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DPChallenge Forums >> Hardware and Software >> Essential Accessories for a new dSLR
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06/07/2006 11:59:34 AM · #1
Originally posted by diablo2097:

whats an expodisk? and is it best to buy a calibrated grey card? any particular ones?

thanks


An expodisk is a device that you place in front of your lens that reads the available light and converts it to 18% grey. You can read about it here Expodisk Some people will say you can achieve the same result with a coffee filter or styrofoam cup - and in good, simple lighting they do a pretty good job. Those methods fail miserably where expodisk shines in complicated lighting situations. A grey card will do a good job too, but IMO, are less convenient to use becuase you have to place them in the light you are shooting in and then point your lens at it to get a reading. For example, shooting theatrical work where light changes, you can't run up on stage to get a reading on the card. I can point the lens at the light and get my readings.
Proper WB is a key element in digital photography and the better you get it up front, the less you will have problems in post, RAW or not.
06/07/2006 11:37:32 AM · #2
Originally posted by nards656:

Originally posted by Gatorguy:



One accessory that I do not leave home without is my expodisk for setting white balance. They are expensive and you can get by without them by using a calibrated grey card. You can get pocket-sized coated cards from whibal. You will get much better color control than with the presets of your camera.



Shooting RAW is a better option for me. Just MO.


I also shoot RAW, but having proper white balance ahead of time will eliminate problems that can arise due to improper WB such as blown color channels. I would much rather get accurate WB right off the bat, than adjust sliders and guess what's accurate.

It's what works for me and most of the people I shoot with.
06/07/2006 10:38:21 AM · #3
Great advice on all points! Especially the battery!!!

Originally posted by BrennanOB:

The second battery is not for continuous shooting, it is for those times you head out to shoot something and realise when you get there that you forgot to charge up from the last shoot. Do that once and you will spend the money when you get back home with memories of what you missed. I own four and once had two fail on the same shoot. There are some third party batteries on the net for half the price of those with the Canon stamp.

Rather than owning one four gig card buy four one gig card, they are about the same cost and you have faster seek times and when the card fails (like the battery it has a limited life and is easily buggered) you will still be able to shoot with the other three.

Don't go too cheap on the filter, why put lousy glass on the end of good glass? On the other hand spending fifty five bucks to insure the health of a seventy dollar lens may not be a wise investment. The polarising filter might be a better buy if you are only going to buy one filter.
06/07/2006 10:08:30 AM · #4
Originally posted by diablo2097:

would a cheap UV filter be a bad idea even on the kit lens?


Yes. It makes an "OK" lens into a "fair" lens. Or worse, depending on how cheap your filter is.
06/07/2006 10:07:41 AM · #5
Originally posted by Gatorguy:



One accessory that I do not leave home without is my expodisk for setting white balance. They are expensive and you can get by without them by using a calibrated grey card. You can get pocket-sized coated cards from whibal. You will get much better color control than with the presets of your camera.



Shooting RAW is a better option for me. Just MO.
06/07/2006 10:06:54 AM · #6
Originally posted by blemt:

I know lots of folks say there's no need for UV filters. It takes one time of dropping a lens to convert you. :)

It's $15, and until you are at a point where you spend 1k on a lens I think the benifits of the filter far outweigh any downsides.


i agree... buy the @#$^! filter and put it on your lens, especially if you're a noob. if you can afford it, buy the nicer hoya, but get one...

when you're more familure with the camera, you'll learn when you need to remove it first, but that lesson won't cost you a scratched lens when you put your camera back in your bag w/o the cap one time too many...
06/07/2006 10:02:57 AM · #7
i'm in the "NO UV filter" camp.

i am, however, very PRO lens hood ... it'll provide protection from light AND damage.
06/07/2006 09:54:14 AM · #8
whats an expodisk? and is it best to buy a calibrated grey card? any particular ones?

thanks
06/06/2006 10:22:22 PM · #9
I agree with some of the others about putting a cheap filter in front of good glass - it just doesn't make logical sense. Personally, I don't use protective filters anymore. When I use a filter, it will be for a specific purpose i.e. polarizer or ND.

Others mentioned tripods. A good suggestion and you're wasting your money if you go cheap on that too because you will just end up buying a better one later. I also use a monopod. It's more convenient to use than a tripod (but doesn't replace a tripod) and to get that extra one or two stops it's invaluable. A decent one with a decent head will cost you about $70-$100.

One accessory that I do not leave home without is my expodisk for setting white balance. They are expensive and you can get by without them by using a calibrated grey card. You can get pocket-sized coated cards from whibal. You will get much better color control than with the presets of your camera.

Good Luck

Message edited by author 2006-06-06 22:24:16.
06/06/2006 09:32:57 PM · #10
The second battery is not for continuous shooting, it is for those times you head out to shoot something and realise when you get there that you forgot to charge up from the last shoot. Do that once and you will spend the money when you get back home with memories of what you missed. I own four and once had two fail on the same shoot. There are some third party batteries on the net for half the price of those with the Canon stamp.

Rather than owning one four gig card buy four one gig card, they are about the same cost and you have faster seek times and when the card fails (like the battery it has a limited life and is easily buggered) you will still be able to shoot with the other three.

Don't go too cheap on the filter, why put lousy glass on the end of good glass? On the other hand spending fifty five bucks to insure the health of a seventy dollar lens may not be a wise investment. The polarising filter might be a better buy if you are only going to buy one filter.
06/06/2006 08:28:02 PM · #11
I know lots of folks say there's no need for UV filters. It takes one time of dropping a lens to convert you. :)

It's $15, and until you are at a point where you spend 1k on a lens I think the benifits of the filter far outweigh any downsides.
06/06/2006 08:26:32 PM · #12
batteries and memory cards

Message edited by author 2006-06-06 20:27:11.
06/06/2006 08:24:54 PM · #13
would a cheap UV filter be a bad idea even on the kit lens?
06/06/2006 01:49:04 AM · #14
For all digital cameras, the VERY BASIC will be a larger memory card - unless you haven't got the kit lens, then go get the 50mm 1.8 like they said (can't shoot photo without lens, dear)
06/06/2006 01:31:28 AM · #15
Originally posted by diablo2097:


- UV filter - i've heard conflicting things about buying cheap UV filters... some say it's not worth putting a cheap filter on a lens... what do you guys think?



Ugh, please do not put a cheap UV filter on anything. The ones you'll buy from non-camera places (and probably from regular camera places as well) are probably non- or single-coated and WILL degrade your image.

I'm not really a fan of them in general (I think lens hoods are much better, and those will actually improve your images), but if you don't use hoods and constantly drop your camera face-down onto rocks, I suppose you could go for a multi-coated one, like a Hoya HMC/Super HMC.
06/06/2006 12:58:55 AM · #16
Hey all, thanks for the quick responses. I'll be using the camera initially for a bit of everything, as I'd like to have a go at everything before settling down to one particular area. In the future, though i think i'd like to give macro photography a go...

Anyways, i've been going through the suggestions, and so far this is what i've come up with. How does this sound?

Stuff needed with camera purchase
- 1GB CF card (quite cheap, and can later upgrade to a 4GB one, then i'll have a spare 1GB, already got a reader)
- Backpack style bag (lowepro backpacks look nice, but are their cheaper alternatives that are good?)
- Tripod (already have a cheapo one, so will stick with it for now)

Stuff ASAP when money comes in
- macro lens rings
- sensor cleaning kit
- polarising filter
- Cannon 50mm f1.8

Stuff i'm not sure about
- battery - seems most people are managing with one battery per shoot, so i guess this can wait
- handgrip - don't have big hands, shouldn't be a problem :P
- UV filter - i've heard conflicting things about buying cheap UV filters... some say it's not worth putting a cheap filter on a lens... what do you guys think?

How does this sound to you guys? does it seem like a good way to go? later obviously i'd add in proper lenses etc etc
06/05/2006 06:54:23 PM · #17
a nice bag for all these accessories?

I use the Lowepro MicroTrekker 100, nice and small, and counts as a man purse for carry on luggage :-)
06/05/2006 06:34:38 PM · #18
Originally posted by fotomann_forever:

Originally posted by Guyver:

A Canon 50mm 1.8

:)


Ditto that... best investment you will ever make


85mm f1.8 if you have the dinero

atleast 4gigs of memory

backup battery

good flash

Message edited by author 2006-06-05 18:35:23.
06/05/2006 12:17:45 PM · #19
Tripod, tripod, tripod...

Remote cable.
06/05/2006 12:15:52 PM · #20
UV filter! Dropped mine last week and the cracked filter saved the lens.
06/05/2006 12:13:33 PM · #21
oh... ok =)
06/05/2006 12:13:09 PM · #22
$72 on Amazon. Fast light sharp.
06/05/2006 12:12:49 PM · #23
Originally posted by ChikaZAWa:

Whats so great about that lens?


Ok I'm a P&S user, but I've heard only good things about the lens. Very good for low light photography, portraiture, and very good quality glass. Am I right? ;-)
06/05/2006 12:12:16 PM · #24
Originally posted by ChikaZAWa:

Whats so great about that lens?


Super Fast, Super Sharp, Super Cheap!

A must have at $75.00
06/05/2006 12:12:00 PM · #25
It's under $100, and it takes nice sharp pictures. It makes a good portrait lens.
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