So you want to buy a new camera? Here are some tips to help you make sure you get the right one.
1. Buy the best camera you can afford if you’re really serious about photography and buy the least expensive camera you need to get the job done if you’re just a casual hobbyist.
2. If you want to put yourself on the best upgrade path, buy a DSLR.
3. Buy the camera that you think will meet your needs, not the camera that all the folks on the local camera club Internet forum think is new.
4. If you can’t decide between brands, pick the brand that your friends use or that your local store supports. That way you can get help more easily when you get stuck.
5. Buy a 50mm F/1.8 fixed focal length lens with your DSLR body instead of the kit lens. This puts you on the quality glass path early.
6. Buy a camera that shoots RAW and that gives you complete manual control – whether you plan to use it or not.
7. If you’re trying to save money, look for the most recent version of the top camera in your class that is available used. For instance, if you decided to buy a top of the line point and shoot camera like the Canon G10, the Canon G9 is a very good second choice and will save you money. (Some people even prefer the G9 to the G10 because it has better low-light performance and better video.)