View Full Version : 1st DSLR Choice - Help please

26-07-10, 12:07 PM
I know I know - another 'Which.....?' thread but it's always good to take advice.

Basically I'm after my 1st DSLR after using a compact for a number of years. Intended use will be landscapes, some sports and concert photography sometimes in low light.

The cameras in my budget (approx 500) I have looked at are:

Nikon D5000 - seems to be generally accepted as an entry level camera
Canon EOS500
Sony Alpha a500 OR Alpha a390

Coming from a compact I noticed that the Canon and Nikon have their Image Stabilisation in the lens whereas the Sony's is in the body - is this a factor I need to take into account as I am not sure which is the better system for a novice?

Reviews on the Sony a390 are a bit scarce as it's quite new but those I can find appear favourable. Am not too bothered about video - it's a nice to have but not a deal breaker.

Any advice/opinions are most welcome as I intend to buy quite soon.

Thanks in advance.

26-07-10, 12:40 PM
To answer your question about the stabilisation,
In lens has the advantage of being able to see the stabilisation through the viewfinder, yet they cost quite a bit of money.
In camera has the advantage of not having to spend the earth on stabilised lenses, but you cant see the stabilisation through the viewfinder.

It's not that big a factor really, I find that the biggest factor when choosing a DSLR is how it feels in your hands, hence the reason why I chose the sony a200 over the a230 :)

26-07-10, 04:20 PM
Thanks for that. Any other views on the cameras/comparisons?

26-07-10, 08:41 PM
If you've read the reviews, you'll have an idea of the differences - see which bits are most important to you. Then try them out for yourself at a decent camera shop and buy whichever you're happiest with - the best camera in the world is useless if you hate using it, and with DSLRs, it matters.

26-07-10, 09:03 PM
Am planning to do just that tomorrow evening. At present and on the basis of reviews alone (ergo reserving the right to change one's mind) I am probably swayed towards the Sony Alpha A500 as it has the in body IS plus it would appear that the lenses I may want to add would be cheaper, if a little more limited, as a result.

In terms f Sony are there DSLR's on a par with Canon and Nikon for quality and image quality? Bearing in mind comments that you tend to become affiliated to one brand am I better plumping for one of those now or are Sony units credible enough to go for one of those?

07-08-10, 11:35 PM
I owned a Nikon D40 as my first SLR before upgrading to a Nikon D300. It's a great little camera and you can find one at a very reasonable price on ebay etc. It also gives you a larger budget for some good quality lenses.

Check out Ken Rockwell's very positive review of it.

08-08-10, 09:11 AM
Looking at the range of picture subjects I would get a camera and a kit lens take lots of shots before deciding on what lenses to buy next. Of the cameras you have mentioned they all have good kit lenses

09-08-10, 11:26 AM
Well, after weeks of researching and trying I plumped for the Canon EOS500D. At the end it was a straight choice between that and the Sony and the Canon just felt better for me. I have bought a couple of books on the camera and am already learning a lot but still tons to learn yet which I'm looking forward to. At first I was a bit daunted with all the settings, and still am to an extent, but it's just trial and error with it and I am confident I will improve as I learn.

Hope I bought the right camera!!!

09-08-10, 12:51 PM
Now is the time to take lots of pictures you use the exif data to see what you shot at and you learn by your successes and failures. Best of luck