Your opinion

I know the "what should I buy" question has been asked like a gajillion times already so I won't do that. Instead I wanted your opinions. I have pretty much decided that since I am new to photography (having spent most of my life with crappy point and shoots) that I'd settle for an entry level DSLR so I could have more control over my shots. Going overboard and spending lots of cash on a camera that can do a zillion things that I have no idea can be done was inicially my idea, but then I thought it sensible to start small and build up some photographic skill over time, and later in the game invest some more if needed..

So I finally settled on 2 possible cameras, the Olympus E-420 due to it's Live Preview which some people defend is a good thing because it can help me see the results of my choices in real time even before I take the shot, or the Canon Rebel Xsi that has been said to be the best entry level DSLR. Now, my dilema is wich of the 2? They both lack IS and I am very afraid that will produce blured images since I do not have a very steady hand. Some people have told me that this larger more heavy camera will help steady my hand as opposed to the point and shoots. Dunno if that's true or not. The Live View of the Oly is a plus, but the fact that the Canon is highly recommended speaks in it's favor. Indoor and night time shots might become a problem because of the lack of IS, particularly in very low light situations where shutter speeds will be lower..

I have spent days (literally) putting off making a decision becuase of this. I actually stumbled onto this site because of all the reasearch I have been putting into these 2 cameras and still cannot decide..

So please help me out guys. What say you, the children of the web. Should I pick one or the other, or should I really look for a camera with IS? It's killing me..Nuno Marques..

Comments (15)

The XSi often comes with a 'kit' lens that has IS built in, so check that out..

IS is nice to have, but one of the advantages of SLRs is that they let you use high ISOs without too much grain, so you can use a faster shutter speed. Using a faster shutter speed is often all you need to do to get sharp shots..

IS won't always help in night shots by the way. Once your shutter speed drops below about 1/10 of a second, even IS won't help much. Good performance at high ISO is more important, escecially if you're taking photos of things that move..

They both have live preview, the Canon's on a bigger 3 inch LCD I think..

The Canon hasn't been reviewed much yet, but it's pretty safe to say that in the right hands, it will be a bit better than the Olympus in terms of photo quality..

But there's nothing much wrong with either, and the Olympus is nice and small..


Comment #1

Thanks for the fast reply. I'll take that into consideration. Meanwhile I was editing my original post because I had left out the part about my unsteady hands and thet some people say that larger heavier cameras also help to reduce shake. Do you think I should put any stock in those words or is it just a myth?.Nuno Marques..

Comment #2

For the same price as the XSi, take a look at the 14 megapixel Sony A350, which has in-body image stabilizer..

It has the best live view at the moment and will auto focus with live view on, which the XSi and the E-420 won't do..

J. D.Colorful Colorado.

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Remember.always keep your receipt, the box, and everything that came in it!..

Comment #3

Thanks for the input. I had seen the A350 but discarded it for 2 reasons, price was higher and my last point and shoot was Sony and I found it quite crappy. Probably mostly because of this second reason to be honest. But if you say they cost about the same, maybe I should give it a second glance. Apart the IS, would you say it's comparable to the Xsi overall or worse?.Nuno Marques..

Comment #4

You can get image stabilization in Canon lenses, so that is not directly a problem. IS is nice under certain circumstances, but it is not always applicable. If your subject is moving or under low enough light conditions that hand-holding still won't work. The latter is usually solved by a tripod, and turning off the IS..

Larger, heavier cameras simply have more mass (inertia) to resist small movements of your hand - in short, they are steadier, but good technique will solve a lot of problems short of some form a physical shake that you have (nerve twitch, palsy, etc.). A larger bulky camera vs. a smaller lighter camera is mostly a matter of preference - you need to hold both and see which one you are comfortable with..

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Comment #5

I must say I never expected anyone to reply to my post, let alone 3 ppl in less than 4 hours..

Your input was great, thanks. I'll also take that into consideration. The mass issue makes sense now that you have put it in perspective. There is one thing that I didn't understand: why turn IS of, when mounted on a tripod? I get that the tripod is stable, but is it necessary to turn off the IS? Also, the fact that IS is built into the lens makes for a more expensive lens, right? This should probably also affect my decision. I have to think carefully or I might end up with an expensive kit. But it's always good to get some fresh opinions..

I am currently comparing the Xsi and the A350 again..Nuno Marques..

Comment #6


I'm in similar dilemma, but wanted to ask: Did you consider any of the Pentax cameras & why they didn't make the short list???.

I'm trying to justify or discredit my current choice..


PS: The stabilization in the lenses is adding about 30-40% to the cost of the lens, depending on the size/brand/ ’ speed. Food for thought, my recent observations.'OOOOOH, they have the Internet on computers now!' Homer J. Simpson..

Comment #7


Did consider Pentax K110D, not sure if that's the one you are considering, but the fact that it's 6MP put me off quite a bit. Now to be honest, I didn't even think of the 200D because I didn't notice it somehow till yesterday, right here on the forums. I started digging and after a while I'll admit it is now one of the 3 I am considering, the other 2 being the Sony A350 and the Xsi Reble from Canon. The Pentax has one thing that for me is as much a turn on, as it is a turn off. The fact that it uses AA bateries means that in a pinch, I could just go into any local shop and buy myself extra juice. But it also means less capacity = less shooting time = in a pinch more often..

Besides that, it looks pretty good. The Alpha 350 is supposed to be much better than both the Xsi and the K200D but I saw some samples posted on smugmug and I was not impressed with the amount of noise at 800 ISO let alone 1600 and 3200. But being new to this, I might be dead wrong..

All in all, right now I'd say the Xsi has my vote for "next up". But I am still waiting to hear from more ppl before I make a decision. If I cannot get more feedback to support my findings, I'll wait a bit more. Don't want to rush this buy..

Could you let me know what made you consider Pentax in the first place? I'd love to know..Nuno Marques..

Comment #8

You can get IS lenses for the e420 as well, they are produced by leica and will cost a bit, comparable to the canikon IS lenses I imagine but have not checked..

And while it is all well and good to compare ISO 3200 shots, you really have to ask yourself if you will be shooting those silly high ISO's that often as IQ will suffer regardless of who's camera you have in hand...

Comment #9

Sorry for my lack of experience, but I always thought that higher ISO speeds meant less shake and less blur..Nuno Marques..

Comment #10

A Olympus tem muitas vantagens, a meu ver o sistema 4/3 muito bom..

E as lentes Zuiko so excelentes, mesmo as lentes de kit da Olympus so superiores s das outras marcas..

Http:// is the tangential point between zero and infinity.


Comment #11

It does, at the expense of noise as I expect you have seen..

Canon is a better high ISO cameraOly has the size factor going for it for you with better lenses IMO..

It really comes down to what you shoot and as I said if you'll really need clean high ISO shooting past 800 because you use high ISO a lot as the further you get from native ISO regardless of the camera you will be giving up IQ to some degree...

Comment #12


Obrigado pelas dicas. Estou perdido com tanta coisa. Sou mesmo novato inexperiente. J agora; s Tuga ou Brasileiro?.


Yeah, I know that higher ISO usually implies more noise. The Oly jumps from 800 to 1600 ISO. The Alpha 350 on the other hand goes up to 3200. Although I agree that I will probably very seldom go over the 800 mark as you pointed out, I wonder if I will ever reach a point where I start wishing I had 1600+ ISO. Is there any way to compensate for the lack of higher ISO speeds?-Nuno Marques..

Comment #13

Nuno Marques wrote:.

Is there any way tocompensate for the lack of higher ISO speeds?-Nuno Marques.

Sure there is, faster lenses...and or a flash with a diffuser. I've been shooting family stuff indoors for the last 2.5 years and don't hesitate to bring out the fl-50 which was the 1st accessory I bought. it adds a AF assist and gives me all the light I need to shoot no faster than ISO 400. properly diffused and exposed and I've made some great shots with it. fl50 on a e420 though makes a tough sell as the size is what people are after. what it solves though is avoiding high ISO if it's infrequently needed..

By the time you learn to feel limited by higher ISO speeds it will be time for a new body anyway as they are the PC's of the camera world at this point, largely built with a pre determined obsolescence to keep you coming back if you buy into the constant upgrade chasing..

Build/select a system based on the lens collection that reflects your needs and keep a body attached to it that is the most current one you can afford. good glass never stops being good glass, bodies will always be coming out with the next ISO 1.25million setting enticing you for the would have/could have do I need it..

Again all of this is moot if you have a day in/out need for high ISO shooting than the canon is the better pick. other than that the I'd go Oly/Leica glass every day of the week IMO, other's will vary obviously. the new 25mm pancake is going to add to the range and be a big fan favorite it seems keeping the e420 P&S size but with far greater abilities. the kit lenses are great and quite capable given their size and price point just a touch slow for the exact same reasons, they are kit lenses..

I've been shooting family stuff indoors for the last 2.5 years and don't hesitate to bringou tht e..

Comment #14

I shot with a ME Super (my Dad's) in school (college). We had some lenses still & Dad picked up the K10D. That camera has a decent price right now $700s, so not really any more expensive than the new K200D..

The cost of the lenses seems to be cheaper over the ones for Canon with the IS... but the selection is narrower for Pentax. But, still much larger than the Sony / Olympus combined IMO.'OOOOOH, they have the Internet on computers now!' Homer J. Simpson..

Comment #15

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