Originally Posted by panik343
Hi, I'm currently using a Canon Powershot S3 IS. Im very pleased with it, but looking at some of the pictures on the photography threads I'm realizing the fine line between "advanced point and shoot" and DSLR. Does anyone have any good suggestions? From what I was able to gather from other threads around here the Canon and Nikkon are generally good brands. I appreciate your help.
If you just want to try the DSLR, I would suggest a used Digital Rebel and load the "Russian" firmware to mimic the capability of the 10D. You can save the rest of the dough for the lenses.
If you're on budget constrain, you can start with a standard 28mm, which is about 50mm equivalent to full-frame. This lens is a very good learning tool which you can use to grasp the importance of framing and perspective. The 50mm/1.8 is another good low cost addition for low light situation.
If you are ready to spend, I would suggest the following:
Canon 30D - The entry level of professional, and lenses:
1. 50mm/1.4 USM - Good brokeh and about 80mm in full-frame equivalence. Excellent for close range portraits.
2. 17-40mm/4.0 L - Good all-around lens.
3. 70-200mm/4.0 L - Good all-around tele. excellent for long range portraits.
Since you're not making a living with photography, I would not mention anything in the professional class.