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Camera Buyers Guide

Purchasing a new camera is an important decision, and there are plenty of factors to take into account. Whether you’re just starting out or have been photographing for some time, we’ve put together this guide to assist in selecting the ideal camera for you.

Begin by deciding the type of photography you want to pursue. Then, set a budget and search online for cameras within your price range.


When shopping for a camera, price should always be taken into account. A top-of-the-line DSLR or mirrorless model may set you back several thousand dollars before adding lenses.

When looking at cameras under $2,000, many are crop sensor or APS-C models. These smaller, lighter and less expensive than full frame counterparts allow you to get that perfect shot without breaking the bank.

But which camera and lenses should you spend your hard-earned money on? There is plenty of choice out there, but not all of it is created equal. Do your research before making a final decision; reading reviews, comparing prices and making sure your gear matches your individual needs (especially if photography is new to you) will help ensure the most informed purchase decision possible.

Mirrorless Camera or DSLR Camera

When purchasing a new camera, one of the most crucial decisions you’ll have to make is whether to go with mirrorless or DSLR. Both offer distinct benefits and advantages; ultimately, which one works best for your needs and budget depends on which option best meets those requirements.

Mirrorless cameras are a modern innovation that bring together the advantages of both DSLRs and point-and-shoots. These include fast shooting speeds, advanced autofocus technology, 4K/ 8K video recording with various frame rates, and more.

Mirrorless cameras are smaller and noisier than DSLRs, making them ideal for travel photographers. Furthermore, these versatile tools can be used to capture landscape or wildlife photographs as well as other types of photographs.

Mirrorless cameras often lead to the misconception that they cannot accommodate DSLR-sized lenses, which is not true. You can purchase adapters which let you use DSLR lenses on mirrorless cameras made by the same manufacturer; however, these adapters may alter the lens’s focal length and zoom characteristics, plus you may have to pay extra for certain functions like autofocus.

Sensor Size

When purchasing a camera, the sensor size should be taken into account. This determines how much image data can be captured and processed, ultimately impacting the quality of your photos.

Sensor size refers to the physical dimensions of a sensor, which can be measured in either millimetres (mm) or inches (depending on the type of camera). For instance, a “full frame” camera has an imaging area of 36 x 24mm while a’micro four thirds’ or ‘4/3’ camera has an area of 17 x 13mm.

Sensor size is an important factor when it comes to camera quality, unlike megapixels. Larger sensors collect more light and data, producing superior photos with improved dynamic range and lower levels of digital noise.

Larger sensors enable camera manufacturers to boost the resolution of their cameras without sacrificing too much in terms of other image quality attributes. Unfortunately, this can result in larger file sizes and the need for additional processing power in order to handle the increased number of images captured.

Resolution (Megapixels)

Digital photography measures image resolution using megapixels, or pixels. A camera with a higher megapixel count has more pixels than one with a lower count, and this usually translates to better picture quality.

Megapixels are essential for capturing high-resolution images and printing large photos, but they should not be the only factor determining the quality of a camera’s image.

Other elements that affect camera image quality include lens sharpness and resolving power. Furthermore, the size of the sensor plays a role.

Professional photographers often opt for cameras with a high megapixel count, but if you plan to print out your pictures only, a lower count may suffice. Low megapixel counts can also be utilized casually on social media sites like Pinterest.

High-ISO Capabilities

The higher your camera’s ISO setting, the more light that enters the sensor and allows for faster shutter speeds. Unfortunately, increased sensitivity also results in more noise present in an image – this may appear as tiny white dots scattered throughout it, especially around darker areas of the picture.

Image grain, also known as noise, should be avoided at all costs. A low native ISO number produces the sharpest images.

High-ISO capabilities have become an invaluable asset to photographers, enabling them to capture crisp and clear pictures even in difficult lighting conditions. Some cameras now even produce excellent quality results up to ISO 12,800 – a huge improvement from what was previously possible.

An excellent example is the Sony a1, which offers excellent high-ISO performance up to ISO 8000 while still producing clean images. It boasts features like IBIS, a 9.44 million dot EVF and dual card slots which help it make the most of its remarkable high-ISO capabilities.

Lens Quality and Lens Selection

Lenses are the optical components attached to your camera that project images onto its imaging sensor. Lenses have an immense impact on the final outcome of your photos, so it’s essential that you select them carefully.

Lenses come in a wide variety of types – from wide-angle to telephoto, zoom and prime lenses – as well as those that combine functions like image stabilization or auto-focus motors. Prices for each vary significantly so it is essential to understand what each lens does and provides before investing in one for your collection.

When selecting lenses, you should take into account their size and weight. Some are lightweight and small while others can be bulky and heavy.

Lens quality also varies based on the materials used to craft them. Some are made of glass, while others are plastic. This can affect image clarity, bokeh effect and color accuracy.


Cameras are intricate electronic and mechanical instruments that need regular upkeep to stay working optimally. Their resistance to impact, water damage and electrical charges is paramount in determining how long a camera will last and how well it produces photos.

Durability is an essential factor when purchasing a new camera, as it should provide reliable service for many years to come without needing costly repairs or replacement parts.

However, durability can be restricted due to technical factors like the amount of time, cycles or distance that a product will be exposed to. Reliability also plays a role here by measuring resistance against loads and degradation mechanisms as well as repairability once a limiting condition has been reached.

Factors such as design, material and craftsmanship can influence how long a camera lasts. Generally speaking, cameras made with quality components tend to last longer than cheaper units.