With the advent of the digital camera and its abundance of features to make photography even easier to get into, there’s never been a better time to turn your hobby into something more serious, should you so wish. Depending on your own preference, whether it’s simply taking pictures at family get-togethers or becoming a freelance photographer and getting paid for your prints, you’ll want to ensure you have the best camera for you. With digital cameras, there are two main choices, one for the amateur and one for serious photographer.
· Rangefinder – this is the camera best suited to someone who merely wishes to photograph as a hobby, or at the very most be on the fringes of amateur photography. The great thing about rangefinders is they do exactly what the camera name stands for; it will automatically focus on whatever you’re photographing and give you the best picture it can automatically. You don’t have to worry about distance to the shot, or lighting – a rangefinder will do this for you.
· SLR – or Single Lens Reflex camera. This is more similar to the traditional still frame cameras before digital came along, and the one that serious amateurs and professional photographers are more likely to use. Giving you much more control over how the picture is taken, an SLR camera will allow you to focus on exactly what you wish to photograph, whether that be in the forefront or the back of the main picture. It will also allow you to frame a picture better, and use macro and long lenses too.
Like any competing product, there are cons as well as the pros already mentioned with both cameras. For instance a rangefinder, while making life easier in many ways, may not be able to remove lens flare from a photograph’s subject; and it also reduces the amount of control you have over focus, especially in action shots like a sports or auto racing even.
An SLR camera, whilst offering many advantages over the rangefinder when it comes to options available, is usually a lot larger and more heavy than a rangefinder; it also has much faster shutter speeds, meaning that once again at sporting or fast-paced events, you will not miss out on some of the more spectacular shots.
The choice between rangefinder and SLR are pretty wide, and the reasons for a particular photographer using a certain camera type are fairly pronounced. If you’re unsure, there is a vast amount of information online. You can either use a search engine such as Google to bring up the pros and cons of both cameras, or visit dedicated photography and camera manufacturers websites, like Canon and Nikon for example, where you will find all the information you need to join this wonderful and rewarding hobby.