Buying My Camera – Part 1

The decision  that I needed to join the camera club with Sue in September 2015 was finally made. She had offered to buy me a camera for this endeavour, and I wanted to be well acquainted with it before September. Besides, we had planned a road trip to Quebec City and to New York State in August and I thought that might be a good time to start my photographic journey.

Nikon Camera
My Nikon D7200, purchased June 2015. This photo was taken with my Iphone.

My first stop was the web to do my research. Something happened when I did this. I found out there is what seemed like a bottomless pit of information about photography. This was very overwhelming. I was used to researching something and getting all the answers I required until satisfied, then moving on to the next topic in question. Can you say Ahhh!!!!

There weren’t just decisions about cameras, but what lenses and what gear for those choices. Then of course you needed to know what type of photography you wanted to do because those choices drive the selection of lenses and equipment. Landscape, wildlife, starlight, street … the list went on. Then of course you need to know what program your going to use for post-processing to make those photos look gorgeous. And you mustn’t overlook tilt shift and fisheye lenses too, which lead to a whole different area of creativity. Then of course is the decades long debate, Canon or Nikon?  I must say, I was on information overload and I had barely began that drive on the information super-highway (yes I know, a very old term for the internet.)

The one easy choice for me, right from the beginning was the type of camera I wanted. It had to be a Nikon. I had once used a Canon Sure Shot point-and-shoot film camera and was very happy with it for many years. But, back then, Canon was not a real contender for SLR, at least not in my mind. Back then there were a few more competitors in this market, but the big names were Nikon, Pentax, Minolta  and Olympus. But I remember seeing people with those Nikon SLRs over their shoulders and I immediately knew they were professional photographers. Or at least they looked professional in my eye.

So, besides researching the net, I asked anyone and everyone whom I saw for an opinion of what camera they thought I should go with. I remained open to Canon suggestions when I received them. I would come home and research reviews, consumer polls and what have you to determine what would be my best choice. When asked what type of photography I wanted to do, I quickly answered landscape. I loved the way a good landscape photo moved me and stirred something inside of me. I wanted so desperately to be able to capture something so moving myself.

So I started with thinking I’d buy the Nikon D3300, a nice entry level, reasonably priced starting place. Especially since I didn’t really know if I’d even like photography! But before I went and purchased it, someone recommended the Nikon D5000. I must say that for the extra bit of money, it seemed well worth it for all the more that it offered. And of course, there were some amazing deals on these too, since they were a couple years lagging. All in all, I was probably looking at around $1000.00 to outfit myself, camera and gear. That’s usually what Sue pays for her cameras and when I told her, she didn’t bat an eye. I mean, she was buying it for me.

But before I went and purchased it, you know the sensible four door reliable and affordable family sedan, that damn show off sped by me screeching their tires with the roof down in their brand new red convertible.  It was a Nikon D7100 and it had all the bells and whistles I could ever want. But with all that technology, the price went up. How would I ever convince Sue to pay that much for my camera when she never spends that much on her own? I know, add some of my own money in!

But before I purchased that, the sensible voice from within spoke to me again. “Buy the newest model, in case you don’t like photography. You will be able to sell it easily within the year and make back a lot of money.” I swear it was the voice of God that I heard. Yeah, Sue didn’t buy it either. But there it was, the top of the hobbyist camera, with a brand spanking new processor to boot, the Nikon D7200! ($1600.00) I would surely get a good buck for it within the year if I resell it. Alternatively, I could get many, many years of use from it before it becomes obsolete if I keep it.  And all I needed was about $2500.00 all in for everything that was required. You know, the extra batteries, large SD cards, wipes, lens protectors and on and on ad infinitum. Well, you guessed it. Sue didn’t say really anything, but she turned white when I told her. In the end, I kicked in $1000.00 of my own money. Even so , she couldn’t resist mentioning often how she’s never paid that much for a camera for herself. I’d smile indulgently and remind her that when I decide photography is still very boring, we’d get a lot of money back having purchased the newest model. That was in June 2015.

I initially had entitled this My Camera and Gear. However, I found that not only was this post ending up to be too long, I decided to break it down into three parts. I end this post here, but you should know, I haven’t left the Henry’s store yet, as there’s more to tell….

 

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