You’re thinking of buying an SLR (single lens reflex) camera, but you’re not sure which model to choose. Don’t worry, you’re not the first person to face such a dilemma. When buying one of these cameras it is important to do your research as this is a choice for life. To make this process easier, we have prepared this complete shopping guide for you.
Here you can learn about the most important aspects of the exciting world of SLR cameras. With this guide you will discover all the advantages they offer and, of course, the disadvantages. Additionally, we will provide you with a series of purchase criteria so that you can make a confident decision with as much information as possible.
- 1 Key Facts
- 2 Ranking: The best SLR cameras on the Australian market
- 3 Shopping Guide: Everything you should know about SLR cameras
- 3.1 What are SLR cameras exactly?
- 3.2 How does a reflex camera work?
- 3.3 What are the advantages of SLR cameras?
- 3.4 What are the disadvantages of reflex cameras?
- 3.5 Is it worth buying a reflex camera?
- 3.6 Who should buy a reflex camera?
- 3.7 What is the importance of a reflex camera lens?
- 3.8 What modes does a an SLR have available?
- 3.9 What types of stabilisers do SLRs use?
- 3.10 What accessories are needed for a reflex camera?
- 3.11 What care do reflex cameras require?
- 4 Shopping Criteria
- 5 Summary
- SLR, or ‘reflex’ cameras, allow you to take higher quality photographs than compact digital cameras, as they offer better control over the different parameters that can be configured when capturing an image. However, as they are much more technical and specialised, their price is also higher.
- Given their superb performance, these cameras are ideal both for photography enthusiasts with advanced knowledge and for those who would like to get started in the professional photography industry.
- Equally or more important than the body of the camera is the lens you select. Often, the lens that comes standard with the camera is an entry-level piece of equipment, so over time it’s a good idea to buy a better one.
Ranking: The best SLR cameras on the Australian market
In the following section we present to you the ranking that we have prepared with the five best reflex cameras currently available on the Australian market. We have prepared this list by trying to include the most varied products available, but always choosing products that offer very good value for money.
No. 1: Canon EOS 200D
For the number one product on our ranking, we introduce to you the Canon EOS 200D, the most compact and easy to use DSLR camera on the Australian market. With this camera you can actually learn how to become a photographer with Canon’s new guided display, which has simple, easy to understand onscreen photo tips to help you learn how to take better photos.
Looking at the technical aspects of this camera, it features a 24.2 Megapixel CMOS APS-C Sensor, a 3.0-inch vari-angle touch screen and bluetooth connectivity that allows you to connect easily to your smartphone or tablet. If you’re looking for a solid, “all-rounder” DSLR camera at an affordable price, the Canon EOS 200D is a great option.
No. 2: KODAK PIXPRO AZ652
The brand new Kodak Pixpro AZ652 is an SLR camera that offers astounding 65X optical zoom and exceptional power, yet at a very affordable price. This camera features a top quality 20 megapixel BSI CMOS sensor, 5fps multi-burst function, 24mm wide angle lens and a large 3″ articulating LCD screen for viewing photos and HD videos clearly.
The photos produced by this SLR camera are of razor sharp detail, whether it is nature shot, a portrait photo or a high-speed sports photo. With the Kodak Pixpro AZ652, you will be able to share your moments instantly with friends and family with the easy-to-use Wi-Fi connectivity function that comes standard with this camera.
No. 3: Canon EOS 80D
This DSLR is by far the most professional camera in our list of the top 5 SLR cameras on the Australian market. The Canon EOS 80D is a powerful, versatile and responsive DSLR camera that will allow you to explore your creative passions. This camera has the ability to capture sports, portraits, landscapes, street and travel photos to an exceptional level of quality and professionalism. With the Canon EOS 80D you’ll easily be able tell your story with unparalleled perfection.
This camera features Canon’s most advanced auto-focus system to provide fast and accurate auto focus when shooting stills or fast-moving objects. If you prefer to use the LCD screen rather than the viewfinder, simply tap the LCD screen to focus and take the perfect shot. With this DSLR camera from Canon you’ll be well and truly setup for any upcoming photo opportunity.
No. 4: Nikon D3500
The Nikon D3500 is a fast, responsive and simple to use DSLR camera that is a great price on Amazon Australia. The 24.2 megapixel DX-format CMOS sensor with no optical low-pass filter, allows the D3500 to capture images that make the most of the superior Nikon lenses. This DSLR camera supports a broad ISO range of 100–25600 for sensitivities that enables you to capture dimly lit indoor scenes and night landscapes at high sensitivities with hand-held shooting.
With a superior battery, you can capture up to 1550 shots per battery charge that allows you to concentrate on capturing beautiful photos, without worrying that the battery. This is especially useful at special events such as weddings or while traveling when charging batteries can be difficult.
No. 5: Nikon COOLPIX B500
The final camera on the list of the top 5 SLR cameras on the Australian market is a “hybrid” model camera that offers far more functionality than a basic “point and shoot” camera, yet doesn’t compromise on size. This is a model of camera that is increasing in popularity among Australian photographers for it’s versatility, yet low price. Featuring a 16 Megapixel BSI CMOS sensor, a 40x optical zoom lens and a 80x dynamic zoom, you’ll be able to shoot beautiful landscapes with this camera, whilst also easily capture closeups or portraits.
With a fantastic video recording mode, you can record full HD 1080p video recording at 30 fps (frames per second), to capture high quality video. This digital camera includes an Australian warranty and support to ensure any technically issues will be resolved quickly and hassle-free.
Shopping Guide: Everything you should know about SLR cameras
When buying a reflex camera, it is essential that you consider a number of important aspects before making the purchase. Don’t forget that there are different models of SLR and that each one is designed for a different use. With this in mind, we will attempt to answer the most common questions among buyers so that you are well informed prior to making the purchase.
What are SLR cameras exactly?
Reflex cameras are specifically categorised because they have a mirror that reflects (hence the name) the light that enters through the lens and transmits it to the optical viewfinder through a prism. The main advantage of reflex cameras is that what you see is through the viewfinder is exactly what will appear in the photograph. In addition, the advantaged technology they use also makes it possible to capture higher quality images than a simple digital camera or mobile phone camera.
How does a reflex camera work?
When the picture is taken the mirror is quickly moved to a horizontal position to allow the light to pass to the sensor. When this occurs, the lens diaphragm is closed and the shutter is opened to allow the sensor to be exposed to light. The shutter then closes, the diaphragm reopens, and the mirror returns to its initial position. The result is usually a high quality photo that is displayed on the screen of the camera.
What are the advantages of SLR cameras?
Reflex cameras also allow you to set parameters manually, giving you more control over things like shutter speed, aperture, ISO and white balance. They also allow you to reduce the ‘noise’ when taking pictures in low-light conditions. The final advantage is they are usually ergonomically designed.
What are the disadvantages of reflex cameras?
Is it worth buying a reflex camera?
Who should buy a reflex camera?
What is the importance of a reflex camera lens?
With all this in mind, it is no wonder that the lens is a key element when taking photographs. This is why it’s best to choose a good quality lens. Keep in mind that most lenses that are included with the camera are usually quite basic or entry-level.
What modes does a an SLR have available?
The manual or semi-manual modes are for full control of the camera. Of course, they are also the most complicated to use but can potentially provide you with the best quality photos. In order to use these modes correctly, it is necessary to master at least some basic photography concepts. Remember that it is in manual mode that you can capture the most impressive photos.
What types of stabilisers do SLRs use?
During these situations, if the camera does not have correct image stabilisation, the image may be blurry or distorted. To correct this from happening, SLR cameras can feature one of two image stabilisation systems: the optical stabiliser or the mechanical stabiliser. The following table explains each system further:
|Optical stabiliser||Mechanical stabiliser|
|Uses||This is usually used by Nikon, Canon, Panasonic and Leica.||It has been adopted by camera manufacturers such as Olympus and Sony, among others.|
|Description||Consists of a displacement system located within the lens. These lenses detect and correct camera movements automatically.||Image stabilisation is achieved through the adjustment of the image sensor.|
|Advantage||Offers the advantage of being specifically tailored for each lens, although you will need a seperate stabiliser for each lens.||Since stabilisation takes place in the camera body, the camera remains stable regardless of which lens is being used.|
|Performance||Usually offers higher performance.||Overall, the performance is slightly lower.|
What accessories are needed for a reflex camera?
Among the first, there are the memory cards and, of course, a good lens to replace the one that comes with the camera. After these two purchases, other accessories you should consider are tripods, external flashes, filters, extra batteries and even external/remote triggers.
What care do reflex cameras require?
When owning a camera of this type for a long period of time, it is often necessary to clean the reflex camera sensor. This can be done by a trained service technician or by yourself. If you plan on cleaning it yourself, you should take special care to ensure that you do not to damage the equipment. The final special care requirement of reflex camera is the battery. If you know that you are not going to use the camera for a while, it is better to remove the battery.
When it comes time to purchase your new reflex camera, it is important that you consider a number of purchase criteria. The following criteria will help you in the selection process, so that you can make a confident decision. We also hope that this criteria will serve as a guide for you to find the perfect quality-price ratio of your purchase.
- Sensitivity (ISO)
- Viewfinder and screen
- Video Recording
There is no doubt that the intended use of the camera is the first criterion you should consider carefully. Similarly, it is important to consider whether you actually need a SLR camera. If you think that you are simply going to use it in automatic mode and mainly to keep some souvenir photos of your holidays, you might be interested in a simple digital camera or polaroid camera.
If you are buying a reflex camera to join the world of photography, it is important that you choose a camera that is specially designed for beginners. However, if you are an experienced photographer then you probably need it for professional use, so you’ll be looking for a camera with a lot better performance and control.
Somehow, the sensor is the heart and soul of a camera, as it is the part that is responsible for capturing light. In the case of a sensor, size is a fundamental aspect. The larger the sensor, the more information it will receive and you will be able to capture a higher quality image. Keep this in mind as it is a very important aspect.
Currently, most SLR cameras include an APS-C sensor, mainly used by Canon, Nikon and Sony, or the 4/3 sensor, used by Olympus, Panasonic, Leica and Kodak. However, some cameras have the full-frame (35mm) sensor. The full-frame is a larger sensor and is usually available in professional photography equipment.
When talking about the resolution of cameras, you often think about megapixels. In general, the more megapixels, the higher the resolution and the more details the image will have. However, the quality of the image does not depend solely on the megapixels. As previously explained, the size of the sensor is equally, if not more, important.
A camera with a larger sensor will offer a larger area per pixel and therefore more quality and sensitivity. In any case, you should also keep in mind that a picture with more megapixels will take up more size in terms of storage. This will require a storage card with more space and more room on your computer for storing all your images.
The ISO value of a camera indicates the sensitivity of the sensor to light. If the camera sensor has a high value, around 3,200, you can take photos in low-light conditions. On the other hand, a lower ISO value, around 100, is suitable for taking pictures in good lighting conditions.
However, a very high ISO value leads to much more ‘noise’ in the image, as more light enters the lens. As a result, you need to know how to use a camera with a high ISO value in order to capture quality images. Generally speaking, with a wider ISO range you will be able to capture images in a wider range of lighting conditions.
Viewfinder and screen
Through the viewfinder of the camera you can see the photograph before capturing the image, hence it is vitally important. An optical viewfinder will allow you to see what you are going to photograph thanks to a system of mirrors that reflect the image into the viewfinder. A screen or electronic viewfinder will show you the image on an LCD or OLED screen.
Not all viewfinders are the same. There is actually a big difference between those available. The size and clarity of the image seen through the viewfinder can vary greatly depending on the model. That’s why it’s a good idea to try out a few different options before choosing the camera you’re going to buy. Ultimately, the viewfinder will have a fundamental influence on the images you capture.
It is increasingly common for SLRs to have the ability to record video in high definition. This extra feature is never unnecessary. If the camera you are going to purchase has video recording, you should check what resolution it uses: HD, Full HD or 4K. Our advice is to chose a camera with recoding abilities of at least Full HD.
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The best known brands of reflex cameras are Canon and Nikon. Besides these two superpowers, Sony and Kodak are also quite prestigious manufacturers and offer high quality cameras. Remember that once you choose a brand of camera, you will most likely be linked to this brand for life.
We say this because the accessories you buy, such as the expensive lenses or tripod, are usually only compatible with that brand. Although, as in almost everything in life, there are exceptions. Brands like Sigma or Tamron have lenses that are compatible with Canon and Nikon equipment, but they have a lower price.
With reflex cameras it is possible to take higher quality photographs if you have little know-how. These cameras offer a high degree of control over the various parameters when capturing an image. This is a significant advantage because it means that they are not as accessible to the general public or as easy to use as compact cameras.
However choosing the right SLR is not an easy task. Aspects such as the intended use, the manufacturer, the sensor, resolution and ISO sensitivity need to be taken into account and assessed carefully. To make it easier for you, throughout this guide we have made a detailed analysis of each aspect. With this, you can make a confident decision when buying your new SLR camera.
Finally, if you think that this article has been useful to you in your selection process, you can leave us a comment or share it through the different social networks.
(Source of featured image: Bartolomiej Pietrzyk: 102106313/ 123rf.com)