Looking to buy a Low End DSLR - $500 or so -

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Airforce, Dec 16, 2007.

  1. Airforce macrumors 6502a

    Airforce

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    Jan 12, 2006
    #1
    Any thoughts on the Olympus E-510? One of the "must have features" I want would be live view and a price around $500. Most of my "hobby" has been nature, family photos, and my pets in action. The 10MP offered by the e-510 really impresses me for the price, but I read in one review low light would be a problem for this camera. Currently, I'm just using an old Kodak z760.

    I'd actually like pictures like the one below to turn out decent :p
     

    Attached Files:

  2. marclapierre13 macrumors 6502a

    marclapierre13

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
    #2
    K100D
    K110D
    GX-1S
    GX-1L
    E-510
    Rebel XT

    I have the GX-1S, love it, awesome size, decent battery life, good photo quality and good interface and body shape.
    K100D is also a good choice.
    etc.

    edit. Oh, i saw you want "live view" thats a hard feature to come by in DSLR. If you want live view, than you should get a P&S camera.
    edit #2: I hate the evolt 510, its super bulky, has a crappy interface, I just dislike it alot.
     
  3. PCMacUser macrumors 68000

    PCMacUser

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    #3
    From what I understand, live-view on an SLR lowers the quality of the images due to focusing issues and most photographers don't use it.

    Your demo photo could be improved with better timing and composition rather than a new camera :) Although a constant focus mode would help too, but those aren't so good on the cheaper SLRs. Just bite the bullet and get a Canon 40D, hahahah... ahh sorry, feeling a bit out of it this morning.
     
  4. termina3 macrumors 65816

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    TX
    #4
    I think you'll find your photography will improve if you improve… more so than going out and buying a dSLR. While I suggest getting a dSLR for the short lag times, the picture you posted seems to be more a victim of your (to be rude and blunt) inabilities as a photographer–not your camera.
     
  5. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

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    Feb 19, 2005
    #5
    Many have loved the Oly that you're asking about. The problem with reviews is they're only as good as the reviewer and their abilities to do true test shots. I hardly pay attention to reviews when I buy to be honest. That said, since you don't currently own lenses you can choose pretty much any brand you want. I would go to a camera store and check out each camera but in the end, since you're looking to spend less than $500 I would certainly direct you to some use kits. You can find a D70 with at least one lens for that price. Likewise for Canon and Oly no doubt.
     
  6. marclapierre13 macrumors 6502a

    marclapierre13

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    #6
    Cute dog though :)

    Anyways, they are right. The composition isnt all that great. Personally, I think the photo is fine for a fun, quick shot, but cropping it would make it look way better. Also, you should try to fill the frame a little more. And although some times its ok to have the subject in the middle, you should experiment and put it on a different side of the frame. Do that, and zoom in more and get the subject to fill the frame more, and it would have been way better.

    OK, sorry, went off into a critique lol.
     
  7. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

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    May 29, 2007
    #7
    If you are going the dSLR route, you will ultimately have much better selection/choices in terms of lenses, flash, accessories, etc. if you stick with Canon or Nikon. Once you pick a DSLR brand, that's what you have to stick with.

    Live mode is rare in dSLRs (I think the new $1800 Nikon D300 might have it), and really pretty useless anyway. Better to have a good screen (like a Katz Eye) for your viewfinder if the standard one isn't good enough for you. I have 20K+ shutter actuations on my Nikon D200 and have never longed for live view.
     
  8. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

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    #8
    The Canon 40D has it as well ($1300 MSRP). The only "argument" for it would be a slightly increased fps rate when doing rapid shots. Since the 40D's already at 6.5 fps, what would I realistically gain from maybe 7 fps that I didn't have at the fractionally slower response? Unless you need some serious sports or action photographic capability (then you're talking the 5D at 10+fps and $4500, but hey, it's got live view, too!), I agree it's more of a consumer feature being translated upwards in the respective lines.

    Yeah, if live view is critical, go with a P&S. It doesn't appear in dSLRs until the higher end (AFAIK).
     
  9. marclapierre13 macrumors 6502a

    marclapierre13

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    #9
    the e-510 does have it I believe but like I said, that camera sucks.
     
  10. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

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    #10
    How does live view help increased frame rate? I shoot motorsports, and even if I upgraded to a D300 with 8 fps (using the extra battery grip), I would still never use the live view. In fact, I can see using that instead of the normal viewfinder making it harder to get good panning technique, since you hold the body and lens farther away from you.

    Putting live view in dSLR cameras is a marketing gimmick if you ask me. Nothing more.
     
  11. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

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    #11
    The mirror is already locked up and stays that way through the shooting cycle. Each shot takes a fractionally shorter length of time, hence a higher fps. As I said earlier though, I doubt it's enough to make a substantial difference (though I haven't seen any comparisons yet). I'm speaking only of the Canons, but I would presume that Nikon's implementation does the same mechanically.
     
  12. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

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    #12
    And I don't think it'll help if you have to hold the camera farther away to use live view, because then it's less stable for tracking moving objects and preventing motion blur. Having the extra fps buys you nothing in that case.

    Still think it's just a marketing gimmick, to get consumers buying dSLRs when a P&S may be all they need.
     
  13. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

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    #13
    I wasn't disagreeing in any sense, in fact, I think you are completely correct. I was merely speaking to the functionality, not usefulness or value.
     
  14. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

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    #14
    I realize that.

    Just wanted to make my point clear for the benefit of anyone who thinks live view is an advantage over a good viewfinder. I think that assumption is due to the fact that viewfinders in P&S cameras really suck.
     
  15. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

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    #15
    Maybe one of the biggest factors in my returning to SLR's!

    Back OT, the OP should first decide on what features or capabilities they have to have (and why), and then look at cameras that fill that need. I believe a lot of folks spend way too much $$ on dSLR's and never move beyond the kit lens, built-in flash, or the green box.

    There are some really good P&S cameras out there that will knock your socks of, image-wise. Most of the photograph's quality, though, is in the person taking the photo, not what they took it with.

    Hey, I've got some pretty nice gear, but I still take lousy shots (to me, anyway).
     
  16. Airforce thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Airforce

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    Jan 12, 2006
    #16
    Well, it's a crop of a crop. I had to kick my wife out of the picture :p My problem right now is that this camera is aging(by aging I mean, it's having some problems that would cost more to fix than replace :p). I'd like something more fun to work with and learn. I figured a low end DSLR would be just that. I guess I could live without live view.
     
  17. Westside guy macrumors 603

    Westside guy

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    #17
    I think you'll find that your camera holding technique will be significantly better using a viewfinder rather than using live view out at arms length. That in itself will lead to better pictures.
     
  18. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

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    #18
    Once you start "looking through the lens," you'll wonder why you ever bothered with it!
     
  19. marclapierre13 macrumors 6502a

    marclapierre13

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    #19
  20. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

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    #20
    I'm really good at taking lousy pictures. But it's that occasional gem that makes it worthwhile.
     
  21. fart macrumors regular

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    #21
    get a used 10D or 20D and a 50mm 1.8. Older stuff, but can be had at amazing prices.
     
  22. SLC Flyfishing Suspended

    SLC Flyfishing

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    Portland, OR
    #22
    Second vote for the K100D only I'd recommend the "K100D super" instead of the regular K100D. It has the contacts for SDM lenses which will be the future for all Pentax lenses, (although I read that the new DA* lenses also have a screw drive for non SDM compatible cameras). The K100D super will have a screw drive for older lenses and the contacts for SDm if you someday decide to get an SDM lens. The Nikon alternative (D40 or D40x) are nice too, I'm not a fan of Canon and can't recommend any of their entry level cameras.

    I think contrary to what some have said that you will improve with the use of an SLR camera. Not because it will make you a better photographer, rather because it will make you want to learn to be a better photographer. The image quality you'll get from one of these is not even comparable to a regular p&s camera.

    good luck with it!

    SLC
     
  23. ChrisA macrumors G4

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    #23
    Why would you want "live view"? Kind of defeats the whole purpose of an SLR if you ask me. Also it seriously limits your choices. Why not get one of the really nice Point and Shoots.

    Is your $500 budget for the entire system. Are you going to buy a lens to go with the camera? And what about later what other lenses will you want in a few years? If if turns out you want some Nikon lens next year you'd better have bought a Nikon body. Same with any brand. You have to plan ahead look what you might want to get next, switching brands later is expensive. Pentax is a good brand too but with any brand just make sure you want to be buying that brand lenses and body upgrade/replacements.

    If you only have a $500 budget for the entire system one option is the used camera market, or better new body used lens(es). The bodies change fast and people replace them after a few years but lens technology does not change and decade old lenses still work fine, as well as new ones.
     
  24. Airforce thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Airforce

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    Jan 12, 2006
    #24
    My budget for the body and lenses is $500. I'm not the type of person to go used on electronics, so I think I will just hold off on this purchase. Thanks for the help folks.
     
  25. gamerz macrumors 6502

    gamerz

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    Oct 2, 2006
    #25
    I am also looking at getting a DSLR for my myself, I'll probably end up going out on boxing day and picking one up. As for camera type, I haver heard great things about the Nikon D40, and Canon XT, also the steps up of those, which would be the 40x, and the XTi. Another good one to look at is the Pentax K100d, which is a great price, and has auto focus, correct me if I am wrong.

    Anyways, I'll still need to do my research, im still leaning towards the Nikon D40, or D40x is there is a sweet deal :p
     

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