Good time to enter DSLR game (refurb D5100)?

Started Feb 23, 2013 | Discussions thread
carauction Veteran Member • Posts: 6,646
Re: Good time to enter DSLR game (refurb D5100)?

Nexu1 wrote:

I've been interested, and playing around, with photography for a number of years now. While I've always had point and shoot type cameras, I've never been afraid to play around with the manual modes (changing depth of field, slow shutter speeds for blur, using a tripod, etc....). I've been using a Sony RX100 lately and like the camera quite a bit. Two improvements I'd like to get would be improved bokeh for portraits of family/kids and improved landscape shots. These are my two most important uses for the camera. One of the reasons I'm drawn to a DSLR is because while the RX100 has broke through to new ground from the perspective of shooting indoor low light photos without a flash, I know a prime lens on a DSLR will still blow it away. And for those days when the family is out playing in the park and I get a nice shot of the daughter I'd like to improve the separation between the subject and the background and the RX100 is just physically limited in how much bokeh it can deliver (I'm not looking for world class bokeh, but better than RX100 for sure). I do take quite a bit of landscape photography: sunrises/sunsets (huge dynamic range), farm fields/barns, bridges, fresh snow, etc... I'm also interested in the ability to use filters, particularily neutral density to slow shutter speeds for motion blur (water) as I live right near Lake Michigan and take a lot of photos around the water.

I'm not always frugal. And I'd love to buy a D7100 because I think I'd be set for 5-7 years. But I have this part of me that feels like a D5100 would be "good enough". And I've read about the mainly positive reviews from members here buying refurb from Adorama or Cameta and I can get a D5100 w/ 18-55 for <$450 right now. That seems like an insane deal to me! So I'm thinking about pulling the trigger.

Would this be a good entry for me? Is there something about the 5100 that doesn't fit well with my shooting needs? Should I wait a bit and spend more?

Thanks in advance for your thoughts/opinions/recommendations.

I just bought a D5100 refurb from Roberts on Ebay, w/o lens for $369.00. I think it is a great way to go. Only thing is shooting wider aperture to get more creative with a prime lens will require AF accuracy between camera body and lens. So if you were to get a prime lens such as the very affordable and excellent 35 f/1.8, you have to make certain of its accuracy performance esp. at F/1.8-F/2.8. With a refurb. you have 90 day warranty. Shooting Landscape at F.8-F/11 hopefully should be fine.


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