So I lost my job and decided that the best way to spend my severance money was on a camera. After an exhaustive search of consumer reports and they guy at Mike’s Camera, I settled on the T3i for several reasons.
- First off, I’ve never really been an avid photographer – I’ve forgotten my point and shoot at home for more than one vacation – but everybody who has been unfortunate enough to view what I’ve taken all say I’m “pretty good.” So ,I went with the camera that was “pretty good”. It’s by no means a pro series camera, but it gets the job done and done well.
- Nextly the price, all together my kit was a bit more than $1000 bucks but with that, I got the T3i body, Canon EF-S 18-135mm 1:3.5-5.6 IS lens, 2 batteries for the camera, HDMI cable that I’ll probably never use, UV filter and a 16GB SD memory card. So with all that, I would say it’s not too bad.
- Lastly, accessories: there are many, many, MANY things that you can get to bring this camera up to snuff and allow it to grow with you as you grow as a photobug. From over 300 different lenses ranging from super close up macro lenses, to all out telephoto zoom lenses that will let you pick out a bug on a windshield across the street. So far for my collection, I’ve picked up another lens Canon EF 75-300mm 1:4-5.6 telephoto zoom, Lowepro Fastpack 100 Backpack, Flash diffuser, and a set of Polaroid filters, and, coming to me as I write this, is a new strap (we’ll get in to that later) and battery grip.
- This camera is so much better than I thought it was when I bought it. The pictures come out amazing, crisp clean, everything that I could have asked for.
- The picture quality – for a consumer quality entry level DSLR this thing has an 18MP sensor! That’s like 16 more than my point and shoot!
- It’s fairly light weight and can comfortably be carried around all day given the correct strap (again I’ll get into that in a minute).
- The battery life is awesome; I’ve shot all day at the zoo taking hundreds of photos and not even cracked the shell on the charge.
- It’s easy to use and understand. I’ve never really used a good SLR camera and never had a DSLR before but all the settings are straight forward and up front.
- It’s comfortable; it sits in your hand very nicely, the grips feel natural even for someone with long fingers, such as myself.
- THE STRAP! To put it kindly, this thing sucks! 2 hours into a 6 hour carry, it was gouging my neck so bad I kept checking for blood. It’s too short, and by that I mean by about 6-8 inches, the safe way to carry a camera of this size is slung over you shoulder with it coming to rest under your opposing arm, reach over grab with your main hand and call it happy, but if you carry this thing like that, you are forced to crane your neck and look like a tool, so you are forced to carry over on shoulder and lead it to the possibility of slipping off if you start walking to briskly (at a normal pace).
- The flash – I’ve never taken a photo with this flash that wasn’t washed out or had hard shadows. Even when using this as a supporting light source to say THE SUN, hard shadows, the only way to really elevate this is by either procuring an electronic adjustable and aim-able flash for around $250-$400 bucks, or a flash diffuser, which softens the light coming off of the built-in flash unit and lessens the hard shadows.
So, this camera is a great buy if you are just coming into the world of digital photography. It is easy enough to use for a true beginner, but will grow with you as your skills improve.