All tagged Gear

Continuing to prolong the life of my old Mac Pro

I’ve been managing to keep an ageing 2012 Mac Pro as my main computer for nearly 7 years now, and from time to time its really been a struggle. Over the years I’ve added various upgrades and replacement parts, and its somehow managed to keep going, despite getting a tremendous amount of use. Lately though it’s been driving me mad. It takes nearly an hour to reboot - from off to being useable. The OS comes up in about two minutes, but by the time everything loads and settles down and is useable - it’s nearly an hour. This is partly because of a slow system drive, and partly due to years of bits and pieces clogging the OS

The L-Mount Alliance, Some Thoughts

While the rumours of Panasonic planning to release a new full frame camera were fairly rampant in the lead up to Photokina, I think the announcement of a partnership between Sigma, Panasonic and Leica took many by surprise. Once you think about it, it makes a lot of sense. Panasonic and Leica already have a long partnership, and Leica have an existing mount and system, so using that makes a lot of sense for Panasonic. Sigma also joining this group is interesting, because it means that there will be the potential for the system to expand much more quickly than it would with just one manufacturer.

Editorial - New Mirrorless Cameras: It’s about choice

With the new mirrorless camera options from Nikon and Canon there has been a lot of discussions about the various specs and pros and cons of these new cameras. Now that the initial craziness has died down a bit we’re starting to see reactions from those actually using these cameras, and for the most part the opinion from those with real world experience seems to be mostly positive. Something struck me though when reading some of the reviews, and also readings some comments on my own content, is that people may be missing the most important thing about these releases: Its about choice.

One of my earliest lessons on Cameras and Gear

Many (too many) years ago, at the beginning of my career in television production, I did a government-sponsored course of film and video production. It was how I got started, and I loved every minute of it. I wouldn’t be where I was today without that course, and I’ll talk about that more at some point in the future, but there was one really important lesson I learned in the first week, which has stuck with me to this day and applies across all fields. 

A few more Nikon Z-Series Notes

After the initial hype (and the corresponding outpouring of disappointment and scorn) lots of details have begun to emerge about Nikon’s new mirrorless cameras, and there are a couple of interesting tidbits that I came across. So here are a few notes in no particular order.

Signal to Noise Ratio: Why some camera comparisons are wrong

An age-old measure of the performance of many types of recording is “signal to noise ratio”. In essence, it looks at how much noise there is compared to useful signal in any given medium, whether it’s an analogue transmission or even a digital recording. There’s one thing that I’ve noticed a lot recently, and that is when people compare cameras they often look at 1:1 crops to compare the results. In particular, they use this to compare noise performance between cameras. However, when comparing cameras of different resolutions, this may not actually give you an accurate comparison. The reason for this is that when doing this you’re only looking at one part of the equation, the noise, without considering the other part: the signal. 

Lensball Review

If you haven’t seen them before, a Lensball is basically a polished glass sphere. That’s pretty much all there is to it, but once you’re aware of it, you start to see them cropping up everywhere, in Instagram and other online photos. A little while ago, the company that makes them sent me one to review, and I’ve been having fun with it ever since.

Shooting Light: Capturing Sunset with the Sony A6000 and Kit Lens (and a Canon G7XII)

A few weeks ago I wanted to photograph something a little different, so we headed out to a place in North County Dublin where you can see Dublin Port from the far side, as well as watch the boats come and go. We timed the trip so that we would arrive as the sun begins to set, and I was only travelling light camera wise. I went equipped with the Sony A6000, with the only lens being the kit lens. I also had the Canon G7XII with me, which I had initially brought just to shoot video, but I ended up shooting stills with it too.

Two Street Photo Lenses for the Sony A6000 (Sigma 30mm & 19mm)

When I did a recent episode of my “Street Photo Diary” series of videos, in which I shot with the Sony A6000, I got a lot of questions about the lenses that I use. The two that I probably use the most when shooting street photography, str two Sigma Lenses, the 30mm and 19mm f/2.8. In this video, I go shooting with these lenses and give you a quick review as well as showcasing the process.

Introducing “The Photography Geek Show” (Or something similar)

I’ve been plugging away at my YouTube channel for a while now, and I had this idea for something that I wanted to try, but it’s taken me some time to get it together. I have lots of different bits and pieces that I do, and I have a few different “series”, such as “Street Photo Diary”. Instead of all these disparate threads, I wanted to try and create one good video a week. With that in mind, here is the first episode of that new series. For the moment I’m calling it “The Photography Geek Show” although that may change. I’m open to suggestions!

An Interesting New Lens for Sony E-Mount from Rokinon

While Sony’s APS-C E-mount lineup is known for not exactly having an exciting lineup of lenses, people often forget that you can use full frame E-mount lenses on these cameras too. Having said that, many of Sony’s full-frame E-mount lenses are quite expensive and heavy or both. However, there are a few new third party lenses coming out that are designed for full frame but I can see actually working really well on cropped sensors too. One of those is the new 24mm Autofocus lens from Rokinon.

Some Bits and Pieces

I’ve come across a few interesting tidbits-bits of information over the past week that I wanted to share, but none of it was long enough to put into individual blog posts, so I thought I’d compile it all into a singe compilation. This is pretty random, but anyway.

Sony A7III: Redefining “Basic”

Sony has just announced the newest iteration of their full frame “A7” series. The A7III is the new “basic” model in the A7 lineup. This is the third generation of Sony’s first full frame mirrorless camera, and it feels like the line has reached a level of maturity with this new version. Sony may call it “basic”, but based on the specs it is anything but.

New Vlogging Camera: Canon G7X Mark II

As mentioned in several previous posts, I’ve been planning to do some more vlogging and videos, and I’ve wanted to get a small and unobtrusive camera for that purpose. I’ve been trying out several options, and so I used a christmas gift voucher haul to splash out on a new one. I settled on the Canon G7X Mark II. It’s a small, 1inch sensor compact camera, that does good video, and it has a flip over screen for self monitoring.