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Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Wed Jan 23, 2019 11:13 pm
by TankBuster
Hi all,

Before posting this I've been trawling through old posts looking for advice on a budget DSLR set up for a newbie. I'm just looking for a DSLR which can be used for all round photography plus a lens for all round photography and another zoom lens for the occasional fast aircraft shot. I'm not looking to spend a fortune as the camera wont be used a huge amount, just a set up that can capture clearer and crisper image than a bridge camera... Or is there a bridge camera that can do the lot?

Cheers,
TankBuster

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Thu Jan 24, 2019 9:18 am
by Sparts99
What's your total budget?

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Thu Jan 24, 2019 1:39 pm
by TankBuster
Hi,

Yeah that's a good point. Daft head aren't I :lol: .

Total spend is the £400-£500 mark.

Cheers!

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Thu Jan 24, 2019 3:14 pm
by dollar99
As you aren't tied to any particular brand the world is your lobster as Del Boy used to say :P

Best advice, take a visit to somewhere like Currys and have a play with the cameras on offer and see if you like the feel of one of the brands better than the other. Once you have a brand in mind you can then look to see what, if any, deals are on offer. You'll probably find a body + standard kit lens + telephoto package from various retailers, just watch to see what telephoto they are offering. If it's occasional use and you aren't expecting a pin sharp picture of the cockpit at the top of a loop then you'll find 70-300mm ish will do you and is easy to carry and will be more than useful for that general photography too.

There are lots of online reviews for cameras and lenses, make use of them and always have a look at a couple at least. Opinions do vary on reviews.

For that budget you should do quite well, most photographers will tell you the lens is more important than the body for overall picture quality. However, I still find pictures from my first DSLR with the cheapest lens I could get for it which look just as good as some of the later ones I have taken with "better" kit.

If you narrow down your choice come back and ask further questions, it is way easier to answer specific points ;)

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Thu Jan 24, 2019 5:22 pm
by 633 squadron
there are bridge cameras thagt can do that, what bridge camera did you have?

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Thu Jan 24, 2019 5:44 pm
by Bobcode
Last year I was in the same situation as you, I bought a used Nikon D3200 with the 18-55mm vr lens, great for the money. I bought, again, used, a nikon 55-200 lens for aircraft shots. I used this at Honington Family day and was exceptionally pleased with the results, crisp, pin sharp shots of BBMF in flight, Red Arrows, I am no photographer but I was delighted with the results.
Total outlay was £85 for the camara and kit lens, and £65 for the 55-200 lens.
Good luck with whatever you choose......

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Thu Jan 24, 2019 6:06 pm
by TankBuster
The cameras which I currently use are a Nikon Coolpix L340, and a Canon SX170. Both cameras are good for portraits, close ups and landscapes. However, at long range and against fast moving objects the cameras clarity really deteriorates. My favourite of the two is the canon for its size and ease of use.

I have looked at the Nikon D3500 & D5300 DSLRs but, I am not sure about either, and these are by no means what I have decided upon. If there is a bridge camera out there with long range and a fast shutter speed then I think that'd be my preferred option.

Cheers,
TankBuster

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Thu Jan 24, 2019 9:37 pm
by Sled Driver
Hi TankBuster

Just recently got from John Lewis a Canon EOS200D DSLR Camera body with a 18-55mm lens & 75-300mm lens altogether in one box was £569.95. Got it few weeks back. It was on offer so the price maybe different now. I know it's slightly above your budget - but a suggestion at least.

Did some research online and for a first time DSLR kit all seemed to agree it was a good starting place. Me and the missus are all new to aviation photography. Used only previously a Canon PowerShot SX400 IS bridge camera. For video use a Sony Handycam HDR-CX625 with x60 zoom. The Handycam has been great for video. Used it on visits to Mach Loop, Lakenheath, Coningsby, Marham, Fairford. RIAT 2018 it was also a good performer. The bridge camera was limited on fast moving distant jets, statics were good though.

So far the Canon I'm finding easy to use. On aircraft at around 500ft (I guess) coming into land at Birmingham Airport, as I'm about 12miles out - images are very very sharp. I'm a real novice at all this but me and the missus are happy with the Canon! :)

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Fri Jan 25, 2019 8:50 am
by Andy_99
Repeating dollar99's advice best bet is to visit a retailer & have a play with what's available in the price range, what feels better in the hand, which menu logic do you prefer etc.
Also don't discount 2nd hand from one of the reputable retailers such as London Camera Exchange, MPB, Milfsuds etc. once you've found something you like see if they have anything 2nd hand in budget.
Yes the glass you stick on the front does make a difference but starting out I wouldn't worry too much, spending big bucks can come later (It did with me)

One thing I would say is try to get image stabilization on any zoom lens, it helps when trying to get shots in less than optimal light conditions.

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Fri Jan 25, 2019 6:04 pm
by TankBuster
One camera I've looked at was a Nikon Coolpix P900. Has anyone used, or able to give their thoughts on this model?

Cheers,
TankBuster

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Fri Jan 25, 2019 9:12 pm
by Bobcode
Post Removed

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Fri Jan 25, 2019 9:20 pm
by tommc
1. Don't dismiss 2nd hand kit.
2. Don't fixate on DSLR. That is 20th century tech and there are many other and better options now if you are starting from scratch on a budget.
3. Glass, glass, glass. The lens is king.
4. Do not ignore Image Stabilisation.
5. Get some hands-on time with the equipment.

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Sat Jan 26, 2019 10:47 am
by sft
From what you have said, I think you would be far better choosing a good bridge camera. I have a number of DSLRs, both full frame and digital, but I really only use them for those dedicated trips to airfields. The rest of the time, like out walking, visiting places, holidays etc, I reach for a bridge camera. They are also my preference for shots inside an aircraft and at dodgy airports around the world where I dont want to draw too much attention to myself! Less weight to lug around, no lenses to change and still very capable. Some are like DSLRs and some are inferior. You must get one that has an extra zoom control on the side of lens - so you can adjust the zoom with your left hand whilst getting ready to shoot with your right hand (like a DSLR). The features on these premium bridge cameras are very similar to a DSLR, plus it will do excellent video. My suggested camera is a Lumix - the fz150/fz200/fz1000 range (oldest version first). Check online for reviews (like dpreview.com) and ebay for prices - even a secondhand 1000 will be within your price range. Very few of the early models available, which tells you they are good - I am certainly not selling or replacing mine until it packs in!

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Sun Jan 27, 2019 10:54 am
by John flightpath
Like sft I use a bridge camera. Again lightweight, good for trips out that are non aviation related, also good for museum shots and outdoor static. I won't get rid of it, however I don't rate bridge cameras for fast jets, they take too long to adjust and particularly if you are side on to a fast jet it is very 'hit and miss'. I use a Canon dslr with various zoom lenses for fast moving stuff. If you go the dslr route, make sure you get a decent zoom lens. Check out Sigma and Tamron to avoid making your eyes water at the prices of the Nikon or Canon 'top enders'
Cheers
John 'flightpath'.

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Sun Jan 27, 2019 12:00 pm
by tommc
Just some examples from a so-called "bridge" camera.

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Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Sun Jan 27, 2019 12:34 pm
by tm74sqn
They look as good as the ones I take with my cheap DSLR. What bridge camera were they taken with?
Cheers, tM74

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Sun Jan 27, 2019 1:29 pm
by tommc
tm74sqn wrote:
Sun Jan 27, 2019 12:34 pm
They look as good as the ones I take with my cheap DSLR. What bridge camera were they taken with?
Cheers, tM74
Sony RX10Mk3, 24-600mm

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Sun Jan 27, 2019 7:45 pm
by tm74sqn
Many thanks for the info - must investigate further!
Regards, TM74

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Mon Jan 28, 2019 10:32 pm
by Alfie
I've always found a small local photography shop may be your best call. You will probably find the owner is a keen photography him or her self and can point you in the right direction and give you lots of advice and encouragement.

Re: Budget DSLR For Novice?

Posted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 2:01 pm
by Tiger 1
Hi everyone

I currently use a Panasonic Lumix FZ330 bridge camera... had very nice results with it... but I agree with John flightpath... when it comes to side on shots it gets a bit harder to get that nice quality shot...

tommc... hats off to you sir... they are superb photo's with the Sony bridge... if I could get them with the FZ330 I would be very happy.

T1