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DPChallenge Forums >> Hardware and Software >> Refurbished vs. Used Camera Bodies
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03/14/2015 07:35:36 PM · #1
It is time for a camera body upgrade.... My Canon Rebel XTi (400D)is not giving me the results I want, lots of noise and blur now that I have moved to shooting in RAW format.

I am considering the 70D, and wonder if anyone has experience or advice to offer on going refurbished vs. used. I don't have funds to buy lenses so I will still have my Cannon 18-55 f/3.5-5.6 and the Tamron 55-200 F4-5.6 LD Di-II.

I shoot mostly landscapes and some wildlife, with a little bit of macro and studio work too.

Are their distinct advantages or disadvantages to refurbished vs. new? Are there warranty and/or grey market issues to consider?
03/14/2015 07:44:49 PM · #2
I bought my 50D refurbished direct from Canon and have had it for a few years now. The only problem I have had with it is I realized recently that the pop up flash no longer pops up. I don't use it anyway.

Depending on where you get it from, refurbished may simply mean someone returned it and it was cleaned and checked over.
03/14/2015 08:11:56 PM · #3
Originally posted by Yo_Spiff:

I bought my 50D refurbished direct from Canon and have had it for a few years now. The only problem I have had with it is I realized recently that the pop up flash no longer pops up. I don't use it anyway.

Depending on where you get it from, refurbished may simply mean someone returned it and it was cleaned and checked over.


Push sideways on it when you try to release it. It'll usually go.
03/14/2015 08:46:42 PM · #4
70D's a very nice camera; that's our last Canon, we sold all the rest and kept the 70D because the reversible LCD makes it a killer self-portrait tool, plus to use the Lensbaby stuff we have... You can always trust a Canon factory refurb. Some argue they are likely to be BETTER than new...
03/14/2015 09:12:23 PM · #5
How on earth can they be better than new Robert?
03/14/2015 09:39:52 PM · #6
Their better than new in the essence that what ever was malfunctioning from the original build has been corrected. In some cases they will rework other known issues so that the unit does not return. I have purchased two Nikon refurbs and they have been solid.
03/14/2015 09:59:53 PM · #7
Originally posted by Catherine_B:

How on earth can they be better than new Robert?

What Damon said. And many of these cameras were never even actually used at all; someone bought them and then, for whatever reason, returned them. At which point they go to a Canon facility and get checked out, by hand, from top to bottom before they are resold as refurbs. I've never actually known anyone who had a problem with a refurb.
03/14/2015 10:16:04 PM · #8
I bought my 5d2 refurbed. Never any problems. Do they still do canon loyalty program where you send in and old point and shoot and get an additional 10-20% off?

Edit: royalty to loyalty.

Message edited by author 2015-03-15 07:58:54.
03/14/2015 11:05:45 PM · #9
Originally posted by Catherine_B:

How on earth can they be better than new Robert?


I experienced some problems with a camera a while back and sent it in to Canon for repair.

Not only did they fix the problem identified, they replaced a whole series of parts that apparently were showing some wear and others that had been the subject of complaints and the like.

I still have that camera and it works like a charm.

Definitely the way I intend to proceed should I require a new camera in the future.\

Ray
03/15/2015 12:07:09 AM · #10
Originally posted by Mike:

I bought my 5d2 refurbed. Never any problems. Do they still do canon royalty program where you send in and old point and shoot and get an additional 10-20% off?


That is worth a phone call to check out! I have an old P&S that could be sacrificed for the cause!
03/15/2015 01:55:27 AM · #11
Another vote for refurb.....My D600 and some lenses I've bought over the years have been refurb and I've had nary a problem.
03/15/2015 07:53:49 AM · #12
Originally posted by Catherine_B:

My Canon Rebel XTi (400D)is not giving me the results I want, lots of noise and blur now that I have moved to shooting in RAW format.


go back to jpeg and pocket the cash.
03/15/2015 08:01:33 AM · #13
Originally posted by Catherine_B:

Originally posted by Mike:

I bought my 5d2 refurbed. Never any problems. Do they still do canon royalty program where you send in and old point and shoot and get an additional 10-20% off?


That is worth a phone call to check out! I have an old P&S that could be sacrificed for the cause!


I bought an broken old p&s off enact to trade in for $10. I never had to send it in. Only provide the serial number. Canon clp had a special number to call.
03/15/2015 06:45:30 PM · #14

I bought an broken old p&s off enact to trade in for $10. I never had to send it in. Only provide the serial number. Canon clp had a special number to call. [/quote]

I will check that out tomorrow. Thank you everyone for the information and suggestions!
03/15/2015 08:02:32 PM · #15
https://fstoppers.com/business/canon-photographers-biggest-secret-exposed-3193
03/15/2015 10:38:26 PM · #16
Originally posted by Catherine_B:

My Canon Rebel XTi (400D)is not giving me the results I want, lots of noise and blur now that I have moved to shooting in RAW format.


Originally posted by Tiny:

go back to jpeg and pocket the cash.

What on earth does any of this mean????
03/15/2015 10:41:13 PM · #17
Originally posted by NikonJeb:

Originally posted by Catherine_B:

My Canon Rebel XTi (400D)is not giving me the results I want, lots of noise and blur now that I have moved to shooting in RAW format.

Originally posted by Tiny:

go back to jpeg and pocket the cash.

What on earth does any of this mean????

Nothing, as far as I can see. Possibly Catherine is making RAW conversions with excessive local area contrast and is reading that as "noisier" than her SFC JPGs; it certainly happened to me. Tiny, though, is just being Tiny :-)
03/15/2015 10:45:50 PM · #18
Originally posted by Catherine_B:

My Canon Rebel XTi (400D)is not giving me the results I want, lots of noise and blur now that I have moved to shooting in RAW format.

Originally posted by Tiny:

go back to jpeg and pocket the cash.

Originally posted by NikonJeb:

What on earth does any of this mean????

Originally posted by Bear_Music:

Nothing, as far as I can see. Possibly Catherine is making RAW conversions with excessive local area contrast and is reading that as "noisier" than her SFC JPGs; it certainly happened to me. Tiny, though, is just being Tiny :-)

Okay.....I moved to RAW an eon ago and actually have great difficulty with jpeg. The concept of RAW files being worse than jpegs just baffles me.

As for Tiny......duly noted.
03/15/2015 10:47:46 PM · #19
The Canon 70D is a great camera. Bought mine used from our local camera store. They've got a good rep, are an authorized Canon dealer (Nikon too, just to keep the pot boiling). The camera was like new, and I've forgot it wasn't new when I got it.
03/15/2015 10:50:55 PM · #20
Originally posted by NikonJeb:



As for Tiny......duly noted.


You're just now noticing this?

I used to detest it, now I'm almost back to finding it charming, in a psychotic sort of way. ;-)
03/15/2015 10:57:36 PM · #21
Okay.....I moved to RAW an eon ago and actually have great difficulty with jpeg. The concept of RAW files being worse than jpegs just baffles me.

As for Tiny......duly noted. [/quote]

Let me clarify. I was taking JPEG images for years and finally got some post processing software to handle RAW images. When I started shooting in RAW my image quality suffered. I blamed my elementary post processing skills, but after months of working at it and still having a lot of noise issues I determined that my camera sensor is not helping me. Rather than going back to JPEG, it makes more sense to upgrade the camera! Since my bankroll is not endless, and I still need to eat, I thought I would ask for some advice about what camera to upgrade to....


Message edited by author 2015-03-15 22:58:20.
03/15/2015 11:00:42 PM · #22
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

Originally posted by NikonJeb:

Originally posted by Catherine_B:

My Canon Rebel XTi (400D)is not giving me the results I want, lots of noise and blur now that I have moved to shooting in RAW format.

Originally posted by Tiny:

go back to jpeg and pocket the cash.

What on earth does any of this mean????

Nothing, as far as I can see. Possibly Catherine is making RAW conversions with excessive local area contrast and is reading that as "noisier" than her SFC JPGs; it certainly happened to me. Tiny, though, is just being Tiny :-)


Could the problem be my settings in Lightroom? How would I adjust this to see if it is a processing issue?
03/15/2015 11:15:59 PM · #23
Originally posted by Catherine_B:

Could the problem be my settings in Lightroom? How would I adjust this to see if it is a processing issue?

When you go into the "Develop" module, in the "Basic" panel everything should be zero. The tone curve should be straight. In the "Detail" panel there should be zero sharpening and zero noise reduction. This would be the neutral setting with no automatic or profile adjustments dialed in. Now, in the Detail panel there's a square that shows a 100% zoom on a section of your image; in the upper left of that is a cross-hairs type icon. Click on the icon then hover over the part of the image you want to look at and click. What you see in the box, is what your sensor's giving you, and as unmanipulated as possible, basically.

If it's significantly cleaner than what you're used to seeing, then your processing has been ramping up the noise; that's easy to do. If it's about what you're used to, apply from noise reduction in the panel one below that box and see if things get better.

The thing of it is, JPG files have noise reduction applied by the camera. RAW files do not. Your Rebel 400 actually IS relatively noisy compared to the latest standards, for sure. If you DID upgrade to the 70D you'd see a dramatic increase in image quality, I suspect.

On the other hand, I have looked at the large original of this image of yours, a recent one, and see no noise issues at all.

' . substr('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_portfolio/30000-34999/30490/120/Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1143836.jpg', strrpos('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_portfolio/30000-34999/30490/120/Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1143836.jpg', '/') + 1) . '

Message edited by author 2015-03-15 23:18:53.
03/16/2015 09:36:05 AM · #24
noise is a function of the sensor's inability to measure the light hitting it properly.

A few things can cause this.

Low light as in night photos or dark scenes. When the intensity of the light is very low it can become too close to the level of noise naturally found in the sensor and some pixels can appear as noise because the noise level measured for them is very close or higher than the actual intensity of the light.

When the shutter is kept open for a "long time", more noise will be introduced to the photo. A slow shutter speed translates to the sensor accumulating more light per pixel. As the sensor is accumulating more light light in each pixel it is also accumulating noise.

noise from high sensitivity or high ISO, is implemented by mechanisms that result in amplification. The sensor amplifies the measurements it takes and because there is no way to just amplify the actual light that falls on the sensor, the noise and the actual light are both amplified and the sensor becomes sensitive not only to light but also to its own noise.

If you are taking images where the light levels are properly exposed, noise should not be a concern. Most of us experience noise when we try to increase an underexposed image in post processing or when we turn up the ISO at the time of capture. If noise is a big concern, than yes a newer camera will help you, but depending on what type of images you shoot will you may not notice an improvement. You may be better off buying a good tripod for significantly less money and properly exposing the image with a longer shutter.

With regard to shooting RAW vs JPEG, raw files offer significant improvement over a jpeg when it comes to noise control since there is much more info to work with. If you noticed a problem since you switched formats, I'm guessing that you are now seeing the nose that was removed in post by your camera and using light room you should be able to replicate if not get better results than what the camera was doing for you.

Before you go off and drop money on new gear, see if you can improve the noise reduction yourself through a combination of noise suppression and sharpening.
03/16/2015 10:37:33 PM · #25
Thank you Robert and Mike for the excellent explanation. I went out and shot some more images tonight to see if I can get a better handle on my issue. You have both given me food for thought. I don't want to spend money solving a problem that is really in post processing. Time for some more analysis.....
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