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Anonymous
September 25, 2005 4:42:55 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

I am an older gentleman trying to go from a Nikon SLR film camera to a
digital SLR.

My primary object is taking bird pictures flying or sitting still and other
action photos.

After reading several web sites and getting totally confused what do I look
for beside a fast shutter speed?

Any help will be greatly appreciated.

Troy

More about : camera

September 25, 2005 4:42:56 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Troy Messano wrote:

>I am an older gentleman trying to go from a Nikon SLR film camera to a
>digital SLR.

Most of what you learned with film still applies to a digital SLR. The
only two major differences are the image recording format (memory cards
instead of film) and the field of view crop factor that narrows the
effective field of view with regular lenses.

The FOV crop factor clips off the edges of your image because the
imaging sensor is smaller than the size of a frame of film. Basically
this means that a digital SLR can only "see" about 75% of the frame, so
some of the sides and top/bottom are chopped off. So a 50mm lense has
about the same field of view as a 75mm lense at the same distance. The
focal length is the same at 50mm, but you just see less of the field. So
if you want more in the frame, you have to move back to get more in the
image. No biggie since digital SLR's still give you a TTL view, so what
you see is what you get.

Other than that, things like film speed (ISO), shutter speed, aperture
size, etc. are all pretty much the same.

>My primary object is taking bird pictures flying or sitting still and other
>action photos.
>
>After reading several web sites and getting totally confused what do I look
>for beside a fast shutter speed?

Since you're familiar with Nikon and probably have some Nikon lenses,
I'd suggest you look at the Nikon D50 or D70s models to see if they have
the features you want. Both are quite capable and can provide excellent
images, and because they're Nikon, they should have a similar design and
"feel" to previous film bodies.

I was in the same situation about a year ago when prices and performance
of digital cameras came into my accepted range. I moved from a Canon
film body to a digital body, and still use all of my older Canon lenses.
The learning curve was remarkably flat - the camera functioned virtually
identical to my film camera and was very easy to learn. And without the
costs of film processing. Gotta love that!

:) 

Anywho, if you can be more specific about your needs, what you have now,
and what you're looking to get out of a new body, perhaps myself and
others can give you more specific replies.
September 25, 2005 4:42:56 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

I am an older gentlemand also. Get a Canon 20D and some long lenses.
Bob AZ
Related resources
Anonymous
September 25, 2005 4:42:56 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

If your Nikon lenses are autofocus, odds are they will work with a
Nikon DSLR. I have a D70 that I'm very happy with. There are a couple
newer versions of it, the D50 (less features) and the D70s (about the
same), but all are very similar. You'll find the crop factor mentioned
by someone else to be an advantage for wildlife, since a 300mm lens
will now give you a similar picture as a 450mm lens would on the 35mm
camera. My lenses were all manual, so I haven't used them with the new
camera, but I came from an FG and I'm older too. The gentleman part
fluctuates.

If you don't have the Nikon autofocus lenses, then you may want to shop
everybody. If you want to stay as inexpensive as possible on your
first venture, the Canon 300D, the Olympus Evolt, the Nikon D50, and I
think the Pentax is the *ist DL or DS. They're all under $1000 with
lenses, if you shop around. There are others, but mostly more money.
If you have big bucks, Canon is releasing a full frame DSLR where you
won't have the crop factor at all, but it's $3200, just for the body.
There are several others that are even more. I've probably forgotten
some, but searching the internet will get you up to date on what's
available.

Most all work just like your film SLR. You can set the shutter speed
and F-stop or there is varying automation to do it for you. Learning
to navigate the menus is about the hardest part, but there are plenty
of good books available and these groups can be quite helpful as well.

Kitt
Anonymous
September 25, 2005 10:56:04 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Gijsbert wrote:
> "Kitt" <niteman3d@gmail.com> wrote in message
> news:1127626755.840580.31320@o13g2000cwo.googlegroups.com...
>

snip

> > Kitt
>
> I still have some Nikkor lenses: 35, 50, 85 and 135 mm. Does it mean that i
> can't use these anymore with a Nikon digital SLR?

Whether you *can* use them or not is determined by compatibility.
Whether you might want to or not is what you have to decide. While
*most* Nikon lenses will work, only newer ones will take advantage of
all the DSLR's capabilities. See here:

http://www.nikonians.org/html/resources/nikon_articles/...
Anonymous
September 25, 2005 11:21:52 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Celcius wrote:
> "Troy Messano" <hitch2nc@earthlink.net> wrote in message
> news:jomZe.3562$vw6.3394@newsread1.news.atl.earthlink.net...
> > I am an older gentleman trying to go from a Nikon SLR film camera to a
> > digital SLR.
> >
> > My primary object is taking bird pictures flying or sitting still and
> other
> > action photos.
> >
> > After reading several web sites and getting totally confused what do I
> look
> > for beside a fast shutter speed?
> >
> > Any help will be greatly appreciated.
> >
> > Troy
> >
> >
> Troy,
>
> How old is "an older gentleman"?
> Why make the difference?
> I think age has nothing to do with intelligence, willingness to learn, and
> photo savvy...
>
> Cheers,
>
> Marcel


Pardon my intrusion, but you're right... as far as you go. Problem is,
there's more to it than you mention. There's also the ability to squat
and return to an upright position all in the same day and the ability
to ascend and descend various towers, trees, scaffoldings, hills,
valleys, ladders, stairs... well, you get the picture. It takes me all
night to do what I used to do all night. ;o) There's also the
limitations inflicted on some of us by failing vision and hearing.
(Tiny menus we can't see and 'beeps' we can't hear.)

As far as the gentleman part, I doubt there all that many of the
"Paparazzi" who might be considered gentleman. So.. older has
something to do with physical ability more than anything and gentleman
has to do with the limitations of conscience and desire. Troy may have
had another motivation for mentioning it, but I know why I echoed his
sentiment and I'm betting there are quite a few others here who wish it
were easier to work around the changes imposed by advancing years. On
the other hand, we're damned tickled to work within our limitations
because getting old beats hell out of the alternative almost every time.
Anonymous
September 25, 2005 12:35:23 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

"Troy Messano" <hitch2nc@earthlink.net> wrote in message
news:jomZe.3562$vw6.3394@newsread1.news.atl.earthlink.net...
> I am an older gentleman trying to go from a Nikon SLR film camera to a
> digital SLR.
>
> My primary object is taking bird pictures flying or sitting still and
other
> action photos.
>
> After reading several web sites and getting totally confused what do I
look
> for beside a fast shutter speed?
>
> Any help will be greatly appreciated.
>
> Troy
>
>
Troy,

How old is "an older gentleman"?
Why make the difference?
I think age has nothing to do with intelligence, willingness to learn, and
photo savvy...

Cheers,

Marcel
Anonymous
September 25, 2005 3:15:57 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

"Kitt" <niteman3d@gmail.com> wrote in message
news:1127658112.018299.89670@g49g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...
>
> There's also the ability to squat
> and return to an upright position all in the same day and the ability
> to ascend and descend various towers, trees, scaffoldings, hills,
> valleys, ladders, stairs... well, you get the picture. It takes me all
> night to do what I used to do all night. ;o) There's also the
> limitations inflicted on some of us by failing vision and hearing.
> (Tiny menus we can't see and 'beeps' we can't hear.)
>
>
>
You're right, Kitt!
I should know. I'm 67 and although I'm in pretty good shape, I have
problems... The other day, I went to a wedding and a pro photographer was
doing his thing. I saw him flicking his reading glasses back and forth,
checking on his camera lcd to see what he was doing... I have to do the
same, although I could almost do it in the dark now by counting the number
of ticks ;-) It gets worse, however becaus I have to remember where
everything is in order to re-calculate the ticks... and my memory fails
me... I get dilly photos sometimes, all yellow, because I misjudge the
ticks...
I guess whatever the camera, one has to seriously adjust and photos take a
bit longer in between.
Cheers,
Marcel
Anonymous
September 25, 2005 4:52:24 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

"Kitt" <niteman3d@gmail.com> wrote in message
news:1127626755.840580.31320@o13g2000cwo.googlegroups.com...
> If your Nikon lenses are autofocus, odds are they will work with a
> Nikon DSLR. I have a D70 that I'm very happy with. There are a couple
> newer versions of it, the D50 (less features) and the D70s (about the
> same), but all are very similar. You'll find the crop factor mentioned
> by someone else to be an advantage for wildlife, since a 300mm lens
> will now give you a similar picture as a 450mm lens would on the 35mm
> camera. My lenses were all manual, so I haven't used them with the new
> camera, but I came from an FG and I'm older too. The gentleman part
> fluctuates.
>
> If you don't have the Nikon autofocus lenses, then you may want to shop
> everybody. If you want to stay as inexpensive as possible on your
> first venture, the Canon 300D, the Olympus Evolt, the Nikon D50, and I
> think the Pentax is the *ist DL or DS. They're all under $1000 with
> lenses, if you shop around. There are others, but mostly more money.
> If you have big bucks, Canon is releasing a full frame DSLR where you
> won't have the crop factor at all, but it's $3200, just for the body.
> There are several others that are even more. I've probably forgotten
> some, but searching the internet will get you up to date on what's
> available.
>
> Most all work just like your film SLR. You can set the shutter speed
> and F-stop or there is varying automation to do it for you. Learning
> to navigate the menus is about the hardest part, but there are plenty
> of good books available and these groups can be quite helpful as well.
>
> Kitt

I still have some Nikkor lenses: 35, 50, 85 and 135 mm. Does it mean that i
can't use these anymore with a Nikon digital SLR?
Anonymous
September 25, 2005 7:59:14 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

On Sun, 25 Sep 2005 11:15:57 -0400, Celcius wrote:

>
> "Kitt" <niteman3d@gmail.com> wrote in message
> news:1127658112.018299.89670@g49g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...
>>
>> There's also the ability to squat
>> and return to an upright position all in the same day and the ability
>> to ascend and descend various towers, trees, scaffoldings, hills,
>> valleys, ladders, stairs... well, you get the picture. It takes me all
>> night to do what I used to do all night. ;o) There's also the
>> limitations inflicted on some of us by failing vision and hearing.
>> (Tiny menus we can't see and 'beeps' we can't hear.)
>>
>>
>>
> You're right, Kitt!
> I should know. I'm 67 and although I'm in pretty good shape, I have
> problems... The other day, I went to a wedding and a pro photographer was
> doing his thing. I saw him flicking his reading glasses back and forth,
> checking on his camera lcd to see what he was doing... I have to do the
> same, although I could almost do it in the dark now by counting the number
> of ticks ;-) It gets worse, however becaus I have to remember where
> everything is in order to re-calculate the ticks... and my memory fails
> me... I get dilly photos sometimes, all yellow, because I misjudge the
> ticks...
> I guess whatever the camera, one has to seriously adjust and photos take a
> bit longer in between.
> Cheers,
> Marcel
I have seen you youngsters do this as well. I wear my glasses when looking
through the eyepiece of my 350D so don't have to fiddle.:-)

--
Neil
Delete delete to reply by email
Anonymous
September 25, 2005 8:29:04 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Troy Messano wrote:
> I am an older gentleman trying to go from a Nikon SLR film camera to a
> digital SLR.

The good news is that modern autofocus cameras work very well for
those of us who can't see as well as when we were younger.
On the positive, I meet a lot of older people doing wildlife
photography. Those with the big telephotos tend to be
retired dentists, doctors and other professionals. You'll see why
when you see prices below ;-).

> My primary object is taking bird pictures flying or sitting still and other
> action photos.
>
> After reading several web sites and getting totally confused what do I look
> for beside a fast shutter speed?
>
> Any help will be greatly appreciated.
>
> Troy

The next question you have to ask yourself is how much do you
want to carry? Bird photography generally requires long focal
length lenses. Capturing action requires fast optical speed. That
means fast lenses of long focal length. The current "portable"
high end is a 500 mm f/4 (and for those really macho folks, a
600 mm f/4). Starter quality low end in my opinion would be
a 300 mm f/4. And add a set of top quality teleconverters (1.4x
and 2x).

Camera? You want low shutter lag, high frame rate, and large
memory buffer capacity. Point and shoot cameras all fail in comparison
to DSLRs in this regard (this will likely start a flame war,
but no P&S compares to the good fast action DSLR). Lower end
DSLRs will do OK, but if you really want to do action, the upper
end (advanced amateur and pro line) cameras are what you want.

Next thing to consider is image stabilization, (IS on Canon, VR on
Nikon). IS is a BIG help, especially when doing hand held action
with telephotos. So consider only image stabilized lenses (my opinion).

Read Art Morris's web site, http://www.birdsasart.com and perhaps his
bird book "The Art of Bird Photography."
Remember, though, he is a contract Canon pro photographer
so recommends Canon. I also use Canon (only because about 18 years
ago I bought a Canon EOS film camera and got locked in with lenses).

People can correct me if I'm wrong, but if you require a fast DSLR,
and telephoto IS lenses, that narrows your choice to Canon or
Nikon. I think both will allow you to get excellent results.
Nikon does have one 12 megapixel camera that has a sub frame
6-megapixel high rate camera (Nikonians can fill in the details).

The current top performer for action is the 8-megapixel
1D Mark II. I have this camera, and it is amazing. When I use
other DSLRs, they seem sluggish, like early model P&S cameras in
comparison. It was pretty hard to put down $4500 for a body though.
The next step down to more affordable in the Canon line is
the Canon 20D camera. It will perform well as a serious amateur
camera.

Autofocus and bird action photography: you must get top lenses that
autofocus fast. The cheaper consumer telephotos are too slow for
a lot of action. That doesn't mean you can't do action with
cheaper lenses, just more will be soft focus or missed shots.

I'll recommend some setups using Canon because that is what I
am familiar with. Others can chime in with other manufacturers
equivalents (which I would be interested to see). Note I hope other
manufacturers have equivalents because that drives competition and
helps us consumers get better products at lower prices.

Top end (approximate prices):
Canon 1D Mark II $4,500
500 mm L IS f/4 telephoto $5,700
Kenko pro 300 TCs (1.4 and 2x) $ 400
4 2-gigabyte 80x compact flash $ 700
cards
Spare battery $ 120
Gitzo Carbon Fiber 1325 tripod $ 530
Wimberly tripod head $ 565 http://www.tripodhead.com/
Wimberly camera plates (2) $ 100
--------
$ 12,615 Total
Weight: I'll have to measure this setup, but basically you don't
want to go too far unless you are in good shape)

Quality starter set:
Canon 20D $1,500
300 mm f/4 L IS telephoto $1,100
Kenko pro 300 TCs (1.4 and 2x) $ 400
4 2-gigabyte 80x compact flash $ 700
cards
Spare battery $ 40
Gitzo Carbon Fiber 1228 tripod $ 520 G-1228 Mountaineer Reporter Mk2
Wimberly sidekick $ 250 http://www.tripodhead.com/
Arca Swiss B1 monoball $ 400
Wimberly camera plates (2) $ 100
--------
$ 5,010 Total
Weight is less than the above pro system, probably
about 20 to 25 pounds). Again I'll have to measure it.

You can go cheaper, but image quality will go down fast.
You'll also need camera bag(s) to carry all the stuff, so
add more $.

I use all of the above (except I have a 10D instead of a 20D).
You can see my bird images at:
http://www.clarkvision.com/galleries/gallery.bird

The advantage of an f/4 lens and a 1.4 TC is that at f/5.6 you still
get good autofocus. With the 2x you are at f/8 and you lose autofocus
on the Canon consumer cameras like the 20D. You need a pro body
to get good autofocus at f/8. I don;t know about other
manufacturers.

Other lenses to consider: 400 mm f/2.8 L, 300 mm f/2.8 L IS,
and of course shorter focal length lenses. Canon's 400 mm f/5.6
(non IS) is reportedly great at fast autofocus and is the choice
of many bird photographers for hand held bird flight images.

The next big investment is processing your images, but instead of
a darkroom you need a computer ($2000+) and photoshop ($600).
That is a big learning curve compared to the camera part.

Just my opinions....

Roger
!