I've been getting a lot of PM's asking me where to get a camera and don't get me wrong here, it's not that I'm tired of answering your guys' PM's but I just want to make something known about what you should know before you go around on the internet searching for a camera.
Moderators please post this next month when you start up the new Photography thread.
1. Make sure the online store you are buying from is legitimate. A LOT and I mean ALOT of online "camera stores" use what is called bait and switch tactics. On their website they will be selling a $700 Digital SLR Camera for only $350 and you will think "Damn, thats a bargain" but it is not. What will happen is they will sell you EXACTLY what is described. You will place your order and what will happen is they will call you to "confirm" your order but what is really happening is they are telling you your camera is coming as the camera only. No charger, battery, manual, etc. It does not come with the accessories the manufacturer usually includes with that camera. And the battery and chargers are usually marked up and ridiculously high prices such as $200 for the battery and $100 for the charger. So if you see a website selling a camera that you very well know costs $800 and they are selling it for only $400 stay away. Canceling your order isn't as easy also, usually they will answer happily but when you tell them you want to cancel your order, they will either do one of three things, put you on hold for a VERY long time, hang up on you, or directly insult you and then hang up on you. And even if they say "alright, we will cancel your order" sometimes they do not and your credit card will still be charged. A good way to check if the store is legitimate is to check their rating on www.resellerratings.com it is website that consumers and customers like you can rate an online retailer whether it was good or horrible.
2. Make sure you know what kind of camera you want. What are you going to use the camera for? If you need a camera to be able to fit in your pocket and be able to take simple snapshots of friends, places and things, a simple point an shoot camera will be fine. Nikon and Canon make great point and shoot digital cameras that sell for fairly low prices and usually they don't take up much space on memory cards either. If you want a camera that will allow you to take very detailed pictures and you are serious about photography a digital SLR is would be good. However, they aren't so cheap seeing as they are pieces of fine machinery. A starter DSLR would run about $500-$700. A professional digital camera runs anywhere from $7,000-$30,000 And you thought collecting shoes was expensive huh? laugh.gif
Here is an example of a simple point and shoot digital camera:
Here is an example of a Digital SLR:
Professional SLR $7,000
Professional Digital Camera $30,000
3. If you want to take photography as a hobby but know nothing about it, go to your local bookstore and buy a book on it. No, I don't mean a book of pictures but a book that informs you about the basic rules and what not of photography such as the rule of thirds, shutter speeds, apertures, etc. Photography is alot of learning and trial and error.
4. What does it mean when the online store says "Body Only"? What that means is the camera does not come with a lens. Since most people who buy DSLR's have their own preference of what goes on their camera some feel that the "kit lens (lens that comes with the camera)" is not enough for them so they usually buy a more expensive lens or just use the lens they are currently using.
These steps lead to this like dinosaur park in South Dakota. I have no idea why South Dakota has a dinosaur park, and I didn't have enough time to stop and read the huge description... i wanted to get to mount rushmore!