Author Topic: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?  (Read 2081 times)

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Offline WhiteStorm

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Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« on: February 27, 2013, 09:45:38 am »
Model and/or brand.

I'm mostly referring to DSLR - I've been meaning to get one for ages, and always end up needing money for something else first, be it car, computer, etc. - but I figured that might be a bit niche to actually get much of a response. Plus cheaper cameras (relative to DSLR lots of cameras are cheap, so YMMV) do sometimes seem to give good results, depending who I'm asking.

So, is there one, or a series, or just brand in general that you prefer? What things in particular lead you to favour it/them, or if you've no particular preference, what sort of things do/would you look for in one? And what do you use it for?

EDIT: oh, and is there anyone still using film? Are there any remaining benefits to it now, or just for the nostalgia?
« Last Edit: February 27, 2013, 09:47:09 am by WhiteStorm »
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Offline Mylo

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2013, 03:53:25 pm »
I used film once just for the nostalgia.  :)  I found a Pentax K1000 at a garage sale...the film cost more than the camera, but I wanted to try out this 99% mechanical camera just to see what taking film pictures was like.  The pictures came out very lovely with the included 50mm f/2.0 lens.  But in the end, I realize why they made digital.  You really have to think about every shot, because you've got a limited number of exposures to get it right. 



As for DSLRs, the future is ILC cameras.  Like the Sony NEX series.  It's just a matter of time.   



My own personal camera?  I don't have one...although the camera on my smartphone is excellent for a smartphone camera.  I love to take pictures, and someday, I'll buy a nice camera.

Offline Ziel

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2013, 06:42:11 pm »
As for DSLRs, the future is ILC cameras.  Like the Sony NEX series.  It's just a matter of time. 

I honestly doubt this will be the case, at least for professional photography. I can see that once the prices on these drop to be a little more in-line with actual DSLR's, the enthusiast consumer will probably choose to take that route over a DSLR, simply because the image quality is generally similar between lower-end DSLRs and higher-end ILCs, so the portability and slightly easier use (more similar to the point-and-shoot camera these people are probably upgrading from) will probably win out.

I actually just a few weeks ago finally upgraded my camera. My old one still took fine pictures, but it had some mechanical issues which made it a bit of a pain to bother using. I was contemplating the ILC vs. DSLR thing, and ultimately decided that I'd rather go with the DSLR. In the price range that I was looking at, the options in the DSLR category were just a little more attractive. Part of what drove this is that I would really only want to look at the latest generation of ILCs, since it's still such a young technology. There are pretty significant changes and advancements coming in for these cameras between generations.

As happy as I've been with my old Canon P&S, I went with a Nikon for my DSLR instead. The D3200 to be precise. I picked the Nikon over the Canon after looking at both of them in a store and playing around with the settings and menus on them. I could find everything that I was looking for more easily on the Nikon than the Canon. I figured it only made sense to choose the one that felt a little more natural for me to navigate, since I wouldn't expect much difference in actual performance between the two.

But I've only had the D3200 for a few weeks now, and I really haven't had an opportunity to really put it to good use yet. So I'd say that I expect it to be my favorite of the two that I've owned once I've used it more.

This isn't to minimize the use I got out of my old camera, though. I will say that I absolutely loved that thing. It was a Canon A530. 5mp resolution, 1.5" lCD screen, no image stabilization at all. But it took some terrific pictures. One thing that I loved was that it took regular AA battteries, rather than having a special rechargeable battery. It just seemed much easier to always be able to have or easily find spare batteries for it without having to worry if they were charged.

But the best feature by far was the 'Manual' mode, which ended up being my go-to mode when using it. Some P&S cameras back then had either an Aperture Priority or Shutter Speed Priority mode, but not many had a full-blown manual mode that let you set both independently. It was fairly limited, though, as the aperture usually would only let you choose between 2 or maybe 3 different options, but at least it was there and it let me learn how to utilize those parameters to get the results that I wanted. And this, ultimately, it was made me really want to get a DSLR.

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Offline Mylo

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2013, 07:32:44 pm »
As for DSLRs, the future is ILC cameras.  Like the Sony NEX series.  It's just a matter of time. 

I honestly doubt this will be the case, at least for professional photography. I can see that once the prices on these drop to be a little more in-line with actual DSLR's, the enthusiast consumer will probably choose to take that route over a DSLR, simply because the image quality is generally similar between lower-end DSLRs and higher-end ILCs, so the portability and slightly easier use (more similar to the point-and-shoot camera these people are probably upgrading from) will probably win out.

I'm just thinking though, technologically, what potentially separates these cameras from DSLRs, except for the fact that one has a mechanical shutter?  I think in the future, response time will just grow closer and closer with DSLRs, and as for settings, that's what these prosumer models are for.  As for professionals, I wonder what high end features a DSLR has that an ILC cannot potentially provide.

Offline Ziel

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2013, 07:34:19 pm »
As for DSLRs, the future is ILC cameras.  Like the Sony NEX series.  It's just a matter of time.  

I honestly doubt this will be the case, at least for professional photography. I can see that once the prices on these drop to be a little more in-line with actual DSLR's, the enthusiast consumer will probably choose to take that route over a DSLR, simply because the image quality is generally similar between lower-end DSLRs and higher-end ILCs, so the portability and slightly easier use (more similar to the point-and-shoot camera these people are probably upgrading from) will probably win out.

I'm just thinking though, technologically, what potentially separates these cameras from DSLRs, except for the fact that one has a mechanical shutter?  I think in the future, response time will just grow closer and closer with DSLRs, and as for settings, that's what these prosumer models are for.  As for professionals, I wonder what high end features a DSLR has that an ILC cannot potentially provide.

Full-frame sensor.

Also, the satisfying mechanical click of the mirror :P
« Last Edit: February 27, 2013, 07:37:18 pm by Ziel »

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Offline Mylo

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2013, 07:36:44 pm »
As for DSLRs, the future is ILC cameras.  Like the Sony NEX series.  It's just a matter of time.  

I honestly doubt this will be the case, at least for professional photography. I can see that once the prices on these drop to be a little more in-line with actual DSLR's, the enthusiast consumer will probably choose to take that route over a DSLR, simply because the image quality is generally similar between lower-end DSLRs and higher-end ILCs, so the portability and slightly easier use (more similar to the point-and-shoot camera these people are probably upgrading from) will probably win out.

I'm just thinking though, technologically, what potentially separates these cameras from DSLRs, except for the fact that one has a mechanical shutter?  I think in the future, response time will just grow closer and closer with DSLRs, and as for settings, that's what these prosumer models are for.  As for professionals, I wonder what high end features a DSLR has that an ILC cannot potentially provide.

Full-frame sensor.

Although the price is still very high...  x_x  And this is not an ILC, but the principle is there.

http://store.sony.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10551&storeId=10151&langId=-1&productId=8198552921666487155


Offline Ziel

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #6 on: February 27, 2013, 07:48:50 pm »
As for DSLRs, the future is ILC cameras.  Like the Sony NEX series.  It's just a matter of time.  

I honestly doubt this will be the case, at least for professional photography. I can see that once the prices on these drop to be a little more in-line with actual DSLR's, the enthusiast consumer will probably choose to take that route over a DSLR, simply because the image quality is generally similar between lower-end DSLRs and higher-end ILCs, so the portability and slightly easier use (more similar to the point-and-shoot camera these people are probably upgrading from) will probably win out.

I'm just thinking though, technologically, what potentially separates these cameras from DSLRs, except for the fact that one has a mechanical shutter?  I think in the future, response time will just grow closer and closer with DSLRs, and as for settings, that's what these prosumer models are for.  As for professionals, I wonder what high end features a DSLR has that an ILC cannot potentially provide.

Full-frame sensor.

Although the price is still very high...  x_x  And this is not an ILC, but the principle is there.

http://store.sony.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10551&storeId=10151&langId=-1&productId=8198552921666487155


That's not an ILC. Lens is fixed. So it's basically just a sophisticated point-and-shoot. No optical viewfinder (required use of live-view on the LCD which kills battery life). And no mirrorless ILC has yet to match the performance of the auto-focus and continuous FPS capability of DSLRs. Especially when you look at the nearly-$3k price point where that RX1 lives.

Don't get me wrong. The RX1 is an impressive camera. But it looks more like a toy for rich enthusiasts.
« Last Edit: February 27, 2013, 07:51:30 pm by Ziel »

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Offline Mylo

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #7 on: February 27, 2013, 07:52:41 pm »
And speaking of high price...


Offline Mylo

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #8 on: February 27, 2013, 07:57:28 pm »
That's not an ILC. Lens is fixed. So it's basically just a sophisticated point-and-shoot. No optical viewfinder (required use of live-view on the LCD which kills battery life). And no mirrorless ILC has yet to match the performance of the auto-focus and continuous FPS capability of DSLRs. Especially when you look at the nearly-$3k price point where that RX1 lives.

Don't get me wrong. The RX1 is an impressive camera. But it looks more like a toy for rich enthusiasts.

That's not the point.  What I'm asking is...do you think that we will eventually do away with the SLR in DSLR (along with the mirror) sometime in the near future, or even the future?  I think yes, but I guess you're right in the fact that if costs don't come down, then DSLRs are here to stay.  The auto-focus is slower and continuous FPS is lower now, but do you think it will match high end DSLRs in the future?  Like any new technology, the cost will always be high when it first comes out.  You are the electrical engineer...am I missing something that would technically stop an ILC from reaching a DSLR in quality?  ;)

Offline Ziel

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #9 on: February 27, 2013, 08:18:29 pm »
That's not an ILC. Lens is fixed. So it's basically just a sophisticated point-and-shoot. No optical viewfinder (required use of live-view on the LCD which kills battery life). And no mirrorless ILC has yet to match the performance of the auto-focus and continuous FPS capability of DSLRs. Especially when you look at the nearly-$3k price point where that RX1 lives.

Don't get me wrong. The RX1 is an impressive camera. But it looks more like a toy for rich enthusiasts.

That's not the point.  What I'm asking is...do you think that we will eventually do away with the SLR in DSLR (along with the mirror) sometime in the near future, or even the future?  I think yes, but I guess you're right in the fact that if costs don't come down, then DSLRs are here to stay.  The auto-focus is slower and continuous FPS is lower now, but do you think it will match high end DSLRs in the future?  Like any new technology, the cost will always be high when it first comes out.

Like I said before, I actually do believe that for professional photography, the true DSLR camera will not be going away. What's more likely to happen is that these mirrorless cameras get close enough to the overall performance of the lower-end DSLRs that enthusiast consumers (such as myself) will choose to go that route instead.

There are some other things that the DSLRs get that the mirrorless systems lose out on. One is actually one of the very things they are trying to draw people in with: size. As long as the weight remains manageable, some of those smaller-bodied cameras are less comfortable to use for extended periods of time simply because of their size. Related to this is also button real-estate. Obviously, you don't want to have an overly-complex button layout. But professional photographers also have a number of features that they want available with easy access. The more compact size of the mirrorless systems is a bit more constrictive in terms of space to put some of these adjustments buttons to make them make sense. Many of these go for more of a minimal button layout. Some even switch to a touch-screen interface instead. Not a bad idea, but again, this will force use of the LCD which will again cause battery life concerns for people using the camera a lot. It also means that the photographer would have to pull the camera down to make any adjustments.

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Offline Mylo

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #10 on: February 27, 2013, 08:33:58 pm »
That's not an ILC. Lens is fixed. So it's basically just a sophisticated point-and-shoot. No optical viewfinder (required use of live-view on the LCD which kills battery life). And no mirrorless ILC has yet to match the performance of the auto-focus and continuous FPS capability of DSLRs. Especially when you look at the nearly-$3k price point where that RX1 lives.

Don't get me wrong. The RX1 is an impressive camera. But it looks more like a toy for rich enthusiasts.

That's not the point.  What I'm asking is...do you think that we will eventually do away with the SLR in DSLR (along with the mirror) sometime in the near future, or even the future?  I think yes, but I guess you're right in the fact that if costs don't come down, then DSLRs are here to stay.  The auto-focus is slower and continuous FPS is lower now, but do you think it will match high end DSLRs in the future?  Like any new technology, the cost will always be high when it first comes out.

Like I said before, I actually do believe that for professional photography, the true DSLR camera will not be going away. What's more likely to happen is that these mirrorless cameras get close enough to the overall performance of the lower-end DSLRs that enthusiast consumers (such as myself) will choose to go that route instead.

There are some other things that the DSLRs get that the mirrorless systems lose out on. One is actually one of the very things they are trying to draw people in with: size. As long as the weight remains manageable, some of those smaller-bodied cameras are less comfortable to use for extended periods of time simply because of their size. Related to this is also button real-estate. Obviously, you don't want to have an overly-complex button layout. But professional photographers also have a number of features that they want available with easy access. The more compact size of the mirrorless systems is a bit more constrictive in terms of space to put some of these adjustments buttons to make them make sense. Many of these go for more of a minimal button layout. Some even switch to a touch-screen interface instead. Not a bad idea, but again, this will force use of the LCD which will again cause battery life concerns for people using the camera a lot. It also means that the photographer would have to pull the camera down to make any adjustments.

Ah I see.  Is there a point to having a moving mirror other than the fact that you can see exactly what is going to the sensor (but then again, electronic viewfinders are only getting better).  With an ILC camera, couldn't you make one where the LCD can turn off and instead, the electronic viewfinder can be used?  ILC cameras don't have to be small; they just lack a mirror or any kind of glass between the sensor and the lens.  They can be slightly larger to incorporate all necessary controls I presume.  I suppose then they would be more like high end camcorders.
« Last Edit: February 27, 2013, 08:35:35 pm by Mylo »

Offline WhiteStorm

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #11 on: February 27, 2013, 11:34:55 pm »
lol... I completely forgot there were people who hadn't actually used film cameras before. The price doesn't surprise me though, I think if I still had a working film camera I'd have to drive 1-3 hours or order online to even find film.

Also, I forget the exact model now, but I had one of those Canon point/shoot cameras with the rechargeable li-ion battery. I got it around... 2003/2004, and I think it actually still works, but I gave it away a while ago when I left the country, along with the other stuff I didn't take. From memory I think the battery was around $30 (I didn't replace it, but if I'd needed a spare) and it tended to last long enough that I wouldn't have had to worry about swapping unless I was without power for a while and taking quite a lot of pictures (or using the flash a lot, but I never liked it).

Probably did end up cheaper than if I would've been using disposables though, unless I charged them anyway (I had a thing... for this... I don't know what happened to it or when).
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Offline Mylo

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #12 on: February 27, 2013, 11:40:52 pm »
What kind of film are you referring to in which you have to drive 1-3 hrs to get it?

Now that you mention disposable cameras, I remember my family and I used them when we went to the beach about a year ago.  I know they have underwater digital cameras, but since it was a vacation, we just decided to get the novelty disposable underwater film cameras.  We got them developed and got the pictures in film and on a CD.  :)

Offline WhiteStorm

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #13 on: February 27, 2013, 11:55:56 pm »
I meant batteries, although thinking back, there were always SO MANY disposable underwater/waterproof cameras when I was growing up, I think because then they only need to make it waterproof until the first time it gets opened. It used to deeply frustrate me for some reason; I always wanted to fix it and keep using it, but was told it was cheaper to just buy more.

I had no idea this persisted with digital cameras. It seems like it would be much easier/cheaper to make one that remains waterproof, given how little of it need regularly be opened by comparison.

1-3 hours is roughly the time to bigger cities where a place may yet exist that bothers to sell film (conveniently, they're all more or less in a row). It's been so long since I saw any shops like that, I doubt I could buy any kind here.
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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #14 on: February 27, 2013, 11:59:43 pm »
Does anybody remember one of these? Probably not.  :P I used to have one back in 1981 when I visited my dad for vacation out in Colorado. Not sure if I still have any of the pictures from that camera or not. Might have to rummage through the old photo album books some day.



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Offline WhiteStorm

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #15 on: February 28, 2013, 12:19:02 am »
Never seen one of those before, but I looked it up and it turns out I have come across the fancier version of the same thing even though I didn't know the product name (probably largely owing to the fact that I call everything Polaroid ever made 'Polaroid').

Not sure I agree with the aesthetics of the solid body ones... I'd feel like I should be pointing it at a lightbulb and clicking through a circle of semi-transparent images.
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Offline Mylo

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #16 on: February 28, 2013, 12:22:32 am »
Does anybody remember one of these? Probably not.  :P I used to have one back in 1981 when I visited my dad for vacation out in Colorado. Not sure if I still have any of the pictures from that camera or not. Might have to rummage through the old photo album books some day.



I think I remember having one of these, or at least, my parents having one.  I see them all the time in thrift stores though...it's amazing how the design aesthetic has changed throughout the years.  (:

My parents also had one of these (not the exact model, but something very similar):


Offline Choky

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #17 on: March 02, 2013, 10:23:08 pm »
I currently own the Canon 500D,but when I can afford it then I am upgrading to the Canon 5D mkIII,or even the mkII which is still good at todays standards if I found it ridiculously cheap. My gallery for the 500D: Here.

As for ILCs,different strokes for different folks,I myself would use nothing less than a DSLR,anything else would be a step backwards,but at the end of the day its what you feel most comfortable with.But the situations where a pro photographer would use liveview over the traditional optical viewfinder and are few and far between.
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Offline WhiteStorm

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #18 on: March 02, 2013, 11:33:47 pm »
Come to think of it, an ILC would probably be good for UV or IR (assuming any are made to usefully detect it) since looking through the viewfinder for non-visible light is somewhat futile anyway.

Hm... 500Ds (or is it the whole series?) have some popular aftermarket firmware upgrades, right? I never paid much attention to that but it did seem curious, as they were the only sort I ever saw it mentioned about.
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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #19 on: March 03, 2013, 01:55:46 am »
Come to think of it, an ILC would probably be good for UV or IR (assuming any are made to usefully detect it) since looking through the viewfinder for non-visible light is somewhat futile anyway.

You have to pretty much butcher a camara for IR photography by permanently removing the internal IR filter(and ILC camaras are quite expensive). The only other way is to use an IR filter(cheap on eBay depending on density) on the actual outer lens itself letting only the IR light through,and what is the problem with this? Well,since the amount of light coming through the filter on the lens AND the filter on the camara is so little,you wouldnt be able to see it on liveview either(which is why IR photography on a non-IR-modded camera is pretty much exclusively for long exposures and you have to focus before attaching the filter). Then again the expanded ISO of a 5D mkIII is 102,400(wow),so you might be able to see something there for focusing purposes(I dont know),but thats a 3 and a half grand machine,its to be expected. Best bet for that would be buy a cheap old 20D or something and have it IR modded.

Hm... 500Ds (or is it the whole series?) have some popular aftermarket firmware upgrades, right? I never paid much attention to that but it did seem curious, as they were the only sort I ever saw it mentioned about.

I know the 5D mkII did have a firmware hack for better video,lifting certain limitations in certain aspects,the 500D doesnt as far as I know. But any Canon that supports custom presets has access to the picture style developed by Technicolor called Technicolor Cinestyle which you can stick in over a USB cable+PC and is great for video since its even more neutral than the actual neutral preset(also crushing the blacks much less),and is absolutly great for editing video afterwards. Only drawback is it overwrites a previous preset,which is annoying,then again a freebie from Technicolor is total WIN! :D
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Offline WhiteStorm

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Re: Do You Have a Favourite Camera?
« Reply #20 on: March 03, 2013, 05:43:30 am »
I forget what I read about it now unfortunately, I'm not sure what sort of things it did. It was mostly the principle that interested me, as I'd just never really thought of it as something that would benefit much from altered software.

re: IR/UV, I meant that it would be a good way to release cameras intended for it, since they don't really need to be SLR anyway and might as well save on size. As far as I know it's fairly pointless with a camera that isn't at least designed with the possibility in mind though, so (if I actually had a reason to do it) I don't think I'd attempt modding one that wasn't meant for it.
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