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Archive 2012 · What to do?
  
 
ausemmao
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p.1 #1 · What to do?


This is as much a thinking out loud thread as anything else.

What I want from a camera system (that seems to be the phrase people have latched onto to describe the constellation of cameras + lenses +accessories) in no particular order:

Fast, accurate focus
A selection of high quality lenses at most focal lengths, biased towards wide and specialty (T/S, macro) (I'm almost the anti-Rodolfo )
As small as possible (I'm indifferent to weight, but volume is something I'd like to minimise. People don't notice whether you're shooting a heavy camera or not, they do notice a big camera. Also, small size lets me pack more.)
Fast autofocus, especially in tracking mode, or at least a very good way of manually focusing.
I don't care whether it has OVF, EVF or live view only as long as it's fast, clear and doesnt get in the way.
Great IQ

I've got a decent (not huge, but it does the job nicely) Nikon kit and am on a DX body.

My biggest gripes with Nikon DX is that the equipment is bigger than I'd like, and there is neither a 16mm f/1.4 or 2 nor a 16mm PC-E available. Going D600 or D800 (choosing between the two has its own questions, but that's little details) fixes the second problem, gives me a little more low light performance (I apparently live either at ISO100 or 6400), will also trigger a 35/2 or 1.4 purchase, but makes the first problem worse.

I'm vastly simplifying the issue, but as a condensed problem it's fairly accurate for me.

The mirrorless systems currently have terrible continuous AF (this will change, the issue is when), a Leica M ain't happening till I get much better off or I get really lucky with a commission somehow), the RX-1 needs decent continuous AF (interchangeable lenses would be nice, but given 90% of my non sports shooting is at 24 or 35 effective, I could live with that), and everything else is as big as Nikon.

And in all honesty, I quite like using Nikon equipment.

So what to do? It feels off to buy a bigger camera when I want smaller. I could stay put, but then I continue to miss out on the wide shots I want, I could eat the continuous AF and go mirrorless (very remote). A lot of the size issue disappears if there's waist level finder ability (I think they're wonderful things, but a digital WLF solution is just a little out of my reach).




Oct 03, 2012 at 03:08 PM
Gregstx
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p.1 #2 · What to do?


ausemmao wrote:
My biggest gripes with Nikon DX is that the equipment is bigger than I'd like, and there is neither a 16mm f/1.4 or 2 nor a 16mm PC-E available. Going D600 or D800 (choosing between the two has its own questions, but that's little details) fixes the second problem, gives me a little more low light performance (I apparently live either at ISO100 or 6400), will also trigger a 35/2 or 1.4 purchase, but makes the first problem worse.


While the D600 is slightly larger and heavier than current DX bodies, it isn't a huge difference when compared to the D7000, for example. Every camera choice is a compromise, it seems. The D600 may deliver the best bang for the buck.



Oct 03, 2012 at 05:18 PM
MalbikEndar
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p.1 #3 · What to do?


Easy answer. It's almost unimaginable that a tilt-shift will ever be available for anything other than full frame. Buy the FF of your choice.


Oct 03, 2012 at 05:49 PM
DTOB
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p.1 #4 · What to do?


I don't have any problems shooting a big camera in public personally. I shoot with a gripped D700 and a gripped F100. People take no more notice than when I shoot with my F3 and FE/FE2. Actually, a lot of my subject matter notices the older cameras more than the new. It helps to use smaller MF primes in my experience.

Can I ask what you are shooting where the size of the camera is becoming a distraction? Or are you worried about being a target for theft?



Oct 03, 2012 at 05:49 PM
 

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ausemmao
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p.1 #5 · What to do?


Gregstx wrote:
While the D600 is slightly larger and heavier than current DX bodies, it isn't a huge difference when compared to the D7000, for example. Every camera choice is a compromise, it seems. The D600 may deliver the best bang for the buck.


This is true. It has to be borne in mind that I consider the D7000 itself to be too large, though

MalbikEndar wrote:
Easy answer. It's almost unimaginable that a tilt-shift will ever be available for anything other than full frame. Buy the FF of your choice.


You have a point here - one I've been thinking myself but hoping is not the case. But then I suppose the biggest issue with a 16mm PC-E isn't so much that the DX market is small, but that FX users would bring the wrath of hell down on Nikon for not making the image circle big enough to cover FX shifted (which does help your point)!

DTOB wrote:
I don't have any problems shooting a big camera in public personally. I shoot with a gripped D700 and a gripped F100. People take no more notice than when I shoot with my F3 and FE/FE2. Actually, a lot of my subject matter notices the older cameras more than the new. It helps to use smaller MF primes in my experience.

Can I ask what you are shooting where the size of the camera is becoming a distraction? Or are you worried about being a target for theft?


When it's semi candid people photography, quite close up. I take my camera almost everywhere with me.

I find people take more notice even with a D7000 than with the F3, let alone something like a D800! I shoot at 24 and 35mm a lot, and fill the frame doing it - so being that close to a person, unless they're used to having their picture taken regularly, they react very differently to a DSLR + big prime than to a P+S or even a WLF equipped camera. It's as much about the loss of eye contact and the presence of the lens as it is the DSLR size itself.

I agree that smaller primes definitely make a difference. However, there isn't a small fast 16 or 24mm. There is the AI-s 24/2, but that isn't optically as good and is a full stop slower than the 24/1.4, which is probably my favourite lens.

It may be that wishing for the lenses I'd like to be delivered in DX or for one of the mirrorless systems to become as good as a DSLR is tilting at windmills in the short term, at least. The mirrorless thing is the solution that I'd like ideally. Given the size of the Leica 24/1.4 and the ability to adapt Nikon lenses to it, that style of solution seems optimal.

If I suppose that's not going to happen any time soon, then the question becomes one of perhaps getting 2 systems and accepting that I'll have more redundancy in my equipment than I'd like.

One of the issues with the D600 vs the D800 is that the the 24 PC-E might only just get full upwards shift. 10mm was ok, I didn't try 11mm as it looked as if it might hit the flash housing and it wasn't my camera, whereas full shift is fine on the D800. If anyone has the PC-E + D600 and wouldn't mind checking for sure, that would be grand

The other issue is AF coverage - I find performance outside 3D tracking (which I only rarely use and is more a luxury than a necessity, and still isn't 100% unless you have a monochromatic background) is very similar between the two, until you go past the edge of the D600's coverage

On the other hand, the D600 is a decent amount smaller, though probably not enough to change people's reactions to it.



Oct 03, 2012 at 06:25 PM
Gregstx
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p.1 #6 · What to do?


Re: What people notice.

We have a fairly large harbor here and for some reason (homeland security?) I am always hassled when I show up with my DSLR. I usually have my 18-200 VR I or my 28-300 VR II mounted. "You can't take pictures here." A friend (D300 with 18-70 I think) and I (D7000 with 18-200) show up to take some pics of a ship entering the harbor. I told him about always getting hassled by security. He said he shot there often and never had a problem. Well, sure enough, as soon as we get out of the truck, security comes over and jumps all over my case. In the meantime, he is out snapping pics all over the place and NO ONE ever confronts him. What people notice is the lens.



Oct 04, 2012 at 04:25 AM
Neddie Seagoon
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p.1 #7 · What to do?


I don't know much about Canon, but a friend of mine just bought a Rebel T4i. Nice little camera. It's got a flip up LCD so waist level shooting is possible and Canon makes a few tilt shift lenses. Should be just the ticket for discreet street shooting.

Just a thought.



Oct 04, 2012 at 06:03 AM





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