Looking for what Camera to buy ?


Well-Known Member
Mar 24, 2005
Waterford, ?ire
'06 BMW 320 M Sport
This is something that floods every forum I go onto, whether it be from pro's to amatuers, the options available of what and where to buy seem endless these days.

A few things to bare in mind first though before making the plunge.

1. Make sure it has a warranty valid in your country

2. Make sure your buying from a reputable dealer

3. Don't rush into a decision !

4. Don't judge based on the amount of Mega Pixels

You then need not so much to decide a budget but what kind of camera you want. I would divide camera's into four categories:

A. Point and Shoot - ?200 to ?400

This is the category a lot of people will be looking at for their first digital camera. This market is whack full of different makes, models and is hugely competitive. A competitive market has an advantage and disadvantage to you the consumer. The advantage is that prices will be low, the disadvantage is that with such a choice in front of you it may be difficult to make the right one.

Models to look out for:
1. Nikon Coolpix S50 with VR(7.2 Megapixel) Expect to pay around ?270
2. Canon IXUS 800 IS Expect to pay around ?280
3. Fujifilm FinePix F40fd Expect to pay ?300

B. Prosumer SLR - ?300 to ?500
This is the usual next stop for the budding photographer, a stop gap between the point and shoot and the Digital SLR's. These usually give you the advantage of having full control settings without the expense of investing in a Digital SLR system. The quality in the prosumer SLR improves every year, but it will never beat a proper SLR. At least you don't have to spend a fortune on lenses tho !

Models to look out for:
1. Fujifilm FinePix S9600 Expect to pay around ?375
2. Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ50 Expect to pay around ?495
3. Canon PowerShot S3 IS Expect to pay ?350

C. Entry Level Digital SLR - ?600+
This is your door to a future in photography. You can use a DSLR in the same way as a point and shoot, such is the level of automation on them. But to get the most out of them, you need to get out of the automatic modes and delve into the manual setttings. If your going to use a DSLR in automatic, Please refer back to the Point and Shoot section.

Models to look out for:
1. Nikon D40 Kit (with 18-55mm DX Lens) Expect to pay around ?500
2. Canon EOS 400D Kit with 18-55mm Lens Expect to pay around ?670
3. Nikon D80 Kit with 18-135mm DX Lens Expect to pay around ?1000

D. Pro Level Digital SLR
This is the big expensice section. I reckon there are about four to five members on this site who would even look at this. If you get to this level, you'll already have a a brand loyalty, I would be loyal to Canon, others to Nikon. When you get to this level, these are the only two manufacturers worth looking at. It's here that Canon stretches its legs, being he only manufacturer that offers full frame sensor technology in their 5D and 1Ds MKII. They also appear to be leading the way in sports bodies, the 1D MKIII can shoot an incomprehensible 10fps. A lot of pro Nikon shooters are slowly starting to switch to Canon gear, due to frustrations with Nikon not concentrating hard enough on the pro market, but being very very successful in the Entry level market. It's also worth noting that Canon manufacture pretty much everything themselves, while Nikon rely on Sony for sensors ( This is probably the main reason why Nikon don't offer a full frame model) I'm trying to be unbiased but I honestly to see Canon as the leader of this pack. I've invested a lot of money into Canon gear to show I think with my head and not with my heart.

Models to look out for:
1. Canon EOS 1Ds MKII Body Expect to pay ?6,600
2. Canon EOS 5D Body Expect to Pay ?2,000
3. Canon EOS 1D MKIII Body Expect to Pay ?4,500


fps - Frames Per Second

VR - Vibration Reduction

IS - Image Stabilisation

Crop Sensor - Nearly all digital SLR's have a crop sensor, with Canon usually being 1.6x and Nikon 1.5X. This refers to the magnification of a lenses focal length onto the small sensor. A 100mm lense will become a 160mm lense on a 1.6x and a 150mm lense on a 1.5x

Where to buy ?

These are the places I've bought from and trust. Ireland, UK & Europe Only.



http://www.onestop-digital.com/catalog/ - My personal favourite.

www.picstop.co.uk - For batteries, memory cards etc ...