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What DSLR camera + lens(es) should I buy for close-up product shots to go on Ebay / IG and can also film 4K videos for TikTok?

I have been using my (Samsung S20) mobile phone to take pictures of my items for a store, but I can never get the lighting right, focus or the right colours.
 

Here is an example of what sort of photos I will be taking: https://imgur.com/gallery/aMCKm4e


I plan at expanding largely in about 6-12 months globally and it includes a lot more social media coverage of things like cool / unique posts on Instagram, an Ebay store and also short outside videos for TikTok in order to gain a following.


I am happy to invest in a DSLR camera for it, but I am a total newbie when it comes to this. I know they usually start around £400-ish. My budget is MAX £1,000 but would prefer to get one + the lens at around £600-ish, but flexible paying more if it is worth it.


Main things I want:

-Auto focus

-Can take videos at least at 4K 30fps (60fps would be nice.)

-Auto exposure settings

-Preferably Canon or Nikon


I would also love like a small backdrop + appropriate light that I could use at home to film small items like this, so feel free to provide any suggestions on this.


Many thanks! 🙂

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The big thing you want to make those items look good is a good lighting setup. Look up product photography studio setup on google images to get some ideas. Basically you want a white backdrop. Plastic sheets can work well as its flexible to go from flat to horizontal, and let some light through so a flash or light under it can have some back light. Then you want a few big soft lights so there isn't any reflections and lots of light around the product. I have a diy setup like this and can show some examples if you want.

 

The lighting and setup will make a much bigger difference so id get that setup right, then focus on the camera.

 

Camera really won't matter here, basically any lower end dslr would work fine here, Im kinda a canon fan so would probably aim for something like a used 70d or a new t8i/sl3. You can also go mirrorless with a m50 or simmilar. A d3500 would be simmilar from nikon. Also look at the sony options like the a6400/zv-e10/a6000/a6100.

 

4k video is gonna be pretty hard to get for that budget(esp with a studio setup too). Id personally skip 4k here as tiktok is 1080p only, and heavily compressed anyways. Probably just get a canon dslr. I don't think any interchangeable lens camera in that budget can do 4k 60, and most of the ones in that budget will have some limits in 4k30, like cropping, overheating, and time limits. The sony cameras like the zv-e10, a6400 and a6100 are probably the best for 4k on a limited budget.

 

 

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31 minutes ago, Electronics Wizardy said:

The big thing you want to make those items look good is a good lighting setup. Look up product photography studio setup on google images to get some ideas. Basically you want a white backdrop. Plastic sheets can work well as its flexible to go from flat to horizontal, and let some light through so a flash or light under it can have some back light. Then you want a few big soft lights so there isn't any reflections and lots of light around the product. I have a diy setup like this and can show some examples if you want.

 

The lighting and setup will make a much bigger difference so id get that setup right, then focus on the camera.

 

Camera really won't matter here, basically any lower end dslr would work fine here, Im kinda a canon fan so would probably aim for something like a used 70d or a new t8i/sl3. You can also go mirrorless with a m50 or simmilar. A d3500 would be simmilar from nikon. Also look at the sony options like the a6400/zv-e10/a6000/a6100.

 

4k video is gonna be pretty hard to get for that budget(esp with a studio setup too). Id personally skip 4k here as tiktok is 1080p only, and heavily compressed anyways. Probably just get a canon dslr. I don't think any interchangeable lens camera in that budget can do 4k 60, and most of the ones in that budget will have some limits in 4k30, like cropping, overheating, and time limits. The sony cameras like the zv-e10, a6400 and a6100 are probably the best for 4k on a limited budget.

 

 

Wow, lots of great info. I posted on 2 subreddits that were camera/photography related and received no responses... 

 

Yeah, would love to see your example 😄

 

Cool, I know the 70D has been quite popular for the last few years and a lot of streamers have used it. I kinda also want a Canon camera. What's the main difference between DSLR and Mirrorless?

 

Also, what size lens? - I know 18-55 is like the standard one that comes with most cameras. Do you think that would work well?

 

Ok, so if Tiktok is only 1080p then no point in 4K. What about 1080p 60 fps? 

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25 minutes ago, Actual_Criminal said:

Wow, lots of great info. I posted on 2 subreddits that were camera/photography related and received no responses... 

 

Yeah, would love to see your example 😄

 

Cool, I know the 70D has been quite popular for the last few years and a lot of streamers have used it. I kinda also want a Canon camera. What's the main difference between DSLR and Mirrorless?

 

Also, what size lens? - I know 18-55 is like the standard one that comes with most cameras. Do you think that would work well?

 

Ok, so if Tiktok is only 1080p then no point in 4K. What about 1080p 60 fps? 

DSLRs have a mirror that can direct the light to a viewfinder or to the sensor. MIrrorless cameras all the light will hit the sensor. The exact difference depend on the camera, but a mirrorless is often lighter, smaller, better af(on newer cameras). DSLRs also look to be on the way out, with many manufactures saying then won't make new models of dslrs.

 

the 18-55 should work well for the begining, id use that first, and then get anouther less if you can't get something with the kit lens.

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4K on a budget : Panasonic G7.

Shooting at 4k for 1080p videos has a benefit of the ability to crop, zoom in/out without loosing image quality.

 

From Filming to Editing: Should You Still Be Shooting in 1080?

 

the main difference between dslr and mirrorless issss..... mirror.

dslr cameras use mirror to preview your shot before actually capturing, so you will see true to life preview.

mirrorless when previewing (on the viewfinder) you see what the sensor see (digitally), may not be as accurate in real life.

 

VERSUS] Pilih Mirrorless atau DSLR? – Ardisaz

 

dslr cameras usually bigger and heavier than mirrorless for the space taken by the pentaprism (the mirror) and the mechanical shutter.

the size difference is why most vloggers use mirrorless to shoot on the go without breaking their arm.

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28 minutes ago, SupaKomputa said:

4K on a budget : Panasonic G7.

Shooting at 4k for 1080p videos has a benefit of the ability to crop, zoom in/out without loosing image quality.

 

From Filming to Editing: Should You Still Be Shooting in 1080?

 

the main difference between dslr and mirrorless issss..... mirror.

dslr cameras use mirror to preview your shot before actually capturing, so you will see true to life preview.

mirrorless when previewing (on the viewfinder) you see what the sensor see (digitally), may not be as accurate in real life.

 

VERSUS] Pilih Mirrorless atau DSLR? – Ardisaz

 

dslr cameras usually bigger and heavier than mirrorless for the space taken by the pentaprism (the mirror) and the mechanical shutter.

the size difference is why most vloggers use mirrorless to shoot on the go without breaking their arm.

Hmm, so seems that a mirrorless might actually be better for me. I do plan on taking outside shots with it and would be travelling alot with it, so smaller size is a benefit. 

CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 16-core 5950X

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another thing you should consider is sensor size, there are 3 major sensor sizes, full frame (fully emulate 35mm film size), APS-C (the middle) and Micro 4/3 (the smallest).

http://43rumors.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/03/428px-sensorsizessvg.jpg

bigger sensor meaning more light will be absorbed.

full frame camera usually has a benefit of better low light quality (since it can absorb more light), wider field of view and arguably better bokeh (background blurring).

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 5/21/2022 at 7:54 PM, Actual_Criminal said:

I have been using my (Samsung S20) mobile phone to take pictures of my items for a store, but I can never get the lighting right, focus or the right colours.
 

Here is an example of what sort of photos I will be taking: https://imgur.com/gallery/aMCKm4e


I plan at expanding largely in about 6-12 months globally and it includes a lot more social media coverage of things like cool / unique posts on Instagram, an Ebay store and also short outside videos for TikTok in order to gain a following.


I am happy to invest in a DSLR camera for it, but I am a total newbie when it comes to this. I know they usually start around £400-ish. My budget is MAX £1,000 but would prefer to get one + the lens at around £600-ish, but flexible paying more if it is worth it.


Main things I want:

-Auto focus

-Can take videos at least at 4K 30fps (60fps would be nice.)

-Auto exposure settings

-Preferably Canon or Nikon


I would also love like a small backdrop + appropriate light that I could use at home to film small items like this, so feel free to provide any suggestions on this.


Many thanks! 🙂

You are going to have an extremely difficult time finding a significant increase in quality with a camera and lens in the budget range you’re looking at.  Your best option is probably something like a Canon M50 mark2 or something akin to that.  However if you’re open to it I’d like to suggest a different route. 

You’re talking about a business venture with global expansion, keep using your phone for social media.  Nothing in the sub $1000 range of DSLR plus lenses is going to give you any real bump over a 3 year old phone.  For your product photography look into rental houses in your area or the many national ones.

You can rent top of the line gear for fairly inexpensive amounts(For instance, a quick look at lensprotogo.com, no affiliation or anything, you can get a Canon R6 and a RF 100mm f/2.8 macro lens for $200ish for four days) which will give you outstanding quality and you can get those shots all done during the rental period easy.  Doing it that way until you can swing the money for the high quality gear is probably better than spending almost $1000 for low end gear that you’ll want to replace fairly quickly.  This of course only applies if having extremely high quality images is important for you.  

If thats not something you’re looking into the next step I would say is look for a newer phone, as noted above new camera phones are probably going to be quite a bit better than almost any low cost DSLR with a lens you can get and have the significant advantage of having 2-3 fewer steps from taking the photo to posting/sharing on social media or sales sites. 

 

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