Home Photography First-time Camera Buying Guide Detailed Explanations

First-time Camera Buying Guide Detailed Explanations

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Every year I publish a camera buying guide to help first-time camera buyers. I try to keep it simple, but people who already have cameras often have questions …


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  1. Hi ..seeking your advise on some other aspect which is not related to this video… I own a Nikon D850… yesterday while changing lens I observed some very thin line scratches on the steel mount ring of my body. Is it ok… ?. .. I mean to say it is normal which is happening when we change our lens on body and the lines of scraped is happened due to normal wear and tear happens due to changes of lens on camera body… plz clear my doubt as I am worried regarding this..

  2. Congrats Tony
    The biggest false statement of the year is yours.
    "There is no good lens for Sony's apsc line"
    All the native sigma apsc lenses are very good, sony 50 1.8oss 35 1.8oss is also stellar, and there are more, and massive amount of native mf lenses + you can use ALL the FE lenses nativly, yes your favoruite 16-35GM also, what comes very handy if you want to switch to FF Sony, because you already have the lenses. From Fuji you don't have an option to step up, only to MF with an different mount. For Sony apsc you can attach 100+ lens nativly, including pro cine lenses

  3. Thoughtful and analytical, as always. I suggest that, rather than picking just a camera and a single lens, newcomers should pick a camera taking into account the manufacturer's full range of lenses. Too many people box themselves in, choosing a decent body which unfortunately lacks a good range of native lenses to support them after they outgrown the kit lens (see, e.g., Sony or Nikon APS-C bodies). (Yes, there always is Sigma as an option.) Thanks!

  4. Sorry Tony but you've just made a wrong statement about the D610 having only one card slot… It is essentially the same camera as the D600 except for 1/2 fps increase in the continuous high shooting rate and an upgraded shutter mechanism. and to my point the D610 like the D600 has 2 SD card slots and is a great deal as an intro to the Nikon Full Frame world and both these cameras take beautiful sharp pictures and you can have a nice used D600 for under $1,000 here in Canada.

  5. Hi Tony. I'm a beginning photographer, but have been following your video's for a while. I appreciate all the advice. I do, however, want to add a suggestion: to show on your video actual photos of what all these cameras can and can't do, and let us decide for ourselves what's right for us. For example, show a photo taken by an IPhone, and demonstrate this is the only bokeh you can get, but then show how much better it is with this big fast lens, and show the two photos side by side, and describe how it is better. You can maybe do the same with depth of field, or sharpness, etc. I know dxomark does this does this to some degree when comparing cell phones.

    Also, is there a signature look to a lens and or camera? I know if you shoot raw, you get the same baseline information that you then tweak, but is there a certain look a camera or lens has that can't be duplicated with another camera or lens?

  6. Good job Tony. You put a lot of thought and effort into this guide and it shows. I agree with you about Sony APS-C cameras and I think we're all waiting for Sony to FINALLY putting out updates to the A5100 and A6000… however, as far as the Sony APS-C lenses go, yes the zooms are disappointing, but the primes are every bit as good as Canon and Nikon's APS-C lenses and mostly better. That not even mention the awesome Sigma primes that have come out recently. If APS-C is your end goal though, Fuji is a no-brainer. Also, you can't recommend Pentax and Micro 4/3 due to longevity concerns, but I think the same should be said for Canon's EOS-M mount. It became a dead-end when the EOS-R came out.

  7. Tony you did spend to much time apologizing to gear heads instead talking to first time buyers. This made video significant less attractive to them. In the future in this kind of videos pleas ignore us enthusiasts completely.

  8. Hoping someone replies to this, but does Tony/Chelsea have any videos that talk about first-time camera buying for people who do care about dynamic range and all that? I've always loved photography and I've exhausted the features of my point and shoots over the last 10 years. Time to upgrade to something where I have more control. Also interested in doing my own prints one day.

  9. Tony, this was great!! thank you for taking the time to cover what most of us do not take the time to evaluate. I am looking to see if i need to replace my camera. I am an hobbyist who takes pics mostly of wildlife, but want to do portraits also. i currently have a Nikon D300 and was trying to see if I need to upgrade to something different. My new passion is astro-photography. thank you again.

  10. As a Fuji shooter who was using Lightroom until this week, I think any recommendation for a Fuji to a first-time buyer should also recommend that they either buy Capture One or, if they want to use Lightroom, at least pre-convert everything with X-Transformer. I had a hard time leaving the Lightroom workflow any time I tried, but I have finally given up on Lightroom and the truth is, while Capture One gives me slightly better results than X-Transformer+Lightroom, the quality of either of these methods is WAY better than Lightroom by itself when working with Fuji files.

  11. I agree that the xt-3 is great for video, but rather than get the huge 16-55mm, the 23mm f/1.4 might be a great option for many because of the pull back manual focusing that has HARD STOPS (slightly noisy on AF but still usable)!! and don't forget the eterna profile which more or less carries over fuji's whole straight-out-of-camera goodness into the video world

  12. I get that the a6000/Sony menu system is difficult to use for most people who are already photographers and are already working with other systems, but I think there is something to be said about a refurbished a6000 + kit lens on amazon for ~$500 USD. The EVF is a ground breakingly useful tool for someone new who is still trying to learn the basics of ISO, aperture, and shutter speed.

  13. I dunno i 'm part of civilization or not. But why i buy better smartphone and buy camera too because i think smartphone just smartphone. Even smartphone camera have better spec than camera regular. Cant give me user satisfaction. When taking picture, if i see something cool far from me, i must take closer look. Its okay but if that something cool is portrait of someone i dunno or object but crowd people there, i cant. So i just use camera in my smartphone for selfie or taking picture for daily use. But when i see something cool or something what i want to memorize it. I bring my camera.
    Just my opinion. No offense. I tell it because i really really do that until now

  14. Thank you for doing this video. I am pointing people that want to get into a DSLR or mirrorless camera to this video. The video quality and sound are excellent. Please keep doing what you are doing. Such a blessing!

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