When people find out I am a photographer I am often asked this: What is the best camera? And this: Canon or Nikon (or whatever brand they know)? In fact, just last week while having tea with Martine of Dainty Mom—which was btw, super fun and a super inspired meeting, at this new tea place, Da.u.de — she did pop these two questions.
In the beginning I stumble on how and what to answer. The questions are simple but the replies, the thought bubbles in my head, can get quite lengthy and I end up answering, I will email you — Ha! Because of this, I formulated a 6-tip step -plan. A simple guideline one can easily remember when buying a camera …not in any order but for me, these are all important…
1. Be Brand Conscious and stick to it: Knowing the brand you prefer and sticking to the brand of preference is my first step when I bought my camera. Since I was a child, my dad and my brothers were Canon users (I am not paid to say this, just saying) so I was familiar with the functions and accessories. So when it was time for me to buy my own equipment with its gadgets, I stuck to brand I was comfortable with. I also knew I could ask their support when I had questions and share accessories with them when I need to.
2. Best Budget: Now that you know the brand you like, it time to do your homework — research! Buying a camera these days is so easy, but can be so difficult. Why? Because each brand now carry hundreds of models, with almost the same functions but with different price points. And the more you research the more you will know that the functions almost overlap. So, the best is read, review then do the math!
3. Shoot What & Where? My next suggestion is know WHAT you will often shoot — food, your kids, family, events, travel ? Do you think you will be using your camera mostly indoors or outdoors? It’s hard to predict all these at first but if visualise where and how you will be using the camera, then you will know more or less your preferred type.
4. Be realistic. When choosing a camera, even if your budget is over the top, go for what you think you can handle and understand. Do not be deceived by all the high-tech functions it can do. Unless you will read the instructions from cover to cover, and master each one, choose one that is simple and you will enjoy. Upgrading later to a more advanced one is easy. What you want is to immediately shoot and capture memories, right? As The H would always remind me : It’s the Indian not the arrow …. so so true! Let this words of wisdom guide you as well when choosing ….
5. Mind The Weight. Another important thing for me, that I think will matter to you most too, is to portability and mobility. Choose a camera that you think you can or actually want to carry. Logging a bulky one can be one of the reasons why your camera is underused and does not see light of day:-) But just the same, do not choose a camera that is too light that you forget you even have one.
6. Do Not Rush. Take your time when buying a camera. This is not a rat race . It’s better to cover all grounds and end up with the one you really like — better be safe than sorry, definitely.
Remember, buying a camera is easy or any gadget for that natter, is easy. It’s learning how to use them and applying it to your everyday life, that is the tricky part. So I hope my 6-tip-plan helps:-)
Happy shopping and good Luck with the hunting!
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