Take the plunge to SLR

Discussion in 'Canon' started by roadkill401, Dec 13, 2008.

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  1. roadkill401

    roadkill401 Member

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    I took a trip to Disney and brought my SD550 to capture the moment. Up until this point, I thought is was a pretty good camera, but the majority of shots were less than stellar. Also, the number of shots that I missed because the camera could not focus or take the picture in time.

    Well, I have learnt quite a bit from that experiance, and am looking to get a more "real" camera to play with.

    This leaves me with the delama that I am facing. The internet is a wonderful place and full of all sorts of informaton. I have played with what camera to go with, and ended up with the choice of the following.

    Go cheep and get the Rebel XS 1000D camera for about $580 with the 18-55mm IS f3.5-5.8 lense. -or- Go expensive with the EOS 50D with the 18-200mm IS f3.5-5.8 lense for $1650

    Not spending a whole whack of money has it's good points. The camera will meet my immediate needs while I learn all about SLR and how to shoot good photographs. The lense is a good starting point but not the biggest range. I know I would want more telephoto options if I go back to Disney or wherever my next vacation takes me. I know I can get a better lense with the $1000 I am saving, but worry about the body not holding up in the long run. Will I out grow it in a year of two.

    If I go with the better 50D, and get the lense that I want, it's a whole whack of money up front. The body is better built with more weather resistance. I will have the lense that will last me for 90% + of the shots that I see my selft wanting to make. But am I fooling myself that I won't want a better camera in 2 years, and I am sure that by that time, the features in my 50D will be common for the entery level cameras being sold. For the money that I am spending I would hope to get at least a good 4-5 years out of the body.

    I have looked at the XSi, but the cost of the unit with the 18-200 lense is only $280 less than the 50D. For the price difference it hardly seems worth getting the lesser camera.

    I have also looked at Nikon, and they are all more expensive than the Canon equivilent.

    I am looking to order something early next week, so any input is much apreciated.

    Matt.
     
  2. CalebSchmerge

    CalebSchmerge Super Moderator/Reviewer News/Review Writer

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    Well, the nice part, as you mention, with SLRs is that you can always upgrade lenses and bodies mostly independently of each other. That leaves you with a few choices. You could buy the cheaper body and lens now, and be able to use them while you learn and grow, and find out what you really want in an SLR. I am a Nikon person, so I can't speak directly to the Canon equipment, but I can say that I find that the vast majority of the time I am taking pictures I love my 55-200mm lens. It is very rare for me to want a different lens and not be able to switch. Family vacations are different, but don't count that lens out just yet.

    One combo you don't mention is to buy the XS with the 18-55 and 75-300mm lenses. That would be a good setup and won't cost you too much.

    You hint at this, but I will say it directly here, invest your money in your lenses, not your camera bodies. The lenses from 30 years ago that were good still are, and are still worth using. Fewer people are using cameras that are older than their lenses. In a few years (hopefully more than that) you are likely going to buy a new camera body, but if you have good lenses, you will use those same lenses.

    By the way, shop around more, the Canon XS with 18-55mm lens at B&H is only $480, and the kit with the extra lens I mentioned was only $500.
     
  3. Andy Stanton

    Andy Stanton Super Moderator Super Moderator

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    The Canon EOS 50D is quite a bit larger and heavier than the Rebel XS, which some might consider very significant in their purchasing decision.
     
  4. roadkill401

    roadkill401 Member

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    I should have noted in my original post. I have tried both camera's, and run a few shots through both of them.

    I am a pretty big guy, so size and weight are not too much of a factor to me. The XS is smaller, and I found that when holding it, my left hand seemed to be in the way of the autofocus. Now this is probably a factor of the size of the lense rather than that of the body.

    The 50D is much larger, and does have some heft to it. I have only tried it shooting around the house doing family candid shots. I don't know if the added weight and size of the lense will be an anoyance if I am carrying it around with me for a full day.

    The other consideration that I have is in how important are all the 'extras' such as flash, tripod, filters etc.. that will add some cost that has not been factored into the budget.

    I am sure that from a picture quality, the two are not far off each other. I am more concerned with the regret factor of if I purchased the lesser camera that I will with I had spent the extra. I have read the section on lenses, and can see that there is a whole range of options that seem to be availible. The 17-55 lens is about the same as what I have now on my SD-550. There has been times when I wish I had a better zoom, but if the picture is clean, a crop down of the 10mp image to a 5 will still give you a decent 5x7 print, kind of like blowing up part of a negative onto paper.

    A fair question to ask: Is the 50d a huge improvement over the XS?

    Of the features that I like. Having the 6.3 fps in RAW and magnesium body construction (more weather proof).

    At my local camera store, the 18-200 lense I am told sells for $700.

    Matt
     
  5. roadkill401

    roadkill401 Member

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    Flip flop on DSLR

    Budget

    Up to $2000cdn

    Size

    I am a big guy, so size doesn't matter. Not too small as my hands tend to get in the way.
    Features

    How many megapixels will suffice for you?

    I am going to gather that optical zoom is important to me. I have tried out an 18-200mm on a Canon 50D, and found I used the whole range. I am sure if it was not there I would survive though.

    Image quality is of the upmost importance for me.

    Manual exposure, Aperture priority, shutter priority, ability to shoot in low light without a flash. I am definately needing a DSLR


    General Usage

    I am looking to use it as my go to camera. Family photo's. Shoots of my daughter in ballet, and sports. Vacation photos. Also love architectural shots.

    Will not likely make very large shots. May go up to 8x10.

    Will be shooting a lot of indoor photos or low light photos?

    Will be shooting sports and/or action photos?.


    Miscellaneous

    Are there particular brands you like or hate? I like Canon as I have found them cheeper that Nikon. Looking at a Rebel XS (1000D) or the EOS 50D


    Here in Canada, there is about a $1100 price difference between the XS with an 18-55 IS lense, and the 50D with the 18-200 IS lense. I have tried out both of the camera's and they work great with bonuses with each of them. I have used the 6fps in Raw on the 50d and it's great to shoot my daughter dancing. I would not expect to do this more than once or twice a year.

    I am just getting into SLR so this is admitedly a learning camera. It seems that they offer better deals on a camera kit over buying a body and lense as seperates. I don't know if it's better to get a lower camera an a flash or tripod, or spend it all on a higher end camera.

    I can see an 18-200 IS lense would be used a lot. They don't offer that lense in a package with the Rebel XS.

    Matt.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 27, 2015
  6. AaronM

    AaronM News/Review Writer News/Review Writer

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    So some thoughts, from a happy 40D owner:

    I think of camera purchases in terms of years, that is, divide the cost by how many years of good use do I get out of it. So if the 50D is about 1100(us) or 1600(including 18-200 IS) and the XS is about 500(us) with a pair of lenses, I'd want to be happy with the 50d for a year or so longer than the XS. On the other hand, if you find the XS cramped or uncomfortable, than you'll NEVER really be happy with it, and the choice is easy.

    There is a third option, you could probably get a 40D for about 700(us) and that 18-200 all-purpose lens for another 500, giving you a camera with the feel and speed of the 50d, but save $400.

    Each of these has tradeoffs, the 50D has much nicer screen, higher useful IS and better live-view, which might make the trade up from a P/S easier. The 40d has the robust build and ergonomics of the 50d at lower cost, although the screen and live view are less impressive. Finally the XS gives you a powerful system at impressivly low price, and the ability to trade up in a year or two without worrying about how much you spent on that 50d, when the 60d has been released ;)


    A
     
  7. roadkill401

    roadkill401 Member

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    I went throgh the same thought process. Being up in Canada, we are very limited to the sorts of sale that we can get. I guess the camera stores are not hurting as much up here as they are in the US and the prices reflect that. The sad part is that if I drove down the the US to buy a camera, I would not be able to get it serviced under any warantee as they don't honor US models in here.

    That said, the price gap between the XS and 50D was just too much for my pocket book, so I did take a look at the 40D as an alternative. It could be had for about $1350 with the 18-200 IS lense. So that was the camera that I ended up with.

    I found that the XS was just too small in my hand, and didn't feel right. I looked at the XSi, but that was just about the same price with the 18-200 lense as what I paid for the 40D.

    Now I have this high end camera and not too much of clue on how to use it properly. There as so many options that are availible in the custom settings that I don't have the slightest clue on how to use. I will admit that I have to read the manual still, so maybe it will make sense after that.

    Can anyone recomend a good book that would cover all the settings on the camera in understandable english, and maybe give some examples on when you would need to set them.

    Matt.
     
  8. AaronM

    AaronM News/Review Writer News/Review Writer

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    I've got a few examples of when to use exposure compensation, lemme track them down
    A
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2008
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