Recommend a digital camera for a friend.

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Recommend a digital camera for a friend.

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A friend is just getting into photography wants to purchase a good digital camera, something that is a good all-rounder, weddings, landscapes, portraits etc.

Can anyone recommend her a camera, new or used costing less than £1000?
 
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The Canon 600D will be a good bet. All of it's features will be suitable for what your friend wants to do. If she is wanting to get some lenses for it as well, I highly recommend the Canon 50mm f1.8 II lens and the Tamron 28-75mm f2.8 lens. I own both lenses and they're both fantastic. I mostly used the Tamron lens to shoot a wedding last year and I was very happy with the shots it produced. The 50mm lens will be great for portraits. :)
 

The Beard

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A few months ago I finally made the leap to full digital with a Nikon D7000. This comes with an 18-105 zoom kit lens, although it is available without if your friend would rather buy a prime lens instead. With the kit zoom it's just about creeping under the £1,000 mark. For me this is the latest in a series of 3 Nikon cameras starting with an FE in 1976 then adding an F3 6 years later. Both are still functioning well, although the FE can't use a flash through the hot shoe. Having said that I did drop it from the balcony of the Free Trade Hall in about 1979. The flash worked for 30 years afterwards before finally giving up the ghost.

The D7000 may well suit your friend as, among other things it has two memory cards. The second one can be used for 1080p video, as an overflow from the first, or, which may be important if a move to professional status is on the cards, as a duplicate, or back up if you like which reduces the risk of losing images. There are all the usual range of Nikkor lenses which are excellent and there's even a Nikon dedicated magazine, Nphoto which, incidentally is not funded or supported by the manufacturer.

Although I've only had the D7000 for a few months and therefore don't really know what it can (or can't) do. My old film bodies have undergone a number of trials, apart from the fall from height, the FE has been on several RAC rallies and on one occasion ended up smeared in frozen ketchup and onions. The F3 one day was accidentally left on the parcel shelf of a car in Charleston South Carolina in 105F heat for 10 hours. No light entered the body and it still functioned perfectly.

One additional benefit is a lack of obselescence. All my manual Nikkor lenses, 28mm, 50mm, 135mm, 200mm and Sigma 600mm Cat all work perfectly with the new camera.
 
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Shadeyman
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She was looking at getting the D7000(very highly rated camera) but was considering the 600D first as it would leave her with money to spend on lenses.

Does she really need extra lenses?
 
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maddogmorg

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Lenses are essential. I have a Pentax, which is brilliant! but it came with just an 18-55 lens, so i had to buy a 50-200 to get the total range i feel like i needed. Though i do keep eyeing up even longer range lenses!

I got mine from Amazon when it was on offer, so i saved a lot of money!

Snapsort are quite good at comparing the specs of cameras.
http://snapsort.com/recommend#!type=DSLR&general=price&price=1000
Though their choice of winners doesn't always make sense. For some reason it reckons my camera isn't as good as the camera before it despite being better in almost every respect.

Though always check lens availability and prices for each mount just as much if not more than camera specs!
 
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The Beard

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The D7000 is on the cusp of being a professional camera although in fairness it isn't a full frame body like, for example, the D300. Because of this it comes with a 18-105 kit lens instead of the usual 18-55 that most "enthusiast" models include.

It would also depend on how quickly she intends to move into the professional arena. Many photographic purists would favour prime lenses and if she's going to be taking photographs with plenty of time then some second hand manual focus lenses might be a good idea as most digitals have a manual facility. As I said above, I still use all my old manual lenses and the images are fine.

Not all makes allow you to do that and it'll save me a fair amount of dosh in the long run.
 

Most Easterly Pandas

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I've recently purchased a Nikon D5100. Amazing bit of kit.

Cannon vs Nikon pics generally are similar with the exception of night shots, the D5100 was a bit better than the Cannon equivalent, but the Cannon equivalent did have a slightly better quality of HD video recording.
 

The Beard

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I've recently purchased a Nikon D5100. Amazing bit of kit.

Cannon vs Nikon pics generally are similar with the exception of night shots, the D5100 was a bit better than the Cannon equivalent, but the Cannon equivalent did have a slightly better quality of HD video recording.
Very nearly bought a D5100, but the only reason I didn't is because although it will take my old lenses they won't meter so I'd have to use a hand-held and I just didn't want the messing about.

I'm only disappointed that the D7000 doesn't have the swivel viewing screen, that would have been a real boon when dealing with events with taller (not that difficult really) people in front of me not to mention taking photos over next door's fence when his wife is in her bikini and.....

Bl**dy 'ell Mrs. Beard's coming, gotta go
 

The Beard

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She was looking at getting the D7000(very highly rated camera) but was considering the 600D first as it would leave her with money to spend on lenses.

Does she really need extra lenses?
I think it may depend on how far advanced she is. In other words, taking only one lens with you if you're just going out to take pictures, rather than on an assignment, can make you a lot more selective in the photos you take.

You get somewhere with your short lens and see a good photo opportunity, but if you can't reach it with, for example, a 50mm prime lens just don't take the pic in the first place. Look for a more suitable subject or come back another time with the right kit. The other advantage with having two SD Cards is that if you shoot in RAW you have much more facility to mess around with the image on the various software that is available. As RAW images take a lot more space than JPEG (Ha, actually sounds like I know what I'm talking about here) you have more space to store them with two cards. Plus, the D7000, as I mentioned below can use old Nikkor manual lenses. You just set the camera to Aperture Priority and switch focusing to manual and Bob's your uncle. You can buy manual focus lenses, which are top quality for next to nothing.
 
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