Upgrading from a ‘phone, compact or bridge camera to an interchangeable lens camera is an exciting move that takes your photography to a new level, enabling you to take greater control and produce higher quality images.
Choosing the right model to go for isn’t easy as there are lots of options available. Ideally you want something that keeps things simple and doesn’t intimidate at the outset, but that gives you everything that you’ll need further down the line when you know a bit more about photography.
In this article our friends at Photoventure take a look at some great cameras, both SLRs and compact system cameras, that fit the bill.
1. Canon EOS 100D/Canon EOS Rebel SL1
Billed as the World’s Smallest SLR when it was announced, the Canon 100D is significantly smaller than Canon’s other APS-C format SLRs.
Nevertheless, it has a chunky grip and a mode dial to allow quick exposure mode selection with the enthusiast favourite options (aperture priority, shutter priority and manual) finding a place alongside fully automatic and scene mode options for less experienced users.
There’s also Canon’s Creative Auto mode which helps novices take control over the camera without using photographic terms.
Like the D3300, the 100D makes heavy use of the screen for setting selection.
However, the 100D has the advantage of touchscreen technology so you have choice of using physical controls or tapping the screen to navigate and select the options.
Many will find touch-control more intuitive, especially those used to using a smartphone for their photography.
2. Nikon D3300
Nikon’s D3X00 line of SLRs is one of the most popular options for novice photographers and the latest incarnation, the D3300 is a real cracker.
One of its most attractive features for those learning about photography is the Guide Mode in which the camera takes the user through the step-by-step process of selecting settings to shoot a variety of subjects.
In addition, the D3300 has a class-leading pixel-count of 24.2million and this, coupled with the EXPEED 4 processing engine and the (APS-C format) sensor’s low-pass filterless design enables it to resolve an impressively high level of detail.
Rather than being covered in numerous buttons and dials, the D3300 has quite a clean appearance and the many settings selection settings are made via the menu and Graphic User Interface on the 3-inch 921,000-dot screen.
The camera can display three circles that represent shutter speed, aperture and sensitivity to help convey the exposure settings.
The D3300 is an excellent camera and like all the others mentioned here has automatic exposure modes for the early days, as well advanced options for when you’ve grown in experience.
SEE MORE: Nikon D3300 review
3. Canon EOS 700D/ EOS Rebel T5i
The 700D/T5i sits at the top of Canon’s consumer range, just below the Canon EOS 60D which gets ‘enthusiast-level’ billing.
Like the Canon 100D, the 700D has an APS-C sized CMOS sensor with 18 million effective pixels and phase detection pixels to assist with focusing when shooting video or composing images on the screen in Live View mode.
There’s also the same collection of JPEG-only Creative Filters (Grainy Black and White, Soft Focus, Fish-Eye, Art Bold, Water Painting, Toy Camera and Miniature Effect) which can be previewed in Live View mode.
While it may not have the pixel-count of the D3300 or the tiny size of the 100D (though it is by no means huge), the 700D has a vari-angle touch-sensitive screen.
This is a real bonus when composing images from awkward angles as it can be articulated to point where it is visible and the AF point can be set with a tap of the screen.
And of course, it’s capable of producing superb images with plenty of detail, good exposure and rich colours.
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