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 Post subject: Need Some Advice
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 12:55 am 
Hi, I have recently become interesting in taking pictures at work. I am a commercial fisherman and hunting guide. I am looking for a dslr camera that is good in low light situations (early morning), and something good for action shots. I also need a camera that will take a decent video because I take almost as many 1-5 minute videos as I do pictures. Brand is not as important to me as price. I am unbiased on brands but I am on a budget. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 11:57 am 
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on a budget is a very wide term, someone takes it as $1500 and someone else takes it as $500, you could specify more, also it would be useful to know if you are close to what are you picturing or far away (pictures of the animals or hunters and fisherman in action)

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 12:21 pm 
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If you want a DSLR, the lens is arguably more important than the body for low light performance, especially if your budget is very limited.

Like bakica said, you should be more specific about how limited a budget you're on as your budget will limit the range of bodies and lenses so any answers we give would be speculative and perhaps not very helpful as we could recommend bodies/lenses that are well above your budget or bodies/lenses that are arguably not as good as your budget will allow.

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DSLRs: Canon EOS 70D, 30D
Lenses: Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM, EF 50mm f/1.8 II, EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 12:53 pm 
what is your budget? I would suggest the Nikon D700,as the cheapest & best performance DSLR for the price.
if that's out of your reach,I would suggest a second hand Canon 5D,but you wouldn't be able to take videos.

So for best performance for early mornings,a full-frame camera is the only option.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 2:29 pm 
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If video is equally important as stills, then I think you may be better off with a camera that can do full, fast autofocus durng video...DSLRs are not a good choice for this type of video (though they are excellent for professional videographers and filmmakers, focus is done manually in those situations, so it is not like what most consumers think of 'video' - most consumers want camcorder style convenience, with fast accurate autofocus). I'd strongly suggest looking at the following possibilities:

1. Sony A33/55/35 - these use a fixed transparent mirror, much like a DSLR except it doesn't move. They've got full APS-C sensors like DSLRs, and are superfast, good in low light, and also can do high-speed phase-detect autofocus while shooting video. They are specifically designed as hybrid stills/video capable DSLR type cameras.

2. Panasonic G3 Micro 4:3 - the newest of the micro 4:3 mirrorless cameras are quite capable - almost up to DSLR level in low light - the M4:3 sensor is just a bit smaller than an APS-C sensor, and much larger than P&S sensors, so they can do well in low light. Like the Sony SLT models above, they are much more capable in video functionality, with normal, camcorder style real time fast autofocus. There are a few other Panasonic models, and several Olympus models, within this range, all worth a look, and all sharing this hybrid capability for stills and video.

3. Sony NEX - Similar to the Micro 4:3 cameras above in that they are mirrorless interchangeable lens systems, these also share the ability to shoot stills and video equally well, with fast autofocus. They use a full APS-C sensor just like DSLRs, and are equal in low light to DSLRs. Both mirrorless systems are quite a bit smaller, and lighter, than DSLRs, but are a bit more limited on lens options.

The Sony A33, A55, or new A35 are probably the best for DSLR-like versatility PLUS video - unlike the mirrorless cameras, they use phase-detect autofocus at all times, have electronic viewfinder or LCD, and take normal DSLR lenses via the standard Sony Alpha mount, rather than a dedicated lens line...this opens up the lens selection to hundreds, rather than a dozen or less.

If video autofocus, or video in general, is less important, then I'd say take a fair look at the normal DSLR offerings from Nikon (D5100), Canon (T3), Sony (A580), and Pentax (KR) on the entry level side - you can get into all of those with a lens or two for under $1000 and get good low light ability and a nice flexible package.

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Justin Miller
Sony DSLR-A580 / Sony 18-250mm / Minolta 50mm F1.7 / Sigma 30mm F1.4 / Tamron 10-24mm / Tamron 150-600mm / Tamron 90mm F2.8 macro / Minolta 300mm F4 APO
Sony A6000 / 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 / 55-210mm F4-6.3 / 10-18mm F4 / 35mm F1.8 / 16mm F2.8 / via manual adapter, lots of Pentax K mount, Konica K/AR mount, and Leica M mount manual lenses

Galleries:
http://www.pbase.com/zackiedawg


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 5:32 pm 
Thank you for the responses. I knew being new to this I wouldn't be specific enough. I don't really want to go over $600. i know this is the lowest of the low but its all Im willing to swing.

Videos don't have to be as important as pictures. I have a little point and shoot camera now but the video quaility is horrible. I just want something that does a decent video so I can show family and friends.

As far as distance it would be from 1-2 feet away or a picture of a boat a few hundred feet away. None of the pictures would be very detail oriented. I just want something that will snap a good clear high quaility picture.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 5:56 pm 
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Location: Boca Raton, FL, USA
With that budget, I'd still recommend some of the ones I did: Panasonic or Olympus micro 4:3, Sony NEX, or Sony A33 would all be doable within your budget, at least with a basic kit lens...all have good overall quality, compactness, decent or excellent at low light, and all can autofocus during video (even if you are using video only sometimes, you still have to decide if you want to manually focus it or not - if you're not skilled with manual focus, you probably will find filming video frustrating without autofocus. A very few DSLRs will autofocus during video, but do so slowly and don't track well. The mirrorless and SLT models above all focus fast and normal).

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Justin Miller
Sony DSLR-A580 / Sony 18-250mm / Minolta 50mm F1.7 / Sigma 30mm F1.4 / Tamron 10-24mm / Tamron 150-600mm / Tamron 90mm F2.8 macro / Minolta 300mm F4 APO
Sony A6000 / 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 / 55-210mm F4-6.3 / 10-18mm F4 / 35mm F1.8 / 16mm F2.8 / via manual adapter, lots of Pentax K mount, Konica K/AR mount, and Leica M mount manual lenses

Galleries:
http://www.pbase.com/zackiedawg


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 6:11 pm 
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For just $600, you won't get very much in the way of a DSLR with video recording (even second hand may be difficult) - for the enthusiast, video recording is quite new on a DSLR so it's not cheap.

Even if you get a DSLR kit for $600, the lens won't be fast enough for good low light performance and with a distance of 1 to 2 feet, the flash may overwhelm your subject. Lowering the shutter speed probably wouldn't be practical either as you'll probably suffer a lot of camera shake if your boat is moving about constantly.

I think one of the EVIL cameras or something like the Sony a33 may be more within your reach from a pricing point of view.

_________________
DSLRs: Canon EOS 70D, 30D
Lenses: Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM, EF 50mm f/1.8 II, EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 6:40 pm 
What would I need to spend in order to do the things i want to do?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 7:37 pm 
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With a good enough lens that gives a reasonably wide field of view (the 50mm f/1.8 might prove a little tight in terms of coverage) and is good in low light, I don't think you should expect much change out of nearly twice your budget if you take the DSLR route. In general, a fast lens and a tight budget are incompatible.

_________________
DSLRs: Canon EOS 70D, 30D
Lenses: Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM, EF 50mm f/1.8 II, EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2011 4:29 am 
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Don't discount the A33 or A55 - it should be more than capable for what you want out of it...it's actually one of the better choices at any budget for your needs. It is very good in low light, it has excellent video with full autofocus, it can track focus and shoot at up to 10 frames-per-second for action or sports, it has a tilting and swivelling LCD for video use and odd angle shooting, it has built in stabilization, and you've got good access to fairly inexpensive used lenses by dipping into the Minolta A-mount line.

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Justin Miller
Sony DSLR-A580 / Sony 18-250mm / Minolta 50mm F1.7 / Sigma 30mm F1.4 / Tamron 10-24mm / Tamron 150-600mm / Tamron 90mm F2.8 macro / Minolta 300mm F4 APO
Sony A6000 / 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 / 55-210mm F4-6.3 / 10-18mm F4 / 35mm F1.8 / 16mm F2.8 / via manual adapter, lots of Pentax K mount, Konica K/AR mount, and Leica M mount manual lenses

Galleries:
http://www.pbase.com/zackiedawg


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:10 am 
Would anyone recommend a D5100?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:44 am 
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you see these days there are canon, nikon, sony,... cameras that offer good image quality and good video recording options, (as justin said sony a33 or a55, or even nikon d5100 or canon 600d) but even if you can fit the body into the price, for low light photography you need a lens that has the aperture of 1.8 or lower, and considering that you are going to photograph both far away subjects as those close by it seems you need 2 lenses, the one for close subjects shouldn't be longer than 35mm, and for those far away it should be at least 200mm.. 35mm f1.8 lenses tend to be cheap, but even than price will go over $600, so you are kinda stuck

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nikon d90 --->af-s dx 18-105mm; tamron 90mm macro

add me up on:

flickr:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/bakica/

deviant art:
http://tbensic.deviantart.com/

----:>bakice ce vladati svjetom<:----


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:47 am 
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Dare I suggest, that you would be better served with a compact camera, rather than a DSLR.

Something like the Canon Powershot G12 or whatever that is similar. I haven`t looked at reviews or specs.
here is Gordon`s review, see verdict for other camera options.
http://www.cameralabs.com/reviews/Canon_PowerShot_G12/

Ultimately making videos with a DSLR is a bit tricky, too easy to get things out of focus, they don`t do that all that well. Uses a lot of memory and then there is processing the video. I would suggest that a video camera maybe more suitable then a DSLR.

The big difference between a DSLR and Compact type camera is depth of field. If big aperture and isolating the subject is important then go DSLR.
Yes DSLR strength is low light ability, faster and better focusing system and obviously the bigger and better lens, but its also easier to take photos that aren`t in focus, due to the small depth of field.
And if you are going down that path you ultimately need to be prepared for a reasonable learning curve, possibly a number of lenses that you need to carry and definitely more $$.

Considering the condition out there as commercial fisherman and then carrying stuff around when hunting, I think that you may be better served by a good compact type camera for your videos and photos.

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Canon Powershot S95, Canon 6D,7D, Canon 40 2.8 STM, Tamron 24-70 2.8 VC, Canon 17-40 L, Canon 15-85, Canon 85 1.8, Sigma 30 1.4, 50mm 1.8, Canon 100 2.8L Macro, Canon 70-300L +Kenko 1.4 Pro 300DGX, Canon 430EX II and RS 4 Classic


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2011 9:40 am 
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Not all DSLRs provide great video, so you would probably be better off getting a seperate camcorder.

I have Canon EF 50mm F/1.8 lens, which is nice and bright, good for low light.

If you want low light photographs, well the higher up the camera is, the better the ISO performance usually is. You will not get as much of that grain that seems to appear everywhere when you shoot in the dark.

This particular lens is controlled by the camera, so you would really want to be using a Canon camera, if you were to get it.

Purchasing used equipment from ebay is a good idea, especially if you are on a budget. There are bargains to be had.

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Canon EOS 500D
Lenses: EFS 18-55mm IS, EF 50mm F/1.8 II

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