The Lensrentals Podcast Episode #23 – How to Buy a Used Lens
Each week Roger Cicala, founder of Lensrentals.com, hosts conversations about the art and science of capturing images. From photography to videography, film, history, and technology, the show covers a wide range of topics to educate and inspire creators of all kinds.
How to Buy a Used Lens
After 2 years in rental rotation, we sell a good deal of our inventory at our sister site, LensAuthority.com. Roger talks with Connie who runs LensAuthority, and Joey, our Senior Photo Tech about what to look out for when buying a used lens, and when not to buy used gear. They discuss some of their favorite lenses that hold up well over time, valuable resources to reference before and after you’ve purchased a used lens, and share their opinions on if glass scratches and dust are considerations you should worry about.
Gear Referenced in this episode:
00:30 – Roger Cicala introduces Joey Miller and Connie Candebat
01:30 – Roger talks with Joey and Connie about how to not buy a used lens
03:00 – How one great copy of a $300 lens does not mean all of those lenses are great
04:20 – Connie talks about how to find a bargain when buying a lens
06:30 – Roger laments about primes verse telephotos
07:30 – The gang talks about third-party lenses and what to know about each of them
09:20 – Roger talks about servicing lenses when you buy used
10:10 – While hard to service geographically, Leica servicing does offer free repairs and servicing
11:10 – Joey talks about buying used gear online, and what marketplaces to look for
13:00 – Roger talks about the risk of buying gear that might be stolen
13:50 – Finding bargains when the brand releases a new version of a lens
15:00 – Finding cosmetic defects to help find deals
17:20 – Differentiating a scratch, a ding, and a dent
18:00 – Roger talks about some of his biggest bargains when buying used
18:45 – Roger talks about finding a spider in a lens, and the optical changes it caused
20:00 – Wheeling and dealing with used prices
21:00 – BREAK
21:30 – Joey talks about buying extended warranties on used gear
22:15 – Connie also talks about third party warranty providers
23:30 – How parts can be hard to find for older equipment
25:50 – How to assure you give time to inspect gear before committing to buy it
26:50 – Why you should take photos of the box upon receiving gear
29:00 – Roger asks if you should be concerned about a lens age when buying used
30:40 – Why higher-priced gear often holds up better over time
33:00 – Connie and Roger talk about pricing out used lenses
34:00 – Roger talks about what you should do the moment you get your purchased used lens, and what to look for
36:00 – Joey talks about Image Stabilization units, and what to look for
37:00 – Connie talks about how to test a used lens
39:00 – Connie, Roger, and Joey talk about zoom creep and barrel jiggle
42:00 – Joey talks about looking for buffed out scratches
The Lensrentals Podcast is a production of Lensrentals, founded by Roger Cicala. Our production staff includes Drew Cicala, Ryan Hill, Sarah McAlexander, SJ Smith, Julian Harper, John Tucker, and Zach Sutton. Other contributors include Roger Cicala, Joey Miller, Ally Aycock Patterson, Joshua Richardson, and Philip Robertson.
Thanks to Jacques Granger for our theme song.
Articles written by the entire editorial and technical staff at LensRentals.com. These articles are for when there is more than one author for the entire post, and are written as a community effort.