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Author Topic: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses  (Read 3381 times)

EOBeav

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Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« on: June 01, 2012, 02:31:40 PM »
I'm shooting an indoor event later this summer, so I need a fairly fast lens with a longer focal length, something like a 135mm f/2 L.  I can buy one, use it for the event, keep it for awhile and then sell it if need be. I can see a need for this lens after the event, but I could probably get along without it also.  Or, I can just rent it for that time period and then send it back when I'm done.

I'd rather buy it, then sell it. The problem is that I live in a fairly rural area, and the market for specialty lenses like that are fairly small. I'm 3-4 hours away from the nearest big cities. Selling it locally on Craigslist or similar would likely not be a practical option. And, I don't do eBay, nor am I convinced that it would pay off to sign up and learn how to sell it just for this one item.

In my situation, am I better off financially to just rent that glass for ~$65USD for four days? What's the best way to sell a higher-end lens if you don't live near a populated area? Thanks in advance for participating in the discussion.
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Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« on: June 01, 2012, 02:31:40 PM »

Random Orbits

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Re: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« Reply #1 on: June 01, 2012, 05:13:00 PM »
I wouldn't dismiss Ebay so easily.  I tried selling an item (ef-s 17-55) for the first time last month, and it took me about an hour to set up the page.  Assuming you buy it used/refurbished and sell it for the same price, you'd lose about 12% due to Ebay/Paypal fees, which would be covered by a 2-3 week rental.  You could do better on other sites, but at least there is some protection with Ebay.

Mt Spokane Photography

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Re: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« Reply #2 on: June 01, 2012, 06:12:43 PM »
It sounds like rental is the way to go for you.  Buying new and reselling will cost you a lot more.
 
Buying a Canon Refurb might save a little, but resale value is down as well.  http://shop.usa.canon.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product_10051_10051_306913_-1
 
I'd watch for a Canon discount coming up for Fathers Day, they sometimes offer a 15% discount, but inventory clears out in a hour or less.

IIIHobbs

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Re: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« Reply #3 on: June 01, 2012, 07:25:25 PM »
I recently bought a new 135 f2, it is a wonderful lens which I suspect you will use much more often instead of your 70-200 once you have it.
It is a great lens at a very affordable price.
I agree heat buying new with the intent to sell weeks later is not the best choice financially. But I would bet that it will be your 70-200 that you end up selling once you have he 135 f2.

« Last Edit: June 09, 2012, 07:07:14 AM by IIIHobbs »

elflord

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Re: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2012, 09:38:13 PM »
I'm shooting an indoor event later this summer, so I need a fairly fast lens with a longer focal length, something like a 135mm f/2 L.  I can buy one, use it for the event, keep it for awhile and then sell it if need be. I can see a need for this lens after the event, but I could probably get along without it also.  Or, I can just rent it for that time period and then send it back when I'm done.

I'd rather buy it, then sell it. The problem is that I live in a fairly rural area, and the market for specialty lenses like that are fairly small. I'm 3-4 hours away from the nearest big cities. Selling it locally on Craigslist or similar would likely not be a practical option. And, I don't do eBay, nor am I convinced that it would pay off to sign up and learn how to sell it just for this one item.

In my situation, am I better off financially to just rent that glass for ~$65USD for four days? What's the best way to sell a higher-end lens if you don't live near a populated area? Thanks in advance for participating in the discussion.

I've had some success selling/buying on fredmiranda.com. This is not an auction site like ebay, it's a photographers forum that has a large buy/sell section.

However, for what you're doing, I would just rent it. Buying and selling only makes sense if you plan to hold the item for a while. I've used lensrentals.com several times to try items and have been very happy with it.

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Re: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« Reply #5 on: June 02, 2012, 09:39:30 PM »
Check lensrentals.com.  I have used them several times, twice to confirm my desire to purchase a 70-200mm f2.8 MkII and 17-55mm.  I eventually purchased both lenses.  My other rental was the 135 to shoot my granddaughters dance recitle with very low light, no flash allowed (actually the sign in the lobby said no cameras) and I was way in the back.

I was not happy with the results of the 135 mainly because of camera shake (no IS on the 135).  This year I am going to take my new 70-200 MkII and I am actually looking forward to going to a "boring" dance recitle.  You will be very happy with lens rental, great prices, service and they only send top notch equipment.

EOBeav

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Re: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« Reply #6 on: June 02, 2012, 10:07:47 PM »
Thanks for the replies, everybody. Part of the reason I was going to do the buy/sell thing was that I have a stepson who will be playing high school basketball this year, and that seemed like a decent lens for that purpose. So, it's still up in the air, but I'm leaning toward renting for now.
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Re: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« Reply #6 on: June 02, 2012, 10:07:47 PM »

Mt Spokane Photography

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Re: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« Reply #7 on: June 02, 2012, 11:01:36 PM »
Thanks for the replies, everybody. Part of the reason I was going to do the buy/sell thing was that I have a stepson who will be playing high school basketball this year, and that seemed like a decent lens for that purpose. So, it's still up in the air, but I'm leaning toward renting for now.

If you use lensrentals.com, they will give you a coupon worth a minimum rental fee discount if you buy the lens from their recommended dealer. 
 
I really like my 135mmL, and use it whenever I can, but sometimes, its just not the right focal length.

TexPhoto

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Re: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2012, 12:51:46 AM »
I buy and sell from eBay all the time.  I've never had a problem, and many times sell lenses for more than I paid for them.  At worst, after using the lens for a year or 2, I loose about the price of a minimum rental.  Of course there you can get burned, and there is a little skill to it.


papa-razzi

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Re: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2012, 12:59:28 AM »
I have rented the 135 f/2L to shoot volleyball games (on a 7D).  It is wonderful.  A great lens.  I am hoping to be able to buy one before next season starts.

Basketball is another thing entirely.  The action is both far away and close depending upon the end of the court you are on.  Also, with HS, it depends upon how much freedom you have to walk around the gym.  You might be able to get fairly close, and the 135mm on a crop camera might be way too much.  You might also have to be in the stands, and then it would be ok.

For the money, the 85 f/1.8 is a great sports lens.  Quick, accurate focus, very sharp, and a fast lens.

Given what you have said, I would rent.  Lens rentals is excellent.
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Halfrack

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Re: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2012, 01:45:58 AM »
Honestly renting is an easy, know how much you're on the hook for and letting it go.  Getting a 5Dmk3 this way - even though I know I want buy the thing.

Would upgrading your 70-200 to a used non-IS 2.8 be an option?  You'll get a F stop, have a zoom, and can look forward to keeping it around.  Yes, this is a dangerous question..
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EOBeav

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Re: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« Reply #11 on: June 03, 2012, 10:16:20 AM »
Would upgrading your 70-200 to a used non-IS 2.8 be an option?  You'll get a F stop, have a zoom, and can look forward to keeping it around.  Yes, this is a dangerous question..

It's a fantastic idea, and one I hadn't thought up yet. I'd love for it to be an option, but unfortunately it's not right now. It would solve some of my low-light problems in that focal length, without giving up a 70-200 for landscape purposes.
In landscape photography, when you shoot is more important than where.

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jebrady03

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Re: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« Reply #12 on: June 03, 2012, 01:20:21 PM »
To me, I would only consider buying over renting when the rental fees exceed the loss I'd take by buying and reselling.

If you will only benefit from this lens on one occasion, it makes sense to rent.  However, if you're going to use it multiple times and incur multiple rental fees, why not buy?  Even if you break even buying, you still don't have to go through the steps of placing the order, being a little more freaked out than normal about damaging the lens, shipping it back, repeating that process over and over - and that's worth something in my book.  Of course, there's always the "hassle" of selling something too.

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Re: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« Reply #12 on: June 03, 2012, 01:20:21 PM »

KyleSTL

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Re: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« Reply #13 on: June 04, 2012, 01:06:04 PM »
I wouldn't dismiss Ebay so easily.  I tried selling an item (ef-s 17-55) for the first time last month, and it took me about an hour to set up the page.  Assuming you buy it used/refurbished and sell it for the same price, you'd lose about 12% due to Ebay/Paypal fees, which would be covered by a 2-3 week rental.  You could do better on other sites, but at least there is some protection with Ebay.
I would not take this advice.  Reason being is that if you are new to eBay and have no feedback (or very little feedback) you will not get the same selling price as more established and trusted sellers.  My auctions go for good prices because I time the close of the auction well, have excellent feedback (100% and 90 star rating), and have very well lit and detailed photos in the auction.  If it weren't for my good feedback, my auctions would probably close at prices 20-30% lower.
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Razor2012

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Re: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« Reply #14 on: June 04, 2012, 01:19:54 PM »
I wouldn't dismiss Ebay so easily.  I tried selling an item (ef-s 17-55) for the first time last month, and it took me about an hour to set up the page.  Assuming you buy it used/refurbished and sell it for the same price, you'd lose about 12% due to Ebay/Paypal fees, which would be covered by a 2-3 week rental.  You could do better on other sites, but at least there is some protection with Ebay.
I would not take this advice.  Reason being is that if you are new to eBay and have no feedback (or very little feedback) you will not get the same selling price as more established and trusted sellers.  My auctions go for good prices because I time the close of the auction well, have excellent feedback (100% and 90 star rating), and have very well lit and detailed photos in the auction.  If it weren't for my good feedback, my auctions would probably close at prices 20-30% lower.

True, people rely on feedback quite a bit.  I've bought and sold hundreds of items on eBay and people are more likely to deal with someone with good feedback rather than someone new or with negative feedback.  A person will go alot further on eBay if they have the time and patience to do a good job with their listing.
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Re: Buying/Selling/Renting Lenses
« Reply #14 on: June 04, 2012, 01:19:54 PM »