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Thread: I think I want to upgrade

  1. #1
    Mario Xavier's Avatar
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    I think I want to upgrade

    Lately I've found myself questioning my purchase once I discovered that I really don't care for video. What did I compromise for the added price of having the latest Translucent mirror technology that I don't use? If I trade that in, will I gain the little bit that I'm looking for?

    It's not that I'm unhappy. I'm just curious to know how I'd feel if I knew I was paying for all camera. If I went to the Sony a580 I could keep my Minolta lenses but that's not important. I'm not that attached to the Sony brand. The Nikon D90 is definitely in my sights. Any suggestions?
    Last edited by Mario Xavier; 20th February 2011 at 11:00 PM.

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    Re: I think I want to upgrade

    Is Canon in the "frame" also?

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    Mario Xavier's Avatar
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    Re: I think I want to upgrade

    absolutely

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    Re: I think I want to upgrade

    It seems that if we want a new DSLR camera we must accept that it will come with video capability. I don't have any use for video and really wish that the manufacturers would spend their R&D money on making the absolute best still camera instead of a still - video hybrid...

    Although I can see that video capability might be great if I were in Cairo shooting stills of the pyramids and all of a sudden a revolution broke out. But, which should I be shooting, stills or video? I was a cinematographer for many-many years and realize that I could not competently shoot cinematography and stills concurrently. One or the other medium had to suffer when I tied.

    I was reading a review of the Canon 60D lately from a photographer in Hong Kong. He alluded to the still plus video capability to be like a mixture of coffee and tea which he says is a popular drink in Hong Kong. He states that he likes his tea and his coffee out of separate cups and I must agree with him.

    However, apparently the drinkers of the tea/coffee concoction do not agree with him. And apparently video sells cameras along with mega-million pixels and ISO capability in the gazillions...

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    Re: I think I want to upgrade

    So what are you shooting with now, and in what ways is your currect camera failing to meet you needs?

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    Mario Xavier's Avatar
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    Re: I think I want to upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    So what are you shooting with now, and in what ways is your currect camera failing to meet you needs?
    I have three annoyances: Sony a33 (The image below taken with 50mm f1.7 Minolta lens)

    1. There seems to be a very narrow range around the center focal point where I'm able to get the sharpest image.
    I think I want to upgrade
    [The right side is closest to center focal point]

    2. My RAW files seem a lot more "rough" at 100% than fine .jpegs.
    3. All of the images come out softer than I prefer. There's an option on camera to allow the camera to sharpen the images but it's still annoying nonetheless.
    Last edited by Mario Xavier; 21st February 2011 at 05:49 AM.

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    Black Pearl's Avatar
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    Re: I think I want to upgrade

    Nothing specifically wrong with the A33 though its sensor is not quite as refined as the one in it's bigger brother the A55. Nikon use the A33 sensor in their D3100 and Pentax use it in the K7 both of which get good right-ups. That said they both use the A55 sensor in their more expensive D7000/K5 bodies and they are universally loved.

    Your RAW shots may well look a little 'rough' as the camera applies all sorts of parameters when its processing the jpegs that CS3 won't do on its own - you have to do these manually hence the advantage of a RAW, you get to choose what is done and what isn't.

    If you are thinking of an upgrade why not hold out for the 'just' announced A77 - the Alpha 700 replacement.

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    Re: I think I want to upgrade

    As Robin said, Raw files are exactly as the name implies and leave all processing to the user during editing with suitable software. So they will usually initially appear inferior to images which have been partially auto processed at the time of shooting. But it's the final edited result which matters.

    But even on those rare occasions when I shoot Jpeg I still turn off the automatic 'enhancements' preferring to be in full charge of how my images get processed.

    But back to the original question. Being another person who prefers standard digital photography to be separate from video I really don't know what I would purchase to replace my Canon 40D.

    I suppose the only chjoice, if going for a reduced sensor size, would be to get a 7D and forget about the video option for which I have paid a premium on the price. Somehow I don't see the 60D as being a suitable alternative.

    But considering Richard's suggestion. I suppose that one day I might be photographing the Village Fete when a revolution starts or the Council Chairman gets assassinated and a few minutes of third rate video will make me famous, but somehow I have doubts. Wait a minute, was that a car backfiring or gunshots.

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    Re: I think I want to upgrade

    One thing which I have noticed is that often persons who want to test their lenses for image quality shoot images of cereal boxes, paper money, coins, bookcases with books or just a lens target from very close distances. IMO, many non macro lenses are not exactly at their best when shooting at very close distances and most of us use our camera/lenses more frequently at longer distances. Additionally, even with macro lenses, auto-focus at extremely close ranges is not always accurate. Most macro photographers will use manual focus.

    Additionally, I often see persons who have shot trees as a way of testing the focus of their camera/lens. This is not a great idea either, since there are so many planes of focus on the various branches that it is difficult to ascertain if your camera is focusing correctly.

    When I first started shooting with longer lenses, I would let my camera select the focus point. However, even though the camera is smarter than I am in many ways, it doesn't always select the point that I want. Letting the camera select the point of focus will often result in the portion of the image that YOU WANT in focus to be soft.

    However, your problem might just be that your RAW images need post processing. Photographers often (as aptly stated in above posts) want their RAW images to look perfect right out of the camera and are disappointed when their very expensive camera and top-line lens will not deliver such performance. The oft heard complaint is that "THIS EXPENSIVE OUTFIT SHOULD BE ABLE TO PRODUCE AN IMAGE RIGHT OUT OF THE CAMERA THAT IS PERFECT!" However, as the old song title goes; "It ain't necessarily so!"

    Go to the top of this page and click on "TUTORIALS" and you will find some valuable information regarding sharpening. I won't get into the details here because I don't want to re-invent the wheel but, the best sharpening procedure is two phase, input sharpening and output sharpening. The output sharpening is based on what you expect your final product to be.

  10. #10
    Mario Xavier's Avatar
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    Re: I think I want to upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by black pearl View Post
    Nothing specifically wrong with the A33 though its sensor is not quite as refined as the one in it's bigger brother the A55. Nikon use the A33 sensor in their D3100 and Pentax use it in the K7 both of which get good right-ups. That said they both use the A55 sensor in their more expensive D7000/K5 bodies and they are universally loved.

    Your RAW shots may well look a little 'rough' as the camera applies all sorts of parameters when its processing the jpegs that CS3 won't do on its own - you have to do these manually hence the advantage of a RAW, you get to choose what is done and what isn't.

    If you are thinking of an upgrade why not hold out for the 'just' announced A77 - the Alpha 700 replacement.
    Hmm I don't know much about the a700 series. I'll do some digging.

    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff F View Post
    As Robin said, Raw files are exactly as the name implies and leave all processing to the user during editing with suitable software. So they will usually initially appear inferior to images which have been partially auto processed at the time of shooting. But it's the final edited result which matters.

    But even on those rare occasions when I shoot Jpeg I still turn off the automatic 'enhancements' preferring to be in full charge of how my images get processed.

    But back to the original question. Being another person who prefers standard digital photography to be separate from video I really don't know what I would purchase to replace my Canon 40D.

    I suppose the only chjoice, if going for a reduced sensor size, would be to get a 7D and forget about the video option for which I have paid a premium on the price. Somehow I don't see the 60D as being a suitable alternative.

    But considering Richard's suggestion. I suppose that one day I might be photographing the Village Fete when a revolution starts or the Council Chairman gets assassinated and a few minutes of third rate video will make me famous, but somehow I have doubts. Wait a minute, was that a car backfiring or gunshots.
    Lol! Yeah I guess you're all right. I did some searching around and to get what I want I'd need to drop $5,000 on a D3s or something. I'm not there yet. Maybe in a decade I will be. So back to reality...

    Maybe a slightly more "refined" sensor will pacify me. In the meantime I'll keep my eyes open and keep reading until I find something that suits me.

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