Newbie gear question 2300 budget.

Started Feb 3, 2014 | Discussions thread
John Deerfield Veteran Member • Posts: 3,216
Re: An alternative?

But very few cameras have as much of merit as the K-3 — and the ones that do aren't APS-C.

Well, that is your opinion. You place a higher emphasis on something like weather sealing over peer-to-peer or third party support, of flash implementation, the ability to move to full frame, etc… And that's fine. But's opinion, not fact.

With Canon/Nikon, you have the most peer-to-peer support. This includes (but not limited too) potentially saving money buying used gear. I have been teaching a basic camera class for over 10-years. In all of those years, in terms of DSLR's, I have had countless Nikon or Canon cameras. I have had two Sony DSLRs and a total of zero Pentax cameras. And it never fails, class participants will organize themselves: Canon shooters clump together, Nikon shooters clump together. I often wonder how my two Sony shooters felt.

Odd. I also teach photography, though generally as a four-lesson crash course in a one-on-one setting. I always used to make a point of bringing a different camera brand each time, starting with a film SLR and going through three brands of DSLRs for the next three lessons. Students have said it helps get them away from dwelling on brand and pushes them to focus on the three major settings relevant to every exposure and common to every camera: Shutter speed, aperture and ISO.

What is odd? That a vast majority of the DSLR public uses Canon or Nikon? Or that I don't bring various cameras to the class to discuss the merits of different cameras? My students already have cameras and the aim of the course is to help them with the cameras they already have. If my advice is asked for, it's given, along the same lines of what I have given here.

That I know of right now, three of my former students have upgraded from their previous or starter systems to Pentax DSLRs. Legacy glass for them is everywhere up here, often sitting on pawn shop shelves for as little as $25/lens, and while you might not be able to find them in every camera store, they're carried by at least a couple major chains (London Drugs, Henry's, etc.). If you're looking for used AF lenses, there's always a good selection on KEH and eBay that can ship worldwide.

Upgraded? And while there may be "easy to find" used Pentax glass, it will never compare to both new and used gear (not just lenses) you will find in support to Canon or Nikon.

That's what Metz is for

You learn more and have more creative control using all manual flashes anyways.

So it's ok to turn to a third party product in order to promote Pentax, but that shouldn't be a "feature" for Canon or Nikon? In terms of manual flash, I will have to disagree. I understand the spirit of what you are saying, but they are times where I find TTL invaluable. And there is no doubt that most "beginners" aren't interested in manual flash only.

And I am not trying to pick on Pentax. In the Sony system, FEC (flash exposure compensation) is hidden within the camera menu. What sense does that make? Both Canon and Nikon put it on the flash itself… which seems like a no-brainer to me. In other words, you aren't going to outgrow a Canon or Nikon system. Or at least you are less likely to outgrow them.

Now, if someone has a specific reason to choose say Sony, or Pentax, or whatever, then great. You know what you need. But for the vast majority, it is simply smarter to stay with Canon or Nikon.

Doesn't make sense to me to limit yourself to only two options simply because they're the ones everyone else likes.


Now, if somebody has a specific reason to choose, say, Canon or Nikon, great. Though it never hurts to keep in mind that Sony's better for easy video (less so now that the 70D exists) and that Pentax has bar-none the best features:price ratio.

There is a specific reason to stick with Canon or Nikon, you just don't like it. And I will be the first to admit that if someone has a specific reason (video, specific lens, friend/family has gear that can be borrowed, and so on) for choosing another brand then great!

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