When was the last time you updated your camera? It’s ok to admit you’re still using a film camera or relying on an ancient point and shoot. I was for the longest time. I then bought a low end point and shot 2 Christmases ago, thinking it might be enough but then last summer I really discovered I needed and wanted more. I wanted a DSLR. I wanted to get back into photography like I was doing it when I was younger.
I had gotten away from something I loved to do, and I was so tired of having not so great photos to remember my life by. I needed better. For me there where several things to think about:
DSLR or Point and Shoot?
There are two major distinctions when it comes to buying a digital camera; DSLR and point and shoot. DSLR models offer many more options to users from settings to shutter speed, interchangeable lenses, and on screen functionality. Point and shoot cameras work best when shooting in fully automatic mode. With a DSLR you find yourself over time becoming more comfortable changing your setting and playing with your camera. I know I did especially after taking a photo workshop while at Blissdom Canada.
Before You Go to the Store, Know what You Need:
Before buying here are some questions you should ask yourself;
- What will I primarily be using the camera for?
- What is my budget?
- How long do I expect to use this camera?
- What functions are important to me?
- Will I use my images mostly digitally or do I plan to print them out as well?
- Will I be using the camera around home or will I be using it while traveling?
- Am I willing to spend additional money on maintenance costs?
If your primary use for a new camera is to shoot pictures of your family that will be added to your scrapbook or shared on Facebook then purchasing a point and shoot camera may be all you need. They’re very easy to use straight out of the box. The resolution quality and speed won’t be as good as with a DSLR. Many point and shoots also rely on a viewfinder screen to take the image instead of a traditional eye viewfinder. However, they are lighter, take up less space, and may be a better option if you plan to travel and take pictures. I thought my point and shoot did a good job but I needed and wanted more.
If however you plan to take images that you may want to print or use in a more professional capacity then a DSLR is worth the investment. You’ll be able to capture pictures with a better resolution and you can control more aspects of how the picture appears. This is especially important if you want to print pictures. In some cases images from point and shoots are too low to render a high quality image. If you really love photography it also may make sense to save up and buy a DSLR along with a few lessons on how to make it work for you. You can also find lots of tutorials online and YouTube videos that will take you from a novice photographer to a skilled photog in no time! Whichever you choose, don’t forget to buy an additional memory cards to store pictures and case to keep your camera safe.
Know what works best for you and your family. I know for me I now love having my Nikon DSLR. It is my new best friend and I am enjoying getting to know it and that old love of photograpy is definitely coming back.