I've spent the last few weeks talking specifically about analog cameras. That is, cameras that use film. Now, I'd like to change pace a bit and share with you some of my digital cameras. Digital cameras come in all different shapes and sizes from just about every manufacturer you can think of. Traditionally, there have been two schools of thought when it came to professional digital cameras. You either shot Nikon, or you shot Canon, and you were fiercely loyal to your particular brand. Nowadays, with the advancements in sensor technology, Fuji, Sony, Panasonic, and Pentax all offer cameras that are used by professionals. Digital cameras are broken up into classes depending on the size of their sensor relative to the size of 35mm film. You have full-frame, APS-C, micro 4/3, and several others. Got all that? Good. First up on my digital list is Olivia.
Olivia is a Nikon D7000 camera that I've been using professionally for the last several years. She has served me well through over a hundred weddings, parties, and events and is still going strong some 100,000 photos later. That's the beauty of digital. I can take thousands of pictures at a time, and not have to worry about the physical constraints of film and processing. She's got an APS-C type sensor, which gives my lenses a little longer "reach" when I'm taking pictures. This is super helpful when you want to get that shot of the bride and groom's first kiss as a married couple without the officiant getting all "wrath of God" on you for being all up in their business.
With great power, comes great cost. Or was it responsibility? I can never remember, but the one downside to shooting the latest digital cameras is the price tag. Remember the different formats we talked about earlier? Well, with digital cameras, you've got sensors that are sized in relation to those different film formats and sensors are expensive. APS-C and micro 4/3 are smaller than 35mm film planes and are at the lower end of the spectrum with prices generally under $1200. Full-frame has a sensor that is sized exactly the same as a 35mm frame, 36X24mm. These cameras can range anywhere from $1,200 to over $9000. Medium format digital sensors, used by serious pros for magazine shoots and billboards, are priced accordingly at $30,000 to $50,000. That's no typo. It would be like holding a Mercedes C-Class in the palm of your hands.
If you want to get into digital photography, there will be plenty of great deals during the holiday season for digital camera starter packages. Just do your research, read reviews, and understand that your expectations may not necessarily be your reality when starting out.