Over the last 6 years, this page has served millions of photographers with tips on the best photography gear available. I feel like helping everyone find inexpensive, high quality photography gear is one of the most important parts of what I do.

I've spent tens of thousands of dollars in gear over the last few years so I can test as much gear as possible, and the best stuff is recommended here.

I hope you find this recommended gear section helpful, and I hope to save you a buck too.



Jim Harmer
Founder, ImprovePhotography.com

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  1. Hey gang!

    Been listening to IP since the Dusty-O era.

    You’ve been a major factor in my photography adventures.
    Which are daily because I shoot, think, process, live, do and do not do photography.
    What is singular with IP is your attitude or if you prefer your approach to INCLUDE all; from beginning shooters, intermediate shooters and perhaps pros. – I want to believe pros don’t know all/everything about photography and are most definitely part of your audience.

    Anyway, my photography grew up with the podcast. You’ve been with me the whole time. I’ve been listening the whole time.
    Tips, tricks, doodads, interviews, perspectives, opinions, tests, recommended gear, recommended attitudes, positivism etc. The list is long.

    Helpful you were, of course.

    I’ve learned how to do the best shoot with the gear I could afford. Like I said, I grew with the podcast and by ricochet with you guys.
    You, like myself, love gear but the emphasis was never put on the gear itself (somewhat…). I loved that very much.

    I cannot say I’m the best photographer out there but I feel more confident in what I do and with my vision.
    I dare more, I keep repeating my success and I try to understand the source of my mistakes.

    For now I wanted to thank you for everything you’ve done so far. IP and the other podcasts are still part of my daily commute. I take handwritten notes whenever I listen to the podcasts.

    I don’t know if my train of thoughts were making sense but I don’t care… I’m sure you dig what I wanted to say/convey.

    Thanks again.

    Mario Pierre (Pee-hair)
    aka Warioda

  2. have you tried the Shanny flash sn600sn? what triggers work with it?

  3. Recommended dslr for beginners 2016?
    -Canon or nikon?
    And good camera lenses?

  4. FYI Broken link on your website

    I’m on a mobile device
    From gear page –> backup

    Page not found =(

    Love the pod cast and IP

  5. Hello Jim and company , I just found this site and think it’s really wonderful. I’m not sure this is the best place on this mega site to pose this question, but here goes: I am considering Adobe’s Creative Cloud that gives the subscriber both Photoshop and Lightroom for $9.95/month. There are a few other add-ins too. I don’t really like the idea of “renting” software–especially where my images will be stored on their cloud. The only reason I am considering this is because I need the latest versions of both applications and understand that they can’t be purchased any longer as stand-alone products, but rather the customer must “rent” it.

    1. Does anyone have experience with Creative Cloud and is it a secure thing? Any losses of photographs?
    2. If it is possible to actually purchase Ps and Lr, I would be grateful to know where.

    Thank you!


    1. Author

      @Kevin – Almost all of us pro photographers are using the creative cloud now. It’s the only way to get Photoshop going forward, and likely will be the same with Lightroom at some point. So far it’s been great, and well worth $10 per month.

      1. Jim, thanks for answering my question. I’ll get on with Adobe CC. I appreciate your time. Kevin

      2. what is the creative cloud? I tried to click your link on recommend photo editing software but the link does not go anywhere, thank you!

  6. P.S. When I press the Photo Editing Software hyperlink above, it does not go anywhere. I’ve tried other buttons and they work; this one doesn’t. Any ideas? Thanks.

  7. Hi Jim, you recommended a website that kept passwords safe in a podcast awhile back, I was driving, and unable to jot it down. Can you tell us again?


  8. Mr. Harmer,
    I’ve just begun studying flash photography, I bought most of the items (just arrived) in your beginning flash photography recommendations, now that I have those I’m looking at a backdrop and stand, do you have recommendations for those? There are hundreds of brands out there and so many mixed reviews regardless of price. I’m just not sure what to believe or buy, so I’m reaching out to someone with experience. Some say stands are too flimsy, bolts strip, parts stick, etc. I’m looking for some quality that won’t break the bank. The information you provide is outstanding, thanks very much for creating this site.

  9. Link to Recommendations-Photo Editing Software is broken. While at it, why don’t you update some of the other recommendations as they are old now.

  10. Hi Jim. I recently enjoyed your podcast where you talked about using an iPad Pro while on the road. I have had an iPad Pro since it first came out in 2015. I also own an iPhone 7+ I am a PC user at home. I do not own any other Apple products. I love the portability of my iPad Pro and I think that I make good use of it while traveling. Here’s my method: I shoot an Olympus OMD-EM5ii and an Olympus OMD-EM10. After a day of shooting, or even while shooting I will go to the wifi connection on the iPad Pro and locate the camera after turning on the wifi module in the camera. After connecting I will go to the Olympus app on the iPad Pro (OI Share) and select import. Like magic all of my photos from my Olympus Camera will appear. Then I just select the ones that I want to use now. The selected jpegs will appear in my Camera Roll. Next I go to Google/Nik Snapseed to edit and save my keepers. Now, these photos are ready for the net (Facebook,Instagram, etc.). The only downside is that these are Jpegs, not Raw. I always shoot a Raw + jpeg. When I return home I download my RAW versions for other uses than the web.

  11. I’m in the market for a new computer. The toshiba laptop is on it’s last legs. I want a mac this time. My experience with this laptop is the angle of the screen influences how bright/light the image looks during editing. Is it still the case, should I consider a mac laptop or go with a desktop where the angle of the screen is fixed?

  12. I and a beginner with a 5D mark II and need some immediate advise. I volunteered to do some photography for a charity event and am having problems with action shots. Can’t seem to beat the blur. It will be indoor with plenty of light(I hope) and outside at dawn( should be perfect). Can you tell me how to set up my camera to beat the blur?

  13. HYY Jim, I am an ardent reader of most of your articles on Improved Photography. I want to go into Photography as a Pro. Although for now I don’t have much. Can you please tell me something about Nikon D7100 ? Thanks for those articles, you really use simple tenses that one can easily understand.

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