Topic Author
Posts: 7
Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2008 9:23 pm

Equipment Advice Needed

Fri Aug 01, 2008 3:30 am

Good day. I was wondering if I might be able to get some equipment advice from you fine folks. I am fairly new into aviation photography, or any photography for that matter. I am trying to decide whether I would be better off with a simple P&S such as the Canon S5 IS, or if I would be better off going with the Canon EOS 450D XSi 12.1mp DSLR that comes with an EF-S 18-55mm lens? I'm not too sure what kind of zoom that lens would give me though. I was also looking at the XSi package which inluded the above lens plus a Canon EF 75-300mm lens as well, which might be better for shooting aircraft.
I'm not too sure if the Nkon D40 or D60 would be worth really looking into, from what I understand the Canons are much better, especially for aviation.
Again, any help is much appreciated!!
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Joined: Tue May 31, 2005 5:17 pm

RE: Equipment Advice Needed

Fri Aug 01, 2008 10:07 am

Quoting Gw105 (Thread starter):
from what I understand the Canons are much better, especially for aviation.

Not true. Both Nikon and Canon produce highest-quality equipment, the choice is largely a matter of personal preference.

Quoting Gw105 (Thread starter):
simple P&S such as the Canon S5 IS

This camera is not a simple P&S, it is highly sophisticated and can produce great results. If you want a P&S, the best available is probably the Canon G9.

Generally speaking, a DSLR is more versatile than a P&S, because of the possibility to change lenses. However, you need to know the basics of photography to fully exploit it - or indeed any camera. Shooting in Programme or Auto mode will generally not produce outstanding results.

To successfully upload here, you will also need some proficiency in post-processing (levelling, cropping, sharpening), using one of the several programmes on the market, such as Photoshop.

Finally, if you decide to buy a DSLR, buy a basic body and the best lenses you can afford - most of your budget should be spent on lenses rather than the camera body.
Nikon D700, Nikkor 80-400, Fuji X Pro 1, Fujinon 35 f/1.4, Fujinon 18 f/2
Posts: 4722
Joined: Thu Jun 30, 2005 3:30 am

RE: Equipment Advice Needed

Fri Aug 01, 2008 10:11 am

The Canon P&S will do you but you have to ask yourself, "How serious am I and how far ahead do I want to look?".

Buying a good P&S only to discover its limitations and subsequently wanting to upgrade to a DSLR is a pointless exercise - you may as well just plump for a DSLR from the outset. On the other hand, spending all that money on a DSLR only to find this hobby isn't for you will make you wish you had bought a P&S in the first place.

If you do decide on a DSLR, here's my advice.....

Quoting Gw105 (Thread starter):
from what I understand the Canons are much better, especially for aviation.

Firstly, I'm a Canon shooter, and they seem to work best for me. But it's common knowledge that there's virtually nothing in it between the two manufacturers - they both excel in certain fields and both have their pros and cons. What I can say for sure is that the Canons have always had the reputation of handling noise (grain in old 35mm terms) slightly better than the Nikons, and at high ISOs this is noticeable. Having said that, it's generally accepted that Nikons are of a slightly better build quality than the Canons. One thing I particularly like about Canon is the immense choice of lenses available, catering for every taste and budget.

The 450D is without doubt the natural choice when compared to the budget Nikons (i.e. D40, D50 and D60). In fact, it may be worth grabbing a cheap(er) 400D and investing what you save in some decent lenses. I'd personally buy body only, as the 18-55 (for me) lacks range and quality. I use a twin lens combo at the moment - Canon EF28-105 F3.5-4.5 USM II and EF70-200 F4 L - both unfortunately not cheap lenses, however the skill of the photographer is usually what makes a picture.

The Canon EF75-300 F4-5.6 USM III is a good beginners' choice; it's cheap and can, if used properly, produce some great images, although it gets very soft above about 230mm.

Hope this helps.

Topic Author
Posts: 7
Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2008 9:23 pm

RE: Equipment Advice Needed

Sat Aug 02, 2008 12:58 am

Thanks for your replies. I am leaning towards sticking with one of the P&S models such as the Canon S5 IS or the G9 for now. I wan't to learn more with a P&S before I decide to advance into DSLR. Viv you mentioned the G9, the only thing that is really pushing me towards the S5 IS is the extended zoom (and the price!) Would the 6X zoom on the G9 be sufficient for aviation photography?

Thanks again.
Topic Author
Posts: 7
Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2008 9:23 pm

RE: Equipment Advice Needed

Sat Aug 02, 2008 1:01 am

On another note, is there a good website to learn more about basic photography, especially aviation specific?

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