Recommendations for all levels on camera equipment you need to have in your collection as you grow
If you’re someone who wants to know the nitty-gritty details about photography and where to start, this week’s Capture Crew Podcast is for you.
On this podcast, Tom and Christora discuss what equipment you should own as a photographer; this is for everyone, no matter what level you are at.
There’s always a lot to figure out when you start a new hobby or profession. With photography, there are even more layers, lenses, bodies, kits, and accessories.
As someone new to this world, walking into the store and asking a salesperson for help may end up with you taking how expensive and hard-to-use equipment. Depending on where you source your gear from, your salesperson may not be fully knowledgeable about the cameras and could end up selling you the wrong camera or gear for your needs.
It’s easy to spend a lot of money really quickly without knowing what you need.
So we want to make it easier to start your photography journey!
Here’s what camera equipment you need when you’re first starting out:
- Entry-level camera, Canon T Levels, Nikon 5600 Levels.
- A slightly higher step up would be Sony A6400 Levels.
- One Lens, 1.8 in any brand will be great.
That’s it – keep it simple to make sure you even like this!
Start playing with your camera lenses and find out what they do for different focal lengths. Figure out the different perspectives you get from the 24-70 lenses.
You’ll notice a huge drastic difference in how faces look and how features appear. A nifty fifty will be the truest to life when you shoot. A 35 lens will be wider. 51-600 often will make the image look completely different than how it is in real life.
Using these smaller lenses will also help you get used to moving around while you take photographs.
Many photographers who start out with bigger lenses tend to stay in one place, never moving for different angles and perspectives, and over time you’ll notice their photographs aren’t as good as they could be. So don’t get stuck in this rut!
Use this opportunity to develop good habits and get to know your equipment really well.
Then once you begin to make this a more serious hobby or profession you should add a few things.
Here’s what camera equipment to add to your collection as you get more serious about photography:
- Flash (only if it’s top of the line for that level; v1, v860. Anything lower will not give you the light you need).
- Memory cards – have at least 2 backups, but more is better! Bonus reminder: Don’t forget to clear them out before each new shoot. And learn how to properly back them up!
- Extra batteries
As you enter your professional era you can add more camera equipment:
- Minimum of 2 Bodies (most professionals have 3-4)
- Lenses trifecta 35, 50, 85 (Tom and Christora have about 5-6 they use for different situations)
So how do you know which camera or equipment to buy?
Each brand has its own identifying system for their cameras.
- Canon T3 is a great starter
- Anything with an “i” at the end will indicate it can also do video, like the Canon T8i
- EOS 60D, EOS 70D, EOS 80D
- Mark III and Mark IV
- EOS R5 and EOS R6 (R let’s you know it’s a mirrorless camera)
The higher the professional grade in DLSR the shorter the numbers are.
- Sony Alpha a6400
- Sony Alpha a7r (better resolution, higher megapixels)
- Sony a7 IV (What Tom uses)
- Sony a9, a92, etc.
- Sony a74 hybrid, a 7s III (S for it’s sensitivity, geared for video)
Nikon is a little different with the DLSR all starting with the letter D.
- Lower levels all have 4 numbers in them: 3000, 5000, 7000
- The higher you got the better they are in lowlight and in megapixels
- 3 numbers are full frame cameras: d610, d750, d810
- Z series is the mirrorless cameras
Lastly, if you’re wanting to experiment with a new camera or lens, consider checking out a local camera shop to see if they will rent the equipment to you for a few weeks. It’ll let you try it before you buy it so you don’t spend tons of money on something you don’t actually love.
Another option is borrowlenses.com.
Don’t have shiny object syndrome when you see new accessories. It’s easy to believe you’ll use a new lens or accessory often and then find out you never do.
It’s okay to take it slow when starting out and buying the things you need. As long as you have one body and one lens, you can get started!
Listen to the podcast to hear more about these and other options before you run out to buy a new camera. We hope that you will find this information helpful before you make your next purchase!
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