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PostPosted: Tue Nov 07, 2006 7:21 am 

Last edited by Marydoright on Sun Feb 14, 2010 9:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 07, 2006 7:59 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 08, 2005 3:32 pm
Posts: 9978
Location: Queenstown, New Zealand
Hi Heather, welcome to Cameralabs and thanks for your kind words about our videos and reviews!

Most people who are after a camera that's not too fancy end up with a basic compact, so I salute you for deciding on a DSLR! A lot of people forget DSLRs have great Auto modes which can deliver superb photos with minimum technical effort.

By going for a DSLR, you'll also enjoy faster response, better quality pictures under dim light and the possibility of swapping lenses - all of which will be invaluable when you're shooting your boy's sports events.

The Nikon D50 is a superb value DSLR and definitely one to consider if you're on a tight budget, but the Canon XTi will deliver higher resolution images and is great value for what you're getting.

The Olympus E-500 is also a great camera (and remarkable value for the flexible twin lens kit right now), but there were a few things about it which I personally didn't get on with. We've reviewed all three and many more besides on the site if you want to have a look.

One quick note though - it's easy to turn any digital photo into black and white using your PC or Mac, so I wouldn't worry too much about that. Newer cameras like the XTi do offer digital filters though for their black and white modes though which can make blue skies go black for a dramatic effect. Again though this is something you can apply after the event with your computer if you like.

The Canon Rebel XTi is hard to beat right now - it offers great quality and value, although again if you're on a tighter budget the D50 is a great choice. Bear in mind Nikon is rumoured to be replacing the D50 with the 'D40' in the near future, but it's all rumours right now. In this market there's always a newer model coming up, but the best time to buy is when you're ready for a new camera - and that sounds like you right now!

One thing I'd advise anyone to do though is go into a store and actually pick the cameras you're considering. I guarentee one will look and feel better to you, and that'll be the one to go for. Please do check prices on our site though and consider buying through one of our affiliate stores if the price is right.

A 75-300 lens would also be good second lens to take along to your boy's sporting events, although have a go with one first and see if it'll focus quickly enough. Cheaper lenses can sometimes be a bit slow for this kind of thing and it can be frustrating if you miss your shot.

If you can't stand the idea of carrying two lenses, you might also wish to consider an 18-200 lens which gives you wide angle to telephoto. Sigma makes a good budget model for the Canon, and Nikkor does a great one for Nikon bodies, although it's pricier and in short supply.

Anyway, I hope that's been useful. If there's anything else we can help you with, just shout!

Gordon Laing, Editor

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2006 11:21 am 

Last edited by Marydoright on Sun Feb 14, 2010 9:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 12, 2006 8:07 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 05, 2006 11:08 pm
Posts: 8003
Location: Germany
I'd strongly support Gordon's advice to get your hands on one of the candidates. You know, my wife was quite shocked when she found out how bulky and heavy my new Nikon D80 plus zoom lens was. Carrying something like this around is definitely only for the devoted.
I suggest considering the Panasonic FZ50 (look here for one of Gordon's famous reviews It's much more "bearable" than any DSLR! it weighs only 668g incl the super lens. The body of the Nikon D50 is 540g without a lens - a tele-lens adding another 600g!
Plus the FZ50 gives you optical stabilization which is recommended for shooting telephotos. This is a very upmarket feature that you would otherwise find in the sub 1000$ DSLR segment only with the new Sony A100. PLUS you get an exceptionally flexible 12x tele-zoom build into this smart little camera. This would definitely be a step-up from your current compact plus it's much cheaper than a decent DSLR + super-zoom.
The only drawback in my eyes is the picture quality in low light. This can and will never be the same as with larger sensor DSLRs - although some of them (incl. the Olympus 500) also have weaknesses with low light.

So in my opinion you have to "weigh the weight" of the camera against it's low light abilities and don't forget: if the camera is to bulky for carrying with you, you will miss a lot of nice opportunities to take a pic!

Thomas (beware: Nikon-fanboy and moderator!) My Lens Reviews, My Pictures, My Photography Blog
D810+assorted lenses

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