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Wanting to get into Digital Photography

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  • Unregisteredd97592c7
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Posted 07 June 2010 - 12:05 AM

Many of my friends are getting into digital photography with all their fancy expensive DSLR bits and pieces. And now I want to try my hand at some photography too ^^

Looking for an entry level DLSR style camera, budget approximately $400 to $500, new or used. I have noticed some Panasonic Lumix FZ series cameras, namely FZ35 and FZ50. I know these are not true DSLRs but for the purposes of testing to see if I like photography or not can anybody recommend how I would go about getting into it?

What should I look for in a DSLR style camera? Build qualities, weight, supported image formats, lense and zoom level etc?

Thanks in advance :)

Edited by Unregisteredd97592c7, 07 June 2010 - 12:07 AM.


  • TomSahz
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Posted 15 July 2010 - 02:28 PM

Hey there

Im wanting to get into digital photography too and have found the information on photo.net to be very helpful. This guide on how to choose a DSLR camerais a good place to start. Theres also individual guides on technique such as nature, landscape, macro and portrait photograpghy on their too. You can also find maintenance articles and just about everything you can think of to do with DSLR photography off the main "Learn" page here.

Hope that helps :)


  • Unregisteredc85a46b2
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Posted 15 July 2010 - 04:23 PM

DSLR is very interesting and also very complicated.... and I personally classify it as an expensive hobby, if you have a very limited resource ($$$), you may want to reconsider of what you actually want.

When choosing a DSLR camera, first you want to know what kind of photos you want to take, if you want to take moving object (birds, sport related shots, moving cars), you want to choose a camera which have a higher FPS (frame per second). Secondly, lens is also a very complicate field in photography, you will be mainly looking at the zoom range, the aperture (e.g. F/2.8 , F/3.5.... etc), these are something that will limited what kind of photos you can take.

I consider myself as a rookie, but if you need any info you can try fire it out and see if i can help :)

my suggestion of website will be www.dslrtips.com , those video does teach you a lot about what is what and what you maybe interested in.



  • mattn
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Posted 19 August 2010 - 10:21 AM

I am getting into this but have very limited budget. Ended up buying a Cannon SX1 - no DSLR, but gives a nice comprimise with a larger lens than most compacts with the smaller price.

Sometimes I wish I had gone full DSLR, but most times the smaller camera means I have it with me, and as the lens cannot be changed, I always have the right one on the camera, and I get a useable photo :)

What I am finding is the limits of the camera make me think about how to get the good shot in difficult conditions. With a really good camera, the limits mean you can stop thinking sooner, and get 'difficult' conditions less often.

I remember a few years back a newspaper sent it's photographers out with a disposable 24 frame camera, to prove that it's not the camera that makes the photo. They did! You should have seen the shots these guys came up with.

Don't for an instant think you can't get good photos without a DSLR, and you will always get great photos with one. A DSLR just makes it easier to get a good photo. You will learn more starting with a camera with limitations.


  • hippocampus
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Posted 05 October 2010 - 08:08 PM

Wow, i have to call you all "sempai" (it's Japanese ) for giving your advices.
i've always thoght that photos taken by a professional camera are better than by a digital one. Is that right? I just want to improve the quality of my digital posed photos, is there any special skill needed?


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  • TomSahz
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Posted 06 October 2010 - 01:29 PM

Hi hippocampus!

For information relating to improving your technique you might like to refer to the photo.net "Improving Your Technique" page. Theres also a wealth of information there relating to specific categories of photo such as macro or landscape. I highly recommend it!

I think most talented photographers would agree that the most important part of taking any great photo is the composition and photographers style, not the hardware or post processing software used.



  • hippocampus
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Posted 12 October 2010 - 06:37 PM

Dear Tom,
I am following your instruction, on my way training now.
Thanks for your comment :)


  • Dreadlock
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Posted 02 November 2010 - 11:57 PM

I call myself an advanced amateur and started out with a Rebel XTi a couple of years ago. When starting out with DSLR photography is easy to shoot for the stars when selecting a camera and I usually tell people to start with a camera that feels good to hold - sounds stupid but the image quality of the most cameras around today is perfectly fine even for more advanced users.

When developing you can always add new faster, longer, stabilized lenses which will do more for the image quality than the camera body will.

I eventually went for a Full Frame housing because I wanted the extreme wide angles available for that format but I still use a crop canon body because I sometimes want the crop factor to achieve longer focal lengths without using a converter.

Even though my full frame camera is faster and has higher resolution - the main thing I see as difference is ISO performance where the newer camera is a lot better.

So my recommendation is to check your local stores and find a nice amateur camera which feels good to work with and pair that with a lens superior to the kit lens - that way you'll achieve stunning pictures without having to increase your houses mortgages.


  • spiderm0nkey
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Posted 04 November 2010 - 10:57 AM

Through my personal experience with the Panasonic Lumix I had a little while back, I would recommend to avoid them. I found that the edges of objects were almost always purple and printing them out even at the standard photo size, the colours were muddy and not crisp and clear as they should be.

One thing I found helpful before I got my SLR's (I own a Nikon D100 and a Canon EOS 1000D, as well as an older Nikon film SLR), was using one of the 'inbetween' cameras. A nice point and shoot that still has the manual controls of a DSLR, just minus the interchangeable lenses. I used both the Fujifilm S1500 and the S2000 and they were great cameras. They really helped me learn the basics of manual photography and came at a much cheaper price point than the DSLR. The other advantage of those cameras is that they do tend to have a decent zoom on them, which would translate into an expensive lens if you had purchased an SLR instead.

Going for those cameras is most certainly a viable option if you don't quite have the budget to get straight into it. Keep an eye out for cheap camera bodies too if you do wish to go SLR. Brand new I think you can pick up a 1000D body for about $600? I got mine secondhand off a friend in mint condition for $300 and then went and purchased a fixed 50mm lens to keep me going.

Whatever you decide to do, never forget that it's all about the photographer, not the camera :)


  • krishant007
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Posted 05 November 2010 - 05:05 PM

im trying to get into dslr as well.. i have been looking at 2 cameras for the past couple of months, Canon 550D and Sony SLT A55.

Both of these have similar photo quality. But the tough choice is that, Canon is more reputed in this sector. So most would go for the Canon.

However, the new Sony one is rather interesting cz of the new transparent mirror instead of the shifting mirror like traditional. It allows 70% of the light to go through on the sensor so it can have continuous focus during movies and takes about 10 fps shots. and it has features like HDR photos, or twilight shots where it takes multiple photos and puts it into one etc.

But then again, I think if all that would be handy or not. I do not know atm since I havnt been in all those situations yet.

The reason im getting a DSLR is for my Euro trip next year so I want to get a feel and practice of it before then. And I thort it be nice to take it up as a hobby as well.

Any advice?



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Posted 05 November 2010 - 07:04 PM

However, the new Sony one is rather interesting cz of the new transparent mirror instead of the shifting mirror like traditional. It allows 70% of the light to go through on the sensor so it can have continuous focus during movies and takes about 10 fps shots. and it has features like HDR photos, or twilight shots where it takes multiple photos and puts it into one etc.

I don't see how the trantparent mirror is any major advantage, really.

"HDR photos, or twilight shots where it takes multiple photos and puts it into one" is probably not that important. You can probably do a better job by using exposure bracketing (on Cannon) where it takes 3 photos with different exposures and combining them in Photoshop etc, but it would be a lot more work. Cannon gets around the problem by having a better sensor for low light conditions, I fhink.

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  • krishant007
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Posted 06 November 2010 - 01:10 AM

the transparent mirror allows light to go thru onto the sensor as well as the view finder, so the mirror doesnt have to move out of the way for the picture to be taken. it helps during auto focusing of videos and things.

i am leaning towards the canon though.. any advice for a new comer to dslr


  • Azzura
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Posted 07 November 2010 - 12:01 AM

Nikon or Canon for DSLR. The body is somewhat important.....but when it comes down to it.....it is allllll about the glass.

For ps camera optical zoom is more important then digital zoom. And join a local camera club, if you have near you.

I started with a PS in 2002...it died, then I picked up a Nikon D80 (sold it), then I picked up a D300 with a couple of lenses - Nikkor prime 50mm 1.8, Tamron 18-55 2.8, and a Nikkor 70-200mm 2.8.

Whoever mentioned it is an expensive hobby...is very right. I thought computer stuff was expensive.....but camera stuff is even more expensive, depending on how much you want to get into it.

I hope to pick up a D700 someday, just for the low light conditions, but the D300 and or a tripod seem to manage well in low light.

Edited by Azzura, 07 November 2010 - 12:04 AM.


  • krishant007
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Posted 07 November 2010 - 03:19 AM

yup..it is a very expensive hobby!

i think i shall get the canon 550d. anyone got any clue of any camera clubs near the auckland city area?

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