advice on buying a mirrorless camera

Discussion in 'Photography' started by Giff, Dec 16, 2013.

  1. Giff

    Giff Guest

    Hi all,

    I am a beginner in photography. I used to own a dsrl (Canon 600), which
    got stolen with all (2) lenses, so I am about to buy a new camera.

    I decided to get a mirrorless one because of the smaller size (I will
    mostly use it when traveling), but in the future I will probably still
    want to buy a dsrl (maybe a full frame).

    So, question: can I get a mirrorless camera, a couple of lenses, and
    reuse them with my future dslr? I read that with Nikon this is possible.
    What about other brands? Also, are Nikon's mirrorless good?

    Thanks for any advice!

    G
     
    Giff, Dec 16, 2013
    #1
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  2. I'm not particular knowledgeable about mirrorless cameras. I
    don't know, for example, how the Nikon models compare to other
    brands. But your projected "system" is something I can comment
    on.

    If you are careful in the choice of lenses you can indeed use
    DSLR lenses on at least Nikon's mirrorless models. If I recall
    right (and I'm sure somebody will have a list) the Sony camera
    has adapters for any number of lens mounts. Just be careful to
    make sure that the lenses you get to start with for whatever
    mirrorless actually will be useful on whatever DSLR you will
    eventually get. Pre-planning will be important.

    All that said, a year or two back someone showed me his new
    Nikon camera, which was whatever the latest mirrorless model
    was at that time. It was almost enough to get me to go buy one!
    (As a working tool I have no use for it, but man that would be a
    really fun toy!) This fellow had a 50mm f/1.2 manual focus
    lens, with an adapter of course. It was cool, though I'll admit
    that he was a lot more impressed by the narrow depth of field,
    which he misconstrued as bokeh itself, than I was. I'd have been
    a lot more interested in putting an 85mm f/1.4 lens on it!
     
    Floyd L. Davidson, Dec 16, 2013
    #2
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  3. Keep in mind if you start with a mirrorless, such as a u4/3, then later
    switch to a full frame DSLR, all of your focal lengths will appear to
    have halved. With a Nikon 1 it will be even worse since the sensor is
    even smaller.

    Also, you will need to use an adapter with the mirrorless camera to make
    up for the difference in distance from the mount to the focal plane. If
    you are after a smaller size for traveling, you're losing some of the
    advantage of a mirrorless that you were looking for.
     
    Mark Storkamp, Dec 16, 2013
    #3
  4. Giff

    Giff Guest

    I can still get more lenses only for the (future/optional) dslr, but at
    the same time be able to reuse the ones I will get soon for the mirrorless.
    Oh, I see. So I guess I can mount dslr lenses on the mirrorless but not
    the other way around?

    Thanks to all for the comments, I am really a beginner in the field and
    have everything to learn.
     
    Giff, Dec 16, 2013
    #4
  5. Giff

    Robert Coe Guest

    : Hi all,
    :
    : I am a beginner in photography. I used to own a dsrl (Canon 600), which
    : got stolen with all (2) lenses, so I am about to buy a new camera.
    :
    : I decided to get a mirrorless one because of the smaller size (I will
    : mostly use it when traveling), but in the future I will probably still
    : want to buy a dsrl (maybe a full frame).
    :
    : So, question: can I get a mirrorless camera, a couple of lenses, and
    : reuse them with my future dslr? I read that with Nikon this is possible.
    : What about other brands? Also, are Nikon's mirrorless good?
    :
    : Thanks for any advice!

    Well, for what it's worth ...

    Mirrorless is probably the wave of the future, but this is not the future.

    You're more likely to be able to use a DSLR lens on a mirrorless camera than a
    mirrorless lens on a DSLR.

    If size is a consideration, consider an APS-C DSLR rather than a FF (i.e., a
    Canon 7D or the equivalent Nikon). Buy FF lenses as a hedge, if you can afford
    them and are willing to carry them. If you get so good that you actually need
    a FF camera, you'll probably be doing well enough to afford one.

    If you do buy a FF camera, get at least a 5D3 or a D800. If you're tempted by
    a lesser FF, stick with APS-C.

    Nikon's mirrorless cameras have a tiny sensor. Canon makes a mirrorless with
    an APS-C sensor, but some say it eats batteries (which should not be a
    surprise). And if you pay that much for a camera, it should have an eye-level
    viewfinder. (Hint: Neither the Canon nor the Nikon does.)

    Some of the advice you get may be better than mine, but some of it is sure to
    be worse.

    Bob
     
    Robert Coe, Dec 17, 2013
    #5
  6. Giff

    Noons Guest

    Yes it is possible.
    Sony, Olympus, Fujifilm and Panasonic all make mirrorless cameras that
    work quite well with just about any brand of slr or dslr lens.

    I regularly use my Olympus EM5 with Nikon and Leica-M lenses and also
    Canon FD. Apart from the reduction in angle of coverage and aperture
    due to the smaller sensor, there are no issues.

    In general you want a mirrorless camera with at least a m4/3 sensor,
    apsc even better, and Sony's FF is perfect.
    This, because it is hard to make a normal apsc or FF dslr lens work well
    with a smaller sensor: you lose too much angle of coverage and/or max
    aperture.

    Having said that, of course YMMV.

    Also, are Nikon's mirrorless good?

    Sure. They fit into any rubbish bin without any issues! ;)
     
    Noons, Dec 19, 2013
    #6
  7. Giff

    Giff Guest

    LOL

    In the end I am buying a dsrl. A Nikon d7100. Thanks for the advices,
    but I was testing a few mirror-less models and did not like the
    pseudo-viewfinder.

    Cheers,
    G
     
    Giff, Dec 19, 2013
    #7
  8. And so does Nikon. It might be open to question about how well
    any of them work with DSLR lenses though...
    The different angle of view is not an "issue". It is a simple
    characteristic of the sensor (and does not change the lens
    functionality at all).

    There is no difference in the aperture due to a smaller sensor,
    so it's hard to determine what you meant to say there.

    The problems that do exist have to do with matching lens
    functionality to the camera's control system. Image
    stabilization and auto-focus being the two big items that will
    make a huge difference. To put it mildly, do not consider any
    lens unless there is an adapter that allows at least Auto Focus
    to work.
    That might be true for you or for some specific set of needs,
    but there might be a different set of needs where the order
    would be exactly reversed.

    For example, for wildlife photography using long telephoto
    lenses, the cameras with sensors smaller than m4/3 might be the
    best.
    That's an absurd statement! Using a lens designed to provide
    coverage for a full frame DSLR on a smaller image 1) doesn't
    change the aperture, 2) provides a longer "reach", and 3)
    generally produces better quality due to using only the center
    of the field of view.

    An example might be that with a full frame camera body such as
    the Nikon D800, Nikon's very expensive 70-200mm f/2.8G VRII is
    a terrific lens with significant advantages, at a price, over
    the original 70-200mm f/2.8G VR model. But with an APS-C sensor
    such as on the D7100 there is almost no advantage to the more
    expensive model in terms of image quality. The same would be
    true if using an automatic capable adapter to any of the smaller
    sensor size mirrorless cameras.
    Lets hope so!
    They also produce better images than you can get with your gear.
    Not that it has much to do with the gear though...
     
    Floyd L. Davidson, Dec 19, 2013
    #8
  9. Giff

    Noons Guest

    Of course. And any of them will work better than Nikon's awful J series.

    Did I say it changed the lens functionality? I specifically mentioned "the smaller sensor". Does that mean "the lens functionality" in whatever demented language you speak?

    Ever tried to grok why m4/3 has quite a few 0.95 lenses while they are rare as hen's teeth for dslrs?
    No? Rest, then...

    AF is useless to anyone using a proper EVF mirrorless camera with focus zooming or focus peaking. Unless one is specializing in things like sports photography - very few of those around. AF is the last criteria I'd use for adapters.
    Much more important is they actually allow proper infinity focus. Something not every adapter can do, as I have found to my expense...
    As for stabilization the Oly EM has it in-body. Which means it can stabilize ANY mounted lens. And it damn well does, as I have found out - by a long shot the best and most cost-effective solution.
    No, that is true in general. Specific set of needs is what you have in mind when you say it might not be true.

    Would that be a "specific" set of needs? Perish the thought...

    Ah yes: the "generic field" of wildlife photography?...

    "on a smaller image"????

    I was talking about smaller sensors.
    Familiar with the language employed?
    Pssst: it's called "English".

    Exactly. Was that your point or you just echoing?

    No they don't. They are the biggest piece of garbage ever produced in mirrorless. Hard to think of a worse camera. Unless one mentions Canon's EOSM, whose "corrected" version they are ashamed of selling anywhere out of Japan...
    For you maybe. We all know you are a "perfect" photographer. The only remaining issue is understanding why that would be so, but that could be a different sensor issue?
     
    Noons, Dec 20, 2013
    #9
  10. Giff

    Noons Guest

    NO worries at all. That is a very good camera. One of the best in the
    apsc sensor size. Nothing wrong with it and you'll enjoy it a lot, I'm
    sure. As time goes by, you'll outgrow it and by then the scene will be
    so different you won't even know where to go next then! :)
     
    Noons, Dec 20, 2013
    #10
  11. Giff

    DanP Guest

    Think of the lenses you will use now and later. Canon 100D/Rebel SL1 DSLR is small enough, buy EF lenses and you will be able to use them later on a FF.

    http://img850.imageshack.us/img850/7890/100dsl1.jpg

    Or buy the EOS M and the EOS M - EF adaptor.

    Cheaper in the long run and you can afford good quality glass this way.


    DanP
     
    DanP, Dec 24, 2013
    #11
  12. Giff

    John Turco Guest


    If you want a system with the widest range of compatibility (by
    far), choose Pentax. Many millions of the company's lenses will
    fit its DSLR bodies, and some "glass" goes back several decades.

    John
     
    John Turco, Feb 24, 2014
    #12
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