM
that's a nice setup. also check B&H photo to see what they can offer. My latest Popular Photography magazine raved about it.

Hulk
06-07-2013, 12:11 AM
Jeff, that's a good camera with some really nice extras. I think you'll be very happy with it. I have the 55-200 lens (the VR version -- not sure if this is the VR version but I bet it is), and it works really well. With the 16 GB card and the wireless adapter included, the only thing you might want to purchase is a flash and maybe a tripod. You will get many years of use out of this.

Rzeppa
06-07-2013, 09:18 AM
Jeff, that's a good camera with some really nice extras. I think you'll be very happy with it. I have the 55-200 lens (the VR version -- not sure if this is the VR version but I bet it is), and it works really well. With the 16 GB card and the wireless adapter included, the only thing you might want to purchase is a flash and maybe a tripod. You will get many years of use out of this.

Thanks, Matt. It has a built-in flash, and I already have a tripod. And yes, the Nikkor lenses have the VR feature.

My neighbor has the 5100 and really likes how easy the firmware is to use. That means a lot to me too - I have a Pentax P&S which is a nice little camera but a PITA to menu your way in to whatever it is that you want to set up.

Jenny Cruiser
06-10-2013, 04:27 PM
Why not go with the D7000?

Rzeppa
06-10-2013, 05:01 PM
Why not go with the D7000?

Because of the screaming deal on the D5200 bundle.

I pulled the trigger on Friday. I'll post up some images when I get time. Gotta run!

blkprj80
06-13-2013, 07:53 PM
Nice pick for a camera Jeff! :thumb:

Two things I've never regretted buying for my D40 are the speedlight and a remote.
Speedlight works soooo much better than the built-in and saves camera battery.
The remote was a big hit when taking family gathering shots using the delay feature. Plus, it triggered my cousin's D5100 as well, so we had two cameras on tripods firing away simultaneously!

I have a 18-135 sort of odd-ball lens that seems to be my favorite. My only other lens is a 55-200, and you can't "get back far enough" with it if you try to use it anywhere inside. Outdoors, it's a beauty!

First thing, put a UV filter on the front of your lenses. My camera wears a lens cap about 2% of the time, but I never worry about it - it's protected!

I'm looking forward to all the pictures. Play around with depth of field and also take some really small aperture, long exposure shots from a tripod. You can take photos that will amaze us!

I love digital. It gives idoits like me a chance to get a good shot every couple hundred. :hill:

Rzeppa
06-13-2013, 10:48 PM
The remote was a big hit when taking family gathering shots using the delay feature. Plus, it triggered my cousin's D5100 as well, so we had two cameras on tripods firing away simultaneously!

This thing came with a plug-in doo-dad that allows any android or iOS device to work as a remote. I haven't downloaded and installed the app yet but it seems like a cool idea. The DVD that came with the camera showed how you can watch live what the camera is seeing on your Android or iOS device while you decide when to start shooting video or fire off a still shot, or adjust settings on the camera.

Rzeppa
06-22-2013, 03:42 PM
I love digital. It gives idoits like me a chance to get a good shot every couple hundred. :hill:

Right now, the main thing that it has over my old 35mm is the variable ISO settings. Used to be, I was limited to whatever film speed I had in there as far as shutter speeds and aperture settings. Now that is kind of like the 3rd variable in exposure, so I can force a given shutter speed and aperture and let the ISO speed become the variable for exposure.

I'm liking it a LOT. :D