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Digital cameras you are considering for upcoming safari???

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May 12th, 2005, 05:21 AM
  #201
 
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Rocco - did you format the card when you first put it in?

After you download the images off of a CF card and you put it back in your camera to use again you should format it. Every time.

You should be able to get good images even with OS (stabilization) off. Many many photographers take excellent images without using lenses with this feature.

I'm sorry you're having a hard time getting started. It is hard in the beginning but should get easier. One of the lenses I bought from Allen's had a problem. I called him and what he did was sell me another new lens and shipped it that day. I shipped the one I had back to him and he refunded the money once he received it. He did not suggest that I would have to wait on the lens being repaired. He just took it back and I got a different one. I think your camera is too new to be repaired and you should get a replacement. But I'm not the seller (or Canon) so who knows.

Good luck! I believe I gave you my number so if you have any questions, just call me.
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May 12th, 2005, 05:41 AM
  #202
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Sundowner,

I don't have the first clue about formating the flash card and now I am on my second card without having done this. Is there a very brief instruction you may provide?

Thanks.
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May 12th, 2005, 06:21 AM
  #203
 
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I have the 300D. It states in the manual that you need to format the CF card before use. Check your 20D manual for details, it's pretty straightforward. It also covers changing lenses!
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May 12th, 2005, 06:56 AM
  #204
 
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rocco- put the card in the slot and shut the door. Then use the menu button and scroll thru the options until you get to the one that says "format". Push the button and it will reformat the card. That means the card is cleared of all images and is set up to use in your camera. You will actually watch it do this so you will know it is happening. (The button you push is the one that I believe says "set")

I am 99% sure that I cannot take a card out of my camera and install it in a different camera and have it work. It won't. It has to be formatted to work in your camera.
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May 12th, 2005, 06:56 AM
  #205
 
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Rocco
Come on!
Not to belabour a point but, didn't we already talk about how the equipment you've spent so much money on is going to have diddly squat impact on the quality of your photography if you can't even invest the time to read the basics in the manual. Not to mention that this is complex - it has a computer at it's core and you know how important it is to treat computers in the way that they have been programmed to expect.
READ THE MANUAL!
In the meantime, there are a number of software applications that are aimed at recovering data from problem CF cards. You can usually find them on the internet by searching on CF or Compact Flash Data Recovery.
Good luck!
Oh and PS READ THE MANUAL!
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May 12th, 2005, 07:41 AM
  #206
 
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http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...4&tid=34611969
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May 12th, 2005, 07:44 AM
  #207
 
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We purchased the same camera you have and it is intimidating to me. It has a lot of features but the manual is not that easy for me to follow. We are taking a class -- just had the second one -- and it is helpful.

Mike found a book -- Magic Lantern Guide Canan 20D by Rob Sheppard -- which I think is easier to understand than the manual. For one the pictures are larger and easier to follow. He also explains a lot of things as he goes.

It is easy to just want to get started and take pictures but digital is very different from film and I think you do need to read the manual but that this book might also be helpful.
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May 12th, 2005, 07:54 AM
  #208
 
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MPKP
Good to hear you're getting on with the new camera having taken some classes and found a user guide that works for you.
Often the official manuals aren't the easiest things to plough through but it's worth either persevering or, as you've done, finding alternatives ways of learning.
What IS imperative is investing some time in learning somehow as without it, it's hard to get much out of the equipment.

When I advised Rocco in the other thread to learn some basics about the camera I offered a few examples of things that would be good to learn:

I'd advise you to learn about and understand how to set aperture in order to control depth of field; how to lock the focus point on a subject and then recompose the image so that the subject is no longer centred but still the point of focus; how to read the aperture and shutter speed that the camera is setting for a given scene, decide whether these are suitable - if the shutter speed is too slow to hand hold, for example, because the light is low, how to change the ISO to a faster speed; how to get the camera to show you on the LCD by flashing in black that you have overexposed and blown out details in the highlight areas of the image (so that you can then use exposure compensation to underexpose when retaking the shot)...

Just a few off the top of my head that will really help you to get the most out of the several thousand you have spent.


Before even worrying about that, it's important to learn the basics of operating the camera itself, HOW to change/ reformat the card, how to get to the menus, how to change basic settings such as ISO, shooting mode etc.

BEST of luck with this... I appreciate it's not easy learning how to use SLRs when one's coming from a non-SLR background and especially not easy going straight to a digital SLR when one has to also learn how to handle digital files, media and so on on top of how to use the camera itself.



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May 12th, 2005, 08:47 AM
  #209
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Okay, I found my instructions and I will be studying, studying, studying. I had misplaced my instructions and then upon seeing instructions in Spanish, I thought that these were the only instructions included, but then I came across my English instructions last night.

I will be attending a couple classes at a local camera store this weekend, and then do a one day workshop in Dana Point next week. Along with reading my instructions this should go a long way. Oh, how I long for the days that I could just pay someone to do my homework. j/k
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May 12th, 2005, 09:11 AM
  #210
 
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Rocco glad to hear you are following Kaveys advice because it is excellent advice! I think Kavey & I both went from using a regular SLR onto dig so we already had the SLR basics but even saying that the first thing I did when I got my 20D was sit down on the sofa with camera on lap and instructions in hand and read my way through the book. It really did help. Good luck and have lots of fun with these toys!

J
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May 12th, 2005, 09:15 AM
  #211
 
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Rocco
I'm so glad to hear you're going to invest some time in this. I'm not trying to nag - I just want you to achieve the best you can with your next set of safari photos as I know it's something that's important to you!
I am not someone who reads every page of my manuals by a long shot but then I'm in the position of being able to work most of it out without because of previous experience/ knowledge.
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May 12th, 2005, 11:14 AM
  #212
 
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Rocco -- to answer one of your earlier questions, I received the paperwork for my extended warranty at the same time I received the camera I ordered.

I went for the Rebel XT, in silver (couldn't justify paying $80 more for black), from Willoughbys for $829 (body only), with the $99 three year extended warranty. I ordered the Canon 17-85 IS lens from them as well, but it was backordered, so I called B&H yesterday and ordered the lens from them.

I'm glad I did the majority of my ordering on-line, because even just buying the lens over the phone I was subjected to a really hard sell from the salesperson. I was able to resist most of what he was pushing, but I finally crumbled and agreed to buy the $25 7-year warranty, which I'm sure was a waste of money.

Anyway, thanks to you and everyone for all the information on this thread. I am also moving from a point and shoot to a SLR, and although I know at the beginning I may be disappointed from the soft, under/over exposed pictures I get from my XT, I have been spending a lot of time (don't tell my boss!) in the forums over at dpreview.com learning what terms like "stopping down the lens" mean, about the holy triumverate of aperture, shutter speed and ISO, and about how important post-processing with programs like Photoshop can be, especially using something called the "unsharp mask" process to sharpen photos up. That was one thing I thought you could try after I saw your photos from the zoo. I bet you could sharpen them up with Photoshop and they'd be spectacular.
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May 12th, 2005, 12:01 PM
  #213
 
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zpenci - if you think the Canon manual is difficult, wait until you try Photoshop. I've never felt more helpless than when I was trying to figure that stuff out.

Photoshop Elements software came free with my Canon cameras and it's a great tool but it is difficult for me to learn. I took a bird photography workshop a month or so ago and learned a couple of things to do in PS to enhance the photos greatly. (I also learned more about taking the photo so they won't need as much work with PS!)

What I learned is very simple but if you don't know to do it, it doesn't matter how simple it is! If you want, email me at [email protected] and I can tell you what they are. I only check that mail maybe once a month so tell me here if you send me an email.
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May 12th, 2005, 12:45 PM
  #214
 
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Absolutely! I just sent you an email there.
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May 12th, 2005, 01:10 PM
  #215
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I did it, I did it, I did it...I formatted my first CF Card with the help of Ritz Camera. Not only that, but I was able to get my 1 Gig CF card working again, and luckily I had downloaded all 200 images taken onto my computer before I lost the images. So, with the reformatting, everything was erased, but it didn't matter since I already had them.

I am not too good with the instructions yet, but I am not too shy to ask 20 questions and learn from others.
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May 15th, 2005, 08:51 AM
  #216
 
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If the question I pose has been addressed in one of the previous 216 posts, I apologize for my lack of speed reading skills and for asking it again.

I was thinking the new 10x and 12x optical zoom digital cameras would be a great way to do away with the bulk and inconvenience of lens changing.

When I asked my local camera stores about this, they said the quality of the
digital zoom cameras is nowhere near the quality of the Digital SLRs.

I currently have a Minolta non-digital SLR for taking typical safari shots and other travel photos, as well as family shots.

What do you think? Thanks.
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May 15th, 2005, 12:35 PM
  #217
 
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I am seriously considering buying the new Canon digital rebel xt. Now I would like to know how many pictures would fit on a 512 compact flash card taken at the highest JPEG setting. For a 3 week trip I wonder if I would need a portable storage device for downloading my pictures rather that getting several CF cards.
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May 15th, 2005, 01:14 PM
  #218
africa_lover
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this would be 512/4 = 128 pictures.
i am so excited, my husband just bought the digital rebel XT at B&H store in NY. Cannot wait until he gets home ! (that's Belgium, Europe).

SANDI,
he did have to pay tax as they didn't want to send the empty box to a friends address in New Jersey .
 
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May 15th, 2005, 05:04 PM
  #219
sandi
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africa_lover -

Glad to hear that your husband was successful. As to the tax - hey, all you can do is try - sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. Enjoy your new purchase.
 
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May 16th, 2005, 09:56 AM
  #220
 
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Atravelynn

Keep in mind that the salesperson at the camera store may be more interested in selling you a camera than helping you meet your needs.

I'd suggest you first determine how much money you're willing to spend and then go from there. SLR-wise, I recently purchased the Canon Digital Rebel (300D). With the release of the new Digital Rebel XT (350D) I got a great price on the "old" model - I'm new to SLR so I didn't need the biggest, best, newest camera. Now I have to buy a telephoto or zoom lens. It all adds up in the end.

I considered a non-SLR with a 10x zoom, but I've always wanted to try my hand at photography with some scope for creativity, so I went SLR. That said, I'm not someone who will 'not see the forest for the trees'. Taking pictures is definitely secondary to experiencing the moment - I'm talking safari here.

B&H photo (I'm in Canada, but I'll quote US sites and prices for you) has a 300D (with kit lens) for $750, while it has a Nikon coolpix 8800 (10x zoom, with 1GB memory card) for $785. Close at first, but you have to add a telephoto/zoom lens and memory for the SLR, which will add an additional $420 for a 75-300 IS USM lens and $100 for a 1GB memory card.

I hope this helps a little.

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