DSLR Cameras? What's good for a beginner?

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by CoastieRon, Jun 19, 2017.

  1. CoastieRon

    CoastieRon NES Member

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    My daughter has picked yet another new hobby that she wont stop pestering and researching about. She wants to buy a DSLR camera and her money is burning a hole in her pocket. So I ask you, NES braintrust, what is a solid entry level sub $500 DSLR camera set up for my beloved little pest of a cherub to work her ass off to earn enough to buy a new camera?

    She is looking a a Canon Rebel EOS T5
     
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  2. whatluck

    whatluck Member

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    D3000
     
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  3. Golddiggie

    Golddiggie NES Member

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    Find an older model EOS D series body and get a good lens for it.

    B&H has a couple of that set in your $500 price range... A 40D, 1D Mark II, and 5D...

    https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/801578383-USE/canon_1901b004_eos_40d_slr_digital.html
    https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/801585870-USE/canon_9313a002_eos_1d_mark_ii_digital.html
    https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/801556070-USE/canon_0296b002_eos_5d_digital_camera.html

    IMO, any 'kit' that includes a lens for under $500 is crap. If you expect her to break it, fine. If not, invest in getting a solid first camera.

    For the record, I've had Canon EOS cameras for over 15 years. I progressed from an used 10D until I picked up a 1Ds Mark III and 1D Mark III body. I sold off the 1D Mark III but kept the 1Ds Mark III. I also have all 'L' class lenses (all f2.8). You never regret buying great glass. Great glass will last longer than you have the body it connects to. I would also advise to NOT get any EF-S lenses. They are more limited (cheaper too).
     
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  4. 7OGlock

    7OGlock NES Member

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    She may want to look into mirror-less cameras, they are getting pretty good. Not quite the speed of a dslr, but close. DSLRs will still do better for low-light and fast action sequences, but the mirror-less cameras are about the same for everything else and a lot smaller, so more likely to actually bring along and use. The Sony Alphas are usually a good bet, I haven't looked at them recently though.
     
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  5. gunofthrones

    gunofthrones Member

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    Canon 6D.

    Lens: 16-35 2.8, 24-70 2.8, prime lens 85mm 1.2 F

    Those will cover most of hobby needs.
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2017
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  6. bill o

    bill o Member

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    Any DSLR plus a class or two at NESOP or similar. The camera doesn't matter.
     
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  7. hikerlt

    hikerlt Member

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  8. kalash

    kalash NES Member

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    This.
     
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  9. toekneepea

    toekneepea NES Member

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    Take her to a camera store (Hunts not Best Buy) and let her handle the cameras to see which system fits her hands better. Back when I was trying to figure out which way to go I rented both for A weekend... I understood and liked Nikon better and that's what I went with - the lenses are more important, start with a 50 1.8 and go from there.

    B&H in NYC (online too) has the best prices and no sales tax...
     
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  10. SKumar

    SKumar NES Member

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    I'm a Nikon guy, but for a beginner, I would go with Canon. They're like the "Apple" of DSLRs.
     
  11. wahsben

    wahsben NES Member

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    She picked an expensive hobby especially if she gets serious about it. Quality lenses are more important than the body but it also depends on what she wants to shoot. If it's portraiture and people photos the requirements are different than if it's nature/wildlife or if it's sports/action photography etc.
    Golddiggie's recommendation is good but just one of the L lenses is going to cost well over $500.00 so for her starting out she'll have to consider different lenses.
    He's also recommending a full frame sensor instead of the cropped sensors which use the EF-S lenses but full frame will cost you more.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Nice lenses but each one of these will cost over $500.00

     
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  12. gunofthrones

    gunofthrones Member

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    If she's not serious about it, start with 50mm prime and let her go take some photo first. Although lenses cost a lot ,they hold value. 8-10 years won't matter
     
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  13. gunofthrones

    gunofthrones Member

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    $500? I missed that part, that... could be tough.
     
  14. SKumar

    SKumar NES Member

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    The way I got good at photography fast is by using prime lenses only. My dad gave me his D7000 which he never used. Nikon is great because the vintage prime lenses work 99% as good as newer models. I started with 50/1.4 and 105/2.5 (both converted to AI to work with newer cameras). Maybe the OP can find a good used Nikon and go the same route I did?
     
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  15. Tibs

    Tibs Member

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  16. Rob Boudrie

    Rob Boudrie NES Member

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    Cannon and Nikon both make great units. One thing to look for is the image sensor size - the higher end ones use "full frame" sensors. With those, a 300mm lense is like a 300 on an old 35mm camera. With partial sensor cameras, the effective focal length of lenses is longer since only the center of the image is being recorded.
    The big thing you lose with those old Nikon lenses is the high tech electronic stuff in the lens, like auto focus.

    Nikon no longer offers parts of the AI conversions, but the conversion can be machined into the aperture ring on old lenses that were not converted.

    Cannon and Nikon both sell lenses from consumer grade to cost is no object professional grade lenses. In the Canon world the "L series" lenses (identified by a red ring around the lens) are the top of the line.
     
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  17. Varmint

    Varmint NES Member

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    I second this, although I'd recommend a 35mm rather than 50, it's much easier to use especially if any of your shooting is indoors.

    using a single prime lens like a 35 or 50mm will teach her about photography far better than a zoom lens, and her photos will look much better.
     
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  18. wahsben

    wahsben NES Member

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    Last edited: Jun 19, 2017
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  19. dw617

    dw617 Member

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    Whatever camera she buys, make sure it has the capabilities to work in full manual mode. Many low grade consumer cameras do not even offer full manual anymore. Best to learn the basics first.

    I started with a mid grade body Nikon and a 50mm lens years ago. Still have that 50, the body has long been sold. Hold off on the specialty lenses until she finds her style.

    The nice thing about Nikon is their F mount lenses are (mostly) compatible going back to their earliest SLR film cameras - the Nikon F. You can invest in Nikon glass and be sure it will work with any camera old or new (for the most part).
     
  20. mitch28

    mitch28 Member

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    Hunt's Canon Rebel T6 2 lens kit $499.99.
    Under budget!!

    - - - Updated - - -

    Product #1159C008
     
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  21. tbk5

    tbk5 Member

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    Another vote for used and for B&H PhotoVideo. I have been buying my gear there since 1978. They are top notch. Call them and tell them what you are trying to do and they will give you good advice.
     
  22. Varmint

    Varmint NES Member

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    A used D90 would be a great choice - it has more controls and easier to use than cheaper, newer cameras. Pair that with a Nikon 35mm ($150) or 50mm ($100-200) lens and that'd be a great starter kit.
     
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  23. dw617

    dw617 Member

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    +1 to this
     
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  24. Rob Boudrie

    Rob Boudrie NES Member

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    $500 is only for the most basic L lens. The interesting ones start in the 4 digits. The 300 Cannon L 2.8 is an incredible lens, goes for a bit over $6K and is worth it to the active pro.
     
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  25. LuvDog

    LuvDog NES Member

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    Haha. This struck me as funny... there are plenty of Nikon users who keep their settings on auto.
    And there a plenty of pros using canon.

    Its a toss up... both Nikon and Canon have their followings.

    Get a good used body. I believe both offer refurbished straight from the manufacturer. Also invest in good lenses. The kits are a waste.
     
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  26. Rob Boudrie

    Rob Boudrie NES Member

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    An advantage of the pro series lenses is that you will get service designed to keep professional photographers happy.
     
  27. SKumar

    SKumar NES Member

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    That's a plus IMO. For a beginner, nothing is better than full manual control: manual shutter speed, manual f-stop, manual ISO, manual focus. You learn the technical fundamentals way faster this way. It's the equivalent of driving stick shift.
    Also, most Nikon DLSRs have a dot in the viewfinder corner that blinks when you're perfectly focused.

    Correct. I bought my vintage lenses on ebay, had them sent directly to some guy in Michigan who converted them flawlessly for like $25 each. Here's a 50/1.8 AI for a mere $60.
     
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  28. Spanz

    Spanz NES Member

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  29. mwalsh9152

    mwalsh9152 Member

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    As someone already said, she really needs to get the different camera bodies into her hands to see what fits her best. My big hands cant easily manipulate a Canon Rebel, but then a girl with small hands could likely have the opposite problem.

    That said, I still have my first DSLR body, its Canon EOS 20D with very low use. I used it a bit, then it became a backup. I dont think its been used since my 5D failed on my honeymoon 5 years ago. Looks like they're worth about $100 these days, but I might be convinced to take other forms of payment if dad is willing to crack open his humidor and surprise me.

    As for lens' I started off with the Canon 50MM prime lens. Great lens for the money. Then I bought a Sigma 24mm-60mm for probably around $300-350 I was able to take some fantastic pictures with those lens' paired with the 20D body.
     
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  30. Rob Boudrie

    Rob Boudrie NES Member

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    Watch out for terms like "Prime Lens". If it's Canon it's not their actual "prime" (as in top of the line) unless it has the red ring (L series).
     
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