What constitutes a 'professional' camera?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous Equipment' started by Andy K, Jul 8, 2005.

  1. Andy K

    Andy K Member

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    Sorry if this is the wrong forum, didn't think this topic was volatile enough for the lounge! :wink:

    Ok, I ask the question because I was reading the times and arrangements for an open air Meatloaf concert which my nephew and his mum have gone to this evening. See here.

    One of the T+Cs states: No professional cameras, video recorders or any form of audio-visual recording equipment allowed in the event site.

    Now, I understand the restrictions on sound or video equipment, but at what point is a camera considered a 'professional' camera?
     
  2. Paul Howell

    Paul Howell Member

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    As far as I know, who knows. I consider a professional camera to be any camera used by a professional (who ever that is). Is a bottom end Yachica 124 a professional camera because it uses 120 roll film? A lot of pros use N 90s or F 100 rather than the top of the line F5 or new F6. What about a M4 or M3? Maybe any 35 mm with interchangable lens and big flash?
     
  3. Andy K

    Andy K Member

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    Thats what I figured too. I could lay out on a top end Nikon but hanging around my neck it is just an SLR, hang it around David Bailey's neck and it's a pro camera. I was just wondering what criteria event organisers might use as to what is a 'pro' camera.
     
  4. blansky

    blansky Subscriber

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    I'm sure the idea is that if you had a plastic snapshot camera you'd be fine but anything that can take a picture that is equal to what a pro would do, you would be infringing on their rights to make money off the residuals.


    Michael
     
  5. thedarkroomstudios

    thedarkroomstudios Member

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    I think Paul hit it. I've known some folks who were let in with cameras (sex and what you look like play a role here) only to be harassed by security once they started shooting and "looking like a serious photographer." I'd venture to guess that someone carrying a 20D would be stopped faster than someone carrying a K1000 :smile: Best to leave the 200 2.8 and vertical grip home :D
     
  6. Alex Hawley

    Alex Hawley Member

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    Sounds like someone's very subjective and unspecified definition.
     
  7. Joe Symchyshyn

    Joe Symchyshyn Member

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    And I'm sure the more vague the better for the people to enforce it...

    joe
     
  8. Dave Wooten

    Dave Wooten Subscriber

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    Just dont get caught with your cell phone in plain view!
     
  9. jp80874

    jp80874 Subscriber

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    This is the thinking locally at a restoration village and also the county park. The restoration village (Hale Farm) says you can shoot any camera as long as you don't use a tripod. When I have wandered the park with my 4x5 on a tripod several park rangers have asked if I have gotten the permit for $20 an hour.

    They put that together especially for weddings. If you are making money on their scenery, they want some as well. They have backed off when told that I am taking photo courses at the local college and this is for an assignment. Surprisingly one of the rangers had a son in my class. Once he knew that I could go anywhere I wanted to.

    It is a funny world out there.

    John Powers
     
  10. Gerald Koch

    Gerald Koch Member

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    I think a professional camera is one designed stand up to the rigors of everyday use.
     
  11. Claire Senft

    Claire Senft Member

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    Any camera used in a manner that induces people to pay reasonable or larger fees for a photo is a professional camera in fact. If I were a Diana user and people were willing to pay $1000.00 for a machine made RC print how much more professional could I want my camera to be?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 8, 2005
  12. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Hey, when I was a teenager, Nikon and other camera manufacturers used to have promotional days out at Hale Farm and Village. If I hunt through the old slides, I can probably find some shots I made with an F3 and a 500mm mirror lens that were really the nifty things to have in those days.

    The "professional camera" restriction gets applied arbitrarily to any kind of SLR or any big camera in my experience. That usually means you can get in with a Leica or any small rangefinder without a problem.
     
  13. Lee Shively

    Lee Shively Member

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    "Professional camera" used to mean the photographic equivalent of a hockey puck. It means nothing today.
     
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  15. blansky

    blansky Subscriber

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    Lee, please explain photographic equivalent of a hockey puck. I have photographic equipment and I have hockey pucks but I've never been able to use them, or heard of them in the same sentence before.

    Michael
     
  16. lee

    lee Member

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    I think Lee (great name by the way) has it right.

    I went to an estate sale today because the add in the paper said Professional Camera Equipment. there was an assortment of junk and little else and a lot of Polaroid pieces of which none worked. I may go back Sunday and buy all the 120 nikor reels but that is it. So, any camera can be a professional if someone is willing to call it that. To say I was disappointed does not begin to describe how I felt.

    lee\c
     
  17. Andy K

    Andy K Member

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    I took Lee's analogy to mean a pro camera is like a hockey puck because it'll take a lifetime of being battered but still do what it was designed for?
     
  18. Paul Sorensen

    Paul Sorensen Member

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    I would never want to subject one of my cameras to a Meatloaf concert, and mine would mostly have to be considered professional. (Not behind the camera, mind you, just the cameras themselves:smile:) Perhaps this is a kindness that they are extending to photographers everywhere.

    See, even this seemingly innocuous thread can become volatile! :smile:
     
  19. gareth harper

    gareth harper Inactive

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    One of the T+Cs states: No professional cameras, video recorders or any form of audio-visual recording equipment allowed in the event site.

    Strange statement. Truth is unless you can get access to the pit or the stage or side stage, it's hardly worth bothering. If you are really interested in concert photography check out the smaller venues, you can often snap whoever you want.

    Anyway reminds me of the photographer who was asked to take some snaps for a formula one team at the British Grand Prix. They wanted stuff around the pits etc..
    He had all his big Nikon gear with as usual. But he decided it would be better working with his little Leica rangefinder, and left the cumbersome stuff back at the hotel. He truned up to the circuit, and try as he might he could not get into the pits, the security people thought he was taking the piss (this was before the days of mobiles). So it was back to the hotel, pick up the big bag and hang a Nikon complete with motorwind etc around his neck.
    Guess what suddenly no problem
     
  20. Tom Hoskinson

    Tom Hoskinson Member

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    I have on occasion used "Hockey Puck" to describe non-functioning equipment. In other words, an inert mass.

    A digital camera with a dead battery would be one example. My Beaulieu R16 after the shutter prism quietly self destructed is another.
     
  21. david b

    david b Member

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    Any camera that needs a tripod (at least in Mexico).
     
  22. bjorke

    bjorke Member

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    It's a marketing term. There's no legal requirement for professional-ness in anything. The "daily use" requirement is probably the best one.

    And the Yashica is a good camera, there are a lot of them that have been in regular use since the 70's. Mine, for instance :tongue:
     
  23. BradS

    BradS Subscriber

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    interesting paradox...
    David Burnett has been known to make photos with a Holga. So, I guess a Holga (with appropriate electrical tape in place) is a professional camera.
     
  24. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    I know what you mean Lee, like the Nikon F, a camera you could knock nails in with and still take pictures with afterward.A camera designed to stand up to heavy professional use.
     
  25. John_Brewer

    John_Brewer Member

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    Hmmmm dunno, perhaps a camera that you can drop onto a concrete floor, pick it up and carry on using it. Zenit springs to mind. :tongue:

    Surely there's no such thing as a professional camera. How many cameras make a living? My A level lecturer used his mouth and 110 cartridges as pinhole cameras professionally.
     
  26. Roger Krueger

    Roger Krueger Member

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    It means if the security guard doesn't like you out it goes. Any SLR or TLR is probably a "no", but what the promoter wrote up and what security has actually been briefed on can be very different. A Contax G is a great camera for this kind of definition--a full-on top quality camera that looks a P&S.

    I've been to shows where I've had to tape a lens to my leg to get in (my lenless Zorki in my back pocket looks just like a wallet), but was then able to shoot openly once inside--maybe they thought that since I'd gotten the camera through the door I must have a pass??

    Aww, Meatloaf is tame. Wade into the pit at a punk show sometime... a place I'd ONLY take a professional--or at least hockey puck--camera; cute little plastic things die too easy.