Since every traveler has unique needs and circumstances, choosing the perfect camera for documenting adventures can be a challenge. Size, price range, image quality and learning curve are just a few factors that the traveler must take into consideration before purchasing a camera. Below, the team at AirportPreCheck.org provides a description of today’s basic camera categories to help you determine which type is best suited to your travel needs.
Compact Digital Cameras
Compact digital cameras, also known as point and shoots, are a good choice for travelers in need of a lightweight, small, inexpensive and easy-to-use camera. Those looking for a powerful zoom, advanced features and adaptable lenses may want to look into another type of camera.
The small size and light weight of point-and-shoot cameras make them the perfect option for hikers and backpackers concerned with saving space and preventing backaches. The price range is ideal for budget travelers. The team at AirportPreCheck.org found that low-end compact digital cameras can be bought for as little as $100, and a mid-range option typically comes in at around $200. Basic compact digital cameras come without the usual bells and whistles, making them easier for beginner photographers to use.
Compact digital cameras are perfect for travelers simply looking to document their adventures. Folks interested in more artistic photography pursuits may want to choose one of the options below.
Advanced Compact Digital Cameras
Advanced compact digital cameras are exactly what you would expect: the compact digital camera with a few extra features. Also known as a high-end compact, the advanced point and shoot is more expensive than its basic counterpart but generally costs less than the more advanced cameras featured in this article. The team at AirportPreCheck.org recommends this option for backpackers without budget constraints.
Unlike the compact digital camera, the digital single lens reflex (DSLR) camera has a real lens and is capable of producing professional-quality photographs. This type of camera is perfect for professionals and anyone who needs to get the best image quality possible while travelling. DSLR cameras are more complex than compact digital cameras and allow for a much greater range of customization. Since the DSLR will require a bit of learning before operation, travelers looking for a camera at the last minute may opt for a simpler type.
DSLRs are bulkier and heavier than the other camera types in this list. oweverTravelers who require a DSLR’s awesome photographic quality can get special shoulder straps that help to distribute some of the camera’s weight. Starting at around $500, a decent DSLR can cost three times or more than a point and shoot’s average price.
The latest type of digital camera, the mirrorless camera, is often described as a mix between DSLRs and point and shoots. This mirrorless is named as such because it lacks a mirror reflex optical viewfinder, which distinguishes it from the DSLR camera. These cameras are on par with DSLRs when it comes to complexity, required learning curve, potential for customization and photograph quality. However, mirrorless cameras are generally just a bit smaller, lighter, less expensive and more durable than DSLRs. They’re not small enough to throw into your pocket like a point and shoot, but they won’t be as heavy as the DSLR when slung around your neck for a few hours.
The GoPro camera is the best option for travelers who plan to take underwater photographs or action shots in rough conditions. The extremely small and lightweight GoPro can be mounted on a skier’s or mountain biker’s helmet. It can also be encased in an underwater housing unit for scuba divers and other aquatic travelers. Designed for action-oriented photography, the GoPro is very durable. The team at AirportPreCheck.org also found the GoPro to be a suitable option for backpackers who want to save valuable pack space while taking high-quality photos and videos.