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  1. #1
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    Beginner DSLR Package?

    I am looking to get a DSLR for taking both riding shots and general day to day photos. What body and lens would you guys recommend for riding?

    Any input?

  2. #2
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    The Canon Rebels are good. I have the T5 and am pretty happy with it, it's pretty light weight. I am upgrading the lense however. Looks like the SL1 is the smallest and lightest and seems to get pretty good reviews.

    Something like this comes with a standard cheapy "kit lense" which can produce decent pictures.
    http://www.amazon.com/Canon-Rebel-Di...0BW6LY2Y?&th=1

    I've got this one on order, which is more than I paid for my camera w/ 2 kit lenses:
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...ilpage_o03_s00

    And I have this to carry it while riding, but still won't take it for super technical stuff.
    Amazon.com: Lowepro LP36430-PWW Photo Hatchback 16L AW (Pepper Red): Electronics

  3. #3
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    I'm a Nikon shooter. I'd suggest checking out some used bodies like the D300. The D300 is a great camera that is considered a semi-pro body, it's weather proof, tough with a metal and has a great focusing system. It's commonly used as a sports camera to capture fast motion. The one downside is that it's high ISO ability isn't great so low light shooting isn't one of the things this body is great for. One reason I recommend the D300 is because you can get the body for around $350.

    If you find the need for better ISO, the D7000 is another really good choice and is what I'm shooting currently. Not quite as good of a focusing system as the D300, but the high ISO is much better so you can shooting in less light and get better quality shots.

    A great walk around lens is the Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 and can be had for around $100. After that, you can cheaply add a couple kit lenses to get you started until you decide if you want to invest in highend glass.

    My suggestions are only based on the assumption that you might not want to invest a ton of money in your first DSLR system. I may be completely wrong and you have $10k to spend...I don't know. I just know I'm a budget photographer so I look at used equipment mostly. I've never had an issue with any of my stuff either. Camera gear is generally pretty robust and takes a lot of abuse.

    There's also the option of getting a mirrorless system. They take pictures as good as any DSLR and are much smaller so that's a great pro for taking your camera with you on the bike. Downside is fast focusing. Right now even the most current/advanced mirrorless camera isn't on par with the focusing ability of a good DSLR, buy they are getting closer all the time and it's just a matter of time before they catch up and even surpass the DSLR. I also shoot a Sony NEX-6 and I love the camera for what it is. Takes awesome pictures and is easy to carry around. For fast sports I reach for my D7000. Anything else it's usually the Sony. I've never really shot mountain biking but I'd imagine it could be a little bit of a challenge for a mirrorless camera but certainly not un-doable with some practice and a decent AF lens or manual spot focusing.
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  4. #4
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    I would check out the mirrorless APSC Sony's. I have an a5000 that I picked up used, with the 16-50 kit lens. I was impressed enough to get the 16mm/2.8 lens and have never looked back. It's light and fast and I get great images. The native 16x9 format is perfect for landscapes and the 20 MP image gives a lot of detail. I would like a viewfinder model like the a6000 or a7 but I'm pretty happy for now. I am however lusting after some of those Zeiss lenses made for the e-mount system.

    I don't do much action photography. I like that I can run my camera on the tripod over wifi from my phone for bird and animal photography. The controls are a little small and close together for my xxl hands but I cope. The camera rides unobtrusively with the strap over my neck, it doesn't swing around or bump against me. This is not true of the larger and considerably heavier 16-50 zoom lens.
    I was not designed to be forced. I will breathe after my own fashion. Let us see who is the strongest.

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  5. #5
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    I started with the first digital rebel and it did me well. Don't scoff at the plastic body, it's plenty tough, mine went through a lot, including being dropped off a rock wall into asphalt.
    I now carry mirrorless for riding, it's smaller & lighter. It's AF is fast, at least as fast as my 1st Rebel, and it's frame rate is impossibly high for a dslr to match. The one thing it lacks that makes it difficult for action shooting is viewfinder and the image blackout. Dslr still better in that regard.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by bsieb View Post
    I would check out the mirrorless APSC Sony's. I have an a5000 that I picked up used, with the 16-50 kit lens. I was impressed enough to get the 16mm/2.8 lens and have never looked back. It's light and fast and I get great images. The native 16x9 format is perfect for landscapes and the 20 MP image gives a lot of detail. I would like a viewfinder model like the a6000 or a7 but I'm pretty happy for now. I am however lusting after some of those Zeiss lenses made for the e-mount system.

    I don't do much action photography. I like that I can run my camera on the tripod over wifi from my phone for bird and animal photography. The controls are a little small and close together for my xxl hands but I cope. The camera rides unobtrusively with the strap over my neck, it doesn't swing around or bump against me. This is not true of the larger and considerably heavier 16-50 zoom lens.
    My NEX-6 has a viewfinder but honestly I rarely use it. And my DSLR has liveview but I never use that...go figure...lol

    But I agree. Unless you are shooting really fast sports, the mirrorless systems are really nice. And even if you are, with some practice, I think you could still manage great shots of fast moving subjects.

    I'm lusting after the new Sony Alpha a7R but at $1900...I could never justify it. I have thought about upgrading to the A6000 though. The Lumix stuff is awesome too but I hate to change formats and if I do, I'm waiting to see what Nikon has coming down the pipe. I don't really have much in lenses so it wouldn't be too much a pain to switch...really just two actually e-mount lenses...the rest are legacy glass.
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  7. #7
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    I have a great DSLR Pentax I love it. I never take it on rides a DLSR is just too big and heavy I rather take more water. On hikes I take my DSLR we take it wheeling too but mountain biking no.

    I would like to get a mirrorless dslr the technology is pretty much there and these cameras are small powerful they also have some good glass you can buy. When I get a new camera it will be mirrorless dslr

  8. #8
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    I agree that mirrorless is probably the way of the future...

    As for DSLR's I've had good luck with refurb Canon equipment... I've had several of the Rebel series, XS, T3i and now T5i.

  9. #9
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    I use a Canon 20D that is a hand me down from my dad. It takes awesome pics. My basic packing lens is a 24-105 that I got a deal on.

    The body can easily be had for under $100. You can buy starter lenses to start out with and then upgrade either body or lenses as you want. Nice part about SLRs is everything is interchangeable (as long as you pick a brand want to stick with). I was raised on Canon.

    Canon EOS 20D 8 2 MP Digital SLR Camera Black Body Only | eBay

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  10. #10
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    Also, just got this SLR pack to take for a week vacation riding in Whistler. The pack is rad. Room for SLR and a water bladder if you need it.

    Lowepro Photo Sport 200 AW Camera Pack - REI.com

  11. #11
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    I'll add my 2 cents. I shoot Nikon also and shoot my sports with a D3S (way overkill for what you need). I recently picked up a refurb D5300 and LOVE it. I have been using it for some of my portrait sessions. Love the LCD screen which swivels, which would be useful for you. Image quality is fantastic. But as also mentioned above mirrorless is the way to go. Being able to take video and photos (without the video stopping as with a dslr) is super. I have an older Panasonic GH2 that I use for video and stills.

    Jim

  12. #12
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    I'm a n00b at camera stuff but I shoot w/ a D5100. Like Pharmasea's 5300, it has a swivel LCD screen and good image quality. I have a 50mm lens I primarily use and it produces super crisp images. I think I bought the camera w/ kit lens, a memory card, and the 50mm lens for around 700 total.

    I record some guitar videos with it works great!
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  13. #13
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    I shoot Nikon with a D700 and some nice lenses, and I'll use it sometimes if I decide to shoot some teammates at races, cross mostly, but it's too much to bring along if you are actually ridding.
    The camera I have actually been using while on a ride is a Ricoh GR crop sensor compact with a fixed 28MM equivalent F2.8 lens. About the size of my iPhone 4 except a bit thicker, easily fits in a camel back pocket or a Jersey pocket, though I will put it in a gallon size zip lock if in a jersey or if I think it might rain, since I have had slight condensation on the lens if it rains or I sweat a bunch without it being in a bag. Isn't the best for action shots, though auto focus isn't too bad, and it doesn't have a zoom, but for senic photos, or grab shots of friends it works awesome, the ergonomics and controls are very well positioned and make shooting in manual mode and changing setting pretty good.The new version just came out and added wifi and a couple other small features, and goes for about $700 or you could get a leftover model for perhaps around $500 or so.
    I also have liked the Olympus OMD EM5 and Em1 I was actually able to fit the EM5 in a camel back back pocket with a small lens, it also has great picture quality and is a bit smaller then a conventional DSLR, in M4/3 I would recommend the newer Em5 mark 2 if you want a little smaller, or the EM1 if your alright with a little more size and added toughness of the body. I've used the Em1 on hikes and it is great for that or would use it on a ride if I was using a rack and bag, or a little larger backpack, I gave my brother the original Em5 for his new family and I miss the slightly smaller size compared to the EM1.

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