Getting Pro Equipment at half price!

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Photography is without a doubt, a very expensive hobby, especially if your hobby doesn’t earn you anything (which of course would make it a profession and not a hobby). Anyways, the fact is that not everyone can afford all the expensive equip involved. But it is also a fact that many do end up with expensive equip without paying as much as one would expect. How?

Answer – Refurbished or used equipment. For those of you who are not aware, refurbished equipment is basically a brand new product that is being sold at a much lower price simply because someone opened it, used it for a week, didn’t like it, so returned it. It does NOT mean that the product is not good, but simply that the previous customer didn’t like it, for whatever reason. The products returned in such a manner undergo very strict quality control. They are taken apart and checked thoroughly for any technical problems, and also cosmetic issues. Once checked, the item is considered fit for resale and is put up for sale at a price that allows the company to just about recover their cost. Since it is technically not brand new, they have to sell it at a lower price point. And THAT is where we benefit. The quality control on refurb is as strict, if not stricter than normal. The only compromise is the warranty, which is usually reduced to about 3 months. But if something goes wrong in that time, some brands/showrooms/sellers replace the product with a brand new one! This I say by personal experience. So the point I’m trying to make – go for refurb if you can. A good place to find refurbished equipment – RefurbDepot.com. You can find decent deals at Amazon as well. I remember seeing a Rebel XSi with the 18-55mm IS kit lens for $500 refurb!

Another great option is getting used equipment. The advantages of used equipment actually make it pretty attractive.

-It is cheap enough as it is, and personally, I don’t mind a couple of scratches (obviously not on the places that matter) if it knocks off another 100 bucks.

-You’re sure that the product is good. With certain lenses having quality control issues and many ‘bad copies’ out there, you can easily check personally/ask for pictures to make sure that you have a good copy. And depending on who you buy from, certain sellers in forums have enough credibility for you to trust them without any issues.

-You can actually make a profit if you decide to resell what you’ve bought. It is not uncommon to see people selling equip they bought used at prices higher than what they paid.

But buying used equip has its risks, and we’ll dabble upon that in our next post on how to make sure you’re not duped when buying used equipment.

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