New camera for 10-year old?

Started Nov 15, 2012 | Discussions thread
wy2lam Veteran Member • Posts: 3,120
Re: E-PL1

tedolf wrote:

wy2lam wrote:

I have an E-PL1, and while it has good IQ and perfectly usable for someone who is interested in photography, I'd advise against it for a 10 year old.

Instead, get a used GF1 - they might be a bit more expensive at around $250, but shutter and aperture settings are quickly accessible.

A learner's camera should handle like a camera instead of like a computer - having to fiddle with direction buttons to get at these settings is a distraction. It might even make the process too frustrating for a kid - at this stage you probably want to keep the interest high instead of letting things get in the way.

Another good learner's camera is a used D70 you can get for $120. It's not m4/3, but the way it can be controlled is infinitely better than an E-PL1.

Klarno wrote:

If you want to go the interchangeable lens route, I'd wholeheartedly recommend the Olympus E-PL1. You can get it from Cameta right now for $140 (they also get refurbished units for $120). Spending a just little more can get you a more contemporary camera like the E-PM1 or E-PL2.

Then you just need a lens on top of that. An additional $100-120 will get you a basic kit lens from the same vendor. Or buy both at once, I see a refurb E-PL2 kit with 14-42 lens for $260. There are a lot of options.

You'll end up with a better picture taking machine than just about any compact on the market, at half the price of the premium models. Then when you feel comfortable you can start looking at other lens options. If it doesn't work out, you can probably resell it for the same price you bought it for.

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With a manual lens, you really don't need to click any buttons at all.


Only operates well in Av mode. For full manual mode, or EC, or ISO, the shutter speed still needs to be controlled through fiddling with buttons like operating a computer.  It would be best if the camera can be operated like a digital K-1000: direct control on aperture and shutter (for a digicam, while offering quick access to ISO and EC controls).

Old, used DSLRs are a cheap option, so is an old GF1 (albeit the lack of a finder makes it impossible to properly brace a camera).  Of course, if you can afford it, a digital body with direct shutter dial is also good, like a X100.

The E-PL1 is good if you want something cheap - as long as your 10 year old does not bump the camera around or drop it, they'll be ready for a non-crippled camera - how about your backup body?  How about your previous digital body?

Sometimes bargains can be found.  My daughter is using a 4MP, fixed focal length Samsung P&S that takes real SD cards and with a flash.  She's 2 years old and the camera cost us $5 brand new.  We're all having fun.

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