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Typical Newbie Question - What camera to get
I have a Canon SD300, but I want to take a photography class for fun. You need an SLR for the class. I wanna learn more and start taking more pictures. I don't think it's necessary to spend an insane amount of money right now. I would like to get a decent camera with a good lens (or maybe 2 lenses). I would rather not spend more than $500ish.

Also it would be cool if the lenses I bought could be used with a better camera if I ever decided to upgrade. I think I'd prefer to get a Canon or Nikon..

Any recommendations? I'm gonna go to Best Buy this weekend to go check them out..

Thanks in advance...

Comments (13)

By all means go to Best Buy and try various cameras, but... you can get a better deal by buying used from a reputable seller (check Adorama, or B&H). Check also some good forums likehttp://www.dgrin.com (they have a for sale board). A Nikon D40 used but in darn good condition can be had for very little nowadays. I sold mine for about $375 (with the kit lens, etc.). If you go that route, you can save a bit more and get a 55-200VR for very little and you will end up with a great camera with awesome quality, and two great lenses that give you in total from 18mm to 200mm..

Have fun!.

NK..

Comment #1

NakaMichi wrote:.

By all means go to Best Buy and try various cameras, but... you canget a better deal by buying used from a reputable seller (checkAdorama, or B&H). Check also some good forums likehttp://www.dgrin.com(they have a for sale board). A Nikon D40 used but in darn goodcondition can be had for very little nowadays. I sold mine for about$375 (with the kit lens, etc.). If you go that route, you can save abit more and get a 55-200VR for very little and you will end up witha great camera with awesome quality, and two great lenses that giveyou in total from 18mm to 200mm..

Have fun!.

NK.

I'll second that. A D40 with kit lens is a great choice. Under $500 new. You do get the warranty new (1 yr body, 5yr lens) as long as it's not grey market..

Hey NakaMichi, I used to drool over their tape decks, and had an LX-3. Their decks were so cool it was a shame to see tape go by the wayside...

Comment #2

NakaMichi wrote:.

By all means go to Best Buy and try various cameras, but... you canget a better deal by buying used from a reputable seller (checkAdorama, or B&H). Check also some good forums likehttp://www.dgrin.com(they have a for sale board). A Nikon D40 used but in darn goodcondition can be had for very little nowadays. I sold mine for about$375 (with the kit lens, etc.). If you go that route, you can save abit more and get a 55-200VR for very little and you will end up witha great camera with awesome quality, and two great lenses that giveyou in total from 18mm to 200mm..

Have fun!.

NK.

Oh I just meant to touch, hold, etc. I would never buy from there..

Someone is asking $575 for this. Is it a good deal? I'm sure it's negotiable.

Nikon D401gig Memory CardBatteryChargerUSB CableWireless remote shutter18-55 Nikon Kit Lens55-200 VR f3.5 Nikon Lens50mm 1.8f Nikon AI-S LensSmall Camera Bag..

Comment #3

Take a look at the K100D from Pentax I know my store is selling it for 499.99 and Pentax has a 100.00 mail in rebate til Jan 31...it's a great little camera too and you can get it new...it's hard to get a DSLR under 500 right now otherwise buying a D40 used like the other poster suggested is a good idea too...Im not a huge fan of the D40 personally but I also realize that it is a GREAT beginner dSLR (and have no problem selling it either)..

Comment #4

CrazyCarrie06 wrote:.

Take a look at the K100D from Pentax I know my store is selling itfor 499.99 and Pentax has a 100.00 mail in rebate til Jan 31...it's agreat little camera too and you can get it new...it's hard to get aDSLR under 500 right now otherwise buying a D40 used like theother poster suggested is a good idea too...Im not a huge fan of theD40 personally but I also realize that it is a GREAT beginner dSLR(and have no problem selling it either).

Well I want to get a Nikon or Canon so I could buy lenses that will work with better cameras if I ever move up..

The D40 is around $450 brand new with the kit lens. It might be even cheaper somewhere. I haven't looked much...

Comment #5

Stick with a canon because the controls on nikons are reversed compared to the canons and try a rebal 2k or a rebal xt. they are both good starter slrs and offer all that you need for basic photography classes. once you get to advance classes try a canon 30D for digital or film slr of equal quality. you really only need about 8 mega pixals for a good camera unless you start using medium format...

Comment #6

I had a Nikon D40 for about 10 months, great camera to learn from. The LCD explains a lot of things. I recently sold my D40 for $450USD for financial reasons. You should be able to get one used for about 380 - 500 with accessories..

From my experience, I think a Nikon D1H is the way to go. ABout a month after a sold my D40, I got a used Nikon D1H body for $320 plus 3 batteries, a "kit lens" and other accessories for a total of around $380. ( recieved some extra money/financial cap) IQ is quite the same as D40, but it's so much faster, AF is faster, 2.7 megapixel is NOT a bad thing, hardly even noticable for small prints, and feels so much better..

My suggestion: A D40 is a GREAT camera. but look into the "older cameras" that might give more bang for their buck. I certainly miss my D40, but I dont regret buying a D1H!.

Hope this helps!..

Comment #7

If you go with the Rebels just get the body...the kit lens is awful. Get a 18-55 IS for about $170.00 makes a world of difference. Canon just announced the Rebel XSi (or 450) so you may get some great deals on the 350D or 400DGood luck..

Comment #8

At Amazon.com, you can get the Canon 350D for $400 and the well-regarded 18-55IS lens for $185. This would be an excellent starter kit..

Jerryhttp://jchoate.zenfolio.com/..

Comment #9

The dirty little secret is that the bottom rung D40/xti's are better than the top DSLRs 8 years ago, at 1/10th (or less) the price...

Comment #10

Kujo9907 wrote:.

Stick with a canon because the controls on nikons are reversedcompared to the canons and try a rebal 2k or a rebal xt. they areboth good starter slrs and offer all that you need for basicphotography classes. once you get to advance classes try a canon 30Dfor digital or film slr of equal quality. you really only need about8 mega pixals for a good camera unless you start using medium format..

So you guys think a Rebel over a Canon 20D? (if I found that one used)..

Comment #11

Rebel or 20D, makes little difference. They are great cameras..

Jerryhttp://jchoate.zenfolio.com/..

Comment #12

Jchoate wrote:.

Rebel or 20D, makes little difference. They are great cameras..

I somewhat disagree and somewhat agree with the above statement. The handling of a Rebel vs a 20D is very different. First, there is a significant size difference, the Rebel is significantly smaller than the 20D body, for me, the Rebel was too small and too light, the 20D was a beefier camera for sure. Second, speed, the 20D seems to do everything a little bit faster. Thirdly, if you think there may be a chance of upgrading above the Rebel line in the future, the controls are significantly different. The 20D, 30D and 40D all have similar control layouts for adjusting shutter speed, aperature etc.



If I recall correctly, Rebels below the 400D/XTi have 3 autofocus points (just like the Nikon D40/D40x where as the XTi (and 20D) has 9. This isn't huge but for off centre framing, the 9 AF points make a difference..

If you want a smaller body, I would go for the XTi, if you feel that the larger cameras are more comfortable, go for the 20D. I sold my 20D to a friend for about $400 a few months back. Normally I don't like to do business with friends but the 20D was such a great camera, I had no worries of her coming back to me with complaints. I say go to a store and pick up a Rebel and see how it feels, then pick up a 30D or 40D (very similar in size and weight to a 20D) and see how that feels. If the XXD feels like too much, go for the Rebel..

I am also going to disagree with an earlier poster that the non-IS 18-55 is "awful". It isn't that bad, it is a basic lense. It can produce some really nice pictures. That said, given the choice of the 18-55 non-IS vs the 18-55 IS, reports indicate that the IS model does have better optics and is the better choice..

But hey, these are just my opinions...

Comment #13

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