You've come to right place if you're looking for some good stories, reliable recipes, interesting photos (if ever I figure out how to use my new camera), household tips, book recommendations, advice and discussion on everything from aquariums to zabaglione, and you'd like to read about the world according to me.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Choosing My First dSLR

I'm shopping for a new camera. It's going to be my first dSLR or Digital Single Lens Reflex camera. I have 2 "point-and-shoot" digital cameras, and I'm ready to graduate to a dSLR. Flabio, of course, thinks this is weird. Our conversation a few minutes ago went like this:

"But you have a camera."

"I know but it's a camera for idiots. You point it and press the button."

"Oh, you mean you're gonna stand there now for half an hour pressing buttons while everyone gets pissed off saying take the picture for Christ's sake!"

Yeah, that's what I'm going to do. I'm not an artist, but I think I could be good at photography. P/S camera #1, a Panasonic Lumix, is my favorite but it's lost in 15,000 pounds of boxes while Flabio and I get ready to move. As of this writing, almost all of the photos on this website were taken with that camera #1. So I recently bought a 2nd one, Canon SX120 IS, that I don't know how to use very well yet--and don't like too much. The photo above is a picture that I took last night with new camera #2. Not a very good photo, but I don't know the menus yet. Yes, thank you, I realize the exposure isn't right. Part of the problem is that this camera didn't come with a manual. I have to download it and print it. So I just printed the 150 pages, and now I can learn how this one works.

Both p/s cameras that I have allow for some manual manipulation, and I've read a bunch of books on the subject, so I think I'm ready. Or if I can borrow from a piano dealer friend of mine, the two criteria for buying a dSLR (or a piano) are 1) I want one and 2) I can afford it. The rest is commentary.

Since my way of doing things is to do lots of homework before making a decision like which one to buy, I've been frequenting two online forums for camera discussion Dpreview and Digital Photography School. Both forums are populated by people who know their stuff and you can ask tons of questions and read tons of articles.

One thing I've learned is that you're better off spending the money on the "glass" or lenses than the camera body, so I've already decided to get a bottom of the line entry-level dSLR, but get really good lenses. Then when I move up to a more expensive body, I'll already have great glass. Which brand? Well, that's a tough one. Canon and Nikon have roughly 80% of the dSLR market. I flirted briefly with going with Sony or Olympus, as some may argue that you get more camera for the same money. However, once you start buying dSLR cameras and lenses you are kind of marrying a brand, and it becomes a much tougher decision at a later date to change brands. So since I don't like the feel of a Canon camera, Nikon it is.

I'm preparing a spreadsheet of desirable lenses compiled and cross-referenced from articles by Ken Rockwell, Tim Stanley, Thom Hogan, and others. If anyone would like a copy of it, email me. March 7 is my birthday, and I want to be able to tell Flabio what I want; so if you'll excuse me, I have to get to work on my spreadsheet.

Labels: , ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home

Powered by Blogger

Subscribe to
Posts [Atom]