My first DSLR camera

I’ve been thinking of getting a new digital camera for a long time now because of some limitations of the compact (point and shoot) cameras. I remember when we were in Egypt and I wanted to capture some great photos of us going down the water slides and I couldn’t get any good shots and had to do it a couple of times and still end up missing the action. The problem is that the point and shoot cameras don’t have a fast shutter speed and since it takes a couple of seconds to take the next shot, you either get the person at the top of the slide or down in the water. Continuous shoot is a real problem but that’s not the only reason why I wanted more from a digital camera.

Usually in the evening after dinner, we would stroll along the pool or places which are not properly lit and the pictures that I would take would not look nice. It was really frustrating that only good shots could be taken when there is plenty of natural light. The other problem I had was to do with the zoom. You cannot get good zooming on point and shoot cameras. Therefore I wanted a camera which addresses all the problems I’ve been having and when I looked at which cameras could give me the performance I wanted, it came down to having a professional camera, that is, an SLR (Single Lens Reflex).

DSLRs (Digital SLR) come in two flavours – with Live View and without.  Live view allows you to get a view of the shot before you actually take it and it helps you to decide whether the shot is perfect or not. Without live view, you may not be certain that you’re capturing the best shot. I wanted live view in my DSLR but did not want to spend more than £300. When I looked at some cheap DSLRs, they did have all the requirements that I wanted. The cheapest camera I could get was £350 but that was not a brand name that I was looking for. In my mind, it was only Canon or Nikon because when you buy a DSLR, you tend to stick with it for a long time and making the wrong choice at the start could cost you more in the long term.

It’s things like replacement batteries, lens and compatibility that you need to watch out for. In the end, I had a couple of cameras which seem to suit my requirements. Canon EOS 1000D, Canon EOS 400D, Canon EOS 450D, Nikon D3000 and Nikon D5000. My budget had been raised to £500 at that point. After reading reviews and looking at advice on various websites, I decided to go with the Nikon D5000. The cost of the camera itself was £529 and it comes as a kit with the 18-55 lens.

What you don’t think about when you’re purchasing a camera is how much it’s going to cost you to have a working camera. You need a memory card (high speed one for a DSLR), a camera case and insurance because if you’re spending so much money on the camera, you might as well protect it against accidental damage. Extended warranty for 3 years costs £69, SD card around £20 and camera case £20 because of half price discount of buying an expensive camera. When you put all that on top of the camera, you end up paying around £650 which is more than £100 on top on the camera.

I will be getting £50 cashback on my Nikon D5000 because of a certain promotion on that particular model but then again £600 for a camera is quite expensive. I must admit that the pictures from the DSLR very good though. I can also take High Definition (HD) movies on the camera, so it’s killing two birds with one stone. Mind you that lens are quite expensive though, around £150 and there are other things to consider as well as you get into photography like flash gun and tripod but I suppose that these have to wait not until I’m familiar with all the modes of the camera. Overall I’m very happy with my birthday present which came some days before my actual birthday.