Personal gear review

Location
Switzerland
Real Name
Matt
And coming back, a bit, to the original topic of this thread. I still have too many cameras/lenses in my possession. I like the idea taking pictures with the other stuff I have, but I almost 100% shoot only with 5D IV and 50mm F1.2L. Only when a bit more discreet photographing is appreciated, I grab the Oly E-M5.2 with 14-40 F2.8 (and miss instantly the workhorse when starting to really take pictures with Oly and more when post-processing. Although I've found that DxO does the trick for Olympus Raw and I get mostly acceptable result with that way)

I'm sentimental when thinking my cameras and should I sell some of those. What say you, keep or cash:
- Leica M8
- Sony RX100.4
- Nikon Df
- Olympus OM-D E-M5.2
- Olympus PEN E-P5 with VF-4 (in my wife's possession, nothing to say here 🙄)
and some good glass for all of them.

What I could sometimes use are 85mm for Canon and versatile all around zoom also for Canon.
Entirely my take (YMMV!), but here goes:
  • Alongside the 5D IV, I don't see any real use for the Df - so that would be my first "victim". Not that I dislike the camera, but even if it's small for a DSLR, it's still a pretty big camera you won't usually pick over the 5D IV just for its form factor. And I'm sure the 5D IV outperforms the Df by some margin and feels more comfortable in the hand, even with the 50mm f/1.2 L attached. When I pondered my options, I picked the D750 over the Df for various reasons, handling being a prominent one (even though I would like the classic controls, they're certainly not a necessity, and they don't make me take better images).
  • The second possibility would be to let go of the RX100 IV if you don't use it often - but in my experience, it pays to own at least one pocketable camera. If it's basically a drawer queen, I'd move it on.
  • I see the E-M5 II as a workhorse, especially with the 12-40mm f/2.8 - I'd keep it to have a smaller, yet sufficiently competent compact setup with a zoom. Especially when compared to FF systems, the size advantage is considerable. I often compare the E-M5 III to other cameras I have, and it still seems one of the most sensible packages on the market - whenever I think about getting out of :mu43:, this fact intervenes. Arguably, some even prefer the haptics of the E-M5 II over the III - so, if I owned that camera, I'd be really hesitant to sell it. And while the sensor in the E-M5 III is a bit better, it's not worlds better.
  • The E-P5 is going to stay as far as I understand - and it's a nice enough camera.
  • Last, but not least, the M8 is just what it is - I personally would never let go of that camera as long as it worked. It's one of my all-time favourite cameras as far as the shooting experience goes, and I still do like the results. I wouldn't replace it with another one, though - they *do* age ... To let you gauge my appreciation for this camera: I just ordered a brand new battery for it (the two "no-name" ones I bought earlier don't cut it - they're so bad they'll get recycled!).
M.
 
This is the sneaky one because it started out as people talking about maybe trimming back the kit. It has become the intermittent “second hand GAS” thread as time passed.
I have made my way back to the original intention of this thread. Currently my kit is very minimal. Consisting of the X-T3/50mm f2 and x100F. At the end of May I will have the 18mm 1.4. If needed on occasion I can borrow the 50-230 from the kit we put together for my son. With said 50-230 eventually being sold and replaced with a 70-300.
And coming back, a bit, to the original topic of this thread. I still have too many cameras/lenses in my possession. I like the idea taking pictures with the other stuff I have, but I almost 100% shoot only with 5D IV and 50mm F1.2L. Only when a bit more discreet photographing is appreciated, I grab the Oly E-M5.2 with 14-40 F2.8 (and miss instantly the workhorse when starting to really take pictures with Oly and more when post-processing. Although I've found that DxO does the trick for Olympus Raw and I get mostly acceptable result with that way)

I'm sentimental when thinking my cameras and should I sell some of those. What say you, keep or cash:
- Leica M8
- Sony RX100.4
- Nikon Df
- Olympus OM-D E-M5.2
- Olympus PEN E-P5 with VF-4 (in my wife's possession, nothing to say here 🙄)
and some good glass for all of them.

What I could sometimes use are 85mm for Canon and versatile all around zoom also for Canon.
I would sell everything on that list. Then get the 85mm and zoom you want for the Canon system and enjoy shooting.
 

Biro

Hall of Famer
Location
Jersey Shore
Real Name
Steve
$442.68 with tax and shipping to be exact. Adorama had a used body (very good) and 50 f1.8D. 12 MP is fine, but this will be the second biggest and heaviest camera I have ever had.
So has the D700 arrived yet? If so, any impressions? I've noticed D800's going for not much more. D610's, too. And I must admit I'm pretty impressed that a brand-new Z5 body can be had for just under a grand right now.
 

drd1135

Zen Snapshooter
Location
SW Virginia
Real Name
Steve
I posted a shot on the pic-a-day thread. I’ve had trouble with the lens aperture blades sticking at f22 but I have another coming. I have to go through those menus and figure out Nikon nomenclature. Physically, it’s a beast compared to my other cameras. Still, I had forgotten how satisfying a well made DSLR shutter release can feel. I really should read the 472 page manual but I think I’ll explore the camera experimentally and use the book as a reference and not a piece of literature.
 
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Good analysis Matt, thanks for writing.

I already realised when writing my message that odds to sell anything are quite low. The only camera overlapping with another is Df, and there I have sentimental bond to that camera and I need it to use my manual Nikon lenses (with digital camera).

All the other have certain specific use case, or value. The question is more now between two Olympus cameras. Different form factor, different build quality, not much difference in image quality. Funny enough, my wife said when asked that she actually prefers middle hump camera, as ex Olympus OM2 shooter 🤣

  • Alongside the 5D IV, I don't see any real use for the Df - so that would be my first "victim". Not that I dislike the camera, but even if it's small for a DSLR, it's still a pretty big camera you won't usually pick over the 5D IV just for its form factor. And I'm sure the 5D IV outperforms the Df by some margin and feels more comfortable in the hand, even with the 50mm f/1.2 L attached. When I pondered my options, I picked the D750 over the Df for various reasons, handling being a prominent one (even though I would like the classic controls, they're certainly not a necessity, and they don't make me take better images).
  • The second possibility would be to let go of the RX100 IV if you don't use it often - but in my experience, it pays to own at least one pocketable camera. If it's basically a drawer queen, I'd move it on.
  • I see the E-M5 II as a workhorse, especially with the 12-40mm f/2.8 - I'd keep it to have a smaller, yet sufficiently competent compact setup with a zoom. Especially when compared to FF systems, the size advantage is considerable. I often compare the E-M5 III to other cameras I have, and it still seems one of the most sensible packages on the market - whenever I think about getting out of :mu43:, this fact intervenes. Arguably, some even prefer the haptics of the E-M5 II over the III - so, if I owned that camera, I'd be really hesitant to sell it. And while the sensor in the E-M5 III is a bit better, it's not worlds better.
  • The E-P5 is going to stay as far as I understand - and it's a nice enough camera.
  • Last, but not least, the M8 is just what it is - I personally would never let go of that camera as long as it worked. It's one of my all-time favourite cameras as far as the shooting experience goes, and I still do like the results. I wouldn't replace it with another one, though - they *do* age ... To let you gauge my appreciation for this camera: I just ordered a brand new battery for it (the two "no-name" ones I bought earlier don't cut it - they're so bad they'll get recycled!).
M.
 

agentlossing

All-Pro
Location
S. Oregon Coast (the Northernmost-Cal of them All)
Real Name
Andrew Lossing
Periodic check-in - hey doc (or docs), here's how my gear issues are coming along.

I have the couple OM-1 bodies and the two lenses that came along with them (24mm f2.8 and 50mm f1.8) which I bought in a paroxysm of longing for the OM-1 I returned to the shop for its aperture/metering issues. I've developed both rolls I shot with it, and while one of those I estimated exposure without a battery, the other, which I used the meter (mostly) for, proved that the meter wasn't reading aperture correctly. There are some very overexposed frames. So I made the right choice sending that one back. Almost through the first roll in the better of the two replacement bodies, we will see if things are functioning properly (though the meter readings so far seem good enough based on my judgment of light). Hopefully that will go well. The second OM-1 body has some of the pentaprism coating eaten away by foam that's turned into goop. I've heard the pentaprisms can be replaced from cheaper OM bodies, so I may get daring and try that myself. One of the bodies had the focusing screen I like, which was in the first OM-1 - it's the one without a split image, just the focusing matte pattern inside a center circle. I cleaned everything up and moved that screen into the one I'm using. It's a nice little package, I can't wait to see what the photos look like with these two nice little Zuiko lenses.

The above has somewhat satisfied my desire to try out more lenses on my Bessa-T, since it's so much easier to get an SLR lens and not have to worry about finding an affordable hot shoe finder to go with it. If there's anything more annoying than the increasing prices for M and LTM lenses, it's having to tack another $100-200 on top just for framelines. The T, with the 35mm Skopar, is just such a functional little street machine. I have shot it enough to know just what it can do, and it's not going anywhere. If someone dangled a Bessa R2 or something in front of my face I might switch, but I have a suspicion that I'd miss the ease of scale focusing and the huge rangefinder visibility of the T.

I'm back into shooting more with the GRIII, as I've noted before it's kind of easy to get out of the "mindset" required to use that camera to its potential, but I am more or less back "in" the mindset.

The Pentax KP, I have finally realized or acknowledged, is actually fairly small with a prime attached. I just needed to get over the initial bulk of that K-mount box, but the usability and haptics are very enjoyable. I have to be intentional about using it with the Sigma 17-50mm f2.8, not only because it turns it into a hulking and heavy brute, but because that lens produces a lot of green and purple fringing sometimes. It needs a desktop edit to remove since it's not a native Pentax lens, which the KP can correct for automatically. But the 17-50mm was so insanely cheap for what it is, I don't feel bad having it occupy a shelf much of time, because I know it's there when I need it.

The little Ricoh 500G is the camera that's seen the least amount of use lately, through no fault of its own. The small viewfinder and somewhat dim rangefinder patch makes it less than super pleasing to shoot with, but it has size on its side, and I think, once I get the bulk roll of Foma 200 I ordered and get some rolls loaded, I'll keep the 500G in my vehicle ready to go with some B&W all the time.

I just listed off five cameras, which seems a little like too many but which I have a use for, and most of which get semi-regular use. My goal is always to have multiple cameras when and only when they offer something unique, both in the shooting and in the results they give me, so I am never met with just indecision on which camera to take out, but rather decide what kind of shooting I want to do and get the camera off the shelf that will do just that. If I could make a good case for reacquiring a small M4/3 body I might, but I keep talking myself out of that, I think rightly.
 

mike3996

Hall of Famer
Location
Finland
Fingers crossed, this week I'll be selling the G9 and PanaLeica 12-60. I'll be delivering this eulogy a bit prematurely.

Having acquired the combo just two months ago I did not really have the time or inclination to really get the camera fit in my roster. I suppose I knew really quick from the start that the camera doesn't satisfy my "manual" needs.

Perhaps the biggest potential I saw in G9 was to adapt Nikkors on it. G9's manual focus aids are pretty swell, and the EVF is nice and detailed.

Comparing the two SLR-style TTL cameras (Nikon Df and G9) side by side one makes some really interesting observations. While Df is a proper Nikon DSLR, a benchmark of sorts, G9 handily bests it in DSLR-style ergonomics (!) and usability. Df is the ergonomic black sheep of the Nikon family whereas G9 does its best to copy the white sheep of the family so we have an interesting contrast there.

Overall the Panasonic cameras have the smartest features one will expect of a Japanese camera widget. Very well working metering, good IBIS, (although not Olympus level) excellent selection and implementation of autofocus features, auto-ISO that the designers actually understand what it does: the hugest thing ever is the ability to adjust the "Auto-ISO minimum shutter speed" directly from a custom button without having to delve into the menu jungle like the rest of the cameras out there. It is precisely a wonderful Aperture/Manual mode hybrid setup that a WYSIWYG camera should have.

G9 must represent the best quality and value (at 700 € street price) but is not without flaws either. For example, zebra warnings don't work in Manual mode which is such a terrible shame. You get three control wheels that you can adapt to adjust the entire exposure triangle in M mode (really nice!), but you have to do without zebras, so the magic, suddenly gone.

And the fully articulating screen. Argh. Never again, I say! It will become a desirable feature if I decide to turn into a tripod-toting landscaper but for handheld shooting it is the absolute worst.

Image quality is sensational and the 20-megapixel chip behaves much like the one in Pen-F. The processing leaves a tremendous headroom in the files so that it's very difficult to clip highlights. I didn't go about comparing G9 against M in real world shooting situations but it should be apparent that G9 will win the full-frame Leica in every situation. At least what comes to sensor output.

But yet when I compare the G9 against the relatively poorly scoring GX80 I simply tend to prefer the sensor output of the small GX80. The grain pattern is so nice, the color is more Leica-like, the pixels look crisper. If in the future I want an SLR-style Panasonic M43 camera I will look into G80 simply because of the sensor. And of course because it'll be 450 € cheaper on the streets. I also noticed that I prefer the sparser focus selection array of GX80. The 7x7 grid instead of the 15x15 makes for quicker adjustments.

Perhaps the biggest overall problem is that G9 is too good at what it does. Using this camera really hammered it in that I like a challenge when out shooting. It was a good lesson and hopefully a notable little step in my journey.
 

gordo

Top Veteran
Location
Arizona
Real Name
Gordon
While awaiting delivery of the K-3III, taking some time to reflect.

I'll need to shoot extensively with the new body for a few days to make sure the new OVF works well with my eyes and I don't have the dreaded eye strain and headaches. I doubt I'll have any real complaints with AF after reading other users' experiences with how well it is working for them. Seems Pentax finally brought their AF into current times.

Providing the OVF works for me, initial thoughts have been to sell all Fuji except the X100F. I like that little camera. Quite a bit. But it leaves me with a non-system camera. I have added a RRS base plate, grip and bracket for tripod use and to add more gripping space for my troglodyte hands. Not as svelte a package as it was.

Size-wise, my X100F isn't that much smaller than the X-H1 now, although it is lighter. And lacks the interchangeable lenses. Minus the mirror box, the K-3III is about the same size as the X-H1. With a couple DA Limited lenses, it could a be a travel kit about the same size as I could put together with Fuji. With much better ergos than Fuji.

Secondary thought, maybe sell the X100F as well. Which will bring me back to a single system with shared bits and pieces. A couple DA Limiteds would make the smallest travel kit possible, but I could get by with current glass. Goal is to use existing Pentax glass unless there is a need for a different lens.

Either way, if the K-3III works for me I'll be cutting my gear total by one body and four lenses at a minimum. More if I also sell the X100F and find I can cull a few Pentax lenses as well.

Getting back to a single small (ish) system with great ergos (for my hands) does have a certain appeal.

Decisons, decisions... :coffee-79:
 

gordo

Top Veteran
Location
Arizona
Real Name
Gordon
After a week, I've come to a decision wrt Fuji vs Pentax for APS-C stuff.

K-3mkIII will be my APS-C workhorse. It will be November at the earliest before I can get to airshow, possibly quite a bit longer. I'll see how it does with that sometime down the road.

Not counting the X100F this will take me from 3 bodies, 12 lenses, batteries, chargers, remotes spanning two systems - down to 2 bodies sharing 7 lenses, batteries, chargers, remotes.

Final question remaining - do I keep the X100F?
 

MiguelATF

Hall of Famer
Location
Talent, Oregon (far from the madding crowd)
Real Name
Miguel Tejada-Flores
After a week, I've come to a decision wrt Fuji vs Pentax for APS-C stuff.

K-3mkIII will be my APS-C workhorse. It will be November at the earliest before I can get to airshow, possibly quite a bit longer. I'll see how it does with that sometime down the road.

Not counting the X100F this will take me from 3 bodies, 12 lenses, batteries, chargers, remotes spanning two systems - down to 2 bodies sharing 7 lenses, batteries, chargers, remotes.

Final question remaining - do I keep the X100F?

My vote would be for KEEPING the X100F.
Why?
Because it's such a cool camera. And feels good in the hand. And has a great lens. And takes superb pictures. And is relatively compact. (Confession: no, I don't own one myself. But I've played around with a friend's - and I'm also prejudiced in favor of small Fuji bodies because of own small X30, one of the nicest cameras I've ever used.)
I'm guessing it's the kind of camera you would miss, quite a bit, after selling it.

Just my .02 cents, as the saying goes.
 

gordo

Top Veteran
Location
Arizona
Real Name
Gordon
I'm leaning towards keeping it.

But the part of my brain pushing for down-sizing keeps whispering "sell"...

I would miss it though, I had the original X100, sold it because the AF was too slow for my tastes. Felt the F was a large enough improvement, and been mostly happy with it since.

My decision on it's fate will happen down the road a bit.
 

mike3996

Hall of Famer
Location
Finland
The current situation. Nikkors are "dirt cheap" and M4/3 lenses are quite expensive. Nothing new to me.

I still have the G9. I must have jinxed the sale because I delivered that eulogy prematurely. Well I am not in a rush.

I am looking to reduce my µ4/3 setup to one body and 3-4 lenses. A proportionally nice 400-670 € "investment" would remain in that system.



System
Bodies
€ in bodies
# lenses
€ in lenses
Leica M/M39​
1​
2 900,00 €​
7​
3 895,00 €​
µ4/3​
2​
956,00 €​
8​
1 717,00 €​
Nikon F​
1​
1 010,00 €​
8​
1 088,00 €​
 
I'm leaning towards keeping it.

But the part of my brain pushing for down-sizing keeps whispering "sell"...

I would miss it though, I had the original X100, sold it because the AF was too slow for my tastes. Felt the F was a large enough improvement, and been mostly happy with it since.

My decision on it's fate will happen down the road a bit.
I'm in the same boat. Leaning back towards a downsized minimalist kit, I've been considering a X-E4 as walk backup/small walk around camera. If I did that I would sell the X100F. But I really like the F for the same reasons as mentioned above.
 
So, I almost went through with this. Going so far as to put the X100F up for sale. But after thinking about it I realized I didn't really want to sell it. I quickly pulled the sale threads. Which means at some point I may have a two body kit because having a backup body is firmly ingrained in my brain hole. With 2-3 lenses. One problem with doing an extensive review is realizing how much more one used a lens, like the 90mm f2, then one realized. Surprisingly more for things and places than for people.
 

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