As a DSLR owner, I always get this, “Which is the best camera to buy in a certain budget”. And every time I suggest a particular model, I am not satisfied with the way I answer their question. I am just forced to name a model, instead of giving them knowledge to buy a camera as per their requirement.

I also feel that though google provides the answer, it does not always give the best answer as there is someone behind the guide and some websites just copy, paste the spec sheet from official websites and come to a blind verdict and some even include paid promotions.

Only the DSLR body. The factore like megapixel, fps , inbuilt bluetooth wifi etc depends on this.
The lens to be fitted on body (The factors like aperture (which is related to low light image quality and background blur, Zooming etc depends on this).

I believe in buying as per requirement rather than seeing the feature list of the camera. It is sensible to avoid buying something with “n” number of features which we don’t use and rather invest in something which we use.

This blog is mainly intended for new buyers for a budget around 30-50 thousand.

Every camera company has different classes of camera including in pro makers like nikon and canon.
Beginner  – cost 20,000 to 50,000 Rs
Intermediate – cost 60,000 to 1,00,000 Rs
Advanced- > 1,00,000  Rs

Hasselblad H6D 400c. It costs approx 32 lakh Indian rupees. 

I will avoid much about the advanced camera series. The advanced series are always the best, but they will be very expensive and my readers will seldom need advice on buying it. Generally the problem arises in deciding which to buy. Either the beginner series or the intermediate. The common problem is due to the notion that the higher we pay the better product we get. But this does not always apply to DSLRs.

Diagram of working VIBRATION REDUCTION technology in Nikon cameras.  It helps in getting good pictures in low light.

The factor which primarily decides the camera’s quality is the image quality. But we are so used to seeing the specs of mobile cameras which usually advertise the sensor’s megapixel and some not so accurate technical stuff, which we usually ignore. But when closesly observed, there will be features with further specifications like f 1.7, zeiss lens, glass lens, OIS etc which are many other factors helping a camera produce better images. In case of a mobile, these are fixed and cannot be changed. But in DSLR’s it is provisional to change and hence there is a need to choose wisely. A 4 lakh camera body is of no use if fitted with a  cheap lens which results in wrong lens and camera body combinaition.

I would like to give the latest iPhone camera as an example. Though it is equipped with one of the best camera, people still wonder how it produces the best picture quality despite camera being only 12 MP.

This picture of a mobile camera advertisements shows the 5 other features used along with the megapixels of two cameras to good image quality including flash and OIS.

Now coming to the main topic about selecting the camera, in my personal opinion it is important to note that:
1. Almost all the beginner range cameras have the same sensor image quality.
2. Some the cameras with slightly greater price have features which are rarely used
3. Some features which are thought as needed will further require accessories which again costs 30-40,000 many sometimes.

One of the biggest mistakes the beginners do while buying a camera is solely thinking of the best camera body that can be bought with the affordable money. But we must not forget that best images are not made only by the camera, but also certain supporting accesories which should be bought. For example if Rs 50,000 is all spent for a camera body with no money left to buy accesories, It is not pssible to make the camera to perform its best.

Vanguard Alta pro 2+ tripod. I bought this tripod my first tripod failed me badly.

 In my experience I did this mistake of spending all the money on camera. But as I wanted to photograph landscapes I wanted a tripod. So I decided to buy a  cheap tripod which costed around 1800 thinking that tripod is just a stick kind of thing to keep camera. But the result of that ignorant decision was “My tripod broke in between a waterfall and I caught my camera centimetres before falling into water”. So it is necessary to carefully understand the requirements and then decide what equipment goes with what and if it is within the budget.

Picture of SD card on left and CF card on right. Carefully selecting a memory card is also important to get the best performance of your camera.

Here I have listed out the best photographic rig that can be bought with a budget less than 50,000 following the requirements.

1. Capturing everyday events:
A decent image quality better than in other form of cameras available is what the buyer requires, a decent camera body with a 18-55 mm lens. Also recommended to buy 55-250 or 70-300 lens if budget allows. External flash is also optional.

Recommended cameras:
1. Nikon d3400 with kit lens
2. Nikon d3300 with kit lens
3. Canon 1300d with kit lens

Nikon d3400 with 18-55mm VR2 kit lens.

2. Portraits:
Professional portrait photography is different from clicking snapshots. A normal 18-55 kit lens will not help much in this direction. Rather swapping the 18-55mm lens for a 50mm prime lens will enablei taking good portraits. Buying a 85mm 1.8 also helps if affordable.

Recommended cameras:
The above mentioned cameras and also 50mm 1.8D prime lens makes it a good option.

Canon 50mm f1.8 lens.

3. Landscape: Landscape photography is not just taking simple snapshots with a particular background. It requires different exposures like long exposure etc for which needs a tripod. So a kit lens is for beginners. Instead of  doing a mistake of buying a zoom lens combo buying a tripod to get stable pictures is much better.

The same cameras mentioned under Capturing everyday events. The ultra wide lenses used by pro landscape photographers are very expensive and kit lens does a fine job at 18mm.

4. Street photography: Street photography requires a good camera with a flexible lens . I would recommend a single lens which is having 18mm to more than 100mm focal length range as it allows to get wide angle as well as zoomed shots.

Same Cameras mentioned under everyday swapping cameras. An additional 18-105mm lens or 18- 140mm lens can be bought in case of Nikon. If Canon, then a 18-135mm lens additionally recommended.
Latest lenses lile tamaron 18-400mm give amazing flexibility but cost around 45K for lens only.

5. Birding or wildlife photography: Bird photography requires a zoom lens with a high fps, so a 70-300 mm lens is best choice.

1. Nikon d7100. 
2.Canon 80d.
As it has a higher fps it will be easy tocapture birds. The beginner series of both Canon and Nikon gives around 3.5 fps, which I personally felt is very slow for bird photography.

Nikon d7100 with 18-105mm VR kit lens.You can buy only body and pair with telephoto lens for birding.


6. Event photography: Event photography usually will be indoors and the linghting will be inadequate most of the time to get a well exposed shot. Incrasing ISO beyond 1600 will give a good exposure with a lot of noise making the pic unusable. So it is better to buy the cheap kit lens and buy a external flash to get good indoor photos.

I recommend buying a good full frame camera if getting paid for the photography as there is an obligation to deliver high quality images. Otherwise the cameras listed for daily snapping are good enough to click events when external flash is used to properly light the scene.

I recommend yongnuo yn 560 mark3 for external flash.

Yongnuon yn 560 mark 3 is decent flash with good lightning capacity. It also has a inbuilt receiver.

There are many more genres of photography . If interested in knowing any other genre than the ones above, please leave a comment and I will make sure to attend and clarify.
All the camera and lens combo are in the 25-50 thousand range (Sports photography gear might cost more than 50K) . And only nikon and canon are included as I find them interesting and good. There are other companies also which can be checked. I have tried to keep the expenses as reasonable as possible by suggesting cameras, which meet maximum requirements for the minimum price.

Some additional information needed along with the above:
1. Buying a good memory card. A slow memory card of bad quality will reduce the overall speed of the camera and thereby affects the outcome.

Lena cleaning kit made by zeiuss including blower, cleaning brush and cleaning liquid and lens tissues.

2. A lens cleaning kit should come handy. A lens covered with smudges will not give good images no matter how expensive it is.

Please drop comments to further furnish your requirements. As there are too many options, I may have not explained everything here.
So feel free to comment for further doubts and comments.

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