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Thread: What Camera should I buy? an answer to an often asked question

  1. #1
    Registered Member dagray's Avatar
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    Default What Camera should I buy? an answer to an often asked question

    Often I am asked "What camera should I buy?" or I am told "your camera takes great pictures."

    I will address the second statement first: yes if a camera is of decent quality it is capable of taking "great pictures"; however, the camera does not compose the picture or determine the subject of the picture as these and other aspects of photography are the job of the person who uses the tool or tools. In this case the primary tool is the camera with secondary tools being editing software, and the Photographer (user of these tools) also has intangible tools he must use to be good at his craft such as the tool of knowledge: A photographer must first know how to see (have you ever seen a small child bent way over to get a different visual perspective of an object or scene? this child is learning how to see), then the photographer must know how to compose (how to frame what he sees so that his image will show either what he has seen or what he wants us to see), after that the photographer must have the knowledge to set the camera properly (choose the right lens, tripod or not, flash or not, camera settings such as ISO, shutter speed, aperture). Finally the photographer has to know how to edit his photo to get the results he is trying to achieve; much like Ansell Adams had to know how to use a darkroom to achieve his masterpieces.

    So it is the photographer or the artist that produces a great picture

    As to the first question there are many factors involved:
    What do you want to take pictures of?
    how big or how compact does the camera have to be,?
    Budget?
    availability of lenses or accessories (primarily for DSLR cameras not point and shoot cameras).
    these are just a few of the considerations as there are more.

    Overall the real answer to that question is much like the answer to "which Bible should I buy" to which the answer is "the one you will read"... well the answer to which camera should I buy is simple "which one will you carry with you to use? This is the answer for one reason: A camera not used is just a paper weight or dust collector where even a cell phone camera that gets used can produce acceptable images for prints up to 16x24 inches.

    Dave
    God is the artist, he merely allows me to see and capture his work . http://davesphotography7055.zenfolio.com/ coupon code: angelfish
    some of my work accepted by Pentax (the camera bodies I use): http://www.pentaxphotogallery.com/artists/davidgray

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    Registered Member rickztahone's Avatar
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    Default Re: What Camera should I buy? an answer to an often asked question

    I have told people the same thing when I get asked this question. "The best camera is the one you have on you". There is a huge market for smaller more portable cameras today and many times I find myself reaching for mine when I do not feel like lugging around a whole kit.

    At the end of the day, it is as you say, it is the photographer, not the gear that matters.

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    Registered Member dagray's Avatar
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    Default Re: What Camera should I buy? an answer to an often asked question

    Quote Originally Posted by rickztahone View Post
    I have told people the same thing when I get asked this question. "The best camera is the one you have on you". There is a huge market for smaller more portable cameras today and many times I find myself reaching for mine when I do not feel like lugging around a whole kit.

    At the end of the day, it is as you say, it is the photographer, not the gear that matters.


    Rick There have been a couple times this last year I really kicked myself for not having my camera and lenses with me on my way to work, but as I charge a fee for my work I can't ethically take material from my private business into my government 9-5 job. That said Thank goodness for Cell phones with moderate to decent quality optics that can produce an image that can be cleaned up (de-noised, sharpened, etc).

    Case in Point "Stormy Wednesday" shot with my HTC one M8 cell phone, edited in photoshop and Topaz Labs


    My wife is always taking shots with her phone, and well I really wish I could carry my camera gear (but I am not leaving a few thousand dollars in the car while I am in a building with the parking lot open to the public.
    God is the artist, he merely allows me to see and capture his work . http://davesphotography7055.zenfolio.com/ coupon code: angelfish
    some of my work accepted by Pentax (the camera bodies I use): http://www.pentaxphotogallery.com/artists/davidgray

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    Registered Member Discus-n00b's Avatar
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    Default Re: What Camera should I buy? an answer to an often asked question

    I said a few months ago that on my trip across country my phone killed my point and shoot camera for photo quality, especially from a moving car. I would still prefer to shoot with my DSLR but phones are getting better and better these days and you know you'll always have it with you.

    Another note that I would point out for this topic is at the end of the day, at least once you've narrowed your choices down to a few cameras go to a shop and put them in your hands. This is something you will be carrying and holding for who knows how long, you want it to feel right when shooting. You can also rent them online and take them for a test drive before you buy.

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    Registered Member dagray's Avatar
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    Default Re: What Camera should I buy? an answer to an often asked question

    Exactly Matt.

    I made my DSLR choice based on the fact that I already had lenses for the Pentax K mount, and that the Pentax DSLR will take any and all Pentax lenses. I do need an adapter to run my old M42 screw mount lenses, or if I were to get 6x7 or 645 lenses I can get adapters to use those too. I was looking at a 6x7 600mm lens with a very large aperture (f4 or f5) at one point to add to my collection, but the size and weight are why I didn't buy it (I didn't want to pack it around... it comes in it's own wooden box).
    God is the artist, he merely allows me to see and capture his work . http://davesphotography7055.zenfolio.com/ coupon code: angelfish
    some of my work accepted by Pentax (the camera bodies I use): http://www.pentaxphotogallery.com/artists/davidgray

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