In part 2, I dig in to the gear I purchased: camera body, lenses, and a few recommended accessories. (A complete list can be found here: )
Gear I purchased:
Camera body: Canon 70D, crop sensor $999
Lenses: I chose to buy two prime lenses one for close-up work – details and filming videos, and another for wider angle work.
Lens 1: 40MM/f2.8 EF STM (effective focal length of 64MM) $179 STM stands for Stepper Motor which has been designed for nearly silent autofocusing when recording video. This one came with a hood, a UV filter and a lens cleaning supply kit too.
Lens 2: 24MM/f2.8 EF-S STM (effective focal length of 38MM) $149 The ’S’ designation stands for “small image circle”. Crop sensor cameras allow the optical elements to protrude further into the camera body, which allows for some very wide angle lenses and enables them to be made smaller, lighter (containing less glass), faster (larger aperture) for less money.
A wider angle option: if you have a slightly larger budget is the Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM, $649. Be aware this is a manual focus lens and the max. aperture changes as you zoom. Effective focal length of 16 – 35MM
(You can always rent lenses too; try before you buy.)
32GB SD card, Class 10 80MB/sec capture (for video) – $12
Tripod – Ravelli APGL2, $65 with adjustable pistol grip, extends to 70” tall. Check/tighten all the screws when this arrives. There are better tripods out there certainly, but this is an excellent starting point.
External Microphone – Rode VideoMicPro shotgun mic $199on board mic is poor. This is only necessary if you plan to shoot video.
Extra batteries – comes with one battery and a charger
Lightroom + Photoshop – $10/month via Adobe Creative Cloud subscription. Post-production helps correct lens aberrations, keystoning fixes, vertical/horizontal adjustments, white balance tuning, etc.
Please watch: “5 Things Under $20 Every ARCHITECT Needs”