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Thread: Noob Help!

  1. #1
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    Noob Help!

    Hi,
    I've recently taken on a large interest in photography from seeing all the amazing pictures on this forum and riding around all the time.. In my budget ($200 or below), i can't afford a new dslr, so what are my options? Point and shoot? Craigslist?
    Thanks!!
    -Steven

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    P&S or an older used DSLR. But you probably won't get a body and lens for $200. If you had $300-350 you could certainly break into the DSLR world without a problem.

    Don't know much about Canon, but you can get a Nikon D50 for $159 and a Nikkor 18-55mm lens for $89 or a Nikkor 55-200mm for $84. You can get a Tamron 55-200mm in Nikon mount for $39, brand new. So yeah, I guess you can grab a DSLR and lens for $200. The D50 isn't a bad body. You can always buy better glass over time and upgrade the body later. For $200, I'd go that route over a P&S unless portability is really important. If it were my money, I'd pony up the extra $50 and get the Nikkor 18-55mm. It's a kit lens but that's ok, it won't be terrible, in fact the images I have seen with the D50/18-55mm combo are very respectable.
    Last edited by Nubster; 07-10-2012 at 11:45 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Psycle151 View Post
    Friggin' coward. Give me a red chiclet instead of debating like a man. You don't deserve your green blocks.

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    What store/ website did you get those prices from?
    Thanks for the reply!

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    Yeah, guess that would have been helpful...lol

    Like I posted above, $200 will get you a decent body and lens, another $105 will really round out your kit with a Nikkor 55-200mm which I'd definitely choose over the Tamron, but really, for $39, I don't think you could go wrong with the Tamron.

    Nikon D50

    Nikkor 18-55mm

    Tamron 55-200

    Nikkor 55-200
    Quote Originally Posted by Psycle151 View Post
    Friggin' coward. Give me a red chiclet instead of debating like a man. You don't deserve your green blocks.

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    Thanks. Unfortunately it's out of stock. Is there any other websites that you would recommend?

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    On the Canon side you could look for an XS or XSi. Once in a while I see kits come up (18-55 i.s. lens, which isn't bad) for $350 new (Staples), so used has got to be within your price range. I have an XS body with my primary lens being worth way more than when the body was brand new (Sigma F2.8 24-70). A good lens really makes a difference, plus you can keep your lenses. I shot a wedding on a T3i body using that lens and got some great shots.

    Both Nikon and Canon have really affordable 50mm prime lenses that are f1.8. The nickname for the Canon one is the "nifty fifty". They are around $99 new and well worth the money. I have one and love it. Great for portraits, super fast, can get a crazy short depth of field. Fun lens and cheap for a new lens. Only complaint is the focus ring is tiny (for when you are focussing manually). It works fine, but when you are trying to focus on something quickly manually it's not he best (the sigma focus ring is bigger than the zoom ring). Of course I've only run into that a few times (most people just use autofocus anyhow).

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    Kathleen in AZ
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    Another option is to try to pick up something like a used Canon S95 or S100. These cameras have fully manual modes so you can really learn about photography without having to haul around the DSLR.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arch Itech View Post
    Thanks. Unfortunately it's out of stock. Is there any other websites that you would recommend?
    Slightly more but a better camera, here is a D70 for $200.
    Quote Originally Posted by Psycle151 View Post
    Friggin' coward. Give me a red chiclet instead of debating like a man. You don't deserve your green blocks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DurtGurl View Post
    Another option is to try to pick up something like a used Canon S95 or S100. These cameras have fully manual modes so you can really learn about photography without having to haul around the DSLR.
    True, it's definitely easier to carry around a P&S, but a slr with a light lens (e.g. 50mm prime in plastic) isn't far off weight wise. My experience with P&S (most recent a canon powershot, s3 or s5 or something) is that even though they may have a low f-stop (e.g. f/2) having the aperture fully open still won't give you a nice short depth of field. I assume this is because of focal length (as DoF isn't just contingent on aperature). To me being able to get a dramatic short DoF is one of the main things that separates a P&S from an SLR. If I'm taking a shot of an apple on a tree I could get just a bug that's on the skin in focus, or bring it up to get the entire apple, or the apple and branch or entire tree depending on what I want (and depending on sufficient light at that zoom level). With a P&S you have very little control over DoF and short isn't an option (except for maybe macro shots?).

    At $200 I think a used entry level slr is doable. If the budget was lower P&S would be the only option. Not that P&S are bad. I have a few and have gotten good pics with them. They have their benefits (portability being a big one, I can fit my little casio in a breast pocket). If photography is going to be a long term hobby then I'd definitely shoot for an slr. Pick a side on the Cannon/Nikon fence (either is great, just have to make a choice) and get something to get yourself going. Then you can start collecting lenses as you find/need/want them.

    There are other SLRs out there that are good (Pentax, Sony etc) but from a lens standpoint it doesn't make sense in my opinion. Nearly everyone uses Canon or Nikon, so that's what you'll find for used lenses at a good price. Plus they've been using the same mounts for a long time now (Canon EF mount was introduced in 1987).

    I bought an older film Canon Rebel just for the lenses. Got a decent 80-300mm Canon which I kept, sold the Tamron 20-60 or whatever it was for a few bucks. After selling the other lens I probably paid $40 or less for the 80-300.

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    Check out B&H Photo or Adorama. They both sell reasonably priced used dslr's. A p&s like the Canon S95 or S100 with full manual and RAW is also an option as long as you don't intend to shoot action photos. Too much shutter lag.

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    Thanks for all the advice! Definitely getting a dslr over a p&s

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    Good choice. Go for a low end DSLR for starters, then practice, practice, practice. Practice shooting in either Shutter priority or Aperture priority. Or better yet, practice in Manual.
    - Ed

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    buy an entry level used dslr on ebay such as a canon rebel xti

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