For live event producers on a budget, used professional broadcast gear can deliver major advantages compared to buying everything brand new. From concerts and conferences to corporate events and worship services, used equipment allows production teams to create polished broadcasts and live streams without prohibitive equipment costs. In this article, we’ll explore the top benefits of incorporating used cameras, switchers, intercoms and other gear into event production workflows.

Significant Cost Savings

The most obvious benefit of used broadcast equipment is the cost savings. Buying gear second-hand can offer 50-80% discounts compared to new retail prices. For example, a used HD camera with lens can run $5,000-$10,000 compared to $15,000-$30,000 brand new. Even with potential maintenance costs, used gear still comes out far cheaper.

Savings multiply across an entire equipment fleet. Outfitting a multi-camera shoot with used equipment can feasibly come in under $100,000, a fraction of new gear costs. For events on a budget, the discount makes professional-grade equipment attainable that otherwise may be out of reach.

Get High-End Gear for Less

Along with cost savings, used gear allows access to higher-end broadcast equipment that might be budget-prohibitive at full price. For example, you can find late model, high-end cameras like Sony HDC-4300 4K systems for 30-50% off retail. Top-notch gear like this helps raise production value substantially.

Used equipment resellers also regularly stock late-model switchers, routers, intercom systems, monitors and specialty gear that smaller productions couldn’t otherwise access. This level of gear maintains reliability while delivering premium capabilities at lower cost.

Flexible Gear Acquisition Options

Purchasing used opens up more options for acquiring the broadcast gear you need. Rather than large capital expenditures on new systems, used lets you:

  • Purchase individual mix-and-match components
  • Lease gear short or long-term
  • Rent for single projects
  • Finance over time

This flexibility makes it easier to get the exact equipment your production requires. You can scale across projects and seasons cost-effectively.

Quickly Expand/Change Capabilities

Used gear enables easily expanding or changing production equipment as needs evolve. If taking on bigger shows, you can quickly add more cameras, switches and components to scale. Unused gear can be resold to upgrade systems across the board.

New capabilities can be added as well, like ramping up from HD to 4K acquisition or adding graphics systems. With used gear’s lower costs, making changes is much more affordable.

Wide Availability of Broadcast Equipment

While supply of new gear can be limited at times, there is widespread availability of used broadcast equipment. Resellers offer expansive inventories of late-model cameras, switchers, routers, intercom, graphics and specialty gear across price ranges.

Specific components needed like compatible lenses or rackmount accessories are also readily accessible used. Having accessible equipment makes it faster and easier to outfit mobile production units and flight packs.

Keep Productive During Repairs

No gear lasts forever, and broadcast equipment gets heavy use. When primary gear needs servicing, affordable used backups can help keep shooting schedules on track. Having an extra used camera body, switcher or other redundant component ensures the production can continue uninterrupted.

With used gear costing significantly less than new, keeping functional spares and replacements on-hand makes fiscal sense. Redundancy provides major risk reduction for live broadcast.

Resell Down the Road

Used equipment typically retains a good portion of its value if maintained well. Once you’re ready to upgrade systems, used gear purchased at discount can be resold to recoup some costs. Of course, condition impacts resale value. But even at 50% original used price, reselling puts thousands back into the budget.

Selling gear you no longer need helps offset new equipment purchases. Plus it gives used gear a second life for other producers.

Available Technical Support

Reputable used gear resellers provide technical support on equipment purchases to help avoid issues. Most test gear thoroughly prior to sale and some offer short equipment warranties. Purchasing from an established used dealer gives access to knowledgeable support.

They can also help troubleshoot problems and facilitate any needed repairs by qualified technicians. Look for used sellers that offer support services.

Obsolete New Gear Eventually Too

It’s easy to think used equipment seems outdated compared to new. But even brand new gear becomes obsolete surprisingly fast in the accelerating broadcast space. Costly switchers and cameras lose their luster once the next generation arrives.

In contrast, good used equipment purchased smartly at discount provides many years of reliable service at a fraction of original retail pricing. Well-maintained used gear stays extremely capable for modern productions.

Sustainable Acquisition Approach

Environmental sustainability is a growing priority for events and productions looking to reduce their environmental footprint. Reusing quality used gear rather than buying all new equipment embodies sustainability.

Used gear doesn’t incur the carbon costs of manufacturing and transporting new gear. It extends the useful life of professional equipment that otherwise may end up in landfills. As producing events and broadcasts more sustainably gains importance, used gear acquisition aligns well.

Accommodates Operating Budget Realities

Of course, budget constraints are reality for most productions. As pressures grow to deliver more professional, multi-platform content on limited budgets, used gear makes this achievable. Rather than big capital buys, used equipment allows you to operate within yearly budget realities.

More affordable used gear leaves room in budgets for life cycle replacement as needed. Considering budget challenges, used equipment acquisition just makes fiscal sense.

Get Polished Production Value

Using quality used gear by reputable manufacturers like Sony, Panasonic, Hitachi, Blackmagic and more enables producers to deliver polished, professional-grade video on a budget. Multi-camera switching, professional optics and robust processing help content shine.

Used gear budgets often allow investments in other critical components of professional broadcasts like communications, graphics and playback systems. The end result is high-value production that belies modest equipment costs.

For live event producers looking to elevate production value without overspending, used HD and 4K broadcast equipment deliver on all fronts. Used gear empowers you to affordably produce the memorable events your audiences expect.

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