Moderators: richierich, ua900, PanAm_DC10, hOMSaR

 
JohnJ
Topic Author
Posts: 1383
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2000 5:01 am

Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Mon Jun 15, 2009 2:06 am

I'm still plugging along with my 2003-vintage Canon 300D and overall I remain happy with it; it's still more than capable of capturing Airliners.net-worthy shots. 99% of my shots here were taken with that camera. However, after a recent photo sale I've come to tinker with the idea of getting a new camera, and since the T1i is Canon's most recent camera that's comparable to the 300D, I just might bite the bullet. After six years of shooting with the 300D, there aren't any missing features that I feel I must have, so I don't feel a need to upgrade the set substantially. The T1i rectifies the 300D's biggest shortcomings, the 4-shot buffer in RAW and forced use of evaluative metering in all modes but manual. The extra megapixels will certainly be a luxury after dealing with 6MP all these years, and video capability is icing on the cake.

My lenses are Canon and I've grown accustomed to and fond of the Canon controls, so I'm not considering Nikon. Otherwise, any concerns anyone would have in getting the T1i/500D?

Oh - one last question: from a quick search it appears Best Buy has the best deal on this camera at $849 for the kit. B&H sells the body only for $799.95, but since the old 300D will go to my son I'd like to have a lens to give him, too, as I'd like to keep the 18-55. Anyone know of any reputable vendor who can do better?

Thanks!

John
 
User avatar
dvincent
Posts: 1592
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2007 9:53 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Mon Jun 15, 2009 2:09 am

John,

Have you considered a closeout 40D? Amazon/Adorama's got em brand new for $849 body only... If you don't care about videos it'll be a huge upgrade for you.

Unfortunately none of the 40D kits come with the 18-55, only more expensive lenses like the 28-135 or 17-85. However, you can always pick up cheap second hand EOS lenses to put on the old Rebel...

[Edited 2009-06-14 19:14:18]
From the Mind of Minolta
 
chase
Posts: 658
Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2005 11:02 pm

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Mon Jun 15, 2009 3:07 am

Dell sometimes has good sales on DSLRs...but the T1i is currently $899 there. If you're still on the fence in a week or two, though, it might not hurt to give them a look at that time.
 
JohnJ
Topic Author
Posts: 1383
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2000 5:01 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Mon Jun 15, 2009 4:13 am



Quoting Dvincent (Reply 1):
Have you considered a closeout 40D? Amazon/Adorama's got em brand new for $849 body only... If you don't care about videos it'll be a huge upgrade for you.

Haven't considered, it, Dan - interesting thought, though. The 40D is an advanced camera, but what would be the benefit for me? I have simple needs (again, the 300D had few shortcomings in my eyes) and with this in mind the T1i's 15 megapixels vs. the 40D's 10.1 seems like taking a big step backward. In fact, my "new camera threshold" has always been 12 megapixels - I remember reading somewhere that 12 megapixels was "media quality" and I vowed I'd get a new camera once consumer-grade DSLRs got there.

I dunno. I just think I'd rather have the higher resolution vs. buying a lot of gizmos I'd probably never use. And the video is a selling point with my wife. I always carry my camera, but on family trips it's a hassle to carry the video camera, too. It would be nice if it were all in a nice tidy package.
 
Silver1SWA
Posts: 4761
Joined: Wed Mar 10, 2004 6:11 pm

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Mon Jun 15, 2009 4:55 am

John,

If you are going to pay $800 on an upgrade, seriously go for the 40D! I just upgraded from the 400D to the 40D and I super happy! Don't spend so much thought on megapixels. While the 40D only has 10.1MP, some have argued that the image quality is slightly better than the 15MP 50D. I have read in other forums folks talking about how they got rid of their 40D to upgrade to the 50D and are now looking for a new 40D!

If the prices are no different and you can make the jump to the next level camera body, why not?

Quoting JohnJ (Reply 3):
The 40D is an advanced camera, but what would be the benefit for me?

Just a few things that I like...
6.5 FPS - This was the biggest gain for me! Twice as fast as my 3 FPS 400D...
Spot metering
Better at higher ISOs
Larger body, feels very comfortable.
Scroll wheel...a great feature that is a must-have once you try it!

I believe the 40D has recently been discontinued so finding a new copy will become more difficult. Grab one while you can!

[Edited 2009-06-14 22:02:33]
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
User avatar
dvincent
Posts: 1592
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2007 9:53 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Mon Jun 15, 2009 4:56 am



Quoting JohnJ (Reply 3):
Haven't considered, it, Dan - interesting thought, though. The 40D is an advanced camera, but what would be the benefit for me? I have simple needs (again, the 300D had few shortcomings in my eyes) and with this in mind the T1i's 15 megapixels vs. the 40D's 10.1 seems like taking a big step backward. In fact, my "new camera threshold" has always been 12 megapixels - I remember reading somewhere that 12 megapixels was "media quality" and I vowed I'd get a new camera once consumer-grade DSLRs got there.

Less megapixels is better in this case, as the 500D/50D pay an image quality penalty for their overstuffing of pixels, especially as the ISO climbs. It's not especially bad, I suppose, but you would actually get cleaner results from the 40D in most cases, because Canon has to apply more aggressive noise reduction to compensate for the higher MP count.

The 40D is something you buy because it's made out of magnesium, shoots at 6 FPS, and has a buffer that lasts for several seconds of burst. The viewfinder is also bigger, brighter, etc. For a Canon user, the control is better too (having two wheels is a godsend for manual exposure on any system). The only downside is that the T1i has an excellent 640x480 screen which the 40D lacks. The AF module is also more advanced than the Rebel as well, better for tracking moving subjects like airplanes.

I only offered it as a suggestion because it's the next level of camera and can be had fairly cheaply (relatively speaking). I for one don't regret moving up to the semipro range of bodies, the AF and buffering improvements make getting keepers that much easier.
From the Mind of Minolta
 
SNATH
Posts: 3049
Joined: Mon Mar 29, 2004 5:23 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Mon Jun 15, 2009 12:03 pm

John,

Hi. Excellent replies so far. And, Dan, are you sure you're not secretly considering a move to Canon?  Wink

Like Silver1SWA, I "moved" from a 400D to a 40D ("moved" is not quite right here; I do use both bodies, but the 40D is my prime one). The difference between them is, in many ways, night and day. One of the biggest things I like about the 40D is that it's bigger and it has a much better grip than the Rebel series. So, even with a heavier lens on it and the 580EX II flash on top, I can still hold it quite comfortably (whereas I'd seriously struggle with the 400D). If you're happy with the 300D's 6Mp, you'll be delighted with the 40D's 10Mp (if anything else, it'd allow you to crop tighter and still retain reasonable quality). I also love the larger and brighter viewfinder, especially recently as I've been manually focusing my newly-acquired Lensbaby. And, as Dan said, the 6fps can be often useful. I am confident that, if you shoot with a 40D for a few days, you'll find it hard to go back to the Rebels (I did!).

If you want to save a bit of money, another camera to also consider is actually the XSi. Given that the T1i is now out, the XSi body is only around $615, which is a great price for it. Keep in mind though that both the XSi and the T1i take SD cards, whereas the 40D takes CF cards. So, if you're heavily invested in CF cards, you won't have to buy new ones if you get the 40D (having said that, the higher Mp count might force you to get larger cards anyway).

But, of course, if you definitely want video, all the arguments above are mute and T1i is your only choice.  Smile

Anyway, good luck in your decision and happy shooting!

Tony
Nikon: we don't want more pixels, we want better pixels.
 
User avatar
dvincent
Posts: 1592
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2007 9:53 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Mon Jun 15, 2009 1:29 pm



Quoting SNATH (Reply 6):
Hi. Excellent replies so far. And, Dan, are you sure you're not secretly considering a move to Canon?  

Tony,

I'd only use a Canon if you paid me to.  Wink

The closeout XSi is also another great option if you don't feel you need anything more than a Rebel, John. Granted the original Rebel is so old and had so many limitations that even a newer rebel is an upgrade, for most users moving from one entry level to another is really a sidestep. I moved to the a700 because Sony's a100/200/300/etc weren't much of an upgrade over my old Maxxum 5D. I wanted better AF, viewfinder, FPS, etc and to get that I had to step up to the next level of camera (a 7 series, which is Minolta/Sony's enthusiast/semi pro line).

The fact that what used to cost so much more (the 40D) can now be had relatively inexpensively would make me jump on it if I was a Canon user.
From the Mind of Minolta
 
SNATH
Posts: 3049
Joined: Mon Mar 29, 2004 5:23 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Mon Jun 15, 2009 2:15 pm



Quoting Dvincent (Reply 7):
I'd only use a Canon if you paid me to.

Dude, I'd love to. Unfortunately, I need the money to buy more Canon gear.  Wink

Quoting Dvincent (Reply 7):
The closeout XSi is also another great option if you don't feel you need anything more than a Rebel, John.

Exactly. I think the 40D is overall the better camera IMHO. But, the XSi is $200 cheaper, money which can then be put towards bigger cards, a better lens, etc.

Tony
Nikon: we don't want more pixels, we want better pixels.
 
JohnJ
Topic Author
Posts: 1383
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2000 5:01 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Mon Jun 15, 2009 2:25 pm

Indeed excellent responses, and I appreciate it. Seems I have a decision to make, then.

I'm not all that concerned about ergonomics, appearance, etc. And I rarely shoot above ISO100, and never above ISO200 - perhaps the 40D would allow me to move beyond that, but it's not a major consideration. The 6 fps would be nice, but I've grown so accustomed to only being able to take 4 shots of any scene that even the 3.4 fps of the T1i would be a big upgrade for me.

Quoting Dvincent (Reply 5):
Less megapixels is better in this case, as the 500D/50D pay an image quality penalty for their overstuffing of pixels, especially as the ISO climbs. It's not especially bad, I suppose, but you would actually get cleaner results from the 40D in most cases, because Canon has to apply more aggressive noise reduction to compensate for the higher MP count.

Now, this is what it all boils down to for me - image quality. If indeed the 40D's sensor can deliver a better image than the 500D's with its 15 megapixels, that might be the deal breaker.

Since I hadn't considered the 40D, seems I should spend some quality time on dpreview to see what it's all about.

Thanks again for all the input.

John
 
User avatar
dvincent
Posts: 1592
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2007 9:53 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Mon Jun 15, 2009 2:37 pm

Although the 40D's 6FPs might seem like overkill, it actually has a bigger buffer than the T1i, meaning it can hold more frames before it has to stop to dump to card or slow down the rate. The T1i can hold 9 RAW frames in its buffer, as opposed to the 40D's 17 frames. The 40D's continuous rate is adjustable too, so you can set it to 3 FPS and the buffer will last even longer.
From the Mind of Minolta
 
dazbo5
Posts: 2719
Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2005 8:05 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Mon Jun 15, 2009 2:55 pm

JohnJ,

Quoting Dvincent (Reply 5):
Less megapixels is better in this case, as the 500D/50D pay an image quality penalty for their overstuffing of pixels, especially as the ISO climbs. It's not especially bad, I suppose, but you would actually get cleaner results from the 40D in most cases

While I've read all the reviews and gone though the same decision making process you have, I went for the 50D when I upgraded from the 350D (Rebel XT). The magazines do test shots and tell you all about pro's and con's of everything, but I can tell you that in the real world, the image quality from the 50D is equal to the 40D. When I first got the 50D, I went out and tried it under extreme conditions for aviation photography, using it at modertate to high ISO in poor condition. These are a few examples:


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Darren Wilson
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Darren Wilson



View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Darren Wilson
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Darren Wilson


The above were taken at ISO 400 / 800 in very dull conditions in the middle of winter (some of the settings used are in the photo description). I've plenty more examples on here. The 50D performs great under those conditions and far superior to the 300D / 350D in terms of noise performance. I wouldn't dream of using the 350D under those same conditions at those ISO's.

It all comes down to budget, the preffered specification and your preferences. The 40D or 50D will give you lots of enjoyment (the main thing) and a huge increase in quality and performance over your current body. All I would say is you need good quality lenses with the 50D because of the pixel count; it shows up every minor flaw in your lens. You can't get away with using using cheap lenses with it. If you go for the 50D, you might want to budget for lens upgrades in the future. In that respect, the 40D may be the better option. Unless you are going to be printing large scale photos, you'll probably wont need the extra pixels of the 50D (I print upto A3 so they come in useful for me).

Darren
Equipment: 2x Canon EOS 50D; Sigma 10-20 EX DC HSM, 50-500 EX APO DG, Canon 24-105 f/4 L, Speedlite 430EX
 
JakTrax
Posts: 5267
Joined: Thu Jun 30, 2005 3:30 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Mon Jun 15, 2009 3:08 pm

Another vote for the 40/50D here...

I still use a 30D and let me tell you, I'd rather use that than any of the Rebels! Moving up to the semi-pro bodies gives you some neat little options, such as ability to crank up the ISO in increments (based on shutter speeds, i.e. ISO100 to 125, to 160, to 200 etc.), the faster FPS, larger viewfinder, faster performance and better focussing. Additionally, you also get a much more substantially-built camera - sometimes my old Rebel XT/350D felt like it was going to fall apart when I had a big lens on!

Karl
 
Dazed767
Posts: 5005
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 11:55 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Mon Jun 15, 2009 4:27 pm



Quoting Silver1SWA (Reply 4):
Scroll wheel...a great feature that is a must-have once you try it!

+1 vote for the scroll wheel as well.

Quoting SNATH (Reply 6):
I am confident that, if you shoot with a 40D for a few days, you'll find it hard to go back to the Rebels (I did!).

Ditto Tony's comment.

Regarding the video, I'd rather keep my camera a camera right now, and keep a video camera for just that. I mean it's still a new technology in these DSLR's, and bound to improve a lot in a few years.

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/comp...on_eos450d%2Ccanon_eos40d&show=all

A good comparison of the 500D/450D and 40D.
 
JohnJ
Topic Author
Posts: 1383
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2000 5:01 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Mon Jun 15, 2009 9:01 pm

So let's boil this down to another question: if you had the choice between a Canon 40D or a 50D, which would you choose?

All the features and better build quality of the 40D/50D are great, but again I think for me the biggest single decision point is image quality. I will likely keep this camera for 5 or more years, so the fact that the 40D is already an out-of-date model is somewhat of an objection for me, although far from a deal breaker. I'm frankly quite torn by what to do now, and this is a big purchase for me, hence the reason I'm persisting with this thread. Back to image quality - here's the information I have:

40D:
By all accounts provides excellent image quality with its 10 megapixel Digic III sensor.

50D:
Some of the posters on the dpreview forum complain about higher noise from the 50D's Digic 4 sensor. Most of these complaints seem to stem from using high ISO levels. However, the image quality still seems to be regarded as excellent.

T1i:
The information I've seen indicates that the T1i uses very nearly the same sensor as the 50D. In fact, dpreview comments that the T1i is "most of a 50D stuffed into the familiar 450D body". So in theory, the image quality of the much-lower-priced T1i should be about the same as on the 50D, although you obviously sacrifice build quality plus all the other features we've discussed so far.

If your answer to my initial question is that you'd prefer a 50D over a 40D, it would seem to support my buying the T1i over the 40D. This is based on my statement that my most important single decision point is image quality, and the T1i and 50D should have very similar image quality.
 
dazbo5
Posts: 2719
Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2005 8:05 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Mon Jun 15, 2009 10:00 pm

JohnJ

I'd go with the 50D over the 500D (T1i) on the basis of better build quality, faster frame rate and more features. But it all depends on the sorts of things you want to use it for. As a 50D user, I have first hand experience of one in the real world and you won't be dissapointed. As in my previous post, the noise at low ISO's is equivelent to the 40D so you'll not notice a difference. Even at 400 / 800, it's not a problem as the examples I posted above illustrate. It may be a little noisier than a 40D beyond that, but are you ever going to use it beyond 800? I would make a list of the features you most want and base your decision on that. If you want a good quality all round camera, the 40D is ideal at the price. If you want extra pixels but don't need the frame rate, the T1i is worth looking at. If your budget can strech that bit further and you want the pixels and frame rate etc, the 50D will do the job. Bear in mind what I said about lenses though. Best thing to do is go down to your local camera shop and pick them up, get a feel for them. I struggle to use my 350D now as the bigger brothers (40/50D) sit in your hand better and feel more balaned with larger lenses, and the functions are easier to access.

Ultimately, it's your decision and you can do too much reading. Having them in your hand and trying them is the best way to decide.

Darren
Equipment: 2x Canon EOS 50D; Sigma 10-20 EX DC HSM, 50-500 EX APO DG, Canon 24-105 f/4 L, Speedlite 430EX
 
Dazed767
Posts: 5005
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 11:55 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Mon Jun 15, 2009 11:38 pm



Quoting JohnJ (Thread starter):
Canon 300D and overall I remain happy with it; it's still more than capable of capturing Airliners.net-worthy shots. 99% of my shots here were taken with that camera

On second thought, maybe a 40D/50D would be more camera than you need? If your plenty happy with the 300D (other than that buffer, which drove me nuts too), the 500D would be a slam dunk for you. Before you buy though I'd go to the store and play with both before you decide.
 
JohnJ
Topic Author
Posts: 1383
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2000 5:01 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Wed Jun 17, 2009 3:04 pm

Thanks again for the advice from everyone. I just placed my order a second ago...

AND THE WINNER IS:

Canon 40D

Based on all the information I could find on the various review sites, it sounds like the 15 megapixel sensor in the 50D/500D is excellent, and the increased noise becomes apparent only at high ISO. However, just about everyone says to take advantage of the higher resolution you really need extremely high-quality glass, which I don't have at present. The Canon 100-400L will hopefully end up on my camera one of these days, but it won't be soon.

So that's it. I hope I made the right choice, but it's difficult to see how I could go wrong here.

Thanks especially to Dan for pointing me in the direction of Amazon/Adorama, which is where I bought it.
 
SNATH
Posts: 3049
Joined: Mon Mar 29, 2004 5:23 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Wed Jun 17, 2009 3:23 pm



Quoting JohnJ (Reply 17):

John,

Congrats on your order! I'm confident that you'll enjoy the 40D. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

Happy shooting!

Tony
Nikon: we don't want more pixels, we want better pixels.
 
SNATH
Posts: 3049
Joined: Mon Mar 29, 2004 5:23 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Wed Jun 17, 2009 3:35 pm



Quoting JohnJ (Reply 17):

PS And, please, share your thoughts on the 40D here. We'd (OK, I'd) love to hear what you think of it.
Nikon: we don't want more pixels, we want better pixels.
 
User avatar
dvincent
Posts: 1592
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2007 9:53 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Wed Jun 17, 2009 3:46 pm



Quoting JohnJ (Reply 17):
Thanks especially to Dan for pointing me in the direction of Amazon/Adorama, which is where I bought it.

Always happy to help a friend, John.  bigthumbsup 

Now, will you have it in time for Quonset/Space and Aviation Day?  Wink
From the Mind of Minolta
 
JohnJ
Topic Author
Posts: 1383
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2000 5:01 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Wed Jun 17, 2009 7:08 pm

I will definitely post my thoughts here. I have some concerns over the learning curve on the camera, not so much the controls as much as how this will affect my post-processing. I've found that my acceptance rates here have plummeted when I've made even minor adjustments to my workflow, so it will be interesting to see how I fare in the first few weeks after getting the camera.

Dan, the camera should be here well before Quonset but if it gets here before next Tuesday its first big workout will be for Railpictures.net, not for Airliners.net. Big trip planned to railroading nirvana next week, the lovely and desirable community of Altoona, PA.

Not that any of this matters the way the weather has been in New England so far this year. They way things are going it'll be September before I see another blue sky.
 
User avatar
dvincent
Posts: 1592
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2007 9:53 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Wed Jun 17, 2009 8:36 pm



Quoting JohnJ (Reply 21):
I will definitely post my thoughts here. I have some concerns over the learning curve on the camera, not so much the controls as much as how this will affect my post-processing. I've found that my acceptance rates here have plummeted when I've made even minor adjustments to my workflow, so it will be interesting to see how I fare in the first few weeks after getting the camera.

Something to consider is that PS 7 won't process the RAW files from the 40D. You'll need to upgrade Photoshop to be able to work on them. I've seen PS Elements 7 coupons at Costco for $30 off, so if you need an upgrade you might take a look at that.
From the Mind of Minolta
 
Silver1SWA
Posts: 4761
Joined: Wed Mar 10, 2004 6:11 pm

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Wed Jun 17, 2009 8:41 pm



Quoting Dvincent (Reply 22):
Something to consider is that PS 7 won't process the RAW files from the 40D. You'll need to upgrade Photoshop to be able to work on them. I've seen PS Elements 7 coupons at Costco for $30 off, so if you need an upgrade you might take a look at that.

Yeah my copy of CS2 wont handle 40D RAW files using Camera RAW. That's why I use Canon's DPP to process my RAWs before sending the converted TIFF to PS for final editing.
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
JohnJ
Topic Author
Posts: 1383
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2000 5:01 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Wed Jun 17, 2009 8:44 pm

Actually, I have PS7 and I wasn't aware that it could process the RAW files from my 300D. Maybe I just don't know what I'm doing, but I always do the RAW conversion using the Canon RAW conversion utility, then modify the resulting .jpg in Photoshop. It's not elegant but it seems to get the job done.
 
JohnJ
Topic Author
Posts: 1383
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2000 5:01 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Thu Jun 18, 2009 7:41 pm

Holy Overnight, Batman! UPS just dropped my new camera off in my garage a couple of hours ago. Free shipping, and it gets here overnight! One of the benefits of living close to NYC, I guess, but so far I'm impressed with Adorama.

Looks like I have some homework to do this weekend, then.
 
User avatar
dvincent
Posts: 1592
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2007 9:53 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Fri Jun 19, 2009 3:32 am

Yes, if it's UPS ground from New York us chums in the Northeast will get it within a day (usually). Congratulations, John, and we'll be looking forward to your results.
From the Mind of Minolta
 
JohnJ
Topic Author
Posts: 1383
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2000 5:01 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Wed Jul 01, 2009 3:04 pm

With this persistent weather system up here in New England, even two weeks in with this camera I've not been able to point it at an airplane. Maybe this weekend...

However, I took a trip to much-sunnier western Pennsylvania late last week and put the new 40D to good use there with rail photography. The initial setup was less work than I'd expected, although I still need to tinker with the settings, I think. Overall I'd have to say I'm a bit underwhelmed by the camera, but that statement is much more a testament to how much I like my old 300D vs. a slam against the 40D. When the 300D was new it was amazing to me how crisp and vivid the images were, a huge step up from the film I'd been using. The 40D is more of an incremental step, but I'm glad I made the purchase.

I shot mostly in manual mode since rail subjects are tricky using auto exposure. The extremely bright headlights have ruined a lot of shots for me in the past, and I've learned to stay manual when doing a shot of an approaching train. I do this the "poor man's way" by taking a picture of the scene using auto-exposure just before the train arrives, then dialing those settings into manual. It will be very interesting to see how the auto-exposure behaves with airliners. As with my 300D, I plan to mainly stick to AV, f8.0 unless there's a reason to use another setting.

On the plus side, depressing the shutter button is like firing a machine gun! The 300D was more like firing a pistol, and I learned to be very conservative with my shots as I only had four to spare for any given scene. The images I got with the 40D in general appear very crisp and grain-free, and it's nice to have the extra megapixels to play with so that tighter crops don't introduce as much grain and softness. It's also nice not to have a sensor covered in dust (the 300D is badly in need of a cleaning)! I'm not sure how effective the dust reduction is on the 40D, and I'm sure it won't be long before I'm having to clone out dust spots. I'm enjoying the clean sensor while it lasts, though.

I'd be very interested to hear from other 30D/40D/50D users what setting they use for metering and for picture style. Right now I'm using center-weighted metering and standard picture style.

And for another plus, my 7-year-old inherited the 300D and he took some really nice shots on our trip. I basically told him to keep the sun to his back and point the camera at the trains, and he did just fine - enough so that I have hopes of getting at least one of his shots accepted at Railpictures.net, which is in many ways tougher than A.net with regards to acceptance standards.

Here are a couple of shots I snagged in Pennsylvania with the 40D:

http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=288993

http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=289028
 
User avatar
dvincent
Posts: 1592
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2007 9:53 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Wed Jul 01, 2009 3:12 pm



Quoting JohnJ (Reply 27):
However, I took a trip to much-sunnier western Pennsylvania late last week and put the new 40D to good use there with rail photography. The initial setup was less work than I'd expected, although I still need to tinker with the settings, I think. Overall I'd have to say I'm a bit underwhelmed by the camera, but that statement is much more a testament to how much I like my old 300D vs. a slam against the 40D. When the 300D was new it was amazing to me how crisp and vivid the images were, a huge step up from the film I'd been using. The 40D is more of an incremental step, but I'm glad I made the purchase.

The next step is the lenses, John. That'll be your next kick up in image quality. The 40D's higher resolution count is probably exposing the flaws in your older kit. It's anyone's guess when Canon will replace the relatively old 100-400L, though.
From the Mind of Minolta
 
JohnJ
Topic Author
Posts: 1383
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2000 5:01 am

RE: Any Reason Not To Get The Rebel T1i?

Wed Jul 01, 2009 3:44 pm

I definitely would like a new lens, but $1500 for one is a hard sell on the home front. I'm actually reasonably happy with what I have now and don't have an immediate requirement for a lens upgrade, but having an extra 100mm with L quality would be nice.

All that said, it's still how you use the camera. At the railfan-oriented B&B where I stayed on this trip, a fellow guest saw my camera on the table next to me on the outside deck and commented "nice camera - but not with that lens". I had my Canon 28-105mm USM attached, which is actually a pretty sharp lens for consumer grade, and not one I'm considering replacing. He was shooting with a 50D and some L-series lens, not sure which one.

The next morning just about everyone staying at the place was out at 6 a.m. to try for a shot of the train in that first link in my previous post. The guy who made the lens comment opted to stay on the deck and got a heavily backlit shot; my son and I had scoped out photo spots the previous evening and were rewarded with nice lighting for our effort.

[Edited 2009-07-01 08:46:01]

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 25 guests

Popular Searches On Airliners.net

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos