To pick out what I believe the best cameras are in each one of these categories, I spent countless hours researching different websites gathering just as much information as possible to find the best camera in each category. My research includes considering customer testimonials on Amazon, Adorama and BH Photo Video, reading professional reviews from DPreview, Imaging-Learning resource and Steve’s Digicams, and reading several online web forums and message boards. best tripod for nikon dslr Of course I’ll add my OWN personal opinion in the mixture, also. Oh, an instant note… if there’s one thing to remember when shopping for new a camcorder, it’s that megapixels DO NOT MATTER. These big camera organizations boast about getting the most megapixels, trying to use it as a selling point, when they really don’t matter. Multiple resources online will say the same. Let’s start, shall we?
Best Compact Budget Point-and-Shoot
Staying under the $200 mark, and from the research I did, this little gem may take one heck of an image, along with HD video, too! That is right, this tiny guy has 720p (1280 x 720 pixels) High Definition video. Something that is rarely observed in a camera this cheap. From what I learn while researching, this camera will take good quality photos for the price. The only drawback on it I came across online is really a slightly more grainy photo due to the 14MP censor. Besides that, people think itâs great for the simplicity, pocket-able size and very good price-to-feature value. Other features add a large 2.7-inch LCD display, optical image stabilization, a broad 28mm equivalent lens (I love wide angle lenses), HDMI end result, and Smart Car. I head plenty of good things about smart Automobile. From what Canon says, it’ll “intelligently select between 22 distinct predefined settings.” Oh, also it comes in HOT PINK! Definitely not that I care… After investigating this class of camera all night, the general consensus is that Canon creates awesome compact budget point-and-shoots. You will end up satisfied with some of their budget models, like the SD1400IS. I have yet to find an awful one.
Best Compact Enthusiast Point-and-Shoot
Okay, now in my own honest opinion, it is a no-brainer. The prior version, the Canon S90, was a massive strike. And the Canon S95 improves upon it. After all seriously! For a camera under $400, it has 720p HD training video (with stereo sound!), a super bright f/2.0 lens, RAW mode (my favorite), a broad 28mm equivalent zoom lens and HDMI output. Those are simply a few features. The best part, and the part which makes the S95 the very best enthusiast point-and-shoot camera, may be the control ring. This thing helps it be a breeze to regulate focus, exposure, ISO, white harmony, and pretty much all the manual controls. It really has everything a surveillance camera enthusiast would want in a point-and-shoot, and much more! Let’s see… AUTO ISO, Color yRGB histograms, bracketing, a steel body, and crap tons of gimmicks and useless modes. In addition, it comes with an HDR mode. I’d never use it, but I guess it works pretty good. It takes three consecutive shots and merges them together for you personally. You can then edit them later on your computer. I, however, think it is rather lame because all of the important features are locked out, such as exposure and white equilibrium. And HDR on a point-and-shoot? What has this planet come to. Just buy this camera. Seriously. In all honesty I didn’t really do much research on other cams in its category, because once I realized Canon was generating the S95, it had been going be a hit. Sure you can find other good enthusiast cameras on the market, but none which are nearly as awesome because the Canon S95 for exactly the same price and size!
Canon G12? Large and bulky at a price of around $500.
Panasonic Lumix LX5? Still larger, and still more expensive. Price? Around $450.
I think I proved my point. Needless to say this is just my estimation. I’m certain others will disagree with me.
Best Entry-Level DSLR
The Nikon D3100 is certainly another obvious buy if you’re looking to get an electronic SLR. At around, or under, $700, you obtain one heck of a surveillance camera (with lens!) that’s jam-packed full of features for the price. It’s also Nikon’s very first DSLR to feature full 1080p HD video. I want to make clear why I picked it as the best entry-level DSLR. To begin with, it comes with a very good kit lens, the 18-55mm AF-S VR, that is known to be an excellent all-around kit lens. It’s sharpened, has VR (Vibration Reduction) can focus very close – almost macro like – and has Nikon’s Silent Wave Motor which gives it fast, tranquil autofocus. Everything I read seemed to be positive, except for the casual “bad duplicate.” The images the D3100 pumps out are so in close proximity the qualified Nikon D3 and D700 in good light, you could never tell the variation in a side-by-side comparison! Superior ISO on the D3100 is great, considering it isn’t a full-frame camera. I’d say it’s just as good Nikon D300s I own regarding high ISO. Put simply, don’t be scared to shoot at ISO 1600. In-fact, ensure it is your friend! The viewfinder in the D3100 is obvious and distraction free. Why by that is it doesn’t have as much clutter moving on in the viewfinder. This will make it simpler to compose shots. Also, it is a small, ultra-light and portable DSLR weighing in at 505 g (1lb 1.8 oz.) This can be a plus to some, a negative to others. For me personally, I could go either way. Other features add a large rear 3-inch LCD, 11 Autofocus Points, Vehicle Distortion Correction, and Nikon’s different EXPEED 2 image processing engine. There are few (very few) things that the D3100 is lacking, though, in comparison to higher end cameras; You can only use lenses which have a built in motor such as for example Nikon’s AF-S lenses (other zoom lens makers have similar lenses) since the D3100 has no motor drive, there’s only 1 manual preset WB memory position, you do not get any depth-of-discipline preview, and there is absolutely no Kelvin White Balance setting. If you are in the market for an entry-level Digital SLR, this is the time to buy. And I recommend the Nikon D3100. And so do thousands of others.
Best Semi-Pro DSLR
Nikon’s newest DSLR, the D7000, can be one of the greatest in its class. Having a completely new and amazing User Definable Settings (U1, U2) right on the function selector dial, these very useful shortcuts let you set, store and change your cams setting and never have to go deep in to the menu system! I’m envious. I’d like my D300S to possess this. Actually, I’m considering getting the D7000 because of this feature alone. There are other features I, among others (from what I saw countless times) love about this camera, too, such as for example:
Full 1080p HI-DEF video
Light in weight, but still ergonomically comfortable
Best-in-class high ISO photos
Quiet… Very quiet functioning…Shhh…
Ground-breaking 2,016-Segment RGB Meter
Superior weather and dust sealing
Six fps continuous shooting around 100 shots
New EXPEED 2 image processing
39 autofocus points with nine cross-type sensors
So as you can view, this camera is a bargain for its price, that is around $1200 (body only.) My research on the D7000 wasn’t as comprehensive as others in it’s class, because of the fact it just got released. And people are having trouble finding it; it’s always sold out! I have yet to read ANYTHING bad on the camera. All I could find is that it could only bracket three exposures rather than the 5-9 that some other cameras can do. Folks are raving concerning the fast autofocus, and incredible metering due to the different 2,016-Segment RGB Meter. The Nikon D7000 is already a smash hit during this article. It’s all sold out. Not surprising to me, since it’s just as good, if not much better than the Nikon D300s that is $300-$400 more. Now in the event that you excuse me, I have to go buy this camera.
Best Full Frame DSLR – TIE
Canon 5D Mark II and Nikon D700
After hours of analysis, I was determined to choose either the 5D Mark II or the D700 because the best professional full body DSLR. One or the other. Definitely not both. Well, after those hrs of research I did, I failed. My last verdict is definitely that you can’t go wrong with either of these stunning full frame DSLRs. They both provide breathtaking photos, even at high ISOs. Plus they both have excellent build quality that may last you years upon ages. But what are the differences