Camera recommendations...

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by james1, May 2, 2011.

  1. james1

    james1 Adventurer

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    I`m in the market for a new camera, and was wondering what you guys use to take your pictures?

    Some of the pictures posted on here look like they were taken by high-end cameras.

    Ideally one that takes 1080p video as well as high end/quality pictures.

    What do you use, any recommendations?

    Btw, I already ordered a GoPro Hero, havent tested it out yet.

    Forgot to mention. Budget for this is $500 or lower.
    #1
  2. LakesRider

    LakesRider Been here awhile

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    Cameras don't take good pictures. People do.

    However, some cameras are better tools than others.

    I think a good site to narrow the search would be DPreview. Lots of good info there.

    I have an Olympus DSLR. Been an Olympus guy since about '78. Great compact DSLR's with really good lenses. Figure out what features are important to you. Dpreview has a "search by feature function" too.
    #2
    Jim K. likes this.
  3. K1W1

    K1W1 Long timer Supporter

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    The Motorsport kit is great for use on bikes. Team that with a RAM mount and a couple of RAM mounting balls strategically places around the bike and you are in business.

    As far as a camera is concerned it's 2011. There is no such thing as a bad camera there are only bad photographers. People are doing amazing things with iPhones and people are doing rotten things with high end DSLRs so what you need to do is work out several things;

    How much will you really use the camera? (Be truthful is this a toy for snapshots or a hobby that you are passionate about?)

    How much money and space are you prepared to spend and allocate? (My whole Givi V46 top box can be full of around $8k worth of camera and lenses on some rides, on other rides I have my iPhone in my pocket)

    How much time do you want to allocate to taking photos on a ride? Do you want to stop, take a shot and be gone in 30 seconds or do you want to spend 30 minutes setting up one shot?

    Once you start working out the answers that suit you you will be heading in a particular path and that should be fairly obvious to you. You can then ask more detailled questions about specific types or brands of cameras.
    #3
  4. Rashnak

    Rashnak Lorem Ipsum

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    my dream camera for a bike is the lumix gh2- good compromise in pic quality + video, and size/weight/price consideraion too

    I'd suggest you first pick a price point, then hit dpreview
    #4
  5. Odiegreen73

    Odiegreen73 Marginal Adventurer

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    I have been a huge fan of the Olympus Stylus tough series of cameras. I have a Stylus Tough 8000 that is water proof, drop proof and crush resistant.

    About a week ago I was out Kayaking with my lil' brother and we found a Stylus Tough 6020 that have been in a running stream for about a week. We hit the power button and it fired right up. Took about 3 pictures before the battery died. After I got it home and cleaned it up was able to charge it with my Olympus charger it works great and other than a few scrapes where it was banged off the rocks it work fine.

    http://www.olympusamerica.com/cpg_section/product.asp?product=1496
    #5
  6. douglasgraham

    douglasgraham This is my car

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    The GoPro is "top of the heap" for onboard video. It is waterproof, it is dust and mud proof. Weakness would be no play back, no view window so you have to guess at where to point it. Its pretty wide angle so not a huge deal. At 1080 P its sharp as a tack. The mounts are fine but it does not have a tripod screw type mount. It come with a helmet strap that does not work with a motorcycle helmet. The other mount comes with stickies that work fine unless its raining.

    Still cameras do make a difference and if you go low end the chip will only give good results in good light. If you do any low light shooting you will get digital noise at higher ISO's. So get the best body and lens that your wallet will allow.
    #6
  7. perterra

    perterra -. --- .--. .

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    What do you want in a camera?

    I bought a XTi back a few years ago, it's a fine camera but I never use it because of the bulk. I bought an S-90 and consider the Canon S 90 (now S-95) to be one of the best photo taking machines out there.
    #7
  8. joel_yyc

    joel_yyc n00b

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    +1 for the Canon S95.

    Takes great photos. I have a Canon 50D DSLR for most tasks, but when I need something portable the S95 is my camera. I have made many 8x10 and greater enlargements with great results. HD video also!
    #8
  9. Base Camp

    Base Camp I gotta buy a vowel

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    I have to agree... the Canon S90 which I use... now the S95 is a GREAT small camera!
    #9
  10. Perp

    Perp Museum Piece

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    Agree on the above. Would add the Canon G-11.
    #10
  11. forrestlaw

    forrestlaw Been here awhile

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    check out kenrockwell.com

    Has lots of camera reviews as well as tons of articles on how to take good pictures.
    #11
  12. bump

    bump COLOR ME GONE

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    If you are looking at a Pro DSLR that has real HD video you are a little early because it's not quite here yet.

    If you are looking for a budget prosumer DLSR then I highly recommend a Nikon D200. They can be had for a song and are a very warm camera which makes for better outdoor on-the-run photography IMHO.

    There's a guy on here from Chicago who is a pro photographer and he takes one of the previous mentioned Panasonic Lumix cameras with him and his photographs are outstanding. There are several other guys on here taking great photographs and when asked they've been using a Lumix as well.

    A mix of other advice already here might be good. Ken Rockwell is a Nikon guy BTW. And he's a bit controversial. Essentially he likes to put everything into a nutshell and that's is often counterproductive. He does have some good lens reviews and some good pages on composition and so forth.

    I'd suggest you determine a budget first.
    There's not a lot of good sense in getting a great DSLR and then not getting a great lens. So remember at this level you are buying a system. That adds up to some real money, bulk and weight though. Great Nikon Lenses are usually in the $2K range and getting more everyday because of the dollar.
    As Rockwell likes to point out, Ansel Adams initially used some wood, some glass, some leather and some chemicals and no one had improved on that yet.
    Consider one of Nikon's VR lenses. They mean you don't need a tripod. The VR refers to the shaking of the camera not the subject.

    I'd say you should get the top of the line in a category that won't stress your budget be that new or used. Then spend a little more and get a few books and perhaps a DVD or two. Try to take a photograph or two everyday. Break some rules or reverse them. Use flash outdoors and not indoors for example.

    Nikon is better than Canon in the real world and that is particularly important if you are taking this camera on trips, like NASA and Hollywood does...

    Good luck.
    #12
  13. GSWayne

    GSWayne Old Guy nOOb Supporter

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    I used the Pentax waterproof point and shoots W20 and later a WS80 and though they are small rugged and handy, they had terrible optical (particularly low light) performance. I did lots of searching for higher performance point and shoot cameras and ended up with a Panasonic LX-5, that I am happy with. It does 720P HD video at impressively low light levels. It has many of the manual control capabilities of the DSLR cameras and it is still small enough for a jacket pocket. There are several close competitors similar to this like the Canon Powershot S95 and the Samsung TL500.
    #13
  14. Grainbelt

    Grainbelt marginal adventurer Super Moderator

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    I suggest you go to a good camera shop (not best buy, a camera only place) and spend some time talking to somebody and playing with:

    High-end compacts
    Mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras (micro 4/3, et al)
    Digital SLRs

    Get an idea what size and price point you're comfortable with and go from there. Lots of good options out there.
    #14
  15. Callahan

    Callahan Long timer

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    Pentax W90
    #15
  16. Sailorlite

    Sailorlite Long timer Supporter

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    Nikon's new P300 - f1.8 and 24mm wide!
    #16
  17. TriplePete

    TriplePete Been here awhile

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    http://www.dpreview.com/

    Personally I dont like video on DSLR camera's. So I if you want a point and shoot - I prefer the Panasonic Lumix camera's - lots and lots of choices. I have a Canon 5D Mk.1, Nikon D80, Lumix LX3, and Lumix TS2. For m/c travel, the LX3 is excellent, no HD video though. The Lumix is 720P and weather proof.

    So it just depends on what you wanna do with it.
    #17
  18. TwoShots

    TwoShots Vagabond

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  19. doublen

    doublen Been here awhile

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    The DSLR cameras are amazing. But to get quality pictures out of them requires the knowledge and god-given talent of a professional. Not saying they aren't worth the coin, but a good point n' shoot camera with a good optical lens will serve you just fine. I have a Fuji point n' shoot with a 10x lens and I have taken some world class pictures with that thing. It's only 5mp but that just means I can have it on the highest setting and get a ton of pictures on the memory card. :D

    I also have a Canon point n' shoot with a 5x lens and it takes some great shots too.

    Here's a link to my "Portfolio" Most of the shots were taken with the Canon since it's the slimmest and fits in a tank bag pocket easily. The ones of the Beagle were taken with the Fuji.

    http://silentreflections.shutterfly.com/pictures
    #19
  20. Srowlandson

    Srowlandson BMW F650GS Dakar

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    Personally, I'd shoot with my iPhone, unless I went on a Ride to be specifically a Photography ride, in which case, I may pack some flashes, the DSLR (in my case an old school 20D) some lenses and a mini tripod.

    I am thinking of G12 as a P&S camera with some ability to do the creative stuff, like fire my 3 flashes remotely using pocket wizard etc. Much lighter / smaller/ cheaper for trips.

    The Most important part of any camera is the operator ;) :deal

    Anyone that says XYZ brand is the best, is sucked in to Marketing, Most cameras in each segment are close in features etc and most have features that make them 'better' than the others for specific people.
    #20