So you’re ready to buy a digital single-lens reflex camera – more commonly referred to as a DSLR. Whether it’s your very first one or you’re advancing to a professional model, get ready for greater creative control and, of course, more stunning results. Here’s how to make it happen.
USER LEVEL: BEGINNER
Your experience: Your best photos have been shot almost exclusively with your phone or an old point-and-shoot, and it’s a tad embarrassing.
What to look for: An entry-level, easy-to-use camera geared toward what you’ll be shooting (portraits, action shots, video, etc.). It’s crucial to research which brands cater to your specific needs, and this guide is a good start.
Expect to spend: Less than $500
Best models for you: Canon Canon EOS 700D (Rebel T5i), EOS 750D (Rebel T6i), Canon EOS 1200D (Rebel T5), Nikon D3300, Nikon D3200, Nikon D5500, Nikon D5300, Pentax K-50
USER LEVEL: INTERMEDIATE
Your experience: You’re extremely comfortable with your entry-level DSLR, hungry for sharper motion shots, and ready to pony up a bit more cash.
What to look for: A mid-range camera with more power, robustness, and control than your first DSLR. Stick with the same brand as your first DSLR, if you were happy with it, so you can reuse lenses.
Expect to spend: About $500 to $1,400
Best models for you: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Canon EOS 70D, Canon EOS 760D (Rebel T6s), Nikon D7200, Nikon D7100, Pentax K-S2, Pentax K-3 II, Sony Alpha a77 Mark II
USER LEVEL: ADVANCED
Your experience: You’re officially making the leap from enthusiast to professional. Congrats!
What to look for: An expert-level camera with state-of-the-art imaging technology, top-notch performance, and easy customization. Try out the latest version of your mid-range camera, which should have improved image quality and faster continuous shooting speeds, among other features.
Expect to spend: $1,000 and up
Best models for you: Canon EOS 5DS, Canon EOS 6D, Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Nikon D750, Nikon D810, Sony A77 II
Note: It’s impossible to sum up the camera-purchasing experience in one blog post. Research is your best friend! Ask friends and family members for recommendations, test out models at a trusted retailer, and do your due diligence online throughout the entire process to find the model that has the best features for you.
No matter which camera—and assorted lenses—you end up buying, every piece of equipment needs to be protected. Click here to learn how SIMPLR can cover all of your digital gear.