JHern wrote:Pardon me for piggy-backing onto this thread...BTW, good choice.
We left my Powershot A630 in a rental car in Houston...never to be seen again. That was a great camera, but a bit more pricey (around $400).
So I'm going to Japan in a month. We're going to buy a new camera when we get there, those stores are simply awesome! I'm debating with my wife now, but I think we might go with something as pricey as $1000 this time around (and not lose it!), but it depends a lot on the kinds of deals we can get.
I'm thinking of going with a Digital SLR this time, and while I've been happy with Canon I'm thinking of shopping around a bit more...e.g., Sony has gotten in on the action and has some killer DSLRs.
Anyone have any advice along these lines? What's the best rig I can get for under $1000?
When I was in Japan (2 years ago) the deals were the same as here in the US. I would buy here, get comfortable with the camera, and use it while touring Japan. To tell you the truth, all the cameras these days are awesome. It really boils down to the lens one uses. Usually the "stock" lens sold with the cameras are only useful in brighter light, but often the best times to shoot are when the light is low. This is why to really have a great camera, one should have a "fast" lens or in other words a lens which offers a wider F-Stop or Aperture. These types of lenses cost a lot, and are big and heavy compared to the more affordable ones. If you buy a Canon or Nikon (either one is my advice) then you can shop for used lenses or even Tamron, Tokina, and Sigma ones made to fit a Canon or Nikon. That way the high end "fast" lens will be more affordable. Look for a lens that offers at least a 2.8 aperture opening. Be careful though because most zoom lenses will only offer the wide aperture when at wide angle but when you zoom into telephoto the aperture will change from 2.8 and not remain constant. Look for a constant "fast" aperture. In canon those are the famous "L" line of lenses. An "L" lens usually goes for $1000 or more. It is all about the lens. Of course if all you take are snap shots in the middle of the day any camera with any lens works awesome. This all pertains to low light or action photography where your subject or yourself are moving. Good luck.
Nara school kids
The Great Barry Bonds (notice how I was able to throw the background out of focus using 2.8 which is another benefit to a fast lens)