What Equipment Should You Buy

In forums and comments all over the net you will see people asking the same question over and over again – “What equipment should I buy?”. Not meaning to sound rude, but this is like asking some stranger on the street “what kind of car should I buy?”, the simple answer is “you aren’t giving me enough information to give you an answer”.

If you are shooting sports you will want something with a fast autofocus and you may want a good zoom lens. Being able to use a low f-stop number will allow you to use a faster shutter speed.

For shooting weddings, you will want to spend extra on top quality lenses and a really good flash. You might also want to invest in an external battery pack for your flash.

If you are planning on doing still life or product shots then studio lights and backgrounds are going to be more important than pretty much anything else.

I do a wide variety of different types of shots and I do try to keep my spending to a minimum. For a good general purpose camera I use an Olympus E-500 DSLR with a 14-50 and a 45-150 lens. I use the Olympus FL-50 flash with a variety of modifiers like the Gary Fong Lightsphere. I also have two external battery packs for long event shoots.

In the studio I use Lowel Omni lights with different umbrellas (more on this in a future article).

What equipment you need is really dependent upon the type of photography you do and there is certainly no one setup that will work for every situation. Think carefully about what you will be using your equipment for so that you can make an informed decision and not waste money. We have a great camera shop by us and the workers are very experienced and helpful. Its up to you to ask the right questions and have the right answers for their questions.


Kerry Garrison lives in Castle Rock, Colorado with his wife and two dogs. With 10 years of experience shooting products and 5 years of experience in the wedding industry, Kerry brings a good deal of technical know-how and can explain topics in easy-to-understand terms.

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