HomeBest Electronics Best Digital CamerasShould You Buy a Used Digital Camera?

Should You Buy a Used Digital Camera?

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Updated November 15, 2021

The question of whether you should buy used cameras or not is deeply personal. The sticker price of a new camera can be a massive shock to amateur photographers and hobbyists especially for the top-rated cameras. Pre-owned items should always be an option, especially with how expensive new cameras can be.


  • While a used camera will not come with a manufacturer warranty, you can always choose a third-party warranty instead to protect your investment.
  • Amateur photographers and hobbyists should almost always go with buying used to avoid the high original price of new digital cameras.
  • You should go to as many different sources as possible to find the right used camera for you, including consignment stores.

Should You Buy a Used Digital Camera?

So, should you buy used or not? There are a few questions to ask yourself and some things to take into consideration. Doing our due diligence means researching the camera model itself, checking it over thoroughly, and comparing the price with what a new model would cost.

Insider Tip

Cosmetic damage can also be a turn-off but might not necessarily be a deal-breaker.

Deciding on a New or Used Camera

The decision between buying new or used comes down to weighing the pros and cons. There are always benefits to buying used, but you should also seriously consider what could go wrong. For example, if the seller doesn’t disclose previous water damage, you might find yourself out a few hundred dollars with nothing to show for it. Cosmetic damage can also be a turn-off but might not necessarily be a deal-breaker.

Benefits of Buying Used

With the average price of a digital camera rising year after year, buying used has never been such an attractive option. Here are some great reasons to buy used:

  • Big-box stores sometimes mark up their prices unnecessarily
  • You’ll save extra money that you can invest in equipment
  • Buying used can be better for your financial situation
  • You can get a third-party warranty for second-hand tech

Drawbacks of Buying Used

So, should you buy a new digital camera? Would your old one just work as well? Of course, there are a few things that might be a deal-breaker for you when buying used. While you’re skipping the upfront cost, you’ll still want to keep these things in mind:

Where to Buy a Used Camera

Most online marketplaces are a great option to peruse for used goods. However, you do have a few different options at your disposal:

  • Facebook Marketplace
  • Yard Sales
  • Thrift Stores
  • Used-Appliance Store
  • Consignment Shops
  • Pawn Shops
  • Garage Sale
  • Estate Sales


The sticker price of a new camera can be a massive shock to amateur photographers and hobbyists, especially for the top-rated cameras.


The marketplace for used appliances is huge, but is it a good idea?

That depends almost entirely on what you need. Your budget and lifestyle will both determine if investing in retail price is worth it or if you should visit a used-appliance store.

Will Your Used Camera Stop Working Once It Reaches Its Life Expectancy?

No, your used camera won’t just stop working. It shouldn’t, at the very least. You’ll start to notice bugs or error messages happening more often, however, as your camera ages past its expectancy.

Will It Save Money in the Long Run?

A high-end digital camera can cost thousands of dollars. You will save money upfront, but it’s questionable whether this will be true in the long run. This is primarily due to the lack of warranty with used cameras and premature wear and tear.

What Is the Life Expectancy of Your Camera?

The life expectancy of your camera will depend significantly on how often it’s used, how well you maintain it, and whether you take precautions when using the camera. The brand can also make a difference.

STAT: Recently, graphics card maker Palit warned that 24/7 GPU mining could reduce a GPU’s performance by around 10% per year. (source)