Upgrade from Rebel XS to What?

Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by tom_collins|3, Dec 13, 2009.

  1. Hello everyone. I have owned my Rebel XS since August of this year and already feel like I'm ready to upgrade bodies. Biggest issue is having the auto-focus lock onto the wrong part of the image (background, instead of subject). Right now I mainly do family and children's portraits, but I also assist at weddings occasionally. I plan to get into HS senior portrait work and would love to get more into weddings. What is the next logical upgrade, body wise and what would be the benefits of the upgrade? I'm not able to spend more than about $800 right now so I'd definitely be looking at picking up something used. What does everyone recommend?
  2. Get a part time job and save enough to buy the EOS 7D.
  3. Before upgrading, I would try (if you have not already) changing to center-point only focusing for uses like that. With all the points operating, the camera can lock onto anything that is in focus at any point. A common approach is to use the center point and then, if you have to, keep the focus locked and re-compose.
    The autofocus systems on the next step up (40D, 50D) are better, but they use a similar configuration of points. I use a 50D, which I love, but I usually do center point only.
  4. Angel, what would be the "bang for my buck" factor of going with a 7D? Do you have one?
    Dan, thanks for the suggestion. I actually do this currently, I guess I just don't always lock the focus consistently while re-framing.
  5. The new auto focus system will get every one of your shots 100% of the time. Plus the low light, rugged weather sealed body, and maybe video if you are into that. Its the BEST APS-C camera available right now, no matter what the other guys say.
  6. That's sounds good to me, although not too interested in video right now. I just want a camera that will perform and give me results. Are the 20 and 30D models worth looking into?
  7. Your problem with AF picking up the wrong subject is probably not going to go away with a different body. Your camera isn't even six months old - hang onto it a bit longer.
  8. You can get a 30D or 20D for cheap right now. I sold my 30D excellent condition for $310 on ebay. But you will probably not see any real difference in image quality, except a different type of prosumer body. Good camera to buy by the way, the 30 that is. You get more "pro" features. Like 1/8000 shutter speed, high flash sync speed 1/250th, and many more.
  9. I have to agree with Angel. The new AF on the 7D offers you so many options to approach a wide variety of situations. Spot AF, for instance, allows me to focus on a bird's beak while it's sitting on a branch with a busy background; my 30D would have hunted and eventually focused on the background. High ISO performance is excellent. Find a way to save money and get one. That's exactly what I did, and it was worth every bit of the effort. It's an outstanding camera!
  10. [[The new auto focus system will get every one of your shots 100% of the time]]
    This is complete and total BS. Anyone who makes claims like this should be ignored outright.
  11. I've had a 20d for about 4 years and was quite pleased with it with one exception...focusing in anything less than bright light. I just yesterday picked up the 7d.
  12. Chris,
    At the risk of sounding insulting, shouldn't a professional, or someone who is/wants to be heading in that direction be shooting (and focusing) portraits manually?
  13. Chris,
    I really think you need to understand your present camera very much better (especially the ability to choose individual focus points), before you go off and spend money on another one.
    No matter how much money you throw at this present problem of yours, it will not go away until you get-to-the-basics about choosing YOUR focus points and not accepting what the camera suggests.
  14. The number of photos I took during the first year with my EOS 300 (back in those (film) days :p) with focus errors decreased over time without having to buy a new body....
    Only time I kept getting focus errors were in low-light. I don't know if that is your problem?
    My first (&current) dslr, an EOS 20D, already had less of a problem with low-light. After attaching a wide aperture prime (sigma 30mm f/1.4), I almost never have any focus problem in low-light anymore...
  15. Dan, thanks for the suggestion. I actually do this [focus-recompose] currently, I guess I just don't always lock the focus consistently while re-framing.​
    Are you using one-shot focus setting? If it is set to AI focus then the camera may interpret the movement of the camera as a moving subject and re-focus.
    An alternative is to use the custom function to change the exposure-lock button to focus-lock. This will remove the possibility of slightly releasing the shutter button which would mean that it re-focuses.
    I agree you need to know your camera better and practice will be hugely beneficial.
  16. Mike, I am actually using AI Focus because I shoot kids a lot, so I need my camera to respond quickly if the subject moves. There are definitely times I could use one-shot instead and probably decrease my out of focus shots. Thanks for the tip. I also need to read up on the focus-lock feature. Thanks again.
  17. Biggest issue is having the auto-focus lock onto the wrong part of the image (background, instead of subject).​
    This is caused by one or both of two possibilities: 1) user error, and 2) defective camera. Assuming your camera is still under warranty, either problem can easily be fixed without throwing $800 at another camera. A Rebel XS is perfectly fine for portraits and weddings. In fact, it can handle almost anything you throw at it if you know how to use it. What "better" cameras offer are weather resistance (photography in inclement weather), faster AF (for things like sports) and higher frame rates (again for sports), none of which are particularly important for portraits and weddings. Traditionally, low light performance and reliability were other advantages, but with modern sensor technology and Rebel shutters now rated at 100,000 clicks and up, those issues are now more academic/theoretical than practical. Besides, you don't go shooting professionally without a backup body, right?
    If not, then take that $800 and get yourself a second, identical body so you can switch between them seamlessly. Failures almost never happen while the camera is sitting idle in your bag. They almost always happen while you're using the camera, and therefore at the worst possible time. Even a $6,000 1Ds can fail. A proper professional always has backup.
  18. Your best use of $800 would seem to be a photography course or two at the local community college. The way your original post reads, it sounds as though you are looking for new equipment to answer questions that can be best addressed with increased knowledge of the art and process of photography. I took several semesters worth of photography classes, and its the best money I ever spent on photography. Plus, it will be easier to network and to find jobs with the contacts you will inevitably make in that setting.
    Best of luck, happy holidays and have fun!
    Michael J Hoffman
  19. AI focus won't give good results when recomposing. À 7D won't help

    User error seems to be the problem.

    If there is an equipment problem I'd look at your lenses before your
    body. What do you use and how do you use them?

    Do you have à nice flash with invisible assist beams?

    The course suggestion might be the best of the above mentioned.

    And to answer your original question: a 50D is a good upgrade in my
    not-so-expert opinion.
  20. I am skeptical that upgrading will solve your focus issue. However, you may benefit from an increased continuous shooting rate if you are photographing moving subjects. That means 40D or up.

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