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Good To Know before you Invest in Your First Camera

We have two retail stores, one in Montana and one in Idaho, and at both stores we often get asked the question “what is important to know before I invest in my first camera”. In fact, it might be the question we get asked most frequently! After having this conversation with a multitude of first-time buyers, we know a lot about this topic!

We find that people who are discovering they have an interest in photography, or that have a family and want to capture the memories with the best possible outcome, are most often going to choose to invest in themselves with the purchase of a quality camera.

The important first step that we want to you to work through is to get a clear understanding of the intended use for your new camera.

Here is an easy list to help you get started identifying your intended use:

  • Will you be using it primarily indoors or outdoors

  • What type of photography will be your primary use i.e.: still life, nature, people, landscapes

  • What is your budget

The answer to these questions will direct you to the right type of camera for you.

Now that you have clarity about your intended use, here are the Four Main Types of Cameras, with a brief description about each:

Point and shoot

These cameras are compact and convenient, and generally intended for beginners, providing automatic modes.


A step up from a point and shoot, the bridge camera provides for some changes to camera settings; they are larger and have more rugged bodies


This stands for Digital Single-Lens Reflex. These cameras have a mirror inside that creates an optical image to allow you to see what you are going to capture.


Obviously, this camera does not have a mirror, it provides you a digital image of what is in front of the camera. Many photographers consider the mirrorless as the wave of the future in camera technology.

Once you have determined which type of camera, you can fine tune your choices by researching these camera benefits & features:

  • Sensors

  • Size

  • Resolution (megapixels)

  • High-ISO capabilities

And lastly you will dive into Lens Quality, Autofocus and Drive Speeds, Durability, and Ergonomics and Handling.

Photography is our passion and our business. We truly enjoy helping future photographers through the process of choosing the right first camera for them.

So… Call Us and let’s talk about it!

The Yellowstone Camera Store

16 N Canyon Street

West Yellowstone, MT 59758

(406) 646-5191

Perfect Light Camera & Supply

2169 E 17th Street

Idaho Falls, Idaho 83404

(208) 523-6789


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