Cameras Needed - Hempstead, TX
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Old 04-19-2018   #1
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Default Cameras Needed - Hempstead, TX

I wasn't sure where to post this so admins feel free to move it to an appropriate spot.

I'm in the process of putting together a basic photography class at my parish in Hempstead, Tx for some of our teenage parishioners.

As they fall into a low economic class financially they won't be able to fund a camera for themselves.

So, I was wondering, if there is any person(s) in the Houston/Cypress or Waller area that might have an old DSLR gathering dust in a closet that might be willing to donate it and put it to good use.

Charity donation slips can be issued if required. P.M. me if you can help.

Thank you.

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Old 04-19-2018   #2
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Default Re: Cameras Needed - Hempstead, TX

If you really need dSLRs, you will almost certainly also need lenses to fit them as well. Old "kit" and other cheap lenses may be easy enough to get, if you can find people not using them. For your beginners and beginning intermediate photographers, it might be easier to get old "bridge" cameras, but you might also need old memory cards too because many old cameras simply can't handle the newer, high-capacity cards. You may (or may not) also run into this problem with old dSLRs as well. You also need to check the batteries to see if they are also in shape and that you have compatible chargers for all of them.
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Old 04-20-2018   #3
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Default Re: Cameras Needed - Hempstead, TX

Quote:
Originally Posted by scoundrel1728 View Post
If you really need dSLRs, you will almost certainly also need lenses to fit them as well. Old "kit" and other cheap lenses may be easy enough to get, if you can find people not using them. For your beginners and beginning intermediate photographers, it might be easier to get old "bridge" cameras, but you might also need old memory cards too because many old cameras simply can't handle the newer, high-capacity cards. You may (or may not) also run into this problem with old dSLRs as well. You also need to check the batteries to see if they are also in shape and that you have compatible chargers for all of them.
Yes, thank you.
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Old 04-27-2018   #4
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Default Re: Cameras Needed - Hempstead, TX

How many students per class?

Why digital cameras? Why not film cameras?

Why dSLR cameras? Why not digital compact cameras?

Why not cell phones?
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Old 04-28-2018   #5
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Default Re: Cameras Needed - Hempstead, TX

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How many students per class?

Why digital cameras? Why not film cameras?

Why dSLR cameras? Why not digital compact cameras?

Why not cell phones?
I am not the OP, but I did start a class something like this once under a local church. The computers were fairly easy to get, as I recall, but digital cameras were still fairly expensive back then, especially cameras with manual adjustments. The church, which was in charge of procuring the equipment, managed to find and buy four new "no-name" cameras with manual adjustments for a price that was in the two figures for each camera. This was enough so that two students could share a camera. The cameras were nether very sturdy nor produced particularly good images, though they were passable when viewed on screen, for the most part. However, at maximum ISO 1600, the noise suppression artifacts were so obvious that they showed up easily even in images for display on the web and weren't even of passable quality. By the end of the summer, one of them had broken - the battery door had broken or some such thing; I don't remember the exact failure any longer. Some of the students did have cell phones or their own cameras but the church did not want the students to use their own equipment. Not quite sure for the rationale behind that, but that was their decision. There was no money for software and I didn't want to pirate anything, and of course neither did the church, so we used IrfanView - not really an image editor so much as a viewer with some global editing features.

I don't know how many students the OP is expecting or allowing in his classes, how long the course lasts nor how frequently it met, or what kind of external financial, supervisory, or other help and support he has lined up. In my case, the classes were in the context of a church camp that lasted five days for each student, for each day, something like a 1-2 hour session in the morning, followed by a break for lunch and another hour or so in the afternoon. During the break, I along with one or two of the counselors unloaded the cameras' images from the morning onto the computers for the afternoon session.

Because this was a summer camp thing, it was more for fun than something that novice photographers, especially children, could be expected to learn any serious stuff about camera technique or the artistic aspects of photography. I might be able to dig up my lesson plans and associated documentation later, but not today.

That, however, does not prevent me from answering some of Narsuitus' questions as I would:

Why digital cameras? Why not film cameras?

I can't answer for the OP, of course, but when I got back into photography in 1999 after a hiatus of a couple of decades, my old camera had become unreliable, so I needed - not just wanted - a new camera, and carefully the financial implications of digital versus film. Even back then, when the purchase price of digital equipment was much higher than film, I figured that I would reach the break-even point somewhere about the 2-3000-exposure mark, which I expected to take several years. In practice, I reached that point about the time my one-year warranty expired on my Coolpix 950.

Today, the economics favors digital photography even more, not to mention some of the other advantages that digital photography has over film. Among the advantages that would appeal to photography students would be the instant feedback of seeing the image on the screen. My Coolpix 950 didn't have a histogram feature, so I couldn't really tell whether my image was exposed right until I offloaded it to a computer, and I underexposed a lot of images as a result that looked OK on screen. These days, with a histogram and highlight blinkies, that happens a lot less often. Although focusing errors and motion blur can also be difficult to see on some models even with screen magnification, the egregious cases can still be spotted and reshot while still on the scene. Ditto with lighting and composition errors, but these don't even require magnification to see. Correcting these errors also has a small cost in time, but nothing like the cost with film. The marginal cost per exposure is so small that it might as well be considered nonexistent. The EXIF header also records automatically a lot of information about camera settings and conditions that even the most conscientious note-taker could not hope to duplicate without some mechanized help. The point is that the feedback speed and detail, hence the learning process, can be speeded up greatly in comparison to using film.

Why dSLR cameras? Why not digital compact cameras?

At least for beginners, I would go for digital compact and "bridge" cameras myself because they are a lot less expensive and require less commitment to a particular digital system than dSLRs - unless you can support the expense of multiple digital systems, which I can't. These can be had with manual focus capability, "hooks" for external flashes, manual shutter and aperture adjustments, mounts or adapters for filters and other lens attachments, and the image quality is more than adequate. Perhaps a dSLR is in the beginning photographer's future; nevertheless, if the first camera is chosen well enough, it can serve the photographer well into intermediate level before its limitations require another camera to supplement or supplant it.

Why not cell phones?

Although the image quality of today's cell phones is more than okay for "average" photographic conditions, most are incurably auto-everything and don't have the manual overrides that bridge cameras and dSLRs do. Certain models allow magnetic stick-on focal length adapters, but I have yet to see one with an adapter for filters or a tripod socket for long exposures. They also come with built-in distractions - they are, after all, phones and internet devices as well as cameras.

I am one of the dinosaurs that still has a flip-type phone that doesn't have internet capability and use it only as a phone, but even mine comes with a bill each month for its use. I don't know if such a phone can be used only as a camera without incurring a monthly charge, but I don't see how to transfer the images from the phone otherwise. Unless the students already have the cell phones, I wouldn't even consider them as a suitable tool for a photography class. I definitely wouldn't supply them.
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Old 04-29-2018   #6
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Default Re: Cameras Needed - Hempstead, TX

Let me reiterate, this is a group of low income students that don't have the resources to buy film and/or build a darkroom to process the film or send it out to be processed. I'm trying to teach them the basics of photography utilizing any digital DSLR's that are available.
I don't utilize a cell phone as a camera so I don't really possess the knowledge to teach them how to use it.
I'm just looking for donations of any DSLR's that may be gathering dust in someone's closet.
For me and them, it's the easiest method to gain access to a wonderful hobby or career.

If you are in the Houston area and can help please do, it will mean a lot to these kids.
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Old 04-30-2018   #7
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Default Re: Cameras Needed - Hempstead, TX

I'm not in the Houston area but I have the following stuff that has been sitting in a box that I can send to you if any of it can be useful. Nikon Nikkor 70-210 zoom f mount, Minolta digital light meter, 77mm closeup lens (screws into the end of any lens that has a 77mm thread) and a new Nikon strap.

If this can help send me your address via PM and I'll ship it out tomorrow.
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Old 04-30-2018   #8
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Default Re: Cameras Needed - Hempstead, TX

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I'm not in the Houston area but I have the following stuff that has been sitting in a box that I can send to you if any of it can be useful. Nikon Nikkor 70-210 zoom f mount, Minolta digital light meter, 77mm closeup lens (screws into the end of any lens that has a 77mm thread) and a new Nikon strap.

If this can help send me your address via PM and I'll ship it out tomorrow.
Thank you very much for your generosity. If we obtain some cameras I will contact you.
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Old 04-30-2018   #9
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Default Re: Cameras Needed - Hempstead, TX

Quote:
Originally Posted by scoundrel1728 View Post
I am not the OP, but I did start a class something like this once under a local church. The computers were fairly easy to get, as I recall, but digital cameras were still fairly expensive back then, especially cameras with manual adjustments. The church, which was in charge of procuring the equipment, managed to find and buy four new "no-name" cameras with manual adjustments for a price that was in the two figures for each camera. This was enough so that two students could share a camera. The cameras were nether very sturdy nor produced particularly good images, though they were passable when viewed on screen, for the most part. However, at maximum ISO 1600, the noise suppression artifacts were so obvious that they showed up easily even in images for display on the web and weren't even of passable quality. By the end of the summer, one of them had broken - the battery door had broken or some such thing; I don't remember the exact failure any longer. Some of the students did have cell phones or their own cameras but the church did not want the students to use their own equipment. Not quite sure for the rationale behind that, but that was their decision. There was no money for software and I didn't want to pirate anything, and of course neither did the church, so we used IrfanView - not really an image editor so much as a viewer with some global editing features.

I don't know how many students the OP is expecting or allowing in his classes, how long the course lasts nor how frequently it met, or what kind of external financial, supervisory, or other help and support he has lined up. In my case, the classes were in the context of a church camp that lasted five days for each student, for each day, something like a 1-2 hour session in the morning, followed by a break for lunch and another hour or so in the afternoon. During the break, I along with one or two of the counselors unloaded the cameras' images from the morning onto the computers for the afternoon session.

Because this was a summer camp thing, it was more for fun than something that novice photographers, especially children, could be expected to learn any serious stuff about camera technique or the artistic aspects of photography. I might be able to dig up my lesson plans and associated documentation later, but not today.

That, however, does not prevent me from answering some of Narsuitus' questions as I would:

Why digital cameras? Why not film cameras?

I can't answer for the OP, of course, but when I got back into photography in 1999 after a hiatus of a couple of decades, my old camera had become unreliable, so I needed - not just wanted - a new camera, and carefully the financial implications of digital versus film. Even back then, when the purchase price of digital equipment was much higher than film, I figured that I would reach the break-even point somewhere about the 2-3000-exposure mark, which I expected to take several years. In practice, I reached that point about the time my one-year warranty expired on my Coolpix 950.

Today, the economics favors digital photography even more, not to mention some of the other advantages that digital photography has over film. Among the advantages that would appeal to photography students would be the instant feedback of seeing the image on the screen. My Coolpix 950 didn't have a histogram feature, so I couldn't really tell whether my image was exposed right until I offloaded it to a computer, and I underexposed a lot of images as a result that looked OK on screen. These days, with a histogram and highlight blinkies, that happens a lot less often. Although focusing errors and motion blur can also be difficult to see on some models even with screen magnification, the egregious cases can still be spotted and reshot while still on the scene. Ditto with lighting and composition errors, but these don't even require magnification to see. Correcting these errors also has a small cost in time, but nothing like the cost with film. The marginal cost per exposure is so small that it might as well be considered nonexistent. The EXIF header also records automatically a lot of information about camera settings and conditions that even the most conscientious note-taker could not hope to duplicate without some mechanized help. The point is that the feedback speed and detail, hence the learning process, can be speeded up greatly in comparison to using film.

Why dSLR cameras? Why not digital compact cameras?

At least for beginners, I would go for digital compact and "bridge" cameras myself because they are a lot less expensive and require less commitment to a particular digital system than dSLRs - unless you can support the expense of multiple digital systems, which I can't. These can be had with manual focus capability, "hooks" for external flashes, manual shutter and aperture adjustments, mounts or adapters for filters and other lens attachments, and the image quality is more than adequate. Perhaps a dSLR is in the beginning photographer's future; nevertheless, if the first camera is chosen well enough, it can serve the photographer well into intermediate level before its limitations require another camera to supplement or supplant it.

Why not cell phones?

Although the image quality of today's cell phones is more than okay for "average" photographic conditions, most are incurably auto-everything and don't have the manual overrides that bridge cameras and dSLRs do. Certain models allow magnetic stick-on focal length adapters, but I have yet to see one with an adapter for filters or a tripod socket for long exposures. They also come with built-in distractions - they are, after all, phones and internet devices as well as cameras.

I am one of the dinosaurs that still has a flip-type phone that doesn't have internet capability and use it only as a phone, but even mine comes with a bill each month for its use. I don't know if such a phone can be used only as a camera without incurring a monthly charge, but I don't see how to transfer the images from the phone otherwise. Unless the students already have the cell phones, I wouldn't even consider them as a suitable tool for a photography class. I definitely wouldn't supply them.
Thank you Scoundrel
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Old 04-30-2018   #10
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Default Re: Cameras Needed - Hempstead, TX

Quote:
Originally Posted by scoundrel1728 View Post
I don't know if such a phone can be used only as a camera without incurring a monthly charge, but I don't see how to transfer the images from the phone otherwise.
I have an old Galaxy S3 that I use as a camera for inventory. I transfer the photos to computer via USB. I haven't tried linking with WIFI yet because, well, the USB works fine and charges the phone too. That phone has been off AT&T's service for many years.


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