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12-08-2006, 01:01 PM   #1
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Help with DSLR

Hello guys/gals I'm new to the site.

I'm a 21 year old college student who works part time. I'm from Tennessee.

I'm looking for a DSLR to shoot high quality pictures of automobiles.

I'm looking to spend around $600-700 on a DSLR and found out about pentax. They seem to shoot pretty good pictures and is within my price range.

I was looking at the digital rebel/ D70 and found that pentax can compare for a smaller price tag.

My question is what type of lens would be good to capture high quality images from not too far away?

Which camera would best suit my needs and budget? I've been looking at the *ist - which model would work for me?


12-08-2006, 01:31 PM   #2
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Here is a different approach. Beach Camera, a good mail order operation has the K100D for $450. Unless you can find an *ist for around $350, go with the K100D body only. Then buy a screw mount adapter for about $25 but make sure it's a pentax one. I got mine from KEH. Look at the screw mount lenses that KEH has. The ones rated BGN might have some cosmetic flaws on the outside but work great. I've bought a few from them and they are a little more than ebay but you know you will get a good lens from them. Right now they have the following lenses listed and this would make a great starter kit.

28mm f2.8 $59
50mm f1.4 $69
135mm f3,5 $69

The whole package comes to about $675. You might be able to find a better price on the body with a search. You could also check your local pawn shops for lenses. The 28, 50, 135 spread gives you a great start.
I just checked pricing on K mount manual lenses from KEH. They are about the same price as the screw mount and you would not need the adapter.

Last edited by regken; 12-08-2006 at 01:50 PM. Reason: further info
12-08-2006, 02:34 PM   #3
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Any of the D cameras would be fine, but as Ken pointed out, you can probably get a K100D for not much more, and it has shake reduction plus much-improved jpeg processing, if that's important to you.

As for lenses, you really can't go wrong with the DA 18-55 that's usually kitted with these cameras. It's obviously not a top-notch lens, but it's excellent bang for buck and you can play around and see what focal lengths you end up prefering.

I suggest that you hunt up some pictures of cars here and over at dpreview (I know there are a few who do some very nice stuff at both sites) and see what focal lengths they're using. That should give you some idea of what lengths will give you the look you're going for.

And once you've done all that, post some of your photos here so we can admire them!

12-08-2006, 03:40 PM   #4
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After reading Julie's post I went back and checked pricing at Beach camera. I am Shocked! I thought I was quoting K110D pricing but that $450 price is for the K100D. The K110D is only $340 after rebate! That is the one you have to use in comparing pricing for an *ist. Unless you can find an *ist for $250, get the K110D. If you want SR that is another $110. I would highly recommend that you get a manual 50mm f1.4 or f1.7 and learn how to frame with your feet.


12-08-2006, 03:43 PM   #5
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There is not doubt in my mind that the K100 would serve your needs very well. The shake reduction really is a good idea. It has save a few shots that my wife took that would have been too blurry without it. She can take a lot of shots without a tripod in just room light, without a flash. some are not razor sharp, but very very usable.
Like JKD suggested, the pentax 16-45mm lens is a good one, if you can afford it.
I know in canada some places sell both as a kit and you save a bit of money.
But don't count the kits lens the Pentax 18-55mm out. My wife bought this with her k100 as a combo, making the lens only an extra 100 dollars. It takes great pics, but I have to admit, if I could have talked her into the pentax 16-45mm lens, that would have been the top choice for the price.

good luck on your purchase


12-08-2006, 04:34 PM   #6
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I have three questions:

1) Do you have prior experience using SLR film or digital cameras? (If so did you prefer using zoom or prime lenses?)

2) What are the situations you you will be shooting in? Indoors or outdoors? Parked or moving cars? Small model cars or large trucks? Close by or far away? Car interiors as well as exteriors?

3) What is the intended use for the photographs? E-mail/web site posting, small magazine prints (ads?), large magazine prints (cover page quality), small size prints (4x6 or similar), large size prints (8x10 or larger)?
12-08-2006, 07:39 PM   #7
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k100d body with a sigma 17 - 70mm f2.8 to 4.5 DC macro....

the combination should do most of what u want it to..


ps.. or if u really need to save cash.. the 110d plus the kit lens.. shake reduction is usefull but u can live withoiut it.. bang for buck its a steal..

12-09-2006, 04:47 PM   #8
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Hey I'm greatful for all the responses!

Very helpful.

I'm having trouble locating the lenses listed. If someone could give me a link for everything I'll need that would be great!

Thanks again!

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