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PostPosted: Thu Dec 30, 2010 5:25 pm 
Well, not exactly blind. I lost my vision for several years and very recently had it restored thanks to a whiz of a doctor... It's not perfect 20/20 but it beats walking into walls all the time... :D That being said, I have A LOT of catching up to do!! My last camera was a point and shoot.

I want to dive into photography in a BIG way and grab and save every single image I can, especially of my family!! Think about how you would feel...lol. I am not a pro but I tackle every endeavour with a lot of intensity. I've a graduate degree and LOVE to learn so don't mind a learning curve attached but at the same time, being able to take a decent pic right out of the box would be great too. I am seriously considering buying a 7D or D7000 so I have a camera that I can grow as a photographer with. I'm leaning to the 7D. I have twin sons that are 8 years old and they have a new puppy so static shots are going to be hard to come by and patience with the photographer is going to be slim to none... I wake every morning and marvel at the sunrise, birds in the trees, and my children's faces. I want to save it ALL and can not wait to start.

All that being said, are those choices reasonable? My photography is family stuff, vacations, walk around and see what catches my fancy, indoors antics with the boys, outdoors playing, would love to take beautiful portrait images of them, and to summarize, just a little bit of everything.... I don't mind spending the money on images considering a year ago, my images consisted of blackness with blacker movement in front of it...ugh.

If someone could recommend a really good camera, a couple of great lens to cover all the bases, and a flash for an aspiring "pro-sumer" lol... I sure would appreciate it.

All my best and do me (any yourself) one more favor... go look out the window right now and appreciate what you see. :D


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 30, 2010 5:47 pm 
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First of all welcome and congratulations on getting back the most important of senses. Happy days eh. 8)

I suppose you initially have to decide on your budget (btw, which will soon be blown out of the water! :lol: )

Whichever camera you choose will have `auto` or `P` so you won't need to miss anything while you're learning. :wink:

I've had the D7000 for a couple of months & STILL haven't mastered all the features. ..... I probably never will. :oops:

Maybe you should consider lenses 1st, (quality,prices,availability etc)

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 30, 2010 7:13 pm 
Hi blindbutnowic,

and a warm welcome to the forum!

To make it really simple: there are no "bad" DSLR camera bodies. They can all take award-winning photos in the right hands. As a general rule, the more you pay for a camera body, the more external control (as opposed to software menus with setting you choose on the LCD) you have and the faster it operates. Faster AF, faster start-up time etc.

The advantages of external controls are that you can keep your eye in the viewfinder and make your changes by feel only, in between shots.

Think of it as a form of convenience, if you will.

If you are going to dabble with flash, I would recommend getting a body that has master control of flashes (both 7D and D7000 does). Saves you a few hundred bucks for radio triggers.

From a pure image-quality standpoint, lenses have a lot more influence on the technical image quality: essentially how much detail and how sharp the image can be - and how much light-fall-off at the edges of the lens. But even more importantly, better lenses have larger maximum apertures (low F-numbers) which makes them more light-sensitive and allows them to throw the background out of focus for extra attention on the subject.

A great lens for family-shots and portraits is the Nikon 35mm AF-S F1.8, which comes at around $200-220. The 50mm AF-D F1.8 is also a great
choice for a little more reach and is less expensive at around $120.
If you want a do-everything lens, the Nikon 18-200mm VR, but it's not as light-sensitive and costs $600+ - so a lot really depends on your style as a photographer..what distances you like to operate on and what you want from your images.

I mentioned Nikon lenses - Canon has similar offerings in their lineup.

I don't think any non-professional "need" a Canon 7D or even a D7000 for that matter. The Nikon D90 is an excellent camera that essentially does the same thing for less. But do yourself a favor of handling them - there's much to learn from tactile impression of a camera body.

As for flashes: if you want mobility and use flash as fill in daylight, I swear to the Nikon SB-400, which is compact, fast and powerful enough for fill. Otherwise the larger SB600/SB700 models should provide you plenty of power for indoor shooting in less bright circumstances. Just make sure to reserve a few bucks for a diffuser if you shoot directly at the subjects - otherwise be prepared to always have to angle the light (bounce off wall/ceiling).

Canon's equivalent to the SB600 is the 430-model.

I'm just throwing fairly generic stuff at you here - everything depends on what's important to you.

In my personal opinion (and that's all it is), I would choose Nikon for portraiture/family shots for a couple of reasons:
- easier and more intuitive auto-ISO performance
- more skin-tone friendly color-rendition without customizing colors
- more automatic flash-exposure handling

But if I were a landscape shooter, I'd go for Canon for better micro-details/resolving power and a more neutral color-rendition out of the box.

I wish you the best of luck with your journey back into photography and hope to see some shots from you when you have pulled together your equipment :-)

Cheers!


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 30, 2010 7:57 pm 
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Hi blindbutnowic,

May I add my own warm welcome. 8)

Whichever camera you choose have a think about leaving enough in the budget for a quality compact camera or, if you have capacious pockets, a micro four-thirds model or Sony NEX. There are often situations where having a full sized camera is just not convenient but just because that's the case it doesn't mean that the opportunities to capture those special moments also dry up.

As a starting point maybe one of the last three entries in Gordon's premium compacts Buyer's Guide may be worth a look or maybe the Nikon COOLPIX P7000 if you go for the D7000 or the Canon PowerShot G12 if you go for the 7D. It's a big hit on the budget but the only camera you can take pictures with is the one you have with you at the time.

Bob.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 30, 2010 8:59 pm 
Thank you for the warm welcome Bob and for the advice.

I actually have a pocket size Sony that is doing quite well and I totally agree, if you're out sledding on snow with the kids and are missing a lot of smiles because the "pro-sumer" camera is in the car, then what's the point?? I believe a lot of people miss that one.

To me, cameras are a lot like cars. I have a Ford truck that gets me to the store, takes me on vacation, and allows me to visit friends anytime I want to.... but when I started driving again, I went out and bought a Viper SRT10 because it's just AWESOME cool, not everyone can handle it, and it's just fun because you're no longer "commuting", you're DRIVING. :D It's amazing how much money you can save by sitting around for a few years doing nothing but listening to NPR...lol.

That being said, I believe I have decided on the 7D. Now I just need to figure out lenses, filters?, a flash, etc... Perhaps I should move this over to the Canon portion of the forum??

I'm thinking an EFS 15-85 IS USM for a starter as an all around lens. I'm wondering if an EF 50mm f/1.4 would be redundant for lens number 2. I was thinking it would be great in low light for snapping pics of the boys?? A nice telephoto to round it out would be great. Nothing over 200 would be all that useful to me.

I don't have to have Cannon lenses, if someone has ideas for two or three really good lenses that would cover all the bases, I'm open to the voice of experience.

Thank you in advance for any info you provide. I sincerely appreciate it.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 30, 2010 9:02 pm 
PS- I thanked you other gentlemen as well, but I seem to have made my post disappear, so once again, thank you for taking the time to reply and to help me out. :D


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 30, 2010 9:13 pm 
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Hi, welcome!

If your eyes are still not that great I think youre looking for a big viewfinder camera. I havent read all comments here, but I think youll be very pleased with either the Canon 5D MkI (used) or the 7D. I recommend those because I know the Canon brand the best, but those have a big viewfinder you wont find on the cheaper dSLRs.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 30, 2010 9:25 pm 
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Hi blindbutnowic,

If you have definitely decided on a Canon then yes, it would be best to start a new thread over there with one proviso: you'll find a good number of "what lens" threads in each of the manufacturer's sections and providing you ignore those threads dedicated to full-frame bodies (for practical purposes that's just the 5D line in the Canon section as we don't have too many 1-series threads) you might find all the advice you'll need without starting a new thread. And if you do find a suitable thread then you can always consider adding a post/question to that thread rather than starting over.

Oh, and being a Canon fan I'm hardly going to disagree if you do go for the 7D. By the same logic you outlined above I have a Porsche for driving and a 5D2 for shooting. I could get by without either but heck, they're both fun and I count myself lucky to have them. 8)

Bob.

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Olympus OM-D E-M1 + M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8, Lumix 7-14mm f/4, Leica DG Summilux 15mm f/1.7 ASPH, M.Zuiko Digital 45mm 1:1.8, M.Zuiko Digital ED 75mm 1:1.8.
Leica D Vario-Elmar 14mm-150mm f/3.5 - f/5.6 ASPH.
OM-D E-M5, H-PS14042E, Gitzo GT1541T, Arca-Swiss Z1 DP ball-head.
Astrophotography: TEC 140 'scope, FLI ML16803 camera, ASA DDM60 Pro mount.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 30, 2010 9:40 pm 
I'll do that. I read the 7D section earlier. I didn't see the answers I was looking for, but I'll read it over again. I may have just been a bit confused by all the jargon. I'm glad I made sense with the Viper comment. It seemed logical to me.. :) The 7D really appeals to me. I'm an aviator and something about the bells and whistles and especially the two-axis level function just "clicked" with me. Thank you again for the advice.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 30, 2010 9:48 pm 
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Welcome to the forums!
Any of those cameras are good, and may serve you well for the pictures you want to make. In retrospective, when I take a step back and have a look at my gear, I notice that in fact I’m attaching a body to a lens and not the other way around. Also that from all the money I’ve spent on it, the body weights about a quarter if not less. What I want to say is that in the lenses are a much more limiting factor compared to the body, and you’ll eventually increase your lens count in your bag and the body will do well with any of them. So, my advice, pick one of those cameras, the one that feels better in your hands and leaves some room in the budget for the lenses you need.

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Canon580EXII
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 31, 2010 12:12 am 
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As blindbutnowic has decided on a 7D and it's "on its way" I'll lock this thread and ask that the conversation continues over at A 7D (body only) is on it way :D. Thanks.

Bob.

_________________
Olympus OM-D E-M1 + M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8, Lumix 7-14mm f/4, Leica DG Summilux 15mm f/1.7 ASPH, M.Zuiko Digital 45mm 1:1.8, M.Zuiko Digital ED 75mm 1:1.8.
Leica D Vario-Elmar 14mm-150mm f/3.5 - f/5.6 ASPH.
OM-D E-M5, H-PS14042E, Gitzo GT1541T, Arca-Swiss Z1 DP ball-head.
Astrophotography: TEC 140 'scope, FLI ML16803 camera, ASA DDM60 Pro mount.


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