Which camera to buy- PENTAX - K-x 12.4-Megapixel DSLR, Canon EOS 40D, or Nikon D90???

Discussion in 'Sports' started by arianna_kitzberger, Sep 15, 2010.

  1. Which of these three cameras would you recommend for taking mostly fast-action shots in low-light without a flash, and why?
    PENTAX - K-x 12.4-Megapixel DSLR
    Nikon D90
    Canon EOS 40D
    Which one would you recommend, why, and with what lens ( preferably under $500).
  2. ...taking mostly fast-action shots in low-light without a flash,​
    Can you be more specific? Are you, say, in the benches at a stadium during football or courtside in a basketball game? Anyways, choose a correct lens first then brand/model. Probably Canon or Nikon due to lens choices...
  3. Can you be more specific?​
    From the almost identical questions she and someone with a similar name have been asking, she needs to shoot horse show stuff, jumping, etc. indoors without flash. See:
    http://www.photo.net/sports-photography-forum/00XGbN and http://www.photo.net/beginner-photography-questions-forum/00XHTd
    Few of us own multiple systems, so that we can't make comparisons between them based on first-hand knowledge. I know that (for a DX camera) I'm happy with my D90's performance in low light when used in conjunction with good noise reduction software. I have used Noise Ninja in the past, but I'm beginning to like the noise reduction in the current version of Photoshop. I know from your previous questions that your budget for this is limited. However, the latest D90-sized camera from Nikon, just announced, can be set to higher ISO values, suggesting that it might be better in low light, but, AFAIK, there are no independent tests of it yet.
  4. You don't have much of a budget for lenses, which pretty much means you won't be able to buy the fast IS or VR lenses you'll need. Given that, I would recommend the Pentax since it has built-in shake reduction and has excellent low light capabilities. Depends on what you're shooting though, because Pentax AF is not quite as fast as the others and SR does not help if your subjects are moving.
  5. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    you won't be able to buy the fast IS or VR lenses you'll need.
    I disagree with the advice "you won't be able to buy the fast IS or VR lenses you'll need. Given that, I would recommend the Pentax since it has built-in shake reduction"
    I disagree with the advice that IS VR or Built-in Shake Reduction is “needed”.
    The OP wants: "recommend [ations] for taking mostly fast-action shots in low-light without a flash
    Predicated upon: FAST ACTION SHOTS; in LOW LIGHT; and a very TIGHT BUDGET
    I would argue strongly that IS, VR and Built-in Shake Reduction, pale into insignificance behind the following criteria (in no particular order):
    • High ISO capacity
    • Low Noise at HIGH ISO
    • A compliment of fast PRIME lenses – available second hand.
    The Canon or Nikon Brand would be better suited, generally in regards to point three, IMO.
    The lens(es) to use (assuming Horse jumping) – will be predicated upon the SD (Shooting Distance).
    The closer you can get, the cheaper it will be for you, as if you can use a 50mm lens, both Canon and Nikon make an inexpensive, but fast and sharp 50/1.8. A similar inexpensive Prime lens might be availble for Pentax - I don't know.
    I am not sure of the Nikon AF system of lenses, as it applies to DSLR cameras and what lenses match with what cameras – this you need to find out.
  6. I agree that motion control (in the lens, or in the body) is more or less a non-issue when it comes to shooting low-light action. It's all about the shutter speed, because otherwise you can't freeze the subject motion. The only way to get the shutter speed is with either a high ISO or a wide aperture (or both!). The wide aperture is cheap enough on something like a 50/1.8, but that's likely to be too short for many equine shooting situations. The moment you have to get longer, the glass starts getting a lot more expensive (though the 85/1.8 is still not too bad). The clean, higher-ISO route depends on the camera body. Nikon's going to have the edge, there, over Pentax.
  7. Sorry, my bad. Way past my bedtime and I didn't read the original question carefully. I did, however, point out that SR does not help with moving subjects. I should perhaps also have added that IS and VR, which try to do the same thing as SR, will not help either.
  8. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    James . . . that's why there are others around to watch your back: it's a team effort.
  9. Thank you everyone for your input!
    In response to Hector, I did post a couple other times, and got those recommendations. That's why I posted again, and I apologize in advance if that wasn't what I should have done, I am new to this site.
    From what I've read, I've decided to go with the D90. Still figuring out the lens and such. Thanks again everyone :)
  10. Agreeeing with Matt, I'd get the Nikon 85 1.8. Even a used 70-200 2.8 is going to be way over $500 for the Nikon. A Sigma would be less however.
    I started shooting horse shows this summer, outdoors. I have read that even pro's dislike shooting indoor events as the lighting is really bad. Worse than high school gyms! I've have used the 85 1.8 occaissionally, but most often the 70-200.
    anyways, the 85 1.8 is a nice sharp prime, and should allow you to crop confidently to compensate for the lack of reach. And, you get quite a bit more light than a 2.8 lens. Even at f1.8 and the distance you will be from the horse and rider, your DOF should be pretty good as well.
    Hope to see some of your captures soon.
  11. Yes Steve, I shoot outdoors without a problem! It's the indoors that gets me. I'll see what I can get for my budget and post back in a bit, thanks!
  12. There shelfs full of D-90 in Costco with two kit VR lenses under @1200 in US dollars in one box
  13. Thanks Yury, I'll take a look!
  14. I vote for either the Nikon or the Canon. If you can't afford to buy high-speed glass (like the 70-200 2.8 by either company) you can rent it at any professional-level camera story in any major city. I have rented a 70-200 2.8 VR for about $40 for the weekend down the street here in Washington, D.C., when needed rather than laying out the close to $2,000 need to buy it for occasional use. Pentax is fine but it simply isn't available for rental, so it limits your options in that regard. There is also a world full of older fast Nikon and Canon glass available used, even in manual focus if you really need to scrimp. I would skip the kit lens -- too slow to be of use under low light -- and go with one or more used fast lenses instead. You can find Pentax lenses used, but as popular as Pentax once was I think the selection is still better with Nikon and Canon.
  15. You can get a 70-200 2.8 Sigma for Pentax for about 600-700 Euro (so less than 600 dollar). that's 15 times renting a Nikon or Canon lens. You don't need the VR or other stuf for Pentax, it's allready in the body. So just do your maths.

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