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01-28-2009, 10:27 AM   #31
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hmmmmm, I bought an Xsi as a backup to my 40D, and I have no problems getting sharp photos. I shoot 100% RAW so I can't speak to the JPG processing, but I was just going through some ISO100, f/2 bounced flash shots with my 85mm f/1.8, and they are as sharp as can be. I was even able to nail focus right on the eyes/eyelashes. What lenses were you using?

QuoteOriginally posted by alderfall Quote
Well, I can't help but get involved here.

I gave up on Canon due to the XSi. I can't think of a less reasonable example of a prosumer or enthusiast DSLR. I'm sorry that I ever ordered one and used it. Let me explain...

The XSi, and most under $1,000 Canon cameras I have found, shoot very soft photos. I find them so soft that my stomach turns.
As for the original query, I think either camera would work fine. I prefered Pentax ergonomics when I shot with my K10D, but the 40D and Xsi are both fine performers. I think the questions you need to ask yourself are -
-Will I be fine with the lens system? Pentax has some excellent lenses (especially primes), but if you ever want to get involved in wildlife photography, Canon has the edge on long lenses
-Will I be fine with 3 frames per second? If you decide to stick with Canon, you can upgrade bodies to get a 6.5FPS (40/50D) and keep your existing lens invesment.
-Any desire to go Full-frame? Again, Canon has the edge here (for now at least)

That said, there is nothing inherent in either of the two bodies by themselves that would automatically sway me one way or the other regarding image quality, but there are some "big picture" issues like I mentioned above.

01-28-2009, 11:04 AM   #32
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Hello egordon!

I was speaking about JPEG processing specifically, sorry for the confusion. I tried numerous lenses, some specifically for wildlife shots (including the use of a Canon EF 600mm f/4L IS USM for a day).

I feel that any/all of the single digit model number Canon bodies as well as a few second tier units are excellent tools for photography. However, I remain unimpressed with the Rebel line of Canon units overall. I already stated my reasons for this (and I should have clarified that I was remarking specifically regarding JPEG processing). I shoot both JPEG and RAW on almost all of my shots myself with the Pentax K200D. However, I am not really super big into post processing. I am more content with doing my best and letting the image speak for itself.

Ultimately, I feel there are several P&S cameras that provide the same image quality you would get from a Rebel body without the expense, if you are shooting essentially "auto" on both the Rebel and the P&S camera.

Also, you are correct on the full frame argument, for now. I don't doubt that Pentax will be right in there, mixing it up and I hope to be right there picking up my two Pentax bodies to go shoot. One K200D and the oh so wonderful (optimistically speaking) full frame Pentax.




QuoteOriginally posted by egordon99 Quote
hmmmmm, I bought an Xsi as a backup to my 40D, and I have no problems getting sharp photos. I shoot 100% RAW so I can't speak to the JPG processing, but I was just going through some ISO100, f/2 bounced flash shots with my 85mm f/1.8, and they are as sharp as can be. I was even able to nail focus right on the eyes/eyelashes. What lenses were you using?



As for the original query, I think either camera would work fine. I prefered Pentax ergonomics when I shot with my K10D, but the 40D and Xsi are both fine performers. I think the questions you need to ask yourself are -
-Will I be fine with the lens system? Pentax has some excellent lenses (especially primes), but if you ever want to get involved in wildlife photography, Canon has the edge on long lenses
-Will I be fine with 3 frames per second? If you decide to stick with Canon, you can upgrade bodies to get a 6.5FPS (40/50D) and keep your existing lens invesment.
-Any desire to go Full-frame? Again, Canon has the edge here (for now at least)

That said, there is nothing inherent in either of the two bodies by themselves that would automatically sway me one way or the other regarding image quality, but there are some "big picture" issues like I mentioned above.
01-28-2009, 11:08 AM   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by madbrain Quote
It's not really predictable exactly when it happens unfortunately. But it tends to be worse for indoor shots or in poor light conditions - it's especially maddening for indoor shots when using flash
Ah, flash. That's another matter entirely.
01-28-2009, 11:10 AM   #34
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Oh yeah, sticking a Rebel on AUTO is a recipe for disappointment, especially since you have no say in which AF point the camera selects. Couple that with the shallower DOF compared to P&Ss, and you have beginner photographers complaining about fuzzy people and sharp blades of grass in the foreground.

For me, the Xsi provides an EXCELLENT CMOS sensor (even up to ISO1600) a very good and accurate AF system, and an EF mount for my lenses. I almost bought a 30D as a backup, but I saw some impressive reviews of the Xsi (especially re. image quality) so I (a former "Rebels are junk" dude) said "what the heck!" I usually keep my 85 mounted on my Xsi and my Sigma 30mm f/1.4 on my 40D (they both "share" my single 580EXII)

But yeah, I could see someone who just shoots on AUTO might be better served by a G10 or something. I was interested in a G10 as a pocket/take anywhere cam, but seeing how "well" it did at ISO800, I quickly abandonded that idea. My "pocket" camera is now my Xsi/30mm. NO WAY any P&S could approach the image quality of that pair

01-28-2009, 11:14 AM   #35
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Ditto....Pretty much all the "entry" level APS-C bodies today (Xsi, K200D, D60) all perform VERY well at high ISOs (not as good as a full-frame body, but WAAAAYYYYYY better than any P&S)

QuoteOriginally posted by madbrain Quote
One day I shot the moon at 800 ISO. The next day I showed the camera to a coworker and we shot our work campus in bright sun ...
I looked at the pics. They were completely fine. It was only when I looked at the EXIF that I noticed that they were taken at 800 ISO. I didn't tell my coworker about it until after he looked at them. He thought they looked just fine.
My son's FIRST X-mas morning, I accidentally had my Xsi on ISO1600, I was shooting wide aperture AND flash, and didn't notice until I got the images into Bridge that they were ISO1600. Except for some noise in the very dark shadows, they look excellent!
01-28-2009, 11:14 AM   #36
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QuoteOriginally posted by scatron Quote
(re: Eneloops)
They're just rechargeable batteries with a longer shelf life.
But more to the point as regards Pentax DSLR's, they also manage to mantain their voltage at a higher level for more shots, independently of how long they last when not in use. So after 300 shot, they might still be producing 1.3 volts when a typical NiMH cells will be down to 1.1 (and if you search these forums, you'll see charts giving the actual numbers - I just made those up). This means you can usually get more shots out of them than with typical NiMH cells, because the camera gives up on the batteries when the voltage drops below some certain level.

Eneloop is a brand name (made by sanyo), but there are similar ones out there marketed by Duracell, Ray-O-Vac, and others. They are usually advertised as being "pre-charged" and having longer shelf-life when not in use, and that's all well and good, but has nothing to do with what makes them so useful in Pentax cameras. It's all about maintaining voltage. Anyone who ever complained about battery life with a Pentax AA camera never tried one of these cells.
01-28-2009, 11:18 AM   #37
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I LOVE Eneloops! Not only do they provide power for my flash, having five sets of them is invaluable when you have a nine month old at home, and one of his toys runs out of "juice"....Instead of going "dang, we're out of AAs", I just go into my camera bag and grab as many as I need....I just have to remember WHERE I stuck them so I can retrieve them for my next photo shoot
01-28-2009, 11:37 AM   #38
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K200D is weather sealed, has a rigid stainless-steel frame, in-body image stabilization (through sensor shift) which works with ancient lenses, K10D's sensor and several features that help with removing dust on the sensor. The Rebel (a.k.a. Kiss in Japan) is a plastic toy.

Set K200D's AF to center point and metering to center weighted and you'll be happy.

01-28-2009, 12:10 PM   #39
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And, just as an aside, do any of you use Sony Cycle Energy AA's? I have a whole slough of them and am wondering about your past experience. So far I have enjoyed using them in other devices and I have yet to put a set of them in my K200D.

Cycle Energy Batteries, blue rechargeable batteries, Cycle Energy Battery

Thanks!

Jason


QuoteOriginally posted by egordon99 Quote
I LOVE Eneloops! Not only do they provide power for my flash, having five sets of them is invaluable when you have a nine month old at home, and one of his toys runs out of "juice"....Instead of going "dang, we're out of AAs", I just go into my camera bag and grab as many as I need....I just have to remember WHERE I stuck them so I can retrieve them for my next photo shoot
01-28-2009, 12:15 PM   #40
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They have the same characteristics as Sanyo Eneloop so worth watching out for in the UK, not seen mention of them anywhere yet.
01-28-2009, 01:24 PM   #41
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Would these eneloop things be ene-use (see what I did there? ) in my flashgun? I've had really poor performance from brand new AA cells (the flash often reporting low battery straight away) and of course being rechargeables the eneloops are lower voltage, 1.2v instead of 1.5v.
01-28-2009, 01:32 PM   #42
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I use ONLY eneloops in my 580EXII, and previously used them in my Pentax 540. They will work fine!
01-28-2009, 02:07 PM   #43
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QuoteOriginally posted by Vormulac Quote
Would these eneloop things be ene-use (see what I did there? ) in my flashgun? I've had really poor performance from brand new AA cells (the flash often reporting low battery straight away) and of course being rechargeables the eneloops are lower voltage, 1.2v instead of 1.5v.
I suppose you'd want to try to see - who knows how voltage-sensitive your flash actually is. I can say for me, Eneloops make tons of sense in my flash, because I hardly ever use it. Here, the (much) greater shelf life is exactly the advantage it is advertised as. A normal set of NiMH cells would be dead after six months of non-use; Eneloops still good to go. And my flash easily goes six months between uses (whereas my camera has probably never gone six *days* without use - and I'm sure there are those who report theirs doesn't go six *hours*...)
01-28-2009, 02:08 PM   #44
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Okay, I'll weigh in here on just a couple of points.

First, jpeg image quality is adjustable in camera. Spend 15 minutes with your $1000 purchase and you'll quickly be able to set either camera to look however you like. My K100D had jpegs that drew rave reviews. My K10D was knocked for having poor jpegs. Yet in 5 minutes I was able to adjust the settings in camera (boosting sharpness and saturation to my tastes) so that the K10D now looked just like the K100D. You can do the same with the Rebel.

Secondly, exposure is also adjustable, but mainly how Pentax addresses exposure and how Canon addresses exposure are fundamentally different. Canon doesn't "protect the highlights", meaning you're more prone to lose detail in ("blow out") the highlights. Pentax protects the highlights, but may lose a little detail in the shadows. Both methods are equally valid, and if you shoot raw (and you definitely should), both methods are pretty much moot.

Finally, when I used AA's in my K100D, I regularly got over 500 shots on a standard set of NiMH's. When hybrids (like the eneloops) came along, I got maybe a little more, but the batteries didn't self-discharge nearly as bad, meaning they'll sit with a usable charge for weeks instead of days. Also, if I was travelling, I'd just go with a set of non-rechargable lithium cells and I'd get well over 1000 shots, which usually covered my travel. Also, a second set in my luggage was much lighter and less bulky that the charger for the NiMH's.

To me, the big advantage Pentax has is the in-body shake reduction. It really does work, and it's on every lens you attach, whether it's a brand new lens, or a 40 year old used lens. Canon and Nikon users are quick to point out that shake reduction isn't that necessary in shorter focal lengths, which is generally true. However, I wonder how many hand held, free standing (non-braced) shots they've taken at 18mm and 1.5 seconds?



I think you've answered your question since you like how the K200D feels. That's a big plus. If you like holding and operating the camera, you'll use it more and figure out how to make it take the shots you want.

Last edited by rfortson; 01-28-2009 at 02:35 PM.
01-28-2009, 03:24 PM   #45
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
But more to the point as regards Pentax DSLR's, they also manage to mantain their voltage at a higher level for more shots, independently of how long they last when not in use. So after 300 shot, they might still be producing 1.3 volts when a typical NiMH cells will be down to 1.1 (and if you search these forums, you'll see charts giving the actual numbers - I just made those up). This means you can usually get more shots out of them than with typical NiMH cells, because the camera gives up on the batteries when the voltage drops below some certain level.

Eneloop is a brand name (made by sanyo), but there are similar ones out there marketed by Duracell, Ray-O-Vac, and others. They are usually advertised as being "pre-charged" and having longer shelf-life when not in use, and that's all well and good, but has nothing to do with what makes them so useful in Pentax cameras. It's all about maintaining voltage. Anyone who ever complained about battery life with a Pentax AA camera never tried one of these cells.
Thanks - much appreciated. I know this is still off topic from the op, but one more question (b/c I'm in desperate need of new batts) - since they're NiMH, I can use my standard NiMH charger, right?

thanks!
steve
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