Good Camera for 10 Year Old

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Shox1, Nov 8, 2010.

  1. Shox1 macrumors newbie

    Nov 23, 2007
    I've got a 10-year old daughter who has shown interest in photography for the past 3-4 years. My questions...should we look at getting her a cheaper DSLR with the ability to change lenses, settings, etc. to provide her that opportunity, or should we go with a P&S which is, more than likely, easier to use to get a good photo, but not might give her "options"? I'm leaning toward the DSLR, but would love the advice. Thanks for any help.
  2. splashnader macrumors 6502a


    Jul 1, 2008
    Via Satellite
    I was going to say go for a simple P&S camera. But Nikon's D3000 DSLR camera comes with exceptional how to guides, built into the camera menu system, to actually walk you through the process of understanding the relationship of shutter speed versus your lens aperture, making it very straighforward for a child or anyone else for that matter. It's a great camera to learn on and fun way to get a kid off and running. It may be a bit pricey brand new, but you could easily find one for under $300 used if you looked.
  3. compuwar macrumors 601


    Oct 5, 2006
    Northern/Central VA
    I'd ask her- she can tell you if she wants to haul around a big DSLR or a smaller point and shoot- when I was that age, I often used my parent's SLR- but only the photographer knows what they'd like to get out of it and how much photography trumps convenience for them.

    If you're looking at potential Christmas presents, I know it sort of kills the surprise, but I still think it's a big enough long-term investment that it's worth asking.

  4. TheReef macrumors 68000


    Sep 30, 2007
    NSW, Australia.
    If she's showing an interest, I would consider a really cheap second hand entry level dSLR off eBay (that was a mouthful :p). There's plenty out there, you'd be surprised how cheap you can find them used...

    Pentax K100D / *ist DL, Canon 350D, Nikon D50/D40, Oly e300 / e330 ... etc

    They'll give her more room to play, grow into and learn than a P&S will.
  5. Pikemann Urge macrumors 6502

    Jan 3, 2007
    It goes without saying: DSLR by default. Unless of course she insists otherwise. DSLRs are the best tools for beginners (slide film is the second choice). You can't learn as well with a compact. And you won't have as much fun.

    It doesn't matter what brand, but the smaller the better I suppose. You might prefer Pentaxes because they take AA cells. No custom charger required. And K lenses are everywhere and cheap.
  6. jbg232 macrumors 65816


    Oct 15, 2007
    I think you have two choices:

    1) A cheaper DSLR like the XTi or especially the XSi. You can get them used off craigslist for very cheap nowadays as they are "bridge" cameras and are frequently sold. Plus, with today's economy there are some fabulous deals once you know the prices. Just make sure to bargain and start low. This is good because you can always keep it in green circle or program mode while she's starting to learn and then she can learn how to use Av, Tv, and M when she's more comfortable. It also guarantees she won't miss a shot.

    2) An S90 or S95 which can be used in the same way as the cheaper DSLR. She can carry it around with her pretty easily although I would say the control system is MUCH more intuitive on a dedicated DSLR. I really see these cameras as cameras for people who love and know how to use their DSLR already but need P&S capability. Using them effectively in Av, TV, M, etc is much harder for a beginner I would think.
  7. Matty-p macrumors regular

    Apr 3, 2010
    im, fifteen i had my 350d and asortment of lenses for a couple of years and love it woulds not change it for anything the pictures are beautiful and 8mp is plenty don't get caught by the mp buzz more mp is not a better camera! i would advise to get some big fast cf's and shoot raw and jpg and then in a year or two when she understands raw ands photography she has more scope for editing
  8. macrumormonger macrumors 6502

    Sep 22, 2009
    Los Angeles, CA
    Start off with a Canon G12, or something equivalent. It's still has manual functions and shoots RAW so she can PP to her hearts content. DSLR is when she turns 16. If you give her DSLR now, she'll expect a car by the time she's 16. You don't want that. Interchangeable lens just means more stuff to break.
  9. Phrasikleia macrumors 601


    Feb 24, 2008
    Over there------->
    Eh. Most kids want a car when they turn 16 anyway. I'd be inclined to start the child out with a DSLR so that she can practice with something like a 'nifty fifty', if not as a first lens, at least a year or so down the road. There are so many old DSLRs kicking around for cheap these days that it doesn't have to be an extravagant purchase.

    But a G-series PnS isn't a bad suggestion. A G12 is fairly new and expensive, though. For a 10-year old, who is likely to break or lose the camera, I'd aim lower than that.
  10. MaxxTraxx macrumors 6502

    Jul 2, 2008
    I'm sorry, but I seriously couldn't recommend a dSLR for a 10 year old.
  11. TheReef macrumors 68000


    Sep 30, 2007
    NSW, Australia.
    It depends on the kid.
    I'd much rather put $300 towards something constructive, rather than something like an Xbox.
  12. pna macrumors 6502

    May 27, 2005
    I agree. My father was an avid film photographer. He died when I was 10, and at that time had asked an artist friend of his to teach us the art of photography so that we could use his equipment and get out of it what he had. I think the lessons started when I was 11, and they were all on his Canon A-1 and similar bodies. I learned a ton using those bodies, and never felt like they were too 'grown up' or complicated to use.

    If the question is whether or not a 10-year old should be running around with $1000 worth of camera equipment vs. a $250 point and shoot, then no question I'd come down on the side of the point and shoot. But given how cheap (and good) the older used bodies are (<$300 with kit lens), I'd say to go DSLR if you think she'd be able to handle it.

    In either case, you should keep in mind that it's pretty unlikely she'll start using a camera and be so hooked that she keeps at it for the rest of her life. I learned all of the basics of photography when I was young, then dabbled in it in HS and college, then pretty much sat out the entire transition as digital was coming of age. It's only now that I'm returning to photography more seriously, and building on that foundation. Investing a lot of money in a really nice camera is unlikely to be money well spent when spending much less money will have the same result for a 10 year old.
  13. Consultant macrumors G5


    Jun 27, 2007
  14. SkyBell macrumors 604


    Sep 7, 2006
    Texas, unfortunately.
    I would go with a point-and-shoot honestly. Even your cheaper models these days produce some pretty darn good pictures, decent enough to be proud of I would think anyway. A DSLR just seems like something else expensive to break.
  15. BeachChair macrumors 6502a

    Apr 11, 2008
    Copenhagen, Denmark
    I can't help but feel a dSLR's size would be intimidating to such a young girl.
    If you really think she's ready for a more advanced camera, consider a mirrorless camera. Either a NEX or a m43

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