If you only had $400 to spend on a camera, what would you choose?

Super tight fixed income budget means $400 is already splurging, and will have to wait for October, but if that is all you could spend, what would you choose? Something that can accept screw on diopters and filters is a must. 


  • Triem23
    Triem23 Posts: 20,080 Ambassador
    edited April 2019

    I would wait and re-ask this question in August or September. Many new cameras were announced at, or around NAB. These new cameras will be out by then, which usually leads to price drops in older models. The market will be different in six months.

    Here's my real life example: For last year's Australia trip I bought a GoPro Hero 6 Black. 32 days after my purchase the Hero 7 launch was announced for the following week. At the same price as the Hero 6. I hadn't even opened the Hero 6 yet... But I had a 30 day return window. If I had purchased the H6 two days later, or the announcement of the H7 had been two days earlier, I'd now own an H7, not H6.*

    Point is camera gear changes quickly, now, and the manufacturers don't put TOO much lead time on announcements. 

    As a reminder, what's your current camera(s)?

    *My wife for Xmas bought me some GoPro accessories. I felt bad - the GoPro turned out to be a camera I don't like much, and I had listed it for sale on eBay. Canceled the listing. The silly things one does for love... 

  • braj
    braj Posts: 75
    edited April 2019

     I have an old hsr50exr that has a 24-1000mm effective lens, it does 1080p @60fps, no native 24 for example, no 4k, is not great in low light, doesn't have manual aperture settings in video mode.  But the lens gives me a lot of options, I have an old non-video Nikon d40 also and a few lenses, effective to 450mm is the longest, but it has no auto focus unless the body allows that, so it means a 7000 series Nikon if I want to go the Dslr route. I also do stills, so I have compelling reasons to go that route. But if I got a smaller sensor camera I could have smaller lenses for the same effective reach. I honestly would probably be happy with the Fuji if it handled low light better, and had manual controls. It has a bigger sensor than a Lumix Fz80, but I was considering that as a replacement . It fits in my budget, but it isn't very expandable, and the smaller sensor. Then there is weather proofing, my Fuji isn't, but that would be a plus. Anyhow, this is the camera I essentially will replace. I want to be able to go from bugs to birds with it, if it allows removable lenses, then that qualifies, even if I don't have the lens yet. But  economical lenses need to be available, that's another reason Nikon may be my best bet. 

    I also have an LG G7 running Filmic Pro or the native camera camcorder, which is sometimes better depending. 


  • braj
    braj Posts: 75

    I ended up buying a Panasonic G7, so my phone is a G7, my camera is a G7. I'm looking into getting a cheap $30 35mm 1.7 CCTV camera  lens and and adapter, some extension tubes, a Nikon to M4/3 adapter, and maybe save up for an Olympus 40-150 later in the year, but I have a lot to learn about what I need and what's out there, I have to see how my Nikon lenses fare. I think all things considered this was a good choice for me, good flexibility, a decent size sensor, good low light (especially compared to what I have now). It has a touch screen with focus pulling and 4k video, and wifi. For me, it seems to be the best fit. I may be able to improve and slim down my macro rig, I guess that is to be seen.

    I almost went with a used Nikon 7100,  then changed my mind to an fz1000, and finally settled on the G7.  I would love to hear insights about filming with this camera and using the footage in Hitfilm.