Affordable Interchangeable Lens Camera
Samsung NX Mini The Samsung NX Mini is the least expensive camera we've seen that offers interchangeable lenses, available for $274.99.

Cameras with interchangeable lenses do not have built-in lenses, instead they provide the option of using many different lenses. Compact cameras tend to have a single built-in lens and make compromises in order to fit the lens on a small body, achieve a good price point and ensure the camera can take wideangle and telephoto (zoom) shots. Cameras with interchangeable lenses do not compromise as much, they provide what are generally higher end camera bodies and permit the user to decide which lenses they'd like to own. A wider array of lenses will permit more creativity and photographic control in your photographs if you learn how to use them.

Examples of How to Use Different Lenses

The following photos demonstrate some of the different creative options with various lenses. Each lens has its own personality, capabilities and flaws. Sometimes the flaws make for great photos of a certain type, sometimes a lenses unique performance characteristics, such as a very wide aperture or a extremely large max focal length, will permit photos you couldn't otherwise take. For a serious photographer one can argue that the lenses are more important than the camera body.


Bokeh Butterfly
photo of butterfly with selective focus and bokeh blurThe following photo by aussigall shows a butterfly taken with selective focus and a unique bokeh / blur pattern in the background. 100mm at f3/5 on a Canon 400D (XTi).
Bench in the Park
photo of a bench in the parkPhoto by rawheadrex shows a wonderful park shot taken with a Kern Switar 25mm f1.4 lens on a GF1 - Micro Four Thirds mirrorless interchangeable lens camera.
Oslo Fashion Week 2010
photo of a model on a catwalkPhoto by gcardinal shows the versatility of a wide aperture at 200mm telephoto. Taken on a D3X DSLR via a 70-200mm VRII at 200mm f/2.8, the camera captures a model on the catwalk for NICE at Oslo Fashion Week 2010.

Smallest Cameras with Interchangeable Lenses

You want interchangeable lenses but you don't want to give up your compact size camera - these cameras offer the best of both worlds.

Sony Alpha A5100
Sony Alpha A5100
from $348
Autofocus Phase detection autofocus Help
fast and accurate
Overall image quality Great image quality Help
80.0
Size Really small Help
Compact (110×63×36 mm)

Learn more about the Sony Alpha A5100

Sony Alpha A5000
Sony Alpha A5000
from $289
Size Really small Help
Compact (110×63×36 mm)
Movie continuous focus Movie continuous focus Help
Makes it easy to get in-focus movies
Supports 24p 24p movies Help
For that film look

Learn more about the Sony Alpha A5000

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM1
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM1
from $396
3D Takes 3D photos Help
View photos in 3D on 3D televisions
Size Really small Help
Compact (99×55×30 mm)
Touch screen Touch screen Help
Less buttons

Learn more about the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM1

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM5
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM5
from $548
Size Really small Help
Compact (99×60×36 mm)
Touch screen Touch screen Help
Less buttons
Supports 24p 24p movies Help
For that film look

Learn more about the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM5

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Least Expensive Interchangeable Lens Cameras

The following are some of the cheapest interchangeable lens cameras on the market.

Samsung NX Mini
Samsung NX Mini
from $275
Size Really small Help
Compact (110×62×23 mm)
Battery life Great battery life Help
650 shots
External mic jack External mic jack Help
Record higher quality audio with a microphone

Learn more about the Samsung NX Mini

Fujifilm X-A1
Fujifilm X-A1
from $279
Image stabilization Image stabilization Help
Lens
Startup delay Almost no delay when powering up Help
500 ms startup delay
Movie continuous focus Movie continuous focus Help
Makes it easy to get in-focus movies

Learn more about the Fujifilm X-A1

Sony Alpha A5000
Sony Alpha A5000
from $289
Size Really small Help
Compact (110×63×36 mm)
Movie continuous focus Movie continuous focus Help
Makes it easy to get in-focus movies
Supports 24p 24p movies Help
For that film look

Learn more about the Sony Alpha A5000

Samsung NX3000
Samsung NX3000
from $292
Screen flips out Flip-out screen Help
Great for movies
Weight Light-weight Help
230 g
External flash External flash Help
Better lighting

Learn more about the Samsung NX3000

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Professional DSLRs

The following are some of the best professional digital SLR cameras on the market.

Nikon D750
Nikon D750
from $1,997
Low light performance Low noise at high ISO Help
2,956 ISO
Overall image quality Great image quality Help
93.0
Screen resolution High resolution screen Help
1,229k dots

Learn more about the Nikon D750

Nikon D810
Nikon D810
from $2,997
Low light performance Low noise at high ISO Help
2,853 ISO
Overall image quality Great image quality Help
97.0
Color depth Great color depth Help
25.7 bits

Learn more about the Nikon D810

Nikon D610
Nikon D610
from $1,200
Low light performance Low noise at high ISO Help
2,980 ISO
Overall image quality Great image quality Help
94.0
Color depth Great color depth Help
25.1 bits

Learn more about the Nikon D610

Nikon D4s
Nikon D4s
from $5,997
Low light performance Low noise at high ISO Help
3,074 ISO
Battery life Great battery life Help
3020 shots
Overall image quality Great image quality Help
89.0

Learn more about the Nikon D4s

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Discussion

Showing 2 comments

Avatar for Snapsort Snapsort (0:35 PM, April 20, 2011)
what tends to make a camera pro is: being weather proofed, having a shutter rated to many actuations, having advanced focus systems, having many features accessible as buttons on the body, the body being made of metal rather than plastic etc. e.g. pro cameras have advanced features and durability.
 
Allen Valino (4:58 AM, April 20, 2011)
Just want to know where is Nikon D90 considered as entry level? I'm new to photography and I am very interested on learning more about it. Thanks.