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How to Buy a Digital Camera - Hidden Costs to Consider: A Digital Camera Buying Guide

written by: •edited by: Rhonda Callow•updated: 5/12/2009

If you are on a budget when purchasing a digital camera, there are hidden costs you should note before going shopping. Part two of our digital camera buying guide alerts you to what you must have and what you can safely trim to buy a camera on a budget.

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    This article is part of a series which discusses how to buy a digital camera. To read the first article in this series, please see Part One: Establishing The Basics: A Digital Camera Buying Guide

    More often than not when you make a purchase, you’re going to have to buy additional items. There isn’t much that comes as a “whole package deal”. If you purchase a bicycle, you’ll need a helmet and lock. Purchase a computer; you’ll probably pay extra for the monitor and printer. Cameras are no different.

    Of course if you want to go all out, there are numerous extras you can buy for your digital camera: special lenses, additional flashes, tripods, reflectors...

    However, these aside, there are some basic necessities that you’ll always need to buy. You should keep the following hidden costs in mind if you’re on a budget.


    Some digital cameras will only take special batteries made by the camera manufacturer, others will take AA’s. Keep in mind if you buy the cheap disposable batteries, your camera will suck them dry faster than a blood-thirsty vampire. Rechargeable batteries will be cheaper in the long run, but have a higher initial cost. I use rechargeable NiMH (nickel metal hydrate) batteries and find this to be the best solution. Don’t forget you’ll have to buy a battery charger if you decide to take this route.

    Camera Case

    You’re going to want to protect your new camera, right? Purchasing a case for your camera should be on the top of your list.

    Memory Cards

    Most cameras will come with a very minimal amount of built-in memory space or if you’re lucky, an external memory card that is good to hold anywhere from 5-20 high resolution shots. Purchasing a good memory card is essential if you don’t want to run out of room.

    If you’re upgrading your camera, remember that a lot of accessories can come along for the ride. If your new camera takes the same type of memory card, you don’t need to purchase a new one. Same goes for the batteries and case.

    Please continue on to the next article in this digital camera buying guide article series:

    Digital Camera Buying Guide Part Three: Additional Aspects To Consider