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Help choosing a camera!
Hi all,.

I've been doing research for weeks, and I'm stuck. I'm trying to decide between the Pentax K10D and the Olympus E-510. Here's what I primarily do: macro photography in a studio, but also quite a bit outdoors; portraits, almost entirely using available light (but that could change); low-light shots of bands and other performing groups. I was originally considering the Nikon D-80 and the Canon XTi, but the lack of in-camera shake reduction in both deterred me. I'm just starting out, and don't have a ton of money for lenses, so the idea of spending more money every time I buy a lens just to get the stabilization is not so appealing. If I'm on the wrong track with this, I would love for someone to tell me.

I know the Canon has it too, but I've heard some not-so-great things about the lower-level Canon and Nikon slrs. My one caveat about eliminating those two makes: I know I'm buying into a systemwould I be better off getting a Canon or Nikon for that reason? Also, I would love to hear people's take on Olympus' live view and it's usefulness (need?) for macro photography. I have to say I like the simplicity of the Pentax (the Olympus has a zillion buttons), and I'm really drawn to some of the featuresthe RAW button, the anti-shake switch, etc. But the Olympus' live view is one of the things holding me back..

So I'm leaning more toward purchasing the K10D. Here's my other thing: my artistic eye is advanced far beyond my camera skillswith that I'm really more beginner-intermediate. I'm self taught, and obsessed (in a good way). I want this to be my career, so I want a camera that I can grow into. I don't want to have to buy another body in a year or so as my skills improve (I'd rather be buying lenses!). I read a review saying that the K10D was a camera for people who like to tinker like they did with filmbasically, it sounded like they were saying it was for people who are pretty advanced.



One last thing: I know that a bunch of new models will be coming out shortly. Am I better off waiting to see if something else better comes out?.

I went to a few camera stores with some of these questions, and found the salespeople disappointingly lacking in the helpful information department. I apologize for being so long-winded, so thanks to those of you who've read this. Help would be very much appreciated...

Comments (5)

I have the E-510 and it is ideal for macro, becuase of the Live View, which allows you to compose the picture on the LCD screen; this is more skeleton-friendly than crouching while looking through the viewfinder. You can also set the color more exactly, because when the change the white balance setting, the screen colors change, too. There is a custom setting which allows very precise color matching, which can only be done with Live View engaged..

There will always be more advanced cameras coming out every few months, at least for a long time to come. A new model is good, because then they cut the price on the old one. I just got the E-510 with the two kit lenses for $549.http://www.pbase.com/oldhiker..

Comment #1

Therose17 wrote:.

Hi all,.

I've been doing research for weeks, and I'm stuck. I'm trying todecide between the Pentax K10D and the Olympus E-510. Here's what Iprimarily do: macro photography in a studio, but also quite a bitoutdoors; portraits, almost entirely using available light (but thatcould change); low-light shots of bands and other performing groups.I was originally considering the Nikon D-80 and the Canon XTi, butthe lack of in-camera shake reduction in both deterred me. I'm juststarting out, and don't have a ton of money for lenses, so the ideaof spending more money every time I buy a lens just to get thestabilization is not so appealing. If I'm on the wrong track withthis, I would love for someone to tell me. Also, the automaticsensor cleaning in the Olympus and Pentax are a bonus.

My one caveat about eliminatingthose two makes: I know I'm buying into a systemwould I be betteroff getting a Canon or Nikon for that reason? Also, I would love tohear people's take on Olympus' live view and it's usefulness (need?)for macro photography. I have to say I like the simplicity of thePentax (the Olympus has a zillion buttons), and I'm really drawn tosome of the featuresthe RAW button, the anti-shake switch, etc.But the Olympus' live view is one of the things holding me back..

So I'm leaning more toward purchasing the K10D. Here's my otherthing: my artistic eye is advanced far beyond my camera skillswiththat I'm really more beginner-intermediate. I'm self taught, andobsessed (in a good way). I want this to be my career, so I want acamera that I can grow into. I don't want to have to buy anotherbody in a year or so as my skills improve (I'd rather be buyinglenses!). I read a review saying that the K10D was a camera forpeople who like to tinker like they did with filmbasically, itsounded like they were saying it was for people who are prettyadvanced.



One last thing: I know that a bunch of new models will be coming outshortly. Am I better off waiting to see if something else bettercomes out?.

I went to a few camera stores with some of these questions, and foundthe salespeople disappointingly lacking in the helpful informationdepartment. I apologize for being so long-winded, so thanks to thoseof you who've read this. Help would be very much appreciated..

Disclaimer: I own a Pentax but not the K10d. I'm very pleased with my camera and lenses..

I'll commit heresy and suggest you ask your specific questions in the Olympus SLR and Pentax SLR forums. Generally the folks in those forums will tell you if the camera isn't suited to your needs, and they'll recommend another camera or brand..

I can see an advantage to having live view for macro work. Some like the idea for macro work, some don't. My P&S has a tilt swivel lcd and it's very handy for closeup shots near the ground. My SLR doesn't have live view and I don't find it a huge hassle but that's me. I also end up in contortion positions or laying on the ground to look through the optical view finder..

Personally I bought the Pentax because it's the only system that gave me the fixed focal length lenses I wanted. The lenses were more important to _me_ than live view for macro work. Not to mention I don't think any SLR's have tilt swivel LCD's with live view (I may be mistaken)..

PS: Also budget for a good tripod, tripod head, and lighting...

Comment #2

Therose17 wrote:.

Hi all,.

I've been doing research for weeks, and I'm stuck. I'm trying todecide between the Pentax K10D and the Olympus E-510. Here's what Iprimarily do: macro photography in a studio, but also quite a bitoutdoors; portraits, almost entirely using available light (but thatcould change); low-light shots of bands and other performing groups.I was originally considering the Nikon D-80 and the Canon XTi, butthe lack of in-camera shake reduction in both deterred me. I'm juststarting out, and don't have a ton of money for lenses, so the ideaof spending more money every time I buy a lens just to get thestabilization is not so appealing. If I'm on the wrong track withthis, I would love for someone to tell me. Also, the automaticsensor cleaning in the Olympus and Pentax are a bonus.

My one caveat about eliminatingthose two makes: I know I'm buying into a systemwould I be betteroff getting a Canon or Nikon for that reason? Also, I would love tohear people's take on Olympus' live view and it's usefulness (need?)for macro photography. I have to say I like the simplicity of thePentax (the Olympus has a zillion buttons), and I'm really drawn tosome of the featuresthe RAW button, the anti-shake switch, etc.But the Olympus' live view is one of the things holding me back..

So I'm leaning more toward purchasing the K10D. Here's my otherthing: my artistic eye is advanced far beyond my camera skillswiththat I'm really more beginner-intermediate. I'm self taught, andobsessed (in a good way). I want this to be my career, so I want acamera that I can grow into. I don't want to have to buy anotherbody in a year or so as my skills improve (I'd rather be buyinglenses!). I read a review saying that the K10D was a camera forpeople who like to tinker like they did with filmbasically, itsounded like they were saying it was for people who are prettyadvanced.



One last thing: I know that a bunch of new models will be coming outshortly. Am I better off waiting to see if something else bettercomes out?.

I went to a few camera stores with some of these questions, and foundthe salespeople disappointingly lacking in the helpful informationdepartment. I apologize for being so long-winded, so thanks to thoseof you who've read this. Help would be very much appreciated..

Hi.

Both those cameras are very good, and probably as good as it gets currently in terms of bang for buck. For macros they would both be excellent (with live view probably a little to the Oly) for out doors , available light portarits ..probably the K10d (excellent wether sealing plus the larger sensor)....for bands....while people do use them and get some excellent results...they are both closer to my last choice than first (which just means there are not really any "bad" cameras)..

I mainly shoot bands....or at least did...having a break...which is why I currently stick to the 6mp Pentaxes (K100d and IST*D) both of which have a usable iso 3200 that the K10d and Oly do not..

In this regard....THIS week I would opt for a 6mp camera for bands....technology is developing so fast that larger mp cameras will be even better soon....already is at a price via Nikon D3. (edit...I am not caomparing a K100d with a d3 or pro Canon...just saying that Nikon have made remarkable advances in high isos other than by the sensor alone)..

If the Pentax K20d with 14+ megapixels is as good as the k100d at iso 3200 I will be very happy indeed....but thats next week...ok maybe a few more...

I shoot jpegs and do not like post processing hundreds of photos..

Neil..

Comment #3

Mrxdimension wrote:.

I can see an advantage to having live view for macro work. Some likethe idea for macro work, some don't. My P&S has a tilt swivel lcdand it's very handy for closeup shots near the ground. My SLRdoesn't have live view and I don't find it a huge hassle but that'sme. I also end up in contortion positions or laying on the ground tolook through the optical view finder..

Nothing wrong with getting on the same level as your subject there are magnified optical angle finder addons for macro work if you need them though some genuine pentax and plenty from 3rd parties..

Personally I bought the Pentax because it's the only system that gaveme the fixed focal length lenses I wanted. The lenses were moreimportant to _me_ than live view for macro work. Not to mention Idon't think any SLR's have tilt swivel LCD's with live view (I may bemistaken)..

Doesn't the panasonic have one and the E-3 too? Both very expensive cameras just for the sake of live view. The E-330 has a tiltable one though...

Comment #4

Pentaxiantrooper wrote:.

Mrxdimension wrote:.

I can see an advantage to having live view for macro work. Some likethe idea for macro work, some don't. My P&S has a tilt swivel lcdand it's very handy for closeup shots near the ground. My SLRdoesn't have live view and I don't find it a huge hassle but that'sme. I also end up in contortion positions or laying on the ground tolook through the optical view finder..

Nothing wrong with getting on the same level as your subject thereare magnified optical angle finder addons for macro work if you needthem though some genuine pentax and plenty from 3rd parties..

Personally I bought the Pentax because it's the only system that gaveme the fixed focal length lenses I wanted. The lenses were moreimportant to _me_ than live view for macro work. Not to mention Idon't think any SLR's have tilt swivel LCD's with live view (I may bemistaken)..

Doesn't the panasonic have one and the E-3 too? Both very expensivecameras just for the sake of live view. The E-330 has a tiltable onethough..

You can always get a Zigview to provide a tilt swivel live view for a dslr...kinda expensive I believe and not as good as camera with live view but an option..

Neil..

Comment #5

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