If you are looking to pay more than £1000 for your camera you are shopping at the professional end of the market. Cameras in this price bracket offer you ultimate control over your photos with a full range of creativity controls.
Improvements over cheaper cameras include better build quality, faster operation and better focusing control. You are also likely to find improved performance in lowlight situations. Another area where you can find better options is when it comes to shooting movies.
If this is your total budget and you do not already have some good quality lens it may be worthwhile considering dividing your budget between a cheaper camera body and a good quality lens or two. This is because the quality of the lens plays a major part in the quality of the photos you take and you are unlikely to get the most out of an expensive camera body if you couple it with cheap lens options.
Key features include the ability to shoot at speeds of up to 8 frames per second. This is ideal for fast moving subjects. Focusing options include a 19 point cross type AF system. The AF system is customisable to give you fine control over focusing. The ISO range is 100 – 6400. This is expandable up to 12800.
The E-5 is a professional level Digital SLR. Key features include 12 megapixels and an 11 point Auto Focus system. The body of the camera is made out of magnesium alloy and is both splashproof and dustproof. Image stabilisation has been built into the body and the 3 inch LCD screen pulls away from the body so that you can twist it round to a comfortable shooting position. A depth of field preview button is available and you can shoot High Definition movies.
Like its predecessor the EOS 5D Mark II has a full frame sensor. It can shoot at up to 3.9 frames per second when images are stored as Jpegs. The 3 inch LCD screen offers Live View for composing images through the screen. There is also a comprehensive dust prevention system.
The Nikon D800 is a high quality Digital SLR aimed at professional photographers. The D800 is a full frame Digital SLR. It is capable of shooting Full 1080p High Definition movies with stereo sound. It has a 51 point AF and an ISO 100 to 6400 range that can be expanded to 25,600. Burst mode can reel off shots at up to 4 frames per second. There is also a HDR function to increase the dynamic range of high contrast photos.
The D700 comes with some of the features more recently introduced to Digital SLRs such as a Live View mode and a cleaning system that automatically removes dust from the sensor. It has a 3 inch LCD screen and can shoot at a maximum of 8 frames per second with the optional battery pack. A wireless transmitter is available for wireless communication with Ethernets and LANs.
The Canon EOS 5D Mark III is one of the most advanced Digital SLRs. It offers 61 point Auto Focus, the ability to shoot at up to 6 frames per second and has a 3.2 inch LCD screen. Shooting movies is taken care of by a Full High Definition movie mode, stereo sound and the ability to use manual exposure while recording. There is a socket for an external microphone and one for headphones. Canon have equipped the camera with weather sealing. The body is built around a magnesium chassis.
This is a fully featured Digital SLR. It is aimed at top level professionals working in the fields of sports, news and wildlife photography. Key features include 16 megapixels, a 1.3x crop factor, 46 point auto focus, 10 frames per second and the ability to shoot High Definition movies. ISO can be extended between ISO 50 and ISO 102,400. The high specification build quality includes a full magnesium alloy body. It is water and dust resistant through the fitting of 76 rubber seals.
The D3s is clearly a high end Digital SLR. It is able to reel off shots at a rate of 9 frames per second. It has a 51 point auto focus system with 15 cross type sensors. It has a rugged construction based on a magnesium alloy body. Other features include High Definition movies, an ISO range of ISO 200 – 12,800 (expandable to 102400) and a 3 inch LCD screen. The viewfinder offers 100% coverage.
The Nikon D4 is a top of the range Digital SLR. This full frame model has a 51 point AF and can shoot up to 10 frames per second. Full 1080p High Definition movies can be captured with stereo sound. You can even take 2 megapixel stills while shooting video. It has a 3.2 inch LCD screen, dual memory card slots and a built in HDR function. The body is based on a magnesium alloy chassis and there are seals to protect the D4 from moisture and dust. Amongst the optional accessories is a wireless transmitter.
The D3x is aimed at the most demanding professional photographers. It has 51 AF points and can shoot full resolution photos at a top speed of five frames per second. The body is made from a magnesium alloy and is resistant to moisture, dust and shock.
The EOS-1D X is a top of the range Digital SLR aimed at high level professional photographers. It is a full frame model. It is capable of 10.3 frames per second and has a 3.2 inch LCD screen. Photographs can be stored simultaneously as Jpg and RAW. There is a 3.2 inch LCD screen in addition to the viewfinder. ISO ratings go up to 512,000 in standard mode and 204,800 in High ISO mode. You can also shoot Full High Definition movies.
The EOS IDs Mark III sits at the top of the Canon DSLR range. It is aimed at the most demanding professional photographers and offers features such as a shooting speed of 5 frames per second, a full frame sensor and 19 AF cross type points.
The EOS-1D C is a hybrid Digital SLR. It is equally at home shooting both still images and movie clips. It can shoot 4K (4096 x 2160 pixels) movies at a speed of 24 frames per second. Canon claims this gives you cinema quality movies. For still images it can shoot at a top speed of 12 or 14 frames per second. Images can be stored in RAW and there is a set of manual exposure controls. This camera has a 61 point auto focus system and a 3.2 inch LCD screen.