Camera Query: How to select?

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Pankaj Kumar

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Mar 1, 2011, 1:45:33 PM3/1/11
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How to SELECT?

Before selecting, the foremost thing is to decide your budget. You may
be lured by better cameras once you started knowing about them hence
you will have to limit yourself with the budget, i.e., stop looking at
anything beyond your budget. You may at times feel like, "ok if I add
few more thousands to my budget then after 2-3 months I will buy
another and better camera!!". But remember, companies keep on
releasing new models throughout the year and hence better models keep
coming. After 3 months you may realise that there is still a better
option which you have to wait for another few months and this goes
on.....so STOP AND LOOK AT WHAT YOU HAVE AVAILABLE AT THE SHOPS,
unless you are planning to go for a very high end camera.

One more thing you should remember that buying during festive seasons
may give you lot of discounts and other accessory offers. For people
living outside India, especially in Europe or USA, the best time to
get many offers are during Christmas sale. You really get some
extraordinarily cheap rates.

Once you have fixed your budget, its time for setting up your priorities:

1. Sensor Size (Bigger the sensor size, better better should be the
result. Sensor can usually be of two types, CMOS or CCD. There is no
clearcut distinction about which is better, but CMOS use less power,
are faster and comparatively cheaper than CCD).
2. Megapixel (at optimum size, 10 megapixel is good enough, you may
think of 12 megapixel too, but always remember, that you need an
external storage device for all your pictures and a bigger flash card
too. Most of us are not planning to get a door size printouts of our
pictures, hence limiting yourself to 12 megapixel is a good idea).
3. Body Size (some cameras are heavy and in field at times you really
find it to be too heavy and curse yourself for carrying it especially
on long or high altitude treks.)
4. Modes: Look out for the MANUAL mode. Any camera with MANUAL mode
gives you more option to create your own modes for taking shots. If
you are looking for closeup shots then look for availability of MACRO
mode and also look for the minimum closeup distance of the lens. Its
usually written on the lens or the camera body. Also look for the
placement of FLASH on the camera at the minimum closeup distance.
Because if you want to use flash on macro mode then it castes a shadow
of the hood on the subject. Ability to use flash in macro is always a
good option. In compact cameras and prosumers, if you have a camera
with lens which doesnt pop out then its always good. This technology
is called INTERNAL FOCUSING (IF) and its written on the lens or body
for DSLRs. For compact cameras, this is a good option as it doesnot
caste shadow of the hood on the subject.
5. Attachment options: Some lower end camera also comes with accessory
lens (attaching other wideangle or telezoom lens) and extra flash
attachment options. So if such options are available then its good to
enhance your creativity as well as the usage of you camera.

REMEMBER, A GOOD CAMERA WILL NOT GIVE YOU GOOD RESULTS. IT ALWAYS
DEPEND ON YOUR OWN ABILITY TO USE A CAMERA PROPERLY TO GET THE BEST
RESULTS OUT OF IT.

Regards
Pankaj

--
***********************************************
"TAXONOMISTS GETTING EXTINCT AND SPECIES DATA DEFICIENT !!"


Pankaj Kumar Ph.D. (Orchidaceae)
Research Associate
Greater Kailash Sacred Landscape Project
Department of Habitat Ecology
Wildlife Institute of India
Post Box # 18
Dehradun - 248001, India

Vijayasankar

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Mar 1, 2011, 3:02:35 PM3/1/11
to Pankaj Kumar, indiantreepix
Well written, Pankaj. Thanks for sharing your valuable experiences in a simple manner.
This useful episode is going great!!!
Look forward for more such nicely written articles on the subject. Keep it ON!
 
Regards 
 
Vijayasankar Raman
National Center for Natural Products Research
University of Mississippi

Gurcharan Singh

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Mar 1, 2011, 9:44:45 PM3/1/11
to Vijayasankar, Pankaj Kumar, indiantreepix
Very good write up and equally matching photographs. Thanks Pankaj ji. Well said "Photography is an art and that is within you and not in the camera." Perhaps you can give a good interpretation. I find my Sony alpha 100 DSLR (with normal lens and a telephoto lens; my son has alpha 750 which I used in California for photography) giving good results for focusing plant parts and I use extension tubes (have not yet bought a real macro lens) for close ups, but for general profile of plant especially habit I find my Panasonic Lumix (DMC-ZS3, 25 mm wide angle, 12 x, HD movie; Leica  DC VARIO-ELMAR 1:3.3-4.9/4.1-49.2 ASPH.) giving good results. All parts are equally focussed. I also use it for portraits and video recordings. Perhaps you can throw some light on that.



-- 
Dr. Gurcharan Singh
Retired  Associate Professor
SGTB Khalsa College, University of Delhi, Delhi-110007
Res: 932 Anand Kunj, Vikas Puri, New Delhi-110018.
Phone: 011-25518297  Mob: 9810359089
http://people.du.ac.in/~singhg45/ 

Pankaj Kumar

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Mar 2, 2011, 12:42:12 AM3/2/11
to Gurcharan Singh, Vijayasankar, indiantreepix
Sony Alpha A100 Digital
This seems to be one of the first DSLRs launched by Sony and is out of
market now. It gave a good competition to Canon 40D and Nikon D60 etc.
On the net both pros and cons are available for this camera but over
all it is supposed to be good.

CANON 40D - Mg alloy body / 22.2 x 14.8 mm CMOS sensor / EOS
Integrated Cleaning System / lens option highest / LCD 3' / ISO 100 -
3200 / PRICE - highest
NIKON D60 - fibre body / 23.6 x 15.8 mm CCD sensor / Image sensor
cleaning system / lens option more / LCD 2.5' / ISO 100 - 3200 / PRICE
- lowest
SONY A100 - fibre body / 23.6 x 15.8 mm CCD sensor / absent / lens
option less / LCD 2.5' / ISO 100 - 1600 / PRICE - medium

There are many other features to compare with.

If I had to choose a long lasting sturdy body, I would have gone
personally for 40D just because it has a magnesium allow body which is
much more sturdy than fibre body though it has smaller sensor but same
megapixel (thats why it is costlier than other two).

If I had to look for price (fixed budget) then with similar features I
would have gone for Nikon at lowest price.

Why wouldnt I choose Sony, because it has lesser lens option as its
lens mount is not compatible with all. At the same price and similar
options, Nikon is always a better option for me over Sony and
remember, I belong to Nikon fanclub!! :)).

Regards
Pankaj

Pankaj Kumar

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Mar 2, 2011, 12:53:41 AM3/2/11
to Gurcharan Singh, Vijayasankar, indiantreepix
I am sorry I couldnt find specifications of Sony Alpha A750.
For review of other cameras, you may please let me know the price in
which you bought it. It will help me compare it with other models
available at similar price.
There is one more thing...
Once you have bought it, then dont think much about how it is better
from others :)).....
All camera have their good points and bad points and then all users
have their good points and bad points in using a particular camera.
You should always trust your own photographic equipments. If you cant
trust them, you can never take good pics. Technology keeps on
upgrading and any equipment which is best in the world at this moment
may not be the best next month!!

EVERY DOG HAS HIS DAY !!!

Pankaj

Pankaj Oudhia

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Mar 2, 2011, 1:24:56 AM3/2/11
to efloraofindia
Thanks for valuable information.

I purchased Sony DSC-P-150 as first digital camera in Rs. 20,000 many years back. It is 7.2 megapixel camera. Taken over 3 lac pictures and hundreds of videos. Now the company says that additional batteries are not available. Go for new camera. I noted that now the same camera with additional features is available in mere 5000 Rs.

After purchasing the above mentioned camera I visited to Bastar and took only twenty pictures as trial. When I posted the thumbnails through my site I got a buyer who purchased it at the rate of Rs. 2000 per picture (for one time use). The cost of camera recovered immediately with grand party.

I am using many external harddisks of plus 500 GB each to store large sized pictures. The buyers always ask for large sized pictures.

Now I am planning to take new camera and your write up will definitely of great help for me.

I prefer small sized camera not looking as camera because while using big cameras our Healers (as well as herbs) start showing signs of uneasiness. :)

regards

Pankaj Oudhia

Yazdy Palia

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Mar 2, 2011, 1:32:03 AM3/2/11
to Pankaj Oudhia, efloraofindia
Thank you Pankaj, to a novice like me, the information is valuable.
Regards
Yazdy.

satyendra tiwari

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Mar 2, 2011, 1:39:39 AM3/2/11
to indian...@googlegroups.com

Dear Gurucharan ji and all,
I dont remember the model no but one of the Lumix Panasonic shoots in Raw also.
These small cameras are very good for this kind of work and even for Landscape for some reason.
One of my photographer friend who has written two guide books on Madagaskar and two on Borneo always uses wide angle lens for photographing insects and flowers. I am finding it very useful too so please try wide angle lens too for small objects.
I will post few pictures soon.
Thanks.
Satyendra
--
Satyendra K.Tiwari.
Wildlife Photographer, Naturalist, Tour Leader
H.NO 129, P.O.Tala, Distt Umariya.
M.P. India 484-661
Park Entry fee is constantly under revision since last one year. We take no responsibility for any changes in park rules / fees. We will endaevour to let you know as soon as we know of such changes.
To know more about Bandhavgarh visit following links.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/satyendraphotography
http://tigerdiaries.blogspot.com
http://skayscamp.wetpaint.com
SKAY'S CAMP is awarded QUALITY rating by Tour Operator For Tigers (TOFT). http://www.toftigers.org/accommodation/Default.aspx?id=15
Review Skay's Camp on TripAdvisor
00-91-7627-265309 or 09425331209

Pankaj Kumar

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Mar 2, 2011, 1:58:01 AM3/2/11
to satyendra tiwari, indian...@googlegroups.com
Dear Satyendra sir
You are a professiona photographer and for sure more experienced than
most of us. I fully agree with you.

When they take pictures of animals they prefer covering the habitat
too, hence its good that ways if they use the wideangle.
But when we talk about closeup details then macro lens is needed. Most
of the wide angle lens dont go close more than 25cm and at that point
you cant zoom in more, hence it becomes a negative point while
shooting macro. Secondly, in animal photography, you dont want to
disturb the subject it may run/fly away, hence to maintaining a
distance is always a good option.

And as I said before, small cameras also does wonder and I fully agree
with you on this. The four pictures which I added of those, i like
Erythrina crysta-galli the most although it has been taken by a
compact pocket digital camera.

If you wish to minimise the weight then wideangle serves the purpose.

Just adding few more pics. These details, you may not ever get with a
wideangle lens.

Pankaj

Slide2.JPG
Slide1.JPG
Slide5.JPG

Pankaj Oudhia

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Mar 2, 2011, 2:19:49 AM3/2/11
to efloraofindia
Some close-ups from my camera. All pictures are from Ecoport.

regards

Pankaj Oudhia
44270.jpg
50883.jpg
57561.jpg
98851.jpg
105030.jpg
105105.jpg

Neil Soares

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Mar 2, 2011, 2:44:02 AM3/2/11
to efloraofindia, Pankaj Oudhia
Hi Dr. Oudhia,
    Nice photographs !!! In case you are interested they are:
   1.The House Fly [Musca domestica].
   2 & 5. Jewel Bugs [Chrysocoris stolli].
   3.Brown Lynx spider [Oxyopes rufisternum].
   4.Pongamia pinnata seeds.
& 6.Tortoise Shell Beetles [Aspidomorpha milliaris].
                     With regards,
                       Neil Soares


--- On Wed, 3/2/11, Pankaj Oudhia <pankaj...@gmail.com> wrote:

Pankaj Oudhia

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Mar 2, 2011, 2:47:47 AM3/2/11
to efloraofindia
Thanks a lot. Fourth one is Butea monosperma seeds. I am attaching picture of Pongamia seeds.

regards

Pankaj Oudhia
98822.jpg

Neil Soares

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Mar 2, 2011, 2:50:46 AM3/2/11
to efloraofindia, Pankaj Oudhia
Thanks Dr. Oudhia. I stand corrected.
                     Regards,
                       Neil Soares.

Pankaj Oudhia

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Mar 2, 2011, 2:54:21 AM3/2/11
to efloraofindia
2 & 5. Jewel Bugs [Chrysocoris stolli].

It was first identified by FAO experts as Scutellera nobilis through pestnet. I was about to report it on Jatropha curcas as first record. Entomologists from different groups confirmed it.

 Later it was identified as Chrysocoris. It seems as correct identity so far.

Our Healers use it as Traditional medicine.

Thanks.

regards

Pankaj Oudhia

On Wed, Mar 2, 2011 at 1:14 PM, Neil Soares <drneil...@yahoo.com> wrote:

Gurcharan Singh

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Mar 2, 2011, 3:57:47 AM3/2/11
to Pankaj Oudhia, efloraofindia
Perhaps the crux of my query still remains unanswered.

I find my digicam Panasonic Lumix (DMC-ZS3, 25 mm wide angle, 12 x, HD movie; Leica  DC VARIO-ELMAR 1:3.3-4.9/4.1-49.2 ASPH.) giving good results for general habit of plant than my DSLR, whereas DSLR is excellent for close up and photographs of smaller parts. How to achieve good photograph of habit with DSLR so that all parts are in focus?
    Till any such solution I would continue photographs of general habit with Panasonic Digicam and plant parts especially close ups with DSLR. Both are 10.3 megapixels.


-- 
Dr. Gurcharan Singh
Retired  Associate Professor
SGTB Khalsa College, University of Delhi, Delhi-110007
Res: 932 Anand Kunj, Vikas Puri, New Delhi-110018.
Phone: 011-25518297  Mob: 9810359089
http://people.du.ac.in/~singhg45/ 

Pankaj Kumar

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Mar 2, 2011, 4:55:34 AM3/2/11
to Gurcharan Singh, Pankaj Oudhia, efloraofindia
Before that here are few things to understand.
Shutter ranges from number lower to higher, i.e., 1 - 10000, i.e., slower to faster, i.e., shutter opens for more time to less time.
Aperture ranges from lower to higher, i.e., 2.8 - 36 (or higher), i.e., bigger to smaller.
ISO ranges from lower to higher, i.e, 100 - 6400, i.e., lesser sensitivity to higher sensitivity.

Now coming to Dr. Gurcharan's query:
The best way to keep maximum things in focus is by increasing the depth of field. That can be done by reducing the aperture while taking a picture and when you increase the aperture then depth of field decreases. The aperture is represented by f but it is in ratio, i.e., f 2.8 is actually f/2.8 hence it means smaller is the number bigger is the aperture and lesser is the depth of field.
At times, you may not have enough light but still if you have to reduce the aperture then you can increase the time of exposure OR you can increase the sensitivity OR you can provide extra light or use flash.
Attaching some examples to show how shutter works.
Hope this will help. I have kept ISO and SHUTTER stable and changed the aperture. You may notice that the fourth pic is a bit darker. To get a better pic you could either increase the ISO or decrease the shutter.

Regards
Pankaj
Slide1.JPG
Slide2.JPG
Slide3.JPG
Slide4.JPG

Gurcharan Singh

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Mar 2, 2011, 5:20:56 AM3/2/11
to Pankaj Kumar, Pankaj Oudhia, efloraofindia
Dear Tiwari ji and Pankaj ji
Thanks for nice tips. I have a tripod stand, and will perhaps use it. I find when I set dial to Aperture mode and increase number (smaller size of aperture) the exposure time automatically increases to degree that stand would be necessary. Thanks Pankaj ji for starting this new tutorial which should help many members.



-- 
Dr. Gurcharan Singh
Retired  Associate Professor
SGTB Khalsa College, University of Delhi, Delhi-110007
Res: 932 Anand Kunj, Vikas Puri, New Delhi-110018.
Phone: 011-25518297  Mob: 9810359089
http://people.du.ac.in/~singhg45/ 

satyendra tiwari

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Mar 2, 2011, 5:55:32 AM3/2/11
to indian...@googlegroups.com
Dear All,
i put D2X camera body on tripod with shutter release cable. I used Nikon 105 MM F 2.8 mACRO LENS and Nikon 18-55 mm lens. Photos shot on F5.6 TO f40 DIFFERENT apperture setting and shutter speed.
camera body was set on apperture mode. 
readings are put with every photo F36 SHUTTER SPEED 60 FOCAL LENGTH 55 ISO 200 (36 60 55 200)
please see and make your own decision about the sharpness / focus.
thanks.
satyendra  

eflora 36 60 55 200_DSC5353.jpg
eflora 40 60 105 200_DSC5359.jpg
eflora 5.6 2500 105 200_DSC5363.jpg
eflora 36 40 55 200_DSC5371.jpg
eflora 3.5 6000 105 200_DSC5365.jpg

Pankaj Kumar

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Mar 2, 2011, 7:16:07 AM3/2/11
to satyendra tiwari, indian...@googlegroups.com
Nice and thanks for sharing.
Its good if you have to carry less weight while trekking or travelling. So one multipurpose lens will always be good, but to have good pictures, there are specific lenses. Then you also wish not to carry a tripod which is more heavier than the lens.
As I say most of the time, multiple pics from multiple angle always help even for a plant collected by non botanist.
Here are few Euphorbia I took after seeing Satyendra sir's pictures.
All pictures were taken using inbuilt flash except for the last one for which ring flash was used. Fourth pic was taken using wide angle at around 60mm.
Last two pics were taken using macro at minimum distance possible.
All pictures have been put on powerpoint and slides are being prepared hence it has lost the original resolution but all have been kept at same resolution to compare. 
Regards
Pankaj
Slide5.JPG
Slide6.JPG
Slide7.JPG
Slide8.JPG
Slide9.JPG
Slide10.JPG

mani nair

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Mar 2, 2011, 8:13:59 AM3/2/11
to Pankaj Kumar, satyendra tiwari, indian...@googlegroups.com
Pankaj ji, very valuable information on camera.
Thanks for sharing,
Regards,
Mani.
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