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Nath Kaplan 1 How to buy a Digital SLR Nath Kaplan, May 14, 2007.

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Presentation on theme: "Nath Kaplan 1 How to buy a Digital SLR Nath Kaplan, May 14, 2007."— Presentation transcript:

1 Nath Kaplan 1 How to buy a Digital SLR Nath Kaplan, May 14, 2007

2 Nath Kaplan 2 What is an SLR? SLR - Single Lens Reflex "SLR" means that the same lens is used for viewing and taking pictures. A mirror in the body directs the light from the lens up into a prism for viewing, then flips up out of the way just before an exposure is made.

3 Nath Kaplan 3 Pros and Cons of a DSLR Pros Greater lens versatility Almost always better image quality Better performance Greater flexibility Cons Bigger and heavier More complex Higher price Can not use the LCD for framing (This is changing)

4 Nath Kaplan 4 What type of photography do you do? The type of photography will suggest what functions you need. Action (Sports) photography will need a faster camera. Macro photography will require mirror lockup.

5 Nath Kaplan 5 How much do you want to spend on the camera? Set a budget for the camera Keep in mind you will need some accessories Consider the following: How long do you plan on keeping the camera? Is this an intro camera or the camera you will keep for ever?

6 Nath Kaplan 6 Do you have lenses from other cameras? Some older lenses may work on the newer cameras. If you have lenses find out if they will work on any of the newer DSLR cameras. If they do, you may want to stick with that brand camera.

7 Nath Kaplan 7 Key Camera Points Functions What pre-programmed functions does the camera have Sensor Type CCD (Charge Coupled device) or CMOS (Complementary Metal-Oxide Semiconductor It is reported that the CCD creates a better image, but it cost more and uses more power. The CMOS is lower cost, uses less power and is found in larger cameras. General rule is look at the photos not the sensors Size Full Frame - This sensor is the same size as 35mm film 24x36mm APS – Smaller sensors 22.5x15mm (This is the most common sensor) Magnification – The smaller sensor causes a magnification. 1.5 (Nikon), 1.6 (Canon) A 50mm lens would equal 70 to 80mm

8 Nath Kaplan 8 Camera Sensors

9 Nath Kaplan 9 Key Camera Points Speed of the camera How many frames per second can the camera shoot. Canon 30D can do 3 to 5 frames per second. Mirror Lockup Mirror lockup enables you to lift the mirror before you take the photo. This will decrease camera movement. This function is helpful in macro photography. Focus Points DSLRs enable you to select where you focus. The number of focus points vary from as low as 3 to as high as 45. The Nikon D40 has 3, the Canon 30d has 9 in a diamond shape. The new Canon Mark III has 45. Flash Not all DSLRs come with a built-in flash. The Pro DSLRs do not have a built-in. TTL (Through the Lens), the flash is metered through the lens for better proper flash settings.

10 Nath Kaplan 10 Key Camera Points Dust on the senor The senor has a process to remove dust. ( This is just starting to be seen on cameras.) Image Stabilizer / Anti-shake (This is just starting to be seen on cameras.) Some cameras now offer this function LCD size 2 ½ to 3 inches Live view via the LCD (Very few cameras offer this.) Photo file types RAW, JPEG, RAW & JPEG, TIFF, DNG ISO Settings Look at the high and the low (100 or 200 for low, 1600 to 3200 for the high) What point is missing?

11 Nath Kaplan 11 Key Camera Points Size and feel of the camera Sizes and operations for DSLR vary. You want to pick up the cameras and see how they feel. Check the menus and functions. Try to do some functions. Look at what the camera is made out of The lower end cameras are made of plastic. The more expensive cameras are made of metal or metal-polycarbonate

12 Nath Kaplan 12 Lenses (AKA: Glass) Quality There are different quality lenses. You should try to get the best lens you can. This may mean passing on some of the camera kits. Auto Focus Type Ultrasound Motor (Found in the better lenses) Auto Focus motor in the lens (Nikon D40: no motor in the camera, AF-S lens have auto focus motor in lens) DSLR Lenses Lenses designed exclusively for the DSLR camera with the smaller sensor. If used on a film camera or a full frame sensor you will see darkening around the edges. Image Stabilizer / Anti-shake Image stabilized lenses cost more They are not needed if the camera has IS Aperture The widest aperture will vary by lenses. ( f 4 to 5.6, the most common) Lenses with 2.8 or bigger are more expensive and considered Fast Lenses 50 mm is what the human eye sees 10 or 12 mm is considered a wide angle lens

13 Nath Kaplan 13 Lenses Quality of lens There are all different qualities of lenses. The better the lens the more costly it is Third Party lenses tend to be cheaper than the Canon and Nikon lenses. Lens kits with the camera Many cameras come with lens kits. These lenses tend to be a lower end lens. Crop factor / Magnification Lens Hoods

14 Nath Kaplan 14 Buying the camera Camera Reviews (, Camera Life Cycle Most cameras are replaced every 18 to 24 months. Watch for rebates Go to a store and pick up and hold the camera Buy from trusted dealers If the price is too good to be true, run away

15 Nath Kaplan 15 Accessories Memory Cards ($50 to $100) Extra Batteries ($50 to $70) Tripod & Head (Tripod $100 to $500, Head $60 to $400) Cable Release (Cable or wireless) ($40 to $100) Filters (Cir-Polarizing) ($50 to $100) Flash ($50 to $600) Camera bag ($30 to $200) Books and DVD Total cost of accessories could run between $400 to $1800

16 Nath Kaplan 16 Computer Accessories Software (Next meeting topic, Fall 2007) Computer Hard drive and memory DVD drive Printer Books and DVDs

17 Nath Kaplan 17 General Information Canon and Nikon are the top makers of DSLR Cameras. Canons Digital Rebel is the top selling DSLR camera in the US. The Nikon D40 and D40x are the smallest DSLR camera on the market. Sony, Pentax, Samsung have moved into the DSLR market. Sony purchased the Konica / Minolta camera line so many of the Konica / Minolta lenses will work on the Sony DSLR. Complete D-SLR System Guide Watch out for the model numbers on the camera. Nikon d40 and d40x (one is 6MP, one is 10.2 MP) Canon Rebel XT and Rebel XTI (one is 8MP, one is 10.1 MP)

18 Nath Kaplan 18 Learning the Camera Manual A must read. Many people carry the manual in their camera bag. Books Some third party books are helpful. DVDs These are wonderful for people who need to see and hear.

19 Nath Kaplan 19 Photo Tip - Lighting Backlighting backlight can add drama to an image backlit images can show the delicacy of a subject (think transparent or translucent things like flowers or insects) backlight can help create real mode in a shot backlit images can highlight details on the edges of subjects backlight can reveal textures that might previously have been hidden backlit images can show off the shape and form of a subject backlight can create shadows that add points of interest to an image (

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