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  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2009

    NEED ADVICE: Cheapest but efficient DSLR enabling one to expand photography horizons

    I only have a compact digital camera and I am extremely interested in expanding my horizons in photography. I will not be able to achieve this if I forever stick with the camera I have. I need to buy a DSLR..problem is, my budget is VERY limited.

    So, I need real good advice:

    * What is the cheapest DSLR yet efficient enough for one to be able to expand her photography horizons?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009

    Re: NEED ADVICE: Cheapest but efficient DSLR enabling one to expand photography horizons

    This is a pretty broad question. Virtually every manufacture that markets dSLRs has low end models that are less costly. What exactly do you mean by "cheap"? What type of subjects do you plan to shoot? Keep in mind that you will also need to purchase lens(es) as well, which can easily add up to costing more than the camera body alone.
    "The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera." - Dorothea Lang


  3. #3
    project forum co-moderator Frog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    wa state

    Re: NEED ADVICE: Cheapest but efficient DSLR enabling one to expand photography horizons

    Welcome to the forums.

    Cheap to one person is expensive to another so it would help if you could give us numbers.
    Another thing to think about is to buy used or preferably refurbished from a reliable dealer.
    You are better off spending money on glass than a body but eventually you'll want a better bady too. Its the photographers curse.....there's always something.
    Keep Shooting!


    Please refrain from editing my photos without asking.

  4. #4
    Be serious Franglais's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Paris, France

    Nikon D40

    The cheapest you're likely to find new is the Nikon D40. It has most of the features of the higher-end models though you often have to hunt around in the menus to find them. It has a great (plastic) lens. And 6 Mpix is enough to do A3 size prints.

    Nikon D800, D7200, Sony RX100m3
    Not buying any more gear this year. I hope

  5. #5
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Northern Territory, Australia

    Re: NEED ADVICE: Cheapest but efficient DSLR enabling one to expand photography horizons

    Seconding Franglais, the D40 (and a kit lens etc) is pretty cheap, and as a first camera I found that it was good for 'expanding my horizons'. It is limited, yes, but in some ways those shortcomings make you into a better photographer in the end. For example, not having Live View makes you actually use it like a camera, and learn it like a photographer. More features are good when you know how to use them, but in my book simplicity and genuine work are the best teachers.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Anbesol's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Re: NEED ADVICE: Cheapest but efficient DSLR enabling one to expand photography horizons

    I would certainly abandon the thought of getting the D40, most of all because its not compatible with a huge chunk of Nikons lens (at least the AF). I would definitely go for a used DSLR, in the various brands you can get the Minolta Maxxum 5D/7D, Sony Alpha 100, Nikon D70/D100, Canon Rebel/10D. Try or, you should be able to find one of those for between $200-$300. Any one of those will be MUCH better than the D40, and cheaper too.

  7. #7
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Salt Lake City, Utah, United States

    There Are No Bad DSLRs

    The truth is, there are no bad DSLRs. If you have a compact camera right now, you can buy any new DSLR and it's going to offer better image quality, more responsiveness, and better long-term flexibility. If your budget is really, really tight take a look at used digital SLRs from reputable sellers. You could buy a Nikon D40, a Canon XTi / 350D, Canon EOS 20D, Sony Alpha A100, etc. - any of those cameras will outperform whatever compact camera you have. Don't worry too much about the specifics. Consider your budget, look at the system you'll be buying into and buy a camera with a lens that you can afford. I don't think you can go wrong.

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