MiniDV camcorders still offer many benefits, not to mention the terrific quality of the video they capture. Sticking with MiniDV is a no-brainer if you already have a lot of time and money invested in the format. B&H still carries the most popular MiniDV models at the best prices you’ll find anywhere.
While there may not ever be a "perfect" lens, there has long been a need for a one-lens solution for shooters who want to head out the door with one camera and one lens over their shoulder. The reasons vary. For some it's a matter of convenience. For some, it's a matter of pure laziness and for others it's the fear of getting dust on the sensor. For frequent flyers it's a matter of logistics, i.e., there's a limit to how much airlines allow you to carry aboard the plane (almost all of these lenses are surprisingly compact).
The interesting thing about entry level point-and-shoot digicams is that the simplest, least expensive of the lot is capable of taking wonderfully sharp, angst-free photographs. The costlier, more "'complicated" digicams can perform more "tricks" or have wider or longer lenses than entry-level digicams, but at the end of the day, each of these econo-cams capture surprisingly fine stills and video.
In the right hands, almost any lens—including a fisheye lens—can be used for portraiture. Wide angle, normal, even super-telephoto lenses can be used successfully for portrait work. But if you had to narrow them down to select an optimal focal length for shooting portraits, it would have to be a lens in the range of 85 to 105mm.
A professional photographer is someone who can take a photograph that's technically and aesthetically right on the money with even the most basic of imaging tools, though few, if any, would bet their reputations on entry-level cameras on a regular basis. That's because as feature-packed as under-$500 cameras are, they're simply not up to taking the pounding pro-quality DSLRs are subjected to on a daily basis. But ruggedness is only part of the equation when it comes to the top guns of DSLR cameras.
Do you have 20/20 vision? If you do, consider yourself lucky. Nothing is stranger than sitting with an optometrist and seeing things more clearly when you thought your vision was fine before you walked in. Your ears are similar. You never know what you’re missing until they have been introduced to a brand new sound perspective.
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