I know it may seem a bit negative to appear to concentrate on what you get wrong, rather than what you get right in your photos. But this article is trying to avoid you buying a camera that doesn’t do what you want it to, produces results that are disappointing, and ultimately may (god forbid!) put you off of photography and take up World of Warcarft online instead.
There’s nothing worse than getting your new camera all unwrapped, charged up, and out you go; snap, shoot, clickety-click… and oh dear. That’s not anything like the images you see on the box or in the manual!
Now the advent of digital photography some years ago, combined with regular innovations and developments, should mean that it’s impossible to buy one that’s inferior, takes dodgy pictures, or disappoints you. Obviously you have to tailor your expectations to your budget. For less than £100 is probably not going to perform as well as one over £400, or have as many features. But there is one problem that a lot of new photographers come up against when buying their first entry-level, or upgrade camera: Light. Or lack of it. Or shades of it.
While blurring and lack of decent colour reproduction can also be a problem, light is the one that can separate the men cameras from the boys, or the 14th Level Elf Paladins with +4 Magic swords from the Halfling Apprentice Thief with a club and two and half hit points (using that World of Warcraft analogy again!).
It won’t be a problem if every shot you take is one that is superbly and uniformly lit, a well-lit beach, bright clothes, sun over your shoulder, no reflections in the sea etc etc. But when it comes to areas in the frame of the photo that have shade, dark corners, or that have areas of high brightness, a standard unit without any compensations, or that misinterprets what it sees and adjusts wrongly. I have a girlfriend from Jamaica, and it can be really tricky taking a decent picture of her against a bright backdrop, I’ve had some cameras that just boost up the exposure so that her face appears fine, but the background is a bright blurry Hiroshima sunburst, and others where they focus on the background and no features of her face can be discerned.
So the trick here is simple. But a reputable tried and tested device that has a number of automatic and manual exposures to deal with every light issue you might encounter. Reputable means a company that has built up a reputation for reliability and customer service. And one that has great cameras that perform well in low light, and in a variety of mixed light conditions.
This is my personal choice. One that won’t let you down and will last you ages and ages: The Panasonic Lumix LX5. It is very well regarded for many good reasons. It does very well in low light so you won’t miss out on good pictures when the lighting is not as good as you would like. Compact and Easy to Use, This is still one of he Most Popular Digital Cameras around. Investigate it, and I suggest you’d be buying right and not getting your photos wrong for a long time to come!