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What kind of camera should I ask Santa for?

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  • What kind of camera should I ask Santa for?

    I am looking at all these beautiful pictures on here. I was wondering what kind of camera should I get that can take such beautiful pictures. Especially the night shots. I would love to get good pictures of the fireworks and fantasmic.

    I currently own a Sony DSC-n1 and a Canon SD1000. These cameras get ok pics during the day but at night, they don't get good pics. Unless someone can tell me how to get the good pics, please recommend something that would be good for me. I would prefer a point and shoot but something tells me that I need a slr.

    Thanks for all your help! Merry Christmas!
    Next trips to Disneyland are Aug 7-11 and Nov 21-26!

  • #2
    Re: What kind of camera should I ask Santa for?

    The difference between a good digital camera and a mediocre one is the quality of the CCD. A high resolution CCD is less important than on with low noise. Good CCD's are typically only found on professional quality cameras. Consumer level point and shoot cameras have mediocre (and thus inexpensive) CCD's.

    As for night shots, perhaps a quality flash unit will do the trick.

    Check out cnet.com for reviews

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    • #3
      Re: What kind of camera should I ask Santa for?

      When asked, my personal recommendation is invariably and unhesitatingly the Canon Digital Rebel XT. It's an incredibly low-priced digital SLR that I've been using for a few years now. Takes beautiful shots if handled correctly. Now that Canon has released the XTi, the original XT is even cheaper. You can buy either one, but the XTi doesn't offer very many big advantages to make up for the higher price.

      The XT isn't cheap because it takes lower-quality photos than its big brothers. In fact, the sensor inside is exactly the same as the sensor used in some of Canon's bigger, more expensive SLRs. Canon just wraps it in a smaller, less heavy-duty body with a few of the minor cosmetic features missing and gives it a much lower price.

      I would like to say, however, that low-light photography is difficult no matter what camera you have. A tripod or monopod helps enormously. So does a low-noise CCD (or, in the case of the Rebel XT, CMOS), since then you can take darker photos with faster shutter speeds and then brighten them up later. So yeah, don't buy an SLR thinking it'll automatically give you better low-light shots. But some things you can do to maximize the quality of your low-light photography:

      * Buy "fast" lenses--i.e. ones that have a low f-stop number.

      * Buy a camera that can shoot in RAW, which lets you use the full dynamic range captured by the sensor.

      * Make sure you're keeping the shutter speed relatively fast. The rule of thumb often given for the slowest "safe" shutter speed is 1/f, where f is the focal length of the lens. (For example, don't shoot slower than 1/100th of a second with a 100mm lens.) With the Rebel, you may have to shoot faster than this because this camera has what's called a crop factor. I avoid shooting slower than 1/2f with the Rebel.

      * Use rather high ISO numbers, but keep in mind that shooting at a lower ISO number and then brightening it up later is very nearly the same thing. You still get increased grain and loss of information.

      * DON'T USE FLASH FOR FIREWORKS AND FANTASMIC, FKRUCZ!

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      • #4
        Re: What kind of camera should I ask Santa for?

        I would kill for a Canon Rebel XT or XTi.

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        • #5
          Re: What kind of camera should I ask Santa for?

          Also, with the digital slr's you can rent lenses and flashes to tey them out before you buy or if you just want to see how a certain lens is. Thanks for that top frogberto.

          I'm normally don't use a flash, but on new years eve I will need to. I'm renting one for $18.00, sure beats buying one for $250.00+.

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          • #6
            Re: What kind of camera should I ask Santa for?

            where would you rent it at? i was looking at the rebels at walmart. but it wasn't the ones you recommended. it was $198 though. please let me know the simple basics that i will for sure need to take good pictures. like what kind of lense and flash? it didn't look like it came with a flash.
            Next trips to Disneyland are Aug 7-11 and Nov 21-26!

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            • #7
              Re: What kind of camera should I ask Santa for?

              What's your budget? I'd recommend a DSLR if you can afford it. Any of the Canons are great, from the Xti up to the 1DS. Personally I shoot with a Canon 5D.
              HDAlien

              -----------------------------------------------------
              "I dream of the day when you can go to a drive through, purchase alcohol, tobacco, and bullets, and use them all before you get home" -- Dogbert

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