With a diverse range of cameras currently on the market, and frequent releases of new models, the range of choices can be seemingly overwhelming to people without much experience of photography.
Consequently, many people are unsure of where to start their search for a digital camera or what they really need.
Is a Digital Single Lens Reflex Camera Best?
Typically, people wonder whether they should buy the camera that allows them to take the photographs with the most pixels. Others contemplate buying the least expensive model of camera. And some people are uncertain as to whether they should plump for a small, easy to carry compact camera or one of the more professional looking digital Single Lens Reflex (SLR) cameras.
Considerations Before Buying a Digital Camera
There are indeed a number of important issues that people should think about before buying a camera. By considering the following questions, people should then be able to come up with answers that help them focus on what they need, and, as a result, will be able to purchase the camera best suited to them:
- What kind of photography does the buyer wish to follow?
Photography is a broad field with many specialisations. These include sports photography, wedding photography, underwater photography and editorial photography. Photographers need to acquire equipment relevant to their field of specialisation.
Equipment For Sports Photography
Sports photographers, for example, are likely to need a camera that can take photos at the rate of several frames per second – so that they can be sure of capturing the action during key moments of a contest – plus a long telephoto lens, so that they can capture details of action taking place several metres distant.
Beginners who are serious about starting photography might find that buying a decent digital SLR camera is a good starting point. Additional lenses can be purchased at a later point, allowing the photographer to buy additional kit and follow a specific interest once they have gained a grounding photography’s basics.
- What kind of budget does the photographer have available to spend?
Ultimately, the buyer will get what they pay for. Precision lenses and high specification equipment usually cost much more than cameras and lenses of a lower quality; top of the range professional gear costs more than equipment aimed at the hobbyist sector of the market because, ultimately, it is better.
But is it better for everyone? There is little point in a beginner spending a small fortune on equipment and technology that they are not going to use or feel the benefit from. A lower spec camera may be better for a novice to experiment with.
Used equipment can bought from second hand shops or via the internet. This is often a low cost option which allows newcomers to learn about photography without breaking the bank.
- What does the photographer want to do with the photographs that they make using the camera?
If the photographs made with the camera are simply for fun and likely to be circulated to friends via email or over websites such as Facebook, then the camera does not need to have a great lens, a huge sensor nor do the photos need to be taken with the highest possible resolution.
Megapixels And Digital Photography
If the photographer does not need photos which are any larger than, say, a typical monitor, then spending lots of money on a camera with an 18 megapixel resolution would be unnecessary.
However, if the photographer aims at using the photos for their business then they may need photos that can be printed at a high resolution in brochures. It pays to consider such uses ahead of purchasing the camera.
- How serious is the photographer about photography?
If the person using the camera wants to snap friends at parties or on vacation but is not interested in pursuing photography as a hobby or professionally, then an easy-to-use compact camera is likely to meet their needs. A bulkier digital SLR, which would allow the user to change lenses and give greater control over how the final image looks, is likely to be overkill in such cases.
However, if the photographer is keen to learn about photography and wants to maximise their control over the image, then a digital SLR may well be a good investment.
Market Research Before Buying a Camera
Checking photography magazines and websites allows a potential buyer to compare camera specifications, reviews and prices. Investing a few hours in market research is time well spent by buyers, as it gives them a feel for what is out there. Careful consideration will help a buyer narrow down the options in order to find products that suit their needs within their budget.