What to Look for When Buying a Secondhand Camera

What to Look for When Buying a Secondhand Camera

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What should you look for when buying a secondhand camera?

  1. History
  2. Exterior condition
  3. Working capabilities
  4. Lens mount
  5. Lenses
  6. Accessories


A secondhand camera is ideal for those who are looking to get into photography or videography for the first time. Purchasing a camera from an auction in the Philippines can also better fit your budget as compared to buying a brand new one. The crucial part is carefully examining the camera to make sure that it is still good for use. Here is a list of factors to look at when buying a secondhand camera.


History of Its Use from Owner

History of Its Use from Owner

The condition of a camera will greatly depend on its owner. There is a larger chance that the camera body and lenses are more worn out if the owner is a photographer or videographer for a living. This could also be the case for cameras that are used by families, as the item can be damaged from constant use.

Make sure to ask the owner if they have done any renovations on the camera so you can inspect it properly. It is better if the owner is honest with you regarding their use of the camera to ensure that you are getting the most out of your money’s worth. If you are buying the camera from an auction, similar to those who buy and sell cars, you may ask the auctioneer for more information regarding the item.


Physical Exterior Condition

Carefully inspect the camera body and camera lenses for any sign of physical damage. This can include scratches, cracks, or dents. Check how deep the damage goes, as this could be a cause of more severe issues on the inside of the camera. Check the functions of the camera’s different parts to ensure that they are working properly. Click the buttons and spin the wheels found around the body. Check that these are working well. If there is a pop-up flash, check if it still pops up properly.

Make sure to check the connections of the camera as well. Problems in terms of plug-ins are harder to spot than buttons because the issues are not visible. Make sure to try the HDMI plug, memory card reader, and microphone jack to ensure that they still work well. It is also imperative that the battery and its charger work properly, check if the charger lights up green if it is fully charged or red while it is still charging. 


Working Capabilities

Working Capabilities

Besides the physical attributes of the camera, it is important to check its working capabilities. Check the LCD screen to see if it is working properly. Note if there are signs of damage such as scratches or cracks as well as dead pixels. Check the camera’s live view option as well, it should be able to give you a clear image of your surroundings. The viewfinder is also important to check for any cracks or dust.

Check the camera’s aperture, exposure, and shutter speed to ensure that it is working. Test out different combinations and observe their results.


Lens Mount

A lens mount is crucial in any camera. This ensures the safety of the lens attached as well as the clarity of your product. Make sure to check the interior of the lens mount for any scratches or cracks. The most important part to check is its mirror box. It should be clean and free from dirt, scratches, or any stains.

Try to take a sample picture with the camera to spot any dead pixels. If there are any, then the product is damaged and should not be bought. Check to see if the shutter is working well. It is important the shutter makes a sound when you take a picture. Try to also plug in your memory card and check if the camera captures crystal clear image and video.




A camera will come with a camera body and lens. It is important to check the quality of the lens that is being sold. If you are offered multiple lenses, carefully inspect each one for any signs of damage. Check the autofocus feature of the lens. Make sure that it can adjust to the subject that you choose accordingly. For manual focus, check if the lens adjusts smoothly. Any sign of rigidity or roughness may be a sign of damage.



Just like when you buy and sell cars, it is important to lay all the cards on the table. Be open about any damages or renovations that the item acquired. In terms of secondhand cameras, it is important to be aware of all the accessories that come with the camera itself. Do your research well in order to see if the accessory fits the camera model. These can include cables, memory cards, or straps.


Key Takeaway

It is key to carefully inspect any item that you may get from an auction in the Philippines. This is to ensure that you are getting a good deal from a reliable source. Do your research well on the different places that sell secondhand cameras to find the best one for you.