Noob Question regarding DSLR purchase (something like Canon 5D?)

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by NewSc2, Mar 14, 2007.

  1. NewSc2 macrumors 65816

    Jun 4, 2005
    New York, NY
    A couple months ago an acquaintance brought his Canon 5D camera over.

    I was totally floored by the pictures it took indoors, the shutter speed, etc. The only other DSLR i'd ever played with was my dad's old Olympus e-20, and I don't recall it having such stunning performance. I had one of those small Canons (S400?), and now own a Sony Cybershot T9. They're fine for daytime use, but I really see its limits (bad flash, slow speed, tiny lens).

    I'm looking to purchase a DSLR for hobby use. I've been reading reviews on dpreview and other sites, and I see all the comparison photos but I don't care that much about detail.. yet. For now I just want a camera with a bigger lens that can take good indoor shots without flash.

    Will any current DSLR do this? I'm looking at Canon 20d's and Digital Rebel series cameras.
  2. Mydriasis macrumors 6502


    Mar 17, 2005
    All the cameras you mentioned have really good performances in high iso. Therefore if buy a fast lense you should have no problem taking good pictures inside w/o a flash. (I am assuming they will be handheld)

    But for more practical advice... set a price limit...subtract at least half for the lense...and then take a look at what cameras remain an option.

    The lens will last a long time but your camera will be out of date before you know it. Plus a good lens is a must for sharp accurate images. Get the best lens you can and a decent camera now. Upgrade the camera later.
  3. Mantat macrumors 6502a

    Sep 19, 2003
    Montréal (Canada)
    Just to make sure you arent disapointed... You wont get the same result with anything less than a 5D. This is a pro level camera using a full frame sensor. It perform extremely well but cost 3x more than a rebel... You get what you pay for!

    btw, I am getting a 5D soon ;-)
  4. carbonmotion macrumors 6502a


    Jan 28, 2004
    San Francisco, CA
    its all about the photographer too
    i've seen some pretty terrible 5d pics
  5. Mantat macrumors 6502a

    Sep 19, 2003
    Montréal (Canada)
    Like you can take good picture with a P&S... Does that mean that PS are better than SLR? No. It is so obvious that the knowledge of the photographer is the critical factor that it shouldnt be stated in every single email.

    But right out of the box in the hand of the same person, a 5D will make much better picture than any PS you can find (including the Leica...). The problem is, and I have seen it countless time, that people buy a 3000$+ body and use a 300$ lens on it while it should be the other way around! While on many PS, more $ is spent on the zoom lens, hence better color/sharpness.
  6. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    First you describe the LENS you want then you ask if there is a camera like that. Yes, of course there is. Buy that lens you want and then buy what ever camera body you like that fits the lens. ANY camera body that fits that "bigger lens" will do fine. Which body does not matter much. Most people select a body based on the size of their bank account. That's as good a method as any. But with lenses, do pick them carefully because they have the most effect on the final image.

    From what you are saying, you want a "fast" prime or a "fast" zoom. The faster zooms tend to be around f/2.8 while the primes go to f/1.4 or about two stops faster.
    These big, fast lenses are not as cheap as the low-end consumer quality stuff that canon also sells but for someone who knows the difference it is well worth it. Makes the difference between getting the shot you want and not getting it. From what you say, you will want either a zoom in the range of 17-55mm f/2.8 or a 50mm f/1.4 or a 35mm f/2.0. Either of those will be good at indoor existing light photography. You may even want all three.
    If you are doing existing light work, don't buy any lens slower than f/2.8

    What I'd recommend is to pick out a lens and then pick out a couple more that you can plan on buying later, maybe next year. Also pick out a stobe. None of the on-camera strobes are any good. Look at Nikon as well as Canon. You may find you like Nikon Lenses better. THen after you have the important parts of the system linned up. Look at your bank balance and buy a DSLR body that will fit the lenses and strobe you like
  7. sjl macrumors 6502


    Sep 15, 2004
    Melbourne, Australia
    Bigger in what sense? Physically big doesn't necessarily mean better - imagine lugging one of these around, for example. Fantastic lens for what it does, but hideously expensive, and extremely specialised (and definitely no good for indoor shots without flash - or even with flash). Conversely, the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 is a very small lens physically, very light, very cheap, but gives excellent performance (assuming the focal length works for what you want to shoot.)

    Bigger zoom range? Canon has the EF 28-300mm, but again, it's hideously expensive, and probably won't do what you want - it's not going to do a good job on indoor shots without flash, in all likelihood.

    Your best bet, based upon what you're saying, is to look at either zooms with f/2.8 constant aperture (which is as fast as zooms go these days), or primes with f/2.0 or faster aperture. Alternatively, an f/4 aperture zoom with image stabilisation (like the Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS) might be good enough - depends on how fast the subject is moving in the indoor environment. These are not cheap options in any event. The 5D will go very nicely with any of those lenses, but combine the cost of the lens with the body, and it may break your budget. A crop body, like the 30D or 400D, makes the focal lengths a bit less convenient (unless you spring the money for the 17-55mm f/2.8 - note that that's 17, not 18; very big difference between the 17-55mm and the 18-55mm!), but may suit your budget a bit better.

    Good luck!

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