Beginner cameras/equipment recommendations

Discussion in 'Beginner Questions' started by lynn_h|1, Nov 9, 2017.

  1. Lynn
    Rather than a new body, think about the lens and other "stuff."
    • Example1, I did a fair bit of night photography, so I needed a decent STABLE tripod and a remote release.
      • Warning a GOOD tripod is surprisingly expensive. I think there is a saying about tripods; pick any TWO: light, sturdy, cheap. Cuz you can't get all three.
    • Example2, my wife wanted to do close up of her plants, so I got a macro lens and 2-way focusing rail. She already had the tripod.
    • Example3, I got a 35mm f/1.8, because I do indoor high school sports photography (volleyball, basketball, etc.). With the slow 18-140 lens, I have to shoot at ISO 12800; with the faster 35/1.8 lens, I can shoot at ISO 3200 or even 1600, for better image quality.
    • Example4, I shoot a fair bit of events, where I need a flash, and all the 'stuff' that goes with a flash.
    • Example5, I was processing some RAW files after my nephew's wedding, on my laptop. My laptop did not have enough processing power to process the photos, and it was painfully SLOW. So I just converted enough photos to give them something quickly, then went home where I could do the processing on my faster desktop computer. So, if you do not have a current or recent computer, the slow sold computer could hamper your work.
    When you think about lenses, you should think about what you want to do, then design a complete kit, even if you do not get them all. This helps to plan the sequence of lenses, so you don't end up duplicating a lens by mistake, or getting a lens that you don't end up using much (been there, done that).
    • Example1, a natural progression from the 18-55 is a 55-200 or a 70-300. Just make sure you get the VR version (VR = Vibration Reduction). Today it does NOT make sense to buy a tele zoom without VR.
    • Example2, or going the opposite direction, for a WIDE lens, like a 12-24. Although that lens has significant overlap with your 18-55.
    • Example3, or a macro lens, if you want to do very close up stuff.
    BTW, I had a D70 that I bought in 2004. I used it for 12 years, and would still be using that camera, if it had not died. It did almost everything that I wanted it to. Today, it's only failure is a max ISO of 1600, that is too low for night and indoor sports. Everything else was just fine.
    I believe in milking all you can out of the gear you have. Until you hit a block, that only a new gear can solve.
    Though there is a point in between, where newer gear would make it easier to shoot. So you don't have to wait till you hit that wall.
    jamieconway and Moving On like this.
  2. I agree the other posters, stick with what U have until you know what U want
  3. I have a strong opinion on this Panasonic LUMIX FZ1000 4K QFHD/HD 16X since I have been using for 5 months now. Have not invested much time into photography yet but somehow managed to buy this awesome piece back then. Now I have no other option left except photography. Well, It has got Relatively large sensor with good image quality. Lumix DMC-FZ1000 is a very impressive superzoom camera with an F2.8-4, 25-400mm lens and a 1" sensor. What more to say.
  4. I agree with some above, that one should look at what is available used. D700 prices are pretty reasonable now, a little lower than when I bought mine two years ago.

    But a D300 and another lens might also be a good use for $1000.

    Used AI lens prices are very good, used AF lenses not all that bad, either.
  5. The D700 (and D300) have distinct handling advantages over the current low-end Nikons, if you don't mind the weight. They do lack some recent niceties such as the touch screen. They do, also, have ancient sensors in terms of the amount of per-pixel detail that they can capture. Much as I loved my D700, I'd be hesitant to recommend one over many more recent options.

    The FZ1000 has, I believe, pretty good reviews. Still, it's a compact - it would cost more to put equivalent lenses on a DSLR (although "equivalent" is the key point - that "400mm" f/4 end is f/7.1 in DX terms, and the 70-300mm f/3.5-6.3 AF-P isn't that expensive), but there are lenses you can put on a DSLR that are impossible with something like an FZ1000. It's a good and capable camera; is it a system from which you can grow as you can with a DSLR system? I'd argue otherwise, without in any way disparaging people who are using them.
  7. Great post...

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