Photo Credit: Devaugn n Hughson
Buying a camera already requires a lot of research, and if you’ll be using it for your travels you need to find something durable, lightweight and the correct combination of lenses or simply the one perfect lens.
Not to mention the tripod, extra batteries or anything else you might want to bring. There is no one camera or lens that will fit everyone as everybody has a different style of photography but let me share the steps I took to find my camera setup.
What quality of pictures would you like to be taking.
Do you simply want some memories of the places you will go or do you want to make large prints or sell them? If you plan on selling, or want high-resolution pictures, you would need to go with a DSLR which is on the more expensive side. If you mostly just want vacation photos, then a simple handheld point and shoot will do. I started photography using the Canon Powershot series and they never let me down.
Where are you going and how do you plan on traveling?
Will you be trekking through the jungles and deserts or will you be staying in more climate friendly areas? If you plan on trekking through tough conditions you need something that can withstand those specific conditions, which most likely means you will need something that is weatherproof. If not, a simple point and shoot will do fine.
What do you like taking pictures of?
If you love taking pictures of wild animals you will need a camera that can have interchangeable lenses to let you get in nice and close with a Telephoto lens.
In the end, if you are looking for quality I recommend spending the extra cash and getting a DSLR. If not, then chose a point and shoot of your choice.
I first looked for the camera; because of the nature of the pictures I am aiming for, it had to be a DSLR. The top brands being Canon and Nikon I started my research there. With the budget in mind as well as looking for a certain quality I ended with the Canon 7D or the Nikon D7100. Looking through reviews, weighing the price and performance differences between brands and durability all came into play. Out of the hundreds of review sites out there I ended up doing most of my research through The Digital Picture as well as Ken Rockwell as they both have a pretty extensive reviews on all cameras, lenses and even accessories.
In the end the 7D and D7100 came to a tie. The Canon takes the lead on responsiveness as well as faster continuous shooting. The Nikon though does have more focal points as well as some bonus features such as auto-focus while recording. I couldn’t make a clear cut decision based solely on reading reviews, so I moved to Youtube to see if I could find some hands on reviews. I ended up at Digital Revs channel where I found a couple reviews of both the Nikon and Canon. Still after watching this, both cameras were pretty close competitors. From everything I saw and read the 7D is built to withstand almost anything. Someone decided to donate their Canon 7D for a durability test and they froze it, burnt it, threw it down stairs, hit it with a truck and it still was able to take pictures. You can check out that video by clicking here.
After all of my research I went with the Canon 7D simply because I will be taking my camera places that will take a toll on any camera, I need something that will make it through our entire journey.
Photo Credit: The Digital Picture
From here I moved on to the doing some lens research. I knew I wanted a telephoto zoom lens, at least 300mm, as well as a normal zoom length. Seeing how the standard package for a 7D comes with a 28-135, that would be my normal zoom. As for the telephoto zoom I went with the EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM once again due to the durability of Canons L series, as well as the picture quality I would be able to work with.
There are hundreds of different set ups you could use to go travel and take pictures. If you are a traveler, what camera did you pick to accompany you on your travels?