I own an iPhone 4s and have owned every iPhone since the very first one. I like the iPhone. But I have recently tired of Apple’s closed systems, PR policies which limit valuable and necessary information that consumers need to make informed decisions as well as other business practices. Accordingly, I have decided for the […]

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PUBLISHER’S NOTE: This post is an updated compilation of several shorter posts I wrote in the past trying to answer the question, “What camera should I buy?”

It’s still the most popular question I am asked. “What camera should I buy?” Lately there’s a new twist to the question…”Is this brand camera better than that brand camera?”

No matter how hard I try to tell people that there’s no perfect answer, they keep asking. So since I can’t convince anyone otherwise, at least know the answers to THESE questions before you ask me YOUR question.

1 ) What subject(s) will you photograph most often? Weddings, portraits, wildlife, sports, landscapes, still lifes, food, fashion, etc.
2 ) What gear (if any) do you now own?
3 ) If you had to choose between ease of use and power, which would you select?
4 ) Do you want a compact pocket-sized camera (point and shoot) or a DSLR?
5 ) On a scale of 1-10 (10 being a working pro and 1 being someone who usually shoots with a disposable camera) how would you rate your skill?
6 ) What is the MOST money you’d be willing to spend on a camera?
7 ) How long do you think you might keep the camera?
8 ) What do your friends use?
9 ) Do you have a local camera store that can offer you support?

If you have thought carefully about these questions and have the answers – you should then be closer to knowing what the perfect camera for you might be.

Hopefully, your interest in photography is strong enough that you’ll read this entire article. That will give you the best chance of making the right decision. If you’re just not that interested, scroll all the way to the bottom to see some of the popular cameras that I recommend.

For those who stuck with me:

I know that beginners especially want this question answered. They are more likely to think that it’s the camera that takes the picture, not the photographer. Unfortunately for them, that’s not the case. And there’s no secret, magic or special camera that will make you into Ansel Adams.

Let’s start with goals. What goals do you have with your photography? Photographing the kids is much easier and less expensive than photographing wildlife. Making studio portraits will require a different kind of camera than that used by sports photographers. Do you want to turn pro or just make pictures you’ll share with your immediate family? Understand this simple truth: There is no perfect camera. And not all cameras are designed for all types of photography. Many photographers have more than one camera, depending on how many photographic pursuits they are engaged in at one time.

You’ll need to take into account a wide variety of factors when selecting a camera, and the first is budget.

This post continues below….

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Thanks to my pals at Borrowlenses.com – I got a chance to play witha a couple of the new Canon Speedlite 600EX-RT Flash units for a week. I used them in real world situations – photographing hummingbirds. It’s the new flagship in the Canon line. At almost $600 it’s the most expensive flash Canon has ever […]

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I am speaking at NAB again this year and prior to my afternoon session I met up with the guys and gals from Canon to get a hands-on look at the new Canon 1DX. It is an impressive beast with the heft and girth of a pro camera and features that will make any sports, […]

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Apple’s new iPad is a great way for photographers to show off their images. The new display is simply stunning. It’s not one of those things that you need scientific equipment to know. You can tell – just by looking, that Apple has significantly improved the display. If you look at the original iPad side-by-side […]

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Most of the people opining about the Lytro have never seen one, never held one, never used one – but these days, I guess authority doesn’t count for much in a culture where everyone’s entitled to their opinion even if it’s not based on a single fact, completely wrong and slung with bad intent. Now […]

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