Post # 1
So everyone keeps asking me what I want for Christmas already, and this year I am at a complete loss except for some movies and Chapstick, the ultimate gift, right ladies?! 😛
My mind keeps going to a camera, a DSLR to be more specific. Right now I have a Sony point-and-shoot, but I’d maybe like an entry-level DSLR because I would like to take high quality photos when our baby is born. We also go to concerts. It would be great to have a camera that can take nice quality pics when its dark, or I am far away.
Problem is, I have no idea exactly what I want or should be looking at. I know I don’t want a professional DSLR with a bunch of differnet lenses and a difficult setup. I want an entry-level DSLR, takes high quality photos, works well in dim light or dark. Something a step up from a point and shoot, but a step down from a professional camera.
I was looking at these:
Does anyone have any suggestions?
Post # 3
I have the Nikon D3100 and I love it. I’ve found it really easy to learn and use.
Are you by chance a member of Costco? I got mine there and it came with a better lens than the one on the D3200 you posted. Mine came with the 18-55mm, but also the 300mm lens as well. It was all packaged together in a bundle at a discounted price.
Post # 4
I have been looking too and noticed that it’s way cheaper to get an extra lens when you get a camera, vs getting it after the fact. I’ve heard mixed reviews– some friends never switch lenses but others have noted that their pictures got way better when they got a better lens.
I don’t know a ton about these but considering packages like this… comes with 2 lenses.
Post # 5
The Canon Rebel series of cameras are great. They’re great for people just getting into DSLR photography and for everyday use. They are not that much different from the point and shoot kind, and not at all different from the older, traditional SLR film cameras. I actually still have and use an old Minolta SLR, and also a Leica, both film cameras. Finding film is hard now, but it’s a better quality photo.
I used to have a Canon Rebel and I loved it. When I got really into photography I sold it and bought a top of the line Nikon with several lenses. The great thing about these cameras is you have more control over the focusing and you can switch out the lenses to get different kinds of effects (wide angle, fisheye, etc). I love the Nikon because there are more manual controls on it, and you’re not automatically forced into using the automatic focus like with the little point and shoots.
For everyday use, I’d recommend the T3 (the first one you posted). It takes decent video too, but if you want to take video I’d recommend getting a separate video camera just for that purpose.
Edit: Too bad it’s only coming with the 18-55 mm lens. They can at least throw in a second lens for you.
Post # 6
I would get the Nikon D3200 and then get an extra lens, probably a 50mm 1.4 or 1.8 for low light situations.
Post # 7
I have a Canon DSLR XSI. I love it.. But I often found myself leaving my camera at home because it’s heavy to lug around. I recently got a Sony NEX-6. They have awesome reviews, interchangable lenses and DSLR quality. They are much more compact, and do 1080 video!
I was recommended this camera by a vendor that works in the camera industry. He bought this camera for his Girlfriend, and said that some days he wishes he’d leave his $3k of camera gear and opt for something that produces great images with a fraction of the weight and bulk!
Don’t be fooled by it’s size, it’s a powerful camera!
Post # 8
Echoing Nikon owners here.
Darling Husband has one for his archtecture projects/models, and my brother had one when he was doing photojournalism. DH’s uncle is also a hobby photographer and loves his. Definitely recommend!
DSLR’s are way over my head, but I also have a great Nikon point-and-shoot. It’s a great brand.
Post # 9
Thanks so much for the suggestions and reviews, everyone. I am noting all of this down to relay to my husband. 🙂
Post # 10
I find it odd that this is my first post on here, but what the heck… I’m a pretty serious hobbyist shooting Canon for 10+ years now. Started with the first Rebel they made, so I’m biased toward Canon.
The t3 or t3i are both great. BUT I advise against a kit lens. Kit lenses are ‘meh’, and as you get into photography you’ll learn lenses are what matter. Especially for low light! The zoom range on the kit lens is ok, but the max aperture is 3.5-5.6 depending on the focal length you’re at.
For low light, you want a “fast” lens. Something with an aperture of at LEAST 2.8, ideally 1.4-1.8. Fast lenses are often more expensive, and often come in fixed focal lengths (they don’t zoom. You zoom with your feet.) Does this suck? Maybe, depending on what you’re shooting, and how much you hate to move. Over time, photogs pick up multiple fixed/prime lenses or faster zooms. For the t3i, a decent fast zoom would be the Canon EF-S 17-55 f/2.8 IS ($829… lenses cost more than cameras!)
If you can live w/o a zoom and want a great cheap standard do-it-all focal length, get the Canon 50mm 1.8 II ($110). 50mm is sort of what your eye sees. Even better, splurge on the 1.4 ($399). Eventually, add to your kit with something wider for landscape like 24mm, or telephoto, like 85 or 135mm.
All of that might sound complicated, but I assure you it’s not. Buy a good book or go online for tutorials!
And pleasepleaseplease do not buy your camera at Best Buy! Don’t listen to anyone who works there! Buy at B&H online, or even Amazon.
Post # 11
I just re-read your post and you mentioned being far away at times! If you’ll usually be far, a 50mm won’t hack it for you. Something like an 85mm is better. The Canon 85 1.8 is around $400 and is an incredible deal. However, it won’t work for snapshots of friends etc. You’ll need something standard (35-50mm) for that.
In any case, if you are going to concerts and shooting at the longer end of a kit lens @ 5.6, there won’t be enough light.
Post # 12
@selectedpoems: Haha I won’t be buying it at Best Buy (and I don’t think Darling Husband will be going in there either). It’s just the only place I looked since that is all we have locally (I used to work there, so I nkow how the sales people and retail world works with them–all too well actually, hence why I don’t think Darling Husband will shop there any time soon).
Thanks for the suggestions. I will look into everything you talked about. I knew Canon and Nikon would be the top picks, but having that lens information to provided is good to know. Thanks again!