So I managed to get the 16-35mm and I got it for $835. That saved quite a bit of money!
This leaves ~$4,350 for the other things I was looking at.
Velbon makes some nice affordable tripods and monopods. And I agree fully with RickSpringfield that you should try them in a shop, see what you like etc.
The Sony RX100 has some great reviews as has the RX1. Some people here also talk none stop about the new Fujis such as the X100s and X-Pro2. I really like the look of the RX1.
As for a new camera, unless you have loads of cash, why not keep hold of the 7D and enjoy that for a couple more years. I try to make any tech I buy last 5 years or so. You still get great pics from your 7D and there will always be something better so why not hold off on that purchase.
Sell my 7D? Never. It's fantastic for shooting horse shows because of the crop factor and the FPS. But with portraits and landscapes it can start to fall behind. Maybe someday, when I can afford to upgrade to 1D, but not any time soon. I managed to save up $5,200 so that's what we're working with here.
I really am not sure where in my reply to you, you think I suggested you sell your 7D.
Regardless, you really should wait before buying a 5D Mark III to see if Canon are going to release a 7D Mark II and when. Could be a very interesting camera if they do.
You said "keep hold of your 7D" so I thought you thought I was going to sell mine!
I'm not really interested in a 7D Mark II to be honest. I want a full frame.
I'd esp. advise a good tripod *head* that allows for smooth movement even if the camera is held stable - in my case that was more expensive than the actual tripod. And you probably should get some advice on what system to use if you didn't decided it yet (I'm using Arca Swiss, but it's rather uncommon in Germany). As for the tripod legs, do you need max. stability for extra long exposures or just a sturdy version that you still can carry yourself w/o a golf cart?
I need something light but I also want stability. http://www.amazon.com/SIRUI-Ballhead-Quick-Release-Capacity/dp/B00317UGY4/ref=sr_1_1?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1358706194&sr=1-1&keywords=SIRUI+G-20+36mm+Ballhead
This is my current ballhead. It's been pretty secure. My tripod though--an off brand that I got for cheap at good will but looked
sturdy ended up having the joints in the legs snap from repeated folding up and traveling. I guess I should be glad I only lost $10 on that purchase? I don't know what it cost new.
The tricky thing is, I don't want to spend a thousand dollars on a tripod + head combo. Maybe someday I'll get arca swiss and really right stuff heads but right now I'm still building up a camera set-up and my biggest lens is 70-200mm. I'm not very efficient with a tripod yet so I want to practice and really figure out what I'm doing with it to know what I want out of it. There's some creative stuff you can do with tripods and horses as well as tripods and landscapes.
You Americans should really appreciate having a working craiglist btw, in Germany there are many smaller different sites but nowhere photog gear is to be found, that's why I just bought a *new* 17-40L (with Canon rebate) because the ebay prices were 85+% of the new lens...
Ebay can be ridiculous sometimes and that's why I try to sell my gear on craigslist. Ebay charges like 15% sales commission and when I'm selling something that's worth a thousand bucks that really hurts me. I can charge less than I charge on ebay and make more money on craigslist. I totally appreciate it.
But seems to pay, so watch out for envious photogs crossing the street :-p
Haha, it does and it doesn't. Part of the money I saved up came from an INSANELY lucky find I had at Goodwill. I found a designer purse for $4. Looked it up on ebay and the thing was going for over a grand. Needless to say I sold it. Horse photography is rarely a well paying venue unless you are one of the pros paid to do the big shows. Summer and Winter are off seasons while Spring and Fall are the on seasons. During the spring show season I can make quite a bit of money selling prints, but I'm not making a livable salary or anything. This is just a hobby and most of the money goes either to the hobby itself or to buying horsey things for myself at shows.
It involves waking up at 4AM and driving an hour to a show, being on my feet all day and then getting home around 9pm.
Throwing a wild card into the mix, if you are keeping your 7D and don't need the super top flight AF options of the 5DIII, why not look at the 6D, which is great in bad light, offers as good a picture quality as the 5DIII (I'll not get into the tables and charts over which is best), leaving a considerable amount to buy the 16-35, 24-70, tripod and compacts, but also grab the 135mm f2.0 L which will give you some low light reach into an indoor event arena, adding a 1.4x extender for a tad more reach, or alternatively enable you to put some cash aside for the 70-200 2.8 IS MkII six month down the line.
The 6D was super tempting but the focus system just doesn't do it for me. The 5D3's is much more responsive when it comes to moving objects. While I do portraits and lanscapes and hope to do it more when I have a camera that's better suited for them, many of my shots are candid and of the photojournalist type. I agree the picture quality is pretty much the same. The viewfinder, weathersealing + autofocus system makes it a dealbreaker for me though and I say that after using it myself and comparing it.
I've been drooling over the 135mm for awhile now and your recommendation makes trying to avoid it even harder! It may be the perfect stopgap between now and me saving up to replace my 70-200 with the f/2.8 version.
Now you're making me re-think which lenses to go with