I think Thom was right, again...

Started Mar 26, 2013 | Discussions thread
OP PHXAZCRAIG Forum Pro • Posts: 14,463
Re: It really depends on how bad your GAS is (gear acquisition syndrome)

Daniel Lauring wrote:

To recap.

#1 Don't buy the new model unless it specifically addresses a problem you are having with the old one (like improved focus where focus was a problem.)

Check.  For the most part, my history of photography upgrades has been in search of the ability to shoot in lower and lower light levels, without flash.    There were other reasons, but that's been a big one.

In 1992 I switched from using a Canon AE1-p to a Nikon n8008s, primarily to get autofocus.

In 2005, I switch from using a Nikon N90s (10 years of use by then) to a D70s, to go digital.

I might note that I had almost completely switched to shooting slides for several years primarily because it was easier to scan them than negatives.

The D70s to D200 upgrade was mainly about the body and general ease of shooting control.   Almost everything else was mostly to get another stop of ISO capability, with dynamic range improvements as a side benefit.

#2 Sell your old body as quickly to maximize the money you get from it.

I don't do this.   Primarily because I like to shoot with two bodies at the same time, for the flexibility (different lenses, different film speeds, even different formats).   By the time I bought a D700, the D200 was worth so little that I prefer to just keep it.

#3 Don't buy a model right when it comes out.  Wait for prices to drop.

In every case, with the exception of the D300, I've not bought a new camera before it was a year old.   The D300 I bought the day it was first available, and thus I got maximum useful life out of it, to an extent.   Same with lenses, until the AF-S 80-400 which I preordered.

#4 Investigate used and refurbs.  This requires #3 as it takes a little time for them to hit the market.

I mostly do buy new, but have bought some lenses used.  14-24.  85F1.8 AF.  Yashicamat 124g.

P.S.  Digital has allowed me to learn and improve in a much shorter period of time, and at lower cost than analog because of how cheap it is to shoot.  I can shoot lots of ways and learn almost instantly vs. shoot less and wait for the developer results.

Same here, though some aspects of film caused me to learn in different ways.  I used to do a lot of spot metering with slides.

I used to spend about $135 or so on film developing after a typical vacation trip.   That's not including the cost of the film in the first place, or the time and money I spent scanning (Nikon LS-4000 with the wretched slide feeder).  I would have shot more if it had been cheaper.   With digital, I'd sometimes do a quick 3-shot bracket.  With long lenses, I shoot many shots of the same thing and then pick the best in terms of sharpness.

I rarely chimp my shots in the field, except watching the histograms and blinkies in bright light.  I can't evaluate shots on a camera anyway.  Many times I've thought I nailed a shot only to find it slightly blurred once I got home and saw it on a monitor.

Nothing has made more difference to improve my technique in the past several years than rating my images and deciding why I liked one over the other.  Nothing has improved my composition more than studying my wife's images, who has a much better eye than I for composition.  (We make a good team on portrait shoots of friends).

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