The best Camera for Food Photography

The list of features goes on and it’s like what do we actually need for Food Photography. Hey guys we’re Fliqaindia welcome back to that stage where we talk all about food photography to assist you to build the creative career you want. Today we are getting to be talking all about cameras and which camera can suit you best for Food Photography. Now we’re not going to be telling you which brand or model to buy because there really is no such thing as the best camera and things change so fast these days that it is impossible to keep up. So instead what we’re going to be doing is talking you through the list of features to look out for in a camera that is really getting to assist you specifically with Food Photography. Bear in mind when it involves to any kind of Photography that your lenses are going to have a far bigger impact on the look of your final photo than any camera body will so make sure you check out our blog on how to choose your lenses for Food Photography and let’s start ——–  

Full frame or Crop sensor:

Full-frame VS Crop sensor this is a question, we get all the time and the truth is it doesn’t really matter that much. If you’re a Pro-Photographer then you’re going to want to be shooting on a full-frame but if you’re new to photography or a beginner or you just want to run a free blog then a Crop sensor is not going to hold you back. What’s really important if you go with a Crop sensor camera is understanding the impact that this will have on your lenses. Going for a Crop sensor camera is a great way to save a bit of budget in the beginning but if you know you’re going to upgrade later and your lenses won’t be transferable to your new camera. So it’s worth thinking about whether you would like to start with a full-frame and keep your lenses or start with a crop frame and a basic lens and upgrade everything later.


Let’s talk about megapixels, now it’s no secret that camera companies love to tell you about how many megapixels their camera has in order to try and make you buy it. So when we see upward for cameras with 24 megapixels,40 megapixels,50 megapixels you think wow we should definitely have 50 megapixels. So let’s read if you really do so a megapixel equals 1 million pixels and how many megapixels you would like in your camera really depends on what you would like to do with your final images. For displaying photos on the web which let’s face it is probably what most of us want to do most of the time and you just need to make sure that your pixel resolution is big enough to accommodate for where you’re displaying your pictures. So for example, if you want to have a full-width photo on your food blog in your blog post then you just need to make sure that your photo is the same width as your content area. So if your content area is 800 pixels then you need to make sure that your final photo is at least 800 pixels wide and this really isn’t a problem for like the vast majority of cameras. So it’s not really web usage that we need to think about too much when it comes to megapixels. But for printing, we need to be able to produce photos that are 300 dpi so (dots per inch at the size)that our final photo will be used. So if we want to print a photo in a cookbook that 8/10 inches then we need to make sure that our file is big enough that we can produce 300 dots per inch at 8/10 inches and that actual size to print at 300 dpi in 8/10 inches works out as 8 megapixels. So you can see that you do not need a 50-megapixel camera in order to be printing great photos you just need to make sure that your camera is capable of producing 300 dpi files at the dimensions that you want to print.

Ability to shoot Raw:

Let’s talk about RAW files, so a raw file is essentially a digital negative. A JPEG is already partially processed inside your camera. So it carries its own limitations. You’re not going to be able to edit a JPEG as efficiently. So you’re not really going to be able to take advantage of the full capabilities of your camera sensor. When you edit a JPEG it’s what we call destructive editing, So every time you make an edit you lose a little bit of information from the file and your file gradually gets to be lower and lower quality but this doesn’t happen with RAW files. So if you know shooting in RAW then make sure you flick that setting over on your camera and start shooting in RAW today.

Focus Peaking:

Focus peaking is a super useful setting for food photography especially when you’re working in manual focus which we do most of the time. Focus peaking allows us to see exactly which part of our image is in focus.

Number of AF Points:

With all that being said autofocus can also be your friend especially if you have enough scope within that setting. So depending on your camera you might have anywhere between nine and fifty-one autofocus points and you can select which ones you want to use in your camera’s menu. So when you’re choosing a camera make sure you check at how many autofocus points it has. If your camera only has nine that then you’re likely to be struggling to nail down your focus on exactly the point you want. So for Food Photography we really recommend getting a camera that has a lot of focus points so that you can just select that focus point and nail it every single time.

ISO range:

Another thing that manufacturers will often boast is that their cameras come with an ISO range of 100 to 125 thousand and that’s amazing but you really don’t need that for food photography at least we certainly hope you don’t.When we’re shooting in our studio 90 percent of the time our camera is nailed down on a tripod so our ISO lives at 100 and that is the best way to get the highest quality noise-free images. But when we’re shooting handheld in the studio we won’t really stray outside of the range of 100 to 400 because we know that on our camera this produces images that are acceptable sharp and don’t have any visible noise. If we’re shooting outside in the evening so say we have a client shoot that requires us to be shooting outside and the light is actually really dim then we might need to push our ISO a little bit more but we will never ever go beyond 2,000. Because if we’re having to push it that far we know that we’re going to get a lot of visible grain in my images and we should much rather just start bringing in some artificial lights to get the images that we need.So in terms of ISO range, it’s great if a camera has a big one but you’re not really going to use it so if you’re paying extra just to have an ISO of 125 thousand then you can probably look for a different camera and save a bit of money.

Continuous Shooting Range:

So let’s talk about continuous shooting modes which is something that we use all the time in Food Photography. So when we want to capture and action say like a hand pouring some syrup over a stack of pancakes. We will flick our camera over into continuous shooting mode and hold down the shutter throughout our action so that at the end we can pick the best photo of the bunch without relying on us taking one photo at the perfect moment and guaranteeing that we’re capturing that action in the best way. But within this setting, each camera will have its own continuous frames per second range and it really depends on your camera as to how many photos it will take per second.Now we know our camera which is the Sony A73 has a frame per second rate of 10 photos. So for every second that we hold down the shutter, we’re going to get 10 photos of my action. Whereas the Canon 5d Mark IV has an FPS rate of 7 frames per second.So for every second, you hold down the shutter on that camera you’re going to get 7 options. So it really depends on what you think but personally we would rather have more photos to choose from than less.

Other Handy functions:

So those are the core functions that look for when choosing a camera for Food Photography.But let’s talk about a few other features that are also really important and the first one is the ability to tether.Tethering is where you connect your camera to your laptop so that you get a larger live preview of your photo on your screen and you can also remotely control your camera. We pretty much exclusively shoot like this now because we don’t have to be bending or stretching or doing anything weird to get to our camera and it really allows us to fine-tune our scenes. Especially when we’re shooting with clients we also have an ice live preview to show them and everyone on set really appreciates that. All the major brands will allow you to tether so Canon, Nikon, Sony they all have free tethering software that you can use. But there are also some paid options should you be interested now. The next nice to have is a flip-out screen now with the caveat that we tether most of the time. So this wasn’t a deal-breaker to us the Sony cameras well at least our Sony a73 to flip out screen is like it goes upwards and out a bit, but it doesn’t actually flip out.So it’s completely useless to me for Food Photography but we’re tethering most of the time so it doesn’t matter whereas our old Canon 80D had a screen that would flip out and rotate which was just a really nice feature to have especially if you’re shooting overhead shots and you’re not tethering.The next thing that is really nice to have is a touch screen.So when you start getting into Photography and you really want to be doing things quickly and changing settings it’s really nice to just be able to go like this and have what you need. So again the Sony it sort of has a half functionality we can touch our screen to choose a focus point which is amazing. But we can’t navigate the menus using a touch screen which is a bit of a shame but it’s not the biggest thing in the world.So a touch screen nice to have but not essential. The next thing that we like is easy to navigate menus so every manufacturer will have their own menu system and over time you’ll get to know it and you’ll be super quick-changing things.So just really get to know the menu system in your camera and the last thing that we really like to look for in a camera is how many buttons are we able to customize. So as you shoot more and more you’re going to find the settings that you want to change over and over and over again and having a few buttons that you can pre-program to change just those settings. It’s going to make your whole process a lot quicker and a lot more comfortable.So make sure that you’ve got at least two but we like to have four so those are our top tips on things to look out for when you’re choosing a camera for Food Photography don’t forget to check out our blog on choosing your lenses specifically for food photography and we will see you next time.

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