The inevitable question that is asked of me, as a photographer, is this:
“I’m looking at getting a new camera, what kind should I get?”
I have to break it to you.
There is no simple answer.
Sure, I could tell you to go for the biggest and the best. Or the most expensive. But what good will that really do you?
Instead, my usual reply is this:
What do you want to use it for?
Then, depending on how the conversation goes, I might ask what type of bag you want to carry around if you plan to have your camera on hand always. Do you have a purse that can fit the kitchen sink? Yes? Well, then that entry-level DSLR might not be a bad idea.
But, on the other hand, if you’re like me, and have a small purse, or sometimes no purse at all, then you might want to think in terms of compact cameras. The quality on today’s cameras is really phenomenal, so it depends, again, on what you’re going to use it for.
What I like about my “everyday camera” is that I can fit it in my pocket. And I can use it with one hand. Bonus points because it takes videos.
Actually, the HD video feature was a selling point for me. For my personal use, I wanted a camera that could document our everyday moments. One that could record my boys as they took their first steps. A camera that would be on hand and easy to operate while I maneuvered around small children.
I didn’t want something I needed to think about. Or a camera with a lot of parts.
Changing lenses? Not something I wanted to deal with.
But then again, I’m a professional photographer. I do this day in and day out. I need to draw the line, find a way to experience my life rather than concentrate all my energy on documenting it. So the compact camera was my choice. I am still happy with my five year old Canon G12 (#afflink – I’m using Amazon affiliate links in this entire post, thanks for your support!).
When you buy a camera, make sure you’re confident in the brand. In the five years since I purchased my G12, I’ve had to send it in for repairs twice… due to inadvertent camera drops. Fortunately, I know Canon stands behind their product, and that the repairs they do are top notch. Just something to consider if you look into any off brand cameras.
So, what should you do if your 10 year old camera is dying? Have you been told it’s better to buy a new one than to repair? Are you hoping to find recommendations for a good replacement? What to do…
Think about what you want.
Do you want small size, portability? Do you want easy to use, easy to download, etc? It all comes down to personal preference.
Now, let’s hear from some other people about their favorite camera. These all happen to be moms who use their cameras on a regular basis. Their opinions vary as much as their cameras do, but each has figured out what works best for them.
Now, as you read through these thoughts below, consider which opinions echo your own sentiments. It may just help you get a better idea of what camera you should get.
Canon DSLR Bundle – Canon EOS Rebel T5 with 2 lenses #afflink
It’s easy to use, takes great pics and came with 2 lenses. It can be cumbersome to take to school events where there’s not much room in the seating area but I love it.
Peta Groth, www.greatgoogamoogas.com
iPhone + DSLR – iPhone or Nikon D3200 with 2 lenses
IPhone (does that count?) I have a lovely Nikon DSLR that takes great pictures, but my phone fits in my pocket and is always on hand. I make a point to pull out the Nikon for fun sometimes and for special trips and events, but when capturing our everyday moments I almost always use the IPhone.
Erin Buhr, www.bambinitravel.com
Canon DSLR – Canon EOS 70D kit
Canon 70D – being able to shoot in manual mode to get quality pictures is invaluable to me. I would rather carry around a nice camera bag that looks like a purse with my DSLR in it than have mediocre photos of the memories I care about. Getting used to carrying a bigger camera was pretty easy too and I am much happier with the results even though I have an awesome camera on my phone.
Kara Carrero ALLterNATIVElearning.com
Olympus Tough Waterproof Camera
These days my go to camera is an Olympus Tough point and shoot. Since I’m in my 40s, I cut my teeth on heavy SLR film cameras–I didn’t go digital until my first kid was 4, and I’ve had enough of carrying a giant bag for camera and baby gear. The Tough is water proof, dirt proof, drop proof and fits in my jean’s pocket. I have boys, I need to be able to keep up with them! Plus it takes blog worthy photos. (I have a Sony a100 DSLR if I feel like dragging it around.)
Denise Bertacchi, stlMotherhood.com
I am always carrying around my Nikon DSLR. I hate it when I am stuck using my camera phone to capture a really great moment of my kids because the quality is not up to par. I purchased a new larger purse so my camera fits in it so I will always be prepared to snap away!
Katie Pinch www.alittlepinchofperfect.com
Canon Elf – Canon Powershot Elf 350
I have a simple canon elf that tucks into my purse that seems to have 9 lives. (it has been dropped, stepped on, splashed, and still works 7 years and 3 kids later!) It takes good photos and videos for it’s size and price. My kids use it often too! I also have a Canon Rebel EOS that has a much clearer image, but is bulkier, so I use a camera case when bringing it out and about. I love the clarity of the picture and couldn’t image life without it! The image is clear and I can change lenses but it doesn’t have video.
Amanda Boyarshinov www.theeducatorsspinonit.com
I hope you found this post helpful! It’s always tough to decide on something like what camera you should get, so if this post has helped you at all, I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!