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Thread: Which one

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Palmer Ak

    Default Which one

    O K I,m ready to made the leep but which camera I'm looking for a Digital slr that is able to thke pics of the aurora without special magic editing or breaking the bank. Thanks Alex

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2006


    Any of them will do. Find one you like. -- Really! They're all good.

    However, I take issue with the common idea that buying a good digital camera will somehow free one from competent digital post processing. In fact, just the opposite is usually true. The better the camera, the more the manufacturer expects the photographer to know about digital image editing.

    Cheap digital cameras automatically turn up sharpening, contrast, and color saturation because the typical user of cheap cameras will like the effect in most snapshots, and may not know how to make that happen by themselves. The problem with this is that undoing these overdone effects is not as easy as making them, and the process always degrades the image. So with the best final results in mind, DSLRs usually come set to deliver the images to the photographer with minimal sharpening, contrast & saturation. This means you either; A) *Have* to do them yourself, or B) *Get* to do them yourself.

    In years past, film processors did this for us, they would compensate for bad exposure and weak colors or contrast, but thye only got it right about half the time. With digital we either have to do this ourselves, or tell the camera to crank all the settings up and hope that we like it. Of course we still have the option of asking our printing service to do it with their fancy machines, but they still only get it right about half the time.

    You can, of course, set the DSLR to process all its pictures to maximum sharpness, contrast & saturation, but then what's the point in spending all the money for a camera you can control? Also, in the past 5-6 years there was such a raft of complaints from beginners, about the "poor image quality" from their new DSLR's, that camera manufacturers started defaulting their entry level DSLRs to put out max sharpness, contrast & saturation. The complaints stopped, but now these new photographers are back where they started -- using a camera they can not really control. The best quality advice is to turn all these controls down as soon as you get your new camera and learn how to develop your own images.

    The bottom line is that if you want good results, buy a decent camera and expect to spend some time learning how to make the images pop the way you want 'em. The free Picasa, IrFanView image editors will do it, but better control will often produce better results.

  3. #3
    Member danattherock's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006


    What Jim said.

    Good advice.

    I got a few suggestions for you.

    Camera (best you can afford) I would suggest Canon or Nikon.

    Lens (best you can afford)

    Tripod (look at Bogen/Manfrotto in the $125-175 range for something decent)

    Photoshop Elements 6.0

    Scott Kelby's book "Photoshop Elements 6.0 for Digital Photographers"

    "Complete Digital Photography" book

    Start reading photography mags. At Barnes and Noble, Borders, etc... look at some of the British photo mags. They are a bit taller than standard magazines. You will easily recognize them at the news stand. Maybe stand an inch taller than standard magazines. Titles like "Photoplus" and "Digital Image" etc.. you will see them. One is specific for Canon users. Full of tuturial info and most come with an instructional cd-rom with lessons for Photoshop/Photoshop Elements. There is also an excellent British made mag, "Outdoor Photography" that is great. There is an american mag which is standard magazine size by the same name. Also a great magazine. I have learned a lot from them.

    Start reading/posting on the below forums Check out the Canon (or Nikon) forums. Also Nature forum.

    Photography on the net (Google that name) then click on the Canon forum (it is a site just for Canon users). Lots of activity and tons of old post to read through.

    Research gear at Luminous Landscapes website. Tons of tutorials too.

    Check camera reviews at

    Check out online sellers of equipment at

    Lots of scams out there. Be careful. B&H Photo/Video is the most trusted name out there.

    Read a lot before you buy. Then read some more. And some more.
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

  4. #4
    New member
    Join Date
    Oct 2008


    Good noise free high ISO performance is mandatory for this type of photography. Fast lenses, f2.8 for example, or better.

    If you have the money, get a Nikon D3 or D700 for great performance at high ISOs. 24-70 f2.4 is a good starting point.

    Get a weather sealed camera for being out in the snow... D3, D700 etc...

  5. #5
    Member Majik Imaje's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Living @ the Top of the World in Barrow Alaska


    Chuckle ! (no comment) !!

    do you want an OUTSTANDING camera that will be less than $600 ???

    It will do anything and everything you desire !!

    Panasonic DMC FZ50

    This camera will literally knock you over when you see what it can do !!

    It has just one lens that cannot be removed - but this LEICA lens is just so incredibly sharp, I have never ever seen images this sharp when printed up to 17" x 25" 10.10 megapixel !

    This camera leaves absolutley nothing to be desired. You have everything you need to create oustanding razor sharp images right out of the box.

    LEICA is a world leader in lens manufacturing for over 50 years.

    this lens is 35 mm (slight wide angle) to an amazing 420 mm extreme zoom !

    I guarantee you, once you try it, you will be very happy !!



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