Help and advice

Choosing the right camera accessories

If you were lucky enough to receive a camera over Christmas, you may already feel like you’re on your way to becoming the next Annie Leibovitz. If that’s the case, you may be considering whether to take your hobby to the next level by purchasing some specialist add-ons or accessories. Before you buy, here are some tips and hints about how to choose the accessory that’s right for you.

Lenses

While your camera came with a lens to start with, there are plenty of additional lenses that can help you get the effect you’re looking for. Your camera’s main lens is likely to be standard zoom, which is a great all-purpose option. However, if you want to take higher-quality images, especially in low light, a fixed focus lens can be a useful addition.

Wide-aperture lenses can help you get more into your shot, so are ideal for landscape photographers. An anti-shake lens can be used to correct wobbles, whether they come from your hands or an unstable surface (such as a moving vehicle or a boat), so are extremely useful for those who love the great outdoors.

Just remember to check that the lens will be compatible with your camera before you make a decision!

Tripods

It is also possible to avoid blurry images without an anti-shake lens. Tripods originated in the early days of photography, where exposure times were so long that even the steadiest hand would create a blurred picture.

When choosing a tripod, think about where you are most likely to use it. The main factors to balance are weight and sturdiness. Unfortunately, the heaviest tripods are the ones that tend to last longer and offer better stability, so consider this if you will need to carry your equipment for long periods of time.

While carbon fibre tripods are both light and sturdy, they are the most expensive option, and thus best left to the truly committed photographer.

Flashguns

If you take a lot of photographs in poor light, or just want to be able to adjust to backlighting (whether from the sun or an artificial source), then a flashgun can help. It also helps you to take lots of photos very quickly without compromising quality. You’re also much less likely to encounter the red-eye effect with a flashgun, thanks to the light source being further from the camera.

As with lenses, compatibility is a limiting factor, which will help you narrow down your choices. Automated models are good, but it’s nice to have the option of manual control if you need it.

Memory cards

Memory cards are essential for running digital cameras, but a careful choice in this area can really help your photographic capabilities.

The benefits of upgrading to a better memory card are improved speed, better back-up mechanisms, and improved reliability. After all, you don’t want to lose all your photos before you can get them onto your computer or other storage device. An SDHC or SDXC card is a good mid-range choice to help protect your pictures.


© Axonn 2015