Cameras are all over. Your laptop has one while your smartphone has got two. And your doorbell is likely to have one. Interestingly, we’re using cameras more than ever before but with minimum knowledge of how they work. If you’re getting one because you are ready to become a freelance photographer in Dubai, you’ll still want to save.
Getting the right freelancing camera can be challenging. Product manufacturers don’t make things easier, either. Alien words such as f-numbers and ISO on the specs sheet can be more confusing. And even if you manage to grasp their meaning, there’s still a spectacular range of options to confront. That’s why we’ve come up with this guide to help you wade through the quagmire of excess jargon, information, and acronyms. It’ll help you know the characteristics of a great camera deal without necessarily taking a photography course in Dubai.
8 Useful Features To Look For When Buying A Camera
All cameras, from the laptop’s small webcam to the full-frame professional brands like Sony, Canon, and Nikon, operate on the same principles. So, you’ll want to consider these eight essential factors when selecting your photography camera.
The most critical part of choosing a camera is the type of lens it uses. Lenses often cost more than renting photography equipment. And they’ll have more influence on the quality of a good photo than the camera itself.
Anamorphic Camera Lenses Image from FD Times
If you intend to use anamorphic lenses with PL mounts, then you should get a camera that packs a PL mount. Doing so will whittle down your choices. But you can still purchase an EF mount camera with a PL conversion adapter.
You should check a camera’s workflow before making a decision. The workflow is especially important for digital photographers who do plenty of post-shoot work. Regardless, it’s vital to consider what happens to your footage after all the fun that comes with shooting.
Initially, R3D cameras were problematic at post-editing for additional expensive transcoding hardware. However, that’s no longer an issue, thanks to the latest editing programs that can handle native R3D files. Don’t choose a camera that can only support RAW files unless you’re ready to purchase high-quality color correction software.
The expanding gig economy in Dubai means you can earn money as a freelance photographer. Currently, for example, Netflix is buying new projects with 4K image quality or better. And you wouldn’t exclude them as potential buyers for your projects. Moreover, most companies that distribute digital content require the 4K minimum resolution. Thankfully, there’s a wide range of best 4K cameras you could buy.
Full-HD 1080p vs. 4K Ultra HD Image Comparison from Digiarity MacXDVD
Some enthusiasts will tell you that 2K is the market standard for theatrical channels. While that could be true, it may not hold for long. You don’t want to blow up your 2K or HD acquisition simply because it doesn’t match the new 4K standard.
The initial Exposure Index is among the vital things to know before purchasing your camera. Consider getting a camera with a super-speed lens if you’re covering feature films. The lenses are particularly useful for shooting low-lit pictures. But there are other options if you can’t afford these expensive super-fast lenses.
First, complete a test shoot with the camera you’re eyeing. Remember to do this under your ideal lighting setup. In this way, you’ll avoid manufacturers who stretch the truth concerning their low noise and native ISO features. So, you’ll want to shoot the test footage and pass it through color correction to ensure you’re happy with the data and noise levels.
Cameras shoot with a particular codec. Therefore, check if your editing software can cope with these files, particularly for a new camera. Keep in mind that some camcorders shoot both ProRez and RAW files.
How Different Camera Codecs Compare from ZACUTO
But you’ll avoid shooting in simultaneous mode to lower the cost of data management, more so hard drives. RAW codec shots require an incredible data storage space. It’s the reason some cameras like the Sony F65 come with a full range of processors, storage drives, and decks to manage the massive data needs. Thus, you will require a lot of infrastructure to take beautiful pictures.
Camera Sensor Size
Standard cameras pack between 18mm and 35mm sensor sizes. The latter is an excellent choice for its depth of field. And while you can get over 35mm sensors, you should be ready to compromise the depth of field. Larger sensor sizes have a somewhat shallow depth of field, making it tougher to work the focus-puller.
Image for sensor size comparisons from Twitter
You’ll want to consider flexible equipment for shooting hi-speed images. Some cameras can change the sensor size when shooting slow-motion footage like in athletic events.
The camera size does matter, particularly if you’ll be taking most shots without a tripod stand. We recommend that you consider a compact, portable model for shots in tight quarters. Moreover, you need to consider the weight of the lens. Some lenses are often heavier than the digital camera itself. The professional Sony FS700 and the Panasonic Mini VariCam are among the ideal camera sizes you could try.
Besides, the best DSLR cameras are lightweight and portable. However, they are not suitable to use with a real lens. Adding a lens to these cameras makes them fiddly to handle. And they’ll lose their robustness, particularly for the mini HDMI port.
The Camera Shutter
The shutter is the next most crucial characteristic to consider in a camera. Most camera brands will let you choose between rolling and global shutters. Rolling shutters use the analog TV signal that scans on photosites line by line. On the other hand, global shutters activate photosites simultaneously.
Rolling shutter vs. Global shutter comparison image from Arducam
The latter is an excellent choice if you’ll be shooting action pictures. Instant activation of photosites allows you to pan the camera quickly without compromising image quality. If you tried the same with a non-global shutter on a tall building, for example, it would appear leaning at an angle.
Purchasing a camera has never been easier. It’s difficult to get one that will just shoot effortlessly. But getting the right camera still needs some effort. There are tons of options to consider. You’ll want to ignore a lot of confusing numbers, more so for a novice freelance photographer in Dubai. But first, you should figure out your photography niche. Doing this will help you know the type of photographer you are and, ultimately, the right camera for the job.