If you are thinking of buying a camera for a child who is showing an interest in photography, you will be all too aware that interests change all the time at this age - and next week, next month, next year, they might not be 'into' photography any more.
Not spending too much on a first camera but making sure that it has enough features to keep your child interested is a smart move!
Here are our top 7 tips for choosing a camera for your kids:
- Choose a camera that your child can learn the basics of very quickly. Make sure that the controls and buttons are manageable for the size of your child's hands and that the menus are logical, easy to read, with intuitive icons that are easy to understand.
- Children love to experiment and learn much more through doing so. Consider buying an entry-level DSLR camera that allows adjustment of exposure settings such as ISO, shutter speed and aperture and perhaps, interchangeable lenses (although this is not so vital at the beginner stage). The Pentax K-x Digital SLR and the Canon Rebel XS 10.1 MP are two that come highly recommended.
- Make sure that the LCD screen is large, bright and with great color reproduction. It should be easy to use indoors and outdoors in bright sunlight as there is nothing more frustrating than not being able to see images clearly on the screen.
- Ensure that the sensor resolution is good enough for your requirements, especially if you want to print larger size images, in most cases a 10-14 mega pixel camera should be sufficient at entry level.
- It is disappointing to have to stop taking pictures because the memory is full, so a camera must have the capacity to extend the memory with an SD/SDHC memory card.
- Children will want to download images from their camera, to a computer for editing so the facility to do this via a USB cable is vital.
- If you don't mind buying a second hand camera for your child's first introduction to photography, there are definitely some great bargains to be had. Ask around as many photographers may be willing to sell an older model that, provided it has the features mentioned above, is likely to be a great buy as you can be sure it has been taken care of.