Upgrading to DSLR
I currently have a Lumix DNC-ZS8 point and shoot. I like it a great deal and am generally pretty happy with the quality, but it's limited and I've been thinking about upgrading to a DSLR.
My issue is money - I'd prefer to spend no more than $800 or so, all inclusive. My understanding is that in general, most recent DSLR bodies - especially Canons and Nikons - are perfectly acceptable for hobbyist and travel photography, and that more money should be spent on the lens. So, basically I'm looking for recommendations. My current plan is to get a cheaper body like the Rebel XS or the Nikon D3100, a cheaper all-in-one such as the Tamron 18-200, and then a 50mm prime for standard higher quality shooting. In general, I tend to take landscape/architecture shots, though in the near future my wife and I may start a family, so I'd want something to capture children (hence the 50mm). Are there inexpensive options I'm missing that would give me more flexibility?
Thanks for any replies!
I would say you are thinking along the right lines although Canon/Nikon/whatever is more a matter of personal preference rather than equipment capabilities - remember that once you buy-in to a system you will be reluctant to swap, particularly once you start buying lenses. My advice is always to visit a dealer and try the equipment in the shop - take along memory cards and you can review sharpness, etc. back at home .....
My first DSLR was a Canon 350D and was preferred to the comparable Nikon on the basis of how the camera (at that time) fit my hands. Shortly after buying the 350D with a kit lens I upgraded to a Tamron 18-200mm XR Di II and have sold more work from that particular combination than from any other (I currently use a 5DII). I would generally advise against a wide range zoom (i.e. 18-300mm) as they tend to be optically less capable (though opinions will differ and, at the end of the day, it's down to personal preference again). You may even find the 18-200mm more useful than a 50mm when photographing children once they are moving about .....
Paul (Scudmonkey) has given very good advice. You can't go wrong as far as quality is concerned with either Nikon or Canon. Do try them out in the shop as the way the camera handles is just as important as the lens.
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