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I saw a second hand Canon 550 today, with a lens, something to 50, I think the lens was, for £195. I was tempted even though it was a bit grubby and money is a little short. I didn't because I realise I know so little about cameras. I have heard it said that it is good to know how many shutter operations have been used, but how many is too many? Where do you find that information?

Could someone please direct me to a website which offers advice on what to watch out for with second hand cameras, better yet give some advice here, for someone, like me, wanting to dip toes into astro photography. I will want to use it for ordinary use too, so if someone could advise about astro modded, such as: can it be done temporally?  🙂

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I am no expert. My advice is free and worth what you pay for it.

I don't know of any specific reputable advisory site. SGL seems very good on advice though.

My limited experience (some years ago) was buying a used Canon 1000D. This was great for 'ordinary use, and despite the red cut filter gave acceptble (to me) results with a scope.

However, I soon found that so many of the settings differed between 'sky' and 'people' photography that it got confusing.
Turning off the screen and other lighting for example. Was that setup menu 3 or menu 2?

In the end I bought a used astro modded 1000D. It gives distinctly pink pictures in the day, but I don't use it off the scope. So I don't get confused about camera settings.

In the cold and dark I don't want to be thumbing through the camera operating instructions to set up for astro use. I want to just switch on and go.
There are enough other things like tracking, cloud, dangling cables and the computer to worry about without adding camera adjustments.

With two cameras the same model, I soon got familiar with their operation. But managed to keep 'tweaking for us' to a minimum.

To me shutter count has to be considered with the previous owners use. The shutter, being electronics, is not going to wear out. OK electronics does fail eventually, but generally if it gets through the first few hours, or tens of hours, it is good for years. A high count on an astro camera may mean it has been powered up snaping away unattended overnight. Nothing more. A high count on a 'daytime' camera may mean it has had a lot of use. What sort of use? Wedding photos? Sports photos by a participant?

To me, a grubby camera is indicative of an owner who has not looke after the equipment. It is more likely to have had connectors abused, discharged battereis left in place. Dropped and knocked, etc.

Hope this helps, David.

Edited by Carbon Brush
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It has helped thank you. 🙂

29 minutes ago, Carbon Brush said:

To me, a grubby camera is indicative of an owner who has not looke after the equipment

My thoughts exactly, which was a major reason for my hesitation.

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20 hours ago, Carbon Brush said:

The shutter, being electronics, is not going to wear out.

I think the shutter on the 1000D, although electronically controlled, is mechanical, and I believe they do fail.

NigelM

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