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Wilderness Photography The Wilderness Photography forum is for the discussion of photography (videography) gear, experience, and technique as it directly relates to wilderness photography. PBF members may also post self-owned photos that have been uploaded to the PB Gallery or as post attachments. Offsite links and offsite photos are prohibited. Please see ("sticky") instructional post located at top of threads.


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  #1  
Old 12-27-2008, 12:57 AM
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WildlifeNate WildlifeNate is offline
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DSLR Camera Accessories

I got starter funds for Christmas to buy a DSLR. I hope to get the camera in a month or two after saving the remaining necessary funds. I'll probably be getting a Canon Rebel XS or XSi, depending on the deals available when I buy.

I'm curious what accessories folks recommend for taking the camera on the trail. I don't envision taking it on every trip, but maybe I will...haha. I want a protective pouch that will keep it accessible. I like the chest straps for binoculars to keep them in the front. I'm assuming there's such a thing for DSLR cameras. What front packs are comfortable to wear with a backpack and also offer weather protection?

An extra battery looks worthwhile. Aside from lenses (which I'll be adding later), anything else worth spending money on?
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  #2  
Old 12-27-2008, 10:33 AM
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eay eay is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WildlifeNate
Aside from lenses (which I'll be adding later), anything else worth spending money on?

some kind of lightweight tripod - it can be something like a gorillapod but make sure the tripod you get is rated for the weight of the camera plus your heaviest potential lens.
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  #3  
Old 12-27-2008, 11:20 AM
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adohrn adohrn is offline
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Get a basic filter and keep it on the lens. sky, uv, ect.. This will protect the lens from being scratched.

Most filters have become redundant as photoshop can imitate them easily. A few of them like Polarizing filters are still a must as photoshop can change the characteristics of a picture, but not the actual quality of it.
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  #4  
Old 12-28-2008, 06:21 AM
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Benwaller Benwaller is offline
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I recommend the Pod also, as setting an expensive camera on a rock is improper treatment of your expensive and somewhat fragile camera.

A circular polarizing filter, rather than just a UV glass, is the hot ticket, especially for getting the blue out of the blue sky. $15 (or less).

The foam, form-fitted camera jacket is also required equipment. Hauling a full-rig camera case is doable but you'll tire of it quickly. $20-25.

Unless you have a special shot in mind that requires some special lens, stay with the kit lens that comes with the camera. Lighter is better.

Get an extra battery and keep it warm. $30.

Get the biggest, fastest, highest quality SD that you can afford. Reformat it every time you go out. Prices vary.

Finally, look at the Nikons as well as the Canons. I've been shooting a D40 (not vibration/shake isolated) for almost 2 years now and it has been very reliable. It is also very small as DSLRs go.

Enjoy and

Ben
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  #5  
Old 12-28-2008, 02:30 PM
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WildlifeNate WildlifeNate is offline
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I'm partial to the ultrapods...have been using them for years. If the small one I have doesn't work out, I'll probably just get the larger version.

I'm pretty well set on Canon (at least at the price range I'm looking at). I have a friend with a D40 and a friend with an XTi. My dad's got the Digital Rebel, also. I just prefer the Canons.

A polarizing filter sounds like a good add-on.

What's the deal with reformatting the memory card so often? I've been using digicams for a long time and have never had an issue except with a super cheap SD card labeled as 4GB that was really just 1GB (so I understand buying high quality memory cards).
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  #6  
Old 12-28-2008, 04:26 PM
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Benwaller Benwaller is offline
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Nate,

I got that from Ken Rockwell. He's a professional type and claims that reformatting removes the lingering bit artifact; typically invisible to the standard eye but can become numerous and problematic when working RAW images. I take his word for it, reformat my cards every time I unload 'em and I've had no trouble.

I understand your partiality to the Canon. Great glass, good cameras, I even own one. But I do appreciate the Nikon for its size and soundness.

Ufortunately Nikon put the motor in the lense on the D40/et al which renders earlier autofocus lenses useless. Too bad. Still, the D40 is a really good camera, small, easy to use and I like it a lot. But you know how it is, once you get used to a camera it's pretty easy to think it's the best thing since flapjacks.

Guilty as charged.

A foam, fitted case for any camera taken into the woods is a requirement. I can sling the little D40 around my neck and off to one side under an arm and it stays protected and available. Don't leave home without one.

Ben
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  #7  
Old 12-30-2008, 08:30 PM
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3Pinner 3Pinner is offline
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For my Olympus DSLR:
LowePro Nova 2 bag - carrys camera, 2 lenses, and accessories.
Velbon Maxi tripod - much better than a gorilla pod etc. You can compose the shot the way you want it.
Adjustable trekking pole with removable top - use as a walking stick, doubles as a monopod (redundant - yes, but there are times that either the tripod or the monopod are the best solution for a shot)
1.4 tele extender
extension ring for macro work.
UV filters for both lenses,
Polarizing filter
Graduated grey filter (for high contrast lighting conditions)
Coming from a film background, I am a firm believer in getting the best possible exposure in the camera, rather than just blaze away and "fix it later" with software.
Lens cleaning stuff
Extra Battery
2 extra memory cards.

the entire mess really doesn't weigh that much. I got the Olympus because it has great glass, IS in the camera body (so any lens I use gets the benefit of stabilization)
And they were the lightest weight of the 3 that I looked at, Canon Nikon and Olympus.
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  #8  
Old 12-31-2008, 11:33 AM
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WildlifeNate WildlifeNate is offline
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I'm coming from a P&S background. What do the tele extender and extension ring do? I've seen these for sale fairly inexpensive, but have no clue what they're for.
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  #9  
Old 01-02-2009, 05:31 AM
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gunn_parker gunn_parker is offline
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Hi Nat
I have a Nikon D70s and love it. I use a bag from Lowepro that has a top opening and can clip to the front two straps of the shoulder harness or I can slide my waist belt through it. This is my preferred method of carrying it. The weight is on my hips and I can look down, zip open the bag and take photos.

I always have a uv filter screwed onto the lens to protect the glass of the lens and to really bring up the blues in the sky.

I wish I had a light weight tripod, look for one that your happy to carry, with tripods heaviest is best for stability, so it's kinda a trade off.

Make sure with a light weight one it will reach up to your height. I looked at some before Xmas and the weight was good but they were so very short.

Maybe look at a mono pod and a piece of string to step on to stabilize the mono pod.

cheers
Gunn
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  #10  
Old 01-02-2009, 07:02 PM
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Benwaller Benwaller is offline
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Oh yeah, I forgot the filters: 1 circular polarizing/UV, 1 graduated neutral density (grey, ND4 or 0.6). The polarizing thing is obvious. The ND helps the camera process both the sky and the ground at the same time (drops the f-stop 2 stops on the area you need to control (the sky)). Makes the sky bluer (darkens it because it gets the grey) and the ground objects more distinct (gets the clear glass). At least that's what I've been told and it appears to work. Search the net for the particulars and so forth.

And it will make you feel better about your investment. Works for me and I'm no scientist and I'm no artist either but I like to make good pictures without going nuts in the process.

Ben
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