Wedding Photography and Videography Forum

Photographer's USB - should I buy it?

Hi everyone,

Quick photography question - total noob here when it comes to getting professional photos taken.  I'm eloping privately but afterwards we will have a 1 hour portrait session.  The photographer offers an option to buy a USB stick w/ the pics for $40.  I want to know -- how is this different from me just downloading the photos from the online gallery and putting them on a USB stick myself?  Is there some advantage to buying her $40 one?  

I've never had portraits done so thanks for any advice! :smiley: 

Re: Photographer's USB - should I buy it?

  • Their files on the USB are probably higher resolution.  If you download them from online, you won't be able to download the same quality or resolution images as the originals. If you want to do any larger size images, you definitely need the higher resolution.  So, I would recommend buying the USB.

    Also, does the photographer release the digital image rights to you, even if you don't buy the USB?  Unless they release the rights, technically they own the photos/images and I believe that you aren't legally allowed to reproduce them, print them, or load images online.  That usually isn't a problem as long as you use them for personal use only and not anything that makes money. For my engagement photos, we had to buy the rights for each photo we wanted digital file of.  For my wedding photos (different photographer) she gave us a CD with all our photos and gave us a signed release stating that we own full rights to all of the images.


  • Ditto PP, I personally would go for the USB. Usually when you get the USB you also have all the rights to the photos, but always make sure to ask. Also, I personally think it just nicer to have them on a USB. I can get to the photos on my time and pace without having to worry about going to the online gallery and searching. But that just my personal preference lol
  • The ones they have online may have a watermark on them to prevent people from downloading them for free.
  • Thanks for the thorough reply!  It comes with print rights even if I don't buy the USB.  I just looked at her page again and it's described as a "high res archive".  I don't plan to make big prints of the images but I might just get the USB anyway..

    Thanks for the advice :smiley: 
  • justsiejustsie member
    Ninth Anniversary 1000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    My photographer gave us right to the images, but it was placed on a CD and given to us. The online gallery we can look at and share with others but cannot download anything from, so that may also be why the photographer offers the USB?
  • 00kim0000kim00 member
    Fourth Anniversary 100 Love Its 100 Comments First Answer
    My photographer offered a CD (DVD?) as an option or we could download them and put them on our own storage. We asked, and for her it was the same resolution, she just offers both because some people are weird about having their images online and some people prefer to have a physical copy or don't get downloading images themselves and some people don't want to spend forever downloading stuff. The easy answer is ask your photographer why you'd want to buy the USB. For us, there was no good reason to buy the disk since we have no problem downloading, AND in our state if she provides us with any physical products she had to charge tax, but if it's all digital there's no tax, so that saved us money
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