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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EOS Digital Cameras
Thread started 28 Nov 2012 (Wednesday) 09:05
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Old Digital Rebel 300D

 
Madwrench
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Nov 28, 2012 15:39 as a reply to post 15300724 |  #16

To me, there is a huge difference between the old 300D and any of the newer xxxD bodies. You would, of course, need some better glass to go along with it. There are some really good deals on used stuff out there, bodies and glass both.

I still have my 300D, along with it's original kit lens, which I now use for shooting time lapse. It's often out of sight for hours. If it gets stolen, destroyed, whatever, I'm not out much (my intervalometer is cheapo too!), and the individual image quality doesn't have to be top shelf for t/lapse. Works just fine for that.

I still have a 75-300, too - but one of these days I'll remember to take it along when I go do some target practice, and we'll see how a .223 round goes through it lengthwise.




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eiram21
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Nov 28, 2012 21:20 |  #17

amfoto1 wrote in post #15300670 (external link)
Lenses also make a big, big difference. Most Canon's USM lenses are near the top of the game for lens focus speed. Larger aperture lenses that deliver more light for the AF system to work with also tend to help. (There are some exceptions, such as macro lenses and portrait specific lenses, that just aren't designed for speed.)

The third factor in the autofocus performance equation is the user. Learning to use the system well and set up the camera as needed for different purposes is invaluable. For action shots, limit the camera to use only the center AF point, set it to AI Servo and try Back Button Focusing.

While the 300D is a fairly old model now, those 6MP camera make very nice images, up to about ISO 800, and are pretty capable. Depending upon what lenses you have to work with, you might see the most benefit by putting some money into lenses, instead of a new camera. 300D was the first camera that could use EF-S lenses, so there are no limitations and you can choose among all the available Canon lenses, plus a lot of third party offerings. If you have some decent lenses already, you might be better served by upgrading the camera. Any of the current Rebel series would be a real step up, the T4i has some advantages with a better AF system than any previous Rebel/xxxD model. In fact, it's a similar AF system to that used in 40D, 50D or 60D, all of which also would be a very nice upgrade, though a bit larger, heavier. If you move up to one of the xxD models, you'll get considerably higher resolution (10MP with 40D, 15MP with 50d, 18MP with 60D or any of the current Rebel/xxxD except for the most entry-level T3/1100D which is 12MP.)

The later xxD and Rebel models are likely easier on batteries than your 300D/Digital Rebel. My 10D (about the same age as your camera) didn't get as many shots per charge as later cameras. 40D and 50D use the same BP511/511A as your camera, but get more shots per charge out of them... 60D uses a newer LP-E6 that's good for about 40-50% more shots per charge on average. All these models also include self-cleaning sensors (current Rebel series do, too... and it works pretty well a lot of the time). The xxD cameras allow you to swap out the focus screens for a couple different types, while the Rebel-series don't. Also, the xxD camera have a true pentaprism that makes the viewfinder larger and brighter than the penta-mirror based viewfinders in the Rebel series.

40D and 50D use the same type of memory card as your 300D: Compact Flash. The 60D and all the current Rebel series cameras use smaller, SD/SDHC memory cards. You will probably want to buy new memory cards regardless, since the newer, higher resolution cameras generate much bigger image file. Compact Flash are still a little faster than SDHC, but the smaller cards are catching up and coming close.

If you go with a new camera now, I'd suggest you keep it as affordable as possible, to have some budget remaining to put toward lenses. Depending upon what you have now, lenses will likely do more for your images, than the camera used behind them.

It sounds as if you are wanting to expand your skills... I'd suggest setting aside $17 of your budget for a copy of the book "Understanding Exposure" by Bryan Peterson (external link). It's very helpful, highly recommended!

EDIT: I see you have added some info about the lenses you have. Those are three of the cheapest Canon lenses has offered. None of them have faster and more accurate (and quieter) USM focusing. The zooms are f3.5 at best and f5.6 aperture at the other extreme... pretty slow. The 18-55 is decent optically (if it's the later, IS version... not if it's the early, non-IS version). The 50/1.8 II is also decent optically, but suffers from slow, noisy, erratic autofocus and low build quality. As a faster f1.8 lens, it helps AF a bit, but still isn't as fast or accurate focusing as a USM lens would be. The 75-300 is thought by many to be one of Canon's least desireable lenses.

You can use all those lenses with a newer camera and might see some improvements in autofocus and image quality, but the lenses might still hold you back pretty dramatically.

You can get "tack sharp" photos with the camera you have now... if it were used with better lenses.

All the following were taken with various lenses on my old 10D... which uses exactly the same image sensor and processor as the 300D/Digital Rebel... :

Canon EF 50mm f1.4 lens
QUOTED IMAGE

Canon EF 50mm f1.4 lens
QUOTED IMAGE

Canon EF 500mm f4 IS lens with Canon EF 1.4X II teleconverter
QUOTED IMAGE

Canon EF 100mm f2.8 USM Macro
QUOTED IMAGE

Canon EF 100mm f2.8 USM Macro


Canon EF 70-200/2.8 IS


Canon EF 100mm f2.8 USM Macro

Those are beautiful images, Alan! Thanks for all of the information. I've made a note of the lens you recommended. The zoom lens on the 6th photo is a bit out of my price range - can you recommend a decent zoom for a beginner using the 300D?

Marie


Marie
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Gear: Canon 60D with kit lens, Canon 60mm Macro, Canon 50 mm/1.8

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BigAl007
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Nov 28, 2012 22:06 |  #18

Just a couple of things to note from Alans Myers post. The 300D only allows the use of AI Servo focus in the rather useless "Sport" exposure mode. In any of the P Av Tv or M exposure modes you are limited to using AI Focus. This is OK for staionary objects, as it then works like one shot mode, but it is not very goodat working out if the subject starts to move. Normally it is recommended to avoid using it, but you don't really have that choice on the 300D.

Secondly there is no option for using Back Button Focus on the 300D either. I only added a 20D to my 300D this last spring and AI Servo with BBF is brilliant for moving subjects, or locking focus on a tripod.

There is one suggestion I would make. If you can still find it there is a hack that works to allow the 10D firmware to work on the 300D, as the two cameras use the same electronics inside different cases. The only functions from the custom menue that do not work are the settings that allow BBF, and flash rear curtain sync. Of interest to you is the mirror lock up function that would be useful when shooting food. I have used my 300D for a lot of product photography and it really helps with removing any vibration, especially in conjunction with a remote cable relase.

The 300D coupled with good glass is really still very capable, I'm posting this from my phone, but I will try to post some shots from my 300D with a rented 100-400mm L lens when I get on the computer, as well as some from the kit 18-55.

Alan


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Davinor
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Nov 29, 2012 02:00 |  #19

A quick check through the archive uncovered the undutchables hack for the 300D, i ran it for 6 years with no problems. pm me with your email address if you want it

David


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600D with Sigma 17-70 f2.8-4 DC OS HSM,
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Sigma EF500 DG Super and some other bit and pieces

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eiram21
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Nov 29, 2012 08:59 |  #20

BigAl007 wrote in post #15302562external link
The 300D coupled with good glass is really still very capable, I'm posting this from my phone, but I will try to post some shots from my 300D with a rented 100-400mm L lens when I get on the computer, as well as some from the kit 18-55.

Alan

I'd love to hear about some more suggestions for lens that are under $500 (something that would replace the lens that came with the camera?

Would love to see the differences you speak about above (ie, rented lens photos vs photos with "free" lens


Marie
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Gear: Canon 60D with kit lens, Canon 60mm Macro, Canon 50 mm/1.8

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eiram21
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Nov 29, 2012 09:00 |  #21

Davinor wrote in post #15303092external link
A quick check through the archive uncovered the undutchables hack for the 300D, i ran it for 6 years with no problems. pm me with your email address if you want it

David

Thanks, David. Will do. Is it difficult to install? I'm a total noob when it comes to this stuff...


Marie
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gonzogolf
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Nov 29, 2012 09:58 |  #22

eiram21 wrote in post #15303760external link
I'd love to hear about some more suggestions for lens that are under $500 (something that would replace the lens that came with the camera?

Would love to see the differences you speak about above (ie, rented lens photos vs photos with "free" lens

The new IS version of the kit lens, the 55-250, and the 50 1.8 are all bargain lenses and you could probably get all 3 for under $500 and have some change leftover if you arent afraid to dabble in the used market.




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BigAl007
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Repps cum Bastwick, Gt Yarmouth, Norfolk, UK.
Nov 29, 2012 11:44 |  #23

Having a bit of a problem posting as having just moved home the external drive I need is still packed in a box. First picture taken by my daughter. Manual focus as there are some AF problems with the camera using the USM version of the MkI 18-55. The Spitfire picture I took using the 300D after issues with my "new" 20D and a memory card. Again MF but with the Canon 100-400 L IS. Both images shot RAW and processed in LR4.1.

Alan

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eiram21
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Nov 29, 2012 12:27 |  #24

gonzogolf wrote in post #15303987external link
The new IS version of the kit lens, the 55-250, and the 50 1.8 are all bargain lenses and you could probably get all 3 for under $500 and have some change leftover if you arent afraid to dabble in the used market.

Thanks! I do already own the 50 mm 1.8 - I'll look into the others.


Marie
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eiram21
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Nov 29, 2012 12:28 |  #25

BigAl007 wrote in post #15304361external link
Having a bit of a problem posting as having just moved home the external drive I need is still packed in a box. First picture taken by my daughter. Manual focus as there are some AF problems with the camera using the USM version of the MkI 18-55. The Spitfire picture I took using the 300D after issues with my "new" 20D and a memory card. Again MF but with the Canon 100-400 L IS. Both images shot RAW and processed in LR4.1.

Alan

Those are great shots - I especially love the second shot - wow! What technique? Is that panning?


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Copidosoma
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Edmonton AB, Canada
Nov 29, 2012 12:38 as a reply to eiram21's post |  #26

I actually upgraded from my 300D to a 7D a few years ago.

They are different in almost every way.

Here is a short list of 7D improvements over the 300d

Big bright viewfinder
LCD focus screen
fast, accurate, reliable autofocus
AI autofocus without hacking the camera
AF selections that give you many more options
OK, AF is just totally upgraded in almost every way.

Much more useable high iso images.
Noise gets bad on a 300D at iso400 and up, the 7D gives you useable images vastly higher than that.

Resolution, no comparison really.
You can make pretty big prints with the 300D before they start to fall apart but the 7D gies you alot more flexibility.

Build
I tried to wreck my 300D by keeping it in a backpack most of the time. It performed well and never failed. However the 7D is built more robustly. It is bigger and feels much more solid in your hand.

Automatic sensor cleaning.
My 300D was a PITA with dust and dirt on the sensor. Having the ultrasonic cleaning built in vastly reduces dust spots.

External flash control.
You can remotely trigger an external flash with the onboard flash in the 7D. Nice to have if you don't have sync cords.

I'm sure there are big things I'm missing.

The latest rebels and the 60D have many of these features as well (same sensor, smaller viewfinder though). Upgrade to any of them and you are likely to be pretty happy.

I am one of those who doesn't upgrade often. Certainly not keeping up to the latest release. But the 300D, as nice and capable as it is, is pretty dated. You can get vastly more camera for very little these days.


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BigAl007
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Nov 29, 2012 15:49 |  #27

Yes it is a panning shot. It also helped that I was positioned at the right place to catch them as they were lifting off and retacting the undercart. That comes with experiance, but I have been shooting airshows since about the age of ten, so nearly 40 years now. Also Duxford which was one of the fighter stations used in during the Battle of Britian in 1940 is now a major museum and has always been within a couple of hours drive of home for me.

This was the next shot in the burst.

Alan

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eiram21
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Nov 29, 2012 19:03 |  #28

BigAl007 wrote in post #15305270external link
Yes it is a panning shot. It also helped that I was positioned at the right place to catch them as they were lifting off and retacting the undercart. That comes with experiance, but I have been shooting airshows since about the age of ten, so nearly 40 years now. Also Duxford which was one of the fighter stations used in during the Battle of Britian in 1940 is now a major museum and has always been within a couple of hours drive of home for me.

This was the next shot in the burst.

Alan

Beautiful! I'd probably trip over something and embarrass myself if I tried that..lol


Marie
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Gear: Canon 60D with kit lens, Canon 60mm Macro, Canon 50 mm/1.8

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eiram21
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Nov 29, 2012 19:06 |  #29

Copidosoma wrote in post #15304559external link
I actually upgraded from my 300D to a 7D a few years ago.

They are different in almost every way.

Here is a short list of 7D improvements over the 300d

Big bright viewfinder
LCD focus screen
fast, accurate, reliable autofocus
AI autofocus without hacking the camera
AF selections that give you many more options
OK, AF is just totally upgraded in almost every way.

..............

Thanks so much for that comprehensive comparison. I saw the 7D and it looks like an awesome camera. I must admit, I spilled chocolate milk on the 300D years ago, and I'm not sure what effects that caused. I looked into having the camera cleaned but I think the cleaning costs more than the camera is worth at this stage!


Marie
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Gear: Canon 60D with kit lens, Canon 60mm Macro, Canon 50 mm/1.8

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BigAl007
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Nov 30, 2012 03:16 |  #30

Marie like all things you need to learn the techniques. At least with panning you are standing still. The other trick I learnt early on for that sort of work is that focal length is everything. For example if you can add a bit more length you can stand further back. At an airshow for example I prefere to stand back away from the crowd line where you have a bit more space. This then can give you a better angle too.

It is this stopping and thinking about what you are going to do first that makes the difference between so so and great pictures. Good quality lenses, not necessarliy L models, and not always Canon either help. For indoor shooting for example good light is important. If you are doing lots of studio type work then investing in some lights will probably make more difference to your work than any other items you could spend your money on. Most of the products I have had to photograph are a bit bigger than a simple plate of food. For items around the size of a table setting up to full length people size then either one of the sets of studio monoblock lighting sets from ebay or using Yonguo type flashguns on stands will be money well spent. If you are only going to be photographing smaller items then the Younguo type flashes or continuos lighting will be the better choice.

Alan


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Old Digital Rebel 300D
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