Digital photography is rampant in modern day living and the benefits of having a digital camera are undeniable. However, it would be unwise—especially in this economy—to rush to the nearest electronics store and spend a fortune on the most expensive camera in the market. The same goes for sacrificing photo quality for discount prices. Getting the best digital camera for your money requires careful planning and reflection.
The prices of cameras depend on its features and how they contribute to image quality. Resolution, the number of pixels in your photo, defines how large you can print without it becoming unclear. Higher resolutions mean more processing and more expensive electronic chips. This also means more storage will be needed (memory cards, hard drives), which costs a little extra. Camera lenses are also worth considering since some cameras have limited zoom or focus at lower prices, while others have limitless options with high-level gadgets (including macro for capturing the detail on small objects). In-camera photo-editing software and add-ins are also available with high price tags.
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Aside from image quality, there’s also functionality to consider. A small, basic camera may be hard to operate, but one that is too big could be very stressful to bring around. Also, a camera that runs only for fifteen minutes on alkaline batteries definitely isn’t the best digital camera for your money. Make sure to get rechargeable ones or AC adaptors to save on energy and on cash.
The most helpful thing in considering what digital camera to get is your reason for buying and how you intend to use it.
Here are three general types of camera users and the cameras that would be best for them:
These camera owners use their digital cameras simply for casual photos or spontaneous videos any time, any place.
Point-and-shoot cameras are the best digital camera for your money. Small, portable and lower-priced at $199-$499, these have just enough resolution (1-5 megapixels) for sharing quality photos online or for printing small sizes.
Camera users of this type need a more versatile digital camera for their casual photos or their more artistic photography.
Bridge Cameras, which are a mix of the point-and-shoot and the DSLR camera, are perfect for you because they take pictures that are of higher quality than regular cameras (3-8 megapixels). Though much pricier ($500-$1000), it’s money well-spent with a wider range of lens options, the best automatic zoom function in a digital camera, plus a more professional-looking casing.
Finally, these camera owners are those who are seriously dedicated to photography and need the best features for them to take high-quality pictures or videos.
The Digital Single-Lens Reflex (DSLR) Camera is great because it allows the photographer to capture images as he sees them from the angle he takes the picture. DSLRs can cost up to $10,000 since their lenses are separate to purchase, their resolution reaches up to 24 megapixels, and the in-camera functions are the highest quality among all other camera types.