Back in the day, way back in the day I originally learned to develop film old school in college. Where students were ushered into an itty bitty pitch black room armed with a camera and metal spools where we learned how to remove the film from the camera and thread the film on the spool - in the dark! And then learned the process of developing film and then learned how to manipulate the "picture" in the developing process with the developing chemicals, time of exposure etc etc. Lots of etc's for novices to learn! Fast forward a few decades through many a camera and I have found myself back to wanting to up my photography game and return to a 35 mm camera albeit digital.
Where To Buy Photo Equipment?
This led me to the vast array of products offered at online retailers for camera and photography equipment. I reintroducing myself to a 35 mm camera by purchasing a used Canon Rebel 2 any today the current Rebel is 8 so you can see I went back quite a few model years. I did this intentionally as I wanted to ensure this was an avenue I wanted to pursue (and knowing, suspecting that it would be, much more investment would be forthcoming).
I purchased the Canon Rebel 2ti used from B & H Photo online. The camera arrived quickly. The packaging was excellent and the camera looked brand new. The only negative though very typical of buying any type of used equipment is the lack of a hard copy manual, but that is easily accessible online.
Since the original purchase I wanted a few accessories and a different lens and back online I went to shop. I would love to support my local camera shop; in my area there is only one bricks and mortar camera store left, but unfortunately though understandably they did not stock the older equipment.
I have purchased equipment from B & H Photo, Adorana, Amazon and eBay and have had positive experiences with all. When seeking a specific pieces of equipment I will surf each of the stores and cost and compare prices, shipping charges. With older accessories that may be model specific the item may very limited in supply so that limits comparison shopping.
Review of Buying Camera, Photography Equipment Online
I have found B & H Photo and Adorana are quick if not quicker when using Amazon Prime. The items were securely packaged by all 4 sellers/companies which is very important with delicate and breakable equipment. The packaging on Amazon I found really varied in quality and quickness to ship even with Prime; on the flip side items purchased are also shipping quicker than promised on Prime.
It is critical to vet the sellers on eBay and Amazon. Returns to third party sellers on Amazon can be a slower process than if sold directly by Amazon. Some third party sellers also require you apply for permission to them to return an item prior to processing on Amazon which is another layer of administration. For eBay sellers research their ratings and the comments by clicking on the number of reviews next to their ebay name.
Top Four(In No Particular Order)
- B&H Photo in New York, family owned
- Adorana in New York, family owned
- Amazon (check if the seller is amazon or a third party)
- eBay (vet the seller closely)
Adorana has a bricks and mortar superstore in New York at 42 W. 18th Street
B&H has a bricks and mortar superstore in New York at 420 9th Avenue.
While online shopping has never been easier it does 'pay' to comparison shop. I've had positive experiences with all the sellers/stores. As mentioned above if a third party is the seller make sure to vet the third party on the site. If seeking discontinued or older equipment eBay or Etsy can be a great resource!
Review This Reviews contributor mgbphoto has an excellent review of her favorite photos of 2021 using three different cameras including an iphone camera. If looking to up your photo editing skills Mary Beth reviews Lightroom and Photoshop which really are a game changer for novice photographers.
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