How to choose the best camera for you.

Are you about to choose your next best friend?…your camera

Please ask yourself these questions to help you identify the best camera for you to purchase.

1.   What are you most attracted to, what do you want to shoot?

2.   Do you/will you have clients?  What camera features best meet your goals or clients needs?

3.   What are the top three most important features you must have with your camera, given you have answered the above questions.

4.   Have you made your selection and ready to feel the passion of your camera and, have the best time of your life?  I have some excellent recommendations below that I have put together to help you get what you want today.

Tim’s Camera...Nikon

I have and have had many cameras through the years.  For medium format my Mamiya 654, I primarily shoot with the Nikon D5 DSLR, and my older D2X.  Why I use Nikon… I really appreciate Nikon’s mindfulness to its consumer.  They keep it real user- friendly with the transitions of updated and improved features.  I always feel that I can easily find my way around with each upgrade.   As a pro-photographer who began shooting with film, I also loved how they made sure their new era of digital cameras could adapt with the lenses from our film cameras.  Example: The lenses I used for my wonderful Nikon F100 35mm film camera, were transferable to use with Nikon’s first digital D2H, (which was my first digital camera).

Check out the cameras Highlight Comparisons below, and click on the links from B&H Photo on Tim!

Camera Body of choice: Nikon D5 DSLR

  • 20.8MP FX-Format CMOS Sensor
  • EXPEED 5 Image Processor
  • 3.2" 2.36m-Dot Touchscreen LCD Monitor
  • 4K UHD Video Recording at 30 fps
  • Multi-CAM 20K 153-Point AF System
  • Native ISO 102400, Extend to ISO 3280000
  • 12 fps Shooting for 200 Shots with AE/AF
  • 180k-Pixel RGB Sensor and Group Area AF
  • 14-Bit Raw Files and 12-Bit Raw S Format
  • 1000 Base-T Gigabit Wired LAN Support

NikOn’s D5 equivalent: Canon EOS-1D X Mark II

The canon EOS-1D X Mark II is Canon's equivalent to the Nikon D5.  Though I do not shoot with Canon, I do have colleagues who are happy with it.  Should you be fixed on working with Canon, here is your best choice.


  • 20.2MP Full-Frame CMOS Sensor
  • Dual DIGIC 6+ Image Processors
  • 3.2" 1.62m-Dot Touchscreen LCD Monitor
  • DCI 4K Video at 60 fps, 8.8MP Still Grab
  • 61-Point High Density Reticular AF II
  • Native ISO 51200, Expanded to ISO 409600
  • 14 fps Shooting, 16 fps in Live View
  • Dual Pixel CMOS AF and Movie Servo AF
  • Built-In GPS, CFast & CF Card Slots

Medium format: Mamiya 645

·  80MP Leaf Credo Digital Back

·  53.7 x 40.3mm DALSA CCD Sensor

·  3.2", 1.15MP Touch Screen LCD

·  Dual-Core Microprocessor

·  Dynamic Range of 12.5 f-stops

·  35-800 ISO Sensitivity

·  1/10,000 - 120 Second Exposure Time

·  FireWire 800 and USB 3.0 Connectivity

·  645DF SLR Medium Format Autofocus DSLR



Mid-range Priced cameras:  Nikon D810

I asked my good friend and colleague Kenyon (physique/athletic photographer of Kenyon Studios, Hollywood) to give me his keen insight about the camera and lenses he favors to shoot with and why.  I asked Kenyon because I wanted to see if our experiences might be the close the same.  Though we use different cameras, we are on spot with the lenses.  I also have a couple additional lenses I like to use as well, depending on on my goals.

The Nikon D810 is my workhorse. At 36MP, and shooting in RAW, I get all the info I need for a great image and plenty of information for any post work I may want to do. My favorite lens is the 70-200mm 2.8. I love this lens...very little compression, amazing low light capability and insane sharpness throughout the zoom range. For "close-up" work my favorite is the 24-70mm 2.8. This lens allows me to get up close and personal and still get enough in my frame for a good shot. Sometimes on location, I am actually holding an off-camera flash or a soft-box when shooting my client and then the 24-70mm is a must. 

  • 36.3MP FX-Format CMOS Sensor
  • EXPEED 4 Image Processor
  • No Optical Low Pass Filter
  • 3.2" 1,229k-Dot LCD Monitor
  • Full HD 1080p Video at 60/30/24 fps
  • Multi-CAM 3500FX 51-Point AF Sensor
  • Native ISO 12800, Extended to ISO 51200
  • 5 fps Shooting at Full Resolution
  • Electronic Front Curtain Shutter
  • 14-Bit RAW Files and 12-Bit RAW S Format

Recommendation for beginners: 

Nikon D7200 or D7100

  • 24.2MP DX-Format CMOS Sensor
  • EXPEED 4 Image Processor
  • No Optical Low-Pass Filter
  • 3.2" 1,229k-Dot LCD Monitor
  • Full HD 1080p Video Recording at 60 fps
  • Multi-CAM 3500 II DX 51-Point AF Sensor
  • Native ISO 25600, B&W to ISO 102400
  • 6 fps Shooting for Up to 100 Frames
  • Built-In Wi-Fi Connectivity with NFC
  • In-Camera Time Lapse, Up to 9,999 Frames

Other excellent cameras to consider:  Hasselblad and Leica

I tend to like lightweight and on trend bags for packing my gear so Peak Designs is my go-to BAG of choice for functionality & design!

If you are attending one of Tim’s workshopS be sure to order this today!


Also, a B+W UV lens filter for outdoor use and/or lens protection