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bfosmark
05-05-2010, 11:50 AM
Hey all,
I am looking at getting our first DSLR. I have been looking around and the Nikon D3000 looks like it is a good camera for a rookie. Primary use will be dogs/outdoor pictures and my 16 month old wild man of a son. Any experienced opinions out there? We will be learning as we go and probably want to spend 500-700.

Thanks,
Brady

Chris Ries
05-05-2010, 02:38 PM
I picked up a D3000 around January. Body, 18-55 Nikon lens, 70-300 Tamron lens, and bag/cleaning kit/memory card for around $800. I love it. Takes great photos for what I need. I think it would be a real good fit for you. It's also very easy to use.

subroc
05-05-2010, 06:36 PM
here is a nice link to compare cameras side-by-side. I added a few cameras for comparison. There iis a pretty comprehensive list of dSLRs available to compare.

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/compare_post.asp

bfosmark
05-06-2010, 09:10 AM
That is a great site, thanks!

Eric Johnson
05-06-2010, 11:43 AM
You may want to include the Nikon D5000 in your consideration. It has a "movie mode" that may be useful to you both in dog training and with the children. For the $80 or so more, you may consider this worthwhile.

Eric

pixel shooter
05-06-2010, 05:44 PM
if you can all afford, try moving a scale up to amateur dslr. You can pick up some pristine bodies with low shutter count that will more than meet your needs for $700 or so, ie nikon d200 or d300 or canon 30d/40d. Canon glass you will find more lens selection and better pricing, both are great systems. when shooting action you will find that it is a better tool than entry level systems, just my two cents worth. Fredmiranda.com is a great site to find equipment, bodies come and go, but glass is forever ;)

dnf777
05-07-2010, 02:08 PM
IMO, the video mode on my D90 is rather limited, compared to a dedicated video camera. (even a cheap one) If you already have a videocam, or if you want to shoot video at any level of quality, I would not justify spending extra for that feature on a camera. Get a camera for photos, and a video cam for video.

Eric Johnson
05-07-2010, 03:46 PM
Look at http://www.nikonusa.com/Find-Your-Nikon/Digital-SLR/index.page

From there you can select the camera you are interested in. The sample images are good comparing one camera to another but they are taken with high end lenses so your results may vary.

The real thing to look at on any given camera page is at the far right and is called the "Digitutor". When you open that, you'll see a series of short tutorials on the specific features of that camera.

Eric

Byron Musick
05-08-2010, 07:26 AM
I just got the wife a new camera, the Canon EOS Rebel XSI, with a EF 28-135mm Wide angle Zoom, and a EF 70-300mm Zoom lens, both with Image stabalizing and Auto focus, so automated I took this picture by just aming and shooting the thing. We like it a lot!




http://i934.photobucket.com/albums/ad185/Musickbk/NEWCAMERAPHOTOS010.jpg

MikeB
05-08-2010, 02:10 PM
Brady,
I have been Canon user since 1972 and have had some very high end film cameras but now I am just a part time digital comsumer user and bought a Canon Rebel XSi when it first came out from Costco. I can't use all the features it has. I love it. I would buy the Canon Rebel Ti1 today. I would check Sams Club or Costco for their package deals. Great prices today. Now having said that... Many people today are selling their gear so check out Craigslist in your area and see what is available. You might score better with a higher end camera for a much better price than retail.

MikeB
05-08-2010, 02:13 PM
Byron,
No part of that photo is in focus. What happened? I know the Canon XSi can do much better job than that.

subroc
05-08-2010, 02:32 PM
Byron,
No part of that photo is in focus. What happened? I know the Canon XSi can do much better job than that.

I think it is a bit soft as well...

but, lets remember, this isn't a photograhy review site.

Byron Musick
05-09-2010, 07:55 AM
Byron,
No part of that photo is in focus. What happened? I know the Canon XSi can do much better job than that.

Not sure what happened, could be I have bad eye's and need glasses!

What does soft mean anyway? :)

subroc
05-09-2010, 09:12 AM
Not sure what happened, could be I have bad eye's and need glasses!


What does soft mean anyway? :)



A soft image is less than sharp. A sharp image has, within the focus plane, sharp edges. This image has neither. I downloaded the image and opened it in DPP and you appear to have focused on the nose or a bit above it. For that image that is where I would have focused, although the eye may be a good choice as well. With a dogs long head and snout, depth of field (DOF) matters. A wider DOF will give you more in focus area.

I pulled the exif as well to see if anything stood out. I expect the shutter speed was a bit slow. Also, I am not sure AI Focus AF is what I would use for general purpose. One shot may be a better choice. Increase the ISO to increase the shutter speed. Metering mode is probably OK.

Tv( Shutter Speed ) 1/125

Av( Aperture Value ) 5.6

Metering Mode Evaluative Metering

ISO Speed 250

Lens EF28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM

Focal Length 135.0mm

AF Mode AI Focus AF

pixel shooter
05-09-2010, 10:00 AM
A good rule of thumb is your shutter speed should be double your focal distance, so if you are 135mm, 1/300 of a second shutter speed would have been what you should try to achieve to get sharper pics. There is where you can bump your ISO or lower your aperture to achieve the higher shutter speed. the lower your aperture, the more difficult it gets to get your whole image in focus, has a shallow DOF. Im not a big flash fan but will help immensely to get sharp subjects. Using your longest range on a zoom lens as well will sometimes produce softer pictures hence why I prefer fixed focal lengths .

Now these little guys can be a challenge to photograph but can easily be done with a bit of practice :)

http://www.pbase.com/keithrankin/image/97653916/original.jpg

dnf777
05-22-2010, 09:13 AM
When shooting wildlife or dogs (sometimes one in the same) there is not as much abstract or artistic buffering that viewers will appreciate. The pros will say that wildlife shots must be RAZOR sharp to gain acceptance. A rule of thumb I use to judge shots, is if you zoom in during post-exp processing, its nice to see your reflection in the eye of your subject. This was a downy woodpecker who stunned himself on our patio door, and was kind or concussed enough to let me get some shots. You can see me standing on the deck taking the shot, in his eye up close. This is not a good shot IMO. I was intentionally trying to blur the background with a large aperture, but at that focal length, my DOF was only a centimeter or two. Lots of fun experimenting. Every type of photography and even just different lenses require a whole 'nother skill set to master.
http://i982.photobucket.com/albums/ae306/dnf777/DSC_0123_2.jpghttp://i982.photobucket.com/albums/ae306/dnf777/DSC_0123.jpg

Tim McGarry
07-08-2010, 08:49 AM
We have tons of Canon products. Our first DSLR, a Canon 40D (bought with a very standard 28-135mm lens) is in your price range, and with a lil practice after reading through the manual, will give you great images.

fetchitupup
07-08-2010, 07:27 PM
I bought a Canon XSi because I don't think i will use the movie mode very much. I have a video cameria for that. I thought about the Nikon D5000, but got a little better deal on the Canon and I have been a Canon user for a long time so I was a little more familiar with the camera. Good suggestions on the shutter speed versus focal length.