Which DSLR camera do I buy?

I asked myself this question when I thought it was time for me to upgrade to a DSLR camera. I had a Canon S3-IS which was an excellent point & shoot camera (P&S) with an option for manual aperture & shutter speed operations. I had used the S3-IS for about 4+ years and it set me up well for the DSLR operations as I got a chance to experiment with the manual controls.

Now for the big decision on which DSLR to buy. First consideration was the budget! I had a budget of 25,000 INR (indian rupees). Very quickly I realized that this budget wasnt going to be sufficient. The reason was that at this budget I would have got an entry level DSLR (like Canon 1100D) which should be sufficient for most people currently using a P&S. In my case since my P&S camera had manual settings that I had played around with a fair bit, I would have outgrown something like a 1100D pretty soon. The next level in the camera would cost me atleast 10,000 rupees more. I had to convince myself to move my budget to 35,000+ INR.

Next consideration was the brand of the Camera. Like in most cases, the two major ones under scrutiny were from Canon & Nikon. Luckily for me I had a bunch of colleagues who were shutterbugs and helped me a fair bit to make a decision. I had my friends pretty much equally distributed between these two camps. Hence I could make an easy assessment of the pro-cons. Of course, you could also read a lot on the internet on sites like dpreview.com and so on.

From some of this analysis, I started leaning towards the Canon brand apparently because of the availability of Lens from 03rd party manufacturers which will cost less. Second reason was that the Canon bodies come with a AF (Auto Focus) motor whereas Nikon ones dont. You need a different type of lens for Nikon due to this reason.

Finally – the comparison came down to Canon 600D Vs Nikon 5100. Both of them almost equally rated by dpreview and similarly priced. Nikon had a better lens quality but Canon scored on overall features. For Amateur photography, image quality is good enough for both. I made a decision to go with Canon 600D

Next was the place to buy and the deal. My colleague suggested Foto Circle in Koramangala where I did get a good deal. For 38,800 I got a few accessories as free as part of the deal – Tripod, 16GB Memory Card, UV Filter, Sun Guard, Live View Screen Guard, Cleaning Kit, Camera Bag & 4GB card (from manufacturer), 6months interest free EMI.

For renting of lens, see my blog here – http://golumolu.in/blogwp/2013/01/where-do-you-get-rental-lenses-for-dslr-cameras