For three years I have been blogging using a Kodak Easy Share. Actually, this was a second-hand, repaired camera. We bought this for our daughter a few Christmases back and she dropped it breaking the lense. We replaced it then Dearest decided to see if it could be fixed. It was a reasonable, easy fix and the camera performed beautifully for years, still does.
But, for a great while, I have been desiring a DSLR – wishing for those clear pictures with the blurry background – for larger images, etc…So I did what probably most of you have done – I did a lot, a lot of research. There are numerous opinions on all the available DLSR cameras – each presenting their virtues. Just Googling DSLR Review resulted in over 45,000,000 results!
You have to decide what brand you’d like – Nikon and Canon are well known brands, but there are also – Sony, Sigma, Polaroid, Fujifilm, a list can be found here.
You begin to realize, there’s also a whole new vocabulary and skill set you need to learn include:
- ISO Ratings – very useful for low light photography
- Maximum Shutter Speed -great feature for action or swiftly moving objects
- LCD Size – size does make a difference in viewing screens
- Burst Mode – ability to shoot several images quickly.
- Anti-Shake – a great help to stabilize photos – can be in camera and in lenses
- Connectivity – getting your pictures from camera to computer or printer
- Shooting Modes – Semi-Auto Modes – just like the point and shoot many DSLR’s come with this feature
- Flashes – built in or separate
- Dust Protection – important feature for lenses and interestingly comes mainly on the ‘lower end’ DSLRs.
Not only can you find volumes of information on the Internet, there are quite a few books available – working at the library I have overloaded myself with this option – to a dizzying effect. Not only that, while working the extra hours I happened to work with a co-worker who was also shopping around for a DSLR camera – she and I compared notes, she looked at Youtube videos and even a Camera magazine – we both concluded there’s so much information to make such a big decision.
So, How did I decide upon my Canon EOS Rebel T3i 18 MP CMOS Digital SLR Camera and DIGIC 4 Imaging with EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS Lens ?
(a mouthful – isn’t it?!)
1. I asked those I knew about their cameras – what they liked, what they wished they knew when they bought their camera.
2. I looked at my short-range and long-range goals
3. I checked out your blogs – your magnificent pictures – you can see the gamut from the high-end Nikon to my Canon Rebel T3i.
4. I prayed a lot
The most important advice I received came from my daughter, she has a Nikon 3100 – she loves it – BUT – she noted that she found the two most important things to taking pictures to her were – lighting and lenses. She said you can get a good camera body, but finding good lenses is more important. You’ll also find that lenses can cost quite a lot – some the equivalent of a luxury car! She said I could check out refurbished cameras from Nikon or Canon and get a good first camera.
Another hmmm factor was that her sister-in-law recently switched from Nikon to Canon – for many reasons – one being the cost of camera and lenses were a wee bit less and the camera is just as good.
Decision Time – two reasons that helped my final decision
1. The most important thing to me was to keep to what I could afford comfortably
2. Lenses – I checked out SHOOT/FLY/SHOOT – a tremendous resource for teaching and comparing Nikon and Canon – their Good, Better, Best list with recommended lenses.
3. What was most important – LENSES – I chose a camera – with 18-55mm lense and added a 50mm lense.
With the information I’d gathered and knowledge of what I could afford without debt, I chose the Canon Rebel T3i.
I am thrilled. It is light, the lenses are terrific – oh, by the way – also looked at ‘packages’ and the reviews – I chose AGAINST a package because of the lack of quality of some important items such as tri-pod.
I plan to add more lenses as my budget allows.
My advice to you – do your research, check comparisions, learn about these features, ask those you know what they like about their cameras and most importantly do what works for you – what you can comfortably fit into your budget –
Someday, I hope to upgrade – but for me – my Canon EOS Rebel T3i is just right for me.