Money is pretty tight these days and that can be a big problem for photographers afflicted with Gear Acquisition Syndrome (G.A.S.)—especially those in need of a new (old) digital camera. But take heart, because this video from the oddly named FoxTailWhipz YouTube channel reveals five discontinued models that perform far above their pay grade.
These are the top picks from photographer David Harig who provides a mini review of his favorites. They’re all discontinued interchangeable-lens cameras, either mirrorless or DSLRs, and are available at various price points ranging from $150-$200 on eBay or from respected dealers. Harig includes links in the description beneath the video.
Harig’s bottom line is this: “These cameras can all take great-looking photos, and most record good video, for beginners or anyone on a budget. He goes into quite a bit of detail on all five, discussing both their strong points and any limitations. If you already own lenses from one of these manufacturers, that brand may be the best place to start.
Harig kicks off the video with the Sony A5000 that can be purchased used for around $190. This is a mirrorless camera that was released in 2014, and for a 10-year-old model using the Sony E-mount it still has a lot to offer. It features an APS-C size CMOS sensor with 20MP resolution. While the A5000 is somewhat limited for video recording, it performs admirably when shooting stills. There’s a wide variety of compatible lens from Sony and third-party makers.
Next up is the Nikon D7000 which is at the top of the $200 range, and it’s the oldest model in the list—introduced back in 2010. But don’t let its age dissuade you because Harig says it “packs a crazy amount of pro-level features” that he describes in detail. It’s a robust DSLR using the reliable Nikon F-mount, has an APS-C crop sensor that captures really nice 16MP images, and (unlike mirrorless cameras) it features a bright optical viewfinder.
Harig’s third pick is the Pentax K-r, available used for about $150 that outperformed more expensive cameras when it became available in 2010. It’s also a crop-sensor DSLR, but it’s very compact for its class, shooting 12MP Raw files—the lowest resolution on this list. Yet Harig insists that you can capture great images for many purposes with a good 12MP sensor. On the downside he explains why you should probably skip this one if video is your thing.
Be sure to watch the video until the end, because there are two more cameras to consider—both with laudable capabilities. One is the Canon T4i DSLR, and the other is the small-and-powerful Olympus E-PL5 mirrorless model that will accept a bunch of vintage glass by using an inexpensive adapter.
Harig’s YouTube channel is a great source of videos on cameras and photo gear for photographers who don’t want to break the bank. So be sure to take a look, especially when you’re shopping for a deal.