The Top Brands for Used Broadcast Gear: Where to Find Quality Equipment

So you’re looking to source reliable used video equipment on a budget. But scouring random resale sites and hoping for the best seems risky.

As leading used broadcast gear suppliers for 10+ years, we at Allied Broadcast Group equip professional AV teams, production companies, broadcasters, schools, corporations, houses of worship, live event venues and more with affordable, field-tested equipment daily.

Through countless hours researching manufacturers, inspecting trade-ins, and evaluating gear performance, clear patterns emerge as to what brands consistently deliver quality AND value in the secondary used marketplace.

In this guide, we break down the gently used camera, lens, audio, lighting, and accessories models that provide superb bang-for-buck and where to find them, based on real-world reliability and client experiences. Read on for insider tips that help you score big savings on trustworthy used gear without compromise.

It Starts With Sourcing Reputable Used Inventory

Before exploring specific used gear brands and models to look out for, let’s cover where you should actually source reliable pre-owned equipment.

ALWAYS opt for well-established broadcast resellers over random eBay/Craigslist sellers when buying used. Reputable vendors thoroughly vet trade-in items, repairing/restoring anything deficient until gear clears stringent performance checks. They stand behind equipment functionality and know failures risk their long-term reputation. Storefronts like Allied also rent gear first to assess reliability before reselling.

Direct From the Original Owner

Sometimes, buying right from the source who meticulously maintained equipment for years offers peace of mind. Allied offers brokering services linking you to undiscovered gems.

Leasing Returns

Major equipment leasing companies receive frequent trade-ins of 1-3 year old broadcast items studios rely on. While lease returns may show exterior cosmetic wear, strict maintenance requirements ensure internal components remain pristine. Allied buys this gear as leases come to an end, and thoroughly tests all equipment to ensure excellent functionality before offering items for sale.

Auctions of TV Station Surplus

Dive into the bidding! News teams need the latest models on air but maintain equipment religiously until replacement. Allied will purchase the models being replaced and offer them for public auction. Score big at these overlooked events. Follow our social media so you never miss an auction!

The Gear Brands Pros Trust Most: Cameras & Lenses   

Now let’s explore the specific camera and lens manufacturers with proven reputations for durability, reliability, and holding value in the used marketplace. Allied is also an authorized dealer for all of these brands. That means you can purchase NEW from us as well as pre-owned.

Below we break down model lines known to deliver years of flawless HD video capture after initial purchase:


No brand carries more reputation clout across used gear segments than Sony. For cameras, their HDC and HXC lines span superior ENG and EFP models respectably, led by the HDC-4300 4K system. Plenty of cost-conscious news teams and event shooters opt for the reliable HXR-NX5u palm-sized camcorder still capable of gorgeous 1080p capture and playback. And Sony’s HDV 1080 line (FX1, V1U) remains a documentary filmmaking staple.


The brand behind L-Series lenses also delivers outstanding value in used handheld cameras via their XH series – namely the A1 and G1 models. These compact camcorders handle notoriously well, producing exceptional HD resolution rivaling more expensive systems. Canon’s XL H1A 1-CMOS sensor camera also retains loyal fans years later for its cinematic visual characteristics and integrated 20X HD zoom lens.


This leading brand may be best known for industrial-grade reliability across its AG-DVX and AG-HPX camcorder series, workhorse models still found everywhere today. Their P2 solid-state codec maintains consistent performance even after years of all-weather news and field production usage. For live event shooters, Panasonic’s AG-3DA1 integrated 3D rig delivers reliable stereo capture at used prices that can’t be beat.

Grass Valley:

A broadcast television stalwart, Grass Valley earned its sterling reputation supplying LDK studio cameras to major networks for decades. Their dual-format LDK 8000 line of CCD sensor WorldCams – led by the 8300 model – define reliability while bridging HD/4K and 1080i/720p production. The K2 Summit 3G server also holds substantial value, allowing facilities to cost-effectively meet HD playout demands.

For lenses, Canon and Fujinon models retain the greatest used marketplace value for their optics quality, robust physical construction and consistent ergonomics. Canon’s DIGISUPER line delivers state-of-the-art optics even 25 years later!

There you have the camera and lens manufacturers with proven reputations for quality AND value in the used broadcast marketplace according to our sales engineers and clients. Want to learn what other gear segments deliver reliability at friendly prices? Reach out to the used experts at Allied Broadcast Group today at (918) 250-5353!

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