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Best camera for street photography - DSLR vs CSC vs Compact

Christmas shootout
Which camera is best for street situations like a Christmas market?

Festive markets have sprung up around the country in many cities, and with most boasting beautiful food, wonderful home-made gifts and more colours than you can shake a stick at, these make ideal photography projects.

Choosing which camera to take with you can be tricky, however. On the one hand, lugging around a DSLR and setting up the perfect shot may not be exactly practical when there are hoards of people all crowding round desperate to get to the mulled wine stall, while smaller cameras generally have their limitations in terms of creativity and image quality.

So, we've pitted a DSLR against a compact system camera and a compact camera, to see which camera is the best option for shooting scenarios such as this.

It may seem that the DSLR will trounce the others in terms of image quality but, in terms of overall practicality, ease of use and speed, you might be surprised by how well the other cameras can perform.

We've used a budget DSLR, a mid-range compact system camera and a mid-range compact camera, but generally, the pros and cons of each will apply to whichever price bracket a particular type of camera falls into.

Let's start with how the DSLR performed

Amy has been writing about cameras, photography and associated tech since 2009. Amy was once part of the photography testing team for Future Publishing working across TechRadar, Digital Camera, PhotoPlus, N Photo and Photography Week. For her photography, she has won awards and has been exhibited. She often partakes in unusual projects - including one intense year where she used a different camera every single day. Amy is currently the Features Editor at Amateur Photographer magazine, and in her increasingly little spare time works across a number of high-profile publications including Wired, Stuff, Digital Camera World, Expert Reviews, and just a little off-tangent, PetsRadar.