Keep Sony Alpha A300 or go for a Canon (or something else)? ...kinda complicated...

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by LoneWolf121188, Aug 5, 2008.

  1. LoneWolf121188 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 7, 2007
    Longmont, CO
    So, long story short, I've always been interested in getting a DSLR (one of my friends has a Canon XTi and I LOVE using it) but could never justify the price. Then, all of a sudden, a Sony A300 happened to fall into my lap (my dad got it as a gift, but he knows next to nothing about photography, so he gave it to me :D ). Now, I've been reading some reviews on it, and it seems as though the XTi takes the crown in this entry-level category. Shooting speed is definitely a factor for me, and the Sony does ~2.5 fps while the Rebel does 3.5. Image quality looks a little nicer on the Rebel too, IMO. So my original thought was to sell the A300 and go for an XTi. I'm also willing to chip in a bit of money and maybe get an XSi. But here's where it gets interesting.

    It turns out that history repeats itself in odd ways. Specifically, the exact same thing happened to my dad about 20 years ago, before I was born. He got a Minolta SLR camera with a collection of lenses as a gift somewhere, and never really touched it. So now we have a few Minolta lenses that apparently work on the Sony Alphas! Specifically, I've found a 100-300 zoom lens and a 16mm fisheye. I have no idea how much these are worth, but I'm guessing its at least as much as the camera. We might even have a few more in storage somewhere.

    So here's the question: do I keep the A300 and use the lenses I've got, or sell everything and get a nice XTi or XSi setup?
  2. Fiasco macrumors regular


    Dec 1, 2007
    New York, NY, USA
    With the Sony you have access to some nice Minolta glass that can be had for a steal nowadays. I would say stick with the Sony, master it, and make it work for you to get the results you want.

    As far as the image quality being better on an XTi than your a300, I think that's just "placebo effect". The a300 makes some quality images, I know a few people who use it, and use it very well I might add.

    The a300 does 3fps so honestly the Rebel isn't any better speedwise. If speed is of primary concern, save up some money and bypass the Rebels altogether, go for a 30D or 40D.

    Basically, what I'm saying here is that it isn't worth it to switch DSLR systems to essentially get the same or very similar performance. I would only switch systems if it meant getting a substantial performance benefit over my current system.
  3. ProwlingTiger macrumors 65816


    Jan 15, 2008
    Stick with the 300. With the lenses you have access too, and the 300 is a great camera with a lot of stuff you can tap into. I cant see justifying selling all the lenses and camera to get a comparable-ish model. I think with time, as Fiasco said, you can squeeze better image quality out of the 300.
  4. blackstone macrumors regular

    Dec 12, 2005
    Washington, DC
    Agreed! It's a waste of money to switch systems only to get another camera with basically the same specs. I would stick with the A300 and use the lenses you have; if you find yourself pining for faster shot-to-shot times or faster AF, then you can always upgrade to the A700 or its successor.
  5. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    This is such a minor feature that it makes no difference. Even if you are shooting action or sports the best shots are not done using this machine gun like. for example basketball. You need to get the shot when the subject is at the top of its arc and motionless. Even at 5 FPS you will likely get one shot to early and another to late. Better to just get one shot that is spot on.

    A good reason to go with Canon (or Nikon) is because you want to buy a specific expensive lens. Buying one of these $1,800 gadgets can tie you to a camera brand almost for life because you will be buying bodies to fit your expensive optics and then lenses to fit those bodies.

    Why not simply use the Sony/Minolta system? Even if you do decide to sell it, sell it next year. use it now and you will learn a lot about photography and if you really d have a lasting interest in it. Make your self shoot 5,000 frames before you buy one more thing. After shooting a few thousand frames and reading some books you will be able to make an informed decision without having to ask here.

    You want image quality? Load some film into the old Minola body. In terms of pure quality, digital has not yet caught up to where film was 30 years ago. You can't beat those old Kodachromes.
  6. compuwar macrumors 601


    Oct 5, 2006
    Northern/Central VA
    1fps isn't going to make or break anything.

    I doubt you could tell the shots apart in 8x10 prints of the same subject with both cameras.

    Before you go off spending money on switching, shoot with what you have and see what does and doesn't work for you- then you'll know for sure what features are important and hopefully have enough experience to judge the differences. Shoot for three months, then see how things look- the camera landscape may also have changed by then in interesting ways.
  7. RainForRent macrumors 6502


    May 31, 2006
    Greenville, SC
    I bought an a300 to use with my old Minolta glass I inherited from my dad. Keep with it, those old Minolta lenses are fantastic. The 100-300 is nice, but look into the 70-210 known as the "beercan"– named because its the same size as a tallboy. It's really a fantastic and extremely well-built lens. And that 16mm fisheye sounds NICE. I've always used Minolta cameras, so maybe I am biased. Enjoy, explore and have fun.

Share This Page