panorama software,virtual tour software
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Joined: 2008-11-10
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2008-12-30
#1

Which Camera

I'm looking at upgrading from a one-shot 0-360 lense and a Canon Powershot 5G. Time for the big leagues. But I want to take the step by step approach. I know the initial out lay is going to be expensive so I want to with baby steps. I have been reviewing all the wonderful advice here and have been looking at the Canon 40D, or a Nikon D300. I really prefer the D300.

I just need to know the following:

What lens? , What panohead?, Tripod? and anything else I may be missing.

I've recently upgraded to TW4 and have played with the RAW format for the full screen option but it does compare to you guys.

Any helsp would be appreciated.

Thanks in advance

Lee

Have a great safe and Happy New Year

Phil 4:16


Lee Scott - Nikon D3/D300/D5000 - |shaved Nikkor 10.5 mm| Manfrotto 055XPROB tripod /322RC2 Grip - Mrotator TCS |CS5 | PW7 & TW6.5 Pro
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To err is human ... to not try is just plain lazy
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2008-12-30
#2
Lee, welcome to the forum
Philemon 1:3

Any reason you prefer the Nikon to the Canon ? Once you get the hang of the DSLR and fisheye it won't be long that you will want to go full sensor. IMO Canon offers the 5D at a reasonable price compared to Nikon. Just something to look at further down the road.

If I were in a little better position, I would offer you a good deal on my 40D I just received back in June. However, with the wife out of work and pano sales down, I can't upgrade to the 5D just yet.

As far as my lens recommendation, I would (did) go with the
Sigma 8mm

Pano head that I recommend is the Agnos TCPs

Tripod that I use is the Manfrotto 190XPROB

However, I would like to have the horizontal option at times and would purchase the Manfrotto 055XPROB if I had it do over again.

You will also need a a quick leveler head. I use the Manfrotto 222, another option is the Manfrotto 322 and it holds a little more weight.

With that, if I had it ALL to do over again...I would purchase the
Canon 5D Mark II, EF 16- 35 2.8 L, EF 24 - 70 2.8 L, EF 70 - 200 2.8 L IS these options would keep my camera bag simple and uncluttered. Four lens's total (don't forget the Sigma 8mm fisheye, it's not leaving the bag ) One for landscapes, one for general purpose (walk around lens) and a telephoto. All having the ability to shoot quickly in low light conditions at 2.8.

So you asked what I would recommend, there you go I'll send you my address for shipment

Good luck to you and may you and your family have a wonderful and blessed new year.

Regards,
Pixel
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2008-12-31
#3

Actually reading over the forums and viewing the websites you all have "You, Smooth" and a few others I am in Awe of your work. I wish only to grow up and be as good as you all.

I also noticed that you have and use the Canon 40D and 28-135 lens for $925 w/ warranty. And I figured that would be a good starting point to get into the market.

The 5D is out of my price range (I see why you would send the address I gotta talk to Santa)

I can get the D300 for around $869 http://1wayphoto.com/products.asp?product_id=13377   But would still have to retrofit with the rest of the gear.

I really want to step up my skill set and most importantly what I can offer my clients.

I looked over your suggestions and they look really good. I believe I am going to really look at the 40D.

Thanks so much for you insight, it is MUCH appreciated!

And may you and your family as well have a Blessed New Year

Proverbs 27:17 


Lee Scott - Nikon D3/D300/D5000 - |shaved Nikkor 10.5 mm| Manfrotto 055XPROB tripod /322RC2 Grip - Mrotator TCS |CS5 | PW7 & TW6.5 Pro
----
To err is human ... to not try is just plain lazy
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2008-12-31
#4
I'm not sure you were looking at my work to be in Awe , Smooth's work yes!

You will find that there are guys who recommend only Canon and some that recommend only Nikon. I am a Canon guy and recommend their product. That being said, the choice clearly comes down to you and your needs. I will say that what ever your choice, Nikon or Canon, be careful where you buy.

The link you listed to 1way photo does not receive very good REVIEWS. I would stick with the better known stores, such as B & H or ADORAMA for a purchase of this magnitude. Depending on what part of the US your in, you may even try your local camera shop.

If you are on a tighter budget, I would also recommend the Canon Rebel series for starting out. By the time you factor the price of the Sigma 8mm, Agnos Head, Tripod and quick leveler head things can add up in a hurry. Just another option to look at. I started with the Rebel XT (350D) and just updated this past summer.

Looking forward to seeing your work with your new gear.

Proverbs 13:20


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2008-12-31
#5

Pixel,

Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! Web searches are not always the best buy! The Canon is from Craigs list here in (FL). I looked at the Canon site at the EOS Rebel XS 18-55IS Kit and it looks like a perfect match for the price. It should work well with the above mentioned items.

I presently own the Canon Powershot G5 and it's time to upgrade and sell this Kit. I appreciate all you advice and suggestions.

Once I am up and running I will send you my before and afters

BTW I really love your logo - who designed it? I am not that visual

1 Peter 5:6

Lee


Lee Scott - Nikon D3/D300/D5000 - |shaved Nikkor 10.5 mm| Manfrotto 055XPROB tripod /322RC2 Grip - Mrotator TCS |CS5 | PW7 & TW6.5 Pro
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To err is human ... to not try is just plain lazy
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2008-12-31
#6
Lee,

Your welcome ! I have done a lot of business with B & H and would recommend them. My wife purchased the 40D for my birthday this past summer from a local retailer. She did pay a little extra from buying at a brick and mortar store. However, it is nice knowing that all I have to do should a problem arise is make a short drive and let them take a look at it.

The Rebel will be a really good start. It served me fine from 2004 to 2008 and actually still works just fine.

Thanks for the kudos on the logo I designed it myself but need to do some more work on my site. I am trying to get the design together for the parent company for 360 Virtuals. After talking with my tax accountant, my wife and I are setting up an S Inc and 360 Virtuals will do business as Earth Works Media

(Earth Works Media came from Matthew, Kerrie and Madison)

I designed the logo for this site as well, just trying to figure out how I want to build the site. This site is going to house my virtual tours, portrait and landscape photography along with media and web design.

If you need some help on a logo just let me know.
I Thessalonians 5: 9-11
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2008-12-31
#7

Hi Lee and welcome to the forum. As you can see below I am a Nikon D300 user. Whether you buy Canon or Nikon is probably not that important unless you are looking way down the road. Nikon's new D3X will set you back about 8K and all your D300 lens would work I believe. But seriously, the point I am trying to make is don't make the mistakes most of us have already made by not getting the very best you can afford. You WILL upgrade down the road. I would love to have 1/2 the money back that I spent on upgrades. Pix has made some great suggestions for the Canon and you already know what to get in the Nikon line. If you go Nikon I would suggest you stay Nikon all the way, lens and flashes if you need them. I just purchased 2 Nikon SB900 flashes and they are great. No wires no separate transmitters no receivers for off camera operation. Everything is set from and controlled by the D300.
You can't go wrong either way so good luck and let us know what you decide on.

PS: Pix is correct, be weary of cheap web prices, I also use B&H Photo when I can't find it local.


Nikon D300, D3s, Nikon 10.5 lens, RingT105N+Footplate+MrotatorTCPs, Giottos MT9261 Tripod, Manfrotto 410 Jr geared head.

If you know the "secret" then everyday is a good day!
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2009-01-02
#8

Hello Lee,

Mate, I'm not bias one way or another on brands. The Canon and Nikon models you are considering are both fantastic cameras. Currently I own a Canon 5D (soon to be upgraded to the new MKII) and a Nikon D300. For me the Canon is excellent with it's full size sensor and when used with the Canon 15mm f/2.8 fisheye it yields very nice results. The Nikon D300 is without doubt the best small sensor DSLR ever made to date and when mated to the Nikkor 10.5mm f/2.8 fisheye it is hard to beat. 

That said, the trusty Sigma 8mm f/3.5 Fisheye works extremely well on either camera and is well respected.

It comes down to how many images you can live with when it comes to shooting panos. You basically will need to decide between 4+ or 6+T minimum unless you get a full size sensor camera and then you can shoot as little as 3 shots with the Sigma 8mm Fisheye.

Don't let Pixel or Jerry undersell their results either they have improved leaps and bounds and should be well proud of their work.

OK clean slate, If I had to start fresh and go shopping today I would purchase Hmm,......

Full Size Sensor: I would love a Canon 5D MKII and Canon 15mm f/2.8 Fisheye but it would be a hard toss up between that and a Nikon D700 and Nikkor 16mm f/2.8 Fisheye. Fact is, I would be happy with either!

APS-C/DX Sensor: I would buy the Nikon D300 over the Canon 40D, But I would buy a 40D over a 50D. So if was to go the Nikon you have to have the Nikkor 10.5mm f/2.8 Fisheye because it is a great lens. (Read the D300 conclusion on DPReview)

Budget Buying: Easy, Canon 450D/RebelXSi with Sigma 8mm f/3.5 Fisheye no risk! I wouldn't buy below the D300 in Nikon (Maybe D90) and I wouldn't buy the Canon 1000D because the 450D is not that much more and a far superior camera.

Bottom line, buy the best you can afford and really whatever that is it will be quite capable of great panoramas far exceeding the quality you get from any One-Shot mirror.

Regards, Smooth

 


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2009-01-02
#9

All you guys are great!!! Thanks for the wealth of information . I am a firm believer in "not re-inventing" the wheel.

A knowledgebase is nothing without those who share and you ALL are wonderful in the sharing, caring and mentoring department.

That is a true sign of character, professionalism, and security in your selves.

I know this is just the beggining. Once I get the equipment then the fun will begin. I have decided to go with the following (budgetary reason)

Canon EOS Rebel XSi EF-S 18-55IS Kit

Sigma Fisheye 8mm f/3.5 EX DG Circular Fisheye

Manfrotto 322RC2

Manfrotto 055XPROB

Agnos TCP

 

Am I missing anything???

 

Only question left is Panoweaver, that is the stiching software correct? I presently have TW 4.0 Pro and have inquired about the upgrade to Studio 2008 from Easypano.

 

I think I'll be ready to "Tour it up" with clarity 

 

Regards,

 

Lee

 

 

 


Lee Scott - Nikon D3/D300/D5000 - |shaved Nikkor 10.5 mm| Manfrotto 055XPROB tripod /322RC2 Grip - Mrotator TCS |CS5 | PW7 & TW6.5 Pro
----
To err is human ... to not try is just plain lazy
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2009-01-02
#10
The only thing I'm not sure about in your selection is the Agnos TCP. Not sure if you need the TCP or TCPshort. Need to confirm that before you purchase.
If you contact Agnos before you order they will set you straight. Great folks at Agnos. "Mention Smooth and they will give you a discount" I believe mine was 10% which paid for the shipping. Just tell them Smooth recommended them and ask for the discount in your correspondence BEFORE you order. That will help the budget!!!!!!!
Nikon D300, D3s, Nikon 10.5 lens, RingT105N+Footplate+MrotatorTCPs, Giottos MT9261 Tripod, Manfrotto 410 Jr geared head.

If you know the "secret" then everyday is a good day!
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2009-01-02
#11

Lee,

That set up will be a very good system for the money and very capable. Yes, as Jerry started drop my name "Smooth" when ordering from Agnos it could just save you a few bucks! I would think you would require the Agnos TCPs as the TCP is the same thing only larger for those using longer zoom style lenses - this is something you will need to make a decision on yourself and what suits your needs.

I have a Manfrotto 055XPROB tripod and although it's not my favourite it is very good and the horizontal arm is handy at times. Personally I love my Velbon Sherpa it has served me very well for the last 7 years or so.

Panoweaver is Easypano's stitching software. You will use "Drum" mode for stitching your images from this combination and your will require 4 shots in rotation @ 90 degrees and you might add an up/zenith - down/nadir shot to this if required.

The trick with this set up is to slightly tilt the lens up around 5 degrees and it will close the zenith hole. Now, at the same time time it will open the nadir hole the same amount but because this will have the tripod in view it doesn't matter because you will need to cap/clone or heal this area anyway.

Anyway, sounds like you have your shopping list and in no time now you will be showing us the fabulous results.

Regards, Smooth