The Adventure Travel Camera Buyer’s Guide was Updated December 2017
Anyone who travels knows how important it is to capture memories from your trips. Not only for yourself, but to share with family, friends, or anyone who might not have the same opportunity. Capturing memories can be anything from images to written words in a note book. In this camera buyer’s guide, our focus is on the visual memories, and to do that you need a camera. It’s important to have the right camera for you, and I hope that my travel camera buyer’s guide will help you find a perfect fit.
What do you plan on doing with it?
I think this is the logical first question to ask yourself. Knowing how you plan on using your camera will steer you in the direction you need to go when selecting a camera.
Set a Reasonable Budget based on your needs.
I say reasonable because more often than not people will want more camera than they are willing to spend money on. My best advice is to think of this as an investment. Spend the money now and get what you want rather than skimping and then outgrowing your purchase and having to spend more money only a few months later.
Camera Modes and What They Mean
Before I dive into the different types of cameras, I wanted quickly review some of the camera modes that you may come across and how they benefit you.
As you may have guessed, Manual mode gives you full control over everything. If you have any desire to do creative shots like long exposure, or star photography, this will be an important mode to have. It can be found in all DSLR, and Mirrorless camera’s as well as some point and shoot cameras. You are unlikely to find it in a smartphone.
This mode is crucial for those who plan on shooting time-lapse or long exposure photography longer than 30 seconds. Bulb mode is exactly like manual mode expect that the shutter will stay open for as long as you hold the shutter button or remote button down. This will allow you to create very long exposures. This mode works best with a remote trigger.
This mode allows you to chose how much light your camera takes in via the aperture, everything else is adjusted automatically based on that. This allows you more creative freedom without having to think a whole lot about camera settings. If you know you want to get a certain look that is achieved by having the aperture opened to a certain point, this will be the mode that allows you to do that quickly. I do most of my shooting in this mode.
Much like aperture priority, this mode allows you to adjust one setting and the camera does the rest. In this case that setting is shutter speed. This mode is great if you know you need a certain shutter speed to achieve a look. For example, if I was photographing a skier and I knew I wanted to freeze the action, I would use this mode to set a higher shutter speed so that the skier was frozen in place in the shot.
This mode allows you to adjust any of the settings and the camera will automatically adjust the other settings. This works great if you want to be able to change any of the settings on the fly, but don’t don’t want to go full manual, or bounce between shutter priority and aperture priority.
This mode does everything for you except compose the photo. Use this mode if getting the shot is the only thing that matters. I only use this mode when i’m handing my camera to a non-photographer to get a shot of me.
Some cameras offer modes other than what I mentioned, but many of them are gimmicky and don’t work all that well. In my experience, anything i’ve needed to do with a camera was able to be done with the modes I mentioned above. For that reason, I suggest using these descriptions as a guideline to determine which modes you may need and use that information when purchasing your next camera. Let’s dive into the Awesome Travel Camera Buyer’s Guide!