When buying an SLR camera there are several considerations to be made. What will you use the camera for? How much money do you want to spend on it? Have you thought of how many megapixels you might require? Do you want a viewfinder or an LCD display screen? What about optical zoom? There are several things to think about before buying an SLR camera so I have written a short article to serve you in the process.
What will you use the SLR camera for? Is it for holidays, night time parties, are taking pictures of the races? Will you be using it mostly outdoors or indoors? Do you require a small compact camera? Perhaps you wanted to fit neatly in your handbag your pocket your backpack. Would it be an advantage if it was splash proof and sand proof? How would you like to use it, for creative shots with special effects or regular shots? Do you want the option to take wide angles and attached telephoto lenses?
How much would you like to spend on an SLR camera? The more you spend the more likely you are to have extras included in the price. Perhaps extra memory and spare batteries would be helpful. Also a carry case or a bag to protect your camera may be just what you need. Also more expensive cameras often come with a bigger memory cards and card readers. It is worth looking into this before you make your purchase.
How many megapixels will your SLR camera have? Entry-level cameras generally come with seven megapixels. This can create spectacular shots up to A3 in size. As you don’t need large images for website using e-mail this is an adequate amount of megapixels. For a more professional photograph you may want to go above seven megapixels and use the top resolution. Also saving your photo is an uncompressed file is a good idea, in TIFF format if you can. Another tip to create higher quality pictures is to avoid using your digital zoom and get as close to the subject as possible.
What to consider with a zoom function? An SLR Camera will typically come with an optical zoom or a digital zoom, some come with both. This allows you to view and photograph your subject more closely. Buying an SLR camera with an optical zoom allows you to do this without losing any quality. The digital zoom will allow you to zoom in far more closely. When doing this though you will lose resolution. It can still be worthwhile to use the digital if it allows you to get the exact shop you want. The more megapixels your SLR camera has, the less likely you are to notice the loss of quality.
Viewfinders or LCD screens? Generally these days viewfinders are far and few between when buying an SLR camera. You’re most likely to find an LCD screen of at least 2 1/2 inches some come with 3 1/2. The LCD screen gives you a much bigger viewing area when composing your shots. It also allows you to play back your images. One drawback of using an LCD screen though is the fact that you do use a lot of your battery power. Viewfinders don’t use your batteries up and are unaffected by the sun’s glare. You can purchase a hood to reduce the glare when filming in the sun if your camera only comes with an LCD screen. In my opinion it is best to have both. The LCD screen is very user friendly while the viewfinder is helpful when taking shots in sunny conditions and at night when visibility on the LCD is lacking.
How long does it take for your camera to focus? Modern day SLR cameras have a significantly reduced shutter lag meaning they are ready to shoot and focus your subject almost immediately upon starting up. There is a way to speed this up even further by half pressing the shutter button in preparation. Then the camera will refocus and lock onto your subject ready for the actual shot. The newer and more expensive the camera, the more likely you are to find a very low shutter lag. An SLR camera that is more expensive may even have no shutter lag at all.
A few other points to consider revolve around the manual controls the camera. It is worth reading some reviews to see how user-friendly the shape and design of the camera is. Also how accommodating the features are for your experience as a photographer. As the number of options increase in the manual controls, the megapixels and price tend to increase also, making for a more sophisticated camera.
An SLR camera will often come with a movie mode, if this is something that you like the sound of it is worth checking out the specification and comparing it to other models in your price range.
The battery life is another thing to thing about and how many shots/movie time will you get with one charge. How much memory does the camera have? Generally an SLR camera will come with a minimum memory of 16meg or 32 meg. You can always buy extra memory to make good use of your camera. Having a look into the type of memory your camera deals with is also a good idea, as there are eight different types of memory card available.
So what are you getting for your money exactly? Suppliers will offer great variation when it comes to precisely what is in the box. An SLR camera may or may not come with memory card, extra disposable or rechargeable batteries, USB cable to connect to your computer, and AV cable to connect to your television. Other extra’s like a carry strap and a carry case may or may not be included. Detailed instructions should be available, in your preferred language. Looking at the points in this section should help you make your comparisons and guide you to the right decision.
Finally, have you thought about warranty and insurance? There are many cameras available on the market that may not include full warranty that is valid in your country. This is most certainly a particularly important inclusion to spend some time thinking about. It may cost you less money to buy a camera with a limited warranty but this may end up costing you a lot more in the long run. Making sure your camera is insured is a great idea especially when buying a quality SLR camera. If it is lost and stolen or damaged in any way it is nice to know you have peace of mind and your insurance will cover it. Many people include their SLR camera in the home contents insurance policy.
I hope that this article has given you a good idea of what to look for in your brand-new SLR camera. There is a fair old bit to consider but I’m sure you will make the right choice. I wish you the very best of luck with making your decision and buying an SLR camera which meets your requirements.
Related Camera Articles