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Author: Subject: Which camera?
David Jenkins

posted on 21/12/17 at 02:30 PM Reply With Quote
Which camera?

I'm thinking about getting a good-quality DSLR camera - Nikon or Canon - but I'm getting overwhelmed by the huge number of choices, and the potentially huge cost! So now I'm looking for some advice...

The aim is to get something better than my current Panasonic point-and-shoot (useful as it is) that I can for use for various purposes. These include 'serious hobby photography' rather than holiday snapshots, and also some specialist stuff like fixing it to the back of a telescope or microscope. The last requirement is why I chose Nikon & Canon, as adaptors are widely available for them. Also, I would need to have a remote shutter (electrical rather than IR) and a 'B' shutter speed.

I'll probably buy second-hand rather than new as the drop in price after purchase is massive; also many camera owners are compulsive upgraders so there's plenty on the market! I might even get the best body I can afford and fit a more general-purpose lens until I can afford to upgrade.

This leads me to my problem: both Nikon and Canon have a huge range of DSLR cameras varying from limited beginner's models up to super-expensive professional kit. Are there any go-to middle-of-the-road models that I should be looking out for, ideally something that came on the market in the past few years? I have no preference for either manufacturer.





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HowardB

posted on 21/12/17 at 02:42 PM Reply With Quote
well impressed with the D700 the low light and low noise performance, a low shutter count model is a good purchase





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snapper

posted on 21/12/17 at 04:35 PM Reply With Quote
Very difficult to advise.
The budget is critical as this will set the level of entry.
I would advise against any large professional bodies and go for the mid range.
Full frame or smaller chip set, well your budget is probably DX
lenses are very very important and it is here I would spend my money

As for Nikon or Cannon, either will do, I currently run Nikon professionally and will stay with them because of all the lenses I have acquired over the years

If you get a DX format body remember the focal length of the lens is effectively multiplied by the smaller sensor, usually about 1.5 times therefore an 18 to 150 zoom will become 21mm to 225mm

There are lots of amature cameras for sale at reasonable prices as well as lenses and they wont be beaten up like mine are

Sigma are a good aftermarket lens, better but more expensive than Tamron





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Wadders

posted on 21/12/17 at 05:08 PM Reply With Quote
If i was starting out, and wasn't already heavily invested in Canon lenses i would look at a mirrorless system, no question.
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David Jenkins

posted on 21/12/17 at 05:11 PM Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wadders
If i was starting out, and wasn't already heavily invested in Canon lenses i would look at a mirrorless system, no question.


Stop confusing me with extra choices!

(Any examples of mirrorless cameras?)





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Wadders

posted on 21/12/17 at 05:46 PM Reply With Quote
Sony A7r
Fuji X series
etc etc

Smaller and lighter than a DSLR, but still has interchangeable lenses, Many are capable of 4k video too, Sony employs a full frame sensor.

DSLR sales are on the decline and i think once Canon and Nikon come to the party DSLr's will eventually die out completely.






i]Originally posted by David Jenkins

Stop confusing me with extra choices!

(Any examples of mirrorless cameras?)

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David Jenkins

posted on 21/12/17 at 06:16 PM Reply With Quote
Presumably their viewfinder shows whatever is received on the sensor, rather than the reflected image from the mirror?





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David Jenkins

posted on 21/12/17 at 06:23 PM Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by snapper
Very difficult to advise.
The budget is critical as this will set the level of entry.
I would advise against any large professional bodies and go for the mid range.
Full frame or smaller chip set, well your budget is probably DX
lenses are very very important and it is here I would spend my money

As for Nikon or Cannon, either will do, I currently run Nikon professionally and will stay with them because of all the lenses I have acquired over the years

If you get a DX format body remember the focal length of the lens is effectively multiplied by the smaller sensor, usually about 1.5 times therefore an 18 to 150 zoom will become 21mm to 225mm

There are lots of amature cameras for sale at reasonable prices as well as lenses and they wont be beaten up like mine are

Sigma are a good aftermarket lens, better but more expensive than Tamron


The new models I've been looking at are around 500 - 600, but that's with a zoom lens. Second-hand, good bodies seem to be around 200 - 300, but I've not looked at second-hand lenses yet. I've been thinking about challenging myself with a good-quality fixed lens with the 35mm-film-equivalent of 50mm. Something that will force me to get closer to the subject and make me think a bit more! I used to do that when I had an Olympus OM10 - a tiny SLR that used to give really nice results. I do regret getting rid of that - although I'd never go back to a film camera, as I love the ability to keep shooting without worrying about wasting film.





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Madinventions

posted on 21/12/17 at 06:44 PM Reply With Quote
I've got a Nikon D7200 DSLR which has the DX format sensor and it's pretty phenomenal at most things but as others have said - do not try to save money on the lens! A good quality lens makes all the difference!
Take a trip up to Wex photographic in Norwich if you have time. They're really helpful and often have "used" stock with reasonable cost savings.
### Wex photographic link ###

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David Jenkins

posted on 21/12/17 at 06:49 PM Reply With Quote
Thanks for that link - we often go to Norwich, so that's very convenient.

I don't intend to scrimp on the lens - that's why I'd rather spend my money on a second-hand fixed lens with a nice wide aperture, and work a bit harder to get a good picture.





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AntonUK

posted on 21/12/17 at 07:48 PM Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wadders
If i was starting out, and wasn't already heavily invested in Canon lenses i would look at a mirrorless system, no question.


2nded, Having spent a small fortune on a Nikon D750 and new lenses I rarely use it because of the weight.

Very tempted to chop it in for an A7r system





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David Jenkins

posted on 21/12/17 at 08:10 PM Reply With Quote
Just looked up the Sony A7r - it may be a magnificent machine, but I don't intend to spend 2000 on a new camera body, without a lens! I only need a camera for hobby & self-education use, so my budget is waaaay below that level.





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ReMan

posted on 21/12/17 at 08:17 PM Reply With Quote
im Canon biased. They are at the party
Look at thE M3/M5. Mirrorless EOS, use the standard lens that fit the SLR bodied too.





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David Jenkins

posted on 21/12/17 at 08:36 PM Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by ReMan
im Canon biased. They are at the party
Look at thE M3/M5. Mirrorless EOS, use the standard lens that fit the SLR bodied too.


Right sort of budget, but they don't have the sort of remote shutter I want. If I ever do astronomical photography the software will need to trigger the camera, and these seem to only have an IR remote.





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ReMan

posted on 21/12/17 at 08:43 PM Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by David Jenkins
quote:
Originally posted by ReMan
im Canon biased. They are at the party
Look at thE M3/M5. Mirrorless EOS, use the standard lens that fit the SLR bodied too.


Right sort of budget, but they don't have the sort of remote shutter I want. If I ever do astronomical photography the software will need to trigger the camera, and these seem to only have an IR remote.


im no expert but i think they have wireless/bluetooth operation built in.





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David Jenkins

posted on 21/12/17 at 08:50 PM Reply With Quote
Ideally I'd want the camera to have a serial connection, like the Canon EOS 6D or 7D. They're still over my budget, unless I can get a good 2nd-hand deal.

In the past, many cameras had a simple 'make an electrical connection with a button, shutter fires' setup, but nowadays they seem to be concentrating on IR remotes, or a wifi app on your smartphone - not useful to me.

BTW: it's probably obvious, but I know three-fifths of f-all about the capabilities of cameras like these, especially in the obscure functions like remote control for very long exposures.

[Edited on 21/12/17 by David Jenkins]





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ReMan

posted on 21/12/17 at 10:12 PM Reply With Quote
I knows 10% more that Id admit to
Might be worth starting the camera search from the other end then and use Locostastronomers or equivalent forum to get camera recommendations that align to the special requirements ?





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B33fy

posted on 22/12/17 at 12:03 AM Reply With Quote
If you are looking at Canon there are two sizes of sensors, aps-c and full frame, the full frame sensors are the same size as 35mm film and are used in the more expensive professional range. The aps-c sensors are smaller and used in the beginner and enthusiast range. They each have their own range of lens. The full frame ef lens fit the smaller sensor cameras but not the other way around.

Picture quality is good regardless of choice though like all things you get what you pay for. Lens quality is also critical to picture quality and makes a huge difference, again proportionate to money spent.

I use a canon 760d which is a great beginner/enthusiasts camera. Just superseded now by the 800d.

An excellent site for secondhand gear is MPB, worth a look.

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Paul_Arion

posted on 22/12/17 at 06:23 AM Reply With Quote
Very happy with th Nikon D5600 I have - it does all I want it to (and more) without costing a fortune and is Dx format.

Link to used ones at Wex

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HowardB

posted on 22/12/17 at 08:10 AM Reply With Quote
oo I fancy a D750 - and yes glass is everything, as Nikon has shown over the last 50 or more years a really good lens is a great investment as frequently as the sensor tech changes they still have the same F-mount and lenses from 19.. will fit a camera from 2017. This is especially important if you are going to practice slow photography - then the auto focus and stabilisation are less relevant

good luck and post some pictures here (or the links)





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andyace

posted on 22/12/17 at 10:47 PM Reply With Quote
Would recommend you look at HDEW .... excellent prices ... got my daughters from there a while ago no issues

For example https://www.hdewcameras.co.uk/nikon-d5600-body-5602-p.asp is 475 (NEW) compared to the above price at WEX of 538 (USED!!!!!)

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David Jenkins

posted on 27/12/17 at 05:07 PM Reply With Quote
Well, my choice is narrowing: it's likely to be a Nikon D5300/D5500, or a Canon EOS 750D/800D. I won't make my mind up until I get to handle the cameras and pick the one that feels best in my hands. There's not a lot of difference in image quality or functionality between these brands, so it will come down to the feel of the things.

Just one question for the experts - does anyone make a digital camera that doesn't have automatic everything? My old film cameras used to help me out with exposure, but's as far as it went. I'm not too fussed about touch screens, GPS, WiFi, auto-focus (I can turn a focus ring pretty quick), fancy effects and so on. All I really want is a camera body that can hold a good lens, has a good range of shutter speeds, will help me a little with exposures, and I can do the rest by turning lens rings. This is all my old Olympus OM-10 ever used to do, and I loved that camera - I'd always wanted to move up to an OM-1. If I get one of those Nikons or Canons I reckon I'll be turning off or never using a lot of those fancy functions.

I know this makes me sound like an old fogey, but I really don't need or want all this expensive technology!





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B33fy

posted on 27/12/17 at 11:11 PM Reply With Quote
Pleased with my Canon 760, same as 750 with an extra information display. Like anything, you can use all some or a few of the cameras functionality. Nothing wrong with not using it though having it just in case. Like you I had an OM10 back in the day and tend to use the 760 in a similar way, aperture priority. As my skills have improved I have found myself using more of the functionality ultimately improving my photography.
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Wadders

posted on 28/12/17 at 09:45 AM Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by David Jenkins

I know this makes me sound like an old fogey, but I really don't need or want all this expensive technology!


Yes you do......you just dont know it yet!

As for expensive technology.....its not, do a google search for Zeiss manual focus lenses, but sit down first

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David Jenkins

posted on 28/12/17 at 02:45 PM Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wadders
As for expensive technology.....its not, do a google search for Zeiss manual focus lenses, but sit down first


The perfect camera for my needs would be a Leica M, but I won't be buying one of those either (5K + 2K to 5K for the lens)!

[Edited on 28/12/17 by David Jenkins]





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