Please help with picking my first DSLR

Started 4 weeks ago | Discussions thread
Mr McClicky
Regular MemberPosts: 170
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Re: Please help with picking my first DSLR
In reply to bladerunner6, 4 weeks ago

bladerunner6 wrote:

We are going on a cruise next year and I am thinking of finally upgrading from a P&S (Kodak Z1015IS 10 megapixel) to a DSLR. I was thinking of trying to stay under $700.

I understand that most of the lenses included in consumer kits are typically lame, so I have thought about buying a less expensive camera like the refurbished Canon T3i or even the 12 megapixel T3 and spending money instead on a better lens or maybe two.

I also have a couple of lenses from my Nikon film camera: a Nikon 28-80 AF and a Tamron 75-300, model #872D. I understand these are compatible with some, but not all Nikon DSLRs but I don't know if there is one in my budget that is compatible.

Finally, I have thought about the two lens Pentax K-50 kit from Costco with the 18-55 and 50-200 lenses. I know it is a kit but at least with Costco I can return it easily and quickly with essentially little fuss. I also like the second year of warranty. (I would also buy the refurbed Canons or the hypothetical Nikon with a credit card that extends their warranty).

Any opinions, thoughts, observations or suggestions? My only other comment is please don't suggest I bust my budget to $1200, $1400 or whatever. I might be able to work in some flexibility but we are trying to be practical about how much we will spend. I just got an iPad, we are going on a cruise in a mini-suite and a few other minor things, so we are trying to work within a budget.

Thanks in advance.

Hey bladerunner I'm too new to dslr photography(2 months) to give a very educated opinion on dslr cameras but I'm going to chime in anyway.  Although I'm new to dslr photography, like you I also have a bit of a background shooting, processing, and telecine transferring motion picture film.

2 months ago I was also in the market for an affordable dslr.  I needed mainly for the video capabilities but also to add some photography to my list of production services.   After researching profusely I finally settled in on the Nikon d3300 and I'm very happy.  This camera is neither too big nor to small for my taste.  I even added an aftermarket battery grip and the fit became even better for me, the camera looks pretty cool like with it as well.  After playing around with this camera's features I became more smitten by the photographic capabilities then the video and now I'm hooked and in love with photography.  This camera has an awesome "GUIDE" feature that actually gives you in camera settings that aids in teaching you how to select certain settings for different situations i.e. portrait, sports, macro etc.  The guide mode really helps in getting you up to speed in dslr photography.  Although I know that I still have a long way to go to get to the level that I would like to achieve, I think that this cameras guide mode is helping me get there.  As for the kit lens, I sometimes wish for a faster lens for low light situations and smooth bokeh but these lenses are pretty darn sharp to me and under the right conditions I don't think that bokeh is bad neither.  All of these image are only lightly retouched in iPhoto;

My inexperienced opinion is literally worth about 2 cents, but I'm gonna give it anyway!  You already have some pretty good compatible lenses and its within your budget with possible change to spare for a  new nikon 50mm f1.8.

Rafe

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