« on: October 10, 2014, 05:19:56 PM »
Enthusiasm and tech are not synonymous, my experience over the last 30+ years of serious photography has been that enthusiasm trumps pretty much everything, sure there will always be images that are just not possible without the latest or greatest, but from what I have seen, none of us, including myself, are shooting them.
That's probably right. But in my experience it's not really either/or: better equipment, up to a point (doesn't have to be "latest or greatest" - the original question simply referred to equipment that was better than you started with), boosts enthusiasm by making the learning process easier and more enjoyable. Those who have said that experience/learning/technique/an artistic eye matter most have a point, obviously, but it's easier to achieve those things when you're not hampered by, say, inferior focusing mechanisms (too few focus points, inconsistent/inaccurate AF lenses, design that effectively makes MF near-impossible, etc.), bad ergonomics (esp. burying important controls in intimidatingly complex menus) and so on, and when the resulting images look inherently better (less noise etc.).
("Better" is relative anyway and needn't be expensive. There was no such option when I bought my first dslr, but for my purposes, miles "better" than the Nikon dslr I started out with would have been a good mirrorless body with a few old MF lenses and perhaps a couple of good modern AF lenses - it's easier to learn what the controls do if they're easily accessible and you can see their effect as you look through the viewfinder, and incomparably easier to MF when magnification and focus peaking show up there as well - for me, at any rate.)