Photography vs console video games: The better long term investment?

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Cameranoobie
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Photography vs console video games: The better long term investment?
5 months ago

Which do you think is the better long term investment with the bigger payoff and why?

Reason I ask?  Well because over the past 7-8 years in the past gen of console gaming, I've spent easily 10-15K on console gaming.  Games whether its renting or buying, accesories, online memberships, newer updated console models etc.  Yes, one could look at that money and immediately notice that, that would buy you a helluva lot of high end camera gear.  It also would buy me a nicer car!  If I could go back in time today and have the choice to have all that extra money saved up in the sacraficie of giving up the last gen consoles experience, sadly I would.  Do I regret it?  As many great memories and games Ive had over the past 8 years, most definitely yes.

I was a diehard gamer for about 5 years where I would buy a $60 game once a week, sometimes two games a week.  It may not seem like a lot at first, but over time it adds up trust me.  I will admit, I went through a phase where I was heavily addicted to video games.  Speaking from my experience, it is one of the most rotten most depressing undescribable feelings in the world.  There were many MANY dark weekends and days that I would spend hours on end playing video games.  Thankfully, I was able to get myself out of it, but thinking back, I felt it took a lot longer than it should have taken.  I can gaurentee that I would never let myself get into this state ever again.

Well I am in my mid 30s now and have noticed over the past 3 years that my priorities in life have changed and my interest in console gaming has significantly dropped.  My game time, my interest, motivation, curiousity has slowly been on a decline over the years.  Not saying that Im not into video games anymore, but some times people hit a certain part in their life when they have to evaluate their life and what to invest time into short and long term, what their goals are etc.  The big question is, the long term benefits and pay offs.

For example, over the past two years, Ive much more physically active and spend a lot of time in the gym now.  The biggest reason for this?  Simply put, the long term payoff.  You feel better mentally and physically, and also look better mentally and physically.  I cant say that video games has anything even remotely close to this kind of payoff long term.

There was a point last year where i sat down and thought long and hard over the past 8 years and said .... I didnt realize how much money i spent on gaming over the past 8 years.  And what was the payoff or benefit that I had today?  Nothing.  Absolutely nothing.  It didnt make me a better person, or a person with more skills and personal assets that can play a positive role in my life.  It didnt give me skills that I could branch off in other areas of life, like work, or self confidence.

And that leads me to photography, aside from me DO having an interest in it, I feel it is a more beneficial long term hobby with more positive rewards.  It also, lets you see how beautiful life really is.  You get to interact with a whole new world of people, and what their style is, preferences etc.  Personally, I find it very fascinating learning about others styles.

sportyaccordy
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Re: Photography vs console video games: The better long term investment?
In reply to Cameranoobie, 5 months ago

Both are terrible "investments". No camera or video game equipment ever appreciates in value.

I think it all comes down to individual preferences. I like photography but I am just not the kind of person who will go out and take photos for the sake of taking photos. If I'm not going to an event I want to capture the camera stays home. But I do love video games, because for the cost of 5-6 track days in my car or on my bike, I can have a home rig that will let me "drive" pretty much any car I want on any car I want whenever I want for as long as I want. Does it rival the actual experience of driving? Obviously not completely, but it's been a close enough substitute to keep me interested for a while now.

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Morris Sullivan
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Depends....
In reply to Cameranoobie, 5 months ago

One can treat photography just like you did console video games. Spending hours on end testing, researching, discussing online etc. and not produce anything meaningful or develop any useful skills.

Photography can be very beneficial to your life, but only if you are actually taking photos of things that interest you. A little research and testing is helpful, but it should only be a very small percentage of the time spent on this hobby.

I suppose you've figured this out by now, but it's worth mentioning.

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Morris Sullivan
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Re: Photography vs console video games: The better long term investment?
In reply to sportyaccordy, 5 months ago

sportyaccordy wrote:

Both are terrible "investments". No camera or video game equipment ever appreciates in value.

The gear is not what appreciates, it's the photos that often do. If not monetarily, at least emotionally.

I think it all comes down to individual preferences. I like photography but I am just not the kind of person who will go out and take photos for the sake of taking photos. If I'm not going to an event I want to capture the camera stays home. But I do love video games, because for the cost of 5-6 track days in my car or on my bike, I can have a home rig that will let me "drive" pretty much any car I want on any car I want whenever I want for as long as I want. Does it rival the actual experience of driving? Obviously not completely, but it's been a close enough substitute to keep me interested for a while now.

Video games are great, but they are like much like alcohol. They can make an evening fun, but the next day you've got nothing more than memories. Neither are going to make a long term improvement in your life. Just short term fun.

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Cameranoobie
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Re: Photography vs console video games: The better long term investment?
In reply to sportyaccordy, 5 months ago

sportyaccordy wrote:

Both are terrible "investments". No camera or video game equipment ever appreciates in value.

I think it all comes down to individual preferences. I like photography but I am just not the kind of person who will go out and take photos for the sake of taking photos. If I'm not going to an event I want to capture the camera stays home. But I do love video games, because for the cost of 5-6 track days in my car or on my bike, I can have a home rig that will let me "drive" pretty much any car I want on any car I want whenever I want for as long as I want. Does it rival the actual experience of driving? Obviously not completely, but it's been a close enough substitute to keep me interested for a while now.

My biggest concern with photography is the long term rewards.

Like I said, Ive always had an interest for photography, its just that Ive always put it on the back burner and never really pursued it until just over a year ago.  Yes, the fact that i was so heavily invested into video games, most definitely play a large part of that.

But I have friends who are prof. photographers and they always tell me that, photography isnt worth the investment (money wise) unless you plan on doing it profiesssionally.  As in having your own business and making money from it.
 True/False?

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Morris Sullivan
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Re: Photography vs console video games: The better long term investment?
In reply to Cameranoobie, 5 months ago

Cameranoobie wrote:

sportyaccordy wrote:

Both are terrible "investments". No camera or video game equipment ever appreciates in value.

I think it all comes down to individual preferences. I like photography but I am just not the kind of person who will go out and take photos for the sake of taking photos. If I'm not going to an event I want to capture the camera stays home. But I do love video games, because for the cost of 5-6 track days in my car or on my bike, I can have a home rig that will let me "drive" pretty much any car I want on any car I want whenever I want for as long as I want. Does it rival the actual experience of driving? Obviously not completely, but it's been a close enough substitute to keep me interested for a while now.

My biggest concern with photography is the long term rewards.

Like I said, Ive always had an interest for photography, its just that Ive always put it on the back burner and never really pursued it until just over a year ago. Yes, the fact that i was so heavily invested into video games, most definitely play a large part of that.

But I have friends who are prof. photographers and they always tell me that, photography isnt worth the investment (money wise) unless you plan on doing it profiesssionally. As in having your own business and making money from it.
True/False?

What do you mean by "worth the investment (money wise)" If you don't plan on doing it professionally the payout money wise will be zero. Did you have something else in mind?

The "investment" in photography gear -if not done professionally- is payed out in the photos you make and the enjoyment you get from taking them, and possibly sharing them.

Maybe I'm missing something in your question.

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Gerry Winterbourne
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Re: Photography vs console video games: The better long term investment?
In reply to Cameranoobie, 5 months ago

Cameranoobie wrote:

My biggest concern with photography is the long term rewards.

Like I said, Ive always had an interest for photography, its just that Ive always put it on the back burner and never really pursued it until just over a year ago. Yes, the fact that i was so heavily invested into video games, most definitely play a large part of that.

But I have friends who are prof. photographers and they always tell me that, photography isnt worth the investment (money wise) unless you plan on doing it profiesssionally. As in having your own business and making money from it.

As others have said, there's a big difference between expenditure and investment.  If you want to earn money then what you spend is an investment and it's a poor one if you earn less than you spend.  And that includes the value of your time: if you could earn more in a different enterprise it's still a poor investment even if you show a small profit.

A hobby isn't an investment; what you spend on it is expenditure.  You spend money on lots of things, some for necessities and some for pleasure.  The only question about spending on pleasure is whether you feel you've got enough pleasure for what you've spent.  Time spent on a hobby doesn't matter - a big reason why we have hobbies is to give us something to do.

Professionals don't do things for pleasure so this consideration isn't in their thinking.  The worst people in the world to advise about expenditure on a hobby are professionals in the same field.

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OldSchoolNewSchool
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Re: Photography vs console video games: The better long term investment?
In reply to Morris Sullivan, 5 months ago

If you are looking at photography/photographic equipment strictly as an investment, then it really isn't a good investment unless it's used to make your living, or exceeds (or perhaps meets) the returns of other investments, as in investing in rare equipment that is likely to go up in value.

If you are buying the equipment, using it frequently, and it provides entertainment/satisfaction in where it takes you and the images you're getting, then it is a good "investment" -- just don't expect to sell the equipment for a profit down the road.

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yardcoyote
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Re: Photography vs console video games: The better long term investment?
In reply to Cameranoobie, 5 months ago

To me, the key to this is creativity.  Hobbies/activities/avocations where you can actually make something that never existed before--whether it's a photograph, a painting, a story, a blog post, a comic book, a song, a pair of socks,  or whatever--are inherently more interesting to me than those that center around consumption of someone else's products. I therefore consider them more worthy of my financial investment. I may not make any money, much less a profit, but I will make something.

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joejack951
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Re: Photography vs console video games: The better long term investment?
In reply to OldSchoolNewSchool, 5 months ago

OldSchoolNewSchool wrote:

If you are looking at photography/photographic equipment strictly as an investment, then it really isn't a good investment unless it's used to make your living, or exceeds (or perhaps meets) the returns of other investments, as in investing in rare equipment that is likely to go up in value.

If you are buying the equipment, using it frequently, and it provides entertainment/satisfaction in where it takes you and the images you're getting, then it is a good "investment" -- just don't expect to sell the equipment for a profit down the road.

If you would otherwise be paying someone to take photos for you, then buying and using your own gear can earn some money back in a sense. I can be very generous to my wife's and my own spending on photography gear and justify it by claiming that we've have spent even more hiring a photographer to constantly document our lives.

Of course, if I compare to what I've spent on automotive tools and how much I've saved over the years doing my own work, then the photography spending really starts to look ridiculous. But at least I can prove a "profit." It's also something I enjoy doing and as a result of getting so involved in some sections of the automotive world, I also made a good chunk of money buying and selling used parts further putting me in the black.

However, it all looks ridiculous in comparison to the money I saved and the health gains that were the result of my riding a $350 bike to work for five years, allowing my wife and I to only own and insure a single car throughout that period. In gas alone, it was thousands of dollars. Of course, I blew a big chunk of that savings on my replacement commuter bike

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TMK1971
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Re: Photography vs console video games: The better long term investment?
In reply to Cameranoobie, 5 months ago

It sounds to me...and I could be wrong...that you have an addictive personality. When you jump into things you jump all the way, do as much of it as possible, and don't look around to see if you are in too deep.

Be carefull with photography. It can suck you in and it can have you buying this and that and before you know it, you MIGHT be looking back saying that you wasted a lot of money on gear that wasn't necessary to your style of photography.

Who knows...you MAY be on a fishing forum in 5-8 years saying how you wasted 10-15,000 on Camera Equipment and never left your house to shoot a single photo. Start a thread on if fishing equipment is a good investment.

In all seriousness, I wish you the best of luck and hope you can find peace and some enjoyment in life. Remember, most everything is good in moderation!

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micronean
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Re: Photography vs console video games: The better long term investment?
In reply to Cameranoobie, 5 months ago

I'm a fan of both.

As I get older (i'm 34) I tend to prefer photography over video games, because you're able to go outside and enjoy the world and see new things.

Video games these days, though impressive, take way too long to complete and are nowhere as fun as they used to be. Also, the fanbase is often very young while photographers are more my age and have a variety of things to talk about. Video games, online, is a random crapshoot of swearing juveniles.

However, I'm glad I kept my SNES games in mint condition. Their value keeps going up, especially as we head out of the "physical game disc/cartridge" paradigm and into "cloud gaming".

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Raist3d
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Too generalized title
In reply to Cameranoobie, 5 months ago

That's like saying swimming vs horse riding, gymnastics vs windsurfing.

That you spent so much money on console gaming over 7-8 years is you. Many people just buy a few games- some of those games quite replay able and don't bother with much else.

Some people do videogames and photography (points at self).

You can only really speak for yourself here - which you are but the title seems to put two things that are so different to a comparison that to me can't really be made.

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PenPix
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Both can be social
In reply to Cameranoobie, 5 months ago

I too have spent a good chunk of my spare time playing video games. The best time were when I was playing with friends... fighting games, Co-op RPGs, MMOs. I still have bonds with people I met online.
The same goes for photography. I keep a circle of friends that are enthusiastic like me and we go on shoots or talk about it over lunch. With my non-photographer friends, I take the pictures at the parties and trips we go on. Sometimes they will model for me.
It's not an investment in monetary terms, but an investment in yourself. I can think of much worse things I can be doing, so it is at least keeping me out of trouble!

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Mike_PEAT
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Neither is an investment!
In reply to Cameranoobie, 5 months ago

You should think of both as "enjoyment for today" as cameras and console game systems quickly lose their value.

Unless you're talking about a rare antique Leica, or certain arcade machines of the 80's, it's landfill!

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TheChefs
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Re: Photography vs console video games: The better long term investment?
In reply to Cameranoobie, 5 months ago

None of them are investment. They are way of keeping us busy and wasting our resources and time which could be spent on more productive activities. That's what hobbies are to allow us unwind.

And like above poster said you sound like have addictive personality and will waste a lot of your time and money on any new hobby.

An investment are shares, real estate/properties, precious metals etc... things which appreciate in value based on speculation etc. They can drop in value as well, so you can end up being rich or poor. But with enough calculated risk you end up being rich.

Both video games and photography are going to make you both, money and time poor. Terrible investments. Just like any other hobby really.

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Lee Jay
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In reply to Cameranoobie, 5 months ago

...Pong.

Well, my parents did, anyway.  I've never bought a game console in my entire life.  Total waste of money.

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Jack Hass
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Re: Photography vs console video games: The better long term investment?
In reply to Cameranoobie, 5 months ago

I had this talk recently with my kids. I am 35, ive played games since i was 5. They have had games all their lives but i have been cutting back on games for them. I recently bought my 10yo an A33 to learn on. I think it better prepares them for something useful in life, and will cost less over the long term. Games get boring, then you want a new one. I still do play one game on my computer, but it's free to play (it's called planetside 2). They have a few games themselves but we haven't bought one in almost a year.

So my opinion, cameras are much better per dollar. They cost more up front usually but i think you can get far more out of them, and things like lenses can last decades. Video games are limited in their lifespan, and the new systems are $400 alone. I plan on teaching my little one enough to where he can make a living out of photography if thats what he wants. He has his own computer and PS installed. Now he has his own camera with 3 lenses. I wish i had that at 10.

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Jack Hass
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Re: Photography vs console video games: The better long term investment?
In reply to TheChefs, 5 months ago

TheChefs wrote:

None of them are investment. They are way of keeping us busy and wasting our resources and time which could be spent on more productive activities. That's what hobbies are to allow us unwind.

What does productive mean? You miss the point of life. By your standards, nothing matters. Even a job is worthless once you are dead. What should matter is how much your goings on improve your quality of life. Who cares how much money you had if you were miserable. Who cares how famous you were if you never had any enjoyment. All we have is time, then we die. A successful life, by my definition, is a happy one. Nothing else matters. So if this guy is happy, who are you to judge his hobby?

And like above poster said you sound like have addictive personality and will waste a lot of your time and money on any new hobby.

An investment are shares, real estate/properties, precious metals etc... things which appreciate in value based on speculation etc. They can drop in value as well, so you can end up being rich or poor. But with enough calculated risk you end up being rich.

Again, worthless if you don't have any fun doing so. You place far too much worth in money. It is only as valuable as the enjoyment it can bring you, and some people would rather not spend 99% of their time working.

Both video games and photography are going to make you both, money and time poor. Terrible investments. Just like any other hobby really.

And again, horrible opinion. They are perfect investments if the person enjoys their time. You claim they sound like they have an addictive personality. I think you sound like a greedy boring human.

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Jack Hass
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Re: Both can be social
In reply to PenPix, 5 months ago

PenPix wrote:

I too have spent a good chunk of my spare time playing video games. The best time were when I was playing with friends... fighting games, Co-op RPGs, MMOs. I still have bonds with people I met online.
The same goes for photography. I keep a circle of friends that are enthusiastic like me and we go on shoots or talk about it over lunch. With my non-photographer friends, I take the pictures at the parties and trips we go on. Sometimes they will model for me.
It's not an investment in monetary terms, but an investment in yourself. I can think of much worse things I can be doing, so it is at least keeping me out of trouble!

Totally agree. An investment is only useful insomuch as it can make you happy. The point lost on a few of these guys is that different things make different people happy.

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