What are the parameters that change the quality of a camera?

k.udhay

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Hi. Can somebody pl. tell me the parameters / specifications of a camera that change it's quality. If I go to Nikon site, I see some differences between different variances of DSLRs. But the cost changes dramatically. So I am curious to know such parameters that make the camera a good one or a bad one. Thanks.
 

Benco

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Good or bad isn't really how it works, with DSLR cameras you get what you pay for. There's nothing wrong with the cheapest offerings from the likes of Canon and Nikon, for more money you get stronger bodies, more powerful processors, better sensors, better metering, more manual control and so on.
 

JenR

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IF you are looking at Nikon DSLRs, they are all "good" cameras. The right one for you is completely dependent on your budget and where you are on your photographic journey. How will you be using your camera? What will you be shooting? Under what conditions? What would be completely fine for some people will not do the job for others. I loved my original D50-- it was a fabulous way to start. I upgraded when I regularly bumped up against its limits for high-ISO performance and focusing.
 

iolair

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The 'Quality' of a camera means different things to different people. It depends on what you, personally, want/need from your camera.

You can take amazing photos with the entry-level D-SLR cameras with kit lenses from any of the manufacturers.
However, the top of the range cameras and lenses will allow you to create those images across a wider range of situations.

All D-SLR cameras are capable of producing horrible images if used poorly. The quality of the photographer is more important than the quality of camera. (Of course the quality of the photographer can be improved by taking advice, reading, taking LOTS of photos and examining them with a critical eye and feeding that back to future photos).

Some differences between entry-level and top-of-the-range cameras include:
- ability to produce clean images in low light
- sensor size (entry level cameras have smaller sensors than top-of-the-range, meaning lenses see a narrower/longer view but have poorer definition and scope for shallow depth of field)
- usability - it's often quicker to adjust manual settings on a top-of-the-range
- fastest shutter speed (some entry level cameras will shoot as fast as 1/2000s but upper models as fast as 1/8000s, giving you more options in very bright conditions or for freezing very quick motion)
- weatherproofness - professional cameras and lenses are better able to cope with dust or showers
- autofocus speed - professional cameras often focus quicker and more accurately on fast-moving subjects
- some camera bodies now include built-in Wi-Fi, GPS and/or control of wireless flashes, for those that value such things.
 

SCraig

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What's the difference between a Volkswagen and a Rolls-Royce? They are both cars, they will both get you where you want to go but there is a vast difference in price.
 

snowbear

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I think it comes down to features and build.
 

KenC

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more manual control

The least expensive DSLR's allow total manual control.

Whether the other differences are worth the money is an individual decision and I would say the less expensive ones are a better starting point until you know what you really need.
 
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k.udhay

k.udhay

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Thanks, iolair. I got it now!
 
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k.udhay

k.udhay

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Thank you all! :)
 

cynicaster

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more manual control

The least expensive DSLR's allow total manual control.

Whether the other differences are worth the money is an individual decision and I would say the less expensive ones are a better starting point until you know what you really need.


I absolutely agree with this

I don’t care who you are, learning from the ground up to really stretch the legs of DSLR gear takes time and lots of practice, and that learning can be done just fine with inexpensive stuff. As a beginner, by the time you actually have a clue how to proficiently and methodically leverage the added power that a mid-level camera brings, such that your results are consistently superior to what you’d get from modern entry-level bodies, the capabilities of your expensive camera will be rivaled on cameras that cost hundreds of dollars less than what you spent a few years prior. Heck, it may even be that in the specific types of photography you come to enjoy, you’ll see surprisingly little practical, real-world benefit to a $2500 body over a $600 one.

Being somebody who started entry-level and based on my experience thus far, I can say without a shadow of a doubt that the deciding factor on any upgrade I make is going to be high ISO performance. But even there, I’m not in too much of a hurry because I feel the percentage of photos I’ve taken where I’ve actually been hamstrung by that limitation has been fairly low in the grand scheme. If I had aspirations to shoot sports or ball-room events it’d be a different story, but I have no interest in that stuff.
 

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