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Author Topic: Advice on Camera  (Read 4330 times)

usekstroemd

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Advice on Camera
« on: January 09, 2011, 01:59:57 PM »
I have been following your discussions on this forum for a while to learn more. I'm doing research to get a good camera for our daughters birthday. She is very serious about this, but I know close to nothing about cameras.

I have been looking at the 7D, but I can see it has been on the market for some time. I do not want to buy old tech.

Please come up with some nice advice about cameras and lenses, I'm looking at spending about 5k for a body and maybe 2-3 lenses.

bvukich

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Re: Advice on Camera
« Reply #1 on: January 09, 2011, 04:03:28 PM »
What type of photography does she do?

unruled

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Re: Advice on Camera
« Reply #2 on: January 09, 2011, 05:05:06 PM »
that is a -very- serious budget.

is this gonna be her first SLR? if so, I might suggest starting with a cheap body such as the 500d/550d, and perhaps even just 1 lens to start with if she is gonna be learning the ropes. Overwhelming someone with a huge ton of gear and a very highend camera is not the best way to learn imho. I think you have to grow into it and expand on your gear as you get better.

that said, if you really are set on the 5k on gear.. i would suggest a 5d mk ii + a few lenses... unless she's a sports/wildlife shooter.

dyckim

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Re: Advice on Camera
« Reply #3 on: January 09, 2011, 08:37:42 PM »
Yes. I suggest 5d mark ii (2300 USD). For lens you must, absolutely need a 50 1.4 prime (350 USD), either a 24-105 f4 or a 24-70 2.8 (950, 1300 USD Respectively), and maybe 70-300 l or a 70-200 f4 or 70-200 2.8 is mark i

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Re: Advice on Camera
« Reply #4 on: January 09, 2011, 08:56:52 PM »
I have been following your discussions on this forum for a while to learn more. I'm doing research to get a good camera for our daughters birthday. She is very serious about this, but I know close to nothing about cameras.

I have been looking at the 7D, but I can see it has been on the market for some time. I do not want to buy old tech.

Please come up with some nice advice about cameras and lenses, I'm looking at spending about 5k for a body and maybe 2-3 lenses.

If your daughter is serious about a camera, listen to her.  She likely knows what she wants.  Consider renting a camera and lens that she is interested in.  $5000 is a lot to invest for a starter, a months rental would be reasonable before making a final choice.

Neither I nor anyone else can make a reasonable recommendation for equipment without knowing her experience level, and what kinds of things she wants to photograph.  If she doesn't know, start small and then get the equipment that she needs to expand her photography as she gains experience.

If she is planning on attending photography school, they usually start with film cameras and progress to digital.  They will tell her what to get for her classes.  For serious photography, you need a serious computer, monitor, and software, so allocate money for that, its easy to spend $2500 and up on a pc and software. 

bvukich

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Re: Advice on Camera
« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2011, 10:32:51 PM »
Neither I nor anyone else can make a reasonable recommendation for equipment without knowing her experience level, and what kinds of things she wants to photograph.  If she doesn't know, start small and then get the equipment that she needs to expand her photography as she gains experience.

This x1000.

Given a whole lot more information, we could give a slightly less ill informed recommendation; but we're still working with second hand information.  The question is no less complex than "what type of vehicle should I get", or "where should I live".

NotABunny

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Re: Advice on Camera
« Reply #6 on: January 10, 2011, 02:53:59 AM »
If you want to spend that kind of money for a body, you should also have a budget for a professional display (like USD 1000...2000, preferably a package with a calibrator). If she doesn't have a good display, she would not understand what level of quality the camera can deliver (and she might become disappointed and forget about photography).

For a body, if you don't want to buy old technology, you have either EOS 7D or EOS 1D4 (or Nikon equivalent). EOS 5D2 is at the end of its lifetime (a new iteration will be announced either this spring or autumn), but it has the low-noise advantage (good for low light, due to its full-frame sensor) over the other two.

If she is serious about photography, don't waste time with entry level gear. Of course, this means she is *serious*, not "oh, this so cute".

The 1D4 is right in your budget, but it's pretty large and heavy (compared to 7D and 5D2). Top of technology, but would she really want to carry that kind of weight all the time?

As far as lenses go, (again) for that kind of money, go with L-lenses. But here you can get no good advice without knowing what she wants to photograph. Is it close-ups, full-figure people, macros, landscape, fast action, low light? If you want something rather general, for serious people, 24-70 F2.8 is that kind.

neuroanatomist

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Re: Advice on Camera
« Reply #7 on: January 10, 2011, 06:09:04 AM »
Surprising her with $5K of gear might not be the best bet...I suspect it will be impossible to determine what she wants/needs without her figuring out what you're about to do, so I'd suggest just talking to her, or consider getting her a good book on photography and tucking $5K worth of B&H Photo gift cards into the pages (B&H is one of the most reputable photo dealers in the USA and they have everything one might need - if you're not in the USA, others can likely recommend better in-country shops).

Concur with the comments about knowing what she likes to shoot.  Here's a perfect example:

The 1D4 is right in your budget... Top of technology...

The 1DIV is a top-of-the-line camera, but if you find out that her favorite photographic subject is ultrawide angle landscapes, the 1DIV is a pretty bad choice because of it's APS-H sensor size.
EOS 1D X, EOS M, and lots of lenses
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unfocused

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Re: Advice on Camera
« Reply #8 on: January 10, 2011, 08:15:47 PM »
I absolutely agree with those who advise against making this decision for her.

There are some cases where a surprise is nice and others where it is not. A camera is a tool and like any tool, the person who is going to use it needs to have some input into what they are getting.

You mentioned a 7D. Did that idea come from her? If so, maybe she already knows what she wants. The 7D is not old technology – it is Canon's top end crop-sensor camera and you can safely buy it without worrying about it becoming obsolete.

If the idea did not come from her, then I kind of like the suggestion of a gift certificate from either B&H or Adorama if you are in the U.S. (Both highly reputable).

Frankly, with a $5,000 total budget, a 7D is a pretty good choice. It's a great camera, but it will leave you with enough in the budget for a lens or two and some necessities.

While $5,000 sounds like a lot of money, it can go very fast when you are talking about camera equipment. Not only do you need to consider lenses, but there are lots of other items that become necessities depending on what her interests are. Sports, street photography, nature, portraits, photojournalism – each requires different equipment. Some basics though that almost everyone needs in addition to camera and lenses are a good quality bag or photo backpack (or both); a good solid tripod; a quality strobe that is matched to the camera; extra memory cards, batteries, etc.  It's easy to drop $1,000 or more on these items alone.

If it is hard to recommend a camera body, it's impossible to intelligently recommend lenses without knowing her specific interests. If she's dropping hints about a 7D, try to extract a little more information from her about lenses. Ultimately, the 7D will get replaced, but the lenses will last much longer and will represent the real investment and expense.

Bottom line: cameras don't make good "surprise" gifts. If she cares enough about photography for you to spend $5,000 to get her started, then she probably already knows pretty much what she wants.
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Policar

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Re: Advice on Camera
« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2011, 08:49:50 PM »
Let her pick herself or ask what kind of stuff she'll be shooting.  For sports, landscapes, and portraits there are distinct "best" lenses and cameras--and even past that point it's a matter of taste.

It's like asking what brushes to buy a painter.  It depends on the artist's preferences and what subject matter he or she paints.

Camera bodies get outdated fast.  Lenses stay current for many years.  But one camera body can be awfully flexible, whereas one's preferences in lenses evolves over time (at least for me, but I'm a beginner to photography; it sounds like she's not and should know what she wants).  If I had the money, I would be all about the 5DII and L zooms, or either of the 85mm primes for portraiture.  The 5D's technology is older than the 7D's and it has issues with autofocus and shoots slower, but its only slightly higher megapixel count belies far superior image quality when coupled with good lenses.  Plus it looks really serious.  The 7D is nice, though, but its interface impresses more than its image quality (which is not substantially better than the entry level, which is to say still very good and far better than film ever was, as much as I hate to admit it).
« Last Edit: January 10, 2011, 08:52:23 PM by Policar »

revup67

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Re: Advice on Camera
« Reply #10 on: January 11, 2011, 02:22:13 AM »
Surprising, out of all these posts a 580 EXII flash was omitted.  The built in flash is rather meager on the 7D or others with built in flash) and I use it seldom as it can overwhelming and provides minimal flexibility.  You can really get some well lit photos outdoor or indoor with this flash and it should not be omitted with that size budget.  A lot of folks are fearful about flash but this flash could make or break a potentially good photo.

The 7D is a great choice especially with 5K total budget.

The best she can do is read read read and ask a lot of questions as there is much to learn on what all is being proposed
Thanks
Rev
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