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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun. 16, 2006
    Location
    SE Coastal NC
    Posts
    1,708

    Default Best camera to buy?

    I've been interested in buying a new *nice* camera and thought with all of the after-thanksgiving sales that now might be a good time to shop.

    Everything I've read seems to point to the Nikon D3100 as being the most amateur friendly yet high quality camera out there. Do the camera savvy folks out there agree?

    I want something that is user friendly (I'm a photo novice but hope to learn more once I have a nice camera!) has a good battery life. I want it to be able to take action shots and also be able to take a series of photos quickly (i.e., the camera recovers quickly from one photo and is ready to take another in a short period of time!). The Nikon is at the top end of what I'd want to spend but if others agree that it's the go-to camera for the money then I'm not against spending that kind of money.

    What do the the more photo savvy COTHers recommend?
    "Farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil, and you're a thousand miles from the corn field." --Dwight D Eisenhower

    Boston Terrier Rescue of NC - www.btrnc.org - Adopt for Life!



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep. 2, 2008
    Location
    Greeley, Colorado
    Posts
    3,938

    Default

    I have the NikonD3100 and while I'm pretty tech savvy, there are still features on there that I haven't yet figured out and I've had it over a year! That said, there are plenty of easy point and shoot type settings that still take BEAUTIFUL pictures. Here are some examples:

    http://a4.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphot..._8303062_n.jpg

    http://a7.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphot..._6749506_n.jpg

    http://a4.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphot..._5887522_n.jpg

    http://a4.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphot..._4836775_n.jpg

    http://a7.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphot...7_721131_n.jpg

    http://a5.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphot..._7273489_n.jpg
    **Friend of bar.ka**

    Fils Du Reverdy (Revy)- 1993 Selle Francais Gelding
    My equine soulmate



  3. #3
    Join Date
    May. 10, 2009
    Location
    NC piedmont
    Posts
    2,200

    Default

    I have a Canon EOS 30D (which is no longer made, but the 50D is close), which can be as easy or as advanced as you want. It was recommended to me as one that is amateur-friendly but if you want to grow, a very good option. There is also the EOS Rebel, which is supposedly a little more used-friendly.

    Here are a few photos:

    http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?s...1&l=908501b10b

    http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?s...1&l=08f708f39f

    A few might have funky exposure;my fault as I like to experiment, not the camera's!

    The photographer my Website frequently uses shoots with a Rebel. But another friend does swear by Nikons as well, so I think you'd be well-served either way.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun. 16, 2006
    Location
    SE Coastal NC
    Posts
    1,708

    Default

    Thanks for the photos! I enjoyed looking at them And thanks for the input!
    "Farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil, and you're a thousand miles from the corn field." --Dwight D Eisenhower

    Boston Terrier Rescue of NC - www.btrnc.org - Adopt for Life!



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep. 14, 1999
    Location
    Just Enough Farm, GA
    Posts
    2,229

    Default

    My husband gave me the Nikon 3100 for my birthday back in September. I had extensive experience with the Nikon D70 thru my previous job, so was a little concerned about taking a "step down." No worries, the camera performs very well. I really like it.
    If you believe everything you read, better not read. -- Japanese Proverb




  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov. 1, 2007
    Location
    ....in a classroom in Fl, by the ocean
    Posts
    4,029

    Default

    I have a Canon PowerShot SX230HD. I love it! its not a fancy SLR, and it is a point and shoot, but it does have manual features and it makes awesome pictures and the zoom is Awesome



    http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?s...1&l=6c4a9f3c11



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar. 18, 2005
    Posts
    1,076

    Default

    I have the canon sx120 IS and the canon sx130 is I also have the
    Kodak zd8612 is. Out of the three of them I prefer the SX130 as it has alot of diffrent settings. I do however have the sx120 in my purse and pretty much take it with me where ever I go.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar. 30, 2007
    Location
    Hollowed out volcano in the South Pacific.
    Posts
    11,827

    Default

    Fujifilm HS20. It's a super-zoom camera with the performance of your average DSLR. The only difference is that it does not have a removable lens, but it has a high-quality telephoto zoom that covers the ranges you'd normally use and it also takes AA batteries. It really doesn't get any better than that since it costs less than the price of an entry-level DSLR.
    Thus do we growl that our big toes have, at this moment, been thrown up from below!



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr. 4, 2010
    Location
    yonder a bit, GA
    Posts
    3,598

    Default

    I admit I'm not very well-versed on the different camera models. However, I have a Nikon (D80) and really, really like it. I could probably upgrade since i've had it for 3-4 years now but I was so slow in exploring other settings that I don't think I can justify it yet!!

    A community/continuing education type of digital photography class would be a big help. I just got around to taking one and while I knew/had picked up some of it already, it was a lot of fun and really helped kick me in the butt to try those various settings and look a little more differently at subjects.

    I LOVE Nikon. The main reason I went with one is because my dad was giving me his old lenses (10+ years old). I went specifically with the d80 because at the time it was the lowest model on which those lenses would fit. That's another plus about Nikons- they do not change that part (sorry, my food coma is kicking in, i can't remember the technical terms) that connects the lens to the camera- that 'face' if you will, very often. This means that if you go to places with good used equipment, you won't have as much trouble/may not have to spend as much to find used lenses that will fit your specific camera. Look into the model you're thinking about just to be sure, but I'm very happy to know that I can find lenses (be them Nikon or another separate lens-making company) that will fit several Nikon bodies. I will be even happier about that when it's time for me to upgrade camera bodies myself!!


    Also, Magic Lantern guides (about $20) are really helpful if you need a bit more of an explanation on how to use the features.
    (A decidedly unhorsey) MrB knocks over a feed bucket at the tack shop and mutters, "Oh crap. I failed the stadium jumping phase."
    (he does listen!)



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun. 7, 2004
    Location
    Pittsburgh,Pennsylvaina
    Posts
    4,029

    Default

    Canon PowerShot SX30 IS - digital camera
    My camera. $445.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    May. 30, 2010
    Location
    Charlotte, NC
    Posts
    203

    Default

    I bought my first DSLR last December, and I'm absolutely in love with my D5000. My prior experience involves a 35mm film college class and fiddling around with a family member's Rebel XT on automatic settings. This camera was incredibly easy to learn how to use. The interface is definitely streamlined and amateur friendly. Personally, I like it better than the D3100. It has more frames per second, and its quicker to focus for action. It also feels a bit more substantial materials-wise. One thing I do not recommend for either of these cameras is video. I don't know how Nikon missed the boat on this, but neither one has auto-focus. So frustrating!

    I was able to dig through Amazon and found a deal with Adorama. I was able to get the body, a AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR (kit lens), and AF-S VR Zoom-Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G IF-ED for a little over $900. Bought seperately, it comes out to $1,420. Especially, if you want to shoot action, I highly recommend a telephoto lens so you can get more personal with the subject without getting into their space. My only beef with these lenses is the inability to shoot (well) in lowly lit areas, but that comes with a better f-stop (re: $$$).

    For some horse-related examples of the D5000, check out my shots from this year's Rolex. FWIW, I shoot RAW and edit my photographs with Adobe's Camera RAW (free plug-in for those with Photoshop).

    If you have any questions, please feel free to PM me!



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov. 6, 2002
    Location
    Henrico, NC 36 30'50.49" N 77 50'17.47" W
    Posts
    5,887

    Default

    If a D7000 is too pricey, get the 3100. For a good little point and shoot, check out the Casio's.

    I have a Casio FH100, which has been replaced by a newer model, for golf swing recording in super slo-mo, but it does a really surpising job with regular photos. Casio has a software fix for shutter lag on little cameras.

    To run old Nikon auto focus lenses, look at the D7000.

    Check out Ken Rockwell's reviews on any cameras you are considering, like the various Nikons.



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr. 21, 2010
    Posts
    2,568

    Default

    I'm not sure how fancy you want to go, but for an excellent point-and-shoot, a Panasonic Lumix is the greatest little secret out there.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec. 28, 2002
    Location
    From the South
    Posts
    1,133

    Default

    I bought a Nikon Coolpix L110 last year. Got it at Best Buy on sale. It takes great photos. I really like the different photo modes it offers-simple mode, face, sport, party,-for less than $200! Also has a 30 minute video mode with stereo sound. That was neat during last year's ice storm, could really hear the neighbor's kid sledding on ice, and then when she ran into her dad. Too much ice, and she couldn't stop! I'm happy with it, especially for the price and the zoom.
    Life is great when you can hug a horse.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar. 12, 2006
    Location
    Ocala
    Posts
    1,305

    Default

    I recently got a Nikon D90. Probably way more camera than I need, and Im barely using it as a point and shoot right now. I am planning on taking some time and really learning what I can do with it, but for now, even as a point and shoot, it makes me look good.

    http://classic.wunderground.com/wxim...37#slideanchor

    http://classic.wunderground.com/wxim...37#slideanchor



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun. 7, 2004
    Location
    Pittsburgh,Pennsylvaina
    Posts
    4,029



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jun. 16, 2006
    Location
    SE Coastal NC
    Posts
    1,708

    Default

    Thanks for all of the great info!! I'm going to do some more research into all of the models recommended and see which one(s) seem like the best fit.

    Whoever suggested the photography class, I totally agree. One of the local community colleges offers a photography class almost every semester and I would really like to sign up for it at some point. I figure if I splurge on a really nice camera it will make more more inclined to sign up for the class so I can get my money's worth out of my new toy
    "Farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil, and you're a thousand miles from the corn field." --Dwight D Eisenhower

    Boston Terrier Rescue of NC - www.btrnc.org - Adopt for Life!



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Apr. 14, 2001
    Location
    Minnesota
    Posts
    17,637

    Default

    I bought a Sony NEX-3, which is a much smaller form factor than a regular DSLR, and I could not be happier with it. It's light, it packs in my purse, and it produces lovely images. It has a full size APS-C sensor, same as the full size DSLRs.

    Sony is refreshing the line, so you can get the older ones (the NEX-3, 5 and 7) for not a whole lot of money right now.



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Mar. 18, 2005
    Posts
    1,076

    Default

    Check your local walmart too if you have one. The camera or electronics section usually has clearance camera's that are great. I got my canon Sx 130 for less than 300 as it was the last one and was a display model, the couldn't find the lense cap for it so they gave me a brand new one off the shelf and I also got a 4gb sd card from them too. I put the extended warenty on it too.



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Nov. 13, 2005
    Location
    between the mountains and the sea, North Carolina
    Posts
    2,936

    Default

    I have the fugifilm s2950. I've only had it a week & have been pleased with it so far. I've taken some great pictures on its outdoor settings, but am still trying to work out the indoor ones - indoor action shots keep coming out blurry! So far I've only used automatic settings on it. I think when I eventually go home I'll invest in a photography course as I seem to have forgotten my high school photo class days. Its clearly not a DSLR but is nowhere near the price of one. I hate when reviewers complain that "bridge" cameras are not of DSLR quality - sorry, but what did you expect? You get what you pay for and for its price I've been very pleased with this camera so far.

    https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net...52457779_n.jpg I think this came out well

    A few pictures at the beach I was pleased with

    https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net...32088506_n.jpg

    https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net...19915355_n.jpg

    https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net...94633857_n.jpg
    I love the panoramic setting - it automatically stitches pictures together on your camera!

    https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net...07445819_n.jpg I didn't even realise the boat was there when I took this picture! I was playing w/ the zoom so its really zoomed in.
    "Choose to chance the rapids, and dare to dance the tides" - Garth Brooks
    "With your permission, dear, I'll take my fences one at a time" - Maggie Smith, Downton Abbey



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