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  1. #1
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    Apr 2014
    British Columbia
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    Question I'd like some help to find a camera!


    I am looking to find a camera that would best suit my needs.

    I'm not entirely picky on the type or the pixels or the zoom, because all I want is a camera that will give me the best shots for under $550.00. I'm looking to take a lot of sports photos (my brother plays football and rugby- both fast-paced sports) that will be of good quality. These games are outside and will either be in the sun or the rain, depending which sport and the season. I also take many pictures of the fundraising events that the football team is involved in, so I need something that is good for that too.

    I've been looking at cameras like the Sony Alpha SLT-A58 and the Canon Rebel T3i, but unfortunately I don't know enough about DSLR cameras to know what is best for me. Honestly, it doesn't even need to be DSLR, just a camera that will produce great photos for me! I am a fast learner so I'm not concerned about a learning curve or anything like that, but this would be my first DSLR camera.

    Let me know what you think, any input is good! Thank you!

  2. #2
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    Jul 2007
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    Default Re: I'd like some help to find a camera!

    To take good photos of outdoor sports you need a long zoom lens. You mention taking pictures in the rain - this requires a weather sealed camera. The cheapest DSLR with weather sealing and a long zoom lens is probably the Pentax K-30, which was released in the summer of 2012. I've seen the camera body for sale online for $439. The camera plus a 3x zoom 18-55mm lens is $569. The long zoom Pentax 55-300mm lens alone is $327. Keep in mind that while the body is environmentally sealed, the lenses aren't, so you just can't safely take pictures in the pouring rain.

    I realize that the camera, 3x zoom lens and long zoom lens I mentioned above are almost $900 and the combination camera-lenses aren't waterproof, so you may want to adjust your expectations.

    If you eliminated the weather sealing requirement the Sony SLT A58 and Canon Rebel T3i would do nicely, but you'd still need a long zoom lens for sports shooting and the combination camera/3x zoom lens and long zoom lens would still cost close to $1000.

    A cheaper alternative would be a non-DSLR with a built-in long zoom lens. You'd lose a little in image quality, and the camera won't be waterproof, but the ultra long lens would do well for sports shooting and the price would be well within your budget. Some possibilities are cameras from Sony (the HX400v is the top of the line), Canon (SX50hs), Panasonic (FZ70) and Fuji (HS50EXR).
    Panasonic FZ28
    Canon Elph 330 HS

  3. #3
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    Aug 2008
    western US
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    Default Re: I'd like some help to find a camera!

    The main difficulty with the non-DSLR cameras is that their autofocus will not track fast sports action as well as a DSLR. But you can use the pre-focus technique with any camera that has manual focus or the focus-lock feature.

    For fund raising events an external flash may be helpful. So try to stick with cameras that have a hotshoe for accessories. The widest selection of advanced flash units, usually called speedlights, is for the Canon and Nikon camera brands. But any camera brand with a hotshoe can use a simple manual speedlight.

    Kelly Cook
    Olympus PL2, Canon EOS 50D, Fujifilm F45fd, various film dinosaurs



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