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 Post subject: A choice of three
PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2007 1:04 am 
Hello,

Me
I am new to the world of SLR's and Lens's. I currently use a simple pocket digital camera and would like to hop into the DSLR world!

What i will be doing
I wont be doing anything two serious and I would like a camera that will be easy for me to use, but will have some nice features to play around with when i advance. I will preferably just be using one lense for general purpose such as landscapes, buildings, close ups, animals people etc..

The problem/question
I have read all the reveiws of the Nikon D40x, Canon EOS 400D and the Sony Alpha A100...Help, which one! I like the idea of anti dust that the sony and canon has, and i like the idea of the Anti shake that the sony has. I will probably only be using the standerd lense and so would these features actually make much difference for me? I like the idea that the nikon has help features and seems good for beginners.

I really need some help as i am a complete dummy and do not know which one to go for! Price is an issue and i dont really want to go much over the £400 mark.

Im currently in canada but live in the UK. I want to buy one of these cams out here so i can use it for the rest of my holiday but will it be better for me just to wait. Im a bit worried about the power adapter and warranty issues.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2007 4:00 am 
Hi tobywuk,

I think that the Sony A100 would be a good choice because the of the buit in image stabilization, the anti dust feature wont be very important as you'll be sticking with the one lens and therefore wont be removing it.
One thing to watch out for on the Canon 400D is that the kit lenses are not of the greatest quality and because you plan to use the same lens for everything you will need a good general purpose lens and I cant think of any suitable canon lenses that would be in your budget and provide a good general purpose coverage.(anyone correct me if im wrong)

With the D40x, It is a great camera for beginners and the help option would be very useful, also you should consider getting it with the 18-135mm lens instead of the 18-55 because it provides a much more flexible range and is of better quality.

Hope this helps


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2007 6:28 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 08, 2005 3:32 pm
Posts: 9975
Location: Queenstown, New Zealand
Hi tobywuk, welcome to the Cameralabs forums!

I'll say just two things (for now!):

1: None of the anti dust systems are 100%, so don't choose a camera based on it.

2: The look and feel are VERY important, so go into a store and pick up all three to see which feels best to you.

Gordon


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2007 10:02 pm 
I have gone into a shop and tried out all three. I think i have narrowed it down to the sony A100 and the nikon D40x

Im leaning towards the sony because it has the image stabalisation built into the body and the kit lens that comes with it seems to be better an have more zoom. On the other hand I liked the nikon but the AF in the lense and having to spend more money when purchasing lenses with this feature put me off.

Can anyone give me there personal opinions and recommendations on which you think is the better out of these two cameras?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2007 10:14 pm 
I personally like the D40x better. For images I've seen from both, the D40x seems better.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2007 11:26 pm 
For you I would go A100, because it has anti-shake, will AF with all lenses you buy(if yu buy more) and incase you do, it has anti-dust. Seems kinda obvious what to go for. Even though I am a Nikon owner, in your case the A100 seems best.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2007 9:33 pm 
both feel nice and i have played with both, but So far:

Nikon D40X

-shutter sound is satisfying
-possibly feels nicer to hold/use but not much difference to sony
-menu system is ment to be nice for beginners

-Special more expensive lenses are needed
-kit lens does not have as much zoom as the sony's
-No image stability, is this a big downfall?

Sony A100
-Built in Auto Focus seems a very good advantage
-lens cleaning systems seems useful
-this camera seems to be comparable to overall more expensive and better camera's?

-Shutter sound not as satisfying


I am really torn between these two camera's and for what i will be doing it probably wont make much difference so i could do with some advice. What are your opinions on what i have said?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2007 11:36 pm 
tobywuk wrote:
I am really torn between these two camera's and for what i will be doing it probably wont make much difference so i could do with some advice. What are your opinions on what i have said?


Modern Nikkor lenses have AF-S (internal motor). Can you name a Nikkor lens that you absolutely need, that is not an AF-S?

The Nikon D40X is more affordable. It will do anything you need it to. The Nikon shutter release sound - and I'm glad someone mentioned this - is great; it makes you want to keep taking photos.

I'm very happy with my Nikon. One of the best investments I ever made.

This is of course a personal opinion, but the Sony A100 is just outright ugly.

As for the sensor cleaning device (and not a lens cleaning device), if you intend to keep the same lens on all the time or even almost all of the time, why do you need it?

Stabilisation on the sensor seems a good idea, but wouldn't you rather see the effect of stabilisation as you look through the viewfinder? Nikon offers a wide variety of stabilised (VR) lenses.

Do yourself a favour and get the Nikon D40X.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2007 12:28 am 
If i get a Nikon D40x, Will image stabalisation be something that I will miss or wish that I had? Will it be noticeable in my pictures with the 18-55 kit lens or a 18-200 lens I will not be using a tripod.

Is this AF-S feature in the lens needed for it to auto focus?

If i was to buy an 18 - 200 lens for the nikon D40x, will it be much more expensive to buy one for this camera with this AF-S feature than it would be to buy one for the sony with out AF-S?

How easy is it to manually clean a sensor on a camera or how much would it cost to get it cleaned by someone in a shop?

What sort of memory card does both these camera's take?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2007 12:36 am 
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Joined: Sat Sep 30, 2006 4:30 pm
Posts: 9811
Location: UK
Hi tobywuk,

May I add my welcome to the forum. The old rule of thumb we used before IS/VR was thought of was to aim for a shutter speed "faster" than the focal length of the lens used. So, if you have a reasonably stable hand then for a focal length of 200mm a shutter speed of 1/200th of a second or faster will usually suffice. That rule of thumb doesn't work so well at short focal lengths as using a shutter speed of 1/18th second at 18mm means you are likely to see motion blur from your subject but exactly the same issue would apply if you used that shutter speed with an image stabilised lens.

Bob.

_________________
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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2007 2:22 am 
Do you need image stabilization? Bob’s point is well taken: there are ways to live without it. Will image stabilization make a difference? Yes, Yes, Yes! It’s not a cure-all for shaky hands but it makes hand held shooting fun. I am a new Nikon owner, but one of the reasons I like my Nikon D50 is because I bought a Nikkor VR lens (with image stabilization) to go with it. Also, buying a camera is always a compromise – even if you have lots of money.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2007 2:25 am 
tobywuk wrote:
If i get a Nikon D40x, Will image stabalisation be something that I will miss or wish that I had? Will it be noticeable in my pictures with the 18-55 kit lens or a 18-200 lens I will not be using a tripod.


If you use the 18-200 you will have image stabilisation assuming you use the nikkor 18-200VR or the sigma 18-200 OS so IS won't be something you miss.

Quote:
Is this AF-S feature in the lens needed for it to auto focus?


The D40x requires AF-S lenses to autofocus, you could also use Sigma's HSM lenses.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2007 2:29 am 
that nikkor 18-200VR lens will cost more than the camera. I think choosing is going to be a case of actually going into the shop and just deciding which one to go for by the way it feels.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2007 2:53 am 
hi again. Your point is well taken, that good lenses are expensive. I found that a lens that justifies the qualilties of the camera costs at least as much as the camera -- otherwise you loose the camera's potential. I think most people discover this about (most) kit lenses eventually. Also, the ability to select the lens you want is part of why you are going DSLR. I think you're right to check out feel -- it's hard to like a camera that doesn't feel right.

addendum: I wanted to modify what I said somewhat -- With the exception of primes, adaquate lenses usually start around $400-$500, which which is not as much as a D80 body, but it is close to the cost of a D40. Image stabilized lenses will cost about $250-$300 more.

However, many people are happy with their kit lenses -- it all depends upon your photographic needs.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2007 1:17 pm 
If you haven't already done so, see Gordon's review of the Nikkor VR 18-200, and also his Nikkor lens group test. There are videos at the end of each one.

Keep in mind that if you want to go for the Nikkor 18-55, that's a perfectly sound choice. It's a great lens that will get you started and allow you to start taking great photos straight away. It's also quite affordable.

Before you buy, decide what your needs are, in terms of photo subjects. I'm sure many people here will gladly share their experiences with different lenses and help you with your choice.

Lastly, welcome to the forum. :)


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