Good macro camera for under 400$?

Discussion in 'Aquarium Photography' started by needmorecowbell, Jun 21, 2012.

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  1. needmorecowbell

    needmorecowbell Torch Coral

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    I'd like to buy a camera in the next few months that will take good close up macro photos of corals. I can't do a dslr, just too pricey. I was thinking under 400$ if it's possible, I know these things are expensive.. I also like taking videos so if there is a camera with that also it would be nice. I have looked at psteelebs camera, from reefcentral, the Sony xr250 or something. It looks like exactly what I want but I'd like some other opinions, thanks :D
     
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  3. exactlyobp

    exactlyobp Giant Squid

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    You want all these in one camera? Under $400??
    -great macro capability
    -decent movie function
    Let me know if you find any.

    Now,
    A used Nikon D40 can be found around $200
    A used Tamron 90mm Macro lens can be found $350 (you might need some luck, but it's an awesome lens)
    You cant have the movie function with this combo, yet you wont need anything else when it comes to aquarium photos.

    My .02
     
  4. needmorecowbell

    needmorecowbell Torch Coral

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    Thanks, I've been reading more about the cameras and im going to do dslr.. Just too many pros to pass up. Craigslist has a bunch of good offers on a body, no lens yet.. My tank is not very big, could I get away with a 60mm? It's 12x16x36"
     
  5. 2in10

    2in10 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Whatever lens you get make sure it fits the body. Most manufacturer make crop sensor bodies where they can use all of their lenses but full sensor bodies can not use lenses make for crop sensor cameras.
     
  6. norg.

    norg. Kole Tang

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    You really arent going to get anything quality macro even used for under 600. Atleast not from what I have seen with prices on used equipment. (I dont look that much though.) Going DSLR is a great call, but remember, to really be able to use the camera to it's fullest you have to know the basics of photography. Shutter speed, aperature, iso speed, all that fun stuff. Getting a good camera does you no good if you cant use it. I remember when I first got mine I was taking better pictures with my point and shoot because I didnt know how to properly use it. lol This is a big purchase so I would suggest doing a bunch of reading on camera basics then watch lots of videos on youtube and read lots of reviews regarding the camera you decide is right for you. Once you have a nice camera photography is really fun. Im sure you will be happy with the purchase you make. :)
     
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  7. 2in10

    2in10 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    This is a well stated post. A good macro lenses will be quite expensive. Getting a good P&S might be a good way to learn the basics of taking good pictures. If you do get a DLSR then taking a photography class at the local CC of JC would be a great investment. Reading and research will be your best friend followed very closely by lots of practice and more reading. It has done wonders for me.
     
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  9. needmorecowbell

    needmorecowbell Torch Coral

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    Thanks everyone, here's what I'm thinking I'm going to do. So I Dont have as much cost up front, I'm going to buy a used dslr with a kit lens. Ill practice with that for a while until I have enough money for the macro lens. I think id go with a 60mm instead of a 100mm, for one because my tank isnt very large, and for two, it's cheaper and will get the job done. I have been watching a lot of videos about it, I still don't think I would be comfortable with one though. I'm going to see if i can find anyone I know who will let me borrow one to practice with. There's a guy a little farther out from me who rents them out. For what I would want (t3i with 100mm macro), it would be 80$ for 3 days.. Not sure if it's worth it or not.
     
  10. 2in10

    2in10 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I have the T3i with the macro you are looking at renting. My macro is not stabilized. It is a fantastic combination and worth the money to rent. See if you can get a quick lesson out of him. The 60mm is designed for crop sensor bodies.

    Here is a shot I took of a FW shrimp. The shrimp is about 3/4" long and the lenses was not quite at 1:1 view which means it is being captured at the same size on the sensor as it is in life.

    [​IMG]

    I doubt you would go wrong with the 60mm from what I read.
     
  11. needmorecowbell

    needmorecowbell Torch Coral

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    Gotta love cherry shrimp :)

    I might contact him, 80$ is a little steep though... Well imo. I will be saving for a 60mm after i buy the camera, but I have a feeling I'll get addicted with the awesome photos and buy the 100mm at some point lol. Hopefully it doesn't steer me away from my tank, both these hobbies are going to make me homeless.
     
  12. Thatgrimguy

    Thatgrimguy Flying Squid

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    I know the feeling!