Entry level photography can be an actual challenge, especially for those who want to obtain great results but have no professional training. It is often said that photography is pure art, but rather than that, the craft is about technique, theoretical knowledge, and mastering dedicated tools properly. Nowadays, phone cameras are way better than what they used to be, which is why investing in a “real” camera might seem useless to some. However, keep in mind that only by using professional gear, you will be able to take professional pictures and call yourself a “photographer”. Specialized gear has multiple benefits, such as increased image quality, exposure control, and performing lenses, which make everything easier, from actually capturing a shot to manipulating and editing the images. So, if you are seriously thinking about investing in this passion here is what you should start with:

Decide on your budget

Realistically speaking, a $1000 budget is the one that will allow you to start focusing on quality devices, rather than the ones you find in the best-rated phones. If you want to go the extra mile and buy some lenses as well, then $1,500 should be an amount large enough for you to get something qualitative and resistant. Of course, the gear you choose and the invested budget depend on what you are planning to do. So before you purchase anything, decide whether you want to be a photographer for products on Amazon, a wedding photographer or a world traveler who captures beautiful pictures.

Know your options

First and foremost, make a brief research before purchasing a camera. No matter what you choose, remember to always buy the most recent version of a device – even one year of distance between two models can make a huge difference. Keep these in mind:

Type: Understanding the differences between mirrorless, point and shoot and DSLR is crucial for you to make the correct decision.

Size: While mirrorless cameras are smaller and easier to carry around, DSLRs are more robust and give you a safe feeling while using them. But what will eventually dictate the size of your gear is usage: if you are planning to travel a lot, then probably a small or medium-sized device is the ideal choice.

Focus Points: Nowadays, performing cameras can have up to 400 focus points, unlike years ago when they had no more than 10. This increases photo quality, through faster, more accurate focusing.

Sensor resolution: 20-24 megapixel cameras should be a safe choice for beginners, enabling them to get quality RAW files that are up to 24 MB.

Give accessories their due attention

Besides the camera per se, there are other gear components you need in order to perform as a photographer. Among these, lenses are probably the most popular and important. When buying, look at the aperture (the lower the f/, the better), size and focal length (experts recommend prime lens). Other mandatory accessories are SD cards for storage and backup drives, to make sure you never lose pictures you did not have the chance to use yet.

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