Many people see investments like the new Nikon D4 as ridiculous. They cost an arm and a leg but how can anyone afford them? Well there’s something of a camera-circle-of-life out there involving your old gear that if you’re not a part of, you really should be.
When I buy a necessary items of equipment, like a camera, I like to think of it not as a piece of technology, but something that helps make my business run. I have a studio which I pay a constant rent for. I also renovated the location which cost me a decent amount, but when I think of my rent, I don’t include the cost of the renovation, just the monthly fee. Cameras should be seen in the same light. Yes I paid around $5K for my D3s two years ago. But I won’t be holding on to it if I buy a D4. Why would I? I’m going to sell it. I’ll probably receive around $4K for it and I’ll have to cover another $2K and change myself. This hike in price is also unusual as most replacement bodies come in at around the same price as their predecessor was when it was new. Normally, you’d need to cover about 20-25% of the cost of the camera if you sold your old one.
This, folks, is how we justify these purchases. It’s not that we’re simply dropping $6K happy-go-lucky styles. We’re continuing our “rent”. This difference in price is the rent we pay for our cameras. Yes we did put down a lot at some point, but forget about that. That investment is gone and you won’t be needing to recreate again. From now on, you need to put aside about $50, maybe $75 each month and you’ll be able to replace a D3s, or a D4 relatively easily. This camera rent will keep me and my company up to date with technologies for the foreseeable future. I even enjoy thinking that new technologies will be available and I’ll only have to drop 20% of the asking price in order to play with it myself.
For anyone on the fence about buying new gear, or any gear for that matter, I think it’s important to keep this notion in mind. You’ll have to make an initial investment. But when it comes time to upgrade you won’t be looking at reinvesting that same amount. The world of up-to-date gear may not be as scary as you once thought. And also keep in mind that the launch of the D4 means plenty of D3s’ and D3′s on the used market. Which likely means an increase in D700′s and D300s’, too. The circle of life goes on… enjoy my horrific drawing.
Thanks for reading,