The GEAR | 2017 Edition

Hi everyone,

I have been asked if I could talk about some of the gear I use and why I use that particular gear.  I use and have used different brands of cameras over my 17 years of photography.  My first camera was a Minolta SRT 202 film camera and I freaking loved it!  I then went to digital and purchased the Nikon D40 which was announced in 2005.  I purchased this camera for the only reason that it came with two lens and was cheaper than the other brands.  Over the next few years I upgrade my gear according my needs in my photography growth.


  • Nikon D500
    NIKON D500 | RELEASED 2016

    The Nikon D500 is my main camera.  This is the beast that carries all the weight and all the responsibility for capturing the shot.  This camera is great and the low light performance is undeniably awesome.  I took pictures at 10,000 ISO and still had usable results.  This camera also does 10FPS which helps me in my nature work which was an added plus to me purchasing it.  The build quality is superb and feels very sturdy in the hands.  It is the little brother to the Nikon D5 so that should give you an idea on the build quality of this camera.

  • Canon 7D
    CANON 7D | RELEASED 2009

    The Canon is my secondary/back up camera.  I purchased this at a pawn shop in great condition for a little over $300.00.  I had been searching for a secondary camera for a while but did not want to buy a brand new camera.  I honestly did not have the money to get a brand new one, I just spent my tax return on the Nikon D500!  I went to several pawn shops and accidentally came across one selling a great used Canon 7D.  I could tell this camera was used by a photographer because it was beautifully taken care of.  It came with a bag, lens caps, cards, triggers, CD’s and strap.  The lens had already been sold by the pawn shop so I got it without the lens.  The camera works great and it even came with a battery grip.  It was a great find and I am glad I got it.

  • Fujifilm X30

    The Fujifilm is my little carry around camera.  This camera is really small and I can put it in my bag.  It gives me RAW options plus full manual controls.  The digital viewfinder is a little weird because you can get false grain sometimes when in reality there is no grain in the shot.  It depends on the ISO you are setting it at.  The camera is unique in its design because the ring around the lens is not for Fstop adjustment but for the ISO adjustment.  I really enjoy this little camera and would recommend it to anyone.  It is a bit of a learning curve when using it but once you get used to it you are golden.

  • Canon t4i
    CANON T4i | RELEASED 2012

    The canon T4i was given to me by one of my friends and  I use it a lot.  I don’t care to go into the story here but I will say she was awesome, kind and sweet.  I use this camera to always remember her and take pictures for her and give me that feeling like she is with me taking them also.   It is a great little camera. 🙂


  • Nikon 35mm F1.8
  • Nikon 50mm F1.8
  • Canon 50mm F1.8
  • Canon 70-300mm F4/F5.6

You can probably tell that I am not set on one brand of camera or manufacturer.  I have used both Nikon and Canon and I love them both.  I do see some subtle differences between the image quality but nothing that would make a dent in the final results.  The gear to me is important to an extent.  I know there is a lot of people who say the gear does not matter and that is true to a point.  There are certain projects, clients or photographic jobs that require a higher end gear set.  This is true in really any job you do.  Now don’t get me wrong, I do agree when starting off in photography you should work with your skill level and the gear required for that skill level.  I have slowly worked my gear up to better cameras to fit my growth in photography.  I did not go out and buy the most expensive DSLR when I was starting out.   I had no reason for that high level of gear or need for it.  I have always updated my gear according to the kind of work I was doing or starting to do.  When I was hired for a job I would push the camera to its limit.  When that camera could not go any further I would upgrade.

I shot weddings using a Nikon D40 for several years, but then over time I needed a better quality camera to help with demand and requests from my clients.  The Nikon D40 just could not cut it anymore.  I then upgrade to the Nikon D5100 and loved the camera.  I used that for about 3 years than upgrade to the D7100.  I used that camera for several years then upgraded to the Nikon D500.











Some other gear I have:


I have grown in my photography so my gear has grown with me.  I hope to continue to grow as a photographer with learning, practice and continued drive.  I have several projects I want to work on this year and I am excited about that.  My gear really does reflect my growth as a photographer.  I would not buy gear if I didn’t need it or use it.  It is important to purchase what you need at the time not what you might want.

Thanks for reading.

Christopher Oneil

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