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While shooting at Mahim Causeway one sunset, Harishchandra Shivaji Thange watched us and then to break the ice, said, “aaaah 7D.” He was talking about our trusty Canon 7D we deploy for all the videos you see on Real Reviews.
“That’s right,” we said. “Are you a photographer?” He took out his business card and handed it to us. It read Hari Photos, as he is better known in Ulhasnagar where he operates; in his words, “his duplicate name.” He was taking a break from a mass Koli wedding taking place on the beach, and seemed eager to make conversation, assuming we were from a news channel. After introducing ourselves, we began to probe him on the cameras he uses. And we even trained ours on him, with his permission, of course.

 

Hari, it turned out, has been a wedding photographer for three years, since he switched over to a Nikon D 40 after obsessively taking photos on his cell phone. Three years later, he owns four Nikon cameras, all in the D series — the D 40, D 90, D 10 and D 7000. And Nikon is a brand he says he is likely to stick to for many more years.

His reasons gave us an understanding of the longwinded process of making such a simple purchase. And yes, of course, tech specs, tech news and advertising have absolutely nothing to do with it. For a number of professional photographers like Hari – who in our experience are mostly Nikon users — caution, comfort, network and user experience dictates their buying decision.

Budget:

Hari chose to start with the Nikon D 40 because, as he says in the video, at the time, for a cash-strapped Mumbaikar, he had Rs. 20,000 at his disposal. The Nikon cost Rs. 25,0000 and the equivalent Canon model cost Rs. 30,000. The choice was easy.

Habit/ease of use:

It’s surprising how much weight a familiar settings dial carries. Hari is habituated to the top dial of the Nikon, and says he can rejig the settings on any Nikon camera within 1.5 to 2 seconds, whereas doing that on a Canon – with a top dial and rear settings — takes him at least 1-2 minutes, and he would never dream of venturing there.

Missing a vital shot in challenging settings like weddings can be pretty bad for business. Cameras, he says, are like cars — man and machine just tune into each other. He says in the video that once he realized his Nikon camera gave him good results for his line of work, he said to himself, ‘why not get another Nikon’. And today he owns a D 40, D 90, D 10 and D 7000. He is now planning to buy an upgrade from the Nikon D series itself.

Fraternity:

Almost all of Hari’s friends and friends of friends in the profession are Nikon users, who are also habituated to their Nikon gear. All recommendations that come from old hands – and recommendations are all that matter – are within that safe zone. Hari says he wants to start a studio soon and he has a new D series camera in mind. Typically, before making an investment, he relies on user experience of friends who have used a particular camera. He gets all relevant information out of them in terms of performance and long term benefits of that camera.

Rent a camera:

And since, the whole network uses Nikon, and are used to its design, renting a camera – which is also how Hari earns his bread – necessitates that everyone stocks the same brand.

Family:

In Hari’s family, buying is not an individual decision, especially when it requires a huge investment. Once he has user feedback, and has settled on what model to buy, he sits down his father, immediate and extended family, and buys a camera only after getting a go-ahead

Retail Network:

Hari buys his gear from CST/Fort area, from retailers that have long been patronized by his more experienced Nikon wielding friends. He turns to them for advice and there his buying decision comes full circle.
Product: Nikon D 40

Price: Rs. 31,990

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One Response

  1. jamdesigncenter

    u cant imagine any weeding,if u forgot to take photos or unable to take good quality pics

    Reply

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