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Author Topic: New travel/street camera  (Read 9480 times)
douglas frost
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« Reply #20 on: January 06, 2014, 08:10:56 PM »
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Just after I posted earlier, the announcements of new cameras and lenses started and I'm sure there are more to come, so I think I'll let the dust settle a bit and see if any of the new offerings appeal.

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Michael N. Meyer
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« Reply #21 on: January 06, 2014, 10:48:13 PM »
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I've got a Nex7, an x100 and an X-Pro1.

The two Fujis are a joy to use and fall to hand nicely. Both travel well. Prints from either hang easily with prints from my FF DSLR. I'll also echo Alan's appreciation of continued support via firmware updates.

The Nex7 is one of the worst camera interfaces I've ever used. As convenient as the Tri-Navi controls should be, I find them confusing in use. The menus are a disaster. To top it all off, I dislike the output from the NEX7's sensor. It may work for some, but for me purchasing it was a definite mistake. I agree that the shop is probably pushing it on you because they want to clear older stock.
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douglas frost
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« Reply #22 on: January 06, 2014, 11:05:31 PM »
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Thanks Michael - great to get input from someone with both systems (but everyone's input is greatly appreciated!).
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David Sutton
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« Reply #23 on: January 06, 2014, 11:58:44 PM »
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Hello Douglas. Just to throw a possible spanner in the works, how anonymous do you want to be?
Because if you want to look like just another tourist you may want something silent and without a viewfinder. I've noticed that as soon as I hold a camera up to my eye, people look.
In which case, any of the high end point and shoots would probably do.
While I like my Fuji X-E2 I'm also buying an X-M1. I dislike having just a flip out screen, but when holding it at waist level and looking down to photograph I've found I'm almost invisible. Or I just wave it at arms' length in the general direction of my subject. No one is usually bothered by some tourist taking a few holiday snaps.
David
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douglas frost
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« Reply #24 on: January 07, 2014, 12:10:04 AM »
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Good point David. There are certainly times when it is good not to hold a camera up and that was one of the things that appealed about the Nex7 and Nex6, in that they had both the EVF and the tiltable screen.
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Manoli
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« Reply #25 on: January 07, 2014, 04:05:17 AM »
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… rumors of NEX's demise have been greatly exaggerated: Sony Unveils Lightweight A5000 Mirrorless Compact System Camera with Wi-Fi

If you paid attention to the announcement you linked to, you will notice that the new cameras carry the model designation 'ILCE-' , in keeping with the new A7- series, all E/FE mount compatible.   All NEX models carry, unsurprisingly, the prefix 'NEX-'.

The 'end-of-life' designation was not a rumour but rather a SONY Global HQ announcement.  Anyway, the message is clear – don't hold your breath for any future NEX firmware/feature upgrades.
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Jim Pascoe
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« Reply #26 on: January 07, 2014, 04:28:30 AM »
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Hi Douglas

If you want a small, compact, APS sensor camera, have you considered the Ricoh GR?  It is tiny, silent and produces very high quality images.  Of course like all cameras it is a compromise - namely fixed 28mm equivalent lens and no built in viewfinder.  However the last limitation for me is partly overcome by using an excellent clip on optical viewfinder which is great for framing quick shots in the street.  For anything more exacting I would generally use the live view screen.  I know you said you do not like add-on viewfinders, but even with it attached (which it always is for me) the camera is still very easy to slip into a jacket pocket and is very discrete.
For reference my other main camera is a 1DS3.  I also have Panasonic GH2 and range of lenses, which sort of straddles the usage between the Ricoh and Canons.

Jim
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douglas frost
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« Reply #27 on: January 07, 2014, 04:33:52 AM »
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Thanks Jim, but a fixed 28mm equivalent is too wide for me for what I want to do with it.
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Jim Pascoe
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« Reply #28 on: January 07, 2014, 05:56:05 AM »
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Thanks Jim, but a fixed 28mm equivalent is too wide for me for what I want to do with it.

Yes, compromises, compromises - it's always the same with cameras - and bicycles, and cars too - they all have their specialised niches.  Lots of good all-rounders but that means you need a cupboard full (or garage).  Not sure if I have more cameras or bicycles!

Jim
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BJL
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« Reply #29 on: January 07, 2014, 10:54:23 AM »
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If you paid attention to the announcement you linked to, you will notice that the new cameras carry the model designation 'ILCE-' , in keeping with the new A7- series, all E/FE mount compatible.   All NEX models carry, unsurprisingly, the prefix 'NEX-'.
As fas as I can tell, this is simply a renaming: having abandoned all bodies with mirrors, Sony is now using the naming "alpha"  or "A" and "ILCE" for all its interchangeable lens cameras. (Aside: given that "alpha" originally referred to the SLR lens mount inherited from Minolta, this is a bit confusing!)

I see nothing in this name change that suggests any end of support, so I think you are overly pessimistic with this:
... the message is clear – don't hold your breath for any future NEX firmware/feature upgrades.
« Last Edit: January 07, 2014, 11:00:49 AM by BJL » Logged
Deep
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« Reply #30 on: January 07, 2014, 01:04:37 PM »
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As I read what your needs are and what you use as your main camera, an obvious choice for a light travel travel camera comes to mind.  It's one that frequently gets bashed on the internet by people who don't understand it but it must be near perfect for your needs.  Of course, I am talking about the Canon G1X.  I have used one for around two years  It is so good that I have realised that I use it in preference to my DSLR, even when I have both cameras with me.  Part of that is laziness but it shows how good the output of the G1X is.

I think you really should try one.  The camera compares in size to the Fuji X100 and is considerably more compact than a Sony NEX7.  The lens covers a super-useful range and is truly outstanding, being as good as any "L" zoom (and better than some) and way better than any NEX zoom.  The sensor is also really nice but you can't leave it to the camera's jpeg engine.  A simple preset in Lightroom on import and I find the files are clean, very detailed (I often gasp when I zoom in, true story) and have nice tonal transitions and good dynamic range.  And the autofocus seems bullet-proof and dead accurate, even in poor light.

Ok, no electronic viewfinder and the optical one is a bit pessimistic (you find yourself cropping a bit until you learn it), and the close-focus can be annoying (unless you programme a position on the mode dial to keep in the close focus mode) but those drawbacks have not proven to be an issue at all for me.  On the other hand, it will use your Canon flashes and the interface will feel familiar.

I use my G1X as a "bush" camera (I'm an ecologist by trade).  I am lucky in that my work takes me to some beautiful places but they are often quite dark and the terrain is rugged.  On top of my work gear, the last thing I want is a heavy camera but I also want one which can take exhibition quality photos.  The G1X fills the role very well!
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Don
BJL
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« Reply #31 on: January 07, 2014, 01:51:45 PM »
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There are certainly times when it is good not to hold a camera up and that was one of the things that appealed about the Nex7 and Nex6, in that they had both the EVF and the tiltable screen.
Yes, I too am very happy to have both the "eye-level" and "waist-level" composing options (in my case, with an EM5.)

Sorry, but I cannot resist asking why you have ruled out the EM5, given that it with suitable selections from the MFT lens system seem to cover your criteria.  If it is just the idea that APS-C is the smallest sensor size that will give acceptable image quality, then I suggest you test that in practice when you try a few cameras out.
« Last Edit: January 07, 2014, 02:21:12 PM by BJL » Logged
Telecaster
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« Reply #32 on: January 07, 2014, 03:28:31 PM »
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My approach when looking at various rangefinder-style digicams has been to see how close I can get to the classic Zeiss (Contax) & Leica focal length sets. 21, 35, 50, 85/90 & 135mm. Now this is just me...I'm very familiar with these FLs. Fuji has most of this covered with its 14, 23, 35 & (upcoming) 56mm lenses. m43, specifically the Panasonic GX7, has it all covered with 12, 17, 25, 45 & 75mm. (If you want you can substitute a 20mm for both the 17 & 25mms, à la the Leica CL.) In this case we're not quite as wide at the short end and also a little narrower at the long end. Note that with the GX7 you can articulate the rear LCD screen and the EVF.

Pick your poison!

-Dave-
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douglas frost
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« Reply #33 on: January 07, 2014, 03:51:46 PM »
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I haven't really ruled out the EM5, I just hadn't really considered it (if that makes sense...). I think part of what I'm looking for in this camera is a slightly different 'picture-taking' experience, and in my head (swirling around with all the other crap) is the thought that I don't want a camera that looks like a dslr - eg. Sony A7, Olympus EM1, EM5 etc. All of this may change as I keep looking at different cameras and thinking about what I really want to do with it (as opposed to using the 1dx system). I'm not in a rush, so I will definitely try as many options as I can.

Realistically, there are so many cameras/lenses available that can give fantastic results in the right hands, that for me it comes down to how I feel about using a particular camera. As we all know, on web forums you can find enough people who love or hate any particular camera, either the files that it produces or the way it handles or operates, so it often distills to how the photographer relates to the camera.

Jim made the analogy to bicycles (of which I share the passion) and more often than not, it's how a particular bike makes you feel - it may be how it handles, the colour, the stickers - the important thing is when you look at it, it makes you want to jump on and go for a ride.
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Manoli
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« Reply #34 on: January 07, 2014, 04:19:28 PM »
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Realistically, there are so many cameras/lenses available ... that for me it comes down to how I feel about using a particular camera … so it often distills to how the photographer relates to the camera.

Nail on the head ..
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BJL
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« Reply #35 on: January 07, 2014, 06:25:48 PM »
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I think part of what I'm looking for in this camera is a slightly different 'picture-taking' experience, and in my head (swirling around with all the other crap) is the thought that I don't want a camera that looks like a dslr - eg. Sony A7, Olympus EM1, EM5 etc.  ... there are so many cameras/lenses available that can give fantastic results in the right hands, that for me it comes down to how I feel about using a particular camera.
I have to agree with all that! For me too, the "SLR-ish" EM1 body design is a bit too bulky for what I often want to do (carry a small, light kit with small, light lenses), even if it is a good fit to adaptor mounted 4/3 SLR lenses and the new f/2.8 MFT zoom lenses. In comparison, the Panasonic GX7 seems a very rational, clean, compact body design (rather "NEX-ish") while offering a full array of composing tools, and sensor-based stabilization (Panasonic got there at last!). It is strange that so few people in this forum seems to use the GX7, and unfortunately, the poor selection of photographic shops around here do not give me the opportunity to try it out.
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JayWPage
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« Reply #36 on: January 07, 2014, 07:47:06 PM »
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Last year I bought a Sony RX1 which I took to Europe in the fall. I found this to be a very versatile and customizable camera which was a real joy to shoot. The sensor is excellent both in dynamic range and in low light performance, and the 24MP gives one plenty of opportunities to crop. It's small enough to carry in a fanny pack and when the shutter noise is turned off it's an amazing stealth camera. I use the accessory EVF and I'm able to quickly compose and focus shots. Often I've got the picture before anyone even notices that I've taken it.
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Telecaster
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« Reply #37 on: January 07, 2014, 09:12:28 PM »
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...the Panasonic GX7 seems a very rational, clean, compact body design (rather "NEX-ish") while offering a full array of composing tools, and sensor-based stabilization (Panasonic got there at last!). It is strange that so few people in this forum seem to use the GX7, and unfortunately, the poor selection of photographic shops around here do not give me the opportunity to try it out.

Despite the fact that it's not as robust as the Olympus E-M1—more like a slightly smaller Fuji X-E1/2—the GX7 is my favorite m43 camera. The EVF is in the "right" place, the upper left corner, and there are no SLR pretensions. If anything it's a little too small...my right thumb sometimes hits the Disp. and Fn1 buttons by accident. Other than that it doesn't get in my way at all. With the 20mm lens mounted I can carry it in a jacket pocket. Focusing is fast, the buttons respond fast, image quality is more than good enough for a crisp 15x20" print & way more than good enough for future display on a 55" 4k TV.

Hope you get the chance to give this camera a spin.

-Dave-
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RichDesmond
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« Reply #38 on: January 08, 2014, 12:45:26 PM »
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Another m4/3 option, if you want a really small setup, is the new GM-1. It's tiny and the 12-32 lens that comes with it is getting good reviews.
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JV
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« Reply #39 on: January 09, 2014, 07:32:56 PM »
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B&H has a pretty good deal on the NEX-7 right now:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1006332-REG/sony_nex7k_b2bdl_alpha_nex_7_digital_camera.html
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