A little side note

In the post I just wrote about investing in a photography business, I talked about the constant want/need to upgrade equipment. As a side note, I’d like to quickly talk about the upgrade process.

Upgrading is usually very expensive so I’d give you one piece of advice; if you aren’t producing beautiful images with your current camera, upgrading isn’t going to help. As I said in the comments of the post below, it’s hard to tell the difference between an image produced by a low-end camera versus a high-end camera if the user knows what they are doing. If you aren’t taking great pictures now, upgrading probably isn’t going to help.

The only thing nicer cameras give you is more flexibility. You can shoot faster and in different situations with a higher-end camera and this allows you to capture more great shots, but not necessarily better ones.



  1. says

    Totally agree… I was taking pretty good shots with my D100, went to a D2x and loved it, but had to sell it. When I went back to my D100, I was a better photographer, but it really had nothing to do with the D2x.

    Now that I have a D300 and I am seriously considering a D300/D700 combo, I am thrilled that I “had” to spend the last year or so shooting with my outdated, low MP D100. Having to be creative with poor glass and an outdated camera once again made me a better photographer.

    Right now I really can’t decide between the D3/D700 but I think I want to invest in the glass more than the body right now, so it looks like the 700 it is.

    My problem over the years has been how to monetize the investment in the equipment. Part of that problem was the subject matter I was shooting (nature), which is such an over saturated market.

    With some new equipment, I am ready to focus on some local sports and “city life” which has a much better potential for sales, especially being in a small college town like I am.

    Great post… equipment is both the biggest pain, and the most fun at the same time.

  2. says

    We started with the D70s because we didn’t really have the work to justify the cost. Now that we have the work, we’ve started to upgrade all the equipment.

    Using lower-level equipment and learning how to make great things with it will always make you better.

    And you’re right, equipment is a huge pain but still a lot of fun.

  3. Kelli says


    Thanks so much for these short posts. For someone wanting to learn more about having a photography business it is nice to read shorter, basic info to get things sparking in the mind. I do have one question though. I would like to purchase my first dSLR within the next 9 months, but am unsure of what to get. I know upgrades will be necessary as skill and use determines, but what is a good starter. I don’t have a budget yet and will most likely tailor it to a specific camera. I just don’t want to get too much camera too soon. I don’t know how much sense that makes, but any input would be greatly appreciated.

  4. says


    I noticed my post on “Taking better pictures” ended up a little longer than I normally like so I’m breaking these up.

    If you are looking for Canon, I’m not too up to date on what they are offering. On the Nikon side, I’d say if you can, shoot for a D200 or D300. The D300 currently runs around $1,700 for the body. It’s a really good camera.

    The D200 is what I currently use. It’s also a great camera and can be found new for about $1,200 – $1,300. Either of those would do a great job and allow you a lot of room for growth.

    You can go with a cheaper D60 or D80, but I think you’ll outgrow them a little quicker and it’s not a huge step from them to a D200 in terms of money.

    Start with cheaper lenses, but when you can, save up for nicer ones. I have a Nikon 17-55 2.8 that I absolutely love. It clocks in at about $1,400. When you can, always buy Nikon lenses. I’ve tried some of the Tamrons and Sigmas because they are often less than half the cost of the Nikon. You’ll notice a huge difference in not just quality but focusing speed.

    Hope this helps.

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