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What Digital Camera Should I Buy?

Looking for the right digital camera for your photography business or personal use? We've narrowed it down for you here by listing the most popular Canon and Nikon digital cameras. We've also included a few different levels that vary from entry use to the most advanced. This is a great way to narrow down the right digital camera depending on how much you are looking to invest. There are a variety of lenses that go with the digital cameras, too.  We hope you enjoy this list and find it helpful. Please feel free to bookmark or pin this for future use.

Canon Equipment 

1. Just Starting Out

Lens options:

2. Going Pro

Lens options:

3. Rolling in the Dough

Prime Lens:

Zoom:

 

Nikon Equipment

1. Just Starting Out

  • Nikon D5100 (Retail: $600, Used: $380) – 16.2 MP, cropped sensor

Lens options:

2. Going Pro

  • Nikon D7000 (Retail: $900, Used: $625) – 16.2 MP, cropped sensor
  • Nikon D800 (Retail: $2800, Used: $2300) – 36.3 MP, full frame

Lens options:

3. Rolling in the Dough

  • Nikon D700 (Retail: $3500, Used: $1500) – 12.1 MP, full frame
  • Nikon D4 (Retail: $5996, Used: $4800) – 16.2 MP, full frame

Prime:

Zoom:

Download our Gift Guide and enjoy direct links here as well!  

Cropped Sensor vs. Full Frame:

  • Canon has three different sensor sizes: full frame (EF), 1.3x (EF-S), and 1.6x (APS-C)
  • Nikon has two different sensor sizes: full frame (FX) and 1.5x (DX)
  • Many people don’t like the term “full frame” because it’s “full” compared to what? Full frame bodies typically refer to a sensor that is 24mm x 36mm.
  • Full frame sensors have better image quality and do better at higher ISOs. Cropped sensor bodies, on the other hand, are more lightweight, and typically much cheaper.
  • Be aware that some lenses work with one type of body, but not another, so do your research before you begin buying. You may want to purchase lenses that will work with both cropped and full frame bodies so when it’s time to upgrade your camera, you won’t have to get rid of all your lenses as well.

Focal Lengths:

  • Wide Angle: best for reception venue, photojournalistic perspective, dance floor action, or a portrait lens best for large groups or getting a wide shot of the scenery. There may be some distortion near the edges. Examples: 24mm, 16-35mm, 30mm, 35mm
  • Portrait: best for portraits (obviously), small groups, single subjects, details, or an overall “walking around” lens. Examples: 50mm, 85mm
  • Telephoto: best for shooting from a distance, wedding ceremonies, some portraits, being “incognito” at a wedding reception, or nature photography. Examples: 135mm, 70-200mm
  • Macro: best for details such as rings, cufflinks, jewelry, or cake, and the occasional portrait. Examples: 60mm Macro, 100mm Macro, 105mm Macro

*Special thanks to Kelly from Kelly Benton Photography for putting this list together for us. Affiliate links have been used on this page.  We hope you enjoy the recommendations provided.  

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