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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre General Photography Talk 
Thread started 18 Oct 2017 (Wednesday) 19:28
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Pro Cameras "dirt cheap" by 2020

 
mdvaden
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Oct 18, 2017 19:28 |  #1

There are so many good camearas available now, it looks like cameras for professional photography will be dirt cheap by 2020. I'm making the estimate based off the fact that thousands of photographers made images that wowed clients, using the likes of Canon 5D mk ii, Nikon D700 and other bodies. Good images were taken, photographers claimed they were "professionals" using cameras deemed old now, and many clients were satisfied. So with current cameras as good and better, and new models coming out, it seems that by 2020, photographers could use any new or used models dating 2008 to 2016 and still take great photos. And they should be able to find such cameras for $800 to $1500. I consider that as fairly "cheap" or inexpensive to crank out very nice photos. Not knocking $3000 or $6000 cameras. But it crossed my mind today that today's cameras are damn good, and will still be damn good 4 years down the road or 8 years down the road after their price value drops like a brick. This probably won't dictate the best bodies I upgrade to. But seems promising for for backup option costs.

On another note, it's unimaginable that Canon would never release a pro grade mirrorless. So I can only imagine what each manufacturer will be producing for options and technology 12 years from now. For those who can afford new gear and make income, it's certain that for plenty of them, that technology streamlines their workload enough to compensate much of the extra cost.


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Oct 18, 2017 20:08 |  #2

Well... many people still using older cameras and still produce amazing photos. Just saw a 1D3 sell for 450 so your target is alot higher than need be. Even the 5DC can be had for $300 and that camera would be able to make someone alot of "money" (to be deemed professional).

Likewise I've seen "professionals" use $500 rebel cameras.

When I bought my 5D4 I knew that that camera would be a 10 year camera. Plenty capable and little to no reason to upgrade for the "next best thing". It's a year old now... we'll see what comes but there is many very good cameras available on the open market.


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Oct 19, 2017 10:34 |  #3

The Canon 1Ds was a pro camera back in 2002, and now you can get it dirt cheap.

 :p


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Oct 19, 2017 10:50 |  #4

Pro cameras are already dirt cheap.

If all it takes to designate a camera as a pro body is it being used to generate income, then all of them are already there.

But many pro-grade (by build and design purpose) bodies area already very inexpensive and still very capable.

At the most basic level, just picking up any working modern dSLR (even a $40 Canon 10D or $50 Rebel XT) with a working lens ($100 50mm F1.8 STM or $80 18-55 STM, etc) and a flash and a stand and accessories and modifier ($250 maybe for something decent and cheap) you can start producing images that are very good, modern, and still completely relevant since most work these days is easily digital and viewed/shared online. If they're making an income from it, and this is common, they're professional and so is the gear. Right?

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tdlavigne
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Oct 21, 2017 01:54 |  #5

Technically even the entry level cameras of today are way way better than pro cameras of 10 years ago. 2008 or thereabouts was really the big jump in tech/features/IQ for digital, and all those are fairly cheap now that they're old, but they're still solid cameras for what they are. Canon 7D, 5DII...Nikon D300/700/600/800, even Sony A6000/A7 and Panasonic GH4 are all under $1000 now. Some (7D, A6000) can be found for $300 or so. $600 can get you a 5DII/D600/GH4. It really is a good time to be a photographer, or a newbie getting into photography.

I paid $1100 for my D800e last year, $700 for my D610, and $1510 for my GH5. I remember paying $2000 for my crappy 6mp Nikon D50 that couldn't shoot over ISO 400 without the images turning into mush back in 2006 lol.




  
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Perfectly ­ Frank
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Oct 21, 2017 02:05 |  #6

If the OP is right does that mean in 3 years I'll be able to buy a new 1DxII for 500 bucks?


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Oct 22, 2017 12:23 |  #7

You know when your pro camera equipment is defunct, when the Canon Professional strike it from their list!


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mdvaden
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Oct 24, 2017 09:40 |  #8

tdlavigne wrote in post #18477350 (external link)
Technically even the entry level cameras of today are way way better than pro cameras of 10 years ago. 2008 or thereabouts was really the big jump in tech/features/IQ for digital, and all those are fairly cheap now that they're old, but they're still solid cameras for what they are. Canon 7D, 5DII...Nikon D300/700/600/800, even Sony A6000/A7 and Panasonic GH4 are all under $1000 now. Some (7D, A6000) can be found for $300 or so. $600 can get you a 5DII/D600/GH4. It really is a good time to be a photographer, or a newbie getting into photography.

I paid $1100 for my D800e last year, $700 for my D610, and $1510 for my GH5. I remember paying $2000 for my crappy 6mp Nikon D50 that couldn't shoot over ISO 400 without the images turning into mush back in 2006 lol.

Exactly.

Although the best and most recent cameras today will lend an advantage, I can see excellent portraits or wedding photos stemming from the top end of consumer cameras and pro cameras half a decade old. A good used model now will probably hold value longer for a few years. About 4 years ago, I bought two Canon 5D mk ii's in Portland with about 5000 actuations each, for $900 each, from two photographers. I put less than 10,000 on each body and sold them in southern Oregon about a year ago for $900 and $850.


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mikeinctown
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Oct 25, 2017 11:53 |  #9

Define "dirt cheap"




  
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Tom ­ Reichner
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Oct 25, 2017 12:12 |  #10

mikeinctown wrote in post #18480762 (external link)
Define "dirt cheap"

For me, "dirt cheap" would be a camera body that pretty much meets my professional needs, that I can get used for about $900. . Or a camera body that kinda meets most of my professional needs, for around $600, shipped and PayPalled.

For instance, a Canon 1Dx would pretty much meet my professional needs. . If I could get one now for about $900, I would consider that dirt cheap. . Unfortunately, I don't think used 1Dx bodies will reach this price point for another 6-8 years.

If I could get a 6D or a 7D Mk 2 for $600 right now, that would be what I'd consider "dirt cheap", because it's about 1/3 less than the typical going rate, and they are both something that would be useful to me and that I could make do with, and at this time I could afford to part with $600 and still manage to pay my bills for the next few months. . Unfortunately, I don't think either of these bodies will reach that price point for another 2-3 years.

I really miss the days when a used DSLR would drop to about 35% of it's original retail price within 3 or 4 years. . Bottom feeders like me really thrive when we can allow the early adaptors to suffer enormous amounts of depreciation......but sadly, that just doesn't happen to the same extent that it used to.

.


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Post edited 8 months ago by Wilt. (4 edits in all)
     
Oct 25, 2017 14:51 |  #11

Tom Reichner wrote in post #18480787 (external link)
For me, "dirt cheap" would be a camera body that pretty much meets my professional needs, that I can get used for about $900. . Or a camera body that kinda meets most of my professional needs, for around $600, shipped and PayPalled.

For instance, a Canon 1Dx would pretty much meet my professional needs. . If I could get one now for about $900, I would consider that dirt cheap. . Unfortunately, I don't think used 1Dx bodies will reach this price point for another 6-8 years.

The 1Dx launched at $6800 in 2012. Over a decade ago, digital cameras depreciated at a whopping compound annual depreciation of -36%, but the 1Dx seems to be declining at about -20%, which puts the $900 mark at about 2021

The $1800 7DII would hit the $600 level maybe about 2019-2020, depreciating at about -18% compounded annually.

So, back to the original topic, it would seem to be true. The problem is the ever-changing definition of 'pro quality' camera, as can be seen in the 1Ds vs. the 1DX.
It was possible to buy a 1DS for $450 in 2014, $350 in 2015, falling from its 2002 intro at $9000 at -32% compounded annual depreciation.


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Oct 25, 2017 15:26 as a reply to  @ Wilt's post |  #12

.

But you seem to be assuming that the rate of depreciation is chronologically linear, which it is not. . Unfortunately, such depreciation, with Canon bodies, has gotten to where it decelerates as the years go by. . And at some point, it seems to come to a standstill, such as it has with the 5D classic.

.

.


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Oct 25, 2017 22:05 |  #13

Tom Reichner wrote in post #18480971 (external link)
.

But you seem to be assuming that the rate of depreciation is chronologically linear, which it is not. . Unfortunately, such depreciation, with Canon bodies, has gotten to where it decelerates as the years go by. . And at some point, it seems to come to a standstill, such as it has with the 5D classic.

.

.

Yes, I oversimplify the depreciation rate, but I had no desire to try to get market values for each year, especially if POTN searches do not offer such results back that far! In 2012 I did write about 2002 $8000 1DS selling for $1000-1500 in 2012, and a uniform 83% retention of value each year does fit that model!! And by using 81.7% of value the depreciation STILL fit the market price of 2012 ($1060) and comes very close ($385) to the market value per a 2017 recent ad on another forum ($375) !


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Oct 25, 2017 23:22 |  #14

Tom Reichner wrote in post #18480971 (external link)
.

But you seem to be assuming that the rate of depreciation is chronologically linear, which it is not. . Unfortunately, such depreciation, with Canon bodies, has gotten to where it decelerates as the years go by. . And at some point, it seems to come to a standstill, such as it has with the 5D classic.

.

.

That's basically what I wrote in reply #8 ... unless you replied to the person of the post prior to yours.


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Oct 25, 2017 23:27 |  #15

Wilt wrote in post #18480923 (external link)
... SNIP ... The $1800 7DII would hit the $600 level maybe about 2019-2020, depreciating at about -18% compounded annually.

So, back to the original topic, it would seem to be true. The problem is the ever-changing definition of 'pro quality' camera, as can be seen in the 1Ds vs. the 1DX.
It was possible to buy a 1DS for $450 in 2014, $350 in 2015, falling from its 2002 intro at $9000 at -32% compounded annual depreciation.

I know that some photographers enjoy speed and convenience. But aside from "horsepower under the hood" I think that clients may become the arbitrator for what's a professional camera.

If they can get photos that they think are beautiful ... and certainly can be beautiful ... I think that's what will matter. They may not have a clue or care if the image came from a T6i, Canon 5D mk iv, or Sony a9. But if it looks nice, that will probably set the bar.


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Pro Cameras "dirt cheap" by 2020
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