Do you need a DSLR w/ ability to use a full system of lenses, and to monitor through the lens, or can you get by with a nice point-and-shoot w/ a good-range zoom lens?
For decades, I used Nikons, even up through the early digital days. I was able to use many of my lenses with the later digital cams, but as they were DX frame, the effective focal length doubled.
However, I have fallen in love with the little Canon G-10 (think it's up to G-12 now?). It obviously does not allow me to change lenses, but has decent wide-angle (I use that, more than tele), is light, sharp, and offers a lot of control. As my DSLR bag w/ lenses will not fit into either the overhead storage, or under-seat storage, on a lot of the commercial jets flown out of Phoenix, it stays home much more often now - the little G-10 goes into my briefcase.
It just depends on the work that you want to do, and also the adaptability, that you require.
Let us know a bit more about your work, and others can make recommendations.
I am starting a magazine in music production. I need to take picture of
music equipment, and keyboards etc...the works.
This includes pictures of artists that either pose to just talk to me.
I am the editor, writer and photographer.
Get the new nikon d800 with a good lens/flash and your all set.
The Nikon D800 is pretty expensive. I am on budget.
Could I get anything decent for $300 max? lol
Is this an online magazine or a real ink on paper, read while you're in the bathroom magazine? If your camera budget is only three hundred dollars, I'd suggest you're seriously undercapitalized for any type of endeavor, and you're going to be stretched far too thin trying to do everything yourself. Y'know - jack of all trades, master of none... You should be concentrating on getting advertising and then hiring a good photographer who already has the right equipment and skill to make your magazine shine. Whatever you decide to do, you're going to need at least an entry level dslr with at least a wide zoom and an tele zoom, just for starters. Probably $1500 or so to start.
Thank you for the advice.
p_d_f, are you on linkedin?
If I go the route to get a photographer, should I a.) find a student
photographer or b.) an experienced one.
And what is the average wage or salary of such a photographer today in year
You still did not answer if you are going online or print. It makes a lot of difference for the type of camera you need. Online you can get away with a lower quality camera due to the lower resolution needed for on screen.
Not on LinkedIn and deleted my FB account.
There are basically three ways magazines get their images. One is to have a full time staff photographer to go out and shoot everything needed. That could run you anywhere from $30K on up depending on circumstances. Most magazines hire freelance photogs on an as needed, per assignment basis and the pay per job depends on things like the photographer's experience and talent, the complexity of the job, and how widely seen the magazine is. The third way is to search out stock images that fit your needs.
At first it will be physical. Then eventually digital.
With stock images, what about copyright??
You need to read the licensing agreement with each stock agency. I see stock image credits all the time in both paper magazines and digital magazines and news outlets.
You pose a good set of questions, but they do not have easy answers.
With the student vs pro, you spend more time getting good work from the student, but one, who is competent, and willing to work to get things done, can be just fine. However, if you are paying by the hour, i.e. a day-rate, expenses can mount, and in a hurry. With a professional, competent in the type of work required, the time will be less, and even factoring in the higher day-rate, can be the bargain.
Now, day-rates vary by type of work, and also location. In Denver and Phoenix, before I retired, my day-rate started at US$ 1800, plus all expenses. However, rather than quoting "day-rates," I always liked to get all info for the project, outline what was to be delivered, and the time frame, then issue a "not-to-exceed" price for the project/assignment.If it took me longer, say due to more R&D, than I thought, that was MY problem, and not my client's. As I did advertising photography for 38 years, I was pretty good at quoting just what it would take to get my client exactly what they needed, and they had a fixed price, before they signed the contract. Unless something changed on their end, they could budget exactly, and were almost always happy.
Many times I would be asked to quote on "saving a project," that had initially gone to a less experienced shooter. Unfortunately, some of the clients had already blown their budget, when going with someone, who had a lower day-rate. Still, when faced with a budget, with which I could not work, I never hesitated to recommend one of my assistants, who usually had lower overhead, than I did. Heck, I would often lend equipment to do some of those jobs, to help both the assistant and the client. I found that better, than cutting my rate, as that almost always came back to bite me.
Now, my philosophy was that there only three reasons to take an assignment:
- It would allow me great material to use in my portfolio
- It would be so much fun, or make me feel so good, that I just had to do the work, regardless of the profit
- It would pay me enough, that I could afford to do # 2
Number 1 also went a long way to allowing me to do # 2.
Some assignments incorporated all three, and those were blessings, but I would usually settle for two out of three..
If you find the right student, or beginning pro, and you can convince them that they will benefit from at least # 1, and maybe # 2 also, they might be a good find, especially if they are creative, work hard and have talent. Just be patient, and also very clear. Treat them with respect, and remember, creative endeavors are usually best, when they are a two-way street.
Good luck, and I wish that there was an easy answer.
One thing you should be careful of when shopping for a versatile camera for a low price
is scams. You can lose your money and time.
If you haven't heard of the Brooklyn type vendors, you haven't searched the photography blogs enough.
My advice would be to look for a relatively reputable manufacturer like Pentax, FujiFilm, Olimpus and see what they have in your budget.
Famous camera brands like Canon, Nikon, Sony charge a premium for their name.
I personally like Sony, but your needs may be better served by Fuji.
This site may help:
Late to the "party," but DPReview is a good source of info.
Now, I am a big fan of brick and mortar stores, and local ones, at that. When I need X, I want to be able to drive to a store near me, and buy it. Though I have bought a lot of equipment from stores, like Calumet Photographic and BH Photo, when possible, I shop locally.
Trust me, the $ you might save over local, can be eaten completely up, when you need it tomorrow, just by Fed-X Priority Overnight shipping. If I do not buy much of my stuff locally, then they will be out of business, and I will be forced to pay a major premium on shipping, though the unit price might have been lower.
I have been a "Nikon guy" for many decades, and all of my large-format lenses are Nikkors, it is not necessarily and end-all - be-all brand. Many of my friends have shot Canon, for nearly so long (they are younger, than I am), and now, my favorite camera is a Canon G-10, that I inherited from my wife. I got it to replace a dead Canon p-n-s digital, that replaced a Nikon 35mm p-n-s. She wanted smaller yet, so I found myself with the Canon. I used the little beast, and it was great! Now, my Nikons often stay home, and especially as United Airlines has downsized the planes out of Phoenix to CRJ-200's, and none of my camera bags will fit in the overhead, or under those tiny seats. That little Canon fits into my briefcase, so it gets to do more traveling, than my Nikons. BTW, she went for a really tiny Panasonic/Lumix, that looks like a swollen credit card. It takes great pic, but lacks almost any control, compared to the larger (though still small) Canon.
You know what I like - without getting into expensive DSLR's - is the Panasonic DMC-FZ150K. It's close to $500, but has everything you need - excluding a great flash (there's a Vivatar that's available for about $150) - to create professional-quality photos. And if you're into shooting raw images and tweaking your own photo's, it's one bridge between point-and-shoots and high-end DSLR's that allow you to shoot in raw format and is supported by Adobe's Camera Raw. Yeah, it's a little more than $300, but you can't go wrong with it. Period. It's available here at Amazon, but you might be able to find it a little cheaper elsewhere.
Just my 2¢...
Read my recommendation of the Panasonic DMC-FZ150K - I really think it would fit your needs. Since lighting is going to be a problem, usually, I'd definitely get the Vivitar flash here. And some sort of "softbox" diffusion system for the flash - such as a the one here.
It's as close to a 'pro' set-up as you're going to get for about $600 total.
Well you can look for used DSLRs like the Nikon D70 or a D40.
The DSLR cameras do give a good quality photos, I would say better than the Lumix although a bit old.
Used one will fall in your budget as well.
So what did you end up getting? Anxious to know...