Cheap Camera Test - Part Two
Using the cheap D300 and 50mm combo bought for £100 on Facebook Marketplace, I bought another used lens (a Sigma 105mm Macro) to see if I could further develop the results from the previous test. Again, this would be used in conjunction with a single Godox RS600 portable-head with no modifier.
So, do you need expensive equipment to shoot vehicles successfully?
The 105mm does provide a much more impressive result, giving a much sharper image and compressing the distance in a way the 50mm is not capable of.
As usual, a quick mock-up in Forza Horizon 4 before the shoot helped to determine which angles would suit the car most. Scouting the location first on Google Earth also gave some indication as to what backdrops we would have access to nearby.
Some light-painting from an elevated position gave away the first issue with the equipment - the lack of versatility from not having a zoom lens on-hand. A 24-70 like the one I would typically use would have been perfect here.
Not wishing to lose the shot entirely, I gave my phone a chance. Using 'light-painting' mode on the Huawei P20 Pro yielded this image. Far from perfect, but better than not getting it at all!
Conclusion: While there are working limitations to using 'cheap' equipment, the results that you can get with less than £500 worth of total equipment aren't to be ignored! If you're aware of your limitations on-location then it's still a formidable setup that will provide you with print-ready results without too much bother. In good light you could do without the studio head and be providing a service to people with only an initial £100 outlay.