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Lori Grunin, CNET editor for for digital imaging, Live!

by Lee Koo (ADMIN) CNET staff/forum admin / July 10, 2007 8:40 AM PDT

Ask the Editors Live!

Digital SLR camera live chat event with CNET senior editor Lori Grunin starts Thursday July 19th at 11 a.m. to noon Pacific / 2 p.m to 3 p.m Eastern. Where Lori, will be answering your questions about digital SLRs cameras from buying advice to raw-file minutiae and more. See you at the event!

Check out the Ask the Editors Live event calendar for upcoming events and past transcripts of events:

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I'm here, ask away
by lgrunin CNET staff / July 19, 2007 3:54 AM PDT

But be gentle with me. How about starting with some softballs? Happy

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Best All-around lens for Canon 30D
by abone999 / July 19, 2007 4:00 AM PDT

Hi Laurie,

What would you consider the best all-around lens for my camera, a Canon 30D? I know one lens can't "do it all" but what would you recommend?


Alan Bone

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Always a toughie
by lgrunin CNET staff / July 19, 2007 4:02 AM PDT

That really depends on what you like to shoot. Some people rely on a good "prime" lens--say, a 50mm--but I know I'd be lost without a flexible zoom. The 18mm-55mm I find to be a good, all-around option.

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Battery for flash
by kajitoj / July 19, 2007 4:01 AM PDT

What are the best batteries for a flash..
I have a D50 with a sb-600 flash..
Seems like the flash loose power to early.

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AA lithiums
by lgrunin CNET staff / July 19, 2007 4:03 AM PDT
In reply to: Battery for flash

Whenever possible, I use the Energizer e^2 AA lithium batteries for flash. They last longer and provide some noticeable extra oomph on the recycle times. Still, I find the flash has problems keeping up with me Happy

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by shroadster / July 19, 2007 4:02 AM PDT

Hi Lori,

I just got a Sony DSC-T100, and I've taken a bunch of pictures with it to test it out. I noticed when I look at them on my computer at 100%, they are very distorted and unclear. However when I zoom out a bit, they look fine. Is this normal?

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not about dSLR
by lgrunin CNET staff / July 19, 2007 4:04 AM PDT
In reply to: DSC-T100

but yes, that's normal.

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18-200 for nikon
by Kingp1n / July 19, 2007 4:03 AM PDT

Is the Nikkor 18-200 VR worth the premium price (assuming you can find one)? Or would the 18-200 from Tamron suffice?

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off the top of my head...
by lgrunin CNET staff / July 19, 2007 4:05 AM PDT
In reply to: 18-200 for nikon

I don't know the prices of the respective lenses--I can look them up and get back--but I'd probably pay at least a 50-75% premium for the Nikkor. The VR is certainly worth it.

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Compact cameras
by DuckInA.Pond / July 19, 2007 4:03 AM PDT

Whats the best choice if you want a small, compact camera that doesn't cost a lot and performs well?

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I assume you mean a compact dSLR...
by lgrunin CNET staff / July 19, 2007 4:07 AM PDT
In reply to: Compact cameras

The most compact you can find is the Olympus E-410. The price is right but it's got some exposure problems. I'd probably go a little bigger to the Rebel XTi. Not extremely compact, but very light.

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Nikon 18-200 lens
by best4less / July 19, 2007 4:06 AM PDT

I am thinking to buy one... Can you come up a couple of reasons for NOT buying a Nikon 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 G ED-IF AF-S VR lens for a Nikon D80? Thanks.

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No, I can't think of any reason not to.
by lgrunin CNET staff / July 19, 2007 4:19 AM PDT
In reply to: Nikon 18-200 lens

Unless you need something with a wider aperture. I'm not sure what you're planning on shooting, and f/3.5-5.6 can be a little slow for some things.

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18-200 follow up
by Kingp1n / July 19, 2007 4:07 AM PDT

The Nikkor; if you can find one, retails at $750. Ebay around $850. Tamron is $360.

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Unless you're absolutely budget constrained.
by lgrunin CNET staff / July 19, 2007 4:08 AM PDT
In reply to: 18-200 follow up

I'd go for the Nikkor. I think you'd appreciate the extra latitude from the VR, and the photos will probably be sharper.

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blurry pics
by FatFu / July 19, 2007 4:08 AM PDT

Hello, when I turn the flash off on my camera, the pictures seems to be always blurry. Is there a reason why its like that only when the flash is not on? What can I do to prevent this from happening?

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Flash freezes the action
by lgrunin CNET staff / July 19, 2007 4:10 AM PDT
In reply to: blurry pics

And throws everything into high-contrast relief. The result is higher apparent sharpness. It's a fact of light. You're only options for improving the sharpness of the rest of the photos are higher shutter speed and controlling your breathing to minimize even the smallest camera movements.

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looking to upgrade
by geneaure / July 19, 2007 4:09 AM PDT

I currently have a Nikon D70 I have had this camera for for 3 years now and I am looking on upgrading. I orginally bought this camera to take vacation pictures and similar things. I've recently started taking professional product shots and have considered upgrading. Do you think its necessary.

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For product shots, the D70
by lgrunin CNET staff / July 19, 2007 4:11 AM PDT
In reply to: looking to upgrade
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dSLR for Sports Photos
by DFringer / July 19, 2007 4:10 AM PDT

My son plays soccer and I have been looking for a dSLR to take photos from the sidelines.

What features should I rank highest, can't do without?

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That's not a feature issue--
by lgrunin CNET staff / July 19, 2007 4:12 AM PDT
In reply to: dSLR for Sports Photos's a performance issue. I'd say you want a camera that can shoot at least 3fps, but you'd have to check our (and other sites) performance test results to make sure the camera actually hits its rated numbers at the best-quality settings.

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18-200 last follow up question...
by Kingp1n / July 19, 2007 4:12 AM PDT

Thanks for the 18-200 answer. Now let me pose this. Insted of spending $750 on a all-in-one 18-200 VR lense, what about use the 18-55 lense that came with my D50 and buying the new Nikkor 55-200 VR for $250?

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That sounds good as well
by lgrunin CNET staff / July 19, 2007 4:14 AM PDT

I generally like to carry a medium zoom and a long zoom lens with me rather than a single all-purpose. Splitting the zoom range should also (theoretically) result in better photo quality. You're not forcing the optical system to its limits.

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(NT) Thank you very much!
by Kingp1n / July 19, 2007 4:15 AM PDT
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Since no other questions are being posted....
by Kingp1n / July 19, 2007 4:18 AM PDT

Is the possibility of getting dust on the sensor by changing lenses a big concern?

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Yes and no
by lgrunin CNET staff / July 19, 2007 4:21 AM PDT

If you switch lenses frequently, or shoot in debris-loaded locations (deserts, polluted cities), then it's a valid worry. It's certainly a worry for professionals, who swap lenses constantly. But if you're a typical user who swaps lenses only now and then, and you're careful not to leave the innards exposed, then it shouldn't arise within the lifespan of your camera.

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What is good starter dSLR?
by sbaxter / July 19, 2007 4:21 AM PDT

I'm mostly looking to take photo of my kids in action.

I've been looking at a Nikon D40 but there are 2 different ones. One is a 6MP and the other is a 10MP -- Is 6MP enough?


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6mp is more than enough
by lgrunin CNET staff / July 19, 2007 4:23 AM PDT

unless you plan on printing some *really* big shots of your kids. But if you're just looking for a step-up from a snapshot camera, 6mp is fine.

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Video camera on the go
by nickswim / July 19, 2007 4:22 AM PDT

What is the best video camera that give the best audio & video quality that also has the features of a digital camera?
The Sanyo Xachti series?
I will be using it for video blogs.

Nick Schmidt

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You may want to opt for
by lgrunin CNET staff / July 19, 2007 4:56 AM PDT
In reply to: Video camera on the go

a good still camera that shoots standard 640x480 30fps videos, like the Canon PowerShot S5 IS. It has stereo audio with separated mics, and it shoots MJPEG video (saved as an AVI) that's pretty good.

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