For my stepson's 13th birthday I gifted him his first DSLR, it was a way for us to bond, and do things together. I have fond memories of us going on little walks and pulling out the cameras and experimenting. As he got older the photography bug grew, and he starting shooting and upgrading his equipment. That passion, took him to many countries, and created many memories for him growing up. So, if you are thinking about buying your mini-me their first camera, how do you know which is best. Well, a few things you to consider particularly since children’s interests can change in a flash. You can, however, still support their hobby without breaking the bank.
Here are our top tips for choosing a camera for your kid.
1. Size Matters - Make sure that the controls and buttons are manageable and that the size of the camera is suited to the size of their hands. The menus should also be logical, easy to read and have intuitive icons that are easy to understand.
2. Learn by Doing - Children love to experiment and tend to learn faster when they are hands on. An entry-level DSLR camera will give them enough settings like exposure, ISO, shutter speed and aperture.
3. Big Screen – The digital screen on the back should be large, bright and have great color reproduction. Another thing to consider is how easy it is to see in both indoor lighting and outdoors lighting conditions.
4. Pixels – Most camera’s will have plenty of resolution, but if you are purchasing second hand you want to consider the sensor resolution. In general a 10-14 mega pixel camera is a sufficient for an entry level photographer.
5. Memory Cards – Obviously, they will need some SD/SDHC memory cards, to store all those amazing images. The only suggestion is a little more research, buy from a camera store and have backups in case of failure.
6. Add-ons – After a day of shooting your mini-me will want to download images from the camera onto a computer for viewing or editing so a USB cable or external device to transfer the images from the card to the computer will be an essential.
Finally, if you are concerned about price, and worry that this is just a fad, you could invest in a used camera. Many photographers sell their ‘older’ camera’s to upgrade and you may be able to get a deal. Your other option for a second hand camera is check in the camera stores, they often have a used section.