Questions You Must Ask Before Buying Your Next Camera

Deciding on which camera to buy is one of the most important decisions a photographer has to make. With so much on the line, it's vital to ask yourself these questions before you splash the cash.

For many photographers, the camera itself will be one of the most expensive investments they will have to make. It's for this reason, that a lot of thought has to be done before making such a commitment. But where should you start? You could ask your peers, strangers on the internet, or maybe the salesperson at the camera shop. While I'm sure you would get some perfectly good suggestions from those options just mentioned, do any of them really know your abilities, needs, and preferences as a photographer? This week, the team over at B&H has released an interesting webinar on this very subject with Bronx-based photographer J. Shotti.

The presentation starts with what I think is one of the most important concepts to consider when it comes to buying anything. That is the importance of asking yourself what you really want from the purchase. The video goes on to talk about the main features to look for and how big of a role your workflow should play when it comes to picking out a camera. Shotti makes some great points about how the right camera can nurture creativity while the wrong one can impede it. Those hoping this webinar would feature a checklist of technical requirements will be disappointed. This video is looking at the bigger picture when it comes to which camera is right for you. Things like ecosystems, supporting products, community, and simplicity take precedence over megapixels or high iso values. Shotti goes on to talk about his particular choice of camera and how his desire to spend more time engaging with his subjects was a major factor in his particular choice.

I think we've all been guilty of following the crowds from time-to-time. Something as individual as which camera to buy is one of those occasions when doing what everyone else is doing could seriously harm your practice. The video is a relaxed and accessible look at what to consider when it comes to buying a camera. Bookmark and revisit this video every time you are about to decide which camera you should buy.

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Paul Parker is a commercial and fine art photographer. On the rare occasion he's not doing photography he loves being outdoors, people watching, and writing awkward "About Me" statements on websites...

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Please Note: No camera sensors were harmed in the making of this image I promise!

I think it's unfortunate that camera buying decisions today are usually based on web reviews and feature comparisons - rather than ergonomics and 'feel'.

Couldn't agree more Jim. It's why I think being armed with the right questions is a better approach. What is "good" for one photographer may not be for another. Thanks for stopping by!