Research Camera Gear for HDR Photography
Use every tool at your disposal to investigate the general types of photography gear you’re interested in for high dynamic range photography, and then zero in on specific makes and models. Keep in mind, too, that because many products work differently, nothing can take the place of a manual dedicated to your specific equipment.
The catch is, not everything is equal. You can get started with a pretty inexpensive compact digital camera and a little tripod, but you won’t have the same flexibility, nor will you be able to consistently achieve the same image quality as a more professional camera and accessories. (The consolation prize for being economical is saving from a few hundred to many thousands of dollars.)
If you’re buying new, take the information here and use it to start off in the right direction. It’s a very powerful feeling to stand in a camera shop, fully informed, knowing what you need while you test different cameras (that you have read up on beforehand).
If you already have a camera but don’t shoot HDR, find out what your options are before running out to get a new model. Maybe you can use what you have and grow into HDR. You’ll be better informed when you plan your next purchase.
When you’re shopping for equipment, use the Internet! Go to manufacturers’ Web sites and look through their product lines to research camera specifications. Compare and contrast. Price your options. Shop for other gear, too, and read reviews.
One word of caution on reviews: You don’t know why a person might hate or love a piece of gear. Maybe the reviewer is an idiot, doesn’t have any talent, didn’t read the manual, or learn how to use the camera or gear effectively. Maybe the reviewer is a paid professional who gets a kickback.
Maybe the review is a genuine, honest assessment of the gear. You never can tell, so always read more than one review before deciding whether a particular model is right for you.
If your camera has an online manual, download it and read it. Hint: You’ll enjoy the ability to magnify it onscreen much larger than the tiny print in the one that comes with your camera.
Make friends at your local camera shop. Having a human connection can often make the difference between getting the right gear for you and wasting time and money on something that doesn’t fit your needs. They don’t expect you to buy everything from them, but they’ll surely appreciate your business.
It’s important to have a plan. To create that plan you need to know what HDR is, see different cameras, learn about optional gear, and know how each piece of gear will contribute to your ability to create HDR images.