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Buying used camera equipment online? Read these 5 tips first

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It’s safe to say that buying used camera equipment online often gets a bad rep. Most photographers are skeptical due to the potential risks they face. Although these are valid concerns, keeping up with every product release can be both daunting and pricey. There are many factors to consider before committing to buy, and the team at are sharing our top tips to help you along the way!


Before buying a used camera or lens, it’s important to ask yourself what it is you like to shoot, why you’re shooting and how you plan to use the camera. Once you have that information, do plenty of research. Have a look at the product photos for damage, shutter counts, condition rating and pricing. Does it meet your expectations? The best way to ensure that you are paying true market value is to compare against reputable companies that specialize in second-hand camera equipment. Traditional peer-to-peer marketplaces tend to have skewed pricing, that can end up costing you a fortune! Read the fine print and check that a warranty is included, to avoid losing money in the case of any problems with the equipment in the future.

Be conscious of fraud:

There have been plenty of situations where sellers have scammed photographers with false advertisement and sketchy payment methods. Before checkout, make sure the site you are using has a trusted payment gateway like Braintree or Paypal, and for extra protection, pay with your credit or debit card instead of cash. Also check for Trustpilot reviews and their Facebook page, as reviews regarding the buying experience can be in depth.

Buy at the right time:

The top of the year is when you can get your best bargains. The supply of secondhand cameras and lenses surge after the holidays because of the increase of unwanted presents being sold.

Trade in:

Trade in any equipment you don’t use when buying to offset the cost. No point in hanging onto equipment unnecessarily when it’s only going to lose value over time. Due to digital technologies improving so fast, cameras depreciate quickly. If you have any camera bodies that are surplus to your needs, part exchanging your equipment at the right time can save you quite a bit of cash.

Test, test and test:

Whether you are switching brands or staying loyal to what you use now, try before you buy. This isn’t always easy as rentals aren’t always available in your area, but don’t let that discourage you. If you are investing in an expensive camera or lens this step is definitely worth doing. Although the image quality might be your ultimate deciding factor, also check to see whether you’re happy with button placement, menu systems and all the features that might be important to you.

There are very few options when it comes to trading, buying and selling used cameras and lenses. MPB was started because photographers and videographers were being underserved. Unlike Ebay, Craigslist or your local camera store, MPB avoid the hassles that come with traditional peer-to-peer marketplaces. We provide a trusted end-to-end customer experience in addition to offering the best prices on the market.