Hey, friends! With Amazon Prime day upon us as well as the start of my new Photography Education Facebook Group I have dove into the world of camera equipment to check out what’s the latest and greatest on the market to aid in your search for the perfect next camera purchase. As I have been weighing out features and price points, a few very important things have come to mind that I want to discuss. This blog post is a starting point as I will break down some specifics within my education group on facebook later this week.
Note that with my recommendations, I favor Nikon Systems. I have found that comparing price points for entry and mid-level systems that Nikon offers better quality equipment. For instance, when comparing the T7 to the Nikon 3500, for $30 more you get a camera that has more focus points and a faster frame per second rate. It also has a larger sensor and longer battery life. For the purpose of my education group it is also beneficial that given a blank slate, I can be of more use with Nikon Systems since that is what I know best. I am happy to research any Canon-specific cameras that you have, though!
You will see that I included both new and used options. For me personally, even with my professional equipment I enjoy buying gently used or refurbished equipment. It is a great way for you to acquire more and better equipment for less money.
Let’s talk about bundles. Soooo many websites will try to offer deals on a camera and a lot of accessories to go with it. DON’T DO IT! I would 100% buy a camera body and then quality lenses and accessories that you need separately. Often times the bundled items aren’t good quality and are not really a good deal for what they are offering. Most the time the lenses offered in the bundles are low quality and will be a hindrance to your ability to do more with the equipment.
The ideal camera for you greatly depends on a few factors. I’d love for you to sift through your thoughts on the differences so that I may best be of help to you. I created a quiz to help you decide what is the best option for you in my opinion. Simply tally up the points per which option is more true to you for the three questions below.
1) What is your goal?
- -I will be happy as a hobby photographer for the next few years (1)
- -I want a few years to learn my craft and then I will entertain the idea of possibly making money from photography (2)
- -I would like to work towards making money with my photography (3)
2) What do you think you will do with the photos that you take?
- -I would love to have keepsake images of loved ones and travel photos. I will mostly print 11×14 and smaller and share on social media. (1)
- -I would like to take great photos of loved ones and occasionally print larger than 16×20 as well as share images on social media (2)
- -I would like the capability of creating high end artwork larger than 16×20 and possibly create artwork for purchase (3)
3) How much will you want to invest in equipment over two years?
- -$500-$1000 (1)
- -$1000-$2000 (2)
- -$2000+ (3)
If your total is a 3-4, I’d say you’re in group A. 5-7, group B. 8-9 group C.
- used: Refurbished/Used Nikon D700 ($500) + 50mm 1.8G ($215) *(CF instead of SD cards) *this is an excellent option if you are considering upgrading to a full frame system and taking your photography further in the future
- new: Nikon 5600 ($600) Nikkor DX 35mm 1.8G lens ($200)
- new: Canon t7i ($650) + EF-S 50mm 1.8 STM ($125)
- new: Nikon 7200 ($715) + Nikkor DX 35mm 1.8G lens ($200) *if you think you may want to shoot for profit (2 card slots)
- used: Nikon D750 (can get one refurbished or used for a little over $1000)
Note that when budgeting for equipment, be sure to set aside a little for needed or helpful camera accessories such as….
- -memory card SD or CF (I only use SanDisk Extreme Pro– they are faster and have less incidence of corrupted files)
- –camera strap
- –flash for indoor or nighttime photography
- -memory card adaptor if your computer does not have a card slot
- –memory card carrying case to keep your cards protected
- -camera bag for safe transport and storage
- Adobe Creative Cloud Membership for editing your photos ($9/month)
- External hard drive for backing up photos/more storage
I am happy to review any links to products that you have found! Because I LOVE Amazon, I trust them and because I have partnered with them in their affiliate program, the links above are directed to Amazon. In regards to used equipment I also trust Adorama and KEH.