As you browse websites on digital cameras you will see recommendations and reasons why you should buy a particular camera. It’s confusing and can be very discouraging. Why? Because this is a new hobby and by the fact that it is new, you really don’t know what to do. Let’s take a look at how to choose the right digital camera for you.
This may sound a little different to the average recommendation and definitely won’t make the camera sales assistant happy. They’ll always try to sell the camera with the most features at the highest possible price you can afford, or, maybe can’t afford. It’s economics to them. Very few sales people will sell you what you need. And most first time buyers don’t really know what they need.
So here’s the bottom line. As a beginner you have no idea which camera you need or what features you require beyond the basics. Should you get a compact, a prosumer or an SLR? Should it be an entry level SLR, a semi-pro or a full on professional camera? All these questions can be answered but mostly not when you are buying your first camera.
Here’s the simple answer. The camera you need to buy is the one that is going to allow you to take photos without spending a lot of money. A simple entry level camera that can take photos is the only requirement. You emphasis should be on learning photography.
At this stage of a beginner’s photography journey you are not going to know what you need and what features you require. You are going to learn photography by experimenting and trying out the ideas you may have. Only once you have an understanding of the fundamentals of photography, a knowledge of your particular camera and an idea of what type of photography you like, will you be able to make an informed decision.
You may want to continue just taking snapshots of family occasions and the odd action photo at the kids school. On the other hand you might be so inspired that you want to immediately buy a mid-range DSLR and work towards becoming a professional photographer. Spending a lot of money on your initial purpose which may not suit your needs is not advised. That money should be spent on the camera that is right for your particular needs.
Here are three questions to ask yourself when looking to make that initial purchase.
1. How serious am I about photography?
If this is a whim or passing fancy acknowledge it, and spend your money accordingly. If you have dreamed about this time all your life and really want to get serious about your photography then spend according to your budget. Don’t spend more than you need to and wait until you understand what your future requirements will be.
2. What do I want to achieve from my photography?
Do you want to enjoy it as a hobby, gain enough ability to sell your images to finance your hobby or do you want to become a professional photographer? Knowing this will enable you to head in the right direction and help you make your final camera decision.
3. How much money am I prepared to waste if photography is not for me?
I have said this before but it is important enough to repeat. Knowing your financial limits will help determine what you entry level purchase will be. Don’t spend more than you can afford to waste. It may put you off photography for life.
What you need to understand is that you must not be pushed into making a decision on any digital camera. Take you time and don’t spend more than you can afford . Concentrate on taking photos with your first camera and get to know your needs in order to make the best possible purchase on your second camera. Photography should be fun and never a financial burden.