Gear ac­qui­si­tion syn­drome

Amateur Photographer - - Your Letters -

It was a plea­sure to read the ar­ti­cle Suc­cess on a shoe­string (AP, 22 Septem­ber). It brought back many happy mem­o­ries of my own ‘grass roots’ pho­tog­ra­phy. It re­in­forced the fact that it’s the photographer that counts, not the equip­ment. How­ever, I feel that the pho­tog­ra­phy press is at least partly to blame for preva­lence of ‘Gear Ac­qui­si­tion Syn­drome’.

My first ‘se­ri­ous’ cam­era was a used Zorki 4K and I used se­cond-hand equip­ment for years, winning com­pe­ti­tions and sell­ing images to mag­a­zines in the process. Now near­ing re­tire­ment, I was last year able to buy a Canon EOS 5D Mark IV.

Not long af­ter I bought the 5D, Nikon launched its D850 – with­out doubt, a stun­ning cam­era. I was still very pleased with my Canon, but I was as­ton­ished by some of the re­views I read, mostly on­line.

Many of the re­views drew com­par­isons be­tween the 5D Mark IV and the D850, and had I been sus­cep­ti­ble to GAS I could have been in­flu­enced. In one re­view it said the ‘EOS 5D Mark IV is dead and buried’; an­other one ad­vised Canon users to ‘check the trade-in value’ of their gear with a view to ‘up­grad­ing’ to the Nikon.

AP is to be con­grat­u­lated on never be­ing guilty of do­ing this. Yes, you fea­ture re­views of new equip­ment be­cause there will al­ways be times when we have gen­uine rea­sons to re­place or up­grade our gear and it’s help­ful to be able to read un­bi­ased and in­formed re­views.

I learned so much by us­ing ba­sic, used gear and I’ve car­ried this knowl­edge and skills for­ward into my own ‘dig­i­tal age’. My advice to any­one would be start with the ba­sics, in terms of equip­ment and learn­ing, and save some money in the process. John An­der­ton The in­ter­net is full of nut­ters, John, for whom every cam­era that comes out is ei­ther the best or the worst thing ever made. We’re a bit more level headed. We’d also like to say thanks to MPB for pro­vid­ing the cam­eras for our cover shoot – Nigel Ather­ton, edi­tor

John An­der­ton loved our Se­cond-hand Spe­cial is­sue

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