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  1. #1
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    Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    Good evening everyone. I just found the photography review forums and it seems there are some other gear heads around. I have been using an Olympus 2100UZ for racing photography, but I am interested in updating to a digital slr. I have heard that dust on the sensor is a big issue, and I was wondering if anyone had experience with digital slrs at oval dirt tracks.

    I'm also wondering about weather resistance. It seems the digitals are more sensitive to weather than the 35mms.

    Previous to the Olympus I was using a Minolta 800si, which I have 2.8 lenses for, but I have seen alot of issues with the Minolta 7D's and I would like to get up to around 8mp. I was thinking about waiting to see what will be released this coming year, but I'm getting ansy for an upgrade. All total I'd like to keep the expenditure below the 1500.00 mark for both camera and lenses if needed.

    Any input is appreciated.

    Thanks.
    April

  2. #2
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    Hello Racinbabe98, and welcome!

    Hmmm, things sounded pretty good until you mentioned the $1500 limit. I don't know of a setup that would work at that cost. I don't know Nikon prices though as I'm a Canon shooter.
    Three years ago I went from the venerable C2100UZ to a Canon 1D. The C2100UZ is a great small camera but had issues with dirt and dust. The 1D ended that problem! If you had the $$ I'd suggest the Canon 1D MKII N and a Canon 70-200mm USM IS and a Canon 28-300mm USM IS which would give you a great track setup for both day and night along with a 580EX flash...but that is way over your price range at $8000+. It's exactly what your looking for though megapixels wise and dust and weather wise. Even a 20D isn't dust proof like the 1D is...very few camera bodies are, only the Pro bodies are sealed enough to really do the job. I do know some people who use the 10D and 20D at race tracks though...but they are constantly cleaning the things out due to dusty sensors. As long as you are carefull though you can change lenses and not worry about dust. Takes practice and knowing how to change the lens in dusty conditions is half the battle of keeping dust out.

    JS

  3. #3
    Not-so-recent Nikon Convert livin4lax09's Avatar
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    also keep in mind that just some specs of dust on the sensor don't really affect the image, especially when shooting wide open. If you stop down though, you'll start to see the dust

  4. #4
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    Quote Originally Posted by livin4lax09
    also keep in mind that just some specs of dust on the sensor don't really affect the image, especially when shooting wide open. If you stop down though, you'll start to see the dust
    How does the f-stop change the effects of dust on the filter?

    Redo

  5. #5
    Panarus biarmicus Moderator (Sports) SmartWombat's Avatar
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    Or for the price of the 1D buy two 20D bodies and don't change lenses ...
    I'm tempted
    PAul

    Scroll down to the Sports Forum and post your sports pictures !

  6. #6
    Panarus biarmicus Moderator (Sports) SmartWombat's Avatar
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    I really want to find the correct answer rather than half techincal BS to this question.
    PAul

    Scroll down to the Sports Forum and post your sports pictures !

  7. #7
    Not-so-recent Nikon Convert livin4lax09's Avatar
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    well, the more open a lens it, the less DOF it has. SO therefore, only your subject is in focus. But if it is stopped down, you start to get more depth of field. If you depth of field increases, you can see sharper objects in the distance. That also means you can see sharper objects that are closer than your subject. So the dust starts to appear. Stopped down at f/22, you'll get dark spots on your photo. Not a problem if you're shooting sports, but when you're shooting landscapes, it's a pain. There are many ways to get rid of the dust, but a lot of the times its nothing to worry about.

  8. #8
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    Thanks for all the input. The info. about when the dust becomes a problem is helpful as well. I think I'll keep watching how the market progresses before I decide.

    JS, I'm surprised you had dust issues with the 2100UZ. I haven't had any dust issues at all with is as far as the final picture goes. I admit it does have some dust in the viewfinder, but that doesn't effect the final output. I've used it for photos for racing magazines that I've been published in, and it's worked great! I'd just like more megapixels and the blackout when you hit the shutter does make it more challenging than an slr would be to pan with the cars.

    I did read tonight that the new Nikon D200 has additional sealing against weather and dust like their pro line. I'm in a camera club with Nikon owners and it seems they are always complaining about their accessories breaking or being stuck with having to upgrade to the latest external flash to get all the features of the new camera. I've also seen alot of people complain that their ergonomics and controls aren't designed as well as some of the others.

    I also think that Olympus has a heck of an idea with their dust cleaning sensor shimmy. If their new E-500 or E-300 had weather sealing like the E-1 I'd consider one of those. Although, I'd have to invest in new lenses and hope that their new lens mount sticks around.

    Well, from all the predictions I've seen for 2006 it seems the thought is that the manufacturers will hit the prosumer market pretty hard. I can always hope.

    April

  9. #9
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    Hi April,

    Well my C2100UZ saw a lot of dirt tracks and finally it killed the shutter. When it was checked out they said the dust got into the shutter mechanism causing it to stick. The photos didn't show dust, but boy did the viewfinder!
    I had several shots run in Sprint & Midget with that camera, but the change to the 1D was well worth it, the quality of shots is much better than the C2100UZ, and dust, rain etc. is no longer a concern as it was with the Olympus.Like tonight, I didn't have to worry about walking in the rain to a job, while everyone else was trying to hide their cameras from the rain.
    JS

  10. #10
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    Quote Originally Posted by Racinbabe98
    I've also seen alot of people complain that their ergonomics and controls aren't designed as well as some of the others.
    This is a big surprise to me. I have never heard anyone complain about ergonmics or controls on the Nikon bodies. To me this has always been one of teh strongest point of Nikon. Granted they have made the world of flash a little difficult the last few years. I've had to upgrrade a couple of times. But when It comes to a camera that fits the hands and has easy and convienant controls to use Nikon has always been a winner with me.
    Don't forget about the Gallery. Are your photos there??


    Nikon Samurai #13

    "A photographer is known by what he shows not by what he throws. The best photographers have the biggest trash cans." Quote from Nikon School sometime in the early 1970's.

  11. #11
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    I have heard of pros and cons of Nikon ergonomics, but most of those nays have come from people using the "brick" 1D cameras. They may be heavy but they are laid out well and the added wieght helps in panning, allowing smoother panning. That was the first thing I noticed going from the C2100UZ, panning was soo much easier. It only took one night at the track to get get used to the wieght and size of the 1D.

    JS

  12. #12
    Not-so-recent Nikon Convert livin4lax09's Avatar
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    cant wait to get used to MY 1d!

  13. #13
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    Thanks guys. This has been a good informative discussion. I'll probably be around more now that I discovered the forum side of things. It's good to find some others with appreciation for the finer side of life. I'll look forward to more racing posts.

    I just read Pop photos first impressions of the D200. Feature wise it's right where I'd like to be if I can find the budget for it. I'm going to look for some more info on it. One benefit I do see with Nikon is that there doesn't seem to be a shortage of used lenses.

    See ya,
    April

  14. #14
    Panarus biarmicus Moderator (Sports) SmartWombat's Avatar
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    Quote Originally Posted by Old Timer
    This is a big surprise to me. I have never heard anyone complain about ergonmics or controls on the Nikon bodies.
    You didn't hear me? I've said it lots of times.
    I loved the feel of the Nikon, far nicer than the Canon, fitted my small hand like a glove.

    But after playing with each for a couple of hours in the camera store, I just could not get to grips with the main control wheel on the Nikon.
    Canon has it on top of the grip, near the shutter release.
    Nikon has it under the top of the grip, far away from the shutter release.

    That really clinched it.
    Despite liking the Nikon, I bought the Canon because I could work it easier.
    It still dosn't feel right, my hands are too small (wonder how I'll like the 1D then?) but the controls mostly fall right to hand, and despite the slight stretch to use the rear control wheel, the main dial is right where I can work with it best.
    PAul

    Scroll down to the Sports Forum and post your sports pictures !

  15. #15
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    Hey SW,

    Well I have small hands too and I can work the 1D with no problem. Holding it isn't a problem either. I only have trouble reaching one switch and it's one I don't want to change anyway

    JS

  16. #16
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    Quote Originally Posted by livin4lax09
    well, the more open a lens it, the less DOF it has. SO therefore, only your subject is in focus. But if it is stopped down, you start to get more depth of field. If you depth of field increases, you can see sharper objects in the distance. That also means you can see sharper objects that are closer than your subject. So the dust starts to appear. Stopped down at f/22, you'll get dark spots on your photo. Not a problem if you're shooting sports, but when you're shooting landscapes, it's a pain. There are many ways to get rid of the dust, but a lot of the times its nothing to worry about.
    mmm... i think that your dust is on the lens, and not in the sensor. It could actually be inside the lens and not only on the front element.

    Dust on the sensor will block the light from hitting the photosites, regardless of the DOF.

  17. #17
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    Quote Originally Posted by Norfindel
    mmm... i think that your dust is on the lens, and not in the sensor. It could actually be inside the lens and not only on the front element.

    Dust on the sensor will block the light from hitting the photosites, regardless of the DOF.

    Correct! I'm glad someone finally got it! But even this one is kind of wrong. It is VERY difficult for dust actually get on the sensor. The dust gets on the IR Filter (infra red) not the sensor...photographers need to learn this and get used to it. The sensor is underneath the IR Filter.

    JS

  18. #18
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    Yes, but no one would say "i have dust in my ir filter"

  19. #19
    Not-so-recent Nikon Convert livin4lax09's Avatar
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    Re: Digital, Dust and Dirt Racing

    Quote Originally Posted by Norfindel
    mmm... i think that your dust is on the lens, and not in the sensor. It could actually be inside the lens and not only on the front element.

    Dust on the sensor will block the light from hitting the photosites, regardless of the DOF.
    no, it's not on the lens. I know this for a fact. And yes, as JS pointed out, it's not actually ON the sensor, but above it.

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