Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Advice: Which DSLR?

So I'm thinking of buying a digital camera to celebrate income-tax-refund day. I've got a small point-and-shoot (Canon S410) that I have been very happy with (except for the lens cover mechanism). We've taken the little guy all over and we'll expect to continue to use him for a while yet.

But I've been aching for more command over my pictures and that's where a DSLR comes in. Hopefully I'll be able to take better pictures with a camera I can control more. Unfortunately I won't be able to just blame the camera for my lousy...

What I'm looking for:
* Lowish initial cost
* Full control over aperture, shutter speed, white balance, flash,...
* Automatic mode (for when I don't want to think too much)
* Interchangeable lenses

While I don't have my heart set on this combination, I think I've found a winner with the Nikon D70s. I'll pick up a Nikkor 18-55mm lens (or perhaps the 18-70mm) and in a few months an external flash. This allows me the money to invest in decent lenses later on and I don't have to worry about them being compatible with current/future Nikon cameras.

So I'm looking for advice - any thoughts on the D70s? Should I be looking at a different model? Or perhaps Canon is a better choice? Please - I'll take all the information and suggestions I can get.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

You may know of it already, but the website below has very extensive reviews of digital cameras.

http://www.dpreview.com/

Darren

Richard Siemens said...

Thanks Darren - dpreview.com is a great site for all things digital camera.

I've also found the following sites useful, informative and/or inspiring

http://www.steves-digicams.com
http://www.kenrockwell.com
http://strobist.com

George said...

Well, you already know my opinion, but I'll say it again: the D70s is a keeper. I don't think you'll be disappointed, especially if it feels comfortable to use. My only suggestion would be to get a good tripod. If you're doing outdoor photography, you'll get more mileage out of a tripod than a flash because your subject is typically out of flash range.

greg said...

Found this during my daily tech news search...

http://www.geardigest.com/2007/03/29/buyers_guide_26_digital_slr_cameras/

Greg

greg said...

and of course it cuts off a cut/paste of text. :P

the rest:

26_digital_slr_cameras/

Greg

Timmy B said...

Certainly can't go wrong with anything from Nikon. I had a D70, loved it, it got stolen, then upgraded to a D80 post insurance. However, apparently the D40 kicks some butt too at a great price, and it has a 2.5" screen instead of the D70s's 2" which can make a big difference. (and it's lighter). I think the D70s is being discontinued.

Richard Siemens said...

Greg: thanks for the link - I'll check it out this afternoon

Tim: Ya the D70s is discontinued, but I'll probably go used anyways, so it doesn't matter. I've considered the D40, but I won't be able to autofocus older lenses. I figure I'll be able to get a D70s body ($600) plus a nikkor 18-55mm ($140), plus a nikkor 55-200mmVR ($340) for about $1100.

The D80 is quite the nice camera, but I figure I can spend the extra $500 on lenses. Plus if I really start getting into it, I'll pick up the D80 body later.

(for some reason I though you shot Canon. weird)