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10 Must Have Accessories For Your DSLR

This is a list of the top 10 items on my digital photography wish list (I have a Canon 450D) and possibly should be on your list too.

Every photographer has a wish list, and the items on the list tend to range from the affordable and practical, to the absolute dream.

I’m a gadget fiend so I love researching and adding to my list (actually writing this post is making me drool). So lets get straight into it, here are the top 10 accessories for your DSLR:

1. Remote Shutter Release Cable

If you are wanting to shoot remotely then there are two solutions. Either a remote shutter release cable for shooting long exposures from behind the camera eg. night photography. Or an infared remote controller for shooting in front of the camera eg. self portraits. I am going for the remote shutter release cable.

2. Sturdy Tripod with a Ballhead

I have a Hama Star 61 that I was given (not going to argue about that!). But on my wishlist I would like a really good sturdy tripod, like a Gitzo tripod or Manfrotto tripod maybe and a Ballhead to give better movement.

3. Canon Speedlite 430EXII

My Canon 450D Camera has an integral pop up flash that will do for now. But I would like to experiment and learn how to use a flash unit properly, I’ve never used one before. That will definitely take my photography to the next level, after all they say lighting is key…

4. Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II Lens

The Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II lens and lens hood is the first prime lens that I want to get, and is definitely the cheapest Canon lens that you can buy. It’s great value for money, and a prime lens that everybody should take a closer look at. Also known as a ‘nifty fifty’.

5. Canon EF 28-105mm f/3.5-4.5 II USM Lens

I’d like to upgrade my kit lens an 18-55mm EF-S IS F/3.5 – 5.6 lens, for a more substantial everyday zoom lens. The Canon EF 28-105mm f/3.5-4.5 II USM lens would give me just that and would be a good upgrade from the kit lens. It’s slightly faster with USM and has a nice range, basically a good all round everyday lens.

6. Light Tent/Kit

It’s one thing, and essential to learn how to use natural light effectively when taking photographs, and another to learn the same for artificial lighting. Once I learn how to use a flash properly I can see myself wanting to experiment more with artificial lighting. This is where it can start to get expensive so buying a Light Tent would be a good place to start.

7. Aperture 2 software

I use Photoshop Elements at the moment for post processing and Canon Image Browser to organise my photo library. Which is fine but I really like the look of Aperture, it gives the ability to organise your photos extremely well and also has some powerful editing tools. And reasonably priced as far as photo editing/organising software goes.

8. Macbook Pro

Ok I’m thinking big! But I’d really love one…My poor old iMac 400 is ageing. And although it has done me proud I would really like to retire it soon and bring in some new big guns in the shape of an  Apple MacBook Pro. This would make a huge difference to my photography and workflow. And is a dream that could really do with coming true…

9. Canon Powershot G10

For when one is just not enough…No wishlist would be complete without having another camera on it. If I was going to buy a ‘point and shoot’ camera for those times when a DSLR is a bit bulky, then the Canon Powershot G10 would be it. It has an impressive list of features, including full manual controls and the ability to shoot in RAW to name just two. And a really nice retro design.

10. Canon EOS 5D Mark II

Eventually… Oh I’m dreaming now… The Canon EOS 5D mkII a full frame 21MP DSLR with a High-res 3.0” VGA LCD with Live View and ISO range expandable to 25600. And if that’s not enough it has Full HD (1080, 30fps) movie recording . By the time I could afford this I would have all the lenses I need, so I could just buy the body – what a bargain!!!

I could go on and on (but I wont). And I’m sure your list will change and evolve as you gain more experience in digital photography.

But what’s on the top of your list? What would you like to get your hands on? Let me know by leaving a comment below…

Mandy

P.S. Yes, there are Amazon affiliate links in this article, so you can easily add any of them to your Amazon wish list!

18 comments… add one

  • Nice post.
    I like Photography, I don’t do it though, but it is interesting reading about it.

    Adam.

  • Mandy

    Thanks Adam,

    Glad you liked the post, I love reading about photography too.

  • Great post.
    I Would ad that you should have more than one flash and use them of camera by triggering them with wireless or optical slave triggers to get better light – if you get more flashes you would need light modiefiers such as softboxes, gobos, grids and many other…

    • Mandy

      Thanks Tony, I had a feeling that lighting was going to make an appearance on my list sooner than later – most likely a large appearance on my list!

  • Bit late on this one but, how about back up media, such as hard drives and portable storage.

    • Mandy

      Yeah I completely agree, I was thinking of looking into them a little deeper in another post…

  • 5D MarkII? That’s going a little beyond “accessory,” don’t you think? :P

    • Mandy

      I know sorry, just couldn’t help it! There’s nothing wrong in having a spare body though is there?

  • I’ve been looking into the Canon EF 28-105mm f/3.5-4.5 II USM Lens and think I’ve decided that it’s the lens I need to complete my equipment. I’ve been thinking about getting another lens and think this is the one I need. Just need to start saving!

  • Amber

    i was wondering which lense filters do you recommend??

  • Mandy

    @ Amber – I’m using UV filters on my lenses at the moment, the main reason being protection for the lens in case of accidents! It’s cheaper to replace the filter than it is to replace the lens…

  • I agree with Mandy. You spend so much money on good lenses and you should protect them. Using a cheap UV filter can prevent you from scratching or breaking your lens.

    Good Tip!

    Scott

  • mJ

    Are you buying EF lenses instead of EF-S lenses, so you can switch to the FF 5D? I like your joy of photography, and am becoming addicted myself. I have been considering Pentax for a wider variety of affordable lenses (the old ones still work). Canon is great, but pricey! And the low end stuff is plastic.

  • Mandy

    @Scott – Thanks!

    @mj – Don’t forget Tamron and Sigma for instance make some good affordable lenses. Also I have a Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II Lens that is plastic but still a very good little lens…

  • mel

    Good list. Well, Macbookpro is my favourite ! (if only I had the cash)
    Here is another list of very cheap (under $15) accessories that you may need, some are essential: http://www.dslrpassion.com/blog/59-blog/117-8-must-have-dslr-accessories-under-15.html

  • Valerie Hope

    I want a good reasonably priced lens for bird/wildlife shots, I have a Nikon so cant go for one of those nice Canon lenses. However I cant get my head around the technical jargon as to what will give me the best telephoto without the nice pricetag!

  • Mandy

    Hi Valerie – as you know I shoot Canon and therefore don’t know a whole load about Nikkor Lens but here it goes!

    I’d go for something around the 55-250mm or 70-300mm range. These tend to be in the price range of the normal photographer, and it also means when they’re at 55/70 you can still take landscape shots while also being pretty good at 250/300 for wildlife. So a good all round lens.

    When zoomed right in eg. 250/300 any movement at all will be exaggerated so a lens with VR – vibration reduction is a good bet, although it can push the price up a little.

    If you see something like f4.5-5.6 this is denoting the largest aperture range the lens can give you. eg. f4.5 at 70mm and f5.6 at 300mm.

    But if you’re shooting hand held the most important one is VR! And I’m not sure with Nikon so check the lens will fit your Nikon model?

    Shout if you need more….

  • Shadi

    What an interesting little list Mandy!
    I’m nowhere close leaving the ‘amateur’ mark quite yet, but I would just love to have BOTH the remote controls, so I can work it both from in front of and behind the camera (I have a 550d Canon), but I covet a Manfrotto with a Ballhead so so so so so BADLY!
    Thanks for making the list link back to Amazon, that’s a really useful feature. There were some things on here I wasn’t even aware I should think of before buying the gadget – aka the remote cable; I totally didn’t know that you could get two different types of remote controls based on how you’re going to use them, so thank you very much.
    I also follow your blog and receive your newsletters, and it’s just great, because you’re enthusiastic and passionate and your advice sound, and helpful – AKA I’m a big fan :)

    Regards,

    Shadi

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