Getting Geared Up

How you can get build to professional photography equipment on a budget. Part One: Don’t end up that guy!     Written by: Adam Bevan –   Like most […]

How you can get build to professional photography equipment on a budget.

Part One: Don’t end up that guy!



getting geared up

Written by: Adam Bevan –


Like most people – and on most topics – I’m not interested in average performance.

Unfortunately though (also like most people… ) I don’t have an unlimited budget in order to achieve maximum results. In an ideal world, everyone would buy a Nikon D4S or a Canon 1D and a set of 3 or 4 professional lenses, such as Nikon’s “holy trinity”, but that might set you back more than £10,000 – and I’m assuming that you don’t want to go to a loan shark and risk having your legs broken to get a nice portfolio of pictures; no matter how committed you are to the glass!

It’s at this point that I should mention (unapologetically) that most of my examples will be Nikon based products. I’m not saying they are the best. You need to do your own research beyond this mini-series to find what is right for you. I will say that some of the information I present is harder to achieve with the smaller manufacturers like Pentax and Sony, though.

You are presented with an awkward scenario as an amateur wanting to make it into the professional world of photography – you need stunning images that people want to buy in order to make money from this industry… but that takes good equipment that you cannot afford when you are beginning in this business… so you’re stumped, right? You might as well just try your luck with your camera phone and hope that your detailed understanding of composition will pull you through in lieu of any control on aperture, iso or shutter speed, yes?


Fortunately, no. There are a lot of ways that you can get around this conundrum. This series of articles will explore the ways that you can optimize your budget – whatever it might be – in order to achieve the best results for your needs.  I don’t want you to be that guy that ends up massively overspending because you haven’t thought through your options properly, or researched this topic sufficiently before pulling out your wallet.

In part two, we will discuss whether you really need a full frame camera or not. Sure, they are the biggest bits of kit money can buy, and they may make you look like you know what you are doing, but if you don’t need one then that minimum of £1000 you spent on the camera could have been far better invested elsewhere.

In part three, we will look at a favorite option of mine – used equipment. Yes, I know, everyone likes a new shiny, boxed beauty to open and enjoy, but the honest reality is that besides a smaller amount of warranty cover, you might well be saving yourself 50% or more by not having that 2 week period where the new equipment glows. After all, it’s not going to look that good after a couple of weeks with you anyway!

In part four, we will wrap it all up and I will share with you some of the sources that I used to achieve massive savings and successfully got a professional (or vey high semi-professional) set of equipment for less than £2000.


Who is this for? Basically anyone on any budget. You might be sitting there now with £10,000 thinking that you want to spend it all on your equipment. I might save you £5000 here and you can go travel somewhere amazing with the rest of the money and take some great shots! You might be someone who wants to get the cheapest set up money can buy and just need help in getting enough to start out. Most likely, you’re someone in between those two extremes – but the information will help all of the above.


I will be giving you sources that you can look at to search for your own equipment and tips on how to find the cheapest possible prices, making sure that you optimize your hard earned money and, at least from a hardware perspective, get the best that you can afford in order to take great photos. The execution then, is up to you.

See you in Part 2!

Post comments below on any bargains you’ve got on equipment, or any time you really got ripped off and “been that guy”.



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