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First camera for newspaper journalist
I'm a news editor at my university paper (so am interested in writing as a career), but I've come to realise the importance of having a camera when I can't get a photographer at the event I'm covering (fairly varied types: indoors, speaking events, rallies, random outdoors, etc.). I'm not really sure what type of camera I want, let alone which specific one, so any advice with either point would be appreciated. (If my needs are suited with something up to $300 that's great, but I'm happy to spend twice that or a bit more if it's worth it to get a DSLR and/or a better lens.).

As I mentioned, the photos would mainly be inserted into newsprint. It could fill one tabloid page (~8x10, 200dpi) or smaller, so I'm guessing ~6MP should be more than enough. Because all the photos will be post-processed and the shots aren't meant to be viewed in the camera, I don't care about whether there's an LCD screen. And I'm not covering sports, so I don't need anything with fast shutter speed, but I certainly wouldn't mind it..

Because I'm tall I can take shots from far, but a decent zoom would probably be useful. Also, with height comes big hands, so I wouldn't mind a larger camera..

But I guess the most important thing (that I've gathered after reading some of these forums) is that I'm not exactly sure where I'm going with this. I don't see myself going pro, but I'd be interested in learning more about photography, especially as I love to tweak things. And while I wouldn't mind the camera being expandable (I assume I can do with only one lens now, if it's a camera that can change lenses), I'm looking to keep this camera for a while, so I'm happy to put some money and time into it..

So while I'll certainly go to a camera shop and actually try out the camera I'd buy, any advice would be much appreciated..

Thanks,.

Telso..

Comments (10)

For such events, you can hardly afford to miss the shot while your camera is extending it's lens and later trying hard to focus. Isn't it? So get a DSLR only..

DSLRs enable live tracking of subjects (true optical viewfinder). These startup almost instanteneously and focus fast even in low light (than a typical P&S). Shutter lag is also less.A camera with dedicated AF assist lamp will be added advantage.Nikon D40/D40x (budget choices, have AF assist lamp). Pentax K100D super..

Pentax K10D. Bang for the bucks and is larger and more capable too (larger viewfinder, weather seals, dust reduction, in-built I.S., better build).Nikon D80Even the cheapest of DSLR will be faster and better in low light (indoors)..

Telso wrote:.

I'm a news editor at my university paper (so am interested in writingas a career), but I've come to realise the importance of having acamera when I can't get a photographer at the event I'm covering(fairly varied types: indoors, speaking events, rallies, randomoutdoors, etc.). I'm not really sure what type of camera I want, letalone which specific one, so any advice with either point would beappreciated. (If my needs are suited with something up to $300that's great, but I'm happy to spend twice that or a bit more if it'sworth it to get a DSLR and/or a better lens.).

Best Wishes, Ajayhttp://picasaweb.google.com/ajay0612..

Comment #1

There's a million choices..

I used to shoot university newspaper pictures with a twim lens reflex (research project for you look for Minolta Autocord).

Go buy a Canon Rebel XTi with the 18-55mm kit lens and a Canon 50mm f1.8 lens and a Canon 430EX flash and a Canon off camera shoe cord two or three..

And Photoshop Elements..

BAK..

Comment #2

Photojournalism calls for a DSLR. But, a $600 budget doesn't go very far in that realm..

The Nikon D40, Olympus E410/E510, and Pentax K100D are excellent values, but are all tiny. I have average hands and find the D40 hard to hold (I love it anyway). The Pentax K10D is a larger, semi-pro body and is a steal at it's present price..

The included lenses are all of decent quality, but lack telephoto range. You really want something like an 18-200 zoom. And, you probably don't want a 2 lens setup since you need to be ready to shoot, not changing lenses..

So, I'd recommend the K10D with the Pentax 18-250 lens. About $1100 combined. You could save $100 or so by getting a Sigma or Tamron lens. The equivalent Nikon would be the D200/D300 with 18-200, well over $2000..

If your budget doesn't permit that, you're probably stuck with a 2 lens setup. The E510 or D40 are the best for the money. The D40 has slightly better low light performance, but the E510 has image stabilization in the body. The Nikon 55-200 is available in a VR (image stabilized) version, highly recommended..

Another option would be used. The Nikon D70 is much larger than the D40, and is pretty cheap used. It and an 18-135 would fit your budget, but leave you without image stabilization. It and an 18-200 would be awesome, but set you back close to $1000...

Comment #3

Telso wrote:.

...I've come to realise the importance of having acamera when I can't get a photographer at the event I'm covering(fairly varied types: indoors, speaking events, rallies, randomoutdoors, etc.). I'm not really sure what type of camera I want, letalone which specific one, so any advice with either point would beappreciated. (If my needs are suited with something up to $300that's great, but I'm happy to spend twice that or a bit more if it'sworth it to get a DSLR and/or a better lens.)... Telso.

If you want the ablility to reliably capture any sport images you will need a dslr. If you see yourself photographing as a news professional after leaving school go with Canon. Think of the body as an interchangeable part of a permanent lens collection..

If as you anticipate this is an occasional assignment needing the odd image there are several superzoom bridge cameras that will do a good job for you and fall within your budget..

REd..

Comment #4

Go for a DSLR. The compacts and bridge cameras work too slowly for journalist work. You'll be multi-tasking so the camera has to work fast and do exactly what you ask it to do. Image stabilisation will help. As you're a people photographer, research any half-shut eye (lazy eye) flash issues in the forum for the camera of your choice. Eg.

You cannot check for this at an ongoing event and it always seems to happen to the best shot. (A pre-flash exposure issue.).

If you don't want to invest in a load of pro system equipment I think you might enjoy the Olympus 510 or Pentax K100..

Otherwise go for Canon or Nikon. This may also be beneficial in so far as others in the trade will have the same gear enabling you to borrow specialist equipment from colleagues..

John.Please visit me at:http://www.pbase.com/johnfr/backtothebridgehttp://www.pbase.com/johnfr/digital_dartmoor..

Comment #5

You say you've got big hands, so I would be wary of the Canon XT/XTI. They have smaller grips than others, and I found them uncomfortable to hold. That being said, you can't go wrong with any of today's (or even yesterday's) DSLRs. Very important to get to a store and feel them up. Then get a kit, preferable with two lenses, a short zoom and a longer zoom. There are great deals to be had on the Olympus line (that's just the line I'm most familiar with).

If you don't want to spend that much, the E-330 (older model) is available for I think a couple hundred less..

Image control:Zoom outZoom 100%Zoom inExpand AllOpen in new window.

Http://www.pbase.com/jfinite..

Comment #6

You might find the Canon G9 useful..

Now let me say immediately that I'd actually recommend any DSLR to you as a better tools. The quality, flexibility and control are simply beyond any non-DSLR. A second hand DSLR would be fine, or an end of line model..

The G9 has the advantage of being a compact, and perhaps a useful choice if you need something to be very portable. An alternative might be the A650 IS, which is very similar but lacks several features ( like the RAW format and the ability to use good external flashes )..

For your budget I think a DSLR with twin lenses will be just outside your reach ( that $600 limit ). If you don't need a long zoom then any of them are good. You might pick up a second hand lens later ? I have a K100D and think it's great, but of course it simply suits me..

I'd suggest the Fuji S6000/6500 or S9100/9600 as possible cheaper altrenatives, but, like the G9, not DSLRs, but versatile cameras..

Ultimately for print a DSLR is best and everything else is a compromise..

Someone mentions Photoshop. There are far cheaper alternatives and this is overkill. Your camera will come with software anyway..

StephenG.

Pentax K100DFuji S5200Fuji E900PCLinuxOS..

Comment #7

Maybe you can find a used E300 dSLR with 14-45 lens on Ebay for $250-300? Very good camera - only issue is high noise if the light calls for ISO 800-1600 and will that matter on newsprint?..

Comment #8

I think you should take a DSLR, too. But I see no reason to take a new one (especially considering your budget). You don't need speed, you don't need lots of MP. And the new one's you could perhaps afford are very tiny. The Rebel XTi, Nikon D40, etc. are for sure good cameras, but for me they are much too small.

It feels really great in my hands. It's not the newest model, but it's not too old..

Printing quality is normally not so good, that you can see the differences in lens-quality, so you could start with something like 18-55 if you want to save money. You will see afterwards, if you need more tele (Sigma 55-200 is very cheap for example and quality is okay) or a faster lens (e.g. 50mm 1.8).

BUT: I'd definitely take an external flash. That's IMHO very important for your purposes.Of course there are other manufacturers than Nikon, too!.

I own a Fuji S9600(9100) (a bridge camera) and use it regularly for newspaper work, because I don't have a DSLR of my own at the moment. It's really a good camera, especially for a non-DSLR, but a DSLR gives you real advantages...

Comment #9

The 510 is not Tiny in any way. Neither is the Pentax. The 410 is and I have not held the D40..

MaddogOlympus E-500, Olympus E-510..

Comment #10

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