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Having a nosey at some of the cracking photos throughout the site I've realised that my poxy little point and shoot isn't really up to much so thought I might bye myself a bit of an upgrade and maybe a couple of photographic courses to learn how to use one properly. I've no idea where to start and there seems to be an awful lot of second hand stuff out there at reasonable prices. So, camera specialists, what camera and is second hand enough to do the job or should I buy new? Any other advice would be welcome.
Some of the point and shoots are amazing. A little experience and you can get some amazing shoots. No need for the big guns for most people.
If you are going for a DSLR then decide what brand you want. Nikon and Canon are the obvious choices but there are other choices. The most important tool might be a solid tripod.
Camera bodies I think are fine to buy used (at a cut rate price) but buy the absolute best new lenses you can or the very best used lenses from a high end dealer. There are people who turn over lenses pretty quickly so if you find the right dealer you might get some good lenses.
As Hama says there are some cracking point and shoot cameras out there. More than capeable of holding their own with a DSLR.
The Nikon D60 is a great beginner camera for DSLR just a pain to get AF lenses for. If you can strech to a D90 then you can take some fantastic shots and have lots of options to grow into and explore.
I have a Nikon D90 DSRL. Fantastic camera but if you want to do macro stuff you need a macro lense. I've got a few lenses for it do do different things. from 17mm to 300mm some fixed most zoom.
S/H camera you can get some cracking deals. My friend got a Nikon D80 s/h had taken less shots than his D60 that he traded in at the same time. S/h lenses are great value i have a 17-50mm F2.8 lense. Cost 280 well over 500 new. It's my current fave.
One thing about camera is that its a real Nikon/Cannon club. Once your in one the other brand does not exist
The lumix range are very good,but if you want point & shoot and manual control the canon g range of compact cameras are the best,I have the g12 & it is very easy to use from the off,and you can get very engrossed in the manual settings as you learn,its ideal if you intend to do some courses on photography due to the extensive control it offers.