4 reasons to buy a DSLR and NOT a fixed lens camera.

As your passion for photography grows you will likely start to consider upgrading from a point and shoot or other fixed lens camera to a DSLR.

Or, if you’re just getting started, you may want to jump right in with a bigger camera.

There are certainly many pros and cons you will want to look at when making the final decision but here are 4 of my reasons why you would want to seriously consider buying a DSLR instead of a fixed lens camera.


Reason #1: Price

Most of the major camera manufacturers that produce DSLRs have at least one camera kit (camera body and one or more lenses) that can be bought on the street for less than about $600.

When you compare that with the prices of many new compact and subcompact cameras you’ll see that for just $200-$300 more (or less, even) you get much, much more in terms of versatility, expandability and, often, quality.

If you’re planning to spend a few hundred bucks on a new camera, it’s well worth holding off a bit longer to save a few hundred more to buy a DSLR.


Reason #2: Interchangable lenses

Ultra wide angles.

Super sharp primes.

Long reaching telephotos.

Incredibly versatile ultra zooms…

Don’t want to be limited by the built-in optics in a fixed lens camera? A DSLR is exactly what you want because you can have a lens for any situation!

On a budget? No problem!

You can pick up excellent used lenses on eBay or from your local camera shop.

I got my sharpest Pentax 50mm prime lens on eBay for about $40 shipped! A true steal for such high quality glass.


Morganser, Acadia National Park. Pentax *istDS (F 11, 1/1000 @ 200mm - ISO 1600)

Morganser, Acadia National Park. Pentax *istDS (F 11, 1/1000 @ 200mm – ISO 1600)


Reason #3: Faster speed and better image quality

If you want a camera with the speed to make sure you don’t miss those important shots, a DSLR is the sure bet.

Not only will the hardware and software in DSLRs and their lenses give you faster auto focus performance but you will also gain the ability to continuously shoot a high number of frames per second just by holding down the shutter release. This will help ensure that you don’t miss any fast action sports shots…or shots of speedy little kids.

Image quality and detail is another area where the DSLR is a winner.

Because of their larger sensor and pixel size DSLRs are generally able to produce images with a higher dynamic range and less noise, both resulting in clearer, more detailed photographs. Very useful if you want to share or print your photos at larger sizes.


And finally,


Reason #4: Confidence

For aspiring photographers, using a DSLR and a nice lens can give a huge confidence boost.

That boost of confidence can make you more likely to get out and shoot more photos and different types of photos than you would if you just had a point and shoot camera.

And, as I mentioned in my previous post, 5 ways to improve your photography, today!, getting out to shoot more and leaving your comfort zone will help you on your way to becoming an all around better photographer.


So, there you have 4 reasons why you might want to buy a DSLR instead of a compact or other fixed lens camera, even if it means postponing your purchase and saving a bit more money.

These reasons may be compelling for some but not everyone needs nor do they want a DSLR.

To see some reasons why you may NOT want to buy a DSLR be sure to read my companion article, 4 reasons to buy a fixed lens camera instead of a DSLR., coming tomorrow.

Thanks for reading and don’t let the darkroom door hit you on the way out!



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