Coaster pictures with new EOS 300D digital reb

Thursday, October 2, 2003 4:30 AM
I recently picked up a new Canon EOS 300D "Digital Rebel", the first digital SLR to drop below the $1,000 price barrier. I own several digital cameras, and this one is hands down the best one for taking coaster pictures.

It focuses quickly, takes pictures when you want to take them, and has a four-shot buffer so you can take up to
four pictures in rapid succession without waiting for the camera to finish writing to the memory card. This camera shoots circles around the G3, which is a pretty awesome camera in its own right.

For your viewing pleasure I have posted three unretouched full-size coaster pictures on my Pbase gallery:
http://www.pbase.com/knappk/eos_300d_unretouched_samples

These were taken at Six Flags Elitch Gardens. Sorry, no Lakeside pictures, they closed for the season after Labor Day... *sob*

Note that there are differences in transitioning to a digital SLR. Here's a few obvious ones:

--the 300D pictures do not have the same 4:3 ratio that all my other cameras had; the pictures are 3:2 (i.e., they are wider).

--because of the SLR design, it is possible for dust and similar debris to get on the actual imaging sensor, and cause shadows on your images. This has already happened to me; I used a rubber bulb to blow the dust off the sensor (there's a special "sensor clean" mode that opens the shutter for this purpose), and now I am very careful where
and how often I swap lenses.

--6 megapixel images require a lot more storage space; most of my pictures are under 3 megabytes in size (highest-resolution JPEG), but some are over 4 megabytes.

--Kevin

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Thursday, October 2, 2003 5:04 AM
No surprise that it takes high quality photos, as it's basically a feature-crippled 10D (which is what I have, as does Walt from Virtual Midway). I think the 300D is a great camera but I don't think I could deal with the missing features (small buffer, no flash comp, slower drive, no 2nd curtain sync, etc.). Of course, with the money you save, you could always buy a nice "L" lens. :)

The camera is important though from the standpoint that it'll put digital SLR's in the hands of normal people who, if they take the damn thing out of full-auto, will learn a thing or two about real photography skills.

35mm film cameras are also 3:2 (36mm x 24mm), so it's not different from a normal film SLR. Not only should you be careful while changing lenses for the sake of the sensor, but also for the shutter. Dirt and dust on it can be even more disasterous.

You should consider shooting in RAW mode, because you have more flexibility in manipulating the raw data from sensor before it becomes "fixed" and some detail and dynamic range is thrown away. The good news is that the new version of Photoshop natively supports RAW. Until I get that, I use BreezeBrowser (www.breezesys.com) for processing them. I realize that the resulting files are large, but if you're buying a $1,000 camera you can afford to buy a $200, 1 GB flash card.

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Jeff - Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog
Blogs, photo albums - CampusFish
What time does the water show start?
*** This post was edited by Jeff 10/2/2003 9:06:02 AM ***

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Thursday, October 2, 2003 5:43 AM
I looked at the D60 and then the 10D when it replaced it, I've always been impressed with them, but they've always been just a bit out of my price range (especially since I had the choice of a video camera or one of these babies - as I already have two digital cameras and two quality film SLR cameras). When the 300D was announced a few weeks back, I got excited; because there's finally something I can afford which doesn't really sacrifice anything that matters to me. I'm looking at trading up to this baby.

As someone that's been using almost only compact digital cams for the past three or four years, and came from the SLR film world, I'm dying to get my hands on some *real* cameras again.

I know my second Kodak had the 3:2 ratio, but all my other past digital cameras were 4:3. It's not an issue to me, but I must admit I do prefer 4:3 for seemingly now reason.

Jeff, what sort of average file size are you talking about for the RAW images? How many shots do you normally fit on the 1GB? I currently have 512MB, and I don't really want to buy any more unless we're talking low figures (I'd rather let that money go towards some decent lenses).

Thanks for the shots, Kevin. It's good to know what I'm looking at thinking about getting myself into. :)
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Total Thrills Amusement Guide
Australia's Premier Source for Thrills!

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Thursday, October 2, 2003 5:59 AM
Shooting RAW I think I get between 120 and 140 frames per card (I have a microdrive and a CF card). I've filled them doing portrait photography but never in the field.

The biggest reason to shoot this way, which I guess I should've mentioned, is that you don't have to live with the camera's settings for white balance, sharpness, etc., if the camera got it wrong. Believe it or not, it does happen from time to time, especially in weird lighting conditions.

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Jeff - Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog
Blogs, photo albums - CampusFish
What time does the water show start?

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Thursday, October 2, 2003 6:17 AM
You'll get 55-60 RAW images on a 512mb CF.

I bought a digital wallet. It costs less than $250 for 20GB of storage that fits nicely into my camera bag. I fill my 512mb card and then dump it on the hard drive in about 4 minutes. It's worked out well for me, especially at the park. If I buy another CF card, even a 256mb, I can shoot with one, while the other dumps.

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Walt Schmidt - Virtual Midway

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Thursday, October 2, 2003 7:12 AM
I just bought a G3 to replace a non-working G1 and I've been debating between the 10D and 300D myself for a couple of weeks now. I'll probably get the 10D next summer because I like the features that aren't on the 300D.

As for Breezebrowser, I liked it to see the RAW files, but I hated the interface to switch between pictures. Use irfanview instead if you can. I used older versions that didn't support the Raw format but the new update works beautifully and converts and resizes fine. It's also completely free, but doesn't have the histogram feature of Breezebrowser. Check it out at http://www.irfanview.com and see if it isn't at least a great companion for Breezebrowser for you.

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Thursday, October 2, 2003 8:10 AM
Even without the RAW support (which I hope will be added in the next version), Photoshop Album is pretty sweet.

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Walt Schmidt - Virtual Midway

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Thursday, October 2, 2003 9:05 AM
Excellent pictures! I'm drooling.

Now all you need is a dry pigment process printer and you'll be set. There are great printers out there now, but if you get the slightest bit of moisture on the prints, they're through.

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"I go out at 3 o' clock for a quart of milk and come home to my son treating his body like an amusement park!" - Estelle Costanza

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Thursday, October 2, 2003 9:33 AM
I noticed Kodak in this topic. I am wondering do they have a digital camera or are they still using 35mm film? Also can we expect to see memory stick and digital cameras totally eliminate the 35mm film cameras? I ask this because Kodak always seems to be going down and not up.

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Gemini 100

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Thursday, October 2, 2003 9:37 AM
Printers still suck and the images fade over time through any process. Old-fashioned photographic printing (a la Ofoto, Shutterfly, or whatever) is still much better.

Kodak is refocusing on digital imaging and they certainly realize that film has a finite life ahead of it. Heck, they own Ofoto, which I use almost exclusively for prints. I've done up to 20x30 and get great results.

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Jeff - Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog
Blogs, photo albums - CampusFish
What time does the water show start?

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Thursday, October 2, 2003 10:25 AM
Jeff:

I've been using ImageStation as my online album. There are however a few things that I would change in their setup. I was just curious what you thought of Ofoto overall.
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http://www.imagestation.com/member/neuski

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Thursday, October 2, 2003 10:30 AM
Ofoto, if you're a Windows user, has easily one of the best upload controls I've ever seen. It really is quite good. Album management is pretty straight forward, as is ordering prints. I also like how you can make your images available for purchase to other people. I have tons of albums for my volleyball kids where they buy prints.

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Jeff - Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog
Blogs, photo albums - CampusFish
What time does the water show start?

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Thursday, October 2, 2003 11:11 AM
For some reason ImageStation reverses the order of my pictures. It can be a pain when you have a huge album, from a day at the park, and you have to individually change each images number. The upload process can be screwy as well. Stupid ImageStation...

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http://www.imagestation.com/member/neuski

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Thursday, October 2, 2003 11:17 AM
I'll second the "I like OPhoto" comment. Actually, I believe I'm the one who turned Jeff onto them ;)


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--Greg, aka Oat Boy
My page
"The safety word is 'banana'." -- Family Guy

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