List of Hong Kong Photography Shops and Other Professional Photo Resources
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Hong Kong is a city where it seems everyone is constantly selling, shopping, or on the way to sell or shop; yet with all that commerce, finding the right place to buy many specialty items in the city - professional photography equipment, for instance - is surprisingly challenging. Many shops have poor online presences or are just plain obscure.
In an effort to make some of the better Hong Kong photo equipment businesses a bit easier to locate (and to avoid regurgitating this sort of information in emails), here is a list of the places where I have done business, shopped, or been referred in Hong Kong.
Yes, this page has grown long enough that I've resorted to navigating the thing via in-page hyperlinks (circa 1995?):
- General Camera Shops
- Rental and Lighting
- Seamless Background Paper
- Camera Repair and Service
- Scanning, Printing, Film Processing and Related Services
- Photo Studio Rental
- Model Agencies
- Aerial Photography - Helicopters
- Business Registration / Working Visas
- Other Bits
A note on pricing: Hong Kong rates for common items - like new Canon and Nikon kit - are usually similar to those at the major American mail order outfits. Prices for less common imported items can be all over the map.
- Photo Scientific Photographic Equipment and Supplies
Ground Floor, 6 Stanley St, Central, Hong Kong
Tel: +852 2525 0550
Fax: +852 2810 6917
Email: enquiry [at] photoscientific [dot] com
Photo Scientific is the first camera shop I was introduced to in Hong Kong and a perennial favorite. Mr. Poon is certainly amongst the most personable camera shop salesmen in Hong Kong (a place known for an otherwise abrasive retail environment).
Photo Scientific has a good selection of cameras and lenses, stocks various films and can order seamless paper backgrounds. They stock small accessories but are not the place to go for lighting, grip or studio equipment.
- Mirama Photo Supplies
45 Stanley Street Central
As of 2013-05, I'm told Mirama is now located on the other side of the street - something like 21 Stanley St.; if you can confirm the new address, please do.
Mirama Photo is just down the street from Photo Scientific. I don't find the environment there nearly as charismatic as Photo Scientific but they do have a similar selection of cameras, lenses and small accessories.
- Zhao Xiang Guan
Rm 1201-02, 12/F, Kimberley House
35 Kimberley Road, Tsim Sha Tsui
zxgcwsel [at] hotmail [dot] com
Tel: +852 2722 0068
+852 2722 0161
Fax: +852 2366 9915
Zhao Xiang Guan has a reputation for being amongst the best general camera and light photo equipment shops in Hong Kong. I haven't bought anything there but have visited a couple times. It is certainly the best camera shop I've seen in Tsim Sha Tsui. Some say you will get the best results working with Sun.
Zhao Xiang Guan is one of the few places in Hong Kong that carry Photoflex lighting. I've also heard that it is the best place to buy used cameras and lenses in the territory.
- DC Wave
Shop 323-324, 3/F., Sim City
47-51 Shan Tung Street
Mong Kok, Hong Kong
DC Wave is one of better shops in Mong Kok. It is part of a large, multi-story indoor photo market with a variety of shops that include purveyors of inexpensive (often low-quality) Chinese-branded photo goods, used camera shops and other odds and ends. The shops here are a bit more upscale than the Apliu Street market shops (see below) but generally not aimed at professional photographers.
DC Wave has a selection of cameras and lenses but specializes, it seems, in imported accessory brands that are a bit scarce in Hong Kong: ThinkTank, Markins, Photoflex, and Lumiquest, amongst others. Prices are generally higher than at B&H Photo or Adorama.
- Tin Cheung Camera
Tin Cheung has a number of retail outlets in Hong Kong. I find their prices high and haven't been impressed by their staff; they do carry a broad range of equipment and are relatively convenient to find in a pinch.
There are many other retail purveyors of cameras in Hong Kong. I would avoid most of them at all costs, particularly the places in Tsim Sha Tsui with window displays full of shrink-wrapped DSLRs and point-and-shoots. Be sure to check for a valid international warranty for Canon and Nikon goods if manufacturer coverage is a concern.
- Rent A Pro Limited Hong Kong
407 Block B Ming Pao Center
18 Ka Yip Street
+852 2838 6328
info [at] rentaprohk [dot] com
Rent A Pro is the main (only?) still photography rental house in Hong Kong and the only supplier I know for some professional expendables like color correction gels. They make a nice large light stand bag that is a particularly good value (although rather large). Prices for equipment are often on the high side but the guys know their stuff and are helpful.
- A&S Broadcast Hong Kong
15/F., YooHoo Tower,
38-42 Kwai Fung Crescent,
Kwai Chung, N.T.
Phone : +852 2499 1011
E-mail : info [at] asbroadcast [dot] com
A&S is a good place to buy lights and video equipment. All my Dedolights are from A&S; they have excellent prices for Dedolights. The company is geard towards video and isn't really a retail operation; get a quote for the exact things you want well ahead of time and then be prepared to wait for them to be ordered and shipped. Be sure to ask for Peter Chang; he seems to be the only member of the staff who does any selling.
- Film Gear
No.7, Cumberland Road, Kowloon Tong, Hong Kong
(852) 2794 3608
Mr. Donny Chan/ Mr. Johnny Leung
info [at] filmgear [dot] net; donny [at] filmgear [dot] net; johnny [at] filmgear [dot] net
Film Gear is a manufacturer of really nice fresnels and other continuous lighting fixtures. I've picked up orders from their Guangzhou factory but it is possible to arrange to collect equipment from their Hong Kong office as well. Their fixtures are high quality and priced well; their prices for bulk expendables are excellent as well (if you need a full roll of CTB, for instance).
Film Gear isn't a retail operation; if you only want to buy one fixture or if you need to pick up a few lights in a hurry, they might not be able to help.
- Cinerent Limited
No.7, Cumberland Road, KowloonTong, Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: (852) 2338 7188
Fax: (852) 2338 3186
Email: hongkong [at] cinerent [dot] net
Cinerent is the best-known rental house in Hong Kong serving the motion picture industry. They are run by the same parent company as Film Gear, I believe. I've never worked with them directly but would enquire if I needed to rent a large quantity of continuous lighting, grip equipment, camera support or sound paraphernalia.
There is another cinema rental house in Hong Kong but I have been disappointed in the state of repair of their rental items.
- The Lens Room
+852 5605 4962
lensroomhk [at] gmail [dot] com
The Lens Room offers an unusual rental service; they deliver and pick up the equipment from your door. I haven't worked with them but have heard positive feedback.
- Radiant Company
Rm. 101 1/F - Thomson Ctr
76 Thomson Rd.
Wanchai Hong Kong
Phone: +852 2575 7859
Fax: +852 2520 0973
radiantco [at] yahoo [dot] com [dot] hk
Radiant is the distributor for Elinchrom strobes in Hong Kong. They also offer repair services.
- Prosperity Lamps
+852 3416 8331
+852 9026 9862
peter [dot] chong [at] prosperitylamps [dot] com
I don't have any experience with Prosperity Lamps but hear they sell continuous lighting fixtures for video production and still photography.
Suites 4201-3, 42/F., One Island East
18 Westlands Road
Island East (Quarry Bay), Hong Kong
852 2524 5031
info [at] shriro [dot] com [dot] hk
Shiriro is the HK distributor for Broncolor strobes and Hasselblad cameras among other things. I asked them for a quotation once and was not impressed.
Unit E1, 11/F, Phase 1,
Hang Fung Bldg.,
2G Hok Yuen St.,
KLN, Hong Kong
+852 2363 2825
info [at] falconeyes [dot] com [dot] hk
Falconeyes is a manufacturer/distributor of Chinese-produced lighting equipment. I haven't been to their HK office but have bought some grip equipment from their shop in Guangzhou. Their stuff is generally a step above the completely generic Chinese stuff (much of the merchandise at Apliu Street falls in the later category). I prefer to use grip from Matthews, Manfrotto and such but their merchandise is difficult to find and/or extremely over-priced in Hong Kong; Falconeyes does the job in a pinch.
- Keng Seng Trading & Co., Ltd.
1/Floor, Winner Commercial Building,
401 - 403 Lockhart Road,
Tel.: +852 2591 1068
Fax: +852 2893 2259
hongkong [at] kengseng [dot] com
I haven't visited Keng Seng but hear they carry seamless background paper in just about every color out there.
- Photo Scientific Photographic Equipment and Supplies
See listing above under "General Camera Shops" for address
I don't believe Photo Scientific stocks seamless paper; I am told that they can and will order it by request.
- Canon Professional Services Hong Kong
17/F., 26 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon
the service center is on the 11th floor
canon_cps [at] chk [dot] canon [dot] com [dot] hk
Canon Professional Services Hong Kong is the place to go in Hong Kong if you have a Canon camera in need of TLC. Discounts are given to CPS HK members; turn around time is also a little faster.
If you bring a camera in for a sensor clean before 11, you can usually pick it up later that day. Most repairs take two days to a week.
- Nikon Professional Services Hong Kong
Nikon Hong Kong LTD.
Suite 1001, 10/F
1111 King's Road
Taikoo Shing, Hong Kong
I don't shoot Nikon so have not worked with NPS or been to their HK NPS office (please verify the above address before visiting!). I have heard that Connie is their top rep: +852 2902 9007
- Sellen International
Room 1105~6, Chevalier House, 45-51 Chatham Road South,T. S. T. Kowloon, Hong Kong.
info [at] sellenhk [dot] com
A friend reports that Sellen works on Mamiya equipment, apparently exclusively.
Camera Repair Centre LTD.
17B G/F Champagne Court
16 Kimberley Road
Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon
+852 2366 3002
I haven't visited the Camera Repair Centre and am generally leery of Champagne Court in general, but have heard of this repair shop successfully addressing faulty Nikon equipment.
Panda Camera-Repair Service
Mr. Lee Cho Tat
Penthouse, Double Building
22 Stanley Street, Central, Hong Kong
Tel: 2522 9905, 2522 9908
I have heard Panda mentioned as a good independent repair shop but have no experience with them myself.
Of the below firms, I only have direct experience with Chaudigital. I have heard good things about the other places from friends who have used their services.
Chaudigital Hong Kong Limited
Room 609, Chai Wan Industrial City, Phase 2, 70 Wing Tai Road, Chai Wan, Hong Kong
(852) 9240 1131
Chaudigital is the Hong Kong distributor for Hahnemuhle papers. Danny Chau, the firm's founder, is perhaps the best-regarded fine art printer in the region.
I have only bought paper at Chaudigital; a friend commissioned Danny to make a few extremely large prints with pleasing results. Chow Yun-fat happened to be visiting Danny when I was there and gave me a ride to Sham Shui Po, which makes it difficult for me to rank either the shop or the actor as anything but the coolest in Hong Kong.
36 Tai Chung Hau
Sai Kung, NT, Hong Kong
+852 6680 8272
gresham [at] mediavisual [dot] com
This sounds like a small b-to-b operation offering printing, laminating and mounting services.
Flat B, 5/F., North Point Ind Bldg., 499 King's Road, North Point, H.K.
(852) 2889 0171
gloria [at] christco [dot] com [dot] hk
Christco apparently no longer processes film (see the comments). They do appear to be one of the few (if only?) shops offering drum scanning.
Hong Kong Imaging
Hong Kong Imaging
9/F, Henan Building
19 Luard Road (entrance on Jaffe Road)
Wanchai, Hong Kong
contact [at] hongkongimaging [dot] com
Telephone: (852) 3180-7680
Mobile Phone Number: (852) 6971-6761
Room A, 7 Floor,
Wah Ha Factory Building,
8 Shipyard Lane,
Telephone 2573 2092
E6 processing as well as other lab services.
1/F, 51 Wellington Street, Central, Hong Kong
+852 2526 0123
Digital and analog processing and enlargement, as well as framing and related services. I have heard them mentioned a few times but usually in the context of finding someone else to do the job.
+852 9609 2124
1801 Wing On Central Building
28 Des Vouex Road Central,
+852 9609 2124
quixoticgallery [at] gmail [dot] com
Quixotic Gallery specializes in printing on canvas. I haven't used them but they do come highly recommended from a photographer I respect.
14B, Redana Centre,
25 Yiu Wa St.,
+852 2575 3355
thefilme [dot] sales [at] gmail [dot] com
Film, processing and related services. I have no direct experience with the place but it looks like another Lomo boutique (I've seen a few of these open recently). If you are a Holga-toting hipster or otherwise aspire to attain celluloid and silver nirvana, this could be your right up your alley.
Dot-Well Photo Workshop
G/F, 44 Carnarvon Rd,
+852 2368 3826
info [at] dotwellphoto [dot] com
Dot-Well is another shop for analog aficionados; they offer a wide-range of film and associated paraphernalia as well as processing services. I haven't been there but a friend is a fan.
I have not rented studio space in Hong Kong but have heard of the below spaces.
3F Hong Kong Jewellery Bldg.
178-180 Queens Road Central
Tel 2834 3200
- Chickenfish Studios
- Rent A Pro Limited Hong Kong
See entry under 'Rental' category above for details.
I don't have direct experience with any of these agencies; they have been recommended by a reputable Hong Kong photographer.
- Jimmy Model Management
Flat 1602, 16/F, Professional Bldg, 19-23 Tung Lo Wan Rd, Causeway Bay, HK
keith-jimmymodel [at] hotmail [dot] com
- Billions Model Management
Room 803, 8/F, Yue Xiu Building, 160-174 Lockhart Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong
CK Lee, Director
+852 3488 6170
info [at] billionsmodel [dot] com
- Mission Models Limited
8/F., Kwong Fat Hong Building, 1 Rumsey Street, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong
Milla Chung, Booker - milla [at] missionmodels [dot] com [dot] hk
Tel: +852 2815 0555
Mobile: +852 6067 8162
Fax: +852 2815 1311
- Style International Management Limited
Room 701, 7/F, Park Commercial Centre, 180 Tung Lo Wan Road, Tin Hau, Hong Kong
+852 9037 7034
Kelvy kelvy [at] stylemgt [dot] com [dot] hk
msn : alicenine_devil [at] hotmail [dot] com
- Talent Hundred Performance Limited
22/F, Shun Kwong Comm. Building, 8 Des Voeux Road West,HK.
+852 6686 7176
+852 3163 2313
Randy Shiu, Booker
+852 9777 0608
+852 3163 2313
randyshiu [at] talent100 [dot] com
Ms. Hugo Lau, Booker
+852 6686 7176
hugolau [at] talent100 [dot] com
- Stage Models
Kenny Yeung, Manager
Tel: +852 2877 7809
Fax: +852 2111 0261
- Retro House
Unit 4H, Tung Kin Factory Building, 200-202 Tsat Tsz Mui Road, Quarry Bay, Hong Kong
Ruby Ho, Marketing Executive
info [at] retro [dot] com [dot] hk
- Starone Model Agent
+852 9817 8981
staronehk [at] hotmail [dot] com
- Magnum (Offset) Printing Co. Ltd
11B E-Tat Factory Building, 4 Heung Yip Road, Wong Chuk Hang, Hong Kong.
Tel : +852 2555 2438
Fax: (852) 2814 0524
info [at] magnumoffset [dot] com [dot] hk
Magnum is a quality offset printing company based in Hong Kong. A friend had his photo book printed there and I shot a video of the printing process at Magnum's Hong Kong factory and Dongguan book bindery.
In the interest of full disclosure, I should mention that Magnum did buy me lunch a few times (which was both tasty and very much appreciated).
- AO: The Photo Book Center
G/F, Asia One Tower, 8 Fung Yip Street, Chai Wan
Tel: +852 2976 0913
Business Hours: 11am – 8pm (Mon – Sat)
This retail arm of the Asia One publishing group has perhaps the largest selection of photo books in Hong Kong. AO also offers small run custom publishing services that could be useful.
- Laurence Lai Gallery
Shop No.31, L1 and Shop No. 3, G/F
The Peak Galleria, 118 The Peak Road, Hong Kong
+852 2191 2097
The Laurence Lai Gallery is a commercial gallery primarily targeting tourists. Laurence, the owner, is an enthusiastic supporter of local photography and entirely worth meeting.
- Insuright Insurance Brokers Ltd.
I've heard Insuright mentioned as the best bet in local insurance options for Hong Kong photographers. I have no personal experience with the company.
neil [at] kwiksure [dot] com
Kwiksure also insures photographers. It seems Neil is the go-to guy there: neil [at] kwiksure [dot] com
+852 2802 0200
chp [at] heliservices [dot] com [dot] hk
According to Graham Uden (author of a book of HK aerial photos), it can be nearly impossible to book flights on clear days (when most photographers would want to go aloft in a whirlybird), not to mention expensive. Typhoon season in Hong Kong (around June) usually features the greatest number of clear days.
+852 9227 7757
+852 2982 8684
joe_yu_ [at] hotmail [dot] com
RC helicopter services; able to put a DSLR aloft for something like 1/25th the cost of hourly helicopter rental.
- Hong Kong Visa Geeza
Hong Kong is known for its relatively humane immigration policy and free business environment. Many freelance photographers obtain working visas by registering a business in HK (which requires little more than a local mailing address) then applying for a working visa through that company (a process apt to require substantially more documentation).
- Apliu Street Flea Market
There are a number of shops dealing in Chinese-brand photography accessories at the Apliu Street market in Sham Shui Po. Prices are often better than those in mainland China and the goods are sometimes higher quality. It is possible to find things at Apliu Street that will last quite well under professional use but the vast majority of the goods are poorly designed, sloppily made and produced from materials inferior to those found in imported goods (to be a bit blunt...).
From the Sham Shui Po metro station, take the Apliu Street exit then turn left. There are four or so camera shops scattered along both sides of the walking street.
- Howen International Co
RM. 201, 2nd Floor, Entrepot Centre, 117 How Ming St., Kwun Tong, Kowloon, Hong Kong
howen [at] pacific [dot] net [dot] hk
Howen International is the Hong Kong distributor for Think Tank Photo bags and Markins tripod ballheads. Their shop is a bit out in the middle of nowhere (by Hong Kong standards) but David, the proprietor, is exceptionally nice and a great salesman.
- Golden Computer Market
146-152 Fuk Wah Street
The Golden Computer Market is the best place I've found to buy hard drives and other bits and pieces of computer hardware I frequently need for storing and working with digital photos: everything from monitors to odd-length USB cables. Prices are sometimes lower in mainland China or Macau.
- Wan Chai Computer Center
The Wan Chai computer market is perhaps more convenient than the Golden market but generally has higher prices and a smaller selection of odd electronic components.
It's right on top of the Wan Chai metro station; follow the signs in the station to get to the correct exit.
Flat 4, 2/F., Chong Fat Building
266-268 Cheung Sha Wan Road
Sham Shui Po, Kowloon
+852 2728 7728
VST is one of the main companies handling warranty service on hard drives (which photographers, or at least this photographer, buy often and replace often under warranty). I list them here because their contact details aren't listed on their hard drive warranty stickers, only a very criptic "VST." Their warranty office is near the Sham Shui Po metro station (exit A2, I believe). Bring a receipt and original box if you have it.
The Hong Kong Institute of Professional Photographers Ltd (HKIPP) also has a list of Hong Kong resources for professional photographers. The HKIPP is a valuable resource in and of itself as well.