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Thread: owner suitability for camera

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    Member Tonym's Avatar
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    owner suitability for camera

    I previously posted regarding upgrading my 350D and have read quite a lot of threads on what camera would be the most suitable and thought maybe a 550D as I am still a beginer and find it easy to use my 350D with the shooting modes available on the camera. Occasionally I bust out and use the shutter speed or ISO selections but generally stick to Auto or one of the preset modes like landscape or sport.My question is if I bought a 7D would it be to much for me to use or could I still use it in Auto and gradually find my way to more custom use as I learn more?

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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    The 7D does have auto, but it doesnt have 'scene' modes. Yes you are upgrading from a consumer DSLR to a Pro/Semi-Pro level camera, and it will mean a learning curve. BUT, there are plenty of members here who own 7D's and they were not born knowing how to use them, so just like everyone else, you can learn to use and master a 7D. So I would say, if you can afford it, do it!
    "It is one thing to make a picture of what a person looks like, it is another thing to make a portrait of who they are" - Paul Caponigro

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    I'm going to disagree with Rick on this one.

    My first question is why do you want need a 7D? Will it suit your shooting, are you after speed, are you after wireless flash triggers? (Get the idea?) What does the 7D have that you need?

    If you are thinking that an upgrade to a 7D will be a big leap in image quality then you will be disappointed. It is hard for us to gauge your experience etc, but I'll take it on face value that you are a beginner and you aren't really into all the nitty gritty detail of image quality.

    There was a big leap up from the 350D to the 400D, but you will find it difficult to pick the difference between an image shot with a 550D, a 50D or a 7D. I went from a 450D to a 7D and the images coming out were different, I had to learn what the camera likes, how to use the focus system etc and the biggest change for me was the PP required. I was actually a little disheartened with the 7D at first until I got my head around it!

    On the surface of your question, my recommendation would be to buy a 550D, learn more about the features, manual mode etc and what you need in a camera over time (ie full frame vs crop, frames per second, ISO capabilities etc) and spend the money later when you know what you need rather than what you think you want.

    Hope that helps, happy to answer any other questions, as I made a similar transition to the one you're thinking about. Oh and also, go and have a look at the learning plan, it'll teach you all the things you need to know.
    Mic

    Photography is the art of telling stories with light.

    www.michaelgoulding.com

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    Member Edgar's Avatar
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    Hi Tonym

    It can take a long time to learn the basics of manual shooting (anything out of Auto mode) and getting a satisfactory result out of it, but it can be very rewarding to.

    You only upgrade your camera when what you've got is limited to your capability.

    My first DSLR was the 50D, then I moved to the Full Frame 5D MK II because I needed that DOF and its low light capability, also because I was going away for my honeymoon and I want to be able do record some video clips as well.

    I was going to keep to my 50D (together with the 5D II) for until it eventually dies because it serves its purpose, you know high frames-per-sec, 1.6x crop (the extra reach), and it's size.

    However just today, I traded that in for a 7D. Not because I think 7D can produce a better image than the 50D, but because it has functionality that I will benefit from. Since I started recording HD videos from my 5D II, I was so hooked to it.

    And because I normally carry the 2 bodies with me (so that I do not have to swap lenses), I want them both to be able to record HD videos so I am not sole relying on the lens attached to my 5D II.

    So the upgrade was worthwhile for me, and that extra frame rates, faster processor, larger view finder, better auto-focus system, same battery as the 5D II, they'll all just extra bonuses for me.

    So think wisely, remember non-pro DSLR bodies loses its value immediately after purchase. My 50D is now worth 40% of its original value in less than 2 years.
    Canon 5D MKII, 7D
    Canon EF 70-200mm F2.8L IS II | EF 24-70mm F2.8L | EF 16-35mm F2.8L II | EF 180mm F3L Macro | EF 85mm F1.8

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    For the love of what I see.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tonym View Post
    I previously posted regarding upgrading my 350D and have read quite a lot of threads on what camera would be the most suitable and thought maybe a 550D as I am still a beginer and find it easy to use my 350D with the shooting modes available on the camera. Occasionally I bust out and use the shutter speed or ISO selections but generally stick to Auto or one of the preset modes like landscape or sport.My question is if I bought a 7D would it be to much for me to use or could I still use it in Auto and gradually find my way to more custom use as I learn more?
    Having made the exact same move a few months ago I will give my 5c worth.

    Based on what you have said in relation to the picture modes you are using. DON'T DO IT!!
    Stay with the 350D. Get a better lens. Learn to use Shutter and Aperture priority. Then have another look at what you are doing and what you are getting.

    I had my 350D for several years, as I'm guessing you've had yours, and it wasn't until I joined this forum and learnt how to make better use of it that I started to look at upgrading. The only reason I did upgrade was for the fast burst rate of the 7D as most of what I do is sports.

    My path was,
    1. Buy the camera.
    2. Stuff up lots.
    3. Join this forum and learn.
    4. Buy a better lens.
    5. Get frustrated as the camera was not fast enough for what I wanted to capture.
    6. Buy a new camera but keep the better lens.
    7. Buy more and better lenses.
    8. Keep learning.

    If you have an itch to spend lots of money on a new camera, yes you will have problems with the 7D. It is a massive learning curve. And follow the advice above about the Learning Plan.

    Having said that I personally have no regrets in getting the 7D.

    Just look out Kitesurfing season!
    Peter.

    Some of my photo's are at www.peterking.id.au

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    Thanks for the replies everyone. I have had my 350D since 2006 when I bought it to go to Yellowstone and take pics of wildlife mainly at a distance with the 70-300 kit lens that came with it and I have mostly never thought much about what I was doing as the camera was on auto and it did it all for me. lately I have been doing some whale watching and trying to get some pics but find with the distances involved when I crop the pic I get a grainy pic so I thought an increase in Mega Pixels might help. I still need to learn a heap about taking pics on manual mode so I was a bit worried about whether I would be able to handle a 7D, maybe a 550D will better suit my knowledge level for a while.

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    May be I am a bit late with my reaction but here we go...
    Image quality depends on two elements: the body (sensor quality, in camera processing and the sensor resolution). More megapixels is not always equal to better IQ!
    Even more important is the lens (or the "glass" as photographers use to call it). A 70 - 300mm kit lens is not as good as a $2500 L quality lens.....
    So when you think about upgrading, think also about keeping your current body and getting better glass instead of upgrading the body and hanging on to the kit lenses.

    Unless you are very lucky whale watching you'll always have the problem of "reach". Even with a $6000 telephoto lens, without being close enough you'll have "grainy" pictures.
    Another thing is that you'll have to use pretty high shutterspeeds to capture the moment, like when a whale is breaching, especially when you are on a moving ship and even with a tripod. To get reasonable DOF with the long focal length you'll have to use a smaller aperture (= higher value) which means that you have to up the ISO even on a sunny day to 800 or even 1600 at times. And... the higher the ISO the more noise (grain) you get in you shots. That is where a more expensive body can help. My 5DMkII is much better at higher ISO than the camera I started with (400D).

    Try to get away from the "Auto" mode and experiment with other setting (Av, Tv and Manual).

    Keep shooting.

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    Thanks for the advice everyone, I still have my 350D and last week I bought a 50D with the 18-200 IS lens and I am very happy with it. I am about to get a 100-400 L series in the next week and will be able to use it on both cameras so I cant wait for some time off work to get out and try out the new gear. I will post some pics soon I hope.

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    Congratulations with the 50D - a great body. And together with a 100-400mm L lens you'll have great fun. Today I was on the beach shooting surfers with my 100-400L (aka "dustpump").
    Have a look at my Flickr site for the results.

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