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Which New Digital Camera


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#1 Gmm213

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 01:04 AM

Im looking to buy a new didgital camera. Ive been looking around and have made myself more confused than Ive ever been in my life, and i get confused easily. I get megapixles. I get zoom, which i dont need a lot of. But now i find out there is SLR and DSLR and point and shoot and shutter speeds and noise reduction and ISOs with numbers. Which really confused me at first because I know of ISOs that have nothing to do with cameras.

All I want to know is what is the best for $200-$300ish price range for investigations?

#2 Haunting Research

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 10:15 AM

Honestly, if you want to use the camera for paranormal investigations, you want to stay away from digital and get a 35mm. Just something to think about....

When you take a picture with a digital camera you are getting a software interpretation of what the lens saw. You are getting a created picture that is really no different than if I were in the next room and came up to you and said I saw a ghost and drew you a picture of it using pencil and paper. If you use a 35mm camera you get an actual capture of what the lens saw. Digitals are great for pics of the family vacation. I have one for that purpose. My ONLY camera and the only camera my team uses are 35mm.

I know, there will be lots of irate people commenting on this because they love digital for instant results and it is easier. As for instant results, let's say you took a picture of a bird in flight in your back yard. Could you go back a minute later and expect to see the bird in the same place? I really don't think so. So, instant results to know where the ghosts are is ridiculous. Being cheaper and easier? Well, obviously it is no easier to put it on the computer. I have mine put on a disk for scrutiny and making it easy to upload to the computer without scanning them.

When it comes to equipment for paranormal research, credibility of the equipment for evidence collection is the number one question.
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#3 Gmm213

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 11:41 AM

What about DSLRs?

#4 Gmm213

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 12:22 PM

Also I know quite a few professinal photographers and they all use digital. Ive also heard that for low light situations digital can be better because they use sensors to capture the lioght that can be huge and work really well. Plus your theroy of drawing with pencil and paper. Isnt it the same either way. Both are what the lens saw and both are representations. Ones just analog and ones digital.

#5 Haunting Research

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 12:32 PM

That isn't true at all. Digital is a representation of what the lens saw and film is an actual impression of what the lens saw, believe me, there is a difference.

Sure, professional photographers use digital a lot but they are taking photos of tangible things such as people and locations. If I take a photo of you and you are wearing a green shirt and it comes out with the color of your shirt a little off, we can see that, it is tangible. Keep in mind that the ONLY way to reach the conclusion of being paranormal is to eliminate any possibility of the mundane. With digital media, that cannot happen.

You are free of course to do what ever you would like to do. Just trying to help out because I am always trying to help investigators do it right. We all have a choice to either do it right and be a true investigator or we can just join the ranks of the thrills and chills ghost hunters and run around for fun. Either way, it is everyone's choice.
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#6 Gmm213

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 12:45 PM

Alright I understand what your saying now. Are there any 35mm you would recommend that work good in low light?

#7 OMPRDave

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 03:44 PM

Having a good background in photography I don't think you need to jump from the digital bandwagon just yet. A decent 35mm SLR will run you as much as a digital SLR once you add in the flash attachments and lenses. Then there is processing costs every time you use it to get your prints. Yes, they do give you a negative as a back up. But even a good hoaxer can manipulate film before it's processed.

Digital photography HAS come a long way, and even though it's much easier to manipulate a digital photograph teh results are fantastic. But for basic paranormal research I've ditched my 35mm SLR and gone to a standard 12MP point-and shoot camera. I understand all the possible artifacts that can arise, as well as the cameras ability to see further into the opposite ends of the light spectrum and the inherent problems with particulates causing "orbs", but I don't use the camera to try and capture ghosts. I use it to supplement my research, document the area I am working in and the research set-up and that's about it.

I shoot with a Kodak Easyshare Z1275 and the results I get with it are more than adequate for what I need to do with it. If you decide on an SLR, I would recommend the Sony DSLR-A100. It will accept older Minolta Maxxum lenses, which will help you keep costs down (you can find lenses for these on eBay and Craigslist at very good prices). The features of these cameras will allow you do pretty much anything you can do with a convential SLR. Just make sure you get a decent tripod to secure the camera for low-light shots.

Edited by OMPRDave, 23 January 2010 - 03:45 PM.

"There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments and which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance - that principle is contempt prior to investigation." Herbert Spencer

#8 Gmm213

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 03:49 PM

What would you reccomend in the 200-300ish price range? I was looking at a Finepix S1500.

#9 Haunting Research

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 09:37 PM

Alright I understand what your saying now. Are there any 35mm you would recommend that work good in low light?

All you need is a simple point and shoot with an auto advance. That camera will serve you better than anything else can and it will actually be evidence. you can spend a million dollars on a digital for this purpose and you still don't have evidence. You don't need fancy attachments at all. One other thing to keep in mind is that the worst enemy of a digital cam is darkness.
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#10 OMPRDave

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 07:37 PM

Actually, darkness is the enemy of all photography. All photography is just an interpretation of light. Film cameras interpret the light coming in through the lens by reacting to the chemicals on the film. In a digital camera, the CMOS or the CCD. If using film it's recommended to use at least an 800 speed film minimum for shooting at night (faster spped films are available, but are pricey and hard to come by without going to a photography store). Having an SLR with aperture control is a great help as the f-stop can be stepped way down to allow more light to access the film though the wider aperture. Same goes for digital slrs. Point and shoot cameras without a flash are basically useless for shooting in the dark as they use a fixed aperture. There is no control over how much light reaches the film or CMOS/CCD unless the flash is fired. Longer shutter speeds with these cameras are almost pointless if there isn't enough ambient light to compensate.

If you are planning on documenting a dark area consider keeping a camcorder handy. If something emitting it's own light does appear the camera will capture it adequately and you will get hundreds of still versus trying to capture just one. It's hard enough to get a camera up to level in the dark and shoot as it is...imagine having to make sure all your settings are right, making sure the camera (on a tripod) is aimed just right, and carefully depressing the shutter release as not to shake the camera at all. It's near if not impossible to do. The video camera can be hand held, and just aimed.

So think of the camera as your best tool to document the environment and investigation and not so much the tool to try and document a possibly fleeting experience. If you gather a questionable image while shooting in regular light, all the better! You've then eliminated camera shake and over-exposure from the list of possible reasons why the photo is corrupted.

Edited by OMPRDave, 25 January 2010 - 07:38 PM.

"There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments and which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance - that principle is contempt prior to investigation." Herbert Spencer

#11 boatlesspirate

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Posted 26 January 2010 - 11:44 PM

Great Post Dave!
"How often have I said to you that when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth?" Sherlock Holmes-Sir Arthur Conan Doyle




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