Beginner Testing and buying a camera

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#1
Having finished an online photography course, I may need to upgrade from my combination of iPhone X / GoPro Hero7 Black for landscape photography.

Ideally I want to test a range of cameras in a landscape setting, get all of the images on a file and compare the quality to figure out the optimal level of quality against funds invested.
I may attend a photography club and ask people with the same shot on the same day to send me the file - do you guys have a better method to figure out the optimal level of camera to buy?

Also, is Amazon the cheapest place you guys recommend to buy a camera or am I missing a trick?

FWIW, I'm looking at getting a full sensor mirrorless camera - Sony A7R would be bottom of the range here.
 
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Jeremy Moore
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#2
Don't worry too much about testing. Most cameras have been tested in every possible way by the time they have reached the shops! You'll find all the results you'll ever need on the web. The only things you might want to try out is how well they feel in the hand, and/or how easy it is to navigate around the menus, etc. Most bodies these days will give you good results.
 
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Richard
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#4
You can download files from (almost) every camera under the sun* from dpreview.com.

* not so much sun since they moved to Seattle compared with so sunny London ;)
 
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Alistair
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#5
You have an iPhone and GoPro and you want to jump to a Sony A7R?
Have you shot with a DSLR or Interchangeable Lens Camera before? If not, that's quite a jump and learning curve.
The A7R is a good camera, but it's getting a little old, relatively speaking (unless you're talking about the A7RIII).
Try not to get drawn into the megapixel battle. 16-20mp is fine for printing up to A2 if you want big prints and if you're just putting them online, then it'll be fine.
With landscape photography, it's more about being in the right place at the right time with the right light than it is with having the highest megapixel camera.

If Sony is the way you want to go, you might be better served by the A7II.
The problem with Sony is the price of the high quality lenses. With Canon and Nikon you have a large back-catalogue of older but still very good lenses that can be bought cheaper, but Sony lenses, although they are very good are expensive.
That said one of the best bang-for-buck lenses on the Sony E-mount is the Tamron 28-75mm f2.8 which is £729.

If you actually want to try one of these cameras in the field you have two options, either you borrow one off a friend who has one, or you hire one.
WEX have Sony cameras available to hire. The A7III for £60 per day or the A7RIII for £85 per day, then you need to add the cost of the lenses. See here
Hire-A-Camera have a few other options with the older A7RII. See here
The problem with this might be that if you're not so experienced with Interchangable Lens Cameras, it might be such a steep learning curve that you actually need a few days with the camera to get used to it.

If you can't borrow or hire one, go to a good reputable shop and ask to try a few to see how you like them. Different cameras suit different people. Some like the chunkier DSLR style, others like the retro-designed Fujis, some like the Sony's squarer feel.
Try them for weight and shooting experience, how is the electronic view finder and the screen, try the menus too see if you can find the options you need.
Depending on where you are based in the UK, :
London, try Park Cameras or Camera World - both near Oxford Street
UK wide, try London Camera Exchange (branches all over) or worst case, Jessops, or even John Lewis
WEX have a few showrooms too, the big one being in Norwich.

As for buying, you can check out where has the best prices on cameras by looking at Camera Price Buster, see here the current best prices on Sony camera bodies.

Good luck.
 
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Alistair
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#7
That dpreview is good, thanks!
No I haven't. What do you recommend? I will be shooting landscapes, with a person in the foreground (as my watermark :)).
In which case don't limit yourself to just looking at the Sony cameras.
Seriously go to one of the decent camera stores and pick up a few different models and try them in your hands.

It is assumed by many that you need a full frame camera (like the Sony A7 series) to make good landscape photographs, but you can use almost anything; full frame, crop sensor or micro 4/3rds.
With photographing landscapes, you also have to consider that you need to be able to carry all the gear, so weight is an issue.
The last consideration is your budget. If you have £2000 to spend you can get a lot of nice gear, but even if you only have £500, you can still get a good starter setup, especially if you consider secondhand bargains.
I started 10 years ago with a £150 secondhand Sony Alpha 100 DSLR. I'm still using secondhand gear, it's just newer stuff.

I would go to a good store like London Camera Exchange or Camera World or WEX. I would try out:
Sony A7III, (full frame)
Fuji X-T3, (crop sensor)
Canon EOS-RP or Canon 6D Mk2, (full frame)
Nikon Z6 or Nikon D750 (full frame)
Panasonic GH5 (micro 4/3)
Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk2 (micro 4/3)

For almost all of these models, there are older versions which would be cheaper secondhand options. If you go to any of those stores, they will have a few secondhand cameras in store to check out too.

If you like specs (don't get lost in them), DPReview has a comparison tool so you can look at the differences in spec side by side.
Worth looking at if only to consider the weight and size of each one.
For example the Canon 6D Mk2 is 765g, vs the Olympus E-M5 Mk2 which is 469g
Take a look at this comparison here: link
 
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#10
you can use almost anything; full frame, crop sensor or micro 4/3rds.
So you find the step up from 4/3rds to cropped and full sensor isn’t much, but the step up from my current (about 1/2.5”) iPhone or GoPro sensor to 4/3rds would be substantial?

With regard to lenses - is there a particular type of lens I should be looking at for landscapes with a person in the foreground? I can couple this with the price of the body to be more realistic about costs.
 
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#11
So you find the step up from 4/3rds to cropped and full sensor isn’t much, but the step up from my current (about 1/2.5”) iPhone or GoPro sensor to 4/3rds would be substantial?

With regard to lenses - is there a particular type of lens I should be looking at for landscapes with a person in the foreground? I can couple this with the price of the body to be more realistic about costs.
The step up might not be as noticeable as you think.
Again, referencing a feature on the DPReview website, they take test shots with every single camera they can get their hands on of the same scene so we can compare the image quality. Click this link and see the comparison of the iPhone X (phone) vs Sony A7III (full frame) vs Fuji X-T3 (crop sensor) vs Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mk2 (micro 4/3rds).
Plenty of people shoot m4/3 and crop sensor cameras for landscapes and get great images and benefit from the smaller lighter load to carry. Equally some people are happiest shooting with a bulky full frame DSLR or even bigger.
Use the search tool on Flickr to search for example images taken with any camera you like.

As for lenses, you're best off getting an general purpose zoom lens to start with.
If you're on full frame, something like a 24-70mm f4. This covers wide angle and zooming in for closer shots.
On crop sensor, something like a 17-50/18-55mm. This gives a similar equivalent image to the 24-70mm on full frame.
On M4/3s, a 12-40mm lens would be good.

Once you've got to grip with it, you can add more lenses for different shots.

A lot of shops will sell you the camera body with a "kit lens". This is often a good starting point.
For example a Fuji X-T20 (a slightly smaller version of the X-T2) with an 18-55mm lens is £849 currently here.
Or the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mk2 with a 12-40mm lens is £1149 from Amazon
Or the Sony A7III with a 28-70mm lens for £1995 from here
These are all brand new prices, if you look at secondhand cameras and lenses you can save a huge amount. I'm not sure if MPB ship to Ireland, but they are one of the best places to look for secondhand camera gear.

If you look at landscape photographers on youtube, you'll see they use lots of different cameras; Thomas Heaton shoots with Canon, Simon Baxter shoots with Sony and Nigel Danson shoots Nikon and Fuji. But I doubt, if you look at their images you'll be able to tell what camera they used.
On a youtube note, check out Brendan Van Son, he's known for travel and landscape photography and also for putting himself or his girlfriend into the foreground. You might find that interesting.
 
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#12
Another amazing response, thank you!

That link at DPReview is amazing for comparisons- I'm wondering is it all laid out on a big table, they take one photo on each camera and then we compare the zoomed images?
It's a pity they don't have a landscape, or something with a sky in the background in this comparison, unless you know something similar online?
 
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#13
Didn't the online course give any ideas as to which camera/lens for which purpose? I would have thought that ANY course would start with the basics before anything else.
it is handy to know for example a macro lens is no good for landscapes but ideal for small subjects. Then even down to discuss what type of camera is best for your needs.

This is why I am very much anti courses but prefer to practise and develope what I am happy with even if it is not technically correct
 
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#14
I agree with this statement reguarding sensor size.

Generally, full-frame cameras provide not only better low light & high ISO performance, but a better dynamic range. These factors combined eventually produces a much better image output than any crop-sensor camera can achieve.
Full-frame cameras are capable of capturing the most light and will almost always out-perform an APS-C or Micro-Four-Thirds camera body under low-light conditions. Micro-Four-Thirds sensors don’t perform well under low-light conditions where the ISO needs to be cranked up to say, above 2000.
For these reasons, despite full-frame camera kits being expensive, bulky and heavy to carry around, they are still industry-standard and the preferred cameras for virtually all professional photography work.
 
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#15
As an aside, when you have identified the camera/lens combination you want, it may be worth checking the duty-free shops when you travel between the two countries as you will avoid paying duty on it, saving a bit of money hopefully. But I'd try for 2nd hand really because once you've bought something that way and tried it out well, to know better what you like and don't like, you can trade it in or sell and buy something you prefer without losing too much in the process.
 
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Richard
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#16
Another amazing response, thank you!

That link at DPReview is amazing for comparisons- I'm wondering is it all laid out on a big table, they take one photo on each camera and then we compare the zoomed images?
It's a pity they don't have a landscape, or something with a sky in the background in this comparison, unless you know something similar online?
Dpreview’s been going for 20 years and kept remarkably close to the same format over the years so they are useful for comparisons but you shouldn’t treat them as your only source but only as a starting point or to go back and check on something.
The reason I referred you there was that you were asking for files from different cameras to compare. If you go to any camera that’s been reviewed on dpreview you will find a gallery of photos, many taken the same sorts of places with different cameras (at different times) but mostly on basic settings and where possible similar lenses.
Personally, I think you are overthinking though, lots of good advice earlier about handling etc etc.
 
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#17
When choosing what mirrorless camera to go for, don't get too hung up on battery life.

When I got my X-T20, coming from a DSLR, I was concerned about battery life so did everything I could to save battery so turned it off the second the photo was captured, screen brightness down to min, etc, but in reality, there is no need to worry, I've just had a week in Devon and used the camera every day and didn't have to charge it once.
 
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#18
Micro-Four-Thirds sensors don’t perform well under low-light conditions where the ISO needs to be cranked up to say, above 2000.
Technically yes,. But practically? It's not so clear cut.

That depends on subject. IBIS in a micro 4/3 body means handholding at ISO200 and 0.5s exposure is an option. And not all low light stuff is done without a tripod. Micro 4/3 offers some decent video options. And pricing / size of the likes of the EM10ii and Em5ii and GX9 are favourable - sometimes very favourable.

People tend to talk about cars in terms of edge case parameters being measurable benefits of one over another (yeah so it does 155 mph - or a 4.5s 0-60 .... how often do you use those). Or rear wheel drive vs front wheel drive benefitting handling. Meantime a whole bunch of people buy 4WD cars which will never see anything more challenging other than a potholed hardcore carpark.

Same problem with cameras. ISO and frames per second are sort of measurable. Dynamic range - sort of arguably measurable. But actual value of performance vs cost in the real world. IMO less measurable.

The real differentiator in the results that are achievable with micro 4/3, or APS-C, or FF is the level of commitment and persistence and not the equipment. It's all good enough these days. You might argue that AF performace or some other feature is critical - but only in some circumstances - and even then we seemed to cope without variable or extended ISO and AF in the past. Doesn't mean you want to cope without them - but equally some stuff is less important than the headline comparators might suggrest.

When I see some stunning images on these forums or elsewhere I'm rarely struck by the idea that you needed a particular camera type to get the result. Lenses yes. Mindset, imagination, and perception yes. Skill yes. Use of lighting yes. Patience yes. Clever post processing yes. Opportunity - right time right place through persistence or planning - yes. APS-C, FF. micro 4/3 ..... or so called medium format .... or 35mm or MF film ..... so what?
 
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#19
What specs make a lens a good one?

Apart from knowing that I want a wide angle lens for photography, not videos, what do I look for when shopping online to tell which is better quality?

Thanks for all the help!
 

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Stewart
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#20
What specs make a lens a good one?

Apart from knowing that I want a wide angle lens for photography, not videos, what do I look for when shopping online to tell which is better quality?
If you could please define "quality", we might be able to help you more readily.
 
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#21
What specs make a lens a good one?

Apart from knowing that I want a wide angle lens for photography, not videos, what do I look for when shopping online to tell which is better quality?

Thanks for all the help!
"Quality" does need a little defining and you could do with giving some sort of idea of budget.
There's no point anyone saying you have to buy the "highest quality" lens for £2000.

Most of the lens makers have a couple of different product lines.
What makes it a "good" lens kinda depends what you want out of it.
Here's some examples from Canon (as I know these best), Canon produce "kits lenses" for their low cost DSLRs. These are the ones that come with the camera. So a Canon 200D will come with the EF-S 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 kit lens. This is a basic get-you-going lens. It can produce good results, but has it's limitations and it's cheaply made of plastic. It'll cost you £50 secondhand.
Next up from Canon is a mid-range series that are built better, have higher quality plastic, better quality glass and often a wider aperture. So one example is the Canon EF-S 17-55mm f2.8 IS USM. Even secondhand, this lens will cost you around £400.
Lastly Canon has the L series (L stands for Luxury). They have the red ring around the end of the lens. These are the lenses that are professional grade, built very well, often have weather sealing, have far better glass and are heavier and more expensive.
The Canon EF 24-70mm f2.8 L Mk2 is the standard zoom lens in this range and will cost you £1200 secondhand.

The advantage of going for Canon or Nikon DSLRs is that there are loads of secondhand lenses available so that you can pick up "high quality" lenses for less.
With Sony full frame cameras, there are fewer secondhand lenses around so you'll be paying higher prices.

You really need to go into a shop and decide which camera you find best in your hand and to use (controls, ergonomics, easy of use, etc), get one within your budget and then think about lenses.
If you don't try one in store, you could end up buying one camera online, having it delivered and then finding that it's not great to hold (small camera in big hands or vice versa for example) or that you don't like the electronic viewfinder or you hate the location of the controls.

I'd recommend getting a camera with a kit lens first, take lots of photos and then work out if you *need* a wider angle lens or even a longer lens. Then look at what's available for your camera and in your budget. Go from there.
 
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#22
If I were getting into landscape photography now, with the benefit of almost 10 years experience I'd prioritise lightweight kit - I shoot full frame Nikon with f2.8 lenses and have just started to get into wild camping, and lugging all that gear is painfully heavy to the point it can feel too draining to get the camera out of the bag. I've also recently injured my shoulder and the weight means I can't carry my bag at the minute, it's made me realise how crazy we are to lug this gear up mountains etc, even if I love the results.
 
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#23
If I were getting into landscape photography now, with the benefit of almost 10 years experience I'd prioritise lightweight kit - I shoot full frame Nikon with f2.8 lenses and have just started to get into wild camping, and lugging all that gear is painfully heavy to the point it can feel too draining to get the camera out of the bag. I've also recently injured my shoulder and the weight means I can't carry my bag at the minute, it's made me realise how crazy we are to lug this gear up mountains etc, even if I love the results.
I wouldn't say it's crazy

I lugged 1x D810 and 1x D800 with a 70-200 F2.8 and a 20F1.8 24, 35, 50 F1.4 Sigma art in my camera back in the Alps and Pyrenees. It wasn't light and wouldn't want to do it with a gammy shoulder (just a gammy back for me) but I wouldn't not want to go all that way and not get the optical goodness that comes from expensive lenses and bodies. I'd just wonder "what if" if I carried up cheaper gear - I go to take pictures hence the camera gear uses comes first and foremost. If you go for the hike and want pictures of that as a secondary concern - aye lightweight budget gear but if you are a photographer you want to bring your best stuff and use it to your best ability.

The mirrorless bodies might be lighter - but the lenses aren't particularly so that route isn't much of a saver.

In the Alps you can stay in refuges which cuts down the "camping gear" and asides I hate camping - I would just walk through the night or early morning and don a head torch. Anything but camp!!!

One thing - if you are committed to using the gear you have - why not visit a place prior to photographing it - work out what lens(s) you need and just take that when you go back.

For instance I lugged a load of gear up some place and once back I saw I only kept the shots taken at 35mm. I will go back with just the body and 35mm sigma ART attached - why carry gear I won't use.

For Chamonix I will just take the 70-200 next time - it's all I used. For Ibon de Piedrafita just the 14-24 -I wouldn't want anything long there - thus why carry it.

Locally I know all my compositions and travel very light so it keeps the weight down.
 
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#24
Next up from Canon is a mid-range series that are built better, have higher quality plastic, better quality glass and often a wider aperture.

the lenses that are professional grade, built very well, often have weather sealing, have far better glass and are heavier and more expensive.
The quality of the glass is what makes the photo appear sharper?
I assume the quality of plastic and weather sealing only matters if I'm not careful.

As for a budget, not more than 2k for a camera and lens combo, cheaper the better depending how much quality is compromised.

Thanks again.
 
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Steve
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#25
The quality of the glass is what makes the photo appear sharper?.
Sort of.

If a camera has an AA (anti aliasing) filter it won't be as crisp as one without - even with the same resolution sensor (google D810 vs D800)

A Full frame camera of the same resolution as a crop sensor one will also have a sharpness advantage.

Good sharpness comes also from good technique - using a tripod - cable release/self timer and focusing. Get that wrong and no fancy gear will save you.

I assume the quality of plastic and weather sealing only matters if I'm not careful.
Define careful. If you decide to shoot seascapes weather sealing becomes a biggy.

As for a budget, not more than 2k for a camera and lens combo, cheaper the better depending how much quality is compromised.

Thanks again.
Have you considered use gear - a short trawl through the classifieds here has brought up some lovely cameras and lenses for within this budget.

Edit - I've found four adverts from respected members here that I would personally buy if I was in the market for replacement/new gear.

https://www.talkphotography.co.uk/threads/nikon-d810-22k-shutter-count-£1050delivered.689245/

https://www.talkphotography.co.uk/threads/nikon-16-35-f4-vr-£500-rmsd-boxed.696302/

See these first two - £1650 - leaves change for a tripod and some filters.

https://www.talkphotography.co.uk/t...-ed-now-reduced-or-swap-for-fuji-lens.695998/

Lose the 16-35 and get a cheaper wide lens - more room for a 50mm prime and/or better tripod/more fillters

https://www.talkphotography.co.uk/threads/d700-d750-lenses-flash-accessories-galore.695919/

Just loads here. The D750 if you don't want a D810.

Wonderful selection of gear for a dude in the market for a nice camera and lens for landscapes :D
 
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Alistair
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#26
Don't get hung up on needing a wide-angle lens for landscapes.
Look at this thread about "Most used Landscape lens". There's a huge variety between those who use a 16-35mm most of the time to those that swear by the 24-70mm.
https://www.talkphotography.co.uk/threads/your-most-used-landscape-lens.696074/

What to buy there are so many options within that £2k budget.
You could go for a secondhand Sony A7II with a 16-35mm or swap that for a Tamron 28-75.
Or a Canon EOS RP with a secondhand 16-35mm f4 L.
Or a Canon 6D with a 24-70mm f4 L
Or a Fuji X-T2 with a 16-55 f2.8
...

For landscapes, I'd definitely make sure you budget at least £2-300 for a decent tripod and rucksack and maybe even some filters too.
A £2k budget seems like a lot, but it's tricky to decide where to spend the money.
 
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#27
Jessops have a cracking offer on at the moment for a D750 with 24-120 G-VR lens for less that £1500. My mate has just bought one on my recommendation and he loves it (as I do mine)
You cannot go wrong with that combo and it will leave you around £500 for the other bits of stuff you will need.
 
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#28
Thanks for the responses guys and sorry for such a late response! All prices I’ve found are second hand.

CAMERA

As I never use a tripod, I’m guessing image stabilization is important for me (even though most photos will be in good light so can have a fast shutter speed), and will buy a second hand Sony A7II as my camera body for £650.

I agree that hand holding the camera and seeing if I like the feel of it is important. Do most cameras of the same brand tend to feel the same? I won’t have a chance to visit a shop for a couple of weeks, but if I don’t like the Sony feel, my backups are Nikon D750 (£625) or Canon 6D (£500) or 5D Mark II (£369) –but they don’t have image stabilization and are all heavier.

LENS

I’ve been googling, then treating the Dxomark score as a benchmark on how good it is.

I’m still unsure what focal lengh I want – I use my gopro hero 7 a lot which is apparently 16mm, so I’m leaning towards the Sony FE 16-35mm f4 (£789).

Other lenses I’m interested in are Sony FE 12-24mm f4 (£1116) and Sony E 10-18mm f4 (£269). If I were to start at a very cheap lens, to find out what focal length I need, Sony E 16-50mm f3.5-5.6 (£79) could be a good starting point.

Dxomark don’t show all of these lenses for some reason – does anybody know why? Is there a good alternative that can quantify the quality of a lens like Dxomark does?

Finally, this is assuming all Sony E and FE lenses will fit onto the A7II.

Any suggestions on other lenses would be appreciated! Low weight is an aspect I’ve been focusing on also. Thanks :)
 
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Rob
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#29
Thanks for the responses guys and sorry for such a late response! All prices I’ve found are second hand.

CAMERA

As I never use a tripod, I’m guessing image stabilization is important for me (even though most photos will be in good light so can have a fast shutter speed), and will buy a second hand Sony A7II as my camera body for £650.

I agree that hand holding the camera and seeing if I like the feel of it is important. Do most cameras of the same brand tend to feel the same? I won’t have a chance to visit a shop for a couple of weeks, but if I don’t like the Sony feel, my backups are Nikon D750 (£625) or Canon 6D (£500) or 5D Mark II (£369) –but they don’t have image stabilization and are all heavier.

LENS

I’ve been googling, then treating the Dxomark score as a benchmark on how good it is.

I’m still unsure what focal lengh I want – I use my gopro hero 7 a lot which is apparently 16mm, so I’m leaning towards the Sony FE 16-35mm f4 (£789).

Other lenses I’m interested in are Sony FE 12-24mm f4 (£1116) and Sony E 10-18mm f4 (£269). If I were to start at a very cheap lens, to find out what focal length I need, Sony E 16-50mm f3.5-5.6 (£79) could be a good starting point.

Dxomark don’t show all of these lenses for some reason – does anybody know why? Is there a good alternative that can quantify the quality of a lens like Dxomark does?

Finally, this is assuming all Sony E and FE lenses will fit onto the A7II.

Any suggestions on other lenses would be appreciated! Low weight is an aspect I’ve been focusing on also. Thanks :)
You need to make sure you are looking at full frame lenses if the A7ii is the camera you are thinking of. The Sony 10-18mm is a lens designed to fit APC-S cameras. It may fit a full frame camera but it would have a severe vignette making it pretty much useless on a full frame camera.
 
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#31
FE refers to the mount when it's on a full frame camera. On an APS-C Its called the E-mount. Fe merely denotes the lens being capable of covering a full frame sensor. All e mount lenses work on all e mountcameras.” dpreview.com definition.
 
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#32
Thanks for the responses guys and sorry for such a late response! All prices I’ve found are second hand.

CAMERA

As I never use a tripod, I’m guessing image stabilization is important for me (even though most photos will be in good light so can have a fast shutter speed), and will buy a second hand Sony A7II as my camera body for £650.

I agree that hand holding the camera and seeing if I like the feel of it is important. Do most cameras of the same brand tend to feel the same? I won’t have a chance to visit a shop for a couple of weeks, but if I don’t like the Sony feel, my backups are Nikon D750 (£625) or Canon 6D (£500) or 5D Mark II (£369) –but they don’t have image stabilization and are all heavier.
Don't get hung up on "in-body stabilisation". If you are shooting in good light, then so long as your shutter speed is the reciprocal of your focal length, you shouldn't get camera shake. EG if you are shooting at 50mm, you only need to be at a shutter speed of 1/50th of a sec to avoid shake. If you are using longer lenses then it needs to be fast shutter speeds, eg on a 300mm lens, you need to be at 1/300th/s or faster.
Many lenses have image stabilisation which means it's not needed in the body.
In-body stabilisation is most useful if you are shooting video, particularly with prime lenses that don't have IS. And as a whole image stabilisation is also useful if shooting in low light situations. But if you mostly envisage shooting outdoors in daylight, then it's not a deal killer in anyway.

Your backup options are good. The D750 is a fine camera and the Canon 6D is great (I have one and love it). The 5D Mk2 is a bit old and is not so good in low light.

I really do recommend visiting a shop before purchasing, you wouldn't buy a car without seeing it in person, would you?
The Sony A7 series have a great reputation for quality images and tech specs, but some people don't like the overly complicated menus or the "boxy-feel" of the body when you're holding it.
The Nikon D750 and Canon 6D will be chunkier to hold but the ergonomics and feel-in-the-hand has had years of development from those companies. Button layout is a big thing too. Are they all in logical, easy-to-reach places? It also depends on how big your hands are, some cameras are better for small hands others for big hands but everybody is different. How will it feel after holding it for longer periods?

I'd personally rather have a camera that is better in my hands and the controls make sense than one that has lots of bells and whistles that I won't use.
If you buy a camera without trying it at least in store, you may end up wanting to swap it later and then losing money. That's the risk you have to decide if you want to take.
 

StephenM

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#33
If you are shooting in good light, then so long as your shutter speed is the reciprocal of your focal length, you shouldn't get camera shake. EG if you are shooting at 50mm, you only need to be at a shutter speed of 1/50th of a sec to avoid shake.
The ability to hand hold is going to depend on a lot of variables, not least the photographer. Try hand holding and keeping steady after strenuous exercise...

I can only speak from personal experience, but from tests carried out when I was 18 and (presumably) at least as fit as I am now, I found that with a 50mm lens on a 35mm SLR I could detect the difference in sharpness between 1/125 and 1/250. As I did this in daylight, I doubt I had to use the lens wide open for the 1/250 photo.

You can test your own ability (at no cost, with a digital camera) by fixing up a pencil torch in a dark room and photographing it several times with a range of shutter speeds. That should indicate what always works, what never works, and what sometimes works for you, with your camera.
 
OP
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#34
I held the camera in the store today and I like it!
I plan to buy both the body and lens from Park Cameras - if anybody sees anything wrong with what I'm buying or knows a cheaper place to buy either please let me know!

Body - £499
Lens - £759

Thanks :)
 
OP
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#35
I have the camera, but there's some dirt coming out on ALL photos - does this mean I need the lens cleaned (see top right of photo)?

dirt.jpg
 
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#36
I have the camera, but there's some dirt coming out on ALL photos - does this mean I need the lens cleaned (see top right of photo)?

View attachment 253528

Looks like the sensor on the camera needs cleaned rather than the lens.

Give the sensor a good blow over with a rocket blower and check it again.

Looks like you haven't be careful changing lenses or whoever had the camera before you has exposed the sensor when changing lenses etc.
 
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#37
I have the camera, but there's some dirt coming out on ALL photos - does this mean I need the lens cleaned (see top right of photo)?

View attachment 253528
If you bought the camera from a reputable shop/dealer and it was like that when you bought it (check the first few photos you took with it for any signs of dust) then take it back to the shop and point out the issue, taking some proof with you (a couple of dated prints) and politely complain. I would think they'll clean the sensor free of charge for you as a gesture of goodwill.

If your first photos with the camera were fine and clear of any signs of dust, and the issue has occurred since you bought the camera, then it will be down to you to get the sensor cleaned. As you're new to photography, if I were in your position, I'd pay to have the sensor professionally cleaned by a reputable camera technician rather than risk damaging something by trying to clean it myself. Hope these suggestions are useful.
 
Last edited:
OP
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#38
Yeah I meant to write sensor, thank you.

As I'm a newbie I guess it's best to pay to get the sensor professionally cleaned.

What's a fair price for this roughly? I'm in Turkey so guess it would be cheaper here than UK.
 
OP
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#40
Thanks guys I'll try a rocket blower.
What type of shop can I find one in?
Online shipping is pricey and slow where I am (Turkey).
Thanks.
 
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