Camera beginners: The best camera for beginners in 2023

The Best DSLR for Beginners in 2023

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Photo: Rozette Rago

FYI

Manufacturers have not said that they aren’t developing DSLRs anymore, but if you’re buying a camera for the first time, you should most likely opt for a mirrorless camera.

If you have a set of Canon or Nikon DSLR lenses or know that you prefer an optical viewfinder and don’t want to spend big on a camera, a beginner DSLR could be just the ticket. The Nikon D3500 is our pick for the best DSLR camera for novice photographers because it offers outstanding image quality for its price and a truly useful Guide Mode that helps you learn along the way. It boasts excellent battery life, easy smartphone connectivity, 1080/60p video with silent autofocus, and intuitive controls in a highly portable and lightweight body.

As we explain here, if you don’t already have some DSLR lenses and don’t dislike electronic viewfinders, or plan to frame your photos on a screen the same way you do with your phone, you should look for a mirrorless camera.

Our pick

Nikon D3500

This lightweight, easy-to-use camera offers both great image quality and battery life.

The Nikon D3500’s 24-megapixel sensor can create images with pleasing colors, and its Guide Mode has insightful explanations of camera modes and operations. Its battery lasts far longer than that of most competitors, and it is lightweight for a camera in this category and portable enough to carry anywhere. Connecting the D3500 to your smartphone is easy, which allows you to share what you capture quickly. It shoots 1080/60p video too.

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Upgrade pick

If you’re more into video than stills, or if you prefer composing your shot on a swiveling touchscreen, the Canon Rebel SL3 may be a better, if slightly more expensive, choice for you. The SL3 can shoot 4K video, and its intuitive touchscreen is ideal for beginners, especially if you’re used to working with a smartphone.

Everything we recommend

Our pick

Nikon D3500

This lightweight, easy-to-use camera offers both great image quality and battery life.

Upgrade pick

The research

  • Why you should trust us
  • Who this is for
  • Why not just buy a mirrorless camera?
  • How we picked
  • How we tested
  • Our pick: Nikon D3500
  • Flaws but not dealbreakers
  • Upgrade pick: Canon Rebel SL3
  • The competition

Why you should trust us

I’m a photojournalist, a writer, and a professional photographer, and I have a wide range of experience researching, testing, and writing about photography trends, techniques, and tools—including in my role as mobile-imaging editor at DPReview. I also teach photography to students of all ages, and I have firsthand knowledge of the most common points of confusion for fledgling photographers. I’ve written a few iterations of this guide over the past five years and have hands-on experience with all the top contenders in this category,

Who this is for

If you’re frustrated with the limitations of capturing photos or videos with your smartphone and are interested in learning the ins and outs of how a camera’s settings can affect resulting images, you should consider getting either a beginner-level DSLR or a mirrorless camera.

DSLRs have much larger imaging sensors than budget point-and-shoots and smartphones (which means better performance with less light and the ability to capture a wider range of lights and darks in a single image), more manual controls (to let you fine-tune how your photos will look), and the versatility of interchangeable lenses for different subjects (which provides more options for capturing the perspective you want). They also let you use high-power flashes so you can control your lighting conditions, and most DSLRs today can even record impressive HD video footage—better than your old camcorder—with external microphones for a soundtrack that matches your images. DSLRs even give you more options after you’re done shooting, since they can record what is known as a raw image, a larger type of file that stores more data than a JPEG, which you can edit with Photoshop, Lightroom, or other image-editing software to get the best result possible.

Great budget DSLRs—like our top pick in this guide—can even teach you to be a better photographer, walking you through the process of shooting in various modes by providing helpful hints and guides embedded in their control menus.

Why not just buy a mirrorless camera?

That’s a very, very good question. Choosing between a mirrorless camera and a DSLR might be tough, as they provide very different sets of strengths and weaknesses—and they both take excellent photos. But when deciding you should know that mirrorless cameras are the future and camera makers are putting their resources into developing them rather than trying to make significant advances with DSLRs.

Generally speaking, a mirrorless camera will be significantly smaller and lighter than a DSLR, but with equivalent image quality. Mirrorless cameras tend to have more modern feature sets that include touchscreens, Wi-Fi integration, and focus assistance when shooting video, and they generally run on the more affordable side. But they tend to have a battery that lasts hundreds of fewer shots. Their small size means shooting for long periods, which can potentially be uncomfortable for your hands; you have fewer lenses to choose from; and you’re limited to electronic viewfinders (some people prefer optical ones), if you even get a viewfinder at all. If you came of age using digital cameras and you’re accustomed to holding your camera out from your body and looking at the screen, rather than up against your eye, you might not miss a viewfinder. And a portable, light camera that you’re likely to take with you everywhere could be a better match than a bulkier DSLR, which you might end up just leaving on a shelf. Honestly, for a beginner, a smaller, lighter mirrorless camera makes a lot of sense over a DSLR.

However, if you have some past experience with Canon or Nikon systems, or some DSLR lenses at your disposal, it might make sense to continue down that path rather than learning a new camera language altogether or building your lens library from the ground up. Or maybe you prefer a more sizable camera in hand.

If you’re interested in what your options are, have a look at “What Camera Should I Buy?” for advice.

How we picked

Photo: Rozette Rago

We spent hours researching DSLRs that had been identified as top budget picks by the top photography sites in the world—DxOMark, DPReview, Photography Blog, CNET, and more. We also pored over customer reviews on Amazon, B&H, Adorama, and other top retailers, and we drew on our own years of experience with trends in photography.

An entry-level DSLR has to be able to do a lot these days. Here are some of the things we looked for:

  • Excellent image quality: Images should be sharp and clear (even when shot in low light), have accurate-looking colors, and have a wide dynamic range (so that you can see detail across your image, in both the darkest shadows and brightest highlights).
  • Easy to use: Even someone who has never tried a complex camera before should be able to quickly learn how to handle it. The best beginner DSLRs have some explanation of camera shooting modes and other features built in so that you can learn as you explore the menus and modes.
  • Manual controls: You’ll probably start out using your DSLR like a point-and-shoot in fully automatic mode, but the camera should have manual controls so you can step up to using them as you improve your skills.
  • Smartphone connectivity: You should be able to connect your camera and your smartphone so you can transfer images off the camera and share them with friends online quickly.
  • Long battery life: Most beginner-level DSLRs don’t have the best battery life, so you’ll end up having to carry an extra battery or two. We favored cameras that can last longer than 1,000 shots between charges.
  • Portable: If a camera is too large or too heavy, you won’t be inclined to take it with you. We looked to keep the camera size smaller than 5 inches wide and the weight to about a pound.

How we tested

For our latest update, I compared the Nikon D3500 directly against the Canon Rebel SL3, our two top contenders from our current research combined with past hands-on testing. I also compared images and video from our previous upgrade pick, Canon’s EOS T7i, with our results from this round of testing.

I did a lot of comparison shooting with each camera in everyday situations in Seattle and while visiting Sun Valley, Idaho, focusing mostly on our two puppies thanks to social-distancing measures. I observed each camera’s user interface, autofocus, special features, overall handling, menu layouts, and battery life. I connected each camera to my smartphone to see how quickly you could start to share images.

Our pick: Nikon D3500

Photo: Rozette Rago

Our pick

Nikon D3500

This lightweight, easy-to-use camera offers both great image quality and battery life.

If you’re ready to advance your camera skills and purchase your first DSLR camera, the Nikon D3500 is the best option for a beginner. Its best-in-class 24-megapixel sensor can capture sharp images with high dynamic range, meaning both bright and dark areas will show details, and it excels in low-light situations. It’s particularly easy to use, has a Guide Mode to help you learn, plus manual controls that you can grow into, and connects to your smartphone through Bluetooth. Small and light enough to carry all day, it also has a battery that can last through long shoots.

The Nikon D3500 comes with a Guide Mode that explains how certain settings work and when to use them. Photo: Rozette Rago

The Guide Mode cleverly coaches beginners to choose their shooting situation while offering instructions about how the camera will perform in each scenario. The easy operation mode offers simple explanations for when to use settings such as Night Portrait and Moving Subjects. If you select the advanced Guide Mode operation, you’ll have more control in a setting like Soften background, which prompts you to select your f-stop in aperture priority mode. As your photography skills grow, you can take off these training wheels to explore full manual controls and start shooting in raw.

You can easily use Nikon’s SnapBridge app to connect the camera to your phone and harness the camera’s Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) connectivity to continuously keep the images you shoot downloading to your phone, as long as they are smaller than full-resolution raw files. Once this option was set up, images seamlessly downloaded to my iPhone each time I turned on the camera. You can also use the app to control the camera remotely. Most other cameras will let you control the camera wirelessly but don’t send all the images you shoot to your phone. Instead you have to select which images you want to transfer after they’re shot.

The D3500 has truly impressive battery life—1,550 images per charge—a whopping 350-image increase over its predecessor and a previous top pick in this category, the D3400. That should easily equate to days of shooting before the battery needs to be recharged.

The camera’s lightweight and compact size is critical for a new user who might be graduating from a pocketable smartphone to their first interchangeable-lens DSLR. If a camera feels burdensome, it’s difficult to develop the habit of always bringing it with you. Here, the D3500 shines by weighing only 615 grams with the kit lens—or about as much as your grande latte. It’s one of the lightest DSLRs you can find.

Small and lightweight, the Nikon D3500 can be easily slipped into a bag or worn around your neck all day. Photo: Rozette Rago

The D3500 comes with Nikon’s collapsible AF-P 18–55mm Nikkor lens, which helps keep the camera’s size down when not in use. It uses a stepping motor to achieve speedy, ultraquiet focusing—something particularly useful in video mode. The D3500 can smoothly shoot full HD video at 1080/60p, and a half press of the shutter button while filming helps to keep your subject in focus.The kit lens is basically the same as you’ll get with any DSLR of this level, but when it comes to continuous focusing during video capture, Canon’s Dual-Pixel AF doesn’t require a half button press to maintain focus.

The Nikon D3500 accurately captures highlights and shadows, and a shallow depth of field even with the kit lens. Photo: Erin Lodi

The Nikon D3500 offers a Sports mode that makes it easy to freeze motion, like a dog shaking off after a swim. Photo: Erin Lodi

Weighing about as much as your large latte, the Nikon D3500 is convenient to bring along so you’re always ready to take a quick picture at brunch or anywhere else. Photo: Erin Lodi

The Nikon D3500 accurately captures highlights and shadows, and a shallow depth of field even with the kit lens. Photo: Erin Lodi

The D3500 boasts a burst rate of 5 frames per second, which should be sufficient for most basic fast-action photography and is as fast as you can expect from any camera in this category.

The D3500 offers an 11-point autofocus system, which should do a slightly better job at keeping your subjects in focus when shooting through the viewfinder than the Canon Rebel SL3’s 9-point system. In our hands-on testing we did not observe any noticeable difference.

Flaws but not dealbreakers

We couldn’t stop trying to tap the D3500’s fixed LCD screen. Most of the competition has either slightly higher-resolution LCDs (1,044,000 dots to the 921,000 on the D3400), hinged screens, or touchscreens (or some combination of the above). For the price and image quality, we still settled on the D3500 as our top choice, but if you’ll mostly be shooting video or in live-view mode, or if retraining your brain not to tap a glowing digital screen feels insurmountable, you might want to take a look at the Canon SL3.

While the D3500 can capture high-quality 1080/60p video, this camera is not designed with the videographer in mind. Although the non-rotating, non-touchscreen display is likely the greater hindrance to filming, the D3500 also neglects a microphone jack.

The Nikon D3500 is paired with a collapsible 18–55mm f/3.5-5.6 VR lens, which allows for keeping the camera compact when not in use but also requires you to push a button on the lens to rotate the lens before using it. A helpful on-screen prompt will remind you of this each time you turn on the camera if the lens isn’t already extended. (You can opt to leave the lens extended, but then you also lose that bit of compactness.) This is a bit annoying but also a habit you’d likely form quickly and is easily remedied by upgrading to better lenses in the future, which is, after all, the point of a camera with interchangeable lenses. We offer a beginner’s guide to “The First Nikon Lenses You Should Buy”.

If you do start to experiment with new lenses on the Nikon D3500, beware: This camera offers no automatic sensor cleaning. This common mechanism can help remove dust that makes its way to the sensor when switching lenses, which will display as dark spots on your image. Owners of the D3500 will need to be ultracautious about when and how they swap lenses to avoid any sensor dust.

Upgrade pick: Canon Rebel SL3

Photo: Rozette Rago

Upgrade pick

If you’re more interested in video than stills, or if you prefer a rotating touchscreen—which can be especially useful when shooting video and when focusing on fast-moving children and pets—the Canon Rebel SL3 is a better, though slightly more expensive, option.

Though the SL3 only offers a 9-point autofocus system when shooting with the viewfinder, in Live View you can select from 3,975 focus points on its very responsive touchscreen. Live View also uses Canon’s Dual Pixel autofocus technology to keep moving subjects in focus when shooting stills or video: just tap to select your subject and the camera keeps focus locked as the subject moves, or even as you move the camera. The fully rotating touchscreen makes shooting from any angle easy—including selfies or videos starring you—and the SL3 can shoot up to 4K video while our main pick tops out at 1080/60p video.

The very responsive, fully rotating touchscreen on the Canon Rebel SL3 makes shooting video, or quick-moving subjects, easier. Video: Rozette Rago

Connectivity is simple via Canon’s Camera Connect app, which offers step-by-step instructions. It took only a few seconds to start downloading images to my iPhone, even raw files. You can also shoot remotely using the app. Unlike our main pick, you can’t have the camera send all of your images to your phone as they’re captured.

When shooting in Live View, the Canon Rebel SL3 can lock focus and keep tracking as the subject moves or even as you move the camera. Photo: Rozette Rago

The Canon Rebel SL3 menus offer plenty of explanations and definitions aimed at new shooters. Photo: Rozette Rago

When shooting in Live View, the Canon Rebel SL3 can lock focus and keep tracking as the subject moves or even as you move the camera. Photo: Rozette Rago

The standard kit lens paired with the SL3 is the EF-S 18–55mm f/4–5.6 IS STM, a typical inexpensive zoom lens for everyday shooting. This lens should serve you well for shooting in bright conditions and is so quiet that it won’t interfere with sound when you’re shooting video, but as you grow in your photography knowledge and interest, you’ll likely want to invest in a better lens. (See our guide to “The First Canon Lenses You Should Buy.”) Though EF-S lenses aren’t as capable as their counterparts designed for full-frame DSLRs, they are considerably less expensive and lighter. Together, the SL3 and its kit lens weigh just slightly more than the Nikon D3500, but the combo is portable enough that you can easily wear it on your body all day, or stuff it into a purse or backpack easily.

Even the kit lens with the Canon Rebel SL3 can create beautiful-looking out-of-focus backgrounds. Photo: Erin Lodi

The Nikon D3500 offers a Sports mode that makes it easy to freeze motion, like a dog shaking off after a swim. Photo: Erin Lodi

Though slightly heavier than our top pick, the Canon Rebel SL3 is still small and portable enough to take along to brunch. Photo: Erin Lodi

Even the kit lens with the Canon Rebel SL3 can create beautiful-looking out-of-focus backgrounds. Photo: Erin Lodi

Though the SL3’s battery life of 1,070 shots per charge (about 500 less than the D3500) should carry you through days of shooting stills through the viewfinder, shooting video and in Live View will quickly deplete your battery. We always recommend carrying a spare battery in your camera bag.

The competition

Our previous upgrade pick, Canon’s EOS Rebel T7i, hasn’t dropped much in price, and though it offers a more effective Dual Pixel autofocus system, we think the SL3 offers a better value in this category. The Canon Rebel SL3 also has significantly better battery life at 1,070 images per charge versus 600 from the T7i, and it’s smaller and lighter, making it all the more portable.

Canon’s Rebel SL2 is the Nikon D3500 camera’s closest competitor in scale, but it still outweighs our pick when paired with a comparable kit lens. Its Feature Assistant suggestions can’t compete with the dedicated Guide Mode instructions the D3500 provides, giving our top pick an advantage in both portability and accessibility. The Canon’s outdated nine-point autofocusing system may also hinder your ability to find focus quickly when shooting through the viewfinder. For a better beginner experience (at a better price), the Nikon D3500 beats out the SL2.

We also considered older Canon models, such as the EOS Rebel T6i and T5i, as well as the SL2, but the newer features and handling of the SL3 pushed it to the top of our list.

Nikon’s D5600 offers a few more features than our top pick, like a fully rotating, higher-resolution LCD screen and a much better 39-point autofocus system, but it can’t compare with the value of the D3500 or the 4K video capabilities of the lower cost Canon Rebel SL3.

We considered but did not test Pentax’s K-70. Its control system is geared toward more-advanced shooters, and in DPReview’s test of the camera Samuel Spencer notes that the AF system—especially during continuous AF and tracking AF—is disappointing. Also, at 1½ pound, it’s on the heavy side, and its battery life of 410 shots per charge is lackluster.

Meet your guide

Erin Roberts

Erin Roberts is a freelance writer reporting on cameras and camera accessories at Wirecutter. She started her career as a photojournalist working in newspapers—shooting film—and was the mobile-imaging editor at DPReview. She is also a professional photographer who has made her living photographing everything from rock stars to humpback whales.

Further reading

  • Tools for Improving Your Vacation Photos

    by Signe Brewster

    Our photo and travel teams have spent thousands of hours testing the must-haves and the nice-but-not-necessities for documenting your next adventure.

  • What Camera Should I Buy?

    by Amadou Diallo

    Need a camera, but not sure which one will best suit your needs? Our retooled What Camera Should I Buy guide will help answer your specific questions.

  • The First Canon Lenses You Should Buy

    by Erin Roberts

    If you want to shoot in lower light, with a wider viewpoint, or closer, you’ll need to invest in new lenses. These are our recommendations.

Wirecutter is the product recommendation service from The New York Times. Our journalists combine independent research with (occasionally) over-the-top testing so you can make quick and confident buying decisions. Whether it’s finding great products or discovering helpful advice, we’ll help you get it right (the first time).

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The best cameras for beginners in 2023

Want to find one of the best cameras for beginners? Whether you’re shopping for yourself or someone else, you’re in luck – we’ve done the hard part for you, and picked out the absolute best cameras for beginners on the market right now, based on our extensive experience testing and reviewing them. For learning the principles of image-making and growing into a confident photographer or videographer, these are the cameras to choose from.

That’s an important aspect of a beginner’s camera that often gets forgotten – there’s no sense spending money on a camera you’re going to have outgrown within months, however cheap it may be. A good beginner’s camera should be easy to get to grips with, yes, but it should also offer depth of control – not to mention image quality – to the point where you’d be happy using your beginner’s camera for a good few years. And when it does come time to move on, the ideal beginner’s camera should have a solid upgrade path, allowing you to keep using any lenses you’ve picked up along with it.

As such, we’re focusing on interchangeable-lens cameras for this guide, as we feel they offer the best experience for those who are committed to improving and developing their image-making. If you feel a compact camera (i.e. one with a fixed lens) might be more your speed, then check out our guide to the best compact cameras.

So other than a good selection of lenses, what else does a good beginner’s camera need? Here’s a quick rundown before we get into it.

How to choose the best camera for beginners

A good beginner’s camera should offer a degree of manual control, so that you can understand how the different settings affect the final image. It’s important to think about sensor size as well; in this guide, we’re dealing with APS-C and Micro Four Thirds as these are generally the options beginners will go for. APS-C sensors are larger, which improves image quality, but they also require larger, pricier bodies to house.

There’s also the type of camera to think about – DSLR or mirrorless? DSLRs are generally hardier, have better battery life, and can field an optical viewfinder; however, mirrorless cameras are more portable, and tend to have more sophisticated autofocus and video options. See our guide to DSLRs vs mirrorless for a complete run-down of the differences.

Video features are also something you may want to look at. Do you want the option to shoot 4K video? Then there’s also the autofocus system the camera uses, as well as its maximum burst speed (measured in frames per second). Both of these are important if you want to shoot fast action or wildlife. If, however, you prefer to shoot landscapes or portraits, you may want to prioritise sensor resolution, measured in megapixels.

It’s a lot to take in, but don’t worry. Drawing on the expertise of our review team, we’ve clearly explained the strengths and weaknesses of every camera on our list. So, no matter what kind of subjects you want to capture, there should be the right beginner’s camera here for you.

If you’re buying for a younger person, or child, have a look at our guide to the best cameras for kids and teenagers. We also have guides to the best DSLRs and the best mirrorless cameras if you already know which type you want. 


Canon EOS R10

At a glance:

  • Mirrorless camera
  • 24.2MP APS-C sensor
  • Canon RF/RF-S lenses
  • 4K video
  • £999/$1099 with 18-45mm lens

To help people jump into its fast-growing EOS R line of mirrorless cameras, Canon introduced a couple of smaller, more affordable models into the line in 2022. While the EOS R10 is on the expensive side for a beginner’s camera (and you’ll find plenty of more affordable options further down this list), it’s an excellent investment for anyone who wants to dive seriously into image-making.

It has an APS-C sensor, which is smaller than the full-frame sensor of the bigger EOS R cameras, but it uses the same lens mount. This means you can take advantage of all the excellent Canon RF lenses that it is currently pouring its R&D budget into – the range is small right now, but we can only expect it to grow as time goes on (which is not something we can say for the DSLR EF lenses, or for the poor, sad EF-M mirrorless range).

In our review, we praised the EOS R10 for its satisfying handling and reliably excellent image quality. We just have to hope that Canon has learned its lesson from the ill-fated EOS M series, and keeps introducing native RF-S lenses to suit this camera’s smaller sensor.

Pros:

  • Lightweight, with great controls
  • Fantastic upgrade path
  • Can take EF/EF-S lenses with mount adapter

Cons:

  • Limited native RF-S lens range
  • Viewfinder a little small

Read our Canon EOS R10 review.


Canon EOS 250D / Rebel SL3

Canon EOS 250D DSLR with 18-55mm lens

At a glance:

  • DSLR
  • 24.2MP APS-C sensor
  • Canon EF/EF-S lenses
  • 4K video
  • £639 / $749 with 18-55mm IS lens

If you prefer the good-old clunking shutter of a DSLR, then the Canon EOS 250D is one of the best entry points. Positioned between the entry-level EOS 2000D and mid-range EOS 850D models, the 24.2MP EOS 250D is Canon’s smallest DSLR and comes with some key features not found on the EOS 2000D.

These include Canon’s Dual Pixel AF technology that speeds up focus performance when the camera is in live view, 4K video recording, plus a vari-angle touchscreen LCD display. The intuitive control layout makes it easy to use, while Canon’s guided user interface helps beginners learn the main settings. If you’re considering the 1300D/2000D but have a little more to spend, the 250D is well worth a look.

Pros:

  • Dependably excellent image quality
  • Very lightweight
  • Loads of lenses to choose from

Cons:

  • No weatherproofing
  • 9-point AF system has aged

Read our Canon EOS 250D / Rebel SL3 review.


If you’re new to photography, check out our Improve Your Photography series, which is designed to guide you from the very basics of photography, as well as improve your photography, with guides on:

  • Different camera types
  • Different lens choices
  • Learn about exposure: shutter, aperture and ISO speed
  • The art of photography and composition

You’ll also find guides to portrait, macro, street, landscape photography and more, so once you’ve had a look at what cameras are best for beginners, make sure you bookmark our Improve Your Photography series.


Fujifilm X-T30 II

Fujifilm X-T30 Mark II in hand, body only

Fujifilm X-T30 II at a glance:

  • Mirrorless camera
  • 26MP APS-C X-Trans CMOS sensor
  • Fujifilm X lenses
  • 4K video
  • £769 / $899 body only

Fujifilm’s X-T30 II updates the popular X-T30, and what’s impressive about the Fujifilm X-T30 II is that it features the same impressive 26MP APS-C X-Trans CMOS sensor as Fujifilm’s flagship cameras. This means you get excellent image quality, great noise performance, and for those that like manual controls, the camera gives direct access to camera settings. There’s also 4K video recording, and a range of Fujifilm X-Mount lenses available. You also get a metal camera body, and high-speed shooting, so that you’re not likely to be limited by this camera in any way.

Pros:

  • Gorgeous JPEGs straight from camera
  • Satisfying manual controls
  • Stylish, high-quality construction

Cons:

  • On the pricier end for entry-level
  • Annoying Q button placement

Read our Fujifilm X-T30 II review.


Nikon D3500

Nikon D3500 DSLR

At a glance:

  • DSLR
  • 24MP APS-C CMOS sensor
  • Nikon F lenses
  • Full HD video recording
  • £449 / $649 with 18-55mm VR lens

Nikon’s entry-level DSLR is a solid performer, providing excellent image quality from the 24MP DX-format sensor, aided by a proven 11-point autofocus system. There’s an easy-to-use Guide Mode for beginners, along with full manual control for more-advanced users. Bluetooth connectivity allows images to be transferred to a smartphone for sharing on social media. The Nikon D3500 provides a redesigned body compared to the D3400, with a deeper, more comfortable handgrip and improved battery life rating for only a little more money.

Pros:

  • Useful guide modes for beginners
  • Excellent battery life
  • Generous 24MP resolution

Cons:

  • Not weather-sealed
  • Basic 11-point AF system

Read our Nikon D3500 review.


Nikon D5600

The Nikon D5600 offers easy transfer of images via Nikon’s SnapBridge technology

At a glance:

  • DSLR
  • 24MP APS-C CMOS sensor
  • Nikon F lenses
  • Full HD video recording
  • £649 / $799 with 18-55mm VR lens

Positioned above the D3500 but below the D7500, the 24. 2MP Nikon D5600 is an upper-entry-level DSLR. As such, it comes with some additional and enhanced features over the D3500, including a larger and sharper 3.2in, 1.04-million-dot vari-angle LCD display (compared with the D3500’s fixed display) that also provides touchscreen control. In addition, the D5600 gets 39 AF points compared to the D3500’s 11 AF points. The D5600 also features Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity along with a time-lapse movie mode.

Pros:

  • Articulated touchscreen LCD
  • Has mic input for video
  • Can shoot time-lapse in-camera

Cons:

  • AF can struggle with moving subjects
  • No 4K

Read our Nikon D5600 review.


Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV

Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV

At a glance:

  • Mirrorless camera
  • 20MP Four Thirds sensor
  • Micro Four Thirds lenses
  • 4K video recording
  • £699 / $799 with 14-42mm lens

Based around a 20MP sensor, the Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV mirrorless camera offers excellent JPEG image quality with extremely attractive colours. The design is stylish and the ergonomics are well laid-out, while extremely effective in-body stabilisation keeps pictures sharp. You also get a good set of useful advanced features and the camera is supported by a fine set of small, affordable Micro Four Thirds lenses. You’ll also find the camera offers Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, as well as 4K video recording. With In-Body Image Stabilisation, it offers great value for money.

Pros:

  • Bright, punchy images full of character
  • Small and enjoyable to use
  • Has advanced features to dig into

Cons:

  • No mic socket for video
  • Smaller sensor impacts raw image quality

Read our Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV review.


Panasonic Lumix GX880

At a glance:

  • Mirrorless camera
  • 16MP Four Thirds sensor
  • Micro Four Thirds lenses
  • 4K video recording
  • £349 with 12-32mm lens

The GX880 is an entry-level mirrorless camera built around a 16MP Micro Four Thirds sensor. Designed to be easy to use, the GX880 is nonetheless equipped with a good range of features, including 4K video capture and Panasonic’s 4K Photo mode. While it lacks an electronic viewfinder, the tiltable 3in, 1.04-million-dot rear LCD display provides touchscreen control, and can be flipped upwards by 180° for easy selfies. The tiny 12-32mm kit zoom is a perfect match for the small body.

Pros:

  • Super-tiny and pocketable
  • Useful 4K Photo modes
  • Touchscreen makes for intuitive operation

Cons:

  • No viewfinder
  • Some may find it too small

Panasonic Lumix GX80/GX85

At a glance:

  • Mirrorless camera
  • 16MP Four Thirds sensor
  • Micro Four Thirds lenses
  • 4K video recording
  • £399 with 12-32mm lens; $597 with 12-32mm and 45-150mm lenses

This small but well-featured mirrorless camera is built around a 16MP Micro Four Thirds sensor. It has built-in 5-axis image stabilisation, 4K video capture, a 2.76-million-dot electronic viewfinder, a 1.04-million-dot tilting touchscreen and 4K Photo mode that facilitates the extraction of 8MP still images from 4K movie footage. Small and portable, and usually bundled with a tiny retractable zoom lens, the GX80 is a well-rounded camera that’s attractively priced.

Pros:

  • Very effective stabilisation
  • Shoots quietly (great for street/wildlife)
  • Stylish rangefinder-esque design

Cons:

  • Viewfinder sometimes exhibits ‘rainbow’ effects
  • Aging autofocus system

Read our Panasonic Lumix GX80 review.


Pentax K-70

Pentax K-70 in hand, as used by Jessica Miller, photo: Joshua Waller

At a glance:

  • DSLR
  • 24MP APS-C CMOS sensor
  • Pentax K-mount lenses
  • Full HD video
  • £699 / $578 body only

Pentax has gained a deserved reputation for producing cameras that provide great value for money, and the entry-level K-70 DSLR is no exception. Built around a 24.2MP APS-C CMOS sensor, notable highlights are a large, bright pentaprism viewfinder with 100% coverage, full weather sealing and an in-body image-stabilisation system – none of which you’ll find on the K-70’s direct rivals from Nikon and Canon. Other features include ISO sensitivity of ISO 100-102,400 and 6fps continuous shooting. For the price, it’s easy to recommend.

Pros:

  • Gorgeously bright viewfinder
  • Effective stabilisation
  • Tactile handling experience

Cons:

  • LCD screen not touch-sensitive
  • Autofocus struggles with moving subjects

Read our Pentax K-70 review.


Sony Alpha 6000

Sony A600 with a Sigma 18-50mm lens.

At a glance:

  • Mirrorless camera
  • 24MP APS-C sensor
  • Sony E lenses
  • Full HD video
  • £499 / $648 with 16-50mm PZ lens

Released in 2014, the 24.3MP Sony Alpha 6000 is best thought of as a slightly less advanced, yet significantly cheaper, alternative to the more recent Alpha 6300 and Alpha 6500 models. While it lacks 4K video, the Alpha 6000 still has some solid features, such as its hybrid autofocus system that combines 179 phase- detection AF points and 25 contrast-detect ones for almost instant focus lock, plus ISO sensitivity of ISO 100-25,600, up to 11fps continuous shooting and Wi-Fi/NFC functionality. There’s also a built-in electronic viewfinder and tilting rear screen.

Pros:

  • Impressive autofocus and burst mode
  • Solid viewfinder
  • Loads of excellent E-mount lenses

Cons:

  • No 4K
  • Feels unbalanced with big lenses

Once you’ve chosen your camera from these options, you may want to look at some of the accessories that can help you get the most out of your kit, so make sure you have a look at the Top 10 Essential Camera Accessories for beginners.


Have a look at more buying guides here!


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50 Tips for Beginning Photographers. Photographer in Moscow Sergey Churnosov

  1. Start shooting as soon as you have a camera in your hands, don’t wait for the right moment. An iPhone with a camera or professional equipment doesn’t matter. Take your first shots close to home, capture nature, sweep beautiful places. If talent and desire are discovered, offer services to friends (for now, for a gift, the time will come for commercial orders).
    I started with this 10 years ago, armed with a camera on my iPhone, and today I have become a professional photographer. Take advice and just go for it! And 49 more recommendations from me to the treasury of a novice photographer:
  2. In the field of photography, it is now becoming more and more coherent and more difficult to earn money, so do not expect in six months or even a year to earn so much from photography that this is enough for existence. Charge yourself for a long time shooting primarily for your own pleasure.
  3. You don’t have to go straight to photography school, start by watching tutorial videos on the basics of photography on YouTube. Watch videos in accelerated mode.
  4. Most likely, you will come to photograph people, not landscapes. Therefore, immediately study portrait photography.
  5. A photograph is an image created by light, so to create a cool shot, look for an interesting light space or create interesting light yourself.
  6. Do not be “nerds”, people will reach out to you and turn to you again and again, not because you sullenly create masterpieces in a torn and smelly T-shirt, but because you are a pleasant person with whom you can have interesting and fun time on set. Show a sense of taste in your appearance.
  7. Love yourself and those around you. A professional interacts with people at every photo session. To make cooperation pleasant, treat models with warmth and love.
  8. Relationship to the camera. Make the device a “stranger’s” child. Aspiring photographers in Moscow worry about every little thing with equipment, and it’s tougher than you think. Withstands hard impacts, heat, cold. My advice: Treat the camera with moderate trepidation.
  9. The lens hood is not needed on an ongoing basis, but in some cases. For example, to enhance the contrast of colors on a sunny day or to cover the lens during rainfall.
  10. Take only necessary equipment to the shoot. Under the weight of a photo of a backpack or bag, get a back injury for a short time, stay healthy for the sake of getting an excellent result.
  11. Use the zoom lens when you really need it. If you want to shoot a wedding or other event so as not to miss a single moment, zoom is indispensable.
  12. Shoot more often with prime lenses. You will learn to think in focus.
  13. A lens for all occasions with a focal length of 35mm at f/1.4. Shooting in low light, shooting outdoors or filming video – this lens comes to the rescue everywhere.
  14. Focal 50 mm is better than 35 mm in situations where you want a slightly smaller angle so that unnecessary objects do not get into the frame.
  15. Don’t try to collect a fleet of optics, find two favorite focal lengths and work with a bunch of 2-3 lenses that will allow you to cover 99% of all photo tasks.
  16. Get rid of equipment that sits idle on the shelf. Photo equipment is easily sold on the secondary market with minimal financial losses.
  17. The lens makes the picture, not the camera itself. Often, budget photo equipment allows you to take pictures in a quality comparable to the capabilities of expensive devices. So focus on choosing a lens.
  18. Understand the operation of the camera and the purpose of all control buttons before shooting. Real situation: you want to urgently take a picture of a beautiful place or person, and the equipment is brand new. A beautiful frame may disappear while you are looking for the right button.
  19. Get ready for quick shots. If the equipment is with you on a walk, keep it turned on. We saw a panorama or an interesting moment, took out the camera and captured a great shot!
  20. Use aperture-priority “A” more often, with minimum shutter speed and maximum ISO limits. It’s nice to show off the ability to shoot in manual “M” mode, but the main goal is still pictures. The easier it is for you to photograph, the better the result.
  21. Make friends with Auto ISO, the camera’s sensitivity to light in situations where the intensity of the light changes frequently at the shooting location.
  22. If you’re wondering why your shots aren’t sharp at high magnification, the camera probably didn’t have enough light. First, think about how to increase the amount of light hitting the subject, and therefore turn the camera settings.
  23. Use the “rule of thirds” for dynamic photos. I apply the method in some cases. I recommend this rule when you or clients need “live” visual shots.
  24. Shoot, shoot, shoot. 90% of the received frames will be unusable. The more material you have, the higher the chances of finding that very masterpiece.
  25. Consider the need for UV filters. Sometimes their only useful property is the protection of the glass of an object from mechanical influences. Better use a PL polarizing filter, it will make the picture clearer and more contrast.
  26. Frame photos and videos without overexposure. The sky and clouds are often overexposed in the frame. Therefore, try to take shots without capturing the sky, unless the plot requires it.
  27. Sort out obvious defects on the way home by rating the camera itself with stars, but don’t delete those shots. This way you save time at the second stage of selecting pictures of the entire series.
  28. Never format a memory card until you have 2 copies of pictures. One copy on the computer and the other in the cloud storage.
  29. Get as close to your subject as possible. When shooting a portrait, move closer, you will most likely get a sharper and clearer image.
  30. Determine a favorable shooting angle. This skill is more important than having a cool camera that won’t save a bad photographer. The ability to find the best angle comes with experience, so shoot as often as possible.
  1. Remember the importance of sharp images. It becomes a determining factor only when processing materials for advertising billboards. Take sharpness easier when taking photos for fun or taking friendly photos.
  2. Alcohol is incompatible with filming, and you can get inspiration while sober.
  3. Have a photo session when you are full of energy and desire to create. Otherwise, get on with other things.
  4. Make it a rule to shoot only at sunset. Noon or night, a beginner is definitely not helpful.
  5. Adopt the ideas of famous photographers, but do not copy. Implement the idea your way. A borrowed technique can work several times, and constant use is harmful. You can turn into a “fake tasteless imitator”.
  6. Remember the reflection of two people. The photo session conveys the natural state of the model, and I will also tell you a secret: a piece of the photographer himself remains on each frame. Stay in a great mood to convey positive energy to your subject.
  7. Take pictures only for your own enjoyment. Minimal personal interest and involvement lead to … what result? Minimum. Take each shot with desire, the desire to get the maximum, to experience the real thrill of filming!
  8. Shoot from the front as well as from the back. Sneaky photos can be better than direct shots.
  9. Choose a theme for your photos to focus on one aspect of your shoot.
  10. Update your personal space and constantly evolve, this will bring fresh ideas for photography.
  11. Treat creative block as an experience and just keep going.
  12. Be moderately critical of yourself. Honest identification of your weaknesses helps to develop.
  13. Seize the moment. Good shots can be the result of luck. Always keep the camera on, any second can be decisive!
  14. Mercilessly delete the worst shots, proudly keep the best shots. Set aside doubtful material for reassessment on another day.
  15. Post only selected portfolio photos and sometimes photos of yourself in good quality on your social networks.
  16. Color correction and filtering will not save “dead” photos. Try to get a correctly exposed frame in the source.
  17. Shooting in JPEG can greatly simplify the process, especially at the beginning of the photographer’s journey. Sometimes a correct JPEG file is difficult to distinguish from a RAW file even after processing.
  18. Subscribe on Instagram for photographers who inspire you. Analyze their work for the light.
  19. Publish your materials on the Internet, do not shoot “on the table”. Let other people evaluate the shots from the side. Among the comments there will be sound criticism that will help you become better.
  20. Be patient in trying to start making money. Satisfied with the photos, friends will launch a word of mouth about your work, and then you can make the first price list.

Creative success to you!

Beginner photographers in Turinsk

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Ilya Richter

Services: photographer

Ilya Richter offers you photo services. If you are planning a memorable event, Ilya will be happy to help you with professional photography. Beautiful photos of you and your friends, individual photo shoots, Love Story shooting and much more.

Additional information : wedding photographer, private event photographer, anniversary photographer

photographer 15 000 — 25 000 ₽/day

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Yana Yolshina

Services: photographer, outdoor photo shoot, corporate photography

Experience :

• Photographer — 8 years.

15% discount

Sign up for a summer photo shoot until the end of July and get a discount. Registration is by prepayment.

photographer 4,000 — 20,000 ₽/h

photo editing 500 ₽

outdoor photo session 7,000 ₽/60 min.

photo session in the studio 7 000 ₽/h

11 more services

Thank you very much for the fast and high-quality work! All wishes were taken into account and the result is very pleased! Tatiana.

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Anton Vladimirovich Basanaev

Services: photographer, videographers, outdoor photo session

Vocational education : Seminars and workshops by leading photographers since 2009.

Work experience as a freelance photographer, photojournalist, videographer in the company – since 2009.

50% discount

Photo session of pregnant women is possible on TFP terms

photographer 1 500 ₽/h

outdoor photo session 1 500 ₽/h

photo session in nature 1 500 ₽/h

photo session in the office 2 500 ₽/h

11 more services

Excellent professional photography, creative approach. Responsible attitude to work. Providing photos for the next day.

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Konstantin Sergeevich Bylenkov

Services: photographer, children’s photography, wedding photographer

Experience :

• Photographer — 12 years.

photographer 10 000 ₽/day

family photographer negotiable

reportage shooting by agreement

children’s photography by agreement

1 more service

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Kira Maratovna Timerkhanova

Services: photographer 900 05

Education, courses:

• Tyumen State University, Faculty of Philology, Department of Journalism, journalist television, 2001–2007

negotiable photographer

It was very pleasant to work with Kira, the photos turned out very bright, beautiful, despite the fact that we were with a small child, Kira was able to make very beautiful …

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Alexander Nikolaevich Bazhenov

Services: photographer, videographers, outdoor photo session

Education : Magnet School of Photography, photographer (2011).

Master classes of the Federation of Ural Photographers (since 2011).

Private activity experience – since 2011.

photographer 1,000 — 5,000 ₽/h

photo session in a studio 1,000 — 3,000 ₽/h

birthday photographers 1,000 — 3,000 ₽/h

children’s photography 1,000 — 3,000 ₽/h

11 more services

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Alexander Potapkin

Services: photographer, baby photography, portrait photography

Additional information : children’s party photographer, New Year’s photographer, event photographer, wedding photographer, offsite registration photographer

photographer 8 000 ₽/day

portrait photography by agreement

business portrait negotiable

family photographer negotiable

6 more services

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Evgenia Vokhmyakova

Services: photographer, family photographer

Vokhmyakova Evgenia loves to take pictures and tries to fill every picture with this love. The main thing for a photographer considers the ability to catch the best moments and capture them in photographs.

Additional information : outdoor registration photographer, children’s party photographer, wedding photographer, private event photographer

photographer 1 700 ₽/h

family photographer negotiable

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Darya Valerievna

Services: photographer

Additional information : concert photographer, New Year photographer, anniversary photographer

photographer 5 000 ₽/day

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Evgeny Mikhailovich Dementiev

Services: photographer, videographers, videography of weddings

Education :

• Tomsk State University of Control Systems and Radioelectronics, Faculty of Economics, specialty – Informatics and Computer Engineering, bachelor, 2008–2012.

photographer 1 500 — 2 500 ₽/h

photo session in the studio 1 500 — 2 000 ₽/h

portrait photography 1,500 — 2,500 ₽/h

business portrait 6,000 — 8,000 ₽/h

11 more services

Evgeny arrived on time, he had a lot of equipment and accessories with him, he even had a big microphone for the interview like in the news. I removed everything carefully, in…

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Vera Evgenievna Bolotova

Services: photographer, children’s photography, wedding photographer

Experience :

9000 2 • Photographer – 7 years.

photographer 2 500 — 3 500 ₽/h

photo session in the studio 2 500 — 3 500 ₽/h

photo session love story 2 500 — 3 500 ₽/h

reportage shooting 2 500 — 3 500 ₽/h

3 more services

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Vyacheslav Sergeevich Gali shev

Services: photographer

photographer negotiable

photo, video, audio negotiable

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Krasikova Katerina

Services: photographer

wedding

photographer 8 000 ₽/day

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Anastasia Kosareva

Services: photographer

Every second of a happy moment is priceless, and every new day is a chance to make your life brighter. We will help you preserve the brightest and most joyful events of your life by turning to beauty and imagination. Look at your present through our eyes and you will see that it is wonderful.

Additional information : birthday photographer, holiday photographer, wedding photographer, anniversary photographer

photographer 5 000 — 15 000 ₽/day

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Denis DV▼RCHFOTO

Services: photographer

Denis DV?RCHFOTO is open for implementation your thoughts and ideas, using a professional camera, your creativity and energy .

Additional information : field registration photographer, prom photographer, city day photographer, birthday photographer, holiday photographer, presentation photographer, wedding photographer

photographer 5 000 — 10 000 ₽/day

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Denis Alexandrovich Poluektov

Services: photographer, outdoor photo session, corporate photography

Education, courses:

• USU, faculty of journalism, journalist, 2009– 2014

Experience :

• Work experience — 12 years.

photographer 5 000 ₽/h 911 services0005

I liked working with Denis! A professional in his field. Probably one of the few who fully read the TOR and understood what I want from the photo shoot. Helped …

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Lyubov Stanislavovna Erlikh

Services: photographer

Experience :

• Taking photos shooting – 8 years.

photographer 1 000 ₽/h

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Liza Pestrikova

Services: photographer

Photography with soul! Elusive moments and sincere emotions from professional photographer Elizaveta Pestrikova.

Additional information : wedding photographer, banquet photographer, event photographer

photographer 5 000 ₽/day

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Evgeny Vladimirovich Knyazev

Services: photographer, corporate photography, product photography

Education, courses:

Experience :

• Experience – 20 years.

Achievements, awards:

• 1st place in the Best Wedding Album nomination at the Eurasian Wedding Competition, 2008

• 1st place in the photography competition, 2009

• Speaker of the international online conference “Look through the lens 2.0”, 2016

10% discount

For large orders.

photographer 3 500 — 4 500 ₽/h

photo session in the studio 3 500 ₽/h

subject photography 3 500 ₽/h

wedding photographer 2 500 ₽/h

11 more services

Just the perfect photo shoot in my opinion! everyone told me how to stand up, how to sit down, very good contact with children! and most importantly a huge number of photos…

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Shevtsova Anastasia

Services: photographer

Shevtsova Anastasia will always find something unusual in an ordinary event. A professional photographer’s eye will always notice interesting details and find interesting angles for a photo shoot.