Smartphone camerasaside, great digital cameras can dig a deep hole in your wallet. You can attribute the high prices to the high production costs involved such as manufacturing and optic testing costs.
However, you can get hot camera deals if you know exactly when and what to purchase.
In here, I’d like to provide my thoughts on the best time of year to buy a camera.
3 Things to Keep in Mind Regarding Cameras
There are a few things that you need to know that’ll help you understand when to buy photography-related equipment.
For cameras above $1,000 there aren’t really seasonal sales. It’ll go on sale whenever the company is planning another model, or sales are down.
(Say January or February.)
As a rule, the season for selling photography equipment is during warm sunny times (when it is in demand) and right before the holidays (when it can be a gift).
While you do get pretty good deals before Thanksgiving/Christmas, in the summer you only might to find a good deal during Amazon’s Prime Days in July.
You also should consider the times when the new camera models are about to get released, because then you can get great deals on the previous camera models.
This being said…
Based on this info, you can keep in mind approximately when it is the best time to start considering to buy a new DSLR/mirrorless camera.
What Is the Best Time of Year to Buy a Camera?
Many people will argue that the best time to purchase a camera is the period between November and January.
The times vary with the manufacturer, though.
Every January, you might have to look out for theConsumer Electronics Show. The retail prices at this time are at their lowest. If you happen to miss out, look out for deals from November to December, especially Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
Sometimes the deals at this time are slightly worse than those of January but you can purchase a camera at a reasonably good price.
In my personal experience…
Digital World Beauty readers shopped the most on Amazon in the months of:
However, reliable deals can also be found all year round.
If you are keen enough, announcements on promotions and discounts will definitely not pass you. Some camera specializing companies like Adorama and B&H Photo Video usually make announcements about their deals.
Others, such as Amazon and Best Buy, also do.
(Amazon is not so open about their deals but do keep an eye on Black Friday and July Prime Day deals.)
During the Consumer Electronics show, you might hear announcements on some new models after which they get released in a few months.
So, if you’re lucky enough, you may also get good deals on new arrivals in April and May.
What Is the Best Place Online to Buy a Camera?
I don’t know how about you, but a lot of purchases (photography-related too) I make online, mainly, through Amazon.
Camera prices range between $150 and thousands of dollars.
In most cases, the cheaper the camera, the lower the quality of its images and the higher the limitation. Again, this draws you back to carefully examining your needs.
If you need high quality images and high-end features, then you might want to plan your budget much earlier.
(Compact cameras, for example, are usually much cheaper than DSLRs.)
Cameras can either be classified under DSLRs, compact, mirrorless and interchangeable lens cameras.
DSLRs produce better quality images, are bigger in size, have bigger sensors, more effective lenses, and better processors than those of compact cameras.
Compact cameras are smaller and portable.
Mirrorless and interchangeable lens cameras have features of both DSLRs and compact cameras.
Chance of future upgrades:
Photography experts need to consider upgrade ability of accessories such as lenses, flashes, filters and other important camera parts.
Such cameras are very expensive to entirely replace.
If you take pictures just for fun, you don’t need to think about upgrading your cameras. Since they cost as low as $150-200, you can just buy a better one for a slightly higher amount.
If you use a camera from Nikon and you liked it, you will probably buy a newer and better version from the same brand.
Are Camera Bundles Worth It?
A camera bundle includes the camera itself and the photography accessories.
These may include a camera, lenses, a camera bag, memory cards, tripods and batteries.
Regardless of the consumer needs, if you’re planning to use every accessory, camera bundles are worth investing in because they save money. Your needs are still important because they determine camera bundle you get.
Test the whole camera bundle before purchasing it and seek recommendation of camera enthusiasts.
But as a rule, camera bundles are often great.
Especially for beginner photographers who are not very sure what they need to get.
Best Time of Year to Buy a Camera: Final Thoughts
When is the best time of year to purchase a DLSR or mirrorless camera?
This depends on the model and also consumer needs.
If you are a hobbyist or an expert who doesn’t mind using a previous model, the best times for your purchase are after/before the holidays.
(Specifically January-February and September-October.)
If you just want the latest camera options, your best times are likely 6 months later after the camera release.
(Often you can find good camera deals in April, May and after Christmas.)
Social media lovers can get reliable deals in March, April, September, and between Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Earlier I mentioned good websites to get used gear, or how to get a good deal on new gear, take advantage of those links!
Now, I’d like to hear from YOU:
What is the best time of year to buy a camera in YOUR opinion? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!