- Nikon Lens Pen Cleaning System
- Zeiss Pre-Moistened Lens Cloths Wipes
- Canon Optical Digital Camera and Lens Cleaning Kit
- Giottos AA1900 Rocket Air Blaster Large
- Microfiber Lens Cleaning Cloth
- Giottos CL1001 Large Cleaning Kit with Small Rocket Blaster
- Hoodman Lens Cleanse Natural Cleaning Kit
Photography is an expensive venture, and the further you get into it, the more expensive it gets. So after you've spent months and months saving to invest in something new, you don't want to make that decision lightly. One of the biggest questions that comes up is whether it's best to invest in a new camera body or a new lens. This is especially the case for photographers who have bought an entry-level DSLR and kit lens.
Advantages of buying a new camera body
Megapixel count is typically a big selling point for digital cameras. The more megapixels, the higher the resolution, and the bigger you can print. Though having more megapixels doesn't mean your images are better, it can make the difference when doing work for clients. If you need to make very large photographic prints or your client demands a certain size/resolution, then you may need a more expensive camera that provides it. For the most part however, DSLRs will provide you with enough resolution for basic printing needs and web usage. So unless you're doing high-end professional work, any modern day DSLR will be fine.
Low-light performance is an aspect that is often used to judge the quality of a camera because it is one that really pushes the limits of the camera. Point-and-shoots and cheap DSLRs typically generate a lot of noise in low-light conditions whereas the top-end models allow you to use ISO levels upwards of 6400 with much less noise.
High speed continuous shooting is another common feature on the more pricier DSLRs. Most entry level cameras have a max continuous shooting speed of 2-4 fps (frames per second) whereas professional cameras can shoot up to 10 fps. This is very handy if you're shooting sports or other fast-paced events.
Besides these things, there are also many features that professional DSLRs include that entry-level cameras do not. For instance, the Nikon D7000 give you the option of using the pop-up flash as a commander to control slave flashes. The entry-level Nikons do not. Many pro cameras also include more memory slots, customizable modes, and battery grip add-ons.
Advantages of buying a new lens
Investing in a new high-quality lens will give you...well, better quality. Your images will see improved sharpness, contrast, and color tone. These things are very important when selling your images. Big publications and stock photo agencies are sticklers on sharp images. A 24MP camera won't do you any good if your images are soft and low in contrast.
Good lenses are also faster in two ways. First of all, they focus faster. This is important for shooting sports and grabbing those split-second moments. Shooting 10fps isn't going to help you if your subject is out of focus. The second way these lenses are faster is in maximum aperture. Good lenses will have typically have max apertures of f/4-f/2.8 for zooms and f/2.8-f/1.2 for primes. This means shallower depth-of-field and better image quality/faster shutter speeds in low-light conditions without increasing ISO levels.
While it seems that there are a lot more advantages to buying a new camera body, they are all improvements on how you can capture an image rather than the quality of the image (except for the improved noise performance). With a new body, you can capture photos at larger resolutions, at high-speeds, using your built-in flash as a commander, and shoot at higher ISO settings. With a new lens, you can capture images that are sharper, have more contrast, have better color tone, and you have more creative control over the depth-of-field. So when it comes down to it, it's really more a question of “Do you want better functionality or better quality?” Quality is usually the winner. So what if you can't shoot at 10 fps or save your images on two SD cards at once. Photographers are resourceful, and you can make it work.
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Article by: Spencer Seastrom
Article by: Spencer Seastrom