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Your Questions About Digital Photography School

Daniel asks…

Best digital camera for a student photographer?

I am currently a student in high school, and I am very interested in digital photography. I do not have a lot of experience with purchasing cameras, and I am looking for a digital camera that has great features, easy to use functions, and is durable. Any suggestions are appreciated. Thanks!

Pip answers:

SLR is good but $$$ even the inexpensive ones are $500+.

A good point and shoot that has full manual shooting capability will be $250+ and it is the minimum I would recommend for someone who thinks they might get serious about shooting since even if you upgrade later on, you can still learn how to take pictures by using the full manual mode.

Then IF you decide to upgrade to a true SLR/DSLR, you can always use the P&S as a pocket camera while the DSLR/SLR can become your serious shooter.

On the other hand if you decide that Photography is not your thing, it hasn’t cost you alot to figure that out.

HTH.

Laura asks…

What is the best digital SLR camera for a beginner?

I’m 16 and I have been really interested in photography for a long time. At school I have taken several digital photography classes and in all of them I have used my point and shoot camera. I’m ready to move up to the digital SLR cameras but I’m not sure what brand or model. I would prefer to stay in the hundreds for the price range and nothing too complicated yet. Help!

Pip answers:

You will find many people recommend the Nikon or the Canon Rebels (of which there are 3 models). I found the viewfinders too busy for my tastes, even though I have been a Canon user all my life. Some one on this forum recommend a Pentax Kx. I checked the camera out and fell in love. I need another camera like I need a hole in my head. The viewfinder is relativity uncluttered and the camera is light. I never thought I would go back into a SLR or more properly called a DSLR (digital SIngle Lens Reflex). The point that the focus stabilization is built into the camera, allowing one to use lenses from other Pentax cameras (film type included) was a smart feature on Pentax’s part. The price is also more reasonable. Check it out!

Http://www.amazon.com/Pentax-K-x-2-7-inch-18-55mm-Black/dp/B002OEBTC8/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1290210308&sr=8-1

Chris asks…

What will I learn in digital photography class?

I will be taking digital photography in the fall semester. What will I learn? Will the school teach me how to use photshop??

Pip answers:

How on earth can we possibly answer that when we know NOTHING about the school or even how long the class/course is?
How about asking the school?

Thomas asks…

What kind of camera brands are there?

At the moment, I’m taking Digital Photography for school and I am currently using a Nikon. (I loooove my D3100!!) I know that there is Cannon, FujiFilm, and Sony, but out of curiosity, what other camera brands are there? Are there brands that are not specifically sold in the US? It peaks my interest.

Oh and btw, I’m not talking about the Point and Shoot ones. Definitely just DSLR cameras. :)

Oh and if you do have a DSLR, What Brand and model do you have?

Pip answers:

There are popular brands and there are obscure brands. There are specialty brands and there are general purpose brands. There are established brands and there are mediocre brands. Now I’m pretty sure this is not what you are asking about but then I can’t help myself.

DSLR brands? Here, help yourself.

Medium format dSLR brands include the following.

Hasselblad
Mamiya
Leica
Pentax

Full-frame, 1.5X and 1.6X crop sensor dSLRs are made by the following brands.

Canon
Nikon
Pentax
Sony
Sigma

Four-thirds dSLRs are made by:

Olympus
Panasonic
Leica

These two both have stopped making dSLRs years ago.

Kodak
Fujifilm

Then there is Konica-Minolta that got bought by

Sony

to start their dSLR line and

Samsung

who ventured briefly with Pentax to start their digital camera line.

Paul asks…

what would be a better photograph shoot?

I am taking a digital photography class in school and was wondering what would be a better shoot for me to do. This is the final shoot of the semester and we must come up with something on our own to do.Plus we need to parts for the shoot. I have decided I wanted to do a self portrait type shoot. Which would be better and more unique?? :
1) Shooting people, both children and adults, in their natural states.
OR
2) Photographing something from everyone of our previous shoots. Having some people in my class be my model.
Please help. Thanks.

Pip answers:

Well it honestly depends how well of a Photographer you are. You can go from every day life to something completely different. I’m 15 & I’m about to do a shoot of my friend in a white tank, white shorts and a completely white background. We are going to take paint and splatter it all over the place making it look like she’s stuck in the paper..or becoming one with the paper. For a final exam I would make it interesting.. Something no one would even think about doing. Good luck!

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Your Questions About Sony Digital Camera Memory Card

Richard asks…

should i buy the special wii memory card or should i buy a regular camera one?

cuz the wii memory card looks exactly like a digital camera memory card.

Pip answers:

You should get an SD Memory Card from Sony or Sandisk. They are definetely more worth the money, and they come in all kinds of storage sizes. Any SD Card will be compatible with the Nintendo Wii.

Laura asks…

If I delete the pictures in my digital camera do i get all the space back in the memory card?

I have a digital Camera (Sony Cybershot DSC-W350) and i had alot of pictures in my digital camera, I imported them and then I disconnected my camera from the computer. I turned my camera back on and i went to settings or whatever its called and clicked on delete pictures in this range until I deleted them all. Does that mean I got the space back from the memory card or do they still take up space?

Pip answers:

Yes, but instead of deleting you should format your card in the camera after you have downloaded and backed up your photos to external sources.

Sandy asks…

How can i delete datas in camera memory, i mean no recovery for the erased data?

I like to know the deletion method for memory cards in digital cameras like sony,canon..,in order to protect the privacy of the erased data. recovery softwares shouldn’t able to recover the erased data in the memory card

Pip answers:

When u erase some thing from memory card it just delete it temporarily and makes the space available…. So these files are recoverable using softwares…. U can format ur memory card or u can take some scrap photos and fill ur memory card and erase it , this way the new ones will replace the old files and old one will not be recoverable..

Thomas asks…

What kinds of digital photography memory cards are available?

I am currently in the market for a digital camera.
I see that there are a number of different digital memory cards available.
Can you tell me what they are? What are the differences between them?And what the advantages and disadvantages of each different kind?

Pip answers:

All the above information is good stuff.

Here is the list.

CF (Compact Flash) = used by all professional DSLR’s
SD / SDHC (Secure Digital … High Capacity) = used by all but three P&S digital cameras and some entry level DSLR cameras
xD (picture cards) = used by Olympus and some Fujifilm cameras
Memory Stick = used only by Sony products.

The advantage of CF and SD cards is there are so many made, their cost per GB is sometimes half of the other two card types.

Sharon asks…

Do phone stores sell memory cards that will work in my camera?

I need a memory card for a digital camera. Will the ones that work in phones also work in my camera or not?

Pip answers:

Its cheaper to buy online, but in store its best to go to walmart or target as any other place or cell phone stores will charge more then others. If your using the mini SD cards then all your gonna need to do is buy the SD card adapter combo. This is pretty much the standard on cell phones that use memory cards. You can take the sdhc card from your cell phone and put it in the adapter and put it in a camera or other compatible device. Some cell phones and sony cell phones use the Memory Stick Pro Duo which can be used between the cell phones to the cameras to PSP and some camcorders. But since i dont know what memory card your camera needs and if you plan on using one from your cell phone to camera, this is the best i can give.

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Your Questions About Canon Digital Camera

William asks…

What kind of batteries should be used with Canon Digital camera A 570? Any specific brand?

I have recently purchased Canon A 570 Digital camera. The batteries have gone dead I have replaced the old Panasonic batteries with brand new Duracell battery however the moment I inserted the batteries I get battery low display. Are there any specific brands that we have to purchase and any specific model? Can we use rechargeable batteries?
Which recharger should I use? Any specific brand? Please let me know the exact name of the model/brand of batteries.

Pip answers:

Yes, of course you can use rechargeable batteries. In fact, that’s what you SHOULD use. Any good name brand of rechargeable NiMh battery and charger will do. Make sure they are high capacity (something like Energizer 2700mAh or higher).

Your camera only uses 2 AA batteries, so make sure you buy 4 batteries and a charger that can charge 4 batteries at a time, so you always have a spare set.

To lengthen your battery life, make sure you turn off the LCD in between shots, and also limit the use of the flash, zoom and recording of movies.

Make sure you always give the batteries a charge before you plan to use the camera. Especially if you have not used it in a while, because NiMh batteries will discharge at the rate of about 1/2 -1% per day when not used.

You can also use Lithium batteries (such as Energizer e2). They are non rechargeable and fairly expensive, but provide a much longer battery life than ordinary batteries. They are perfect as an emergency backup…and the good thing about them is that they do not discharge when not used.

Good luck…

Mary asks…

How do you format a memory card on a digital camera?

Anyone know? I have an A550 Canon Digital Camera and need to format the memory card.

Pip answers:

For what it’s worth, on my Nikon D200, I can go to the set up menu and format is my first submenu choice.

I would suggest opening the shooting menu on you A550 and see if there is a format choice.

If you no longer have your user manual, you could try going to the Canon website for assistance.

John asks…

Where can you get replacement parts for a digital camera?

A friend has a Canon digital camera and a small plastic part inside of where you switch between viewing and taking pictures appears to have broken off. You could see it when you opened the back. Is there any place that sells replacement parts? It would be a simple fix if only the part could be found. Thanks!

Pip answers:

The best place to get the right part is straight from the manufactuer. You could also try an internet search to see if you could find a company that supplies repair parts for your particular model of camera.

Sharon asks…

Which digital cameras are better, HP or Canon?

Hi!!

I’m in a dilemma right now as to which digital camera to buy. I have to choose between an HP (M537) and a Canon (Powershot A5).

Both of them are 6 Megapixels but the Canon is about $60 more expensive.

I can afford both but I’d like to find out from you which brand you would rather choose and why. . . .thanks!!!!!

Pip answers:

Don’t think HP makes cameras now, but I have an HP M417 that really works well and have always had great support from HP. They may drop the price if you tell them that HP is out of the camera business. The following information should help you know what to look for in a new camera.

There are so many cameras out there it is difficult to say which is best, but digital is definitely the way to go. The following link will be very helpful as it list most of the cameras out there with prices. Http://reviews.cnet.com/digital-cameras/

What gives a camera its picture quality? The following information should help you know what to look for in a camera.

The short answer is that it is mostly the skill of the photographer that produces high quality pictures. The lens and camera are very important, but the ability to set the scene, adjust the cameras settings, and hold the camera very still or use a tripod with auto or remote shutter actuation when required is what gets the great pictures.

Many of the new cameras come with only an LCD screen. Would suggest that you find one that also has an optical view finder because the LCD screen is almost impossible to see in bright sun.

Higher mega pixels may not really be the best thing to look for. It is more expensive, takes longer to process, and may not be needed unless you are making a really large picture or blowing up a small part of a picture. Maximum print size for a 3 mega pixel setting is 8 x 10 inches.
Http://www.kodak.com/eknec/PageQuerier.jhtml?pq-path=398&pq-locale=en_US&_requestid=2039 …
Http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/mpmyth.htm …

Lots of great camera tips in these two links. Http://www.danscamera.com/Learning/going_digital/#resolution …
Http://www.kodak.com/eknec/PageQuerier.jhtml?pq-path=38/10468/6368/333&pq-locale=en_US …

Check this more for the money camera. FUJIFILM – FinePix 10.0-Megapixel Digital.
Life time Warranty (Parts & Labor).

Wide-angle shooting, a 12x optical zoom and picture stabilization mode combine in this camera for exceptional shooting performance, even at a distance. Plentiful scene modes, autofocus and automatic white balance controls make this camera a snap to operate. You may be able to find it on the Internet for a lower price ($144), but be careful of the vendor.
Http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=8879234&type=product&productCategoryId=pcmcat152400050001&id=1212192673855 …

This could be the best slim line camera with a viewfinder. It’s PINK!
Http://shopping.yahoo.com/p:Sony%20Cyber-shot%20DSC-W150%2FR%20Digital%20Camera:1995337750;_ylc=X3oDMTB0bjZzaWNuBF9TAzk2NjMyOTA3BHNlYwNmZWVkBHNsawNlbGVj …

The information about my camera is just to show that you don’t need the biggest and best. Just know how to use the one you have.
My camera has 5.2 mega pixel, but I use 3 most of the time because it gives great results, is faster, and takes less memory. Also, it only has a 3 x optical zoom and 7x digital zoom. I never use the digital zoom because making pictures larger works better on the computer. This is an old camera, but everyone is impressed with the quality pictures it takes … Like magic.

Check with the Geeks in several stores and compare prices. Ask what cameras they own, but don’t believe everything you hear. Once you select a camera read all about it in the owner’s manual. Just learned that my camera has red-eye prevention and correction. It also has adaptive lighting. You may be able to view the owners manual at this link, but will need to Login. Http://www.retrevo.com/s/digital+camera …

The source links will show most of the cameras out there with prices and help make your digital cameras work better.

Charles asks…

Does anyone have a Canon PowerShot A460 Digital Camera?

I have a few questions:

How good is it?
Can you record movies on it — with sound?
I’m not a huge enthusiast or anything; I just want something fun — would this be any good?

If the answer to these questions is “no”, can anyone recommend to me a good, cheap digital camera/camcorder?
Also, is the software for the camera compatible with vista?

Pip answers:

This is a very entry-level camera, and the phrase “you get what you pay for” more than likely will apply here. It’s a 5 megapixel camera, which is a little behind the curve in the modern digital camera market, and it has a 2″ LCD, which is also rather small (2.5″ is really standard, and there’s actually a significant difference between the two sizes), so composing pictures and shooting video may be a challenge for you.

In terms of video, yes, it does shoot with sound, but the maximum clip length you can shoot is 3 minutes at the lowest quality, so I don’t know if that would affect your decision.

I can understand wanting a budget camera, but I feel that this camera is just behind the market curve, and so you are purchasing a camera that is already virtually obsolete at this point.

If I may make a few recommendations, save up a little bit and consider these cameras:

Canon Powershot A560- the successor to the camera you asked about, 7.1 megapixels, their newest image processor (DIGIC III) with face detection built-in (this is a new “must-have” for digital cameras), and a 2.5″ LCD. $135

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ6- 7.2 megapixels, 6x optical zoom (2x more than the Canon), but the same 2.0″ LCD. This camera, however, comes with Panasonic’s OIS (Optical Image Stabilization), which can help get sharper pictures in lower light. $140

I think if you saved up $25-30, you could get a budget camera that is right at current market technology levels.

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Your Questions About Nikon Digital Cameras Costco

Charles asks…

what digital camera is better?

ok so i am planning on getting a new digital camera, and i don’t know what type to get? casio, canon, kodak, polaroid, nikon, etc. ???????????

Pip answers:

A Casio Exilim ex-s10! Its a super slim 10.1 megapixel camera. I have this camera in blue and I love it. It works with Windows Vista, Windows xp, windows 2000, and Mac OS x (10.1-10.4).

It works with Quick time and iPhoto. You can drag and drop videos directly into iTunes. It also has a Best Shot. Best Shot gives you different settings that specialize in which picture you are taking, Even video. It has Youtube capture mode.

I got it at Costco for $250. Only because it was a bundle. It came with a memory card, case, charger, connection cable to your t.v., and usb connecter.

It’s cheaper if you just buy the camera itself.

Linda asks…

What kind of digital camera should I buy? We have never had one and are looking for one to start off with.?

Pip answers:

Here are a few things to consider when looking for a compact, point & shoot digital camera:

1). Requires regular AA batteries or not? There are many cameras that all you do is recharge, (like a cellphone), the camera. I like cameras that use AA batteries. You can buy rechargeable AA batteries for your main source of power, and buy non-recharge ones in a pinch anywhere, should you find your camera without power, instead of being without a camera to use while it’s hooked up being recharged. (What happens if you need to replace the lithium ion battery? Might be costly to replace and not easy to find). It’s true that digicameras use up non-recharge batteries quickly. But you can buy rechargeable ones and they last a long time. It should be a must to buy rechargeable batteries (with it’s charger). There are some rechargeable AA (stick with the name brands), that now recharges in an hour, or even less! (Remember to figure in the cost to buy rechargeable AA battery and battery recharger).

2). Media Memory Format? SD (Secure Data either MMC [media memory card] or HC [High Capacity]) I know for sure this ‘memory card’ is used by Canon, Kodak digicams; and I’m sure they’re other brands. Then there are other brands who require xD and CF (Compact Flash) and Sony uses exclusively their memory ‘sticks’ (pro Duo and other different configurations). The pros for having a camera that uses SD card, is that they are also used in other electronic devices and are the most affordable media memory storage.

3). An optical viewfinder is very useful for those times when it’s difficult to see your subject on your screen, i.e. A distant face in a crowd; too sunny to see subjects in the LCD screen; fast action shots. It can help conserve power of your camera by periodically turning off the LCD screen and using the optical viewfinder. This feature seems to be important to some, (me included), but to others, not necessary. (This is where IS [Image Stabilization] comes in. Helpful if your camera does not have an optical vierfinder.)

4). Don’t get sucked in by the more MP (megapixels [10 and above]), the camera has, the better. It is not always the case. 5-6 mp is sufficient for most.

5). Optical zoom of at least 3-4x. Higher optical zoom, a bonus. Don’t be fooled by a high digital zoom number. Opitical is what you’re looking for.

6). IS (image stabilization) and face detection? This is a personal choice for what an individual wants, and on some models, it’s a standard feature.

7). Camera size: Compact or subcompact? You might compromise in some functions and options when you go with a small and sleek camera. Camera size will dictate what functions and features will go into the camera. This too, is a personal choice for an individual.

Don’t forget to consider in your budget: Rechargeable batteries and extra memory cards/sticks. Good to have if your camera also takes video. Nothing more frustrating than running out for memory space on your card/stick.

In no particular order, here are some of the best and popular brands: stick with Canon, Nikon, Sony, Olympus, Fuji, Kodak, Pentax. They have models that can fit any budget.

These are the basics when researching and shopping for a digicam. Don’t worry about other features, they all have pre-set settings for a given photo situation, and some fun ones too. Most, if not all also take video.

If you do your research on cameras, then go to your local electronic/camera merchants like Best Buy, Circuit City, Ritz, etc…or even Target, Wal-Mart, Kmart, Costco, Sam’s Club, or consider your office supply stores that have a camera dept., OfficeMax, Staples, Office Depot. Or check on-line. A good place is B&H.

I hope my answer wasn’t too overwhelming. It can get a bit overwhelming to go see all the cameras and not know what you should be looking for. Start with these basics, and you’ll do fine.

Happy digital camera shopping!

Maria asks…

Nikon Coolpix S560 digital camera?

what do you think about this camera? If anyone has it let me know how it is.

http://www.nikonusa.com/Find-Your-Nikon/Product/Digital-Camera/26120/COOLPIX-S560.html

http://www.costco.com/Browse/ProductSet.aspx?Prodid=11311926&search=s560&Mo=0&cm_re=1_en-_-Top_Left_Nav-_-Top_search&lang=en-US&Nr=P_CatalogName:BC&Sp=S&N=5000043&whse=BC&Dx=mode+matchallpartial&Ntk=Text_Search&Dr=P_CatalogName:BC&Ne=4000000&D=s560&Ntt=s560&No=0&Ntx=mode+matchallpartial&Nty=1&topnav=&s=1

Pip answers:

Nikon makes great cameras.

I can’t tell you if YOU will like it, since I don’t know you… And I don’t know how you plan to use it, or what your photography skill is. But for most people, a point-and-shoot digital like this one will be great.

Richard asks…

which is a good canon/nikon digital slr camera? it seems these are the leading brands…?

Pip answers:

One of my boilerplate answers……

Comparing the Nikon D80 vs. Canon 400D/Rebel XTi

Check this page:

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/nikond80/page21.asp

The first thing I notice is that the Canon does not have a spot meter. I thought they added that in the XTi, but I guess past criticism was not heard at Canon.

The Nikon user-definable Auto-ISO is an interesting feature that lets you define a couple of parameters about what’s acceptable to you and what’s not. I don’t think this would be the tie-breaker, though, if you can’t decide between cameras.

The D80 has a pentaprism and the Canon uses mirrors. “They” say that mirrors are getting pretty good, but I would expect the pentaprism to be a brighter viewfinder.

The Nikon lets you do actual multiple exposures in the camera and some people think this is pretty cool.

Click “next” and move to page 22 and you’ll see some image comparisons. Click “next” a couple more times to see more direct comparisons on page 25. Click “next” a couple more times to see some noise level comparisons on page 27. It looks to me like the D80 has actually tamed the noise better than the XTi, but read the comments about image softness.

Click one more time and see that the D80 is clearly the winner in image sharpness.

Go on to the next page and read the conclusions.

You can go to the side-by-side at http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/compare_post.asp?method=sidebyside&cameras=canon_eos400d%2Cnikon_d80&show=all and also click on “Our in depth review” and “Read owner opinions” for each camera.

The last line in the Nikon D80 review reads, “If you’re a more discerning photographer who can see the advantages offered by the ‘all round’ D80 you may well consider the extra money well spent.”

The last line in the Canon 400D/XTi review reads, “Thanks to its blood line and low price the EOS 400D will no doubt be a huge success for Canon. However unlike the EOS 350D, for me it’s no longer the first or obvious choice, so before jumping on the bandwagon make sure you’ve weighed up the competition.”

In other words, you’ve selected with the two best cameras in their price class. Canon is probably saving a little money using their CMOS sensor and this will bring them some market share. Whether the sensor and images are better or not is open to wild debate based on personal preferences. Whether one camera feels better in your hands might just be the determining factor. You have got to go to a real camera store and handle them both. I guess Costco, Circuit City or Best Buy would also have actual samples on display, but you may not get as much help from the staff.

As far as lens choice, I’d rather see you start with one decent lens instead of the kit lens, although Nikon’s kit lens (18-55) has actually tested pretty well. Canon’s new 18-55 Series II lens is okay, also. For Nikon, I like the Nikkor AF-S 18-70 f/3.5-4.5G ED DX. This costs about $300. I bought this for my wife on her D50 and liked it so much (for the money) that I bought it as a backup for one of my cameras. Nikon is now offering the D80 in a kit with a very nice 18-135 lens, although it does have a polycarbonate (“plastic”) mount that might begin to wear if you buy additional lenses and change them often. For Canon, one of our best answerers (Panacea) recommends the EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM. This costs about $500, so there goes the $200 price difference.

Of course, you’ll need a decent memory card and I recommend a genuine Sandisk Ultra II (60X) or Extreme III (133X) of at least 1GB – preferable 2 GB – for either camera. Lexar is another excellent card supplier and they have the “Professional” 133X as well as the Platinum 80X to choose from. Both Lexar and Sandisk come with image recovery software and limited lifetime warranties.
…..
The February 2007 issue of Popular Photography has an article where they compared the top 10 MP DSLR’s, including the D80 and XTi. The Nikon D80 was BEST in Image Quality, Control and System Flexibility and the Canon Rebel XTi (400D) tied with the D80 for best in System Flexibility, but won no other categories.

Http://www.popphoto.com/cameras/3569/10mp-dslr-shootout.html

…..
Here’s another reference from outside the photographic press. Consumer reports compared the Nikon D80, Canon Rebel XTi and Sony Alpha. Personally, I’d say that the Nikon came out on top here, also. It beats the Sony in “noise-free ISO” with an acceptable rating at ISO 1600 (kind of optimistic, I think…) compared to the Sony’s ISO 400. It beats the Canon (in my opinion) by having a spot meter that the Canon does not offer.

Http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/electronics-computers/news-electronics-computers/november-2006/shootout-10-megapixel-digital-slr-cameras-11-06/overview/0611_digital-slr-shoot-out.htm

…..
Nikon D80 vs. Canon Rebel XTi (400D) vs. Sony Alpha A100

http://www.digitalcamerainfo.com/content/Canon-Rebel-XTi-vs-Nikon-D80-vs-Sony-Alpha-A100-Head-to-Head-to-Head-Digital-Camera-Review-.htm [Note the navigation menu near the top of the review]
…..

OR – IF YOU ARE IN THE BIG DOLLAR LEAGUE – SEE THIS:

Nikon D200 vs. Canon 5D

http://www.digitalcamerainfo.com/content/Nikon-D200-vs-Canon-EOS-5D-Head-to-Head-Review-.htm [Note the navigation menu near the top of the review]

Jenny asks…

What do you think of the Nikon Coolpix S230 Digital Camera?

My family and I are looking in to buying a new digital camera for the vacation we are taking in a few weeks.
We have been looking at the Nikon Coolpix S230

http://www.nikonusa.com/Find-Your-Nikon/Product/Digital-Camera/26144/COOLPIX-S230.html

We think it looks like a nice camera for what we will be doing with it(which isn’t too much. Just taking family photos.. things like that)
In your opinion.. is it a good camera? Worth the money?
It will most likely be me, my husband and my 14 year old daughter using it.

Would you recommend any other cameras instead?

Pip answers:

Yea my friend had that camera and it takes great pictures. I love the quality of the photos when you print them out.

She bought hers from Costco for like $195.00, but she’s a member at their store.

It’s really good for everyday use and to upload photos on your computer. I definitely reccommend it.

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Your Questions About Digital Cameras Best Buy

Mandy asks…

What is the best digital camera you can buy with no budget in mind?

Lets say there is no budget, what is the best digital camera you can buy for shooting stuff indoors, mostly at concerts….
Seriously looking to buy this camera, for a project I’m starting in the Fall, that will be mostly done indoors.
$8000 is to much haha. Didnt know such things existed. I’m looking at $5000 at the most =P

Pip answers:

You are asking the wrong question. For good results in a concert venue with no flash, the lens is the most important purchase. Most of the mid to upper bodies have similar performance, they don’t matter nearly as much as the lens.

You obviously have little experience – I strongly suggest hiring some equipment and trying it in situ before committing to a purchase. You might find that what you were hoping to achieve will not be viable, and it would better to know that before you invest a substantial amount of money.

Also, if you are intending to shoot without the approval of the promoters, you will very likely find a problem with using professional equipment.

Donald asks…

What is the best brand in digital cameras than 14 MEGAPIXEL S?

I AM FOR DIGITAL CAMERA buy one is the best brand in digital cameras than 14 MEGAPIXEL S:
the olympus
The Sony Cybershot
or Canon ¿??

Pip answers:

Canon is the best for cameras.

Helen asks…

What would be a good digital camera to buy?

I am considering in buying a digital camera and I really want a good one that is sweatproof, waterproof, has really god zooming…. etc etc. So what exactly should someone be looking for in a camera? Can anyone sugest to me any type of good cameras and any good websites? Thank you very much in advance.

Pip answers:

The Best Sweatproof and Waterproof camera at the moment is the Olympus Stylus 1030SW. You can see it at Amazon here: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0011E87RM/?tag=amazon-digital-cameras-20

The optical zoom is limited to just 3.6x Optical which isn’t very long.

Another option would be to buy a “Non-Waterproof” camera and then buy a Camera Housing for it. The Camera Housing fits over the camera and provides protection from water. You can view some of Canon Camera Housings here: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=search&A=search&Q=&ci=0&sb=ps&sq=desc&sortDrop=Relevance&ac=&bsi=&bhs=t&shs=waterproof+case&ci=5237&at=Brand_Canon&basicSubmit=Submit+Query

Hope that helps :)

Best Regards,
Dusty

James asks…

what is the best digital camera to buy ?

I want to buy a digital camera, nothing too expensive but just something I could take on holiday with me. My price range is £150 and lower. I want something with lots of good features. Any suggestions.

Pip answers:

Depends if you want a “Point & Shoot Pop In Your Pocket” compact camera or “Complete Control Mega-Zoom SLR-style”…

Sandy asks…

Need help with a Nikon D40 digital camera and a wide angle lens?

I have a Nikon D40 digital camera and bought a wide angle lens. I don’t know a lot about photography, I had to use this kind of camera for a job. My photos are supposed to be set for the widest angle for the lens (24mm). Is there a way to set this up using my camera menu? Help! Thanks.

Pip answers:

No use the zoom ring on the lens. There will be a crop factor in play here the 24 will be like a 36 mm lens.

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Your Questions About Backing Up Digital Photos In The Field

Mark asks…

Digital camera: old top-end vs new low-end ?

I am looking for a used super zoom or realllllly cheap Digital SLR, but all the reviews are from when a camera was new on the market. So…how do I compair a 10+ Y.O. Nikon D100 that went for 2K new, with a referbished new(ish) panasonic Lumix. Obviously, I’m not expecting miracles, but it would be nice to shoot some pics of the grandkids on the little league field and be able to get a decent 8 X 10 print (or jpeg for the computer monitor). I used to do my own 35mm B&W developing wayyyyy back in the day…but digital tech is beyond me.

Pip answers:

Digital photography is no different than 35 mm photography .. Actually easier since you do not have to change film to increase the ISO or white balance.

A D100 has s sensor the is huge when compared to a P&S camera.

What 35 mm system do you have now? Just buy a good used DSLR that uses the same lenses you have now. The skills you need to expose the sensor are identical to the ones you use shooting your 35 mm.

The “digital tech” you mention has all to do with your computer and the digital darkroom in the form of a photo program that is different and you will need to learn.

There are two type digital cameras

1) DSLR, just like your 35 mm camera, fully adjustable, large sensor and interchangeable lenses
2) P&S (like the Panasonic you mentioned) that decide all your exposures for you, have tiny sensors and NO interchangeable lenses

Pick the camera that will do what you want … Forget about digital tech in cameras … If anything it only makes taking photos eaiser

Helen asks…

Hey guys! What do you think of my photos?

http://www.flickr.com/photos/emmydeloach/

I don’t edit them. Most are 35mm film with a few exceptions (polaroid, phone, digital).

Pip answers:

Hey there!

I think a lot your photographs are great and have huge potential. I like the fact you give your photos a ‘film’ look and feel. The framing is quite free and I really like the depth of field. It gives them a good vintage feel.

One thing I would suggest to you, especially in some of the portraits where you have other features around (eg http://www.flickr.com/photos/emmydeloach/4519196370/), try to widen out a bit more. Include some features in the derelict house – the window in that shot shot either be in it, or should not. Personally, I would try to make it a bit of a feature with all that light coming through it. Maybe even a really textured or interesting wall for your friend to stand against. Negative space also works very well when taking shots like this.

Fantastic Photostream. I will keep checking back. The starfish one is definitely one of my favourites. The depth of field and focusing is spot on.

Jenny asks…

which camera is the best camera for back packer with the budget under $300?

consider the facts of qualites of the photo..

Pip answers:

You can consider Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ35 12.1MP Digital Camera
* 27mm wide-angle Leica DC Vario-Elmarit lens;
* 18x optical zoom with POWER O.I.S.
* HD movies with 1280 x 720-pixel resolution; AVCHD Lite format

http://www.amazon.com/Panasonic-DMC-FZ35-Digital-Optical-Stabilized/dp/B002IKLJU0/?tag=ya-ans-camera-20

http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?ff3=4&pub=5574865779&toolid=10001&campid=5336440665&customid=nktprk&mpre=http%3a%2f%2fphotography.shop.ebay.com%2fi.html%3f_nkw%3dPanasonic%2bLumix%2bDMC-FZ35%26_sacat%3d31388%26_dmpt%3dDigital_Cameras%26_odkw%3dpanasonic%2bfh20%26_osacat%3d31388%26_trksid%3dp3286.c0.m270.l1313

Canon PowerShot SX210IS 14.1 MP Digital Camera
* Powerful 14x optical zoom with Optical Image Stabilizer;
* 28mm wide-angle lens;* HD shooting capability at 720p

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Delectronics&field-keywords=+Canon+PowerShot+SX210IS&x=0&y=0&ih=1_0_0_0_0_0_0_0_0_0.3518_1&fsc=-1&tag=ya-ans-camera-20

http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?ff3=4&pub=5574865779&toolid=10001&campid=5336440665&customid=nktprk&mpre=http%3a%2f%2fshop.ebay.com%2fi.html%3f_nkw%3dCanon%2bPowerShot%2bSX210IS%26_sacat%3d0%26_dmpt%3dBatteries_Chargers%26_odkw%3du1010%26_osacat%3d0%26_trksid%3dp3286.c0.m270.l1313

Richard asks…

need help w/ shallow depth of field NIKON D70S?

hi i have a nikon d70s and was messing around w/ it and was wondering how to create a shallow/great depth of field with it. i know on occasions it does it automatically on manual when i zoom in close and the background is far from the subject but i dunno how to do it with by fiddling w/ the aperture. also how do i use the DOF preview?

Pip answers:

It’s going to be darn hard to “de-focus” too much using a digital camera while keeping the main subject in sharp focus. The smaller the sensor, the greater depth of field you will have. Generally speaking, the smaller the camera, the smaller the sensor. Most of the pictures you take with a digital camera are quite sharp from near to far distances and there is a reason for that which I will explain.

While we speak in terms of the 35 mm equivalency of digital lenses, don’t forget that the digital sensors are usually smaller than a full-format 35 mm frame. The ACTUAL focal length of the lens is more towards the wide angle end and at these focal lengths, the background is going to almost always be in pretty sharp focus. In other words, if you WANT to defocus the background, you are going to have to work pretty hard at it. You would have to zoom to the longer end of the lens and set the aperture open as wide as it will go, if your camera even allows you to control the aperture, and get pretty close to your main subject while having the background a fair distance away.

For the greatest depth of field, you want to use the smaller apertures (larger numbers) and for greatest “blur,” you want to use the larger apertures (smaller numbers). Set your camera on “A” for aperture priority. Turn the front command dial to set the aperture to something like f/2.8 or 3.5. This will give your the shallowest depth of field. If you are not getting the result you really want, zoom your lens out and back away from the main subject. This will enhace the out-of-focus appearance of the background. Do just the opposite if you want everything in focus.

For depth of field preview, just press in the little button to the right of your lens. (with your right hand) See page 76 of the manual for a picture.

Here’s a sample photo showing great use of depth of field. Http://www.flickr.com/photos/samfeinstein/408446616/ I didn’t record the aperture on Flickr (I’ll have to do that now…), but it’s f/5.6. This would not normally limit the depth of field very much, but I am racked out to 200 mm and I am only about 2-3 feet from the subject. The closer you are to the near focus limit of your lens, the more you will blur the background.

David asks…

Has digital photography era actually degraded the photography?

I see people with digital cameras clicking hundreds of photos out of which none of them are worth preserving.
I have answered questions where people hold a digital camera and expect it to do everything on its own.
My neighbours use digital camera and their images are now lying in the card, hard disc, few on internet servers and a lot of them have been lost too.

My impression of the general population is that when the digital cameras were not in existance, people valued every frame and worked hard to create something. Those who had point and shoots, tried to learn and get the best out of it. A single roll of film gave prints worth keeping for long time.

Now I see people buying the costliest camera they can hoping to create photographs like Ansel Adams without even reading the instruction manual and understanding how to switch off the camera.

Do you also feel that digital has actually degraded the quality of photography ?

Pip answers:

Before digital nobody took a bad photograph, ever, even with a compact or disposable. Even though there were cameras with programme modes and aperture priority from the mid 70s, until digital not one single person actually used them.

Do you not remember seeing people at partys holding a tape measure from the focal plane of their disposable cameras so they optimised the depth of field for the fixed focus lens? I know I do.

I have a film EOS camera, and it can shoot 8fps with the PB-E2 attached. Of course I never use that mode, as that is cheating. As a true photographer every frame has to count. I refocus after every shot (I actually asked canon to take the USM motor out of all my L lenses) and only ever meter with a hand held unit, and even then it’s a Cds unit, as these modern, accurate, reliable units are also, to the true photographer, cheating.

I show every body all my pictures, even the ones that didn’t work, as only then can they get a true idea of my talent. To cherry pick would be cheating.

I insist on contact prints only, as enlargements: yup, cheating, I can also minimise the risk of some unscrupulous printer dodging and burning, or even worse grading the print per slide, no no no, it has to be as it was on the film or thats cheating.

I don’t get all these cameras with auto modes? Why do folk want a camera that focuses manually, even racking moving subjects? Half the fun is wasting half your shots. And built in exposure meters? Sacrelige. Whats wrong with sunny 16 thoughtfully applied (remember your filters now)?

And so to the worst bit: Digital. Who in their right mind wants to see a goal on a website moments after its been scored? Whats wrong with carrying chemicals and dark box everywhere with you? Keeps you fit.

And yes I am kidding.

Digital is great. IMHO film is better for many applications, including landscapes, but for most people, most of the time, digital is great.

Yes folk can overshoot, but that’s their call.

The folk who take it seriously will still carry a tripod, will probably use manual mode, will understand the effects of the aperture and shutter, will understand hyperfocal distance and perspective.

I think it absolutely hypocritical that traditional photographers who have bitched for years about not being seen as ‘art’ now take a snobby stance against digital users.

Most of the great photographers used the best technology available to them at the time. Could Robert Capa have taken his civil war shots with a plate camera? Was Cartier Bresson cheating by not using a large format camera? What about all the vietmam pictures taken in OH MY GOD colour on Nikon F’s with OH MY GOD a light meter!

The skill is in knowing how to work your camera (i.e. Get it to take a picture you like) understanding how to compose an interesting image, and knowing what to throw away and what to keep.

I learned on film, the hard way, the expensive way, but it made me what I am and didn’t diminish my love for the craft of ours.

If I had at the time the opportunity to view my images straight away, to see the effects of zooming with my feet, the effects of the aperture, the effects of deliberately under or over exposing, the effects of spot metering, would I have taken it?

Erm, Yeah!

Now that I have a digital SLR do i still dig out my film body and find a dark corner to load a roll of velvia? Do I still bump the meter iso slightly lower to over saturate? Do I still pick my location based on the time of day and where the sun is? Do I still check the tide tables and shipping forecast? Do I still lug my tripod and ball head and spirit level and cable release and filters up a hill in time for dusk? Do I still get excited when the processed box of slides drops through the door? Do I still leave my scanner on 16x pass, 16bit, 7200dpi and go back the following morning?

Yes.

Do I take my digitised shots into photoshop for tweaking?

Yes.

I am so fed up with the whole digital vs film and digital is bad doctrine.
It’s such a diverse discipline that you know what: each to their own.

The folk who don’t read their manuals? Fine. Up to them.
If they are getting better results then the problem isn’t them, maybe it’s your technique.

Why does it have to be a chore. I enjoy the whole manual bit, and my methodology is the same whether I’m on digital or on film. I get some hits, some misses, the hits make me glow more than the missed hurt.

I used to go to a camera club and there was one bloke there who’s first question to any new member was “What kind of camera do you have”

Not:
“What kind of photography do you do?”
“Who are your influences?”
“Can you show me some of your work?”

And as he always had the latest and best gear (though as I recall quite dull images) he would follow it up with “ha ha ha, you can’t take decent pictures with a XXXXXX”

My advice: concentrate on enjoying your own photography, however you do it. Cameras have never been better in technological terms (no matter the format) and never cheaper in real terms.

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Your Questions About Nikon Vs Canon Vs Sony Digital Camera

Nancy asks…

Nikon D80 vs Sony a100 vs Canon XTi?

Im an art student and i need a SLR camera

Pip answers:

Let me add a vote for the D80.

The February 2007 issue of Popular Photography has an article where they compared the top 10 MP DSLR’s. I took the scores and ranked the cameras similar to the way Formula 1 gives championship points. I just gave 5 for 1st place down to 1 for last place, splitting the difference when cameras tied in their catagories.

They evaluated Image Quality (giving this twice as much weight as anything else), Ease of Use, Control, and System Flexibility.

The final order and my scores are:

Nikon D80 – 17.5 points
- BEST in Image Quality, Control and System Flexibility
Canon Rebel XTi (400D) – 13.5 points
- Tied for best in System Flexibility
Pentax K10D – 11 points
- Tied for best in Ease of Use
Samsung GX10 – 11 points
- Tied for best in Ease of Use
Sony Alpha 100 – 7 points
- LAST in Image Quality, Ease of Use and System Flexibility.”

Then again, this is the same magazine that put the Sony Alpha 100 dead last in this comparison named it the camera of the year in the previous issue! (In a follow-up to this seeming error, Pop Photo published the explanation that only the D80 and the Sony had been tested by the end-of-year deadline for choosing the Camera of the Year. Sony won on the strength of low price and built-in image stabilization. The other 3 that beat Sony in shoot-out were not tested until after the Camera of the Year was selected, because they were not yet available.)

Go to the original question and read the responses for more opinions.

Http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index;_ylt=AiG00eHyd0oq5b.X7J.jiULzy6IX?qid=20070113133139AAHWJY0

If you want to get the “best” for the real world, consider the Nikon D200 or Canon 30D if you can afford it. For about $300-500 less, look at the results of the recent PopPhoto test and choose from that list according to your taste.

Personally, I use a Nikon D200 and would recommend it without hesitation to someone who has some knowledge of photography. For someone who wants the “best,” but is starting with somewhat of an “entry level” knowledge base, I’d suggest the Nikon D80.

There are people out there who will state their preference for the Canon cameras and I will not argue with them. The Canon 30D and 400D are excellent cameras as well.

You would have to visit a camera store or camera department and pick them up and see what you think.

This review is now available online at:

http://www.popphoto.com/cameras/3569/10mp-dslr-shootout.html

Here’s another reference from outside the photographic press. Consumer reports compared the Nikon D80, Canon Rebel XTi and Sony Alpha. Personally, I’d say that the Nikon came out on top here, also. It beats the Sony in “noise-free ISO” with an acceptable rating at ISO 1600 (kind of optimistic, I think…) compared to the Sony’s ISO 400. It beats the Canon (in my opinion) by having a spot meter that the Canon does not offer.

Http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/electronics-computers/news-electronics-computers/november-2006/shootout-10-megapixel-digital-slr-cameras-11-06/overview/0611_digital-slr-shoot-out.htm

Here’s another comparison of interest:

http://www.digitalcamerainfo.com/content/Canon-Rebel-XTi-vs-Nikon-D80-vs-Sony-Alpha-A100-Head-to-Head-to-Head-Digital-Camera-Review-.htm

[Note the navigation menu near the top of the review]

The next thing to consider is what lens to start with and where you go from there. If you are new to this, I’d say to just get the “kit” lens, which seems to be the 18-135 lens for the D80, and get started. Once you know where you really want to go with your photography, Nikon has an almost unlimited family of lenses to choose from. If you want to see some examples of Nikon lenses on a 10 MP camera (D200), click on my avatar (the x-ray) and then click on my link to Flickr. Every photo (and there are not too many yet) has the specs for the lens used. The Nikon 60 mm macro is an especially good lens and so is the Nikon 17-55. The 18-200 is more of a fun lens than a great lens, but it does come in handy.

Chris asks…

Which one Should I buy? Nikon D3000 vs Canon Rebel XS vs Sony A230?

I’m about to buy my first entry level DSLR camera, and I want to make the best investment. so I want to know which one is the best talking about: features, image quality, product quality, speed, etc…..
At first I was going for the Sony A230 but…
A friend of mine who is a professional photographer told me to get the Nikon D300
What do you guys think?

Pip answers:

All 3 are excellent cameras but compare the 3 cameras feature and specs (see the 1st link below) and decide what is best for your needs.

In this case I favor the Nikon or Sony since they offer a higher ISO ability which can be very useful in low light situations.

If all else fails, go with the best price. Here is what I just found after a quick look at B&H Photo’s website:

Alpha A230 Digital SLR with 18-55mm Lens – $399 (and free shipping)
D3000 SLR Digital SLR with 18-55mm VR Lens – $460 (and free shipping)
EOS Rebel XS (1000D) DSLR Digital Camera w/18-55mm IS Lens – $499 (and free shipping)

If you have any questions and if you think I can be of help then please do contact me.

Mark

marksablow.com

Joseph asks…

Canon vs. Sony digital camera?

I’ve had a Nikon for 3 or 4 years and I’m ready for a change.

I’m not sure which camera I should get but I know it’s between a Canon and Sony.
Out of these 3 cameras which one would you choose? Or if you have one please tell me how you like it or dislike it!

Canon PowerShot SD1300-IS
Canon PowerShot SD1400-IS
Sony Cyber-shot W330

Thank you :)

Pip answers:

I think you should go with Sony DSC-W330 14.1MP Digital Camera

26mm Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar lens with 4x optical zoom
14.1-megapixel CCD sensor and 3.0-inch LCD screen (230k pixels)
SteadyShot Image Stabilization reduces blur; iAuto mode automatically optimizes camera settings
Smile Shutter technology automatically captures a smile
Card slot for optional Memory Stick Duo media and SD media

http://www.amazon.com/Sony-DSC-W330-Digital-Stabilization-Black/dp/B00328HR58/?tag=srtghl-20

Paul asks…

Sony – Alpha 10.2MP Digital SLR Camera vs Nikon 9437 Digital SLR Camera with 2-Lens Kit and 4GB Memory Card?

I’m so confused which one to buy. If there’s any photographer could help me, please help me to decide. Sony comes with telephoto lens, but Nikon so good in camera technology. Which one should I choose????

Pip answers:

This must be a particular vendor’s catalog number, as there is no Nikon 9437. You answered your own question if you re-read it. The Nikon is a better camera so buy that. We can always buy a new lens, but most of us plan on keeping our DSLR bodies for years and years. This is the core of your system, so buy the best one you can afford.

Here’s my stock answer that may assist you. I will assume (hope) that you are looking at a Nikon D80, because this is the Nikon that is most comparable to the Sony-Alpha.

The February 2007 issue of Popular Photography has an article where they compared the top 10 MP DSLR’s. I took the scores and ranked the cameras similar to the way Formula 1 gives championship points. I just gave 5 for 1st place down to 1 for last place, splitting the difference when cameras tied in their catagories.

They evaluated Image Quality (giving this twice as much weight as anything else), Ease of Use, Control, and System Flexibility.

The final order and my scores are:

Nikon D80 – 17.5 points
- BEST in Image Quality, Control and System Flexibility
Canon Rebel XTi (400D) – 13.5 points
- Tied for best in System Flexibility
Pentax K10D – 11 points
- Tied for best in Ease of Use
Samsung GX10 – 11 points
- Tied for best in Ease of Use
Sony Alpha 100 – 7 points
- LAST in Image Quality, Ease of Use and System Flexibility.”

Then again, this is the same magazine that put the Sony Alpha 100 dead last in this comparison named it the camera of the year in the previous issue! (In a follow-up to this seeming error, Pop Photo published the explanation that only the D80 and the Sony had been tested by the end-of-year deadline for choosing the Camera of the Year. Sony won on the strength of low price and built-in image stabilization. The other 3 that beat Sony in shoot-out were not tested until after the Camera of the Year was selected, because they were not yet available.)

Go to the original question and read the responses for more opinions.

Http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index;_ylt=AiG00eHyd0oq5b.X7J.jiULzy6IX?qid=20070113133139AAHWJY0

If you want to get the “best” for the real world, consider the Nikon D200 or Canon 30D if you can afford it. For about $300-500 less, look at the results of the recent PopPhoto test and choose from that list according to your taste.

Personally, I use a Nikon D200 and would recommend it without hesitation to someone who has some knowledge of photography. For someone who wants the “best,” but is starting with somewhat of an “entry level” knowledge base, I’d suggest the Nikon D80.

There are people out there who will state their preference for the Canon cameras and I will not argue with them. The Canon 30D and 400D are excellent cameras as well. You would have to visit a camera store or camera department and pick them up and see what you think.

This review is available online at:

http://www.popphoto.com/cameras/3569/10mp-dslr-shootout.html

Here’s another reference from outside the photographic press. Consumer reports compared the Nikon D80, Canon Rebel XTi and Sony Alpha. Personally, I’d say that the Nikon came out on top here, also. It beats the Sony in “noise-free ISO” with an acceptable rating at ISO 1600 (kind of optimistic, I think…) compared to the Sony’s ISO 400. It beats the Canon (in my opinion) by having a spot meter that the Canon does not offer.

Http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/electronics-computers/news-electronics-computers/november-2006/shootout-10-megapixel-digital-slr-cameras-11-06/overview/0611_digital-slr-shoot-out.htm

Here’s another comparison of interest:

http://www.digitalcamerainfo.com/content/Canon-Rebel-XTi-vs-Nikon-D80-vs-Sony-Alpha-A100-Head-to-Head-to-Head-Digital-Camera-Review-.htm

[Note the navigation menu near the top of the review]

The next thing to consider is what lens to start with and where you go from there. If you are new to this, I’d say to just get the “kit” lens, which seems to be the 18-135 lens for the D80, and get started. Once you know where you really want to go with your photography, Nikon has an almost unlimited family of lenses to choose from.

Steven asks…

Nikon vs Canon lens for a Sony Nex 5?

http://www.amazon.com/Nikon-55-200mm-VR-Vibration-Reduction/dp/B000O161X0/ref=wl_it_dp_o?ie=UTF8&coliid=I2UZT6LXQPLTFM&colid=5O3IBK57ADIQ

vs

http://www.amazon.com/Canon-55-250mm-4-0-5-6-Telephoto-Digital/dp/B0011NVMO8/ref=wl_it_dp_o?ie=UTF8&coliid=I1SFW1R9S7T0I4&colid=5O3IBK57ADIQ

New or refurbished?

Looking to improve my zoom on my Sony Nex 5.

Pip answers:

Neither. Although there are adapters available that will allow using a Canon or Nikon lens on your NEX-5 the reality is they really aren’t worth the hassle. Manual focus, stop-down metering plus you have to be careful to choose a Nikon or Canon lens with an aperture ring – and neither of the lenses you’re looking at has one. No aperture ring means no way to control the aperture – unless you are willing to spend as much or more on an adapter as either lens costs.

MTF has a Nikon G to Sony E adapter that has its own aperture for $375.95. You’ll still have to manually focus the lens and use stop-down metering.

Bower has a Canon EF/EF-S to Sony E adapter that has its own aperture for $174.95. You’ll still have to manually focus the lens and use stop-down metering.

The Sony E mount 18-200mm f3.5-6.3 zoom lens which is designed for the NEX-5 is $799.99.

Above prices from B&H – http://www.bhphotovideo.com

My advice is to save your money and buy the lens designed for your camera – the Sony 18-200mm
zoom.

NOTE: If you aren’t sure what stop-down metering is just do a web search. Trust me, it isn’t something you’ll want to do once you learn what it is.

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Your Questions About Digital Photography Basics

Helen asks…

What are some good web sites for photography education?

I just received a new Canon Digital Rebel SLR, and I want to know about the manual features and the differences between lenses, etc. I want to learn how to get the best pictures, what modes to use in certain situations, etc.

Pip answers:

I think the best site for learning photography basics is http://www.photo.net

If you’re already comfortable with the basics, make sure you read the manual. Canon Digital SLR manuals are generally well written.

Bob Atkins’s site has lots of information on Canon Lenses including this helpful one:

http://www.bobatkins.com/photography/digital/10d300dlenses.html

For learning more about digital photography, http://www.luminous-landscape.com … And http://www.normankoren.com are also good resources.

Richard asks…

In what ways is a digital SLR camera better than a regular digital camera?

SLR cameras are more professional-like? And using a digital SLR camera is easier..than a regular camera?

Is it cheating for professional photographers to ‘edit’ their photos using photoshop or change the saturation, size etc?

Pip answers:

SLR cameras are used by professionals; more so than any other camera type. This makes them, in a way, more professional-like, as you put it. This leads a large number of misguided individuals to make the illogical inference that if they own an slr they will, without any input or effort from themselves, produce professional-level photographs. This is a huge mistake. Using an slr is not easier than using a basic point and shoot digital camera, which is what I assume you mean by `regular`. You need to know the basics of photography to be able to use a slr to its full potential; without this knowledge you have wasted your money.

Photographers have manipulated photographs since the beginning of photography; Digital manipulation is merely an easier way of doing something that has been around for over 150 years. The ethics of this have been the subject of debate over most of that period, Where you draw the line is a matter of personal preference and attitude.

Linda asks…

What are the essentials for wedding photography?

I have the basics, a nice dslr, various lenses, and I’m working on getting a nice tripod. But what else? I know a good quality flash would be beneficial. And for any professionals, what is a good way to get started with a portfolio for weddings. I mean how do I get my first material to show the client I can produce quality images?

Pip answers:

When I started out I shot a wedding for a friend, at the elbow of another professional, with the understanding that I would not offer any of the photos to the couple. You can also shoot a wedding for a friend for free and give them copies of the prints. You then make up a sample album, write your price list, get a business license, and hang out your shingle.

After years of carting around all sorts of combinations of cameras, lenses, and lights I finally settled on a 35mm SLR with a 28-80 zoom lens, a sturdy tripod, two automatic flashes with stand mounts, a light stand, a slave unit, and a long PC cord. I also had a matte box with mattes, a fog filter, a star filter, and some other effect filters. Sometimes if the customer requested it I would take a 6×7 foot painted background and another lightstand to hold it, but I didn’t advertise this option.

The secret to shooting weddings is to travel LIGHT. You don’t want to be lugging heavy equipment, or so much equipment that it takes you forever to set up and tear down. Most of the shots you will be doing will be simple “bang box,” with flash on camera. The off-camera flash shots come when you’re doing the group shots after the ceremony, or if you’re doing some cutesy-poo closeup portrait-y stuff.

With digital, you can take a laptop with you to the reception, display the images from the ceremony, and take orders then and there when the excitement is high. If you have a digital projector you can also set a time right after the honeymoon when you throw a party at the bride’s house, provide the soft drinks and snacks, pass out order forms with the pricelist printed on the other side, and show the pictures to all their friends and family at once. That’s the way to make some really big orders.

You will need to make friends with a really good lab for your prints, and find some album manufacturers and get samples and pricelists. Ideally, you want enough stuff to make a good window display, so that they will get enthusiastic about buying all the pretty stuff you are showing.

Susan asks…

What kind of camera should a soon to be photography student purchase?

I am a soon to be photography student and I am more than curious as to what kind of camera I should purchase or what kind of specifications I should look for in a camera. Also, what other equipment (lenses etc.) would be most suitable? Also I would be more than thankful if you answered why that particular item would be suitable.

Pip answers:

I think you should look at what your course requires. Film or digital, both? I bought this fancy point and shoot digital slr before I started my course only to find out later 1st yr photography was all film, I needed a standard 35mm slr camera with a 50mm lens and tonnes of bw and slide film. It was the best purchase I’ve made in my life, cos you do learn the basics and looking at the film you do learn your mistakes (why was that picture dark, should of used a higer f stop). My fancy point and shoot was given to my mum.

George asks…

Why does my school require students to take a film photography course as a prerequisite to all others?

I don’t deny that people still shoot in film, and I know that the controls are nearly identical from film to digital on newer SLRs, but why do they make us take a film class before we can move onto digital? The majority of my classmates will, I assume, be working in digital after this class.

I’ve been told that this isn’t unusual, that many programs require film and darkroom experience before moving to digital. Still – what’s the benefit?!

Pip answers:

Film photography is where you will learn to master the basics. You will have a much better understanding of the relationship between f/ stop, shutter speed, and film speed when you are forced to deal with a permanent image on film. You have understand why an overexposed negative yields a very light print, why an underexposed negarive yields a very dark print. You will learn what techniques you can use to compensate for underexposure or overexposure.

Working in a physical darkroom, if you’re so lucky, will also give you the foundation for why you do the kinds of things you do with a digital darkroom on your computer.

If all you ever want to be is a snap shot taking photographer, then learning photography from the ground up is a waste of time. But if you want to be a solid professional or a highly skilled amature photographer, then you need a solid foundation from which to build your vocation (or avocation).

Take the time to master the basics and you can master any area of photography. By not learning film, you are ultimately limiting you potential as a photographer.

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Your Questions About Sony Digital Camera Software

Michael asks…

which is the bestest desktop computer and which digital camera will be right one?

it’s have 3 or 4 gb ram
good quality picture
brand will we like lenovo or you can give the name brands
it have windows xp or vista because in windows 7 some software‘s are not running and games also.
and for superb gaming and graphic card will the good one.

and the digital camera‘s brands like fujifilm,sony.
and it’s have panaramic images optical zoom will much better.and it stores uto 2gb.

Pip answers:

For camera, as you mentioned, the sony’s cyber shot panoramic camera will be a good choice.
And sony’s dsc h55 has upto 10x optical zoom.
Only go for sony in terms of digital cams.
Storage in almost all digital camera’s have 2gb storage.

For desktop.

Gofor these:=-

Ram – Trancsend 4gb ddr3 ram.
Processor – Intel core i7 processor.
Video card – Nvidia geforce 9800 gt 1gb X 2
Motherboard – MSI H55-GD65
Cabinet – i-ball
Mouse – razor

Ruth asks…

How do I transfer Digital Video to DVD?

I Have a sony digital video camera, and wish to transfer the video onto DVD discs.
The camera has a USB socket, and was supplied with a USB cable to connect it to a pc. I dont want to do any fancy editing, just copy tapes to discs.
If I connevt the camera to my laptop, is this an easy thing to do? I dont want to get any software especially for this, I was hoping that Windows Movie Maker would be all that I need. If anyone can give me any help at all, I would be grateful.
Cheers!

Pip answers:

How ever you do it DONT bugger up the original tapes!!!

If you wipe all the precious memories on them I fear your life will not be worth living!!

Get it done soon though – you’ve only had 3 years to work out how to do it!!!

Chris asks…

How do you change the size of your photos for uploading?

I have a Sony Cyber-shot digital camera. It’s the first digital camera I’ve ever owned. Love it. Except I’ve hit a snag in it’s use:

I want to upload photos to a forum I frequent. The picture dimensions and file size are much too big though. How do I change it so that I can upload the photos?

I can view the photos on either the software that came with the camera or Windows Media Center.

Pip answers:

As you can probably guess, the photos simply have to be downsized in a photo editing program. It is a simple, fast, easy matter to do in Photoshop, but I have no idea about the Sony software. My guess would be that the software that came with the camera should have a sizing option. You are going to have to study the help guide for the software or look around in it for some kind of image sizing dialog. For instance, in Photoshop, there is a tab at the top of the page that says IMAGE. Scrolling down under that is “Image Size”. You then open that and you can input any size you want for the photo. There is probably something similar in your software.

If you do find a sizing function, here are some good numbers to put in. Set the longest side of the photo to 700 pixels. Let the other dimension of the photo set itself. Set the resolution (PPI) number to 72. Set JPEG compression to 5. This will give you an excellent photo for web use, but it will be vastly smaller in file size than your original.

BE SURE you do a SAVE AS after your photo resize so you DO NOT overwrite your original photo with the smaller version.

Steve

Maria asks…

SONY CAMERA SOFTWARE?

I have a Sony digital camera model DSC-W55, during my move I believe I lost my software disk. So, now I can’t upload any pictures from my camera onto my computer without the software. Does anyone know where I can go online to download it? I tried to the Sony site, but it didn’t have it. :/

Pip answers:

Digital cameras do not require software to download pics. You can get an external USB card reader (10.00) and open in MyComputer, copy/paste your picturess from the card reader to your pictures folder.
OR
You can hook your camera to your pc with the USB cord, if nothing comes up automatically then go to MyComputer and open it and copy/paste from your camera to your pictures file.

Joseph asks…

accidental deletion of Sony digital camera operation software?

I have a Sony DSC-T5 camera (5.1 megapixel). while deleting photos from camera, I think I accidentally deleted on camera software. Now every time I turn the camera, it showed no operation software. Can I reintall it? if so, how? Thanks

Pip answers:

No need to worry, you will have to reset it to factory condition. However, I think this might delete your pictures (though i’m not positive).

First, shut off the camera, and remove the battery

_______________________________________________
Ok, if your camera has a button for turning it on and off,
hold it down for 15 seconds. Then release the button

If it has a switch, just move the switch to “ON”. Then switch the power back to “OFF”
______________________________________________

Now put the battery back in, and turn on the camera!! It should work fine hopefully!

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Your Questions About Canon Digital Camera Battery

Steven asks…

Canon digital camera- Battery?

do we have to care about the “mAh” of the battries that we use for a digital camera like Canon S3 IS?
I just want to know that is “3800 mAh” good for the digital camera or not?

Pip answers:

Frankly, I would be highly suspicious of a NiMH 3800mAh rechargeable battery.
I did a search for them and all I could find were Sony 3800mAh…from India, so I would doubt their authenticity.
As far as I know, Sony only make up to 2700mAh rechargeable batteries.
If you stick with 2500-2700mAh batteries you will be fine. (this allows up to 550 shots).

Just don’t buy them from Ebay, India.

Maria asks…

Canon Digital Camera?

what kind of canon digital camera works really good?
(not to expensive though)

Pip answers:

Canon powershot SD1100IS is pretty much the best camera i can suggest to you
costs less than $200 somewhere around $150 or lesser

a word of advice, don’t go for camera that uses AA batteries, if you do get a rechargeable one or go for the lithium ion batteries, like the ones in cellphones it saves up money on buying normal batteries.

Robert asks…

digital camera?

i have a digital camera and its crap. i need to buy a new one that doesnt take batteries…one that you h00k up to ur computer to charge or sumthing like that, BUT one that iz a reasonable price. can anyone recomend anything. perferably something that is at the most $120 but something thats good quality??

Pip answers:

You’d be better off with a mid-priced Canon camera… Even if it uses batteries.

Considering that every digital camera requires electricity to take a picture, it’s gonna be hard to find one that doesn’t take batteries. (I’ve never seen a corded model)

You sound like you’re trying to get away as cheaply as possible. There’s an old saying about being “penny-wise and pound-foolish”… In other words, spending the least amount of money, then complaining that what you bought was cheap crap. Of course it was… That’s what you paid for!

If you are serious about getting a good camera, then consider doing a little research first… Then be ready and willing to spend a little more…

Paul asks…

Digital camera batteries?

I recently got a Vivitar camera as I just wanted a basic one but after I put new batteries in they are finished within about 15 mins is this normal? Also how much time does recharceable AAA batteries give?

Pip answers:

I have a Canon A710is. With the LCD on and using the flash 25% of the time I get 80+shots with Duracell AA’s. With MAHA 2700mah AA rechargables I get 320+shots. Even the best standard batteries(Duracell, Energizer etc.) don’t begin to compare to rechargables. If your camera really usesAAA batteries you need to get the highest mah rating you can find.

George asks…

Best Nikon or Canon digital camera?

Okay I would like to find the BEST camera (point and shoot) with the BEST macro, and really really really good in low light. But keep the price under 140? Either Nikon or Canon. Thanks!

Pip answers:

I bought the Canon A1200 because I wanted a small point and shoot that I could take everywhere with me. Other selling points were the optical viewfinder which I don’t really use much, as well as the AA batteries. I use Sanyo Eneloops in this camera and they work great. I don’t know how many pictures I can take with them on a single charge because I end up recharging them before they die completely.

S

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