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DSLR questions - Page 2

post #16 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by grawk View Post
Why wouldn't they work on a cropped frame?
I don't know how the camera's are constructed specifically, and this argument depends on the geometry of the camera. I'd imagine that a full frame lens on a cropped sensor would result in lens projecting an image that's too large for the sensor. I suppose it's not a problem per se, in so much as the lens is wasted.

I think I've pretty much made up my mind though to wait and buy a D700 when I've got the cash for it. I'd rather get a full frame sensor and then buy glass for a full frame sensor, rather than buying a DX sensor and appropriate glass for it.
post #17 of 30
Full frame lenses all work on cropped frames, it's the opposite that doesn't work, because the image doesn't fill the frame. You benefit from the cropping, because it's the edges of the frame where flaws show up most commonly, but you lose some width.
post #18 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by grawk View Post
Full frame lenses all work on cropped frames, it's the opposite that doesn't work, because the image doesn't fill the frame. You benefit from the cropping, because it's the edges of the frame where flaws show up most commonly, but you lose some width.
Yes, I understand that. I guess I've just made up my mind that I don't want a cropped sensor. I don't really want to give up on wide angle shots. I may still consider getting a cheap D40 and a good quality fixed zoom 35 mm or 50 mm full frame lens. That'd probably cost similar to getting a decent EVIL camera, but I'd be building up glass I could use with a better camera later on.
post #19 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Clutz View Post
Yes, I understand that. I guess I've just made up my mind that I don't want a cropped sensor. I don't really want to give up on wide angle shots. I may still consider getting a cheap D40 and a good quality fixed zoom 35 mm or 50 mm full frame lens. That'd probably cost similar to getting a decent EVIL camera, but I'd be building up glass I could use with a better camera later on.
You can still do WA on DX, the 12-24 and my old workhorse the Sigma 10-20 handle wide shots very well. The reason why I went to FX is because I do a fair amount of shooting at night or in dark settings (such as halls or clubs) and I don't always have the benefit of flash. Full-Frame excels in these environments. You can check out MTF charts on lenses if you're wondering about a lens's capability on edges, resolution, etc. However I'd say don't tread too far down that path or you may find yourself taking pictures of brick walls instead of something more interesting.

I carry around my D3 with my 50 or 105 for most of my shooting.
post #20 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by grawk View Post
The problem with doing full frame on a budget is the cost of the glass. Less expensive lenses get progressively worse as you go from the center to the edge of the frame. So even tho you've got that additional data, the image quality there is lacking, so will probably end up getting cropped out anyway. And since the 1.5-1.7 crop factor cameras have been the norm for many years now, there are quite a few good semi-pro options at the wide end of things designed for these cameras. I'd get the camera you can afford in the brand you prefer, and then later buy yourself a full frame camera and great glass when you're ready to spend the serious money.
Very good advice. I actually have been able to salvage a couple of old lenses that were beginning to shown signs of mold around outer areas of glass but the center area was still useable on my DSLR. What made me choose my brand (Nikon) was already having a selection of old Nikon lglass that would fit the DSLR body. Some of them are so old that I am forced to go manual mode but it's good sometimes to refresh your skills.
post #21 of 30
I made the transition from FF 35mm to a D200 not too terribly long ago and here is what I learned.

1) Modern lenses wipe the floor with older 35mm lenses. I expected to use lenses from my old kit, but the features and spectacular image quality of even the cheapest kit lenses convinced me to start all over again with new lenses.

2) The only thing that really matters on a new Nikon body is if you need to use screwdriver drive autofocus lenses or not. The D40 and the D300 are not really all that far apart in image quality. For normal size printing, the megapixels just don't matter. Low light capability is WAY overemphasized in forums. Any DSLR can shoot in darkness that would require a tripod and super long exposure with a 35. The only thing that convinced me to get the D200 over a D40 was the ability to use more third party lenses.

3) Third party lenses are usually as good, and sometimes better than the Nikon equivalents. When I was shooting 35, there was a world of difference between a brand name and a third party lens. No longer.

4) Money is better spent on a carefully chosen group of good lenses than on a top of the line camera body. Bodies are obsolete in six months, but lenses are good forever. Whatever camera body you buy, you will probably be replacing it in three or four years.

5) The advantage of FF over crop for an advanced amateur is miniscule. Unless you plan to spend many thousands of dollars on pro lenses, a DX camera will serve you much better. Don't buy into upgradeitis. Look for what you need, don't buy more than you need for no reason.

6) Internet forums are full of anal retentive people who worry about charts and shoot pictures of brick walls by candlelight. You can be sure that most criticism you read of equipment on the internet is greatly exaggerated.

7) A DSLR does not replace a P&S. The best camera is the one you have with you at the time. Pictures happen all the time, and you can't carry a big DSLR with you wherever you go. Invest in a really good pocketable P&S too.

8) Cameras don't make good pictures, people do. There is probably nothing wrong with your current Canon P&S. Canon makes excellent pocket cameras capable of taking incredible pictures. If your shots are blurry and lack contrast, it's because you are using it wrong- trying to make it do things it wasn't designed to do. You need to learn the capabilities of your equipment and how to squeeze good shots out of them.

9) THIS IS THE BIG ONE- Don't sacrifice lens usability now for some application on a different camera in the future. Midrange focal lengths on FF totally don't have any purpose on crop. Who needs a zoom that goes from wide angle to almost the middle? The only lenses that can make the transition from DX to FF are the ones at the ends of the range. Get lenses you can use and get your money's worth out of NOW.

That's all I can think of right now. Hope it helps.
post #22 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Clutz View Post
I don't really want to give up on wide angle shots.
There are a ton of great ultrawides for DX. You don't give up any focal length range with a crop sensor.

I realized that I didn't make a recommendation above. Here is what I would suggest to get...

D40
Nikon 18-55 VR kit lens (or Tamron 17-50 2.8 with motor)
Nikon 55-200 VR kit lens
Nikon 35mm 1.8
Nikon SB 600 Flash
A decent tripod

That kit will do most anything, and it's as sharp and as fast as you will ever need.

An alternative kit for screw drive lenses...

D90
Nikon 18-200 VRII
Sigma 30 1.4
Tokina 11-16 2.8

Don't throw your money away on features that only matter to specialists and technicians. Get the camera that fits you- a camera for people who want to shoot family and vacation pictures.
post #23 of 30
A lot of people get hung up on focal length and focal length conversions, for shooting wide, nobody ever touches on angle of view, which is what makes a wide shot really wide or not. I just sold my 5d for a 7d, the crop sensor, isn't bad, the 1k extra to move to a mkll wasn't justifiable for me. The full frame is nice, but before that I had a 10d and was using a Sigma 12-24mm aspherical lens sure it wasn't 10-20mm, but it had a 120degree field of view with not too bad distortion, it didn't have the fisheye effect. So it was "wider" than the shorter focal lengths which are around 90-100 degrees. I would weigh more on good available glass.

Full frame glass tends to work better on cropped sensors, you use the best part of the glass, all your distortion tends to happen around the edges of the glass where it begins to convex, so you get to use the sweet spot on the lens.

Are you also considering a DSLR that also shoots video? I just shot my first video of mine of a local bagpipe group and an awards ceremony, (youtube link upon request) it turned out pretty decent, I'm not sure if youtube does it justice, but something to consider. The video options on some of the cropped sensors trump the full frame.

I'm rambling. My bad.
post #24 of 30
My advice to you is to first figure out what types of photography you will be shooting. Portraits? Landscapes? Indoor sports/performances? Outdoor sports and action? Wildlife? Macro? etc. Then, read up on all the lenses that would be best suited to what you want to do. Remember, when you are buying an SLR, what's really happening is that you are buying into a lens system.

Now I don't know much about Nikon, as I am a Canon guy. Let's say you want to do action photography. I would then recommend you the 7D or 1D mark III (1D mark IV if you have really deep pockets). Portraits and landscape? A used 5D, or a 5D mark II. You have to read up on all the features of the cameras, and decide on what features will matter the most to you. But the first point of business is to decide what type of photography you will be doing the most, then choose a camera for that. FF has its advantages and disadvantages too, you know...so do crop bodies. Don't totally discount the crop bodies (7D and 1D mark III, for example).

Of course we want to do everything, which is why we Canon users like to own multiple bodies for different purposes....

Choose Canon vs. Nikon (or w/e other brand) based on the lens system.
post #25 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by grawk View Post
The problem with doing full frame on a budget is the cost of the glass. Less expensive lenses get progressively worse as you go from the center to the edge of the frame. So even tho you've got that additional data, the image quality there is lacking, so will probably end up getting cropped out anyway. And since the 1.5-1.7 crop factor cameras have been the norm for many years now, there are quite a few good semi-pro options at the wide end of things designed for these cameras. I'd get the camera you can afford in the brand you prefer, and then later buy yourself a full frame camera and great glass when you're ready to spend the serious money.
This is an excellent point! If you are not shooting professionally, there is little reason to go full frame. Cropped sensors, like the APS-C, are pretty strong. Buying into the cropped sensor allows you to spend more $ on a variety of good lenses instead of having to spend big money on glass that extends resolution to the corners of a full frame sensor. The one exception...I didn't notice mention of the type of photography you shoot...if you do a lot of landscape and wide-angle photography, then it may be worthwhile to go full frame, because the crop factor will make it both expensive and severely limiting in lens choice, to get wide angle perspectives anyway.

Also, I'll recommend the Pentax SLR's. For approx. half the cost of a Nikon or Canon offering, you can get a very nice weather-sealed body and some of the best prime lenses on the market. You give up a little speed in autofocus, but image quality is on par...and I enjoy being able to shoot a huge variety of lenses, many of them cheap and excellent glass.

Until you know you need the features, there is no reason to buy a heavyweight SLR body. Buy a good quality body that feels good in your hands, with convenient controls. And recognize that choosing a body commits you to buying lenses that fit that body mount. And if you really do get into photography, you will easily spend more on lenses than on body!
post #26 of 30
There's no lack of great ultrawides for Nikon DX cameras. I have the Tokina 11-16 2.8, which is one of the best lenses I own.
post #27 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Omega View Post
This is an excellent point! If you are not shooting professionally, there is little reason to go full frame. Cropped sensors, like the APS-C, are pretty strong. Buying into the cropped sensor allows you to spend more $ on a variety of good lenses instead of having to spend big money on glass that extends resolution to the corners of a full frame sensor. The one exception...I didn't notice mention of the type of photography you shoot...if you do a lot of landscape and wide-angle photography, then it may be worthwhile to go full frame, because the crop factor will make it both expensive and severely limiting in lens choice, to get wide angle perspectives anyway.

Also, I'll recommend the Pentax SLR's. For approx. half the cost of a Nikon or Canon offering, you can get a very nice weather-sealed body and some of the best prime lenses on the market. You give up a little speed in autofocus, but image quality is on par...and I enjoy being able to shoot a huge variety of lenses, many of them cheap and excellent glass.

Until you know you need the features, there is no reason to buy a heavyweight SLR body. Buy a good quality body that feels good in your hands, with convenient controls. And recognize that choosing a body commits you to buying lenses that fit that body mount. And if you really do get into photography, you will easily spend more on lenses than on body!
I shoot with a K-x which is great, but after using a K7 for a few days I fell in love. It's an amazing camera.
post #28 of 30
In terms of image quality, it's true that full frame and DX cameras are virtually matched. If your only interest is in outright sharpness, clarity, color, and noise, full frame sensors offer little measurable advantage in most situations.

Yet I would still recommend a D700 or Canon 5D, and for one simple reason: viewfinder size. After using a Nikon FM / FE - 35mm SLRs - for a couple months now, looking through my D200's viewfinder has seemed like staring down a tunnel; it makes composition and focus, especially with wider lenses, difficult and straining.

What's more, the lens argument against full-frame is largely moot. Just because certain lenses exhibit vignetting, coma, and corner softness at large aperture doesn't mean the images they take need cropping to be presentable. It's in fact extremely rare that any of these "defects" detract from a picture to the extent of ruining it; in many cases, they can even be used creatively to enhance an image.

The other cool thing about full-frame capture is exceptionally short depth of field at larger apertures - although, to be completely fair, this is a bit of a double-edged sword if you frequently shoot landscapes in low light.

If you're willing to buy used, Canon 5Ds (old version) sell on forums for grand or so, and you can pick up a set of used primes - 24, 50, and 85 - for around the same price.
post #29 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by trevorlane View Post
First off, KR said that only real men use Leica. That right there gave me a less than favorable impression of his ideas on photography. I've had cropped both Nikon/Canon (although that really doesn't make too much a difference) but the move from a D300 to a D700/D3 (the route I took) made me come to appreciate what happens in the corners. Even "full-frame lenses" have their short-comings when it comes to image quality on full-frame sensors. Vignetting and edge stretching are two issues I can think of on the top of my head. Try a 14-24 2.8 on a D3 and you'll see what I'm talking about. Stopping down may help with vignetting (somewhat) but the stretching effect at the edges still exists, because Nikon can only do so much to correct pincushion effects on their widest lenses. These issues can be corrected post-processing. The 50 1.4 doesn't exhibit these problems are strongly, but it's certainly noticeable in low-light situations. Quality of glass is certainly important on Full-Frame because of edges, and I would say that even more so on FX than DX. I'm sorry I couldn't spend more time on explanation, I'm leaving class right now for home, but I'll try and clear it up better as soon as I get back.

Curious Clutz, what lens works on FF but not on cropped? I thought it was usually the other way around.
You have to remember that just about everything Ken Rockwell says a level of irony to it. In joking that only "real men use Leica," Rockwell is mocking the mentality of some rich photographers that Leica cameras offer a level of usability, utilitarianism, and build quality that meshes with the stereotype of Manliness.

Also, remember that the "edge-stretching" of the 14-24mm reflects the nature of wide-angle lenses, rather than full-frame capture. My 12-24mm DX lens and the current 10-24mm DX lens exhibit almost identical, though slighty less pronounced effects on crop-body cameras.
post #30 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Clutz View Post
Hi all,

My wife and I are contemplating purchasing a DSLR in the distant future. Right now I've got a little Canon P&S (PoS?) that I got as a Christmas gift a few years ago. It's perfectly (in)adequate for taking casual shots. The contrast is lousy- it can't resolve light on light colour differences, but for a camera I can fit into any number of pockets and that cost $200, it's not terrible.

My wife would like to get a DSLR, and I'm similarly inclined. We're working on trying to start a family, and we'd like a good camera to take pictures with. My preference is to wait longer and save up for a full frame DSLR (my preference being a Nikon D700 over a Canon 5D mkII, and generally disinterested in the Sony options). For the types of pictures that I like to take, I like having the extra wide field of view, and I'm not sure I'd be too happy giving up a huge amount of crop factor (1.6x vs 1.0) on DX / APS-C sensors- but I am open to being convinced otherwise, if anyone wants to try. The big reason for considering going with a lower end DSLR (APS, APS-C, DX sensor) owuld be that it's considerably cheaper, so we could get it earlier. But on the flip side, I'm pretty sure (being who I am), that I'd end up wanting to get a full frame camera in which case the initial investment would've been somewhat wasted (either as lost value in a trade in, or just an unused extra camera body).

I've done photography before- I've take a few photography classes. I've got a pretty good idea what lenses I want. To start with I'd probably get something like a decent 50 MM and a 24-105 (or similar) zoom. For just being out and about (taking the dog / future kid for walks), the 50 MM lens is probably what I'd want to use most of the time, especially if it had a nice low f-stop. Alternately, perhaps I'd want a 24 (or lower) to 80 zoom, and and an 80-200 for different purposes, but whatever.

I'd also consider an EVIL camera. And in fact, in a lot of ways that seems like it'd be a good stop gap measure between our current terrible camera, and actually getting a good camera.

Thoughts?
For taking the Best photos of a child, you do not need FF. If you want to take building photos, landscape, wide angle indoor photos, then yes, get FF. Child photography, no.

In all my years of taking photos, if I wanted to take photos of people (non studio work), this is what I would get:

Nikon D300s (1520$)
Nikkor 24mm F/2.8 (360$) [very optional]
Nikkor 35mm F/2.0 (360$)
Nikkor 50mm F/1.8 (125$) [for such a small price, you have to]
Nikkor 85mm F/1.4 (1230$) or F/1.8 (450$)

If you are feeling adventurous, Nikkor 135mm DC (1300$).

If you can't afford to miss shots, replace those lenses with:
Nikkor 24-70mm F/2.8 (1740$)
Nikkor 70-200mm F/2.8 VR (2300$)

Bottom line. If you want the best child photography, you are going to want the best lenses. You're going to want fast lenses that can make silky smooth bokeh. Camera bodies can only make taking the photo easier (larger viewfinder, more features, quicker access to settings, etc), but it's the lenses that will give you fantastic photos!!!!!!! Can't stress that enough.

If you are dead set on FF, replace the D300s with the D700 for an extra 880$.

If you are Loaded with money, consider the canon range and get some of their real gems (canon 24mm F/1.4, 35mm F/1.4, 85mm F/1.2, 50mm F/1.2) along with a nice 5D mk2. That would be studio quality photos. If not, I would stick with Nikon for their ergonomics.

Any lenses slower than F/2.8 are less than ideal (unless you are talking 300mm +). You want the good lenses.

If I was strapped for money:
Nikon D300s
Nikkor 35mm F/2.0
Nikkor 85mm F/1.8 or 135mm F/2.0 DC (personal preference)
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