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7.31.2014

Still Searching...

Okay I flip-flopped again. I love the RX100 II, but let's be honest, I hated the control ring on the front.That's not a knock against the RX100 II, I hate all front control rings on cameras. The RX100 II's sensor size gives it great images verses a point and shoot, but my f900EXR is more versatile; smaller, bigger zoom range, and more expendable and loanable because of price. I am really trying to whittle it down to 3 bodies. At first I was really down on interchangeable lenses for more than one camera brand, but I have been looking at m43rds cameras and the lens selection is not too expensive and they are compact. In fact, a m43rds camera with the 14-140 or 150 lens is about the size of the RX10. Of course the RX10's glass is incredible I'm told (have not tested it yet), and it is weather sealed so it might have it's own place for bad weather,  but it is 2 big to really be low key and shoot regularly in the city or on my train stop shoots.

Since I decided on the D6 I have put the E-620 on eBay, so that one will be gone soon. I have ordered the E-PL5 and the GX7, and will evaluate them. I am starting to now feel that my final keepers might be the f900EXR, Gx7, RX10 & D6. I am still on the fence about the RX10, and this weekend will tell the tale. I will test it out this weekend, but though having an all in one weather sealed body is enticing, when would I use it? Right now I have three slots open:

  1. Always with me; tiny, light, versatile and I can hand to someone else to use. Best image quality for versatility, size, and price.
  2. City shooting or anyplace where I want image quality but a big body camera will look out of place, draw undesired attention, or where they are okay with allowing point & shoots, but not big DSLRs.
  3. Pure image quality: in places that I can carry and use big gear, mostly for state & national parks, Landscapes, pre-arranged portraits, and studio-style & artistic projects.
There may be a 4th slot for an extreme travel and action camera, which is where the RX10, a weather sealed m43rds, or a Canon 60D might slip in.

7.29.2014

Thoughts Canon G1X Mark II


  1. Heavy, but I like the weight; it makes it feel like it's not a toy. It's built like a tank; they say the the US version was supposed to come without a deep grip (mine had both the shallow and the deep grip). With the weight I am not sure how the shallow grip would have worked out.
  2. Don't trust the LCD; the LCD was pretty inaccurate as far as my exposure, I would definitely recommend using the histogram to see where you are especially in contrasty situations. It does not handle contrast very well.
  3. I have very big hands so before the control wheel fad took over I could reach all the controls on my camera with one hand. Now with all these control wheels (RX10, RX100 Canon G!X II), it's become a 2-handed process. I hope control wheels on the front die out soon...
  4. Closeup focusing still finicky, but much more possible with the macro mode. When to switch over is the thing you have to get used to, as it really is not that close when you are on the long end of the zoom.
  5. I also miss fully articulated LCDs, the flip ones all seem to stick and take a concerted effort to pry loose and then twist to your desired angle. the side flip-screens just worked, and did not have to be pried/jiggled loose. They also had the added benefit of being able to flip backwards and protect your LCD. This is for all recent cameras, not just the Canon.
  6. Image quality is very nice, but it's started to become disappointing in the days of 20MP 1 inch sensors that you only get 13MP of detail on a sensor 2x the size.
  7. Not for motion, but I knew that and was not really expecting much trying to catch moving subjects.
  8. Nice implementation of changing your focus point, but the movement of the focus point per click of the directional button is a little small; it can take a while to move it across the screen. I do like how a long press of he focus point button brings it back to center, though.
It's a good camera as far as image quality and sensor size, but everything else takes a backseat to it's competitors. Not really versatile or fast to adapt to different needs like the RX100. I have to admit I was hoping it would surprise me and pull ahead of the RX100 which is my favorite camera of the ones I have tested right now. Through all of this I am really still a Canon Fanboy at heart, and would love to go back to Canon for something.

PROS
  1. Very nice image quality
  2. Solid Build
  3. Can get Bokeh pretty easily
  4. Good battery life
  5. Nice focusing point implementation
CONS
  1. Slow to configure
  2. Close focusing is finicky, but much better
  3. Not for one-handed operation
  4. Average detail resolved in images
  5. Contrasty viewfinder

7.28.2014

Restarting the Restart

Well it's late at night and I have just rethought my whole portability over image quality thing. I have been looking at the images of the smaller sensor cameras, and they are just not as good as my 5D. That's okay if the 5D and gear will be a problem, but many times it is not, and it's those times that it will niggle at me that I don't have more power to use. Sooo... my thinking has changed. I will get a 6D (just ordered one), and a 60D for back-up (at some point). Then I will use my 6D when size is not an issue like landscape, and national park visits. I will use my RX10 (the plan so far) when size and versatility matter, and the Rx100 when stealth is needed. My f900EXR will be my loaner and all around emergency camera. That should do it. I will take the RX10 out next, and sell all the others on eBay.

Unless I change my Mind ;)

Furthermore, I will begin giving myself a 200.00 a month photography hobby budget, so that I stick to my guns, or at least give everything a try first (although if I sell something I am allowed to reinvest the money in Photography).

Poor Stylus 1

The poor Stylus 1 just seems to be the camera caught in the middle in my camera tests. I have not used it yet, but it's already getting squeezed out. I loved the RX100 and all the Stylus has over the RX100 is the zoom range. It has a constant 2.8 aperture, but with the smaller sensor that's a wash also. It loses out to the F900EXR, because the F900EXR has a better zoom range, same size sensor, and although it does not have an f/2.8 aperature, it's size makes it very convenient and it's price means I wont stress loaning it out or letting someone else use it, especially a child.
I already put it up on eBay, but pulled it down because of second thoughts. Before I put it back up on eBay, I will at least take it out for a shoot to see if it makes me change my mind about it verses the RX100 or the f900EXR.

7.27.2014

Sunday Photo

Elk Neck-81

Next up; G1X Mk II

Next to try out is the G1X II. I will probably save the RX10 for last as I know what the sensor puts out because of my experience with the RX100. I have seen mixed reviews for the G1X, good and bad, and really have to see for myself. I owned the first G1X and although it got okay reviews, I loved the image quality, and only got rid of it because I had the NEX 6, which did it all; image quality AND versatility. I thought Sony would flesh out it's NEX lens line-up, which it never did, which is why I left the NEX's alone.