Tips for Buying A DSLR Camera

As you know, the quality of your photographs can vastly improve with the use of a digital or DSLR camera. Despite the advancement of smartphone cameras, they still pale in comparison to the abilities of digital cameras. Although cameras can be expensive, if you are pursuing photography as a career, then you should seriously consider investing a decent amount of money.

 

If you are a beginner or are just looking to spruce up your social media, then I highly recommend buying a used camera. A great place to look is B&H, an online resource, although you can also find a good camera on sites such as eBay or Amazon, make sure to do your research on the model and seller first. Look for cameras that have been serviced; this means that they have been cleaned by a camera shop. If you decide to purchase a camera, you will soon find that the lenses will be much more expensive than the body of the camera. Lenses come in a big range of uses and quality.

 

Telephoto lenses will be the most expensive and are typically only used for sports professional sports photography. A micro (Nikon) or macro (Canon) lens will allow you to get extreme close-ups of small objects. These lenses are typically used in nature photography and certain product photography.

Telephoto lens

Typically, the most versatile lens is a “normal lens” which is usually 35 mm or 50 mm lens. These lenses will capture an image just as you see it with a naked eye. Any lens lower than 35 mm would be considered a wide lens which starts to distort your image like a fisheye. These would be useful in landscape photography but would typically be unflattering in portraits.

 

There are a couple other pieces of equipment you may consider purchasing for your camera. A monopod or tripod can steady your camera and eliminate camera shake when using slow shutter speed. Monopods would be helpful in sports and a tripod would help in low light situations of light painting. Filters or lens protectors are also smart buys. They typically range from $10 to $30 and can protect your lens from scratches or cracks from dropping your camera. A $15 lens protector is much more replaceable than a $700 lens! Also, filters can add artistic elements to your image by adding certain tints or creating certain shapes from light sources.

 

Polarized filters eliminate harsh light in a photograph and are my personal favorite. After choosing equipment, you are ready to start shooting. Almost every photography class will start with reading your manual-so do it!

 

Discover what your camera is capable of and experiment with it. For example, most DSLR cameras have the capability to shoot video. This could add a multimedia aspect to your social media or portfolio. These days, employers are looking for people that can do it all.

 

Author: Abby Shoyat, Undergraduate Consultant

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