Taking the Plunge
I am one month into my Digital Single Lens Reflex camera experience and coming from a point and shoot background I can tell you that there are a lot of surprises both good and not so good. Just taking a Dslr out of the box and cracking the cover on the manual is a bit daunting. This "big boy" camera seemed an overly complicated tool destined to achieve a relatively similar final result for three times the money. It's like the old point and shoot is a jack of all trades, agile and efficient. In good light I did not see a whole lot of difference in Image quality from my ancient Fz20 and my new Canon T2i. The colors were not as saturated straight out of the camera and it was, after all, still ME shooting the pictures so the GREAT improvement I anticipated was not immediate.
The concept that began to help me was understanding this machine to be a refined light gathering tool. It needs to be dialed into a particular task with a particular lens to take a certain kind of picture. With that knowledge comes the realization another $1000 worth of lenses are in your future to take nearly the same pictures you were already taking faster with a fixed lens on your $350 P&S!
Next comes RAW, the creme de la creme of picture files. No longer do your little Jpegs pop up in good old Picasa for you to fiddle with. Your assignment is to delve into the bowels of your images deciding on the sharpness, saturation, color tone, highlights, and shadows of every single picture. About this time your 'significant other' begins to get a little annoyed with you and your obsessive compulsive behaviour related to the silent hours wrestling a decent picture out of this Dslr thing that might resolve your growing buyers remorse.
Then it happens. The aperture, Iso, shutter speed, focus and subject come together in an alchemy of fortunate accidents and you take your best picture ever. You stare at it for hours transfixed in a happy glow peeping at your beautiful pixels and you are hopelessly hooked.
Said the boy(Dslr user) shivering in the ice cold river, "Come on in the water's fine!"
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