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New member and camera query

Simes

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Hi. Pleased to meet you. My name is Simon and I am from the UK. Many years ago before digital SLRs I was into photography with films, although I never got past the beginner stage. I am now looking for a digital SLR. My main interest is to take photos of landscapes and birds on an estuary either to print and frame or use as a reference for water colour painting. Unfortunately I only have a budget of around £400. I have been looking at the Nikon 3500 and 7100 so far but can anyone recommend a good entry level camera?
Thank you
Simon
 

rebel06

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Hi Simon and welcome to the forum, will the birds be close or will you need a zoom lens do you think?
 

RyanB

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Hi Simon and welcome to the forum!
Both camera models you are looking at are perfectly reasonable entry level DSLRs as to what you can capture with them will be mainly down to your lens choice. Assuming you get one with a kit lens(18-50mm) landscapes are perfectly possible but birds would require a longer reach lens in lots of situations unless you are pretty much on top of them.
Have you considered a large range bridge camera? There are plenty of decent bridge cameras within your budget which you could use for both landscape and longer reach shots without the need and expense of multiple lenses.
 

rebel06

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As Ryan said a bridge camera would probably suit your needs well ... they tend to have a good zoom range.
OR you could probably consider used, and go above entry level that way, take a look at one of our sponsors MPB, you could get a good body and lens for your £400...


I have bought and sold to MPB and found them good, as have many of our members.

Paul
 
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Simes

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Hi Simon and welcome to the forum, will the birds be close or will you need a zoom lens do you think?
I'll probably need a zoom lens eventually but not vital straight away. Im more interested in getting the best entry level camera for the budget

Hi Simon and welcome to the forum!
Both camera models you are looking at are perfectly reasonable entry level DSLRs as to what you can capture with them will be mainly down to your lens choice. Assuming you get one with a kit lens(18-50mm) landscapes are perfectly possible but birds would require a longer reach lens in lots of situations unless you are pretty much on top of them.
Have you considered a large range bridge camera? There are plenty of decent bridge cameras within your budget which you could use for both landscape and longer reach shots without the need and expense of multiple lenses.
Hi. Thank you for the welcome. Im not sure what the difference is between a bridge camera and an slr but I'd definitely consider it thank you

As Ryan said a bridge camera would probably suit your needs well ... they tend to have a good zoom range.
OR you could probably consider used, and go above entry level that way, take a look at one of our sponsors MPB, you could get a good body and lens for your £400...


I have bought and sold to MPB and found them good, as have many of our members.

Paul
Sure. Thanks for the advice

What do you reckon to the nikon coolpix p900? Good quality photos? I'm not worried about winning the pulitzer prize but it would be nice if they look good on the wall
 

rebel06

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What do you reckon to the nikon coolpix p900? Good quality photos? I'm not worried about winning the pulitzer prize but it would be nice if they look good on the wall
A very capable bridge camera with a good zoom, .... but will cost more than your budget new.
 

RyanB

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The P900 does look like a very versatile piece of equipment, one thing I would note is it doesn't support RAW shooting so will limit post processing potential. If you tend to get things right in-camera its a non issue but if you like to play about with your images in post it would be something to think about.
 

Simes

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It looks like the availability in the uk is scarce. It is very difficult choosing a camera as a beginner with all of the choice out there
 

rebel06

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what part of the UK are you from, do you have a camera shop close that you could visit and take a look.
 

Simes

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what part of the UK are you from, do you have a camera shop close that you could visit and take a look.
Great Yarmouth at the moment. Sheffield in a few weeks. I could have a look in Jessops when I move up there.
 

rebel06

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It's not available in Jessops any more, has been superseded by the P950 but that costs much more.
 

Simes

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It's not available in Jessops any more, has been superseded by the P950 but that costs much more.
Oh thats a shame. I dont really want to go 2nd hand due to no guarantee if something goes wrong
 

Phill104

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Bear in mind I have never tried this setup, but at £429 with two lenses it looks like it may fit the bill. Hopefully others can chip in and say if this system is up to the task


The 40-150 will giveOk reach for birds and you could easily upgrade later on to maybe a 100-400 if you really get into it.
 

rebel06

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MPB gives 6 months guarantee I think.
 

Ozzie_Traveller

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G'day Simon

Another "welcome aboard" from the land of Downunder :)

And another suggestion to seriously consider a superzoom / bridge camera as -in my opinion- they are better that dSLRs most days !!

I use Panasonic superzooms and love 'em to bits. All the knobs & buttons of the dSLR but without the interchangeable lens. After all, why would you need one when the lens is similar to a Canon-Nikon-Sony-Pentax camera running multiple lenses from 18mm out to 450mm or more - and all built in to the one unit

The camera I would very seriously suggest you look at / maybe even buy is the Panasonic FZ-300 (sometimes sold as the 330), and priced from 300 to 350GBP. All the features of most dSLRs plus Panny extras not found on most dSLRs

The lens is a Leica designed unit and is very, very sharp, along with the beauty that it is a "constant aperture" lens - ie: it keeps its preset aperture as it zooms, rather than the aperture changing as you zoom. This means that you can shoot pix at F2,8 when zoomed out to its 600mm maximum zoom, something that no other dSLR can do

If you want to see some of the capabilities of these cameras, have a sqwiz at my Flickr library ~ and please come back with Qs as they arise
Hope this helps
Phil
 

Simes

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G'day Simon

Another "welcome aboard" from the land of Downunder :)

And another suggestion to seriously consider a superzoom / bridge camera as -in my opinion- they are better that dSLRs most days !!

I use Panasonic superzooms and love 'em to bits. All the knobs & buttons of the dSLR but without the interchangeable lens. After all, why would you need one when the lens is similar to a Canon-Nikon-Sony-Pentax camera running multiple lenses from 18mm out to 450mm or more - and all built in to the one unit

The camera I would very seriously suggest you look at / maybe even buy is the Panasonic FZ-300 (sometimes sold as the 330), and priced from 300 to 350GBP. All the features of most dSLRs plus Panny extras not found on most dSLRs

The lens is a Leica designed unit and is very, very sharp, along with the beauty that it is a "constant aperture" lens - ie: it keeps its preset aperture as it zooms, rather than the aperture changing as you zoom. This means that you can shoot pix at F2,8 when zoomed out to its 600mm maximum zoom, something that no other dSLR can do

If you want to see some of the capabilities of these cameras, have a sqwiz at my Flickr library ~ and please come back with Qs as they arise
Hope this helps
Phil
I will definitely take a look at that camera. Thank you very much for the great help. Would you recommend the panasonic over the nikon p900?
 

RyanB

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I think Phil's suggestion is pretty solid and going by specs I would take a fz300 over the p900 any day. The p900 has better reach but inferior features compared to the Panasonic. The panny has RAW support, a better viewfinder and the f2.8 constant will allow a lot faster shutter speeds and lower iso when using the long end of the zoom range which will result in much better image quality. The Panasonic also has weather sealing and a hot shoe if you ever wanted to add an external flash to the mix.
 

Simes

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I think Phil's suggestion is pretty solid and going by specs I would take a fz300 over the p900 any day. The p900 has better reach but inferior features compared to the Panasonic. The panny has RAW support, a better viewfinder and the f2.8 constant will allow a lot faster shutter speeds and lower iso when using the long end of the zoom range which will result in much better image quality. The Panasonic also has weather sealing and a hot shoe if you ever wanted to add an external flash to the mix.
Cheers . I think this about seals it. Looking forward to getting out there! Now...how to get out of working for a living.

G'day Simon

Another "welcome aboard" from the land of Downunder :)

And another suggestion to seriously consider a superzoom / bridge camera as -in my opinion- they are better that dSLRs most days !!

I use Panasonic superzooms and love 'em to bits. All the knobs & buttons of the dSLR but without the interchangeable lens. After all, why would you need one when the lens is similar to a Canon-Nikon-Sony-Pentax camera running multiple lenses from 18mm out to 450mm or more - and all built in to the one unit

The camera I would very seriously suggest you look at / maybe even buy is the Panasonic FZ-300 (sometimes sold as the 330), and priced from 300 to 350GBP. All the features of most dSLRs plus Panny extras not found on most dSLRs

The lens is a Leica designed unit and is very, very sharp, along with the beauty that it is a "constant aperture" lens - ie: it keeps its preset aperture as it zooms, rather than the aperture changing as you zoom. This means that you can shoot pix at F2,8 when zoomed out to its 600mm maximum zoom, something that no other dSLR can do

If you want to see some of the capabilities of these cameras, have a sqwiz at my Flickr library ~ and please come back with Qs as they arise
Hope this helps
Phil
Is this the one ? https://www.photospecialist.co.uk/panasonic-lumix-dmc-fz300
 

oldgeezer

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Never used any gear that @Ozzie_Traveller has mentioned but if I were starting out now I would probably jump at these cameras for most general photography as seeing the results from them is excellent and exceptional when used in earnest.
For Studio work, I love my gear but if you are looking for decent wildlife zooms and walk around camera, these are expensive and need a lot of research to get a DSLR to do the same as these cameras mentioned.
 

RyanB

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Now...how to get out of working for a living.
If you manage to figure that one out let me know, I can't see the lottery doing it for me. :grin:
Is this the one ?
No experience with the vendor but looks like it to me and a pretty good deal compared to other prices I have seen online.
 

Simes

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Thanks for your help everyone. I reckon I will go with Panasonic FZ-300 that Ozzie mentioned. I hope to share some photos in the near future
 

Phill104

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I have a few friends who use that Panny and love it. Good luck and I look forward to seeing your shots.
 

Simes

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G'day Simon

Another "welcome aboard" from the land of Downunder :)

And another suggestion to seriously consider a superzoom / bridge camera as -in my opinion- they are better that dSLRs most days !!

I use Panasonic superzooms and love 'em to bits. All the knobs & buttons of the dSLR but without the interchangeable lens. After all, why would you need one when the lens is similar to a Canon-Nikon-Sony-Pentax camera running multiple lenses from 18mm out to 450mm or more - and all built in to the one unit

The camera I would very seriously suggest you look at / maybe even buy is the Panasonic FZ-300 (sometimes sold as the 330), and priced from 300 to 350GBP. All the features of most dSLRs plus Panny extras not found on most dSLRs

The lens is a Leica designed unit and is very, very sharp, along with the beauty that it is a "constant aperture" lens - ie: it keeps its preset aperture as it zooms, rather than the aperture changing as you zoom. This means that you can shoot pix at F2,8 when zoomed out to its 600mm maximum zoom, something that no other dSLR can do

If you want to see some of the capabilities of these cameras, have a sqwiz at my Flickr library ~ and please come back with Qs as they arise
Hope this helps
Phil
Hi . How do I view your flickr photos?
 

Simes

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I had my eyes tested but my glasses haven't arrived yet :). Thank you
 
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