Choice of Equipment

Discussion in '35mm Cameras' started by Sue R, Jul 29, 2003.

  1. Sue R

    Sue R Guest

    OK, I know the FILM VS. DIGITAL thing frequently comes up here. I have
    some specific questions:

    If you could only spend $500 (US) on equipment and could choose from
    the following choices, which would you choose?

    1. Canon Elan 7E 35mm SLR with 28-105/3.5 zoom lens.

    2. Canon Rebel Ti 35mm SLR with 28-105/3.5 zoom lens and 50mm/1.8
    prime

    3. Canon G3 digital camera (4 megapixel)

    4. Canon G2 digital camera (4 megapixel) with 512 meg card

    5. Olympus 5050 digital camera (5 megapixel)

    I want the best combination of quality and convenience for the money I
    can spend. I have had good experiences with http://www.BuyDig.com so I
    will be buying from them. Their prices are awesome, too. All new,
    unopened, USA-warrantied stuff.

    I will be using the camera for a combination of family pictures (home
    portraits, outdoor portraits, snaps), travel pictures (outdoor and
    indoor), street scenes, and experimental photography in almost every
    possible condition. I will not be blowing pictures up past 8 X 10
    inches. I will probably pick up an external flash and bracket
    eventually to help prevent red eyes.

    Will I notice any differences in quality between film and digital
    prints up to 8 X 10? Differences between the above listed cameras?

    If I go digital, I will not be printing with an inkjet printer. I will
    be having my prints made on Kodak Royal VIII paper by Adorama for 29
    cents each.
     
    Sue R, Jul 29, 2003
    #1
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  2. Which, like a discussion "sugar vs honey", has no resolution.
    Why continue it?
    IMO, it's a toss-up between 2 and 4. If you want film, it's 2.
    If you want digital, it's 4.
    (a) Never say "never". Eventually you will take a photo you will
    want to enlarge to 11x14 or 16x20 (not that it's impossible
    from a digital file).

    (b) What kind of "experimental photography"?
    How can anybody but you tell whether _you_ will notice it or not?
    There _are_ differences, yes.
    If there were no differences between the cameras, they would be the
    same thing. They aren't. So, there are differences. You need to
    decide what is the major feature set you're interested in. Elan 7E
    has eye-controlled focussing. It's faster. It has more features
    than the Rebel. The same with others. Some are more sophisticated,
    some are simpler to use...
    Good for you. That technology still does not add any information
    to the picture.

    I say, save some money and get both.

    Victor
     
    Victor Bazarov, Jul 29, 2003
    #2
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  3. Sue R

    Lisa Horton Guest

    I would say that makes your answer #1. The Rebel is a good camera, but
    limited and much less convenient to use compared to the Elan 7e.

    The Digital's you mention would not give you the fast response and vast
    flexibility of an SLR, be it a film or digital SLR.

    Lisa
     
    Lisa Horton, Jul 29, 2003
    #3
  4. Great body. Dunno about the E; I've got the Elan 7. Dunno about the lens
    either.
    Well.... some shooters have the TI as a backup body. The 50mm is an
    astonishingly sharp and astonishingly fragile lens. It will give you great
    images right until the point where the lens falls apart when you
    inadvertantly tap it against something, or so I'm told.
    Yep, good choice. If you use the viewfinder and not the LCD for framing,
    you might appreciate the G2 over the G3, where the lens intrudes into the
    frame. G3 has a longer zoom and a few more bells and whistles. Both have
    more of those than many will use in any case.
    Aha, and here is a determinator. If you are looking to use a camera for
    opportunity shots, do not get a digital camera of any kind. The reason is
    *shutter delay*. None of them, as far as I know, are free of that problem.

    Having said that, half press gets rid of a lot of it on the G2, but not all
    of it. Dunno about other cameras.
    Probably not, at least with the Canons.
    At this point, it looks like you are not really prepared for digital in any
    case. Digital makes sense when you have computer and printer and software
    for handling your own images. Exceptions to that are for the shooting pro
    who has a digital SLR (much reduced shutter delay), and who has other
    arrangements for handling the files.

    I think your best bet at this time is the Elan 7 (the eye control is
    problematic) with the best standard zoom you can afford. The optional
    battery grip allows you to use 4 AAs instead of 2 CR123s, and unless you
    have really small hands, it makes the camera a better handling and
    balancing machine. The EOS lenses are amongst the best available, and the
    price you pay for each is worth the extra dollars in many cases. For
    instance, I bought the 50mm f1.4 for $300US, and grunted at the thought
    that I'd never paid anywhere near that price for a like lens for any other
    system I've owned. As soon as I got the lens and started shooting with it,
    the price was forgotten. Remember, there will always be more money to
    spend somehow, and the quality you purchase is what will remain with you.

    Buy your film in bulk from the guys in NY .

    I presume you know that you can check out the reputation of all on-line
    retailers on one of several sites: Google for that.

    The likelihood of your making this single purchase without further
    acquisitions is inversely proportional to the variety of ways you will use
    the camera. You won't go wrong starting off in the Canon EOS system; at
    the point where you discover you need even better equipment, you'll know
    more than enough to make and justify any choices you take.

    Good luck!

    Bill Tallman
     
    William D. Tallman, Jul 29, 2003
    #4
  5. Anytime you want to experiment with photography, you need to use film. Film
    will allow you to do things digital can't (due to it's dynamic light range
    and color saturation).

    If you were just doing snaps, I'd say go digital, for the convenience BUT:

    You can get more camera going film compared to digital. You can (almost)
    get a medium format Hasselblad body for the price of a 10D.
     
    drhowarddrfinedrhoward, Jul 29, 2003
    #5
  6. Sue R

    Alan Browne Guest

    Personally none of the above. If restrained to the above, then choice
    #1, and if you save your pennies you can pick up the 50mm f/1.8 soon enough.

    Cheers,
    Alan
     
    Alan Browne, Jul 29, 2003
    #6
  7. Sue R

    JezzCE Guest

    I assume that is all the money you are going to spend on cameras for a long
    time. Film and processing can add up quickly. For what you are doing, I will
    pick,

    ¡§4. Canon G2 digital camera (4 megapixel) with 512 meg card.¡¨

    Digital will save you a lot of money and headache in the long run. I will
    watch the number of frame taken with longer trips and set it to lower number
    of pixels. I will also give a passing grade with 8 x 10 prints as well.




    ====================================
     
    JezzCE, Jul 30, 2003
    #7

  8. To put the money into something that would yield the $4000 I needed to get started.
     
    Michael Scarpitti, Jul 30, 2003
    #8
  9. I agree the G2 and card is the go.

    Without paying much more, you will learn faster and more about photography
    without extra overheads of film. I've shot 10-15 rolls of film in a day, and
    that costs me big as an amateur - especially if you do it a few days in a
    row. Instead of learning from mistakes immediately, you do so a week after
    the shoot - which isn't easy as an amateur.

    You could go film once you know more (about skill, photography, preferences
    for landscapes or sports etc), because then you'll have a better idea what
    lenses you'd like. You will also be better at photography testing with the
    G2, and if you show some talent, having an SLR with nice glass and slide
    film down the track, you can start blowing up some big prints - but you can
    anyway with 4Megapixels.

    I have a DSLR and prints are sweet up to 100x100cm's. I have a Canon A20
    digital with waterhousing, at 2 megapixels it does excellent A4 images.

    For my two bits the G2 + card wins hands down.

    Derrick
     
    Surfworx Photography, Jul 30, 2003
    #9
  10. (Sue R) wrote in messageI must apologise if the threading gets messed up. The original message
    got fried on my newsfeed.
    My general rule of thumb is to get the cheapest body that does the job,
    with the most expensive lens I can afford, assuming a fairly standard
    lens mount. The quality of your glass shows, moreso than a working body
    with manual functions. My second bit of advice for film cameras, is buy
    used, where possible, from a reputable retailer. Your same $500 or
    whatever goes much farther.
    Whether you get film or digital, depends strictly what you're doing. I
    have a big bias against digital cameras, so I'll get that out in the
    open, and you can get your grain of salt ready. I'd get the film
    camera. While some people say that digital is better for beginners,
    because you can throw away your rejects, I think that the best way to
    learn, is staring at a reject print, and seeing where you went wrong.
    I'd also lean towards film in your situation, because, IIRC, the film
    and digital EOS series uses the same lens mount. So if in the future,
    you want a serious digital camera, you can use the nice lens(es) you
    already have.
    In the end, it depends on what you want. For casual use, digital is
    pretty convenient, especially if you want to email family and friends.
    Decent prints are fairly cheap, and you're not spending money on film.
    Most serious amateurs I know prefer (especially B&W) film, because the
    prints are better, and of the atmosphere in the local community darkroom
    is better than the one at the computer.

    Good luck whatever you choose...
    Regards,
    James

    Post Script to the regulars: skimming the ng over the past few days, I
    haven't seen a faq posting, eithe rhere, or on faqs.org. How often is
    it reposted?
     
    James Donovan, Jul 30, 2003
    #10
  11. Sue R

    Dallas D Guest

    None of 'em.

    If I had $500 I would buy a used Nikon F2 or F3 and a 50mm lens. This camera
    will probably outlive you and film. If you look hard enough, you will find.

    Or a good condition, recently serviced Canon A1 with a 50mm lens.

    --
    "I smile mostly everywhere. Well, there's some people might disagree. But
    hey, I'm playin' with the Stones, man. You know, I mean why shouldn't I
    smile?"
    - Keith Richards

    www.imageunlimited.co.za
    ..
     
    Dallas D, Jul 30, 2003
    #11
  12. At the risk of answering your question in a way you didn't intend, how
    about the Nikon N80? Unless you're a died in the wool Canon-ite or own
    Canon EOS lenses already, you really ought to consider the Nikon N80.

    It is a very highly rated and respected camera, with just about every
    feature you could want. You can get it body only for about $400, or
    heck $350 with the $50 rebate they have going on. That leaves enough
    to get the 28-80 zoom lens or a 50mm 1.8 lens with some change left
    over. Its autofocus performance is good, too--forget the so-called
    Canon advantage. But there is an advantage many see with its 3D Matrix
    TTL flash system--something only Nikon has (as best as I know I could
    be wrong; I think Minolta's Maxxum 7 may have it too).

    Obviously it's a film-based camera. It's one of the best too. You
    really should consider it if you don't have a warehouse full of Canon
    EOS lenses.
     
    Larry R Harrison Jr, Jul 30, 2003
    #12
  13. Sue R

    Chris London Guest

    This is the exact choice I made, mainly for the combination of features on
    the Elan 7 for the price (mirror lockup, DOF preview, E-TTL flash
    capabilities, built in flash is nice for fill-flash, 4 fps, 1/4000 shutter
    speed, add the battery pack grip for ergonomics and AA batteries). No spot
    meter (10% partial), but other than that, good body, and this lens has been
    good to me. I added the 50mm f1.8 just for doing the occasional indoor work,
    not enough to justify the crazy price on the 50mm f1.4.

    --

    Cheers,
    Chris

    ***
    Atheism is a non-prophet organization.
     
    Chris London, Jul 30, 2003
    #13
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