A digital camera is something that will change the way people perceive photography! And that’s why we are so careful about the first digital camera. Whether you’re an amateur photographer looking for an upgrade or a professional just starting to enter the world of digital photography, you are investing your hard-earned cash in a new camera.
Let me tell you my story……..
As somebody who has always been a photography fan, I was excited when searching for my first digital camera. Options were endless. And I was so into the myth that you must break your bank to find a good camera on your budget.
But after spending decades in the world of photography, I realize you can have a decent camera without spending a ton of money if you know how to pick the right one. Today I come up with the top 10 Things to Consider Before Buying a Digital Camera.
What Main 3 Features to be Considered When Purchasing a Digital Camera?
But first, let’s see what a is. But what is the digital camera?
It is a smart device that Records and Captures pictures, videos, and other images using a sensor. The machines are made to record images on a CompactFlash or SD card.
You are probably seeing Digital cameras becoming more and more popular, as they offer a higher quality of pictures and videos than traditional cameras. Ever wonder why people are rushing to buy a digital one instead of an analog camera? These cameras have become easier to use and manage.
Now let’s see the top 3 things you cannot compromise on purchasing a new camera.
#1 Know Your Requirement first!
Before making a buying decision, ask yourself the below questions,
- Where to use the digital camera?
- Will you do animal photography or wedding photography?
- Will you carry your camera for a whole day?
- What is your budget?
Answers to these questions will assist in choosing a digital camera for your specific needs. Set your budget and look for a camera that falls under your budget.
You probably heard the terms a lot. But do you know what exactly this means?
Well, a sensor is a component of the camera that gathers light and converts it into an electronic signal. These signals are then sent to the camera’s processor, where they’re used to process and store images. For a digital camera to take pictures, its sensor must detect light.
I was wondering why the heck it’s so important.
The size, shape, and composition of a digital camera’s sensor are all important factors in determining its performance. For example, a small sensor will generally produce poorer photos than a larger one because it’ll have more trouble handling light. Other factors that can affect a camera’s sensor include the type of lens that’s being used and the quality of photography software that’s being used.
The image quality will be much better with a bigger sensor size.
Big sensors are expensive. Due to this reason, professional photographers use big sensors. Four third sensor is the best option to choose if your main goal is to take clear and sharp images.
Types of the camera
Think about what you want your camera to do and choose the type accordingly.
Digital cameras are 3 types: DSLR, mirrorless, and compact. DSLR digital cameras are versatile and suitable for almost every condition. Happily, some DSLR models have video capturing capability, allowing you to capture HD-quality videos. Moreover, DSLRs are compatible with a wide range of lenses, allowing you to be creative.
Mirrorless is a newer digital camera that will give you the same capability of capturing an image as a DSLR. But the difference is that mirrorless cameras are compact and perform quietly, making them popular with street photographers.
Compact digital cameras are small and lightweight, as their name suggests. They are also known as “point-and-shoot” cameras. These cameras are great for on-the-go people as you can easily carry them in your pocket or purse.
What Are Other 7 Factors Important in Choosing What Camera to Buy?
Before selecting a digital camera, you must consider different considerations like MegaPixel, zoom capability, image quality, etc. But some other factors need to be taken into mind.
Lens- Prime lens or zoom lens?
Interchangeable lenses are the main player here. But the main question is which one to choose between a prime lens and a zoom lens. Pro photographers always say- Fixed focal length is the main character of the prime lens.
Can this be true?
These lenses are generally cheaper and lightweight. It would be best if you came closer to your subject to capture images with a prime lens. Meanwhile, the zoom lens has several focal lengths. While capturing images with a zoom lens, moving your body is unnecessary.
Durability and Warranty
Electronics items can malfunction at any time. That’s the harsh truth. But to avoid the worst situation, check for the warranty of your selected digital camera model. The good news is that almost all officially purchased cameras offer a minimum of a 1-year warranty, covering manufacturing defects.
Solid construction will also let you understand that the camera will give you many years of service. However, durability may not be important to take all your photos indoors.
Speed and Performance
No one can deny that Digital cameras are becoming increasingly popular mainly due to their high speed and performance. By taking advantage of digital technology, photographers can take greater photos and videos faster than ever before. So the rate is closely related to high performance.
Digital cameras offer many other advantages, such as the ability to upload photos and videos wirelessly, which makes transferring images and videos easy and quick. Frames per second should be your biggest concern when capturing sports and wildlife photos.
Believe me or not, ISO is one of the 3 main pillars of photography. But the problem is very few digital cameras can take photos at high ISO settings such as ISO 3200/6400. And interestingly, these cameras don’t create noise in the image when high ISO is used.
Suppose you prefer capturing images in low-light conditions (and have a decent budget). In that case, you should go for High-ISO capability is helpful Check the specification sheet or customer reviews to learn about a camera’s ISO.
Autofocus and Drive Speed
Are you fond of wildlife and animal photography? Then it’s a must for you.
High drive speed and advanced autofocus technology featured cameras will be beneficial. Other features like 10+ fps (frames per second), animal eye AF, deep buffer, etc., will take your photography skill to the next level.
Camera shaking is quite common when taking images. In this situation, image stabilization will help you minimize camera shake. Modern digital cameras are equipped with lens and body image stabilization options.
RAW & JPEG
Almost anything supports JPEG images. You can easily share your JPEG capture on social media, printing, or emailing without hassle. On the other hand, RAW images are necessary to process photos using different software like Photoshop or Lightroom.
What Camera Should I Buy if I’m a Beginner?
A digital camera is a great option for someone who is just given the first baby steps in photography.
Here is why:
Beginners usually make a lot of mistakes. If they are in the same boat and unaware of what factors to consider while purchasing a brand new digital camera, here are a few factors to look for.
Pre-programmed Scene Mood
As a beginner, you may find capturing photos in different light conditions difficult. In this case, pre-programmed scene moods could be your life-saver. It’s great for adjusting everything automatically. With this feature, you can do the below photography,
- Night photography
- Portrait photography
- Fireworks photography
- Sports events
- Indoors, etc.
This mood will help a beginner take better-quality images until they learn to capture photos in manual mode.
Don’t Go with the Low Price
Some retailers use the “low price” tag as bait and attract beginners as they know beginners prefer low-priced products.
Could you stay away from them?
It would always be best to buy a camera from a reputed brand or trustworthy source.
They will not betray you when a problem arises with the purchase. However, that doesn’t mean affordable items are always bad. Ensure that the product has the top features that you need.
Ergonomics and Handling
For beginners, easy operating and handling is a must. Some cameras are designed with helpful features like touch functionality, autofocus joysticks, complete articular screen, etc. These features permit a beginner to operate them conveniently.
Carefully look at the specification list. If the camera has the feature that you require desperately, shortlist it.
Below is a list of other features for a beginner’s digital camera,
- RAW file support
- Incorporated flash
- Video capability
- Wireless connectivity
- Battery life
- Image capturing modes
- External flash compatibility
- External microphone compatibility
How Many Megapixels is Good for a Camera?
Does Higher MP Mean Better Camera Most people think that MegaPixel or MP is everything for a digital camera. But this is not true at all.
I suggest you not join the MP race.
Salesmen will tell you that more MP is better. They are not telling a lie. Indeed, a digital camera with more MegaPixel will give you clearer and better photos than other cameras.
Below are 2 causes why you must avoid joining the MegaPixel race,
- You will not get an equally clearer picture, according to the MP. Consider the number also along with the MegaPixel quality. Let’s say most image sensor pixels can identify specific areas of greenness, blueness, or redness. The sensor pixels are unable to detect all three together. For this reason, most of the time, adjusting the photo’s warmth is necessary. Maybe your image doesn’t have enough redness, and it requires adjustment. The latest technology, like a 3-layer sensor, can detect each color separately, giving you sharper, clearer, warmer images.
- It would always be best to consider other features with MegaPixel. Shutter speed is another essential consideration. This will assist you in sports or night photography. You can take pictures indoors, like home, office, and gym, and name a few, taking assistance from the manual white-balance function. Additionally, the pre-programmed mode is helpful in different light conditions.
Higher MegaPixel has a few drawbacks.
You will get unclear and noisy images under low light. The reason is that more MP minimizes ISO capabilities. Moreover, photos with higher MP will increase your image file size. Thus, your computer hard drive or camera memory card will fill up quickly, letting you capture fewer images.
So, before buying a digital camera with a high MegaPixel, ask yourself: is that much MegaPixel required for you?
How Much Should a Beginner Spend on a Camera?
Budget is always a crucial factor. Before deciding on a digital camera model, fix your budget. Remember that digital cameras come in different price ranges. Moreover, the price of a camera depends on several factors like MP, lens, performance, features, etc.
A good quality camera will cost you $500 minimum. While $750 is a desirable price range, $1000 would be great if you want to take high-quality images. I believe a narrow price range will be great for sure. You will be overwhelmed with your choice if you decide to go with a $1000 camera. But your choice can be easily manageable if you fix your budget between $800 – $1000.
Keep in mind……..
A digital camera requires accessories like the lens, camera bag, hood, external flash, memory cards, additional battery, etc., so keep some extra penny for this. List down what other camera gears you need based on your photography style.
So, don’t spend all your money buying the camera body.
It is always better to know your priority before buying a camera. This way, you will ensure that your selected product is worth the price.
A simple point-and-shoot camera will work fine if you want to take pictures of family events or capture memories of special occasions. Consider a digital SLR (single lens reflex) camera if you’re looking for something more sophisticated. These cameras have interchangeable lenses and allow you to take amazing photos and videos. However, they can be more difficult to use and require more manual effort than a point-and-shoot camera.
Another thing I want to mention………
There is a misconception that the latest cameras are the greatest. In reality, you can take high-quality images using all modern digital cameras. But if you choose a camera with modern technology, you have to spend more money for sure.