This post is now going for the most comments ever in my current blog. Since it is about camera equipment – that is no surprise. However, so far the answers have been very surprising. Let me preface this post with the following, to avoid confusion:
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Given the number of responses that are about reliability, that was not really what I was after in the thought experiment, and perhaps I didn’t make this clear:
whether you get a digital camera or a film camera, the Genie will make sure that it remains in working order for the rest of your life. The point of the experiment is about the camera that you’d like to use for the rest of your life, not whether it is going to break down or not. It’s also about the issue with digital cameras in that you are stuck with todays latest and greatest and can’t upgrade to the next model.
Good question regarding film. Since this is about the camera you want to use, the Genie will make sure you have a supply of film for as long as you need. He will make sure that the chemicals needed to process the film are around. But he won’t develop the film for you.
And if you choose a Canon 5d II, the Genie will make sure to fix your camera if anything goes wrong within the normal period of say 2 weeks?. Same for the mechanical camera. But under no circumstances will he replace your digital camera with the next model. That is the catch. I would guess that if he would upgrade you as needed, then most people would go for the digital package. And if they wouldn’t go with the digital package, then they should be using the film camera of their dreams today and for the rest of their lives.
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The original Post:
IF YOU COULD ONLY HAVE ONE CAMERA, and any lenses that fit that camera (as many lenses as you like), and you didn’t have to pay a dime for the setup, but you could only use that camera system for the rest of your life – what camera system would you buy? Would you even go for the deal at all? In the thought experiment, if you are found using another camera, even if you have it hidden in a secret place, the camera genie will find you and do severe damage to you. If this were a twilight zone episode, you’d lose your shutter finger. (Anyone remember that episode? No? I think it was about a gambler in Las Vegas.)
Now – if you select a digital camera, it will not be updated when the next model comes out. However, if you select a film camera with a digital back, that back can be updated when the next back comes out.
Would you go for the deal? If so – what camera system (remember you can also have as many lenses and accessories for that camera as you like). I’ll tell you my answer after I hear yours.