ConnieR. wrote:I like landscape and nature photography, especially closeups of flowers. I've always wanted a DSLR, and I'm trying to save up money for one. However, for me the biggest disadvantage is the size, and having to carry around multiple lenses. I think I would prefer one of the more advanced compact digital cameras, so I can take it with me on trips when I don't want to lug around a lot of stuff, but I don't want to miss opportunities for great photos. I was considering the Nikon Coolpix P500, or maybe a Canon Powershot G9 is I can find a good used one for a reasonable price. So what are the advantages of DSLRs over other cameras that would make them indispensable? Or should I get both? I was thinking that a DSLR would be better when you can plan your sessions and get everything set up for the perfect shot, but a compact would be better for spur of the moment photography. Also, A good DSLR with a good range of lenses would probably be above my price range for several years yet. It seems that a lot of good photography is more about being in the right place at the right time, than about the equipment, but I want a good camera that can perform well when I get that place and time. Any thoughts or recommendations would be appreciated. Thank you.
Welcome to the forum, Connie!
Photography can be a very expensive hobby and can take quite a bit of time if you want to really get involved in it. I see a number of people that invest in one of the less expensive DSLR's and then never upgrade the lens or add any new ones. This defeats the advantage of owning a DSLR. The lenses are interchangeable for a reason. If you want to keep this an inexpensive hobby, a good "point and shoot" camera is the way to go. The manufacturers are constantly improving them and some of them produce some excellent images. They have a lot of limitations that some people can't accept and for those people, a DSLR is the correct choice. I can't offer any advise on which of these cameras to choose, but this site does a lot of camera reviews and lets you do comparisons between cameras to get the features that are important to you: http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/
If you decide to go for a DSLR, there are used markets that help keep the costs down a little. I have bought and sold equipment at http://www.fredmiranda.com/
and at http://photography-on-the.net/forum/
Some stores also sell used equipment - http://www.keh.com/
and some stores also sell refurbished lenses - http://www.adorama.com/
Even though I have bought a number of lenses used and I've sold most of the equipment I rarely use, I still have a big investment in photography equipment. Of course, I didn't buy everything at once though. I've been adding equipment over a number of years. I started with a mid priced camera and added quality lenses as the budget allowed. I've only recently purchased a second camera and that was after buying most of the lenses that I needed/wanted. There are always lenses that a photographer wants that are so expensive that they don't even make our wish list. Those will never fit in my budget. I just don't have the desire to invest $5000 or more on a single lens.
Hope this helps, Connie and be sure to post some pics. We all like to look at pics!