For a long time, I used disposable cameras and point and shoots to do my photography. It wasn’t quite a hobby yet, but I used those two tools to do a lot of shooting – particularly on cross-country road trips.
But then something flipped, and I wanted to take photography seriously. I had the drive, and the intent, so I saved up money and bought my first DSLR in 2010. I saw it as an investment in a new hobby.
I get the sense that many people buying entry-level DSLRs are buying the “fancy” camera to take “better” photos.
Don’t buy a fancy camera unless you have the patience and time to do it right.
For most people, a smartphone camera is all they ever need. Point and shoots are great, and affordable.
Buying a DSLR or mirrorless camera is like buying a pet: it needs feeding, care, to be taken for a walk, etc.