Sometimes I think a tripod is like a good pair of shoes. While anyone that fits will do for walking around, you really need to find the right one for you in order to be comfortable with it. I have three different tripods, all of which work perfectly fine, but none are exactly comfortable. With that in mind, I’ve been looking for something that fits my needs a little better, so when the folks at K&F sent me a tripod to review I thought that this was a combination of good timing and good fortune, as I wanted to try out this exact type.
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.
I was recently contacted by a representative from K&F concept who wanted to know if I would be interested in reviewing one of their camera bags. I actually have some of their other products, in particular some of their adaptor rings, and I’m really impressed with the quality for the price. So I said sure, why not! so they sent me one of their DSLR backpacks to try.
With cameras constantly being released, I have found that a lot of the commentary around certain brands and models revolves around comparing the tech specs. People argue about things like minute differences in dynamic range or noise response as reasons to pick one camera over another. But there's so much more to choosing a camera.
When Nikon pre-announced the D850 a little while ago, I was filled with a mix of excitement and a sense of trying not to get my hopes up. I have long been an owner of the Nikon D700, which was Nikon’s first model in this style of full frame smaller body cameras. I love the D700 and I still use it all the time, but it’s starting to show its age. I really want a high resolution camera for landscape and nature work, but I also want one that does video. I had hoped when the rumours started of the D850, that Nikon would come out with something similar to the Sony A7RII. I was not disappointed.
Last week I posted the latest issue of my on-going Street Photo Diary series to my PhotoJournal blog. I had taken those shots in a single session and I felt that they worked well together as a set, however, I have a few more images that I took recently too. They didn’t really fit into the narrative that I was going with, so I thought that I would share them here in a separate post, with a bit more info on how I shot them.
A while ago I attempted my first “blog” style video, where I filmed myself shooting street photography and editing the results. I’ve done another similar video and in this one I spent some time shooting with the Sony A6000 using adapted lenses. I used two different lenses on this shoot: an old Nikon 105mm f2/2.8 macro lens, and a Canon 17-40 f/4 L wide angle lens. I started in a local park shooting some flowers and then did a little bit of street photography too.
I recently watched a video on YouTube where the use of a SonyA6000 was discussed as a low cost entry into shooting video. In the video they acquired an A6000 second hand for a very reasonable price, and it got me thinking that this makes a really good entry level camera for street photography. I have kept a lot of my old cameras over the years, and it got me thinking as to what else would work well too. So after doing a bit of research, here are my two suggestions.
When the rumours of the new Sony A6500 surfaced a few days before it was announced, I have to say, I was a little skeptical. I really didn’t think Sony would release another camera in the range so soon after the A6300 but I was happy to be proven wrong. The newly announced A6500 is a step above the 6300 and pretty much addresses all the criticism of the 63000 which is also still fairly new
Continuing on from my post the other day, I’ve done some more shooting with my borrowed Sony A7II using some of my Canon lenses. This time, I was back out in the city of Dublin. I wanted to do something a little different, and so I used my 17-40f4L Canon lens to get some cityscape shots.
With Photokina just around the corner, and with most of the major manufacturers probably going to announce new cameras, I’ve been thinking about what my ideal camera would be. Without getting into brand wars and camera maker loyalty, I am particularly keen to see what Nikon will announce. They’ve been on a roll lately with the D500 and the D5 and considering that the D810 and D750 starting to look a little old, an announcement might be on the cards.
I received a very generous and cool present from a good friend of mine for my birthday last year. It's a Russian Fed 2 range finder camera. My friend is a collector and I've always loved these old Russian cameras, so I was chuffed to get my hands on one.
It never ceases to amaze me the difference a good lens can make to your image quality. I know this sounds like an obvious thing, but until you've used some high end glass, you don't really know just how much of a difference it can make. There's a lot of misinformation out there on the internet (shocker) when it comes to what makes a good lens, or even the importance of good quality optics to begin with. One well known and somewhat infamous blogger, has even stated that the lens actually makes no difference in terms of image quality. Nothing could be further from the truth.
I've been using a defunct Pantone Huey Pro to calibrate my display, for pretty much as long as I can remember. While the device hasn't been officially supported for a while, it had continued to function until recently. Since El Capitan came out, the software hasn't been working properly, and my display has been slowly drifting. On top of that, somewhere along the way, the gamma got screwed up, which I didn't realise. So the upshot of this is that my screen was too bright, and so I was outputting my images too dark.
I recently decided to get a new camera strap for my old film camera. By new, I really mean: "one in the first place" as it has been without a strap for some time since I "borrowed" the one that came with it for something else. I wanted something that fitted the retro nature of the camera, and I also wanted something fairly minimal. So I decided to try and have a look on Etsy, and what I found was a lovely piece of hand made craftsmanship.
If you're curious to see how the new Sony A6300 images look , you can now try them out for yourself. Both Lightroom and Capture One have added raw support for the new camera, and there are now a couple of places where you can download sample raw files. Here are the samples that I've found so far...
I know I'm getting a bit carried away with posts on the upcoming Sony A6300, but I'm really excited about the potential of this camera. In particular, I'm really looking forward to the video features of the new Sony. On paper it sounds impressive, but now there's some real world testing and footage out there too, and it doesn't disappoint.
When I was writing my epic three part Sony A6000 review, for whatever reason I left out any mention of the two best lenses that I have for the system. They are the Sigma 30mm and 19mm e-mount lenses. I’m not really sure how I managed to forget about these when I was writing the piece, but anyway, I’m making up for it now by writing this mini-review of the two lenses.
One of the biggest complaints that users of Sony’s Aps-c format E-mount cameras such as the A6000 have is the lack of good, inexpensive prime lenses. In my recent long term review of the A6000 I made this point, and I wished for an equivalent to Fuji’s excellent 35mm f/1.4. In fact, the lack of a good fast native prime for the format has been a real issue. Fortunately Sigma has just addressed that gap in the lineup with the launch of the new 30mm f/1.4mm prime lens for e-mount (and m43).
Since I posted my initial thoughts on the A6300 last week, there’s been a lot more information coming out about the upcoming camera. There are two things in particular that I missed when the announcement first came out, so I’m going to talk about them briefly now.