There are so many cameras out available today that it seems more or less impossible to pick the right one. I will cover a range of photography cameras for beginners and help you navigate the jungle of photography cameras.
The 4 main types of DSLR cameras
We can categorize DSLR cameras into 4 categories:
#1 – Interchangeable-lens full system DSLR
This is by far the most common type of DSLR. These cameras have all the functions you need to take just about any kind of photo. The lenses are also interchangeable, which means that you with one lens can shoot ultra-wide photos, and by simply changing the lens, be able to get super-tele macro photos.
#2 – Fixed lens DSLR
Same as above, except that the lens cannot be changed. Stay away from these cameras if you want to pick up photography as a serious hobby, as not being able to change the lens will greatly limit their versatility.
#3 – Wannabe DSLR or ZLR
There’s also a category of cameras that look and feel a bit like a DSLR, but lacks the mirror of a real SLR and only has an electronic viewfinder. These cameras have fixed zoom lenses.
#4 – Hybrid cameras
These are regular “point-and-shoot” cameras that have interchangeable lenses. They have less functionality than a real DSLR and only has an electronic viewfinder.
So which type should I buy?
Get an interchangeable-lens full system DSLR. All the other types of cameras are too limited if you want to do more than just take point-and-shoot pictures.
Megapixels don’t count!
If you look at adverts for photography cameras, you will see that they always try to sell you the camera with the highest resolution. Here’s why you shouldn’t care about the resolution; all DSLRs sold today have a high enough resolution. What you need to care about is not how many megapixels, but the quality of the pixels.
Why would a 5 megapixel DSLR image have more details than a 10 megapixel cell phone image?
Because the DSLR has a larger and better sensor.
That’s really what it comes down to. Generally, the more expensive the camera, the larger the sensor. A larger sensor does not only give you more details in the image, but it will also reduce the amount of light needed to get the right exposure. Note that the sensor size will also affect depth-of-field and focal length (why this is the case is somewhat complicated and beyond the scope of this article).