Buying Your First DSLR
Today’s question comes from Bri:
I am finally ready to “upgrade” to a DSLR camera after feeling limited by my point and shoot. I am a complete amateur but plan to learn as much as I can to improve on my everyday shots. So, what kind of DSLR would you recommend to someone like me? I’ve been trying to read consumer reports to find out which is rated the highest but would prefer some feedback from a fellow Momtog! Also, would you recommend that I go ahead and buy an additional lense or is that too over the top for me right now?
My first DSLR was the Canon Rebel and I loved it. Of course, I didn’t know any different. But, I shot (at a professional capacity) with that camera for over 6 months. Through my paying jobs I was able to save up enough money pretty fast to buy the 30D. The Rebel was a great camera. In fact, I gave it to my Dad last year and he is still using it and getting great images. I personally think the lens that you use affects the image more than the actual camera body, but let’s take a look at the DSLR camera bodies that are out on the market right now. To make this a little easier I’m only going to look at Canon. Besides, Canon better than Nikon anyways
Digital Rebel XS (aka 1000D) 10 MP – $599 (with stock lens)
Digital Rebel XSi (aka 450D) 12.2 MP – $749 (just the camera body for $649)
Digital Rebel T1i 15.1 MP – $899 (just the camera body for $799)
EOS 15.1 MP Digital SLR – $1399.99 (just the camera body for $1199.99)
40D 10.1 MP – $889.95 no lens included
50D 15.1 MP – $1199.95 no lens included
5D Mark II – $2699.99 – no lens
I wouldn’t pay too much attention to the mega pixels. When you get over 10 mega pixels that’s large enough. More mega pixels just means larger files on your computer! I always tell people to buy what they can afford. If you are not a professional photographer and have no interest in being a professional photographer here is my suggestion to you. Why not buy a cheaper camera body and buy a nicer lens? If you just want to take pictures of your own kids you don’t need a 50D or a 5D. Going from a point and shoot to a DSLR you will be ecstatic with the Rebel. Trust me! And if you treat your equipment like most Moms I know you will probably be pretty rough on it. If you’re only spending $600 on a camera you won’t feel so guilty if you drop it or lose it or if little Jimmy drops it in the pool. Why buy a nice camera if you’re going to be scared to use it?
But, if I you have a little more money to spend I would go with the 40D camera body. Why? Well, the 40D is just a little more expensive, but you get more frames per second (meaning your camera will keep shooting when you’re trying to get those action shots) and it has a higher ISO so you can shoot in lower light situations. Just my two cents.
Whatever camera you decide to buy PLEASE buy it from a reputable company. I know when searching online you can find some amazing “deals”, but make sure you know where you’re buying it from. If it looks too good to be true it probably is. Getting your money or credit card number stolen sucks. I buy all of my equipment online from B & H. They usually have some of the best prices and they are totally legit.
I don’t like the stock lenses that come with cameras. I always encourage people to buy just the camera body and purchase a lens separately. I’ve gotten a lot of emails about lenses so I will write a separate blog post about that tomorrow. Stay tuned!