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You say you want resolution? The whole world is watching these digicams.


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Old August 27th, 2004, 01:36 AM   #1
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digital still camera

I'm looking to buy a digital still camera. I will be using the photos to send to film festivals and to put onto DVD covers. How many megapixels would I need if the largest I'll be going is 8 x 10? What would be a good camera to purchase? I've been looking at the Nikon Coolpix 5700 and 8700.

One more question. How will a color photo look converted to black and white?

Thanks
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Old August 27th, 2004, 03:47 AM   #2
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Deniz: I've moved your thread to our still camera forum.
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Old August 27th, 2004, 04:38 AM   #3
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Deniz,

You might want to consider the Canon dRebel. Its dropped in price a good bit, you can get it for $819 w/ kit lens for $819 at buydig.com - the cameras you mentioned would do what you want but I'd buy the Canon before I'd buy the 8700. HTH
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Old August 27th, 2004, 05:57 AM   #4
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Sometimes you can get an 8x10 from a 3MP camera. It will depend on the the file format (RAW, Tiff, jpeg) and how the image is processed. Cropping is usually not possible because of insufficient resolution. I would recommend a 4MP camera or greater for more versatility and ease in making 8x10's.

Colors photos converted to B&W look great, if converted properly. There are numerous tutorials on the web. I use either a plugin for Photoshop from the Image Factory or desaturate in PS. But there are many different methods depending on the desired effects and time you want to spend doing the conversion.

The 8700 is fine and I would also look at similar offerings from Olympus, Canon and Minolta. Read some of the reviews at DP Review, Steve's Digicams and of course try them out (kick the tires, so to speak) at a local retailer.
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Old August 27th, 2004, 07:16 AM   #5
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I'm in the same position Denniz... I want a nice digital cam, but not spend a lot. I wanted hi rez, and an slr.

After just comparison shopping, I settled on the Fuji Finpix 5000. It's 3.1 mp . The lens isn't removable, but it is an slr with a 10x optical, all for around $350. I asked around here, and most folks said the Fuji was pretty reliable.

I'm just waiting to get caught up before getting new stuff... But Christmas is just around the corner ;)
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Old August 27th, 2004, 03:18 PM   #6
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Thanks for the replies. After some research I'm leaning towards the Canon Digital rebel. From what I can tell, I'll be able to get more creative with it than the Nikon 8700.

I also checked out some of the more professional cameras like the Canon 10D, but I don't think it's neccasary to spend the extra money when I'm not using it for professional work (just promotional pictures for my movies and photos to use on DVD inserts).

I have some more question before I make a decision.

1. Will there be a huge difference between 6.5 MP (Canon) and 8 MP (Nikon)?

2. If I wanted to blow a picture up to the size of a poster, would 6.5 be enough resolution for a clean and detailed image?

3. The Digital Rebel has been around for some time now. Are there any plans to replace it in the near future?
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Old August 27th, 2004, 03:51 PM   #7
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The pixels and CMOS chip on the Rebel are larger and will provide more resolution, better signal to noise ratio and an overall better image than the Nikon. Depending on the methods, software and printers used, I've seen Rebel files enlarged to 20x30 that look great.

The Rebel could be replaced sometime before the holidays, but I wouldn't bet on it. I think it is more likely to be replaced after the first of the year.
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Old August 27th, 2004, 04:23 PM   #8
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FWIW, I have a Nikon 5700 and like it a lot, although there are some limitations. I wasn't quite ready for DSLR and wanted something a bit smaller and lighter also. From what I've read, the 8700 is pretty much the same but with more pixels. If you can still get a 5700 it would be a pretty good deal I'd imagine (I paid $1,000 for mine right after it was introduced).

Low light situations can be problematic, but this is the case with many other cameras as well. The ISO 800 setting is pretty useless because the noise in the image is unacceptable. If you just want to shoot long exposures of static objects at night (like flowers in the moonlight) it will give excellent results at ISO 100 though. It has a noise cancelling mode for long exposures that works very well - it takes a companion "dark image" to use in filtering out the noise. But action shots, like dark stage shows, can be tough. With a little experience you can deal with these however.

I really like the big zoom on this camera, although you lose a couple f-stops at the telephoto end, and the wide end isn't as wide as I'd like. I got the wide adaptor which is really nice (although pricey), but it's huge and heavy. Battery life seems pretty good. I always carry 3 with me but have never gone through more than 2 on a typical day.

Another minor gripe is that the telescoping lens design doesn't have any filter threads. Nikon makes some sort of clip on adaptor, and there's a 3rd party extension tube that also has filter threads, probably a better solution. But the image quality is beautiful. People have repeatedly said they thought my photos were slide scans. The 2/3" CCD really delivers nice results.

This is my third Nikon CoolPix camera. I started with their first model, the 900 and then moved up to the 990. As much as I like the 5700, I miss the 990 a bit because the smaller size made it really handy to stick in a pocket. All the controls have evolved from these earlier models, but there are more options. Some people feel the nikons are hard to understand but they seem second nature to me since I've used them for so long.

Perhaps my favorite feature and the main reason for getting the 5700 is the EVF (electronic viewfinder). I suppose more cameras have these now, but it was new for Nikon when I got mine. LCD screens are not very usable in bright sunlight, and optical finders don't work with wide or tele adaptors. The articulated LCD on the 5700 is also pretty handy, much like a camcorder screen.

I know that higher res sounds better, but I honestly don't know how useful it would be for me, and I take so many photos that it would definitely be a storage issue. The reviews I've seen of the 8700 were rather lukewarm but the 5700 got a better reaction on its introduction IIRC.

Happy shopping!
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Old August 27th, 2004, 06:44 PM   #9
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I know the Digital Rebel has manual focus and shutter speed. What other manual controls does it have besides those?
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Old August 27th, 2004, 06:59 PM   #10
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everything is manual or adjustable
shutter
iris
wb
focus
metering

major lack in the 300d is ttl for flash compensation...personaly i don't use flash, and like the weight of the 300d vs other dslr...i use a really light wieght 30 for shooting
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Old August 27th, 2004, 07:07 PM   #11
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I'm new to digital photography. What does ttl for flash compensation mean?
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Old August 27th, 2004, 08:09 PM   #12
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Through The Lens ttl

With TTL technology, the camera's computer provides the correct exposure regardless of the aperture or flash-to-subject distance (as long as they're within the realm of the flash's power). TTL technology puts the control of depth-of-field back into the hands of the photographer.
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Old August 31st, 2004, 06:12 PM   #13
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Which flash would be better for the Digital Rebel -- the 420EX or the 550EX?
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