Looking to introduce your child to digital photography for the first time? We’ll go over some things to look for when shopping for your first digital camera for kids. Children as young as three years old can get started with kids digital cameras and you’ll want to pick one that is appropriate for their age. Here we’ll give an overview of shopping for younger kids and we’ll follow-up on advice for shopping for older kids in future posts.
One of the suggestions I’ve read from a couple of different sources online is to look for the latest or most popular model as seen on TV or ads. Their reasoning is kids will be proud of their camera and want to show it off to their friends. I have to say I completely disagree with this advice and would caution you against buying something merely because it’s on TV ads or because it’s the newest model out. Your goal here should be to get your kids interested in taking pictures, not brand names and consumerism in my opinion. This may be a bit controversial so I’d love to hear your comments on this.
Another reason not to go along with this advice is that, particularly when it comes to electronics, you don’t really want to buy the newest thing. Often there just isn’t enough information out there about the quality of the product. Wait until the market has had a chance to test the product and do a little bit of research online before spending your hard earned money on a substandard camera.
My recommendation is to focus on two major areas when shopping for kids digital cameras. These are durability and ease of use. You’ll want a camera that can survive the rough handling by younger kids especially if you plan on having more than one child share the camera. You’ll also want to make sure they can pick up the camera right away and start having fun taking pictures.
These two areas are generally what set kids digital cameras apart from traditional digital cameras but it’s worth taking note what makes these specialized cameras durable and easy to use. Starting with the camera body you might notice kids digital cameras are generally ruggedized (usually a one piece rubber encased body) with no moving parts. This helps the camera survive drops and even spills and makes it easier to grasp with small hands. Ease of use is measured in how quickly the child can get going with the camera. Automatic shooting settings, large buttons, large LCD screen and a simple interface all contribute to the ease of use of the camera.
Of course, there are plenty of other technical features you may want to factor in. These will be the ones that have an effect on the price you end up paying. We’ll go into more detail on these in a following post and would love to hear back on what you look for when shopping for kids digital cameras.
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