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Beginners DSLR


inksmithy
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Hi all.

Coming up to a time when I want to start thinking about getting myself a DSLR and I'm looking for opinions.

I was at delilahtwinkle's Cumbria star party last weekend (cracking weekend it was too) and the general consensus there seemed to be to go for the Canon 450D, because it has a nice range of features.

I should say really what I'll be doing with it.

I'm feeling that any astrophotography done with it will be fairly short exposure stuff through a telescope at least - I'm fascinated by long exposure terrestrial photography.

From reading steppenwolf's book, I feel astrophotography is a fairly advanced form of the photographers art, so before setting down that path, I'd like to familiarize myself with the first principles.

So, that's what I'm looking for really. A beginners camera with live view - it was demonstrated to me last weekend and I instantly saw the benefit of having it for even basic astro work.

At the moment, I'm keeping my budget at around four hundred pounds, but would prefer to spend less - I'm wanting a new telescope as well.

At the moment, I've sort of been looking at the Canon 450D, the Canon 1000D, a NIKON and a Sony, but I'm sure there are others to think of.

Any ideas?

Alan

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I have a 450D and am very pleased with it. I do all my Astro-imaging with it (except for Moon and planets where you need a webcam). Seems a shame to only think about short exposures when the 450D is capable of much longer exposures (with guiding).

Advantages of a Canon 450D is "Live view" (well at least you can see the brightest stars and do live view focus) and the fact that you can programme long exposures with it (up to a hour if you wanted to, not that you would), but some of the other Canon's cannot do longer subs than (30 seconds?? I think) and I am not sure what methods have to be used to get around this.

So for me a 450D does everything I need it to. I use Canon Utility to capture and can control this from the laptop as well as see the images as they download in Digitial Photo Professional (part of the Canon Utility suite).

You are welcome to have a look at my website to see what I have managed to do with the 450D.

Carole

Edited by carastro
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but many of the other Canon's cannot do longer subs than (30 seconds?? I think) and I am not sure what methods have to be used to get around this.

Carole

Sorry to disagree Carole but I think all the Canon DSLRs are capable of exposures longer than 30 seconds using the bulb setting. I'm using the Canon EOS1000D for imaging - controlled through the laptop but I think there are remote controls available that can control the Canon DSLRs without the need for a computer which can be programmed to take the exposures and can use the bulb function too.

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I think there are remote controls available that can control the Canon DSLRs without the need for a computer which can be programmed to take the exposures and can use the bulb function too.

There certainly are....

Bulb over USB isn't available on the older cameras but can still be used using the remote terminal...

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Sorry to disagree Carole but I think all the Canon DSLRs are capable of exposures longer than 30 seconds using the bulb setting.

That's what I've been told, or maybe it's with Canon Utility they cannot do more than 30sec.

this is a quote from one of the posts on my local forum

The Canon Utility only allows 30 second exposures on the 400D even with LX adapter

I think it might work with APT though.

Carole

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I have been searching for a DSLR myself and after much research decided it was going to be either the Nikon D5000 or the Canon 1000d. I was swayed at the last moment to the Canon. I tracked a second hand one down at London Camera Exchange in Derby but I was not quick enough and it was gone within a day of me seeing the advert. They were selling it for £289 body only. Looked on ebay etc and most still seem to be going for £400 upward. Currys and Argos were selling it last weekend brand new with 18-55mm lens , strap, battery and charger for £349. I figured that wasn't too bad- so I treated myself!!!!:)

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In general use I'm sure Canon, Nikon, Sony, Olympus etc all have some great features and good plus points, it's just that for Astro Canon are the most established with Astro mods available and replacement filters etc which don't seem to be there on the other brands.

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Had a Canon 350D did many an exposure over 30 secs on bulb - controllable by USB but I cant remember is the bulb setting was limited. As well as the canon remote software, theres remote software called DSLR Remote Pro, by breezesoft though it is expensive, though you can download a 15 day trial.

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Thanks very much people, I appreciate the input.

From the look of it, it seems the general feeling is to go for a 450D or a 1000D/1100D, which backs up what the guys were saying last weekend.

Right then, time to start gathering pennies and watching camera-price-buster.co.uk. I think that's the url. I saw a 1000D new with a lens kit on there for 350 quid the other day, but the funds were regrettably unavailable.

Again, thank you people, I appreciate your time.

Alan

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Hey that's good shopping, that's about a hundred quid less than I've seen them there.

I've found a couple of places selling 1000D's for around 350 pounds, brand new, so it seems they are certainly out there.

Alan

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If you ever want to buy any Canon product new, it's worth dropping Ian Kerr an email to see what price he is able to supply at. For sure it will be cheaper than anything on camera price buster.

I have bought from Ian on several occasions and have saved quite a bit of cash.

If you have not dealt with Ian before you may find his payment requirement a bit unsettling; you have to put the full payment into his bank account, then the goods are dispatched. You may be saying to yourself that's crazy I not doing that, but try googling his name. You will see many people recommending him as an honest broker. In fact last time I looked on the Interweb, I could only find one person complaining about him and that seemed like a genuine mistake.

As I say, I have used him several times and so have several of my photographer friends.

Contact Ian here: kerso1123@msn.com

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I'm trying to find a reason not to go for a 1100D, my first dslr was/is a 20D so I realise I'm going to miss some of the functions that provides like the fast frame rate and quick dial. There is a part of me that wants to front more cash for something like a 60D but then why not consider a 600D or 550D, I really don't know if the price rise justifiable especially if the 1100D is such good value for money.

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