Why you love your DSLR

Started 11 months ago | Discussions
paulj623
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Why you love your DSLR
11 months ago

There have been a lot of threads lately about never using a dslr again and going mirrorless etc. besides a fast auto focus of the dslr please share more reasons why you love your dslr and have chosen to use it as your main camera as well. I think it is funny that people say they want to leave their best cameras home for vacation which is the opportunity to get your best once in a lifetime shots.

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Telhma
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Re: Why you love your DSLR
In reply to paulj623, 11 months ago

I can understand people move to mirrorless, or even smartphones when they are on holliday, some phones can manage to get realy beatifull pictures, off course, on portrets and fast moving subjects they lose from a FF DSLR, but do you take those pictures on holliday??

Today we are connected a lot to social media, and not that much to the photobook annymore, we do not go show off our pictures when we get back home, but when we are on our holliday here the smartphones wins big, you take the picture, and 3min later you get your first like.

Nevertheless, I hate looking at a screen to take pictures. I need a viewfinder. and realy if the sun is shining on your screen

Also i love creative shooting a lot, shooting with filters, bulb mode, fish eye, ....

And, i realy love shooting sports, I even do it on my hollidays, and i do not know anny mirrorless, point and shoot, or smartphone that can outbeat my DSLR there

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Doug J
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Re: Why you love your DSLR
In reply to paulj623, 11 months ago

paulj623 wrote:

There have been a lot of threads lately about never using a dslr again and going mirrorless etc. besides a fast auto focus of the dslr please share more reasons why you love your dslr and have chosen to use it as your main camera as well. I think it is funny that people say they want to leave their best cameras home for vacation which is the opportunity to get your best once in a lifetime shots.

I have 3 cameras, 2 are DSLRs. I may not fit into your model as I view them as only inanimate objects - no love at all. I bring & shoot what I think is right for the situation. I focus more on what lens(es) & accessories to bring.

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hotdog321
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Re: Why you love your DSLR
In reply to paulj623, 11 months ago

They are simply tools for capturing images; no "love" here. Just an appreciation for a good piece of engineering.

I'm a photojournalist and like the idea of mirrorless cameras in theory, but they don't seem to be "there" for reliable pro use yet. No flamers, please. I know some pros are using other designs, thanks. DSLR's have instant visual and tactile feedback, a VAST array of lenses and accessories, large and rugged enough for professional banging around, long battery life, superb image quality, and a mind-bending array of shooting options.

Sometimes I wish they were smaller and/or lighter.

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tex
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it's an amzing machine, and still...
In reply to paulj623, 11 months ago

the one that gives me the best results of all the cameras I've owned except MF and LF cameras---and it gives MF a run for its money.  It's a Sony A850, so no whopper FR or ISO's.  As digital cameras go, it's quite simple---that makes operation a breeze and that goes right down to the menus---DPR said the same thing when the A900 was reviewed (A850 is the only very slightly less adept sister).  Files are lovely, and that's the biggest deal for me, also WB is great.  Solid and dependable. Excellent ergonomics for me.

I miss live view and an articulating screen, especially on the project I'm doing right now which requires really critical manual focusing, and I'm not a fan of the Minolta hot shoe at all---although ADI flash is good.

That said, I love my NEX 7.  Am paying close attention to what Sony will be doing with mirrorless.  OVF's are lovely in their way, but I can live w/o them if it means not having to deal with mirror lock-up and a big chunk of optical glass on the top of my camera.  EVF's are more flexible, and w/o the mirror it seems higher FR's are also possible more easily.

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Richard
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DSLRs are just cool
In reply to paulj623, 11 months ago

paulj623 wrote:

There have been a lot of threads lately about never using a dslr again and going mirrorless etc. besides a fast auto focus of the dslr please share more reasons why you love your dslr and have chosen to use it as your main camera as well. I think it is funny that people say they want to leave their best cameras home for vacation which is the opportunity to get your best once in a lifetime shots.

I don't shoot any pictures with my DSLR, I just carry it around to look cool. Mirrorless and phones don't look cool.

I don't leave my DSLR at home on vacations, I take it with me because it makes me look cool. Anyone with me must have a phone camera so they can take pictures of me on vacation looking like I am taking pictures with my cool DSLR (even though I am not taking any pictures) LOL

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Bob Tullis
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In reply to paulj623, 11 months ago

Whatever one decides on as their tool of choice is not as important as how they understand their tool and can make it do their bidding.  After all, the point is to take/make a photograph.    Whether a photo will impress or have significance has nothing to do with the tool of choice, assuming one has chosen  tools that are appropriate to their objectives.

There's an abundance of camera owners/operators, but there's not quite as many photographers.   Mainly because not as many ask of themselves more than they ask of their tools.

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MJJSevilla
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Re: Why you love your DSLR
In reply to paulj623, 11 months ago

People who haven´t used recent mirrorless cameras can exaggerate differences between DSLRs and mirrorless. For example, I see a comment implying that bulb mode or filters are the sole preserve of DSLRs (¿!?) and the line in the OP about "why would you leave your best camera behind on vacation" which is certainly news to me because I´ve had no problem using filters or bulb mode with my Fuji X Pro compared to a DSLR or once felt that I was missing out by not using a DSLR after a month´s photography trip to Iceland.

The Fuji´s advantages are weight and size. One crucial factor which I never see mentioned in these discussions, is the weight not just of the camera and lenses but also the tripod. The tripod I use for my X Pro is substantially lighter than the tripod I used to use for my Hasselblad X Pan rangefinder (which is a rather heavy and brick like body even though the lenses were light) or my Nikon D2X both of which I sold. When you get up at 2am and then do a 20km round trip up and down hills in the middle of nowhere, that becomes extremely significant - and I´m younger and probably fitter than a lot of DPR users going on the comments I read.

Relative inconspicousness is also a factor. People simply react differently - less defensive for want of a better word - when they see me with an X Pro, compared to a DSLR. I get comments if its a Lomo camera or something I´ve inherited from my father because it "looks old". I attract less attention. At the end of the film era, the Hasselblad X Pan was a popular option for travel and landscape photography and I see my X Pro as a direct successor. Simply put for my style of photography my X Pro (and before that my film rangefinders) put me in the right place at the right time more than my SLR equipment, which for me outweighs certain disadvantages. This is why I don´t get the implication that mirrorless cameras or photographers are inherently less serious. At the time it was produced nobody comsidered the X pan a point and shoot or unserious camera, my X Pro simply fills the same niche.

This is why I don´t understand mirrorless v DSLR threads.  The key word is "niche".  Horses for courses, innit?

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MJJSevilla
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In praise of the DSLR.....
In reply to MJJSevilla, 11 months ago

Since this a thread in defence of the DSLR, based on my month in Iceland this is what I missed about a DSLR:

First and by the far the most important, battery life. Mirrorless cameras go through batteries like anything, especially when you´re camping out in a cold location.  Small camera, small battery, probably more use of the rear screen (even with an OVF equipped mirrorless).   I was amazed how fast I went through my spare batteries and it became a major logistical hurdle planning my trip around places where I could recharge easily.

Secondly a good OVF is still better than an EVF. The good thing about using an X Pro is that you get hte rangefinder style OVF with framelines (at least if you like using rangefinders), but for TTL you must rely on the EVF. Actually for tripod mounted stuff I mostly use the rear screen anyway, but I can well understand the preference for an OVF. Actually I find most APS DSLRs OVFs quite crappy, my Nikon D2X was a definite step back compared to my Minolta film SLRs, and that was at the time, Nikon´s top camera.  But there is just something about a big optical viewfinder.   It must be said that the Fuji´s OVF is much smaller and dimmer than the X Pan it replaced, although it is more versatile in terms of the information it displays.

Finally, the ability to reliably track moving objects is a major strength of DSLRs. I mostly do landscapes macros, static scenes, architectural details etc.  so I don´t care but the few times I did wrestle with uncooperative birdlife, I did miss that.  If you were going to shoot sports like one poster above or lots of wildlife, why would you even consider an X Pro?

What I didn´t miss was image quality. The X pro is competetive with most DSLRs except the most recent FFs and while a D800 clearly would outclass it, I never print above 12x18 anyway since I don´t have enough wallspace so in practical terms, the difference simply isn´t important to me.   To be honest I care about getting the shot I want, the composition, the light, the right viewpoint, whatever, and if I can print up to that size, resolution isn´t the be all and end all.  One prob with the Fuji models is that their DR isn´t the best (or the worst).  That´s one aspect of IQ I´d like ot see imrproved, though with stitching and ND grads it isn´t unsurmountable.  FF mirrorless is certainly possible, ask Leica.

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Glen Barrington
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For me, it's simple. . .
In reply to paulj623, 11 months ago

I like eye level viewfinders, and dislike the EVFs I've seen so far. I also dislike in the extreme the idea that we should spend an extra $250 - $500 for an external EVF.  When THAT issue is resolved at a price I'm willing to pay, I will happily abandon my Oly E30. It has nothing to do with legacy lenses or any of the other objections we usually hear.

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liquid stereo
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Ergonomics and L lens catalog
In reply to paulj623, 11 months ago

paulj623 wrote:

There have been a lot of threads lately about never using a dslr again and going mirrorless etc. besides a fast auto focus of the dslr please share more reasons why you love your dslr and have chosen to use it as your main camera as well. I think it is funny that people say they want to leave their best cameras home for vacation which is the opportunity to get your best once in a lifetime shots.

The DSLR is truly fantastic for sports & wildlife. The aforementioned dead-fast AF — continuous, predictive, etc. — when coupled to the excellent ergonomics makes it a very reliable solution. When one takes into account Canon's excellent lens catalog of fast telephotos... its truly amazing.

What some fail to get/realize/understand is that its not so much about the camera as it is about the solution. The solution consists of the camera + lens  and it arrives in the context of a "problem". My problem is sports and wildlife. (I don't use my DSLR for portraiture. I don't use it for landscapes. For those things I use my Fuji X-Pro1.)

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v1fan
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Re: Why you love your DSLR
In reply to paulj623, 11 months ago

Let me preface by saying that I'm only talking about mid-to-upper level DSLRs.

For me what sets DSLR, a good one, apart is the viewfinder. Even APS-C DSLRs with a VF magnifier offer a huge window to what you're photographing, something that no EVF or let alone a LCD can do.

The DSLR VF also enables you to see the distortion and perspective as you move around. Out of focus area, dof preview.

The AF-on button is the another feature in mid to up DSLRs that I simply cannot do without. this feature is in some mirror-less as well but so far no mirror-less can show you a preview of out of focus area right in the viewfinder.

Other features of DSLRs, such as battery life, cheap lens options, second hand market, accessories, weather sealing.

A DSLR is a mature product, which has been refined. The stupid heavy design that started in late 80s because of marketing reason is one of its only draw backs but at the same time, if you stick with light zooms or primes its not that bad. in fact the ergonomics of DSLRs makes it easy to carry them for long hours.

hopefully with falling sales DSLRs will get a make over and become smaller.

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Pritzl
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Re: Why you love your DSLR
In reply to paulj623, 11 months ago

In a word? Creative flexibility. That's 2 words I guess.

DSLRs, on balance, have a much larger selection of glass, flash and other accessories. Every time I get a new piece of kit for my ageing T1i, it breathes new life into my photography opening up avenues that were previously closed or too challenging for me to pursue. It may not drive my creativity but it certainly enables it.

e.g., a few years back I felt I needed a fast prime for portraiture. I had 8 options just from the OEM! (50mm 1.2, 1.4, 1.8, 85mm 1.8, 1.2, 60mm 2.8 macro, 100mm 2.8 macro and L version of the same)

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69chevy
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Re: Why you love your DSLR
In reply to paulj623, 11 months ago

paulj623 wrote:

There have been a lot of threads lately about never using a dslr again and going mirrorless etc. besides a fast auto focus of the dslr please share more reasons why you love your dslr and have chosen to use it as your main camera as well. I think it is funny that people say they want to leave their best cameras home for vacation which is the opportunity to get your best once in a lifetime shots.

People who love their cameras escape me. Do such debates occur over other inatimate objects elsewhere?

Why do you care what camera anyone else uses? Do you get a copy of everyone elses pictures?

If a person uses a zoom lens with their DSLR, do you think they are funny for not using a prime?

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Ben_Egbert
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Sensor and lens mount
In reply to paulj623, 11 months ago

As long as it accepts my lenses and has or exceeds 5D3 image quality and can get the best possible focus (live view is sufficient), I don't care if its DSLR or not.

My EOSM almost qualifies, but for sensor size and the resulting image quality. 14mm FF is part of why I need FF. I don't think any of the 10mm crop lenses match my 14 Samyang or 16-35.

I suspect we will see a full frame EF mount non SLR in the future. Size and weight are not important enough. My EOSM with a 22 fits in my pocket, but If I mount one of my EF zooms or Primes, it hardly matters.

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Glen Barrington
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It doesn't sound like much of a consensus does it?
In reply to paulj623, 11 months ago

It seems we all have our own reasons. But I think the thing to take away from this is that those of us who are likely to buy a mirrorless camera in the configurations available today, have already done so.

To get the rest of us, the manufacturers will have to either address our concerns, or continue to divide the enthusiast market into 2 groups (and pay for the inherent inefficiencies of that business model)

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Pitbullo
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Re: Why you love your DSLR
In reply to paulj623, 11 months ago

For me, the autofocus and viewfinder are strong points of my dslr. The main reason, other than those mentioned, is ergonomics. Pocket cameras are too small!!! I cant get a good grip (I have big hands) on them.

So, the combination of features and ergonomics makes the dslr the only choice for me at the moment.

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zackiedawg
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Extremely simple reason...
In reply to Pitbullo, 11 months ago

I don't 'love' my DSLR, or any camera for that matter, but I find my DSLR to be an excellent tool because it does the task I need it to do with the controls I need it to have in the conditions I need to shoot in, reliably and with great results, making it a pleasure to use.

Coincidentally, this is also the very same reason I find my mirrorless to also be an excellent tool.

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MarshallG
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Re: Why you love your DSLR
In reply to MJJSevilla, 11 months ago

People who haven´t used recent mirrorless cameras can exaggerate differences between DSLRs and mirrorless. For example, I see a comment implying that bulb mode or filters are the sole preserve of DSLRs (¿!?) and the line in the OP about "why would you leave your best camera behind on vacation" which is certainly news to me because I´ve had no problem using filters or bulb mode with my Fuji X Pro compared to a DSLR or once felt that I was missing out by not using a DSLR after a month´s photography trip to Iceland.

The Fuji´s advantages are weight and size. One crucial factor which I never see mentioned in these discussions, is the weight not just of the camera and lenses but also the tripod. The tripod I use for my X Pro is substantially lighter than the tripod I used to use for my Hasselblad X Pan rangefinder (which is a rather heavy and brick like body even though the lenses were light) or my Nikon D2X both of which I sold. When you get up at 2am and then do a 20km round trip up and down hills in the middle of nowhere, that becomes extremely significant - and I´m younger and probably fitter than a lot of DPR users going on the comments I read.

Relative inconspicousness is also a factor. People simply react differently - less defensive for want of a better word - when they see me with an X Pro, compared to a DSLR. I get comments if its a Lomo camera or something I´ve inherited from my father because it "looks old". I attract less attention. At the end of the film era, the Hasselblad X Pan was a popular option for travel and landscape photography and I see my X Pro as a direct successor. Simply put for my style of photography my X Pro (and before that my film rangefinders) put me in the right place at the right time more than my SLR equipment, which for me outweighs certain disadvantages. This is why I don´t get the implication that mirrorless cameras or photographers are inherently less serious. At the time it was produced nobody comsidered the X pan a point and shoot or unserious camera, my X Pro simply fills the same niche.

This is why I don´t understand mirrorless v DSLR threads.  The key word is "niche".  Horses for courses, innit?

There are a lot o DSLR users who would love to own and use a Fuji X Pro. It's probably better for street photography than a DSLR. It's probably a great DSLR replacement for lots of other tasks... some of the time. That means owning an X Pro system and a DSLR, which is expensive. And it means knowing when to bring your X Pro and when to bring your DSLR.

Canon's EOS M replacement, with the fast autofocus and EF lens compatibility, could become that second body, if it's affordable. I'd pay $399 for the body, if it has a quality feel like the X Pro. For more money... I don't know.

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FrankyM
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Re: Why you love your DSLR
In reply to paulj623, 11 months ago

paulj623 wrote:

There have been a lot of threads lately about never using a dslr again and going mirrorless etc. besides a fast auto focus of the dslr please share more reasons why you love your dslr and have chosen to use it as your main camera as well. I think it is funny that people say they want to leave their best cameras home for vacation which is the opportunity to get your best once in a lifetime shots.

Personally I can think of nothing worse than lugging a whole lot of kit around on holiday on the off chance of getting a halfway decent image. For this type of photography I use a compact (XZ-1).

I use a DSLR and/or mirrorless (OMD) when I have the opportunity to think about what I'm doing photographically and that, as you know, requires time and patience without the better half wanting to do something different.

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