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Finding the right camera for your skill level


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Whether you love bringing your compact camera along to parties and social events, or whether you’re starting to experiment more with creative DSLR photography, it’s often hard for some people to choose the right camera for their skill level. Here’s a guide to the three basic skill levels you may fall into, and the kinds of camera that suit each group.

Absolute beginner

If you’re just starting out in the world of photography, there are plenty of great options for beginners. If terms like ISO, f-stop and AI Focus AF still confuse you at this stage, don’t despair. Compact digital cameras these days pack a powerful punch, with some models featuring extreme zoom capabilities, high quality sensors, built-in image optimisation features and even HD movie recording.

For those who want to start experimenting creatively with digital SLR photography, your best bet is an entry level SLR. Entry level SLR cameras are offered by nearly all top camera companies, and they let you take spectacular photos without having to worry about all the complicated feature. The Canon EOS 1000D is a popular first-choice for beginners.


If you’ve been reading up on all your photography terms and are familiar with the whole glossary, it may be time for you to step up to a mid-range DSLR camera. Mid-range DSLR cameras, often sometimes known as cameras for ‘enthusiasts’, have more advanced features than entry level models, and are perfect for those who want to grow into a certain camera model and slowly take their time to get to know all the different controls and features. Great mid-range cameras include the Canon EOS 60D, which is perfect for anyone starting to get more creative with their photos.


If you’re really feeling as though you’re ready to take on a greater challenge with your photography, but don’t quite consider yourself a pro who’s ready for full-on professional cameras yet, there are plenty of great top range cameras intended for skilled photography enthusiasts who really know their stuff. Models in the top end of the enthusiast range include the Canon EOS 7D and the EOS 5D Mark II, both cameras capable of superb image quality and full manual controls.

If you can’t easily slot yourself into one of these skill levels, you can head online to websites like Canon Australia and take a mini quiz on what kinds of things you’re looking for in a camera. Within a matter of seconds, you’ll have a number of ideal cameras suggested to you. Many websites also have video tutorials and instructional step-by-steps categorised by different skill levels. Watching these is a great way to judge where you’re at with your photography. If something in a video you’re watching seems too hard, you may need to consider more simple cameras and features.

Flickr is another great resource to use when trying to decide what camera you should buy. There are often whole groups and photo sets dedicated to photos taken with a particular camera model or lens, so having a browse through these photos will give you a better idea as to what kind of photos appeal to you.

This article is brought to you by Canon Australia. For more ideas on capturing that perfect moment with an entry level SLR , visit the Canon website.


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