The best digital SLRs for beginners

We've rounded up some beginner-friendly SLR cameras from Canon, Nikon, Olympus, Pentax and Sony

A digital SLR camera is a must-have for anyone serious photography. You can get much better picture quality out of a digital SLR than a compact camera, along with the ability to manually control every facet of the exposure. The removable lens system means you can swap and change lenses as you please; you could put on a big zoom lens for when you're out and about, or you can put on a versatile mid-range lens for when you are taking shots around the house. In this round-up we've selected what we think are the best digital SLRs for beginners from Canon, Nikon, Olympus, Pentax and Sony, taking in to consideration ease of use, price and picture quality.

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Sony DSLR-A390 (DSLRA390Y)

Sony's DLSR-A390 is capable of capturing vibrant and clear images, but its body could use some work. For starters, we'd like a dedicated button for the flash and for zooming in on photos in playback mode, and it's awkward to change the aperture in manual mode. The camera also lacks video mode. If you don't care about video and just want a good quality D-SLR, then the DSLR-A390 is worth considering, but it will take time to get used to it.

  • Review Date:
  • Reviewer:
  • Manufacturer:
  • 5th Aug., 2010
  • Elias Plastiras
  • Sony
  • Rating:
  • Price:
  • Pros:
  • Good clarity, vibrant images, menu system provides helpful hints, uses SD in addition to Memory Stick Pro Duo, ships with good quality 55-200mm lens, good Live View implementation
  • Cons:
  • Feels uncomfortable, needs more and better placed buttons, no video mode
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