Need a new Camera

Discussion in 'GBAtemp Art Studio' started by Youkai, Jan 22, 2015.

  1. Youkai

    Youkai Demon

    Jul 1, 2004
    Germany , NRW
    Hi there,
    I really "need" a new Camera as my Old one is really bad especially when the Light is not perfect but I have no clue at all about Cameras ^^V

    I was thinking of getting a "cheap" reflex camera (<- told me this is how it is called ...) for about ~500€
    But a friend told me that it would make more sense getting a compact Camera with one or two good extras.

    I have no Idea at all about all those things that are important for a "good" Camera and searching for "best Camera 2014" or something like this gives me many different Cameras and I am not really sure which infos are important for me and which would be completely irrelevant.

    I need a Camera that Makes good Sharp Pictures and which reacts fast ! my old one takes 1-10 seconds sometimes (especially when the light is bad) and the slightest shaking destroys the whole picture :(
    And good would be the Chance to Manually Focus like with the Old Cameras so that I can focus on whatever I want and not the Camera ... with my current one I sometimes need to "refocus" many many times until I finally get the focus on what I want :/

    No need for an ultra High Resolution just something which is good enough to be Printed as a Picture for my Wall :)
    My Old Camera was "okay" with perfect light so I already got some okay Pictures but most were to bad quality

    IMG_20150122_161403~2.jpg ( left pic is 60x40 cm )
  2. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

    pip Reporter
    Nov 21, 2005
    United Kingdom
    By "reflex" camera I assume you mean SLR (single lens reflex), or these days probably D-SLR (digital single lens reflex) as you probably do not want the hassle of film.
    Are you doing any video with this? Most cameras will have such functionality these days but you might be able to push things into the static photo realm and cost yourself some capability in video, or sacrifice a tiny bit of static (though it will still be amazing) and get good video.

    "when the Light is not perfect"
    Does that mean you want a proper low light capable camera? They do exist (see some of the stuff like the Sony a7s, though such a thing is probably outside your price range). Or do you mean you want a camera that can take a picture of the daylight sky and have some detail but also capture the ground, this is known as HDR or high dynamic range. You can fake HDR but that might also be something extra. Equally this could also be a user error thing on your part. Though you can not light everything (be it actively or with a bounce board) I also suggest picking up a few "daylight" bulbs as they are great for this sort of thing.

    Anyway it sounds like you are getting ready to take the next step into cameras. 500 Euros is not the most but it will get you something shiny and certainly can get it done. ( was taken using auto settings on a 160 Euro camera).

    Do you have any existing lenses you are attached to? Probably not from the sounds of things but I do have to ask.

    "reacts fast" these days is usually more of a function of your camera settings and the speed of the memory card you use.
    "slightest shaking destroys the whole picture"
    Image stabilisation does exist and actually kind of works (do remember to turn if off for video if you are panning around). What I am more here to say is get a tripod or get a monopod (not a stupid "selfie stick" but a proper monopod, though "Einbeinstativ" is the term you probably want to search for around you). They are very good things to have and you can get a proper fold up monopod that weighs next to nothing for not an awful lot.

    Anyway there are many ways to classify cameras but at that price range you are likely fighting between two broad styles

    1) Integrated lens aka compact camera, be it one that "looks" like a proper camera (sometimes known as bridge) or an actual compact camera that looks like a tourist camera.
    2) No lens, just "camera body" aka system camera (Systemkamera) and you get a lens separate (though you might get a bundle deal). Possibly a second hand version of the slightly higher end as well.

    The fancy camera folk will tell me 1) is a poor choice of camera and at some levels they might be right. On the other hand it will definitely be able to get something done and only really come up short against the silly money lenses, for the times you need a special special lens (super wide angle, telephoto, fisheye, specialist close up....) or want to do lens whacking (not a fan of the effects it produces myself but some like it). The fancy camera folk they also want their cameras to shoot "RAW" format rather than JPEG and there are a few advantages for this.
    Naturally there are many different types and variations on the theme of camera lens, however if you can spring for it then the so called "micro 4/3" camera family usually has adapters that can make most things work.

    Manual focus is nice. Modern digital ones will allow you to touch on the touchscreen to select what you want to focus on too, even allow you to select multiple things.

    60x40 cm is about a2 size... For the big boy 300dpi stuff then that would be something silly like nearly 35megapixels, 200dpi is a more manageable 15 and 150dpi which is still great for most things is more like 9 megapixels, so pretty much most cameras you might find. However this all assumes you want what you shoot and do not want to crop anything down (cropping down is the suggested path these days for people).

    Actual model numbers at this price range, afraid I am about a year out of that world at this point (people I deal with either want several thousand and also video capability, or something somewhat cheaper that actually works). I will have to do some research on what goes. For a first quick pass it looks like you can pick up a second hand Canon EOS 5D and a decent (though basic) lens for about what you want, note this is not the same as the Canon 5D mark3 that got popular a couple of years ago for video makers.
  3. Youkai

    Youkai Demon

    Jul 1, 2004
    Germany , NRW
    Hi thanks FAST, it feels like you know everything oO nice :)

    Well yeah I am talking about SLR (didn't know its the same term in English XD)
    And with the "bad" light I am talking about "rooms with just a little bit light" or when the sun is already going down or maybe even in the night with just some lanterns around.
    Someone I met at my last Holliday had some "cheap" camera which actually too really good pictures in the dark ! the Camera was even less expensive than mine but the Pictures were rather small ^^V

    I might even spend a little bit more than 500€ but even though I like to take Photos I am no Hobby Photographer who goes around town all the time taking pictures so I wouldn't need it that much and it would be a waste to buy
    a Camera for 1000€ and let it get dusty in cupboard :(

    About the Speed ... I remember the good old Times with our old non Digital Cameras where you pressed the Button and the Picture was taken ... no waiting several seconds no extra focusing just taking the picture as seen.

    So you would also say a "Systemkamera" would be the better Choice ? (That's what my friend mentioned not Compact XD my bad)

    Not sure if it was the Canon EOS 5D think it was something with 600 or whatever but that one already draw my attention a few times as many say it is a very good beginner Camera but I could find no information at all about the
    quality with not much light, speed and so on ...
  4. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

    pip Reporter
    Nov 21, 2005
    United Kingdom
    Photos fall alongside video cameras these days and knowing optics in general is fairly key for what I do. Mind you static photos are not my main thing by any means.

    Canon do have a relatively new model called the eos 600d at the price range you were looking at, however it is now discontinued and has a two newer models out (though using the same lenses and you will probably still be able to find batteries and more for years to come). It is indeed a middle/enthusiast level camera but still in the SLR world and it will probably do you proud and take fantastic photos. It is not a bad camera by any means but I am not sure if that old 5d model will beat it or if there was a model that beats it for the price released since it came out. Second hand values appear to be holding pretty high so usually means it has not been massively outclassed. On the flip side they also do a true entry level series but still good for most things in the likes of the 1200D, reading some reviews it might come up slightly short for the low light stuff compared to some of the more expensive offerings but still good and probably better than what you have now. It does also use the Canon lenses of the higher end models too so you could also step up when the time comes.

    On the matter of low light it sounds like you have two problems
    1) Metering
    2) ISO performance at higher levels, possibly.

    metering is where the camera will try to guess what the light level is and then adjust accordingly, however if you have a light coming in but a dark scene the camera can be fooled a bit.
    In short higher iso = more light coming in which is great for low light, however it does mean more noise in the picture. Not all cameras/sensors are created equal though so some cameras have better performance at higher iso levels.

    Low light performance has increased quite a bit in recent years so I would not be surprised to find your older gear outclassed there, even if it would trounce the same thing in daylight.

    On the matter of HDR have a look for a video teaching you how to fake HDR (it usually amounts to expose for the bright areas, expose for the dark, have fun with a layer mask).

    Speed. Don't take at the full resolution if you do not have to, disable the post processing effects (cameras will have them in these days) and wait for when you get back to a PC, and get a good memory card (not hard these days though do check as speed ratings do not always include write speeds). The 600d does claim "3.7fps" shooting and pulls it off, newer models have bumped that to 5fps though.
    Equally it is not going to be enough for some of your larger prints but 1080p video is not bad to grab stills from, indeed a lot of people are getting the 4k video cameras (panasonic DMC-GH4 being a good example, though probably starting at double what you wish to spend) as they are effectively about 8 megapixels.
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