So, top of the line Point and Shoot or 'starter' DSLR?

Discussion in 'Digital Cameras & Equipment' started by ArnyVee, Sep 30, 2009.

  1. Tim

    Tim Administrator Staff Member

    you would still want a flash and cable release (with tripod)
  2. Roger

    Roger Member Staff Member

    HX1 does not appear to have a release or remote....but it does have a FW mode and a self timer.....

    just a bit of an FYI.

    Sony, other than their dSLRs use the new Memory Sticks. ; And I think only Sandisk makes a handful of them, so get at least 2. ; Batteries are pricey b/c Sony has their own special design. ; They change them regularly so 3rd party companies can't get up to speed to make their own. ; But the Sony batteries are about $60 each.

    And you can't use an external flash on that model.
  3. Roger

    Roger Member Staff Member

    FWIW, the Fuji has a hot shoe for an external flash, and has a cable release. ; Some of the older Sonys had a hot shoe, I guess they haven't seen the need demand for them.

    Canon only has the hot shoe on the G series. ; (plus the old Powershot Pro line that had L glass)
  4. ArnyVee

    ArnyVee Member


    So, how does not having a release, remote or hot shoe affect me in the picture-taking process? I'm trying to learn the basics. Remember, I'm a complete novice, so take it easy on me! ;)
  5. Roger

    Roger Member Staff Member

    Lack of a hot shoe: ; No external flash. ; (I'm not aware of any current P&S with a PC Sync cable - the old fashioned way of connecting a flash) ; You'll lose the ability to have a better flash with the camera over the built-in flash. ; What does it matter? ; It depends - you won't have flash at farther distances or macro. ; Regular portrait distances should still be okay.

    Lack of a remote/release: ; Tripod photography has always been burdened with two things: ; Mirror vibrations, or movement from pressing the shutter button. ; P&S digital cameras don't have a mirror, so that's not a problem. ; But, you can and will move the camera by pressing on the button, even on a tripod. ; A release prevents this from happening since the pressure of pushing the button is off the camera. ; What do you lose? ; Well, the easiest way to take fireworks/nighttime shots.
    Workaround: ; Self-timer, 2 secs. ; (assuming you can turn off the blinking light!) ; That will allow the camera to settle before taking a picture, since you don't want movement during the exposure. ; Biggest drawback with this workaround - fireworks, you will have 2 seconds where you're not taking a picture....
  6. ArnyVee

    ArnyVee Member

    Thanks for the info Roger! :)

    More info to chew on :D
  7. Roger

    Roger Member Staff Member

    You're welcome!
  8. WDWFigment

    WDWFigment Member

    Nothing really of substance to say, except that the Luxi F tripod is no longer made, so it won't be coming back into stock (unless they get some used ones) at B&H. ; The good news is that it's successor, the Luxi L, is almost exactly identical to it. ; Except the color. ; Unfortunately, it's also out of stock at B&H right now (but unlike the Luxi F, it should come back in stock).

    I like the D40--it was my first DSLR. ; If you get into it enough that you're wanting to buy lenses that aren't compatible with the D40, you'll probably want to upgrade bodies anyway, so I wouldn't let that hold you back. ; About the only 'big' popular entry level lens that isn't compatible is the 50mm f/1.8.
  9. Roger

    Roger Member Staff Member

    Which has kind of been updated for the DX age by the 35/1.8G, which it will AF with, and it's not that much more expensive than the 50/1.8.
  10. Craig

    Craig Member Staff Member

    welcome aboard!

    I'll throw in my opinion for a slr. the only thing a p&S does better is it is easier to carry.

    Since I ; only know nikon count me in as a fan as the entry level nikons.
    The remote for those cameras costs less than $20.

    The sb-400 flash is around $100, but you can wait to buy that until later or maybe you'll never need it! the built in flash will do a fine job for you in the beginning.

    Roger and I talked about choosing cameras here:
  11. zackiedawg

    zackiedawg Member Staff Member

    OK...don't want to be the Sony defender here...but I guess I am! ; The HX1 can take the exact same memory stick pro duo that their cameras took 3-4 years ago...they haven't changed the size or type of stick any more than all of the other memorystick makers did (SD, SDHC, SDHCmicro, etc)...there are just different versions of these newer memory cards, Sony's included, that are faster to keep up with the HD video speed and memory requirements in newer cameras. ; But if you stuck a good old 3 year old MS pro duo card in the HX1, you could snap photos until it was problems. ; And the MS pro duo cards are made by Sony, Sandisk, Lexar, PNG, and a few cheapie manufacturers I wouldn't trust. ; 8GB runs around $25 vs around $20 for the equivalent SDHC...not really all that big of a price spread in my opinion!

    Oh, and the battery for the HX1 is the NP-FH50. which sells for as low as $30 as long as you don't buy it from Sony's store! ; And really they don't change that quite as often as some think - the HX1 battery is compatible for over 50 models of camcorders in Sony's line over the past 4 years...they just decided to bring the camcorder battery over to the still camera because of the need for good stamina for HD video recording that these new still cameras have.

    You only need to decide how important flash photography will be for you...actually very few DSLR shooters even buy external flashes, and some that do rarely ever use them. ; Onboard flashes are capable of taking the family shot on vacation at the dinner table - but aren't really good at artistic flash shooting or professional level. ; It's all up to if you'll really need that.

    Just based on how you pointed out that you are a novice, I get the feeling the external flashes aren't something that needs to be at the top of your shopping list just yet.
  12. mPower

    mPower Member

    I agree with zackiedog, you really don't need to worry about an external flash right now. Get to know the camera before you fall in love with buying gear. Trust me, you'll have lots of time for that!

    The less junk you carry with you the better. It will force you to think about your frame and camera (hopefully in that order) and not on a bunch of other options you could/would/should have played with in your bag.
  13. Willful

    Willful Member

    Wow!! ; Lots of good info for sure :)

    Tim, that is some serious gear. ; Gives me something to work towards. ; 8)
  14. Tim

    Tim Administrator Staff Member

    if you play your cards right, i might let you see the inside of my bag at pixelmania! ; ;)
  15. ArnyVee

    ArnyVee Member

    So, I met with two friends (one from work and one online) and they both suggested I go with the DSLR. One even went as far as to show me how to create panoramic pictures very easily in Photoshop.

    So, I'm now leaning back towards the DSLR again :)

    I'm still doing more research online and I'm definitely going to take the suggestions about going to the store and actually holding the cameras and getting a feel for them. I did that the last time I was shopping for a camera and that's how I had narrowed it down to two different ones before.

    One of my friends mentioned that I should probably go for the D60 than the D40. Can anyone give me a quick comparison of the two or at least what you've heard about each?
  16. Roger

    Roger Member Staff Member

    D40 has 6mp, D60 has 10mp.

    Generally, the less pixels per square micrometer the better nowadays - the sensor is usually more sensitive in low light. ; However, the D40 and the D60 have the same sensor technology, so the D40 isn't a low light queen - the next generation sensor does that.

    For some reason, the D40 is the undisputed King of Flash Sync. ; Without using a special flash, the D40 can take flash pictures up to 1/500 sec. ; All other dSLRs max out at 1/250 or 1/320 second - without using high speed flash, which you need one of the larger external flashes to use.

    Other than that, they are the same size, weight, etc.

    Both the D40 and D60 have been replaced. ; The D40 is probably a stronger camera than its' replacement - the D3000; while the D5000 is stronger than the D60.
  17. ArnyVee

    ArnyVee Member

    Thanks Roger! ; :)

    So, looks like the D40 has held up over time and is still a strong camera. My friend that is in the camera business in Canada mentioned that it was one of his favorites even though he had some other ones that were considered 'better'.

    My other friend mentioned that eventually I'd want to go with the DSLR and that rather than spending the money now on the HX1 and then 'upgrading' to the DSLR at a later date would obviously be a waste of money. And, I could use that same money to upgrade the D40 and pick up some extras.
  18. ArnyVee

    ArnyVee Member

    On the Nikon D40, which lens do I have to buy (or does it already come with one) to ensure that I get the auto-focus feature?
  19. Roger

    Roger Member Staff Member

    Any that state "AF-S". ; Or for the third party lenses - they say that they have a built-in lens motor. ; Almost all of the third party companies are building motors in the lenses, and even Nikon hasn't released a non-tilt shift lens without a lens motor recently that I know of. ...

    If you look at this list, you'll see that there are only a handful of zoom lenses left in production that aren't AF-S, and then prime lenses other than the 35/1.8G and the new 50/1.4G.
  20. zackiedawg

    zackiedawg Member Staff Member're usually fine with the newer lenses - just be sure to ask or double check if in doubt. ; It's mostly for when you start getting addicted to photography, and start looking for specialty lenses - going to used lenses saves a ton of cash and can get you some real wonderful hidden gems...but you'll just have to be careful to look for the lens focus motors when shopping around.

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