What Is The “Best” Camera?

Is This The Best Camera?

I have often been asked a variation of this question by friends, relatives, and even some mere acquaintances, “I intend to buy a camera. So what camera should I buy?”. Most of these people are regular people out there who don’t shoot for a living. Probably don’t even shoot for a hobby either. So I will often reply with another question, “What camera do you want?”. And more often than not, the standard answer would be, “The best camera!”

The Best Camera

Well, what do I do?… I’d slap the palm of my hand on my forehead, “Duh!…” I was really curious as to why would people of all walks of life come to me and ask me this question. It’s not as if I’m a camera salesman, and can recommend whatever cameras that I have in stock in my retail shop to them. So when I squint my eyes, tilt my head down and slightly to the side, looking at them dubiously through the slits of my eyes, and asked for clarification as to why are they asking me instead of going window shopping for a camera, their standard answer would be, “… because you’re a professional photographer!”

Slap my palm to my forehead once again, “Double Duh!…”

So how do I get it through their thick skulls that professional photographers USE cameras, not SELL them. Heck, these people probably know more of what’s out there in the market than I do.

And bear in mind that some of them out there are really persistent, and will insist that you have used a whole range of the “best” equipment that the market has to offer, thus should be in the best position to offer them a learned recommendation.

The Best Camera That Money Can Buy

Anyway, I have now decided that I shall furbish them with answers that are completely honest, and to the best of my knowledge. The next time somebody asks me the same question, I will tell them that they have a choice between Linhof Supertechnika V, Sinar S2, Graflex Speed Graphic, and I’ll probably throw in Hasselblad 505, Mamiya 67 and Rolliflex TLR into the mix as well.

I can already imagine their heads nodding up and down, as if acknowledging the camera models that I had just rattled off my tongue. Good luck shopping around for those cameras in today’s market…

The Best Camera?… Seriously?…

Another popular question for the resident professional photographer is this, “So how do I set the [insert camera function here] in my camera?”

“Did you buy the camera?”


“Did the camera come with a manual?”


“Did you read the manual?”


Slap the palm of my hand to my forehead, “Duh!”

“But you’re a professional photographer. You’re supposed to know how to set the camera.”

Slap my palm on my forehead once again, “Double Duh!”

“You call yourself a professional photographer, but you’re telling me that you don’t know how to set the [insert camera function here] in my camera?”

Secret Struggles Of A Professional Photographer

“Listen here, you twerp!… I’m a professional in the ART OF PHOTOGRAPHY… I’m not a professional camera manufacturing engineer, nor am I a professional camera salesman. And for the last time, NO, I do not know how to set the [insert camera function here], or any other function in any camera other than my own”

Life as a professional photographer is tough… real tough…

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