You know how I’m always bitching about not having my “real camera” when I share pics captured with my phone and/or point-and-shoot camera?
I finally bought a new camera!
There’s a reason I don’t always carry my “real camera” – a digital SLR (Canon Rebel XT). It’s big, bulky, and I can’t really use it well during motorcycle trips unless I remove my helmet since it doesn’t have a screen-type viewfinder, only the old-fashioned optical viewfinder, i.e., little hole you have to look through.
In case you don’t know the biggest difference between point-and-shoot and SLR cameras… a point-and-shoot camera has a built-in lens that can’t be removed/switched-out. SLRs use interchangeable lenses.
Not only is the Rebel itself bulky, there are four or five lenses I like to carry, too, for zooming and wide-angle shots. Three of those lenses are bigger than the Rebel camera body. Newer version of the Rebel are smaller and more-advanced, but I’d still need those other lenses.
The point-and-shoot I’d been using — a Nikon Coolpix L20 — captures decent images, but the viewfinder sucks. It’s not nearly as clear as I’d like, so it’s next to impossible to determine while shooting or even after you’ve captured a shot whether the thing you wanted to be in focus is actually IN focus. Granted, that’s an old camera, too.
While the phone does capture decent images, it has its limits. It could be that I haven’t spent enough time figuring out how to use all of the camera’s features. It could also be that I don’t have the latest-and-greatest phone.
Anyway, most of you would be bored by the technical pros and cons I weighed (and there were many!) when finally deciding to get a new camera. So I’ll keep it simple.
One of the biggest factors in choosing a new camera was size. Here’s the new point-and-shoot compared to the old dSLR with the SMALLEST lens attached. And that “small” lens is a fixed lens, which means it doesn’t zoom at all. You want to get closer to something, you use your feet.
One of the biggest problems when shooting with any auto-focus camera, as evidenced in my image above, is making sure the camera is focused on what you want it to focus on. It wasn’t, which is why those pics are blurry. My new camera has manual focus capability. Yay! And several manual shooting modes, just like my dSLR. Double-yay!
Anyway, I promised not to bore you, didn’t I?
After agonozing for DAYS over which camera to buy, I actually went and bought the thing yesterday. Here are a bunch of snapshots I captured yesterday. They are all straight-out-of-the-camera, unedited images. And all were captured using the basic AUTO mode. (I have a ton of reading to do to figure out how to use all the features packed into this relatively small camera body.)
I actually pulled into a church parking lot to capture the next three images.
Once I got home, I had to charge the battery (batteries are rarely fully charged in the box).
Here are some other test images.
One of my biggest complaints with the camera phone has always been that it is low-light challenged. This new camera seems to do a pretty good job capturing shading even in low light while being pulled along behind three impatient dogs.
I think I chose well. Some of the images (like the dogs) are a tad grainy, but considering they were captured without flash, I think they’re damn good.
I’ll try to do some test shots in brighter light today.
Something tells me you’ll be seeing a lot more pictures here. 🙂