If you’re a car fan, a bike fan, or into any other hobby, then it’s quite likely that upgrading is a fairly common thing to do… you might start with something simple on your car, like upgrading the air filter, or look for some better tyres for your car, or even your bike. In fact there are probably hundreds of different ways you can upgrade your car.

But, can I upgrade my camera, and if I can how do I upgrade my camera?

Well, I’m sorry to disappoint you, but unfortunately you can’t simply upgrade your camera in the usual sense as such, for example, you can’t replace your old 16MP sensor with a higher resolution sensor, and you can’t upgrade the screen, or improve that. And you can’t swap out your APS-C sensor for a full-frame sensor, it simply isn’t possible without changing your camera body for a completely different camera (at great expense).

However, there are areas some areas where you can improve the performance of your camera…

Upgrade the firmware

After a digital camera has been released to the market, there will often be firmware updates that fix bugs, improve performance, and sometimes add all new features. For example, Panasonic added Animal Detection Auto-focus to the Panasonic Lumix G9, and there have been cases where a firmware update has significantly improved a camera, as is the case with Canon’s V2 firmware update for the Canon EOS 7D.

The Olympus E-M1X got a firmware update that added bird recognition auto-focus (AF).

The Olympus E-M1X got a firmware update that added bird recognition auto-focus (AF).

Upgrade the lens

If you’ve got a mirrorless camera or DSLR, then you can upgrade the lens on the camera. If you want to take better shots in low-light, then you can get a lens that gives better low-light performance, thanks to a larger and brighter aperture, that will let more light into your sensor. This will improve the performance of your camera in low light conditions.

Fujifilm XF 56mm F1.2 R WR lens

The Fujifilm XF 56mm F1.2 R WR lens has a bright F1.2 aperture, making it great for low-light

Of, if you want to take sharper photos, but have a lens that just doesn’t perform very well, then upgrading the lens to a sharper, more premium lens, could improve the sharpness and quality of your images. Have a look at our buyers guides to find the best lenses for you.

How can I speed up my camera?

You could also upgrade the performance of your cameras speed, by looking at the speed of the memory card in your camera. This will be of particular importance if you’ve ever been slowed down when shooting continuously, or when you’ve been recording video, and found that the camera will simply stop recording for no reason.

Lexar Professional 2000x SDHC:SDXC UHS-II Memory Card GOLD Series in the new 256GB capacity

Lexar Professional 2000x SDHC:SDXC UHS-II Memory Card GOLD Series in the new 256GB capacity – see our complete guide to memory cards.

And there are other areas where you could look to improve the quality of your output. Want to improve your video audio? Have a look at some different microphone options.

How can I upgrade my camera for free?

If you don’t want to spend any money on upgrading your camera equipment, and have already checked for a new firmware, then there is of course, one thing you can improve, and that is your own photography skills.

And this is the tricky thing, because this can take some real effort, and time, learning, experimenting, and trying new things.

If you’re regularly stumped by blurry images, or images that lack that something special, then perhaps the thing that needs an upgrade is you, and your own camera skills? But that’s where the internet can help, simply Google any problem you’re having, and you’ll be able to start finding some answers.

In fact, have a look at our guides to improving your photography, and you’re bound to find something that can help you upgrade. And best of all, it’s free!

Featured image: Canon EOS R10 with RF lenses, photo: Andy Westlake.

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