Might be purchasing a DSLR. Input goes here:
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    Registered User DTR rex's Avatar
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    Might be purchasing a DSLR. Input goes here:

    Taking some photo classes right now for fun. I'm kind of getting into it and figure it might not be a bad idea to pick up an entry-level DLSR to play with. I absolutely LOVE my Panasonic DCM point and shoot with the leica lense. Takes better pics than digi-cams twice its price. Can't express how utterly happy I am with this as a point and shoot.

    I'm currently looking at 3 options.

    1) Canon EOS Rebel XS (formerly XTi. Basically exactly the same)
    - Seems to be a solid camera from everything I can tell. I also hear the Rebel series is one of the best beginner cameras out there.

    2) Nikon D3000
    - Specs are nearly identical to the Rebel XS. My cousin recent picked one up and I played with it for a good hour or so last weekend. Pretty user friendly, but I wasn't crazy about all the buttons you have to navigate through just to change the white balancing. It was odd. The camera is known for being simple, but I found it overly and unnecessarily complicating to manually adjust features. Feels great though and price is awesome.

    3) Panasonic DCM G10
    - I guess this is pretty new. CNET does not even have a review for it yet. However, my point and shoot is a Panasonic DCM and as expressed above, I love it. If this DSLR operates like my point and shoot but on a DSLR level, I would be ecstatic. It also has 2 megapixels more than the other two options, has a larger screen (by .5") and a better quality video recorder. It also comes with a Leica-Vario lense, which is supposed to be really good.
    Naturally this sounds like the best bet, but I guess Panasonic does not have tons of experience with DSLR's whereas the other two lead the pack. I'm kinda wary about this.

    All cameras are around $500.

    I'm leaning towards the Panasonic because of how happy I've been with my point and shoot, but the lack of reviews and info on it do not sit well.

    Any input/help/experience would be appreciated. Thanks.
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    He simply abides. SD_GR's Avatar
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    The Panasonic is not a DLSR; there is no mirror. There is also no conventional viewfinder. I'd have bought it in a heartbeat if it were just a bit smaller -- with no mirror and viewfinder a u4/3 body should and could be smaller IMO. That's what I'm waiting for, and if it happens I'm done with DSLR stuff I think.

    Consider what you will be doing with the camera. Are you shooting scenery, people, or sports? If you like sports, especially indoor sports, you need something with a high frame rate plus great high ISO performance, and you need a fa$t len$ (the kit lens may let you down in this respect).

    Megapixels are not meaningful. The user interface is very important, as are size, and lenses. Consider the body expendable, as it will be obsolete before you know it. The lenses and the system is what you should buy into.

    The G10 is the newest and will remain current longer I'd suspect. The Nikon is I think due for revision and you might be able to get a screaming deal on a refurb factory kit (check Adorama or B&H but not on the Sabbath).

    Of those three I like the Nikon lenses the most, the Canon body ergonomics the most, and the Panasonic as a concept and what is IMO the way forward. Tough choice. If you don't like something or it's too awkward or too big it'll stay home though, so get what you really feel comfortable with.

    Check out dpreview for reviews; they just looked at the G2 Panny and have reviewed the other two also.

    http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/canoneos1000d/
    http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/nikond3000
    and here's their G2 story; the G10 hasn't been reviewed yet but look at the G2 and G1 articles and see what you can read between the lines:
    http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/PanasonicDMCG2/
    Last edited by SD_GR; 07-28-2010 at 11:00 PM.
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    Go with Canon EOS all the way buddy... you wont regret it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by SD_GR View Post
    The Panasonic is not a DLSR; there is no mirror. There is also no conventional viewfinder. I'd have bought it in a heartbeat if it were just a bit smaller -- with no mirror and viewfinder a u4/3 body should and could be smaller IMO. That's what I'm waiting for, and if it happens I'm done with DSLR stuff I think.

    Consider what you will be doing with the camera. Are you shooting scenery, people, or sports? If you like sports, especially indoor sports, you need something with a high frame rate plus great high ISO performance, and you need a fa$t len$ (the kit lens may let you down in this respect).

    Megapixels are not meaningful. The user interface is very important, as are size, and lenses. Consider the body expendable, as it will be obsolete before you know it. The lenses and the system is what you should buy into.

    The G10 is the newest and will remain current longer I'd suspect. The Nikon is I think due for revision and you might be able to get a screaming deal on a refurb factory kit (check Adorama or B&H but not on the Sabbath).

    Of those three I like the Nikon lenses the most, the Canon body ergonomics the most, and the Panasonic as a concept and what is IMO the way forward. Tough choice. If you don't like something or it's too awkward or too big it'll stay home though, so get what you really feel comfortable with.

    Check out dpreview for reviews; they just looked at the G2 Panny and have reviewed the other two also.

    http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/canoneos1000d/
    http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/nikond3000
    and here's their G2 story; the G10 hasn't been reviewed yet but look at the G2 and G1 articles and see what you can read between the lines:
    http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/PanasonicDMCG2/
    This is all completely true, including what you said about a D3000 replacement. This is the current news on the upcoming Nikon D3100:

    http://nikonrumors.com/2010/07/27/de...ouncement.aspx

    http://nikonrumors.com/2010/07/15/me...kon-d3100.aspx

    When it all comes down to it, buy the DSLR that makes the most sense to you ergonomically. I personally prefer Nikon's overall ergonomics over Canon's, but I started with a D70 which was physically larger than any of the current entry level DSLRs out there. I have longer fingers (thanks in part to decades of piano-playing), so the smaller size of the Canons without a vertical grip actually make my hands cramp up. That's just me though...I don't think you can go wrong either way in the case, except when lumping the Panasonic in here.
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    Registered User DTR rex's Avatar
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    Here is the Panasonic I was talking about:

    http://www.costco.com/Browse/Product...S&Sp=C&topnav=

    So this isn't a DSLR?

    Would you guys mind explaining why it isn't, and also, what it is then.

    Lastly, does Panasonic make a good sub-$600 DSLR?

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    Quote Originally Posted by DTR maxima View Post
    Here is the Panasonic I was talking about:

    http://www.costco.com/Browse/Product...S&Sp=C&topnav=

    So this isn't a DSLR?

    Would you guys mind explaining why it isn't, and also, what it is then.

    Lastly, does Panasonic make a good sub-$600 DSLR?

    Thanks for bearing with me.
    This is a micro four-thirds camera:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Micro_Four_Thirds_system

    While you can change lenses and stuff, it's not the same as a DSLR because there's no mirror or pentaprism. That's the quick and dirty reason. Even though you're going to be able to change lenses with this, lens selection is going to be the biggest weak point of this camera, both in terms of quantity of lens options and the quality of the lenses themselves.

    To my knowledge, Panasonic does not make a true DSLR camera Instead of trying to compete in the DSLR realm, they (and Olympus) are going with the micro four-thirds format instead.
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    Olympus makes conventional true DSLRs in 4/3 for all market segments from entry to pro, as well as mirrorless cameras in u4/3. Panasonic did make at least one DSLR I have seen, the DMC-L1, during the time they and Oly worked out 4/3 -- I think the mirror box was Oly-sourced at the time.

    I like the idea of u4/3 and I like the idea of large sensor, mirrorless, interchangeable lens cameras. I'd like to see more lenses though, and in any case once you start mounting a 200+ mm on any body, you lose the benefit of small size. I think the u4/3 stuff will shine with good pancakes, and there are already a couple nice u4/3 mount sub 30 mm lenses out there that are absolutely tiny.
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    I guess I'm the guy who likes the long shot out there. If you equate cameras to car makers, The Canon is like GM, the Nikon is like Toyota, and the Panasonic is like Mitsubishi.

    Personally I went through this entire purchasing process about 3 years ago and settled on the Subaru of the group.

    http://www.sonystyle.com/webapp/wcs/...9&N=4294966273

    I have a Sony Alpha A100. I like the usability of the Alpha series, it feels very nice, has great ergonomics, usable interface, and an excellent lens selection. I like the "in body AF and IS" which comes in the Nikon and canon lenses which makes their lenses cost a lot more. For a hobbyist like me, it is a perfect choice. For a published professional like Armin. probably not. He often rents super mega telephotos for different events and the Nikons are more readily available, although the Sony Alpha Line can use the old Konica Minolta lenses. (I bought several off craigslist for cheap!)

    Plus for an initial investment you can get a 2 lens kit with more features that will out shoot the Nikon all day for the same money. IMO entry to mid level they can't be beat, best value.

    But people are pretty brand loyal at this site so take it with a grain .

    Whatever you get, get HD video capability.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 06wrx4me View Post
    For a published professional like Armin. probably not. He often rents super mega telephotos for different events
    I actually have never rented a super mega telephoto lens All I've ever rented has been strobe lighting for model photography, and I haven't rented anything in about 4 years now.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Verdugo View Post
    I actually have never rented a super mega telephoto lens All I've ever rented has been strobe lighting for model photography, and I haven't rented anything in about 4 years now.
    I stand corrected. I seem to remember a conversation on here a few years back with Coolbeans and you about the need to rent lenses to try out. Maybe Coolbeans often rented the Super Mega telephotos...idk.
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    Jeremy, for yer camera to car company comparison comment i was gonna throw u in timeout
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    Quote Originally Posted by Weasel 555 View Post
    Jeremy, for yer camera to car company comparison comment i was gonna throw u in timeout
    settled on the Subaru of the group
    Fixed !!!
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    Looking over the Sony options you listed the one that best fits what I want seems to be the a330.

    The a330 actually has better CNET reviews than the Cannon and Nikon. Canon and Nikon each had 3.5 stars. The Sony had 4.5, which is pretty impressive.

    Anyone else had experience with the camera. My ex had a high end Sony point and shoot that lasted YEARS and took tons of abuse and had solid picture quality.

    Armin, how do you feel about the Sony compared to the Nikon/Canon?

    I realize I need to play with each one, but I am trying scope out reviews first to get a better idea.

    Only one I've really played with is the D3000 which I liked how it felt, but didn't like the way the menu functions worked.
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    Quote Originally Posted by DTR maxima View Post
    Armin, how do you feel about the Sony compared to the Nikon/Canon?
    Sony DSLRs overall rate decently, but in the end the problem is going to be lens selection. Let's say you outgrow this camera...where do you move from here? What happens to the lenses you currently own...will they be able to be used on a higher model? Are there the right type of lenses available for your camera system? One thing that's always bugged me about Nikon is their lack of wide angle, wide aperture lenses like Canon's 24mm 1.4. Nikon's starting to come out with them now, but I still have to upgrade to a full-frame body to really take advantage of them.

    As far as CNET goes, I'm not a huge fan of their reviews overall, but I'm even more not a fan of their camera reviews, for the simple fact that cameras (IMHO) shouldn't be lumped together as "consumer electronics" with TVs and such. This is a better, more technical and well-written review as far as I'm concerned:

    http://www.photographyblog.com/revie...y_a330_review/
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    Registered User DTR rex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Verdugo View Post
    Sony DSLRs overall rate decently, but in the end the problem is going to be lens selection. Let's say you outgrow this camera...where do you move from here? What happens to the lenses you currently own...will they be able to be used on a higher model? Are there the right type of lenses available for your camera system? One thing that's always bugged me about Nikon is their lack of wide angle, wide aperture lenses like Canon's 24mm 1.4. Nikon's starting to come out with them now, but I still have to upgrade to a full-frame body to really take advantage of them.

    As far as CNET goes, I'm not a huge fan of their reviews overall, but I'm even more not a fan of their camera reviews, for the simple fact that cameras (IMHO) shouldn't be lumped together as "consumer electronics" with TVs and such. This is a better, more technical and well-written review as far as I'm concerned:

    http://www.photographyblog.com/revie...y_a330_review/
    I see what you're saying.

    I checked that blog and it gave the Nikon D3000 a pretty good review. In fact, they even deemed "highly recommended".

    But I couldn't for the life of me find a review for the Canon Rebel XS.

    Either way, it seems those two are my choices. I guess I'll just have to play around with them.

    I spent a couple hours with a D3000 so maybe I should play with a Rebel XS as well.
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