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p&s vs DSLR same price ?
What's the difference between a $500 P/S {G9} and a full DSLR of about the same cost ? Is it just a matter of size ? If they both cost about the same , I would imagine their innards ( sensors , ect.} are about the sameWhat gives ? Steve..

Comments (30)

DSLR is analog, converted to digital (what you see is what you get) different league with the p&s in terms of speed and low light capabilities..

Models like the G9 are categorized as high-end digital cameras that are "dSLR-like" but are still p&s in body and in soul...

Comment #1

Bulletproof96 wrote:.

DSLR is analog, converted to digital (what you see is what you get).

Huh?.

P&S and DSLRs are very different machines. A DSLR sensor has pixels that are 4-8 times larger that those of a P&S - that make a big difference in image quality, especially in low light. Another difference is the method used to auto-focus - SLRs use a beam-splitter, lenses and a special sensor to detect focus (much faster) and P&S cameras use contract-detecting methods using the main sensor..

Anyway, the $500 P&S is a high-end model (for it's type) and the $500 DSLR is a low-end model (for it's type). Realize also that to get the full advantage of a DSLR requires the purchase of additional lens(es).Davehttp://pixseal.com..

Comment #2

The inexpensive DSLR is intended to attract people who have never used one before, with a low price and a basic camera; but they lack lots of features and come with an inexpensive lens. To utilize the quality of the SLR you will need additional lenses, probably more expensive lenses, too. And eventually, you will want a more capable camera body. So, if you don't eventually want to spend more money, and if you don't want to change lenses, get a good P&S that has a long zoom. Of course, you can have both types, a good SLR for your "serious" work and a small camera (or two) for carrying around..

Http://www.pbase.com/oldhiker..

Comment #3

Oldhiker wrote:.

The inexpensive DSLR is intended to attract people who have neverused one before, with a low price and a basic camera;.

The DSLR camera is a basic in terms of adjustments compared to a pro camera but is light years ahead of the P & S in image quality..

But they lack lots of features.

That you would find on a sophisticated pro SLR.

And come with an inexpensive lens..

That is far suprerior most P & S lenses.

To utilize the quality of the SLR you will need additional lenses, probably moreexpensive lenses, too..

Where do you get that from? If you buy a Nikon D40x with an 18-135mm lens you have killer combination for all but the most specialsit of needs..

And eventually, you will want a more capable camera body..

And you won't want a more capable P & S? I would like a Ferrari but ....

So, if you don't eventually want to spend more money, and if you don't want to change lenses, get a good P&S that has a long zoom..

OK if you want average photos but try taking shots in poor light you will immediately see the difference..

Of course, you can have both types, a good SLR for your "serious" work and a small camera (or two) for carrying around..

Just like you can have a Beemer to drive and a motorcycle!Chris Elliott.

*Nikon* D Eighty + Fifty - Other equipment in Profile.

Http://PlacidoD.Zenfolio.com/..

Comment #4

You would be surprised how mediocre the kit lenses on entry level DSLR cameras can be. The better quality P&S lenses (yes even zooms) are at least as good. Example, the Leica lenses on Panasonic superzooms are what makes these cameras take good pictures..

Yes, DSLRs are better in low light and that is a sensor issue - not the lens..

Cheers..

Comment #5

A $500 P&S camera is near the top of it's class. And it costs $500. You don't need to spend a dime more. At this price, you may even get a Zeiss, Schneider, or Leica lens. And you will get histograms and real live view..

A $500 DSLR is at the bottom of it's class, very likely an entry model, and you need to spend an extra $1000 to just match the zooming range and Image Stabilization you will get on the $500 P&S camera. The kit lens that comes with it will be probably mediocre..

Having said that, there are still many good reasons to get a DSLR, and those reasons involve image quality, noise, low light performance and dynamic range..

But, your premise is flawed..

They just don't cost the same. Unless you want to compare a full featured high end P&S to a entry level DSLR with a cheap, or no lens, without live view, without IS, and with a 3X kit zoom lens rather than a 12X high quality zoom lens.MartyPanasonic FZ7, FZ20, FZ30, LX2Olympus C4000, C7000..

Comment #6

Beegle wrote:.

What's the difference between a $500 P/S {G9} and a full DSLR ofabout the same cost ? .

Usually, the P/S model will be a high-end P/S that is miniaturized, or that has a lens with a long (10x to 18x) zoom range. The lens might have extra light gathering capability (e.g., f/2.8 - 3.1; lower numbers are better). You may get image stabilization (IS). You may also get a very high megapixel count (although on a P/S, that will cost you in terms of noise)..

The DSLR will be an entry-level DSLR. Its optical viewfinder and controls (external convenience buttons, autofocus sensors, etc.) will be less convenient than those on higher-end DSLRs, something that you'll notice more if you're already into amateur photography. The kit lens will be an 18-55mm f/3.5-f/5.6 (i.e., a 3x zoom range, starting out a little wider than the zoom on most P/Ss, but without any exceptional light-gathering capacity. The DSLR body itself may have "only" 6 or 8 megapixels worth of resolution, but if you compare pictures taken from a 6 MP DSLR and a 12 MP P/S (at high ISO on each), the DSLR pictures will blow the P/S ones away..

The DSLR will have a shoe for a dedicated external flash unit, so if you want to spend the money, you can bounce the light off the ceiling or wall to avoid the "red-eye" and "cooked" flash look. Flash shoes are rare on P/S cameras; dedicated ones on P/S cameras, rarer still..

If they both cost about the same , I would imagine their innards ( sensors , ect.}are about the same ..

The sensor is much larger on a DSLR..

On P/S cameras, you frame the picture using "live view" on the LCD. The camera autofocuses using an iterative contrast detection algorithm on the internal version of that same image..

On DSLRs, you frame the picture using the optical viewfinder. Autofocus is based on a phase detection system which is generally faster than iterative contrast detection (if it can find a "lock"). There are a few DSLRs that offer "live view" and/or contrast detection autofocus as alternative modes, but for the most part, the only thing you use the LCD for is reviewing pictures and setting up the camera. It is dark (or just displaying camera settings) when you are composing a picture..

P/S cameras usually have an electronic viewfinder that is the same as the external LCD. (So add in the cost of the second LCD there.) DSLRs have the cost for the mirror/pentamirror or mirror/pentaprism mechanism that diverts light to the viewfinder and autofocus mechanism until the moment that you trip the shutter...

Comment #7

To say that a high end p/s has a great lens because it says Leica, Schneider or Zeiss doesn't mean it's a "real" Leica or CZ lens. An example, though not specifically a P/S one is the "Schneider-Kreuznach" lenses Samsung sells for the GX-10. They are exactly the same as the Pentax labeled counterpart and probably made in the same factory in Asia. There's a reason that top of the line German glass is really expensive and I doubt you are really getting it in a compact, though I have read the Leica branded lenses on Panasonics are quite good..

Also, I don't think you have to spent a LOT more to get comparable features in a DSLR a high end P/S. I'll pick 2 examples... Canon G9 at just under $500 and Pentax K100D + Tamron 18-200 at $720. I can't think of a significant feature that the G9 has that is missing on the DSLR. I also can't think of a single situation, that the DLSR wouldn't out perform the compact, other than in fitting in a pocket...

Comment #8

Rocklobster wrote:.

You would be surprised how mediocre the kit lenses on entry levelDSLR cameras can be..

Care to give us a link to a test report confirming this? Just because you say kit lenses are mediocre does not make them so. Here are the links to reports on Nikon's 3 kit lenses.

Http://www.photozone.de/8Reviews/lenses/nikkor_1855_3556_II/index.htmhttp://www.photozone.de/8Reviews/lenses/nikkor_1870_3545/index.htmhttp://www.photozone.de/8Reviews/lenses/nikkor_18135_3556/index.htm.

You will note this comment about the cheapest 18-55mm lens:.

"The resolution figures are actually very good and no worse than those of much higher priced models - truly remarkable.".

The Canon kit 18-55mm is weak:http://www.photozone.de/8Reviews/lenses/canon_1855_3556/index.htmbut still good enough to outperform most P & S..

The better quality P&S lenses (yes even zooms) are at least as good. Example, the Leica lenses on Panasonic superzooms are what makes these cameras take good pictures..

These lenses are mostly badge engineering and built down to a price. You are paying for the name and not for quality..

Yes, DSLRs are better in low light and that is a sensor issue - notthe lens..

Not just a sensor issue. A DSLR with kit lens will AF in light where a P & S will give up. You can also see much more through a DSLR VF..

Chris Elliott.

*Nikon* D Eighty + Fifty - Other equipment in Profile.

Http://PlacidoD.Zenfolio.com/..

Comment #9

OK... perhaps I did overstate the point......

But $720 is not $500..

These cameras really aren't the same price..

MartyPanasonic FZ7, FZ20, FZ30, LX2Olympus C4000, C7000..

Comment #10

Bulletproof96 wrote:dSLR is analog, converted to digital.

Not true at all....

DSLRs are not analog (film) cameras that have been converted to digital....

They are built as digital cameras. Sure, they can take 35mm film lenses but the camera bodies are *not* analog converted to digital....

BobPhotography is more about depth of feeling than depth of fieldhttp://www.pbase.com/mofongo..

Comment #11

Very true. When you resign yourself to the cost of professional gear (I'm sweating and contemplating a D3 preorder...ugh) $220 seems somewhat irrelevant, but I guess it's really not when you are not using it to pay the bills...

Comment #12

From 1996 till 2001 or so they were when Kodak owned the market. The Canon D30 started changing that. The last Franken DSLRs were probably the Fuji S2 Pro or the Kodak 14n series. Interesting note, the one concept that went fairly far into development, but never really took off was the creation of a sensor module shaped like a film canister / outstretched film so that it could be placed in a 35mm SLR...

Comment #13

As usual, Wrotniak has a good comment. He predicts the end of the SLR, as EVF cameras improve. Most interesting is his last paragraph; no matter what the camera, the photographer creates the image..

Http://www.wrotniak.net/photo/quest/q09.html.

Http://www.pbase.com/oldhiker..

Comment #14

Oldhiker wrote:.

The inexpensive DSLR is intended to attract people who have neverused one before, with a low price and a basic camera; but they lacklots of features and come with an inexpensive lens. To utilize thequality of the SLR you will need additional lenses, probably moreexpensive lenses, too. And eventually, you will want a more capablecamera body. So, if you don't eventually want to spend more money,and if you don't want to change lenses, get a good P&S that has along zoom. Of course, you can have both types, a good SLR for your"serious" work and a small camera (or two) for carrying around..

Http://www.pbase.com/oldhiker.

I disagree with this person. There is NOTHING wrong with the camera body of the Nikon D40 and 40x. Many professionals use these cameras as their backup and some actually prefer the images of these over the more expensive D200..

What the DSLR will get you is the ability to take a picture instantaneously. The kid or the dog is doing something cute... snap, and you've got it. With a P&S it takes a second or two to focus and you'll most likely miss the moment..

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

Comment #15

I stood before this choice 6 or so weeks ago. Buy a P&S or an DSLR? I went and tried them out in the store, asked on the forums and basicly went crazy over what to get..

The thing is tho, you need to see what YOUR needs are, not listen to other people. If you want 1 camera that is easy to use and you don't have the need to upgrade or shoot in low light, then I think a P&S is for you. They are also more compact and have live view(which most entry lvl DSLRs dont).

I felt that a P&S would limit me, in order to upgrade from an P&S I would have to basicly sell everything and start over. If I want to upgrade my DSLR I can buy a new lens, a flash or a polarizer for example. I will offcourse you eventually have to change the body but the accessories will still be usable on that one too which will save me effort and money..

As for the lenses on a DSLR, the kit lenses are not as bad as some ppl make them out to be. And I think they are very capable to produce images very similar and even better than the best P&S cameras. And if you want more zoom(and use Nikon ) you can get a new lens for 200-300USD(55-200VR) with great IQ and image stabilisation. Not sure what Canon and the other brands have to offer for more zoom tho..

My DSLR wa my first proper camera(i had a 150dollar pocket cam) and I have had it for 6 weeks. Couldn't be more happy with it. It takes some learning tho, to understand and use the camera..

Anyway, before this turns into a whole book I think I need to go to sleep, Im by no means an expert. Just a regular guy who was faced with this decision and want's to help(hopefully not confuse) others. Thank you for reading..

Check my Flickr(link below) for images ALL taken with the KIT LENS.

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

Http://www.flickr.com/photos/14807929@N05..

Comment #16

Oldhiker wrote:.

As usual, Wrotniak has a good comment. He predicts the end of theSLR, as EVF cameras improve. Most interesting is his last paragraph;no matter what the camera, the photographer creates the image..

Http://www.wrotniak.net/photo/quest/q09.html.

I don't agree with Wrotniak. I agree that EVFs will get better and better, but a sensor/mirror (or lack of) arrangement with real-time viewing will always be a bit behind the performance of a sensor/mirror system designed only for stills. There will always be a market for a camera with a performance edge..

He also says that IS will lose out to better high-ISO performance. Digital already has better high-ISO performance than film, and IS more common now than ever. IS will always get the photographer 2-3-4 extra stops (handheld) over whatever the lens and sensor performance can give..

I don't put much stock in what he says.Davehttp://pixseal.com..

Comment #17

Dherzstein wrote:.

More common now than ever. IS will always get the photographer 2-3-4extra stops (handheld) over whatever the lens and sensor performancecan give..

Only in terms of camera movement in situations where the photographer is moving. That's important because it's often the case that subject movement is the issue, and stabilization doesn't help with that..

Since a tripod gives more stabilization, so that's where I'd rather shoot from though..

Paulhttp://PaulDRobertson.imagekind.com..

Comment #18

"In a CCD device, the charge is actually transported across the chip and read at one corner of the array. An ANALOG-TO-DIGITAL converter turns each pixel's value into a digital value.".

Http://electronics.howstuffworks.com/question362.htm..

Comment #19

Bulletproof96 wrote:.

"In a CCD device, the charge is actually transported across the chipand read at one corner of the array. An ANALOG-TO-DIGITAL converterturns each pixel's value into a digital value.".

So? That doesn't make a digital P&S any more "digital" than a digital SLR. (For that matter, "digital == better" is a marketing myth. Properly mastered 16-bit, 44.1 KHz CDs sound better than properly mastered LPs in many respects, but it does not follow that every digital representation is superior to every analog representation.).

There's also the little matter that the thing we're measuring (light) has a dual particle and wave nature. The wave form is about as analog as it gets...

Comment #20

Hi,.

I've been thinking extensively about this topic. I don't think you can say an entry level DSLR for 500 is necessarily better than a Bridge camera for the same price. You have to look at the particular cameras and what you want to do with them..

In general entry level DSLRs have the distinct features:.

1. An optical view finder/electronic viewfinder.

2. A larger image sensor/smaller image sensor.

3. Interchangeable lenses/fixed zoom lens..

So what is better?.

1. optical/Electronic view finder.

Well the current optical viewfinders display a very crisp and detailed image. Does this mean that the images you are taking will be better?.

Depends, if you are using autofocus and merely using the viewfinder for composing the image, then you won't have any disadvantages when using the electronic view finder. The image quality is more than sufficient for composing the image..

So, what about manual focus? The optical viewfinder should outperform the electronic viewfiner because the image is more detailed, shouldn't it? Well, modern electronic viewfinders magnifiy the part of the image you are focussing. This magnified field can be moved across the image. This works very well and allows you to focus precisely and fast..

The electronic viewfinder is a lot more versatile. It can show a lot more additional information such as a live histogramm for finding the right exposure settings. In this respect, the electronic viewfiner has an edge..

What's the bottom line? It's more pleasing to look through an optical viewfinder but it's not necessarily better for getting the right picture..

2. Large Image sensor/small image sensor..

Large image sensors usually provide less noise at high ISO settings. However, this has a cost. The image quality of a lense deteriorates towards the edges of the image. Spherical and chromatic abberation as well as vignetting is largest at the edges of the sensor. Therefore, lenses for larger sensors are larger and more expensive than equivalent lenses for small sensors. More lenses are necessary for covering the same focal range..

3. Interchangeable lenses allow you to choose the appropriate lense for the right situation. This is a clear advantage of current DSLRs over bridge cameras. However, the zoom range of current bridge cameras suffices for most situations. Converter lenses for super wide angele, macro and super tele are available for bridge cameras. That's pretty much all you need..

There are two cameras that really entice me. The panasonic FZ50 and the Nikon D40. They are both available at approximately the same price. The FZ50 comes with 35mm - 420 mm (equivalent 35mm camera) F2.8-3.7 Leica zoom lens and optical image stabilization. The nikon D40 has a decent kit lens 27 - 85 mm F3.5-5 without image stabilization..

Well, those are my thoughts. I haven't come to a final conclusion..

Cheers.

Kikl..

Comment #21

With the $500 P&S, you will want to buy an extra battery and a memory card. With a $500 dSLR, you will want to buy an extra battery and a memory card and a few lenses and an external flash and ...  .

Stujoe - Camera Userhttp://www.DigitalPhotoPeople.comhttp://www.flickr.com/photos/stujoe/.

...

Comment #22

I've yet to need a spare battery, the D40 can do 800 photo's easily in 1 charge. The rest is all true tho, lust for equipment is a downside . It's not necessary tho..

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Comment #23

It is not always necessary but that is the path that is often taken..

I bought the $500 D50 kit when they were being discontinued. Wanted telephoto so I bought the 70-300VR. Wanted wide angle so I bought the 10-20mm. Wanted a fast lens so I bought the 50mm f/1.8. Wanted a more useful walk around lens so I bought the 18-135mm to replace the 18-55mm kit lens. Wanted better flash shots so I bought the SB600.



After a year, I think I am now at the point where I have everything I want until I want something else. .

As far as an extra battery...they are not a necessity for most people but it is just something I like to have..

Stujoe - Camera Userhttp://www.DigitalPhotoPeople.comhttp://www.flickr.com/photos/stujoe/.

...

Comment #24

Paul Robertson wrote:.

Only in terms of camera movement in situations where the photographeris moving. That's important because it's often the case that subjectmovement is the issue, and stabilization doesn't help with that..

Since a tripod gives more stabilization, so that's where I'd rathershoot from though..

Paul, what you say is certainly true. But Wrotniak says that IS will become obsolete due to better sensor sensitivity. I say that IS will always give the photographer an "edge" over whatever the sensor can give. (I've been using IS lenses for nearly 10 years now - since I was shooting film).

I also prefer a tripod, but I often hike many miles when photography is not the primary goal, and I leave my tripod in the car. IS helps me a lot..

Davehttp://pixseal.com..

Comment #25

Bulletproof96 wrote:.

"In a CCD device, the charge is actually transported across the chipand read at one corner of the array. An ANALOG-TO-DIGITAL converterturns each pixel's value into a digital value.".

Http://electronics.howstuffworks.com/question362.htm.

So, a P&S with a CCD sensor differs from a DSLR with a CCD sensor in what way? And what about a CMOS sensor - is it more or less "digital" than a CCD?Davehttp://pixseal.com..

Comment #26

Beegle wrote:.

What's the difference between a $500 P/S {G9} and a full DSLR ofabout the same cost ? Is it just a matter of size ? If they both costabout the same , I would imagine their innards ( sensors , ect.} areabout the sameWhat gives ? Steve.

In my opinion a high end P&S and an entry level DSLR will both take excellent photographs in the right hands. The two types of cameras are however meant for different purposes. Compactness is the P&S strength. Functionality, better handling, and the possibility to expand is the SLR strength. Both can exceed your needs if you use the right tool for the job. In other words in good lighting conditions both will make an excellent photograph.

If small, compact, and simple are important, the P&S is usually the better tool..

I suggest considering what types of photo's you think you want to take. Also consider the way you will display your work. Then ask advice and decide which camera is better for you. I use both a P&S and a SLR. In most situations I prefer the SLR because of it's size, weight, and easy access to the controls I use. In some situations only a P&S will do.



Enjoy whatever you decide to purchase...

Comment #27

Dherzstein wrote:.

Bulletproof96 wrote:.

"In a CCD device, the charge is actually transported across the chipand read at one corner of the array. An ANALOG-TO-DIGITAL converterturns each pixel's value into a digital value.".

Http://electronics.howstuffworks.com/question362.htm.

So, a P&S with a CCD sensor differs from a DSLR with a CCD sensor inwhat way? And what about a CMOS sensor - is it more or less"digital" than a CCD?Davehttp://pixseal.com.

Size...

Comment #28



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Comment #29

Yes,you are right, DSLRs have better AF systems than P&S and an optical viewfinder is a distinct advantage in low light situations..

Cheers..

Comment #30

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