I want to buy my first DSLR camera which one should I get?

I want to take photos of myself , friends, family, my makeup looks and also nature. I dont know anything about DSLR camera but I want to learn. Does the lens come with the camera or do you have to buy it sepwrately? I have been told to buy a used one. I live in a small city so I dont know if these stores would have any. Plus what if its not good I dont have any money to waste. Also how do professional photographers get their pictures so nice. Do they use some editing software? And when they print photos what kind of printer do they use? And what priniting paper?

7 Answers

  • 2 months ago

    Look at the buying guide at dpreview.com. That will help you identify the type of modern DSLR that suits you best.  I'd suggest you look for an older one that has a fully rotating LCD screen if you want to take photos of yourself. Also if video is important, work out whether the camera has enough features yo be able to control it and a remote mic socket, none of them are as versatile for video as a real video camera.

    Canon or Nikon are the best sellers and have the largest selections of lenses and accessories. But in their evolution to modernity they will have made changes to the lens mounts along the way, limiting functionality.

    One of these with a 18-135 kit lens would be a nice place to start.


    You won't need to buy another lens for about a year, by which time you'll know exactly where you want to specialise: extreme wide angle, long telephoto, portrait or macro.

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  • 2 months ago

    Pentax K-70.

    The brand may not be familiar to you,

    but it has been around for a long time

    and it offers very good value for the money.

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  • 2 months ago

    "Also how do professional photographers get their pictures so nice. Do they use some editing software?"

    Pros spend a lot of time learning and practicing getting good pictures - the equipment and editing software are just tools they've become skillful at using.  There are lots of editing programs for just about any platform you can think of, and I think it's well worth looking at them.  The best known is Photoshop, but it's an expensive, complicated  beast and (probably) not well suited to your needs.  Photoshop Elements is more suited to beginners (and upwards) and Affinity Photo is another strong contender.  Regardless of what you choose it'll come with a learning curve - find some instructional videos and work through them at a comfortable pace.  IMHO the main problem with starting image editing isn't knowing how to drive the software, it's knowing what you want it to do in the first place.  A lot of people like to develop a work flow to process their images.

     "And when they print photos what kind of printer do they use? And what priniting paper?"

    That depends on what you want to end up with.  You can produce an OK print with an inkjet printer and whatever paper your local supermarket has on offer, but if you're planning to hang it on the wall life gets more complicated.  The problem is that your monitor and whichever printer / paper combination you end up with are very different media - just because it looks stunning on one doesn't mean it'll look even OK on the other.  If you get to the stage of wanting "artwork" I'd spend some time reading up on colour gamuts, ICC profiles and softproofing, and then talk to a professional printer.  Assuming this is a route you might go, this will affect your choice of software - not everything supports those features.    

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  • 2 months ago

    What is the budget.  They can go from a few hundred to more than 10,000. 

    Here is an article about this https://www.digitaltrends.com/photography/digital-...

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  • Sumi
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    A lot of good questions.  Let's take one by one.

    Buying a used DSLR for your needs could easily be a great idea.  Any DSLR made in the past 10 years will be a good option and fully capable of doing the types of shots you mentioned.  Good ones are Canon's T series (e.g. T4, T5, T5i, T6, T6i).  One of the bigger differences between an old Canon DSLR and a modern one is its high-ISO performance.  Since the types of shots you mention will not require you to shoot beyond ISO 400, this is a non-issue for you.  If you needed to shoot beyond ISO 800, then yeah, a new model makes a big enough difference to consider buying new.

    Any DSLR made is going to be good enough for your needs.  There are not any "bad" DSLRs, so really, do not be concerned at all about buying a bad one.  I could say that the only mistake you could make is buying a camera body that has more features/capabilities than you need.  A Canon 5D Mark III, for example, is an excellent camera but more than you need at this time.  Maybe in a few years, you could want/need to upgrade to such a camera, but for now, stick with an entry-level model.

    Every brand of DSLR has entry-level models and they all are sold in a kit with an 18-55mm lens.  This lens is good for wide shots like landscapes, group shots, and portraits of a person.  It's a good lens to start off with and learn the fundamentals of photography.  Buying used can often allow you to buy just the camera body and then buy an upgrade to the standard kit lens which are fine but by no means as good as some of other lenses by Canon, Sigma, Tamron, Tokina and others.

    Anyone answering questions on this forum will tell you that pros get great results from their technical and artistic skills and not necessarily from the gear.  Go to 500px.com and do a search for Canon T3 (https://500px.com/search?q=Canon+T3&type=photos)

    There will be a lot silly cat photos and other shots typical to a beginner because, well, the T3 was a camera for beginners that's been discontinued for many years.  But there are some really good shots proving that it's not the camera, but what you do with it that matters.

    Pentax's K-70 is one the best DSLRs on the market.  Not cheap at about $700 just for the body, but it has a lot features that you don't get on other models costing $1,000+. For someone who has no aspirations to becoming a pro or shoot sports/wildlife, it's an incredible camera.

    Shop for a new body at either bhphotovideo.com or adorama instead of amazon.  Both sites allow you to only see what each brand offers without any 3rd-party kits that are often scams.  Buying used, I'd check out keh.com - I've bought from them in the past.  eBay is another option for buying used, but you don't get a 6-month warranty like you do with KEH and returns can be problematic, too.  So unless you know exactly what you want, I'd stick with keh or the used dept of B&H or adorama.

    Pros get great shots of, say, people because they know good composition techniques; how to pose the subjects and how to light the subjects with ambient and/or artificial lighting.  They also know how to process the photos, too.  They do have lenses that help in making great shot such a lens with a very large aperture in the range of f/1.2 ~ f/2.8.  These aperture setting produce an extremely shallow depth of field (DOF - the area that is in focus).  This allows the photographer to blur out the background which makes the subject pop and removes any distractions from the background.  With the 18-55mm allow you to achieve this look?  It'll be okay, but nothing like an f/2.8 (or better) lens.  Fortunately, you can get an inexpensive 50mm f/1.8 for only about $135 new.  The f/1.8 aperture along with the long-ish 50mm focal length, will allow you to get the same blurry backgrounds as a $2,500 pro lens.  Sure, it won't be as sharp, but that really doesn't matter that much, especially when posting to social media where your customers are looking at the images on the tiny LCD screens of their phones.

    The exception to gear not mattering, is wildlife and sports.  In these situations, both the camera and lens need to focus very quickly and accurately.  For nature and portraits, you simply don't need such tech, which is why an entry-level model would be more than good enough for your stated needs.

    • ...Show all comments
    • 2 months agoReport

      It's a first time shooter. Bokeh shouldn't be the focus, learning the controls, learning what they like to shoot. Buying a DSLR for a first time shooter is like buying a racecar for a first time driver.

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  • Anonymous
    2 months ago

    You don't need or want a DSLR. A micro 4/3rds system will suit you better.

    Fullframe DSLRs are going to be big, heavy, and expensive... it's more than you need as a first time shooter and won't be as enjoyable learning how to shoot with one.

    • Sumi
      Lv 7
      2 months agoReport

      M43 format cameras a good because they're lighter, smaller, and cheaper than APS-C models like a Canon or Nikon.  But since they use short focal lengths due to their smaller sensor, it's harder to get blurred backgrounds for portraits. Possible, but more difficult and costlier.

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  • 2 months ago

    For learning? Doesn't really matter, there are no actually bad DSLRs.

    In some cases, a lens will come bundled with the camera. Once you have a little experience and know what you actually want/need, though, you'd ususally skip the kit lens and buy a body and the lens(es) you want seperately (unless you can get a kit that includes the lens you want at a good price).

    Used camera is a good idea - if it comes with a warranty. There are reputable online shops for that kind of stuff, but it would help if you told us in which country you are living.

    Professional photographers have a lot of experience, possibly some training, and they (should) know exactly what they're doing. Yes, they usually use editing (or post-processing) software, but that software can't put anything in the picture if it wasn't there when they took it.

    If they print their pictures at all, they use a printer (and matching paper) that is designed for photo printing. If they want to print good pictures, they would most likely have them printed at a professional service that doesn't print but exposes the pictures onto real photographic paper. Only a larger business will have their own machinery for that - those things are expensive, and require one or two people who do nothing else.

    • Essence2 months agoReport

      I'm in the U.S

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