Buyer’s Guide: Recommendations For The Best Photography Equipment, Software, Books, Magazines, DVDs, Online Photo Labs and More

Welcome to my online buying guide for photographers. With over 70 articles it is one of the most comprehensive buyer’s guides on the web.

I get lots of photo questions, and many of them begin with “What is the best . . . .” They usually come from photographers or someone who is shopping for a photographer.

My “best of the best” series recommends the best photo gear, accessories, software, books, DVDs, online photo labs, and a whole lot more. Thanks to the information in these articles I get emails from photographers thanking me for saving them time, frustration, and a lot of money.

This article is published annually in November with regular updates. Most recent update: May 8, 2020.


How To Get The Best Results From The Best Online Photo Labs

How Long Will Your Photo Lab Prints Last Without Fading?


Buy What You Can Afford!

Great Deal? Don’t Get Burned!

Should You Buy “Gray Market” Photo Equipment?

Camera Choices: Using Full Size Test Images from


Gifts for Photographers

Inexpensive Gifts (Starting at $8) for Photographers

Cameras, Lenses, and Lens Calibration

The Best Digital Cameras for 2019 (Including 2010 – 2018)

Get a Quality DSLR and Two Lenses for Less than $400

Choosing an Inexpensive Canon DSLR and Lenses for Video and Still Work

GoPro: Amazing, Small, Inexpensive, HD Video Cameras

The Best Rugged Digital Cameras for Underwater and the Beach

How to Choose the Best iPhone Lenses

The Chinese Lens Rip Off Series – Overpriced Camera Phone Lenses

Get Sharper Images By Using The Best Lens Calibration Tools

Closeup Gear

The Best Closeup Photography Equipment

Tripods, Tripods Heads, and Related Tripod Gear

Tripod Recommendations: The Best of the Best

Tripod Head Recommendations: Some of the Best of the Best

The Very Best Camera Quick Release System

My Favorite Smart Phone Tripod Mounts

Best Panorama Gear: Living In Panorama Heaven

Keeping Your World Straight With A Double Bubble Level

Microphones for DSLRs and Smart Phones

A High Quality, Compact RØDE VideoMic for Your DSLR and Smartphone

How Do You Know If You Have a Fake RØDE VideoMic?

Speedlites, Studio Lights, and Lighting Accessories

“How To” Series: Off-Camera Flash – Twelve articles that introduce you to off-camera flash equipment and how to use it.

Some of the Best Off-Camera Flash Equipment

Radio Controlled Speedlites: Yongnuo YN600EX-RT vs Canon 600EX-RT

AlienBees: High Quality, Economical Studio Lights

Putting Together a “Studio in a Backpack”. Everything you need to take a small, portable portrait studio on the road. And you may have some of the items already.

Light Modifiers (Softeners) for Speedlites

Light Meters

The Best Incident Light Meters

Night Photography

Buying a Headlamp for Night Photography: The Essential Feature

Astrophotography with the iOptron SkyTracker


How To Choose A High Quality Telescope

Wireless Camera Control

Wireless Camera Control and Wireless Photo Transfer with CamRanger – one of the best, most economical ways to get wireless camera control and wireless image transfer in one small package.


The Best Memory Cards for Digital Cameras

The Best Digital Photo Storage


The Best Film and Flatbed Scanners


The Best Insurance for Your Photo Gear (and Photography Business)


My Hard Drive Crashed! Where Do I Send It To Get My Data Back?


The 3-2-1 Photo and Data Backup Plan

The Best Online Backup For Your Photos and Other Important Files


Satellite Communicators: The GPS Messaging Devices That Can Save Your Life


The Best Image Editing Software


All Purpose Photography Books

Some of the Best All Purpose Photography Books

Lighting Book

The Best Book On Photographic Lighting

Exposure Books

Tim Grey Recommends Digital Photography Exposure for Dummies. This is my own photography book. It is one of the highest rated photography books at It is one of the most detailed and comprehensive “exposure” books on the market, and a great introduction to all things photographic with chapters on people, landscape, wildlife, flower, and sports photography.

Jennifer Blakeley Recommends Digital Photography Exposure for Dummies

Digital Photography Exposure for Dummies Receives Apogee Photo Magazine’s Highest Rating

Best Book on Professional Exposure Techniques

History of Photography

The Best Illustrated History of Photography

Composition Books

Photographic Composition: The Essential Book

Advanced Photographic Composition: The Best Books

People Photography Books

Excellent “How To Photograph People” Books

Nature Photography Books

Nature Photography Books: The Three Essentials. If you only read three nature photography books, put these on your “must read” list.

My Two Favorite Introductions to Landscape Photography. If you only get two books on landscape photography, these are the books to get.

The Best “How To” Nature Photography Books

Two Excellent Nature Photography Books by Tony Sweet

A Great “How To” Flower Photography Book by Tony Sweet

Jim Brandenburg: Chased by the Light. Looking for inspiration. A book and video to inspire your nature photography from a National Geographic photographer who had lost his own passion for photography.

Scenic Photo Location Guides and Guides to the National Scenic Byways

The Best Scenic Photo Location Guides

Wildlife Photography

How To Find Wildlife, The Best Books

How To Photograph Wildlife, The Best Books

Night and Astrophotography Books

The Best Night, Astronomy, and Astrophotography Books

Ansel Adams

Ansel Adams: Books by (and About) the Master

Digital Photography and/or Photoshop Books

The Best Digital Photography Books

A Full Year of Photo Projects, Arranged by Season

Photoshop, Lightroom, and Elements Books

The Best Basic Introductions to Elements, Photoshop, and Lightroom

Lightroom and Photoshop: The Essential Books

The Mastering Photoshop Series

The “Mastering Photoshop” Series – Series Overview

Mastering Photoshop & Lightroom: Adobe Camera Raw (ACR)

Mastering Photoshop: Advanced Color Correction, Part One

Mastering Photoshop: Advanced Color Correction, Part Two

Mastering Photoshop: Retouching, Part One

Mastering Photoshop: Retouching, Part Two

Photography Magazines

The Best Photography Magazines

Photography DVDs

My Favorite Photography DVDs

Great Set of DVDs: Joel Sartore’s Fundamentals of Photography

Jim Brandenburg: Chased by the Light – the story, the book, and the DVD

Photo Workshops and Photo Safaris

The Best Photography Seminars, Workshops, and Photo Safaris

PURCHASE LINKS – My Amazon linked photography store.