Camera Buying Guide

Great Thread ! yes, basic understanding of making pictures is important, sensor size ? it depends what your output media format will be, just web, or high quality to enlarge or make partly selections from one picture (high resolution) i think the type of camera is very important, if you want to have camera at hand any time, (compact camera) "size matters" if you want to use a wide variarity of glass/lenses, a MFT camera would be a good choice also for making videos at some times, do you need a camera that will focus fast ? dual pixel is a fast technique for that, do you want to expand to a rig ? if the're options for the camera you have in mind, that would be great, will the camera accept fast(er) memory cards? in SD or Compact Flash format ? does the camera take pictures in RAW format ? i believe there are even compact cameras that will do this, finding youtube examples how to use a camera can be helpfull.
A camera that will have customizeable buttons ? is also worth looking for.
Does a/this camera have an option to add a handgrip battery pack ?(if the camera is power hungry)
These are some of the things i learned in due time, a camera choice will be based on the type of "work" and one's person "taste"
My choice went for a Lumix G7 which i think is a camera with a lot of options, for a reasonable price even more on eBay, because it's already an older model, also like to explore the the options of my smartphone in different situations, for the case of: the best camera is the one you got with you.
 
A useful guide for sure, - but usually folks buying their first camera will be blown-away by the range on offer.... so they may plump for the one their friends suggest ( probably a good choice) -OR- which gets most positive on-line Reviews ( which may be less truthful?).

I guess it comes down to PRICE . . . . for a youngster's first camera a "compact" is reasonably safe... Provided it's protected against bumps, in a case? They may tire of photography, so below £100 is easily good-enough to kick-start any creativity.
+ For "sports-recording" there are plenty of so-called Action Cameras - which will record video strapped to the Helmet (or Handlebars, Mast, etc.), with the advantage they should be reasonably waterproof. The Market-leader Go-Pro is expensive, but "look-a-likes" abound, starting below £50. Apart from "Action" they have limited appeal IMHO.

In general you will ( for the major Names) "Get what you pay for" - yet a good "Bridge" Camera is hard to beat, in terms of performance ((( So you can build-up a library of good pictures (memories) from times gone by)). Where they score less is their bulky size and limited battery capacity, as the battery-space is limited by the historic shape of (film) SLRs, where battery-power didn't need to support a screen backlight. This is a design-flaw IMHO.... sticking to the old-shape for no good reason, esp. as most cameras offer image stabalising.
However, if folks include Video as a "must-have" then things get trickier.....
FWIW - I just bought a camcorder which takes SDXC cards ( best price/capacity), and boasts 25MPx in Stills-mode. Obviously its Movie-Modes are quite extensive...but for £400 it should be - and able to record any holiday-break; once COVID-19 is sent packing.
If one can afford the Holiday-Break, then with a little Skill, a suitable camera permits re-living the highlights. Another feature is, Audio recording - to give atmosphere to movies. -OR- Stills projected as a "Presentation" which is also worth the effort, having trundled round landscapes and other "touristy" things.

Cheers.
 
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A useful guide for sure, - but usually folks buying their first camera will be blown-away by the range on offer.... so they may plump for the one their friends suggest ( probably a good choice) -OR- which gets most positive on-line Reviews ( which may be less truthful?).

I guess it comes down to PRICE . . . . for a youngster's first camera a "compact" is reasonably safe... Provided it's protected against bumps, in a case? They may tire of photography, so below £100 is easily good-enough to kick-start any creativity.
+ For "sports-recording" there are plenty of so-called Action Cameras - which will record video strapped to the Helmet (or Handlebars, Mast, etc.), with the advantage they should be reasonably waterproof. The Market-leader Go-Pro is expensive, but "look-a-likes" abound, starting below £50. Apart from "Action" they have limited appeal IMHO.

In general you will ( for the major Names) "Get what you pay for" - yet a good "Bridge" Camera is hard to beat, in terms of performance ((( So you can build-up a library of good pictures (memories) from times gone by)). Where they score less is their bulky size and limited battery capacity, as the battery-space is limited by the historic shape of (film) SLRs, where battery-power didn't need to support a screen backlight. This is a design-flaw IMHO.... sticking to the old-shape for no good reason, esp. as most cameras offer image stabalising.
However, if folks include Video as a "must-have" then things get trickier.....
FWIW - I just bought a camcorder which takes SDXC cards ( best price/capacity), and boasts 25MPx in Stills-mode. Obviously its Movie-Modes are quite extensive...but for £400 it should be - and able to record any holiday-break; once COVID-19 is sent packing.
If one can afford the Holiday-Break, then with a little Skill, a suitable camera permits re-living the highlights. Another feature is, Audio recording - to give atmosphere to movies. -OR- Stills projected as a "Presentation" which is also worth the effort, having trundled round landscapes and other "touristy" things.

Cheers.
Most bridge cameras will suffer noticeably in terms if image quality compared to a DSLR or APS-C/FF mirrorless as the sensor size is no bigger than a consumer compact. Might not be an issue for some, however worth pointing out that bridge cameras are NOT hard to beat in terms of IQ :smashin:
 
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Most bridge cameras will suffer noticeably in terms if image quality compared to a DSLR or APS-C/FF mirrorless as the sensor size if no bigger than a consumer compact. Might not be an issue for some, however worth pointing out that bridge cameras are NOT hard to beat in terms of IQ :smashin:

...especially in low/poor lighting conditions
 
Hi all, I take drone footage for aerial videos and photos but want to take some more better ground shots. At the moment I use my iPhone 12 with a DJI Gimbal. Ideally I want to further down the line use it for indoor videos too maybe on a Gimbal so one that can do that, feel free to recommend a Gimbal too for it, not too expensive. Would like it to do good sound too incase I use it for interviews or video blogs etc and a nice optical zoom would be nice, or option to add extra lenses too to add zoom. Any recommendations please.
 
the guide is good! is there any similar guide here on mobile cameras? many people select phone based on the camera megapixels. what else we should look on mobile phone cameras?
 
the guide is good! is there any similar guide here on mobile cameras? many people select phone based on the camera megapixels. what else we should look on mobile phone cameras?
Mobiles all have similar sized sensors and so image quality is going to be similar. MP help if you want to print large or crop heavily but small sensors don't like to be cropped heavily.

Mobiles are now using software to improve image quality and give certain looks such as blurred backgrounds but at present they are still no substitute for the real thing. That being said for insta and the like mobile phones are more than adequate.
 
Mobiles all have similar sized sensors and so image quality is going to be similar. MP help if you want to print large or crop heavily but small sensors don't like to be cropped heavily.

Mobiles are now using software to improve image quality and give certain looks such as blurred backgrounds but at present they are still no substitute for the real thing. That being said for insta and the like mobile phones are more than adequate.
yeah I see that they are using software and sometimes is hard for me to edit them later.ouffff
 
yeah I see that they are using software and sometimes is hard for me to edit them later.ouffff
Some do allow you to use the raw files now :smashin: iPhones for example use (or are going to use) a special kind of raw files that keeps all the software edits (such as fake blur) but have all the data to work with. Sounds good.
 
Some do allow you to use the raw files now :smashin: iPhones for example use (or are going to use) a special kind of raw files that keeps all the software edits (such as fake blur) but have all the data to work with. Sounds good.
im using the samsung note 20 and it has a function that resembles the professional camera settings. however I am not so good in using all this settings since I am not a pro...I need to practise moreeeeee
 
im using the samsung note 20 and it has a function that resembles the professional camera settings. however I am not so good in using all this settings since I am not a pro...I need to practise moreeeeee
Don't need to be a pro, very few pros (if any) on here :smashin:
 
ohh really? I didn't know. I am glad that I am not in between pros!
Don't forget, being a pro doesn't necessarily mean you're good, it just means you make money from it. There's plenty of amatuer photographers that are better than a lot of pros.
 
Hello all!

Thank you for this guide.

I just found my old Canon D450 camera and really want to get back to using it again as my iPhone is ok but lacks versatility.

My dad recommended an 18-135mm lens and I’m looking at reviews and guides and so on.

I’ll see how far the D450 gets me before I rush out and get something like the D850 but I’m mindful that Canon isn’t the only brand out there.
 
Hello all!

Thank you for this guide.

I just found my old Canon D450 camera and really want to get back to using it again as my iPhone is ok but lacks versatility.

My dad recommended an 18-135mm lens and I’m looking at reviews and guides and so on.

I’ll see how far the D450 gets me before I rush out and get something like the D850 but I’m mindful that Canon isn’t the only brand out there.
It’s a good starter setup to see if you get back into it, it’ll produce very nice images.

For the record it’s a 450D and the D850 is a Nikon, Canon put the D at the end, Nikon in front.

The D850 is a massive step up in every sense. It’s full frame (450D is APS-C), it has a high mp count, much better autofocus, better viewfinder, better LCD, basically everything is better. It’s also bigger and heavier, and as it’s full frame the lenses will also be bigger and heavier.

If you do get the bug and want to invest in something I’d seriously consider going mirrorless as this is where the market’s gone and where manufacturers are investing. That being said, due to this DSLR’s and their lenses can be found much cheaper.
 
Noob question here, why do cameras still rely on uploading pictures via memory cards, why can't they just use a system like mobile phones?
 
Noob question here, why do cameras still rely on uploading pictures via memory cards, why can't they just use a system like mobile phones?
I’m not sure anyone outside of the camera manufacturers know for sure but there are several reasons why they might not.

It will add bulk
It will create even more heat build up
It costs more
If it corrupts it likely means a new camera
Cards are more flexible, you can take them places for printing for example.
Some people like to be off loading images whilst using the camera for something else
 
I’m not sure anyone outside of the camera manufacturers know for sure but there are several reasons why they might not.

It will add bulk
It will create even more heat build up
It costs more
If it corrupts it likely means a new camera
Cards are more flexible, you can take them places for printing for example.
Some people like to be off loading images whilst using the camera for something else
It may cost more but aren't memory cards expensive? I'm sure photographers wouldn't mind paying a little more for a camera and a cloud based subscription?

Couldn't you just print images right off your cloud memory? You wouldn't need any hardware to do so?
 
Noob question here, why do cameras still rely on uploading pictures via memory cards, why can't they just use a system like mobile phones?
Some camera do have build in storage,but its very rare,the main thing especially for a pro,you can be working on your computer,and still have your camera around your neck ready to go,plus what size build storages do they go for,shooting raw on a large megapixel camera you soon fill it up,then you be stuck,a lot of people dont want to take an laptop out with them all the time,so i think it was just an easy option to have memory card,they dont take up much space,and if one fails,you just use another one,if it fails inside the camera your bugger
 
Some camera do have build in storage,but its very rare,the main thing especially for a pro,you can be working on your computer,and still have your camera around your neck ready to go,plus what size build storages do they go for,shooting raw on a large megapixel camera you soon fill it up,then you be stuck,a lot of people dont want to take an laptop out with them all the time,so i think it was just an easy option to have memory card,they dont take up much space,and if one fails,you just use another one,if it fails inside the camera your bugger
Couldn't you in theory do the same via the cloud system on your phone, tablet or laptop? Obviously memory cards would be a great back up for certain situations, like having no signal for instance.
 
Regarding buying a used camera, do you think it's wise to buy one off Marketplace or would you only recommend a refurbished camera online? When buying used, what shutter count is acceptable?
 
It may cost more but aren't memory cards expensive? I'm sure photographers wouldn't mind paying a little more for a camera and a cloud based subscription?

Couldn't you just print images right off your cloud memory? You wouldn't need any hardware to do so?
Depends on the cards, some are crazy expensive some are cheap.

Some cameras already allow you to automatically upload to the cloud using ftp, but some don’t like this method and you might be somewhere without internet connection.

I’m not saying internal storage is not a good idea I was just answering your question why they don’t :smashin:

I personally find it more convenient to just whip the card out and put it in the computer rather than plugging the camera in.
 
It’s a good starter setup to see if you get back into it, it’ll produce very nice images.

For the record it’s a 450D and the D850 is a Nikon, Canon put the D at the end, Nikon in front.

The D850 is a massive step up in every sense. It’s full frame (450D is APS-C), it has a high mp count, much better autofocus, better viewfinder, better LCD, basically everything is better. It’s also bigger and heavier, and as it’s full frame the lenses will also be bigger and heavier.

If you do get the bug and want to invest in something I’d seriously consider going mirrorless as this is where the market’s gone and where manufacturers are investing. That being said, due to this DSLR’s and their lenses can be found much cheaper.
Thanks for this.

This is the Canon I was looking at https://www.canon.co.za/cameras/eos-850d/

I'm sure that there are amazing cameras for the money these days.

I did look at the mirrorless cameras and think then that they make a lot more sense than a DSLR but a lot of people were anti-mirrorless back then.

I saw many fancy cameras and the prices were outrageous. I'll be buying used DSLR gear for now until I know that I want to spend the money on a fancy new mirrorless.

I just got fed up with how limited I was with my iPhone 13 Pro - it takes very good close up photos for memories that I appreciate but I want to be able to zoom in on stuff and control the photo as I did with the D450.

It's wild how cheap older model cameras and lenses are.
 
It may cost more but aren't memory cards expensive? I'm sure photographers wouldn't mind paying a little more for a camera and a cloud based subscription?

Couldn't you just print images right off your cloud memory? You wouldn't need any hardware to do so?
Yeah but not everyone wants to use cloud storage and have to pay monthly for it.

I certainly don't and if you have petabytes of data, it gets expensive very quickly.

Backblaze is $19500 for 250TB per year and that's cheap. You could build a good server and RAID setup for that.

45Drives does a pretty good server without storage for $7500 (less for the cheaper models) and a 20tb drive is ~$388 so 15 drives in RAID 5+0 is ~$5820 giving you 308TB capacity.

Sure, cloud storage can be spread out over multiple servers across multiple contents and you should always have your data stored on and off-site but it's not as simple as 'cloud is good'.
 
Thanks for this.

This is the Canon I was looking at Canon EOS 850D - Cameras - Canon South Africa

I'm sure that there are amazing cameras for the money these days.

I did look at the mirrorless cameras and think then that they make a lot more sense than a DSLR but a lot of people were anti-mirrorless back then.

I saw many fancy cameras and the prices were outrageous. I'll be buying used DSLR gear for now until I know that I want to spend the money on a fancy new mirrorless.

I just got fed up with how limited I was with my iPhone 13 Pro - it takes very good close up photos for memories that I appreciate but I want to be able to zoom in on stuff and control the photo as I did with the D450.

It's wild how cheap older model cameras and lenses are.
Ah right the 850d, that's still APS-C so will be compatible with the lenses for the 450d. The 850d will be a significant upgrade over the 450d but I'd use what you have first to see if you gel with it before spending money :smashin:
 

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