Pro, Amateur, Enthusiast, Oh My!

The media and buzz around photography uses these terms all the time. I see a lot of phrases like “this camera will likely appeal to the enthusiast market.” I think this is an attempt to categorize cameras and shooters and place both somewhere in a pecking order. Men do this sort of thing a lot.
A camera is a tool. Some tools will make the job easier than others, but in an apples-to-apples comparison, both will get the job done. It really doesn’t matter if a camera is marketed towards professional shooters, enthusiasts, men, women, etc. If it does the job the shooter needs it to do, all is well. Marketing people rarely know very much about shooting professionally.
My wife and I both shoot professionally with Lumix bodies as our primary cameras, which many outlets will tell you are targeted towards enthusiasts and other outlets will tell you that they do not meet professionals needs. We prefer them over DSLR bodies because of the cocktail of technologies they include which make our job easier. A good example is face detection: a technology some may deem amateur oriented, but one which is very valuable for us because is increases our focus hit rate without ever having to adjust focus points and it allows us to move more quickly.

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