I recently gave myself a challenge over on my Twitter account. From there, I took it to my Instagram account. The challenge was to see if using 10 different cameras would make any difference when it came to my photo quality.
When I say quality, I’m not just talking about image clarity. I’m talking about framing, creativity, and focus. All of these things combined should make a difference in the photographic outcome.
Here’s a quick rundown on what I believe I learned.
Firstly, don’t include a $30 sports camera in an experiment like this. The results are more challenging than the results are worth. Still, I set the challenge and I stuck to it.
Before I get into further learnings, here’s a list of the cameras I used in this experiment.
- 4K Ultra HD sports camera
- Nikon Coolpix L820
- Fujifilm FinePix S5700
- Nikon Coolpix S7000
- Panasonic DMC-FZ2
- Nikon D60
- iPhone 8 Plus
- iPhone 11
- Huawei Mate 10
- Huawei P30 Pro
As I was posting the results of this experiment to Twitter, I was asked if I also used film cameras. I wasn’t ready for that question, but it was a great question to ask. It might be time to dig out the old Canon AE-1. That statement leads me to my next point.
Throughout this experiment, I discovered that I am glad I’m a camera hoarder. Every time I upgrade to a new camera, I keep the old camera. I can’t part with cameras or guitars—the latter shouldn’t surprise anybody who has spent any time on this website.
If your digital camera works and you’re comfortable using it, you should be able to capture a decent photograph. Sure an expensive camera is going to have more/better features, but if you know your equipment and your subject, you should be able to produce something you’re happy with.
Do you think a chef can’t cook in a cheap kitchen? I bet they can.
Another discovery I made was that I personally enjoyed the challenge of reacquainting myself with the different cameras and their features. I’d forgotten how much I enjoyed macro photography. I also forgot how much I should use a tripod to improve some of my low light photographs.
At the end of the day, my greatest discovery was that I missed taking photographs. I missed photographing guitars in particular. I was happy with 90% of the photographic results. The experiment was a success.
I’ll finish with this. The photographs below include one example from each camera listed above. What I did for this gallery was apply one Look Up Table (LUT) to every image. This hopefully makes each image appear to almost come from the same photoshoot. If that is what you see, then I guess the results of this experiment are that the camera doesn’t make enough of a difference to not take the photographs you want to take.
Equipment shouldn’t hold you back. Go take photos!