Forums > Photography Talk > Best $750-$850 Digital CAMERA (newbie)

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Blair Danielle

Posts: 10

Lafayette, Louisiana, US

Hey all,

I am new to being behind the camera. I have been borrowing someone's backup Canon 20d which i am sort of familiar with now. I am looking at getting my own camera but the maximum i could spend is like $800-$850. Browsing AMAZON, I have seen the Canon 60d, and the Canon T3i and even the T4i. I only mention Canons because thats what i have a little knowledge of. i dont know about nikon or fuji, etc.
Help:
What camera would you guys recommend and which lens package with that camera?

thanx darlins!

Dec 29 12 09:35 pm Link

Photographer

Jackson frontier photos

Posts: 531

Joplin, Missouri, US

I suspect the brand wouldn't matter too much.  But, I do recommend getting a 50mm prime lens, all brands sell them.  They are great for portraits and maximum control over depth of field.

Dec 29 12 09:39 pm Link

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Photographer

-JAY-

Posts: 6729

Las Vegas, Nevada, US

For $800:

Canon T2i
Tamron 17-50 f/2.8
Canon 50mm 1.8

Substitute t2i for nikon/sony equivalent if you like the way they feel.

This generation of entry level cameras are great (t2i has similar/near identical image quality as t3i/t4i/60d/7d - same sensor) the 17-50 is a great overall lens, fast, sharp. 50mm is great for shallow depth of field, and artsyness. Also a good portrait length on a crop camera.

Dec 29 12 09:41 pm Link

Photographer

ELiffmann

Posts: 1416

Baton Rouge, Louisiana, US

^This guys knows a bargain and Canon gear.

Dec 29 12 09:43 pm Link

Photographer

Instinct Images

Posts: 22736

San Diego, California, US

It kind of depends on what you plan to shoot and what lenses you need. Are you a Costco member or know one?

You can buy a Canon T3i with 2 lenses for $749 right now. Pretty much everything you need to get started.

http://www.costco.com/.product.652089.html

I suggest avoiding Amazon and sticking with a reputable dealer such as B&H Photo Video or Adorama.

You can get it cheaper if you just want it with one lens:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/9 … gital.html

or here's a different package:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/7 … gital.html

You can also get a slighter newer model - the Canon T4i - with lens:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/8 … gital.html

The Canon 60D is a slightly nicer body with a few extra features than the Rebel but once you add a lens it's probably going to be slightly more than what you want to spend.

The new Rebel models have better image quality and more features than the 20D plus they shoot video too.

Dec 29 12 09:52 pm Link

Photographer

R_Marquez

Posts: 4648

San Francisco, California, US

A refurbished t3i with a kit lens will run you around $500 with taxes:

http://shop.usa.canon.com/webapp/wcs/st … Price_list

Refurbished gear is usually gear that cannot be sold as new, for whatever reason. This includes store returns, but could include gear that has been fixed. Either way, most of the time it'll be in really good cosmetic condition and to factory spec.

Dec 29 12 10:03 pm Link

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Photographer

-JAY-

Posts: 6729

Las Vegas, Nevada, US

R_Marquez wrote:
A refurbished t3i with a kit lens will run you around $500 with taxes:

http://shop.usa.canon.com/webapp/wcs/st … Price_list

Refurbished gear is usually gear that cannot be sold as new, for whatever reason. This includes store returns, but could include gear that has been fixed. Either way, most of the time it'll be in really good cosmetic condition and to factory spec.

+1 to canon refurb. Everything's 20-25% off right now too.

Dec 29 12 10:06 pm Link

Photographer

Aaron Lewis Photography

Posts: 5083

Catskill, New York, US

On the Nikon side you can probably get a D90 or a D300 with a 50mm 1.8 for that money. If you were able to find a good deal you may even get a used D7000.

D90
50 mm 1.8
55 - 200 f4-5.6

Look for a kit on eBay. People sell complete kits all the time when they're either retiring, switching manufacturers or whatever.

Dec 29 12 10:39 pm Link

Photographer

ArtisticGlamour

Posts: 3846

Phoenix, Arizona, US

Sony a65 (24mpix)
http://www.amazon.com/Sony-Translucent- … +with+lens

Then, pickup this lens used...(I have found 2 at thrift shops for next to nothing)...
http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=htt … A&dur=2774
Minolta Maxxum AF 50mm/1.7

Dec 29 12 10:43 pm Link

Photographer

Hugh Alison

Posts: 2123

Aberystwyth, Wales, United Kingdom

Blair Danielle  wrote:
... I have been borrowing someone's backup Canon 20d which i am sort of familiar with now. ....the maximum i could spend is like $800-$850...
What camera would you guys recommend and which lens package with that camera?

If you've found the 20d OK to use, I'd suggest a used 30D or 40D body ($250) - similar, but quite a big improvement, and it'll leave more cash for lenses.

I'd add a new Canon  50mm/1.4 ($300) and look for a used 24mm /2.8 ($250).

I could shoot happily with that setup for years.

Dec 29 12 11:34 pm Link

Photographer

Legacys 7

Posts: 33882

San Francisco, California, US

I know someone that just purchased a Nikon D3200 and he loves it. 600 plus bucks for the kit. I know that you'd mentioned Canon. There should be an equal price and camera in that department. Sony has one too. But if it's Canon, look for a similar priced camera and body specs.

Dec 30 12 02:21 am Link

Photographer

Michael Broughton

Posts: 2259

Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

Dec 30 12 03:00 am Link

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Robb Mann

Posts: 10972

Baltimore, Maryland, US

If you can hold off a few weeks Id wait for the Nikon D5200 to make it to the US. Its been released in the rest of the world, so specs and price are out their. Looks like a hell of a camera. With 18-55 kit lens should be in your price range.

Dec 30 12 03:15 am Link

Photographer

Valenten Photography

Posts: 265

Conflans-Sainte-Honorine, Île-de-France, France

-JAY- wrote:
For $800:

Canon T2i
Tamron 17-50 f/2.8
Canon 50mm 1.8

Definitely this. Canon 550D/T2i is pretty good, and the 50mm f/1.8 is awesome too. Definitely a good idea !

Dec 30 12 05:44 pm Link

Photographer

AVD AlphaDuctions

Posts: 10590

Gatineau, Quebec, Canada

all the suggestions posted so far are fine.  you won't go wrong with any of them. I suggest you go to a store and try them all out to see which feels right in your hand.  Since you have been playing with a Canon I suspect the T2i will win that test but you never know...
A camera should be an  extension of your hand. to fully enjoy it you shouldnt want to put it down - like buying a pair of running shoes that you dont want to take off once you try them. Since all the suggested cameras are equivalently good and at the same approximate price point...ergonomics wins. If for some reason you like the feel of more than one, then go with the newer one.  may as well have the slightly better feature set even if you don't know how to use yet.
enjoy smile

Dec 30 12 07:22 pm Link

Photographer

SKITA Studios

Posts: 1568

Boston, Massachusetts, US

Pentax K-5 (or the K-30 or K-01):
  http://www.buydig.com/shop/product.aspx … KK5&ref=cj
or Nikon D7000

They all have probably the best APS-C sensor.
Best ergonomics are usually Pentax.
Canon is only interesting if you want to do video IMHO...their sensors are probably a generation behind the Sony sensor in the cameras above unfortunately.

Jan 01 13 02:52 pm Link

Photographer

Legacys 7

Posts: 33882

San Francisco, California, US

SKITA Studios wrote:
Pentax K-5 (or the K-30 or K-01):
  http://www.buydig.com/shop/product.aspx … KK5&ref=cj
or Nikon D7000

They all have probably the best APS-C sensor.
Best ergonomics are usually Pentax.
Canon is only interesting if you want to do video IMHO...their sensors are probably a generation behind the Sony sensor in the cameras above unfortunately.

I'm a Sony user. But I disagree that Canon is behind. Both do have advantages and disadvantages. Imo, most of that stuff is subjective and subtle. The model, who's preference to shoot with Canon will be fine shooting with a Canon camera.

Jan 01 13 05:08 pm Link

Photographer

ArtisticGlamour

Posts: 3846

Phoenix, Arizona, US

I still would recommend the Sony for best bang-for-the-buck. wink

But, if not the Sony a65 (24mpix) then stick with the Canon t4i package (18mpix) with a workable lens setup. ($749)
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00894 … Q84QT15C7P

Jan 01 13 05:14 pm Link

Photographer

LUNA_PHOTOGRAPHY

Posts: 258

Wilmington, North Carolina, US

I think the Canon 5DI is the best bang for your buck.  Wonderful camera.  I still use it for professional shoots even though I have the 5DIII which I primarily reserve for weddings (along with my 5DI). I find that even 20+megapixels is completely unnecessary for the vast majority of my clients who don't print larger than 24x36, so I use my 5DI more often than the 5DIII.

Jan 02 13 12:02 pm Link

Photographer

BEHOLDER ArtPhotography

Posts: 103

Monroe, Louisiana, US

Alright now...there isn't anything wrong with my old 20d you are borrowing...Its like the little engine that could. LOL

Jan 03 13 11:55 am Link