It’s the Christmas season again and I received quite a number of emails from readers who asked me what do I recommend to buy as a Christmas Gift for their photographer friends? Although everyone has different budgets as well as needs, I have decided to compile this list for “general purpose” as well as to be an unofficial guide to what might be the best Christmas Gift for your friends who is interested in photography. The below list is not targeted at any genre of photographers, but on a very generic basis. And the items listed may not be original but from 3rd party manufacturerers. Here we go!
For those with budget SGD $10 & Below.
Accessories seems to be the best choice here as most photographers spent a loads of money on accessories – without even knowing that they had spent so much as these items are usually quite cheap to buy but have to buy often.
I will suggest things like hotshoe covers, lens caps, filter pouch, remote switches, DSLR rain cover, SD/CF Card holders & even battery covers will be nice & thoughtful.
For those with budget SGD $50 & Below.
Well, you have slightly more budget and probably the photographer have been a great pal, for $50, you can pick up things like macro extension tubes, filters, lens pouch, camera straps, spare batteries, lens hood etc. These are “perishables” as filters gets scratched, straps get worn out and hoods gets lost, so these items will be good as gifts too!
For those with budget SGD $100 & Below.
Now, with this money, you have more options naturally. For SGD $100, you can pick up a used lens from a dealer, get a flash, a battery grip, a small camera bag, a tripod ballhead or even a film SLR! Be creative, find out what your friend really need for this budget segment then shop around before committing the purchase.
For those with budget SGD $500 & Below.
This is an interesting category. For SGD $500, there are many many things that is within reach. You can opt for a good tripod with head, a used DSLR, some 3rd party lenses, vintage cameras, a supply load of films, filter sets, a good prosumer point-&-shoot camera, a good backpack or even a photo-editing software! There are a lot more of things that is good & relevant too, my advice again will be to subtlely find out what your friend has in mind before buying. SGD $500 is lots of money these days.
For those with budget SGD $1,000 & Below.
This shall be the “Cap” for this article. For those really well-to-do people who feel like spending a bit more to help boost the ailing economy, at SGD $1,000 buget, you can consider lots of entry level DSLRs (probably for the friend who wish to have a back up body or another leisure camera), many good wide-angle or good zoom lenses are within reach, that top of the line ETTL/iTTL/Macro flash, or those “out-of-reach” vintage cameras at the dealers! There are simply a long list of things that you can buy for your friend at this budget, just make sure what you are buying are also what your friend needs.
Now, what about those people who do not have a budget constraint?
For this group of eilites, I will suggest getting the Canon 1DX or Nikon D3S (Nikon D4 belongs to the next Christmas) coupled with a few lenses like 12-24mm, 24-70mm, 70-200mm all in F2.8 and maybe add a Fisheye or a Tilt-Shifter to the arsenal too.
Merry Christmas 2011 to all my Photographer Friends from Singapore & All over the World!