What kind of digital camera to get

Discussion in 'Basic' started by TimEwers, Oct 29, 2010.

  1. TimEwers

    TimEwers Member

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    for takeing pictures of models. I dont have a lot of money to spend so two three hundred dollor rigs are out of the question and I really dont want to get that involed with it anyway, just want to take picts of my models with it.

    But I know nothing about digital cameras so any help would be apreciateted.
     
  2. ccheese

    ccheese Member In Perpetuity
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    Wurger [Wojtek] uses a Nikon "Coolpix". Does a good job, even closeup. Was under $200.00 [usd].

    Evangilder uses a Nikon D80. Costs over $1,000.00 [usd].

    Charles
     
  3. JohnAnthony

    JohnAnthony Member

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    Yup, I use a coolpix. Has a nice close-up feature, 12 megapixels is more than enough resolution. Great camera for cheap.
     
  4. Aaron Brooks Wolters

    Aaron Brooks Wolters Well-Known Member

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    Tim, if all you want to do is take shots of your models you really don't need to spend a lot of money. If you go to Wal-Mart, Target, Best Buy, or any place like that you can usually find a good camera for $100.00 or less. Four Megapixels will probably be all you need and the small processors in these cameras are excellent for what you want to do with it. Just go out and shop around and compare. And when you start taking photos be mindful of the minimum focus distance of the camera. If you get to close the photo will be blurred because the camera can't focus on it. Hope this helps.
     
  5. RabidAlien

    RabidAlien Active Member

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    Stick with a good name, you'll get better optics. Canon, Nikon, Kodak all use good glass optics, some of the others skimp on their lower-priced cameras and throw plastic lenses in instead, which means you won't get quite as clear/crisp a photo. My wife and I both have digital SLR's (Nikon and Canon, respectively) and a Canon point-n-shoot...for everyday around-the-house shooting, the point-n-shoot does just as good a job as the more expensive SLR's. Just play around with the macro settings in the store, see which one has a closer focal range, or a more comfortable focal range for what you want to shoot. Ultimately, we all have our favorites, but its you that's going to be using the camera. What may feel good in my wife's hands may not feel as comfortable in your hands (honestly...I always feel like I'm gonna drop our little Canon! Still takes good pics, but....).
     
  6. diddyriddick

    diddyriddick Active Member

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    Canon A1100IS

    12.1 Megapixels which will produce enough resolution to print Fathead posters.

    4x optical zoom which will probably do anything you want except maybe sporting events or wildlife.

    Macro for your modeling work.

    Optical Image stabilization so you can even get stable images even after a pot of coffee.

    A very large 2.5" LCD so even with bad eyes, you can see the screen.

    Uses AA batteries....Best of both worlds. You can get rechargeables cheap, but you can also use alkaline AAs from Mable's Drug Store if you lose or kill your rechargeables.

    And the price is right at $150.

    In 10 years selling cameras, Canon consistently had the lowest return rates of all point and shoot vendors. They simply don't break.

    Canon U.S.A. : Consumer Home Office : PowerShot A1100 IS
     
  7. evangilder

    evangilder "Shooter"
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    Let me throw in some things:

    Megapixels are not always a measure of a good camera. That just gives you the number of "dots" that make up each photo. Film resolution is about 10.2 megapixels, so anything above that is going to be very dense, but not necessarily better.

    Optical zoom versus digital zoom. In this one, it's an easy decision. Optical zoom will almost always be better. Digital zoom will get you in closer, but more pixellated (jaggy).

    Lenses will make the biggest difference for your photos. You could have the best sensor in the most advanced camera body in the world. But if you throw a cheap piece of glass in front of it, you are still going to get crappy photos. I take crystal clear photos with both my 6 megapixel and my 10 megapixel cameras and until you blow them up really big, you can't tell the difference between the 2 cameras.

    When looking at point and shoot cameras, check for a good quality lens. I have a Canon Powershot S50 that I bought many years ago that still takes amazing photos (5 megapixels). Going with a good known brand name will get you a better chance of getting a good producer.

    One place to research is DP Review. They have buying guides, reviews, previews and user comments.
    Digital Cameras: Digital Photography Review, News, Reviews, Forums, FAQ
     
  8. ccheese

    ccheese Member In Perpetuity
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    #8 ccheese, Oct 31, 2010
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2010
    Good Advise, Eric. To be respected as a professional photographer says it all.

    Charles
     
  9. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    I totally agree with Eric. Alsp, something to consider, is what you might want to do in the future. At the moment, you only want a camera for taking photos of models, so the macro, and possibly 'super macro' features are needed. Image stabilisation is a good advantage, especially for the close-in, short depth of field you'll be using for models, as is the ability to control and set 'white balance'.
    But, it may be that at some time in the future, you might want to take other pics - landscapes, portrait, sporting events etc, so it's worth looking at the next stage from a 'point and shoot' which could be worthwhile. These are sometimes know as 'bridge' camera', or 'hybrids', and are in between a full DSLR, and the compact 'point and shoot', and sre priced around about the same as the mid to higher range compacts, and a lot, lot less than a true DSLR.
    I was trained as a professional photographer, and worked in 'the trade', for a major photographic manufacturer, finishing in the graphics photography market. Until a little under 2 years ago, I was still using traditional, professionl SLR cameras, but now have a 'bridge' digital camera, which fulfills about 95% of the tasks asked of the professional outfit I still have.
    There are a number around, mine being a Fuji S1000 fd, the latest version of which is priced at around £150 in the UK, slightly less in the USA. This camera has a zoom lens covering the equivalent of 18mm to 400mm, with excellent optics, and a full range of features normally associated with an expensive, top range DSLR, and is a superb tool, conveniently placed between compact and DSLR.
     
  10. LA2019

    LA2019 Member

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    All great suggestions here but I'd like to throw in two piece of free advise.

    No.1; tripod. I don't care what type of camera you eventually buy; you are going to need a solid foundation to take quality macro/close-up shots. Sure, you can hand hold the camera (and you'll get ok shots) but at the close distances you'll be working at your depth of field will be next to nothing. Which means small apature (for more DOF) which means slower shutter speed, which means camera shake. You may also want to look at higher end P/S with a hot shoe attachment for an external flash for better control of your light. Which leads me into my second piece of free advise...

    No. 2; a light box. It made the biggest difference in my macro photography. And the best part is that it is dirt cheap to make. I built mine out of an old box, some tissue paper some light soure(s) (I bought three 250w hologen lamps from Lowes for $10 each).

    The light box and tripod are a combination that will maximize the quality of any camera you buy. Just my two cents....

    Here is the light box I built....


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  11. RabidAlien

    RabidAlien Active Member

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    Dang. That's a pretty sweet lightbox you've got there! Ever consider posting it on Instructables? Here are a few other lightbox setups folks have made there: Search Instructables

    LA, have you considered some sort of spacer between the box and the lights, to ensure that the lights are equal distances away from the sides of the box, thereby giving you the best chance of even illumination on all sides? I dunno if you've already marked off the distances, but it might be something to consider.

    (disclaimers: after ww2aircraft.net, Instructables is one of my favorite websites. I've even built a thing or two from there! Secondly...I do NOT in any way work for Instructables.com. Its just a very handy site to have bookmarked.)
     
  12. Ivan1GFP

    Ivan1GFP Member

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    #12 Ivan1GFP, Nov 1, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2010
    If the intended purpose of the camera is for models, toys, and such, be sure that you can focus down close enough. (I know someone already said this.) The camera I use for everything is a Canon S5IS. It has a super macro that can take a picture of something just about touching the lens. Get a TINY tripod. I got a bendable one for $1.00 and it is only about 5 inches long, but it stays in my camera bag. To avoid shake with long shutter times needed for small aperture (High F-Stop), I set the camera to have a 2 second timer delay. I push the button and it starts the shot without me messing with it. If the shutter is open for 4 seconds or so, it's 4 seconds without my hand affecting anything.

    - Ivan.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

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    [​IMG]
     
  13. Lucke.stz

    Lucke.stz Member

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    I have a Nikon P-90 and I can make good pics with it. Take a look at the pics on my blog.
     
  14. Ivan1GFP

    Ivan1GFP Member

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    Can you post a couple links?

    - Ivan.
     
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