Camera Craziness! Why it really doesn’t matter because it is all about YOU!

craziness

Camera Craziness! Why it really doesn’t matter because it is all about YOU!

Man of man oh man! It seems that in the 1st half  of 2013 we have had some pretty cool camera releases already and all of these cameras are causing all kinds of controversies in the world of the internet. Cameras like the Ricoh GR, Nikon Coolpix A, Sony RX1R, Leica M 240, Leica X Vario, Olympus PEN E-P5, Samsung NX300 and others. Anytime a review is posted on a new camera here on my site, especially a comparison that pits camera A against camera B there is usually a firestorm of comments, many from owners of Camera A who feel slighted that camera B slightly gave more detail, better color or better bokeh. When you sit and think about it, that is sort of ridiculous. I do comparisons because I get asked to do them all of the time, and I have been doing them for years, since day one of this site! They always bring the most traffic on any given day, so it would be silly to NOT do them. SO I do. Below are links to just a slight few of my past “Crazy Comparisons”:

Crazy Comparison Random Sample  1

Crazy Comparison Random Sample 2

Crazy Comparison Random Sample 3

Crazy Comparison Random Sample 4

There are MANY more going back to the 1st weeks of this site to just yesterday and they are always fun to do but as I will say a few times in this article, it does not really matter what the results are in these comparisons.

Sony RX100 II

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To those who scream: “This is not fair” that is not true. The fact is, any comparison I do is 100% fair because all I am doing is pitting one camera against another in a certain situation. It is to see how one camera does next to another, regardless of price. Mainly to see the character and color differences. Detail is nice to have but seriously, all cameras today offer plenty of detail!

Fast Fact: Did you know that the majority of digital camera users today share their work via….the internet? Yep, resized images, even from 40MP medium format backs is not uncommon at all. The majority of Leica M users share their work via the internet! So any way you look at it, any camera today can give us plenty of detail for our needs. What does matter is the character of the sensor and lens..the bokeh, the micro contrast, the “look” of camera A vs Camera B. But these things are all going to come down to YOUR tastes for what YOU like! Some like perfection and a modern look, others like a classic look, something that is possible with a camera like the Leica M.

Leica M and 50 Summarit 1.5 (Vintage)

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Scientific Studies…

If a comparison is made using the same focal length, same aperture, same shutter speed, same subject and tripod mounted, well, that is about as scientific as it gets short of me throwing on a lab coat yet I have guys telling me “This test is not scientific”. Again, same settings, same focal length, same sensor size, same aperture, same shutter speed = scientific. Just wanted to clarify that.

If Camera B shows 5% less detail than camera A, then so what? The key thing with photography is that in reality, none of this matters. Then why do I write about it? Because everyone likes to see it anyway! Can I get 90% of a Leica Monochrom from a camera that half or 1/3 the price? Sure, but those who own and adore it and paid in full for it would never agree to that. What I do not get is the “Experience” though, as there is a unique experience when shooting a Leica RF. This leads me to why choosing a camera is all a personal experience.

Leica MM

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It’s a personal thing!

Choosing a camera should always be a personal experience. Much like buying a car, or a shirt, or a pair of shoes. Look at what is available, see what pulls at your strings, read a review or two  to see what the camera does well and if it fits your needs, then it is YOUR camera! For me, it has been the Leica M in one incarnation or another for the last 12 years. From the M7, to the M8, to the M6, to the MP to the M9 and now the M 240 I have always had the most fun shooting with an M. At the same time, I have had moments of frustrations with the M as well because when the RF goes out it is NO FUN at all to shoot. But even so, its fixable if that happens and as of today there is still nothing like shooting a Leica M. It is a beautiful camera and one that I hope lives on and on. Doest that mean no other camera can come close to it in IQ? Well, not really.

Sony RX1

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Leica Monochrom and Nikkor 35

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Now for a story that may go off topic for a bit, but it is important to show that I tell it like it is, regardless of brand. 

While the M is my tool of choice, I am not stuck to it for the name “Leica” like some Leica owners may be. Not at all. I shoot it for what it does and how it feels and what it gives me in return for the work I put into it. Since I get to use just about everything else out there and play with all of these exciting toys, many times before anyone even knows about them, I feel I have an inside scoop of sorts. I use everything that looks interesting to me and when I come across something that is special, I could care less if the brand name was “TURD”..I would use it. For example. When SLR Magic released the Hyperprime M mount 50mm T 0.95 I was blown away with it, I shot the lens well before anyone else and gave feedback to the company and they tweaked it for months until it gave me results that bettered the Leica Noctilux 0.95 at a fraction of the price. It was a masterpiece as it offered Noctilux 0.95 quality while being a tad sharper, less CA and at the expense of being LARGER and HEAVIER, which was the downside. Even so, it was much cheaper, rangefinder coupled, full on M mount and built like a tank, literally.

Leica M9 and 50 Hyperprime T 0.95

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When the pre production lens was offered up for use at one of my workshops all who tried it wanted one on the spot. Many were sold there at a deep discount and that group was the 1st to receive the official production lens. It started to gain some steam and the internet was buzzing about it, mostly in positive ways. Image sample comparison between it and the Noct were showing just what I have said about it and IMO, but some did not like this at all. Leica found out, saw the lens and one higher up at Leica told me while holding my SLR Magic “I am going to have to talk with this SLR Magic, it looks like our lens”. That was the beginning of the end. I shot the lens on a Leica Monochrom in Berlin and everyone asked me what lens I was shooting with for those images. When I would tell them they would ask me how to get one. SLR Magic started pre selling loads of lenses not because of me, but because they had a quality product that competed with the best of the German lenses.

Leica M9 with Hyperprime at ISO 2500 and T 0.95

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Well it did not take long until the owner of SLR Magic was having issues with some individuals. I will not get into it here but to me it seemed like an attack on a small company trying to get their quality product out. It was not long before these stories got around and others wanted a refund of their deposits. This forced SLR Magic to withdraw the lens from sale. Pretty sad. After that all went down I knew of 6 guys who still had their lenses and loved them but were worried about values dropping due to the negative press. They sold them even though all said it was an incredible lens without issues, mine included.

These days this lens has gone up in value due to the rarity of it. Not many made it out of the factory.

Honest is the only way  to be in life, even if it hurts

My point of this whole story is this: many come here telling me I am paid off by Leica, paid off by Sony, or paid off by Olympus simply because when I like a camera, I say it, no matter WHO makes it. If I get overly excited about a Leica M or Sony RX it is for good reason, not because I am paid off. If I say a Leica or Fuji doesnt live up to the hype, it is not because I am bashing them for no reason, it is because that is only my honest opinion.

I am an equal opportunity reviewer which is why when I thought the Leica X Vario fell short, I said so. When the M did not offer up the detail of the Sony RX1R, I showed it. When Sony released the lackluster refresh of the NEX 3, I said it was basically a lackluster re-release. When you read my site and reviews you will always get my 100% honest opinion on the gear I use and review. I can say that because of this honesty I have had two camera manufacturers STOP sending me cameras for review as they no longer want my opinion. Why? Well one company did not like one of my reviews of their product (even though I praised other models of their cameras) and the other did not like my comparisons. That is perfectly OK with me as I have many other ways to get a hold of new gear, and always do. I just feel it is sort of off that there is punishment for being honest. I have also had one company tell me if I cant give their camera a positive review they would rather I NOT review it. Crazy.

Bottom line: I have no bias whatsoever and those who think I do, then so be it. If your camera falls short in a comparison, do not get cranky, just go out and use your camera more, be happy and enjoy your photos. Spend time trying to find ways to get better..improve your eye and techniques. This is what makes it so enjoyable, at least for me it does.

Leica X Vario

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It doesn’t really matter!

So with all of this Camera Craziness around these days just remember..have fun with it as this is what it is all about for many of us. Use what you have and enjoy it knowing that it is just as capable to take a great shot as just about anything else out there. What matters is what YOU feel for your camera, as it is a tool, a personal tool. When you enjoy it and it inspires you then the sky is the limit!

So have fun, stay positive and enjoy life!

Steve

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52 Comments

  1. The picture of the young lady with the feathers on her head really brought me erect in my chair. There is just something about it that has stiffened my resolve to be a better photographer… I just can’t take my eyes off of them…I mean it… Ah….great picture….

  2. Good on you, Steve. It’s manifestly clear to me that you take a “tell it as you see it” approach and ultimately your fans appreciate that (I know I do). Thanks for tirelessly doing a good job and maintaining a remarkable standard.

  3. I think the problem with the SLRMagic lens came in when moving from hand-made prototype to production unit. I’ve never handles one, offered to one owner that complained on dpreview to test his lens. I’ve spent years on forums trying to sort out problems with older lenses, especially the Russian Jupiters used on Leica. There is usually a reason why a lens gives problems, and typically every problem can be solved. In the case of the SLRmagic lens, personal attacks by owners against the company and by the owner of the company against anyone complaining seemed to be the norm. Too bad.

  4. I agree, but . . .

    I think the only real measure of a good photograph is whether it evokes an emotional response from a viewer. At its best, a photograph can be as powerful as any other medium. For me, that works in two stages.

    First and always foremost is the subject. A snapshot is one of the highest forms of photography because for a few people a photo of a familiar person or place will bring a flood of memories. It can be quite intense. It doesn’t much matter how well composed or detailed the shot is as long as the subject is recognizable. Conversely, a shot of something boring is just boring, even if taken with a very good camera. It evokes at most an ooh and ahh about the detail and some compositional effect but mostly it is a forgettable dud. That is how I would characterize most photos taken with large format cameras, including all but a few of Ansel Adams’ photos. Those photographers tend to get lost in their equipment and hazy concepts like hyperreality. Today, if I want to see some interesting and powerful photographs of general interest I go to the daily news shots. When those photographers go out to shoot their editors say “tell me a story”, and that is what they try to do. The subjects are interesting and the photographers are usually very skilled. Some shots are quite dramatic. In my view, the special power of photography is freezing and documenting reality. There is so much to experience but all of us miss most of it because we are not there or we fail to see something in the flow. Photographs enable us to experience things we missed or to experience something again, often more fully than the first time. That is what is mesmerizing about a great photo if the time and event are memorable or interesting.

    The second stage is to present that subject as well as possible. Part of that is the photographer’s skill at seeing what is interesting in a scene and capturing it in a way that conveys its special or predominant character. A simple snap of a person with no expression is far less interesting than a well framed shot capturing the person’s personality, beauty, youth, whatever most defines that person at that point in time.

    Another thing contributing to the image is detail, exposure, etc. High detail, great color, perfect exposure, etc. enhance an interesting subject. I will smile each time I see a photo of my son or grandson. I can get lost in one of those photos if it is highly detailed. It just grabs and pulls me in. That effect depends to a degree on the capability of the camera and in that way the camera does matter.

    On the other hand, poor focus, shallow color, poor composition, etc. detract from the image. Carried to an extreme it can ruin the photo even if the subject is interesting. Imagine the common problem of underexposing a face when the sun is behind the person. Some underexposure detracts. Severe underexposure ruins the photo since all you can see is the outline of a head. To work, a camera must be able to compensate either with adjustments made by the photographer or automatically, or ideally both. I remember using my first digital camera to take a shot of a friend standing on a beach with a brilliant sunset behind him. With older film cameras I would have had to mount a flash and take several shots hoping to get the right settings to expose him and the sunset properly. I was shooting a Canon G2 and it absolutely nailed the exposure of him and the sunset automatically. I was stunned. That tool produced a better photo of that scene than any camera I had used in the past.

    This is why I think the differences between cameras matters a lot. If it did not, this site would have no purpose.

    This site gets a lot of comments criticizing camera comparisons, and there is some merit to some of these comments. Like an audiophile, some people get lost in the gear, but cameras are not ends, they are a tool. A hammer doesn’t exist for its own sake, it exists to pound nails. I want to know about the capability of different cameras to help me take better photos and in that sense this site and the camera comparisons are completely legit and valuable. I just want to never forget that the proof is in the photos, not the gear.

    • As the expression goes “late to the party” – but not really because the party continues on this site, which shows no sign of slowing down. I had to respond to this comment, because it encapsulates so simply, thoughtfully and so well many of the essential elements of photography and the relationship to gear.

  5. For more than 40 years I am photographing many thousands of images. Since the year 2000 I am taking photo’s digital while my neighbor (who was a professional photographer) was telling me that quality photography would never go digital. Probably he knows how wrong he was then!
    At this time we sell digital cameras as of 2001 and when we have a customer in our shop who is in doubt about what he/she should buy we often refer to your website. We do this with the risk of losing sales because we do not sell every brand you talk about. But we are sure that our customer gets exactly the product that will fit the needs of them. So we trust your judgements and think that you are one of those persons who write what the think and feel and not just write what big companies tell you to write. Keep up the good work!

  6. Yes, sometimes the camera that gives me to most enjoyment to use is my iPhone 5. People get too out of whack about what gear others are using, or what camera companies release. You said it Steve, just go out and make pictures with whatever gear floats your boat and leave others be. I also think your opinions are your honest ones!

    • Exactly +1
      It WOULD be nice to see some better photos taken with all this gear (just see Flickr to see).
      Maybe Steve can have more/better/any articles on taking better pics that is less gear-focused.

  7. It can be hard to let go of your personal preferences and prejudices, but I think this gets easier with experience. I have prints in my portfolio made with large and medium format film cameras, full-frame DSLRs and small M43 cameras. Having used such diverse kit, I’ve more or less stopped worrying about technical quality, even though some are capable of much higher IQ than others, because they are all capable of producing wonderful portfolio prints at the size I want. Slightly more important are the qualitative differences, particularly between film and digital capture, although I find this is less significant than the effect of my shooting and processing style. Most significant, at least to me, are the way the different systems feel and handle in the field. Some are slow and contemplative, others are fast and fun, some are heavy, others are very light, etc. Most come and go over a period of time as my style, approach and circumstances change. Some stay and are used depending on what I’m photographing and how I feel like approaching the subject on the day. Having started my photography in the film era, I’m still amazed at the incredible range of fantastic equipment we have available to us these days. I love the fact that Steve gets this and really appreciates all the amazing opportunities on offer, whilst never forgetting to celebrate the actual images (!). I agree there’s no need to get drawn in to the petty arguments. I never read this type of comment anyway, I just skip ahead.

    • Doesn’t work. Its an all new EVF and the 240 is not set up to use it. Leica will not let it be used unless they come out with a version of this EVF.

  8. I think you spent to much time explaining your actions to a small group of grumpy people. I love your site and what you’re doing, but I hate it when you justify yourself.
    A big article just to explain what you already said? Come on. Just let them talk.
    It’s like when you repeat “I have a M but I’m not rich” all the time. Who cares if you are rich or not. You can afford it, so what ?
    Just keep taking awesome pictures, write great reviews and let the envious and the jealous lose their time.

  9. that’s a strange world and not just about photography. People ask always: “what is better?”. We are driven to to be strongly competitive and we have replaced “concept of different” with the “concept of best”. Don’t own the “best” is perceived like a failure and generate frustration, anger. That is a pitty because, the real opportunities, the greatest chance are on the differences. The “best”, in modern world, is just a underhanded lever of market.

    Ciao a Tutti by Pietro the Best.

  10. Nice post! Sadly, there is a big bunch of people so shallow that can’t understand that someone could do or say something only for the sake of honesty and not because he can have some sort of personal gain… So for them, if you say X is great or Y sucks, you are clearly a sellout to some Z company…

  11. I agree and I disagree.

    Yes, the camera you have should be fun and easy to use, but for most people that is their phone camera or POS and there is nothing wrong with those if you like shots that go for the middle in shutter and aperture to get a well balanced depth of field. And if you know what you are doing or not, you can get the occasional wonderful shot where the camera is trying to compensate for everything and something wonderful happens. But more often than not, you get a shot slightly out of focus and that is that.

    However, the next step up for the prosumer is be a little creative and shoot AP and begin to create the shot you want instead of just taking a picture. It is saying this is a wonderful scene, now how do I want to express it in a photo – many times that not being the true to life look and feel of a POS, but rather something more creative. It is kind of like comparing CD’s to vinyl records. One may sound better, the other feel better. Photography for me is much the same way.

    Lastly, Steve spends a lot of time on comparing IQ in cameras today as for the most part that is the most important feature on a camera today – since everything else can be done in post today. 30-years ago, photography had more to do with the camera and the setup. B&W had to be shot with B&W film. Burn and Dodge was a development trick, but never as fine tuned as you can do in PS today – but thank doG for Undo! Saturation, depth of field – you want a blue sky, lets make it a little bluer. In the past, the art of photography was in the setup as much as in the composition. Today, the art of photography is not so much in how well you know your camera, but how well you can fix the mistakes in PS later. So in the end, it really doesn’t matter the camera you use, as long as the IQ is acceptable for the medium you are using to view it.

    Roger

  12. This is basically one of the reasons I choose to shoot film. I never feel like my camera is being dwarfed when the new releases come out. I’m just happy as can be with my camera!

    • Well I’d like to argue against that Paul if only to justify the money I’ve wasted over the years in trying to find the “right” digital camera for me and my work (mostly street). But argue against it I cannot.

      I guess sometimes many of us are searching for that mythical pot of gold at the end of a rainbow thinking that the next latest & greatest camera will be the “one” for me. Been there, bought the camera and sold the camera again and again. Why do I do this I’ve asked so many times? I know the answer though – I love shooting with film but HATE the workflow involved in processing, scanning, correcting etc. Digital is soooo much easier in that respect and I’ve just wanted to find a digital camera for me, one that I “enjoy” shooting with as much as a film camera but it has been mainly a long and wasted journey.

      The Fuji X-Pro 1 has come the closest for me so far and it is a camera I shall keep for a while as it suits many needs. But all said and done and at the end of the day I’m never happier than shooting a Leica M6 or Mamiya 6 with BW film and a 50mm/75mm lens & my tiny Ricoh GR for 38/35mm colour. It fills 85% of ALL my needs. So why do I still keep looking for a digital alternative? But that’s just *me* and YMMV of course. It may be an entirely different setup for *you*.

      Ah but brain keeps telling me I’ve not yet tried the Fuji X100s yet, maybe that is “the one” for me finally? Hahaha – it never ends! 🙂 End of the day it’s all down to you as Steve rightly say’s.

      • I do have the X100S and am enjoying it, cidereye! I have just recently sold all my Nikon gear as I enter retirement and wanted something lighter. But I know I will want a little more lens capability so am leaning toward the X-E1. But believe the reviews of the X100S. Autofocus isn’t always perfect but it is very good. I have not had many occasions yet that the AF does not work. And when it doesn’t, I find the focus peaking works pretty good. It really is an enjoyable camera.

  13. “Choosing a camera should always be a personal experience. Much like buying a car, or a shirt, or a pair of shoes.”

    Great, Steve!

    There’s no photography blog like yours. Sometimes i stay out of the photography world, for personal reasons. But, when i back, your blog is always the restart point!

  14. Hey Steve,

    Love your mindset and what you do with this site. It seems that every so often you have to be a therapist for all the negative people in the world which is quite a shame because if these people woke up and started really seeing the world I bet there would be a flood of amazing photos for us to see. Best of luck and happy creating!

  15. AAh, great post Steve! You are a great photographer, I remember, long time ago, I found your blog by coincidence: you had posted a series of pictures of homeless people. Those pictures where absolutely amazing , the best I’ve seen so far. But I also like your regular test shots you use in your reviews, I like the daily inspiration readers contributions (some are really outstanding) , but I couldn’t care less what the gear is behind these superb photo’s.
    All these reviews and comparisons and the obvious readers comments, It’s fun to read, even that most of the cameras are way far out of my (financial) reach. But I feel absolutely no envy.
    I keep coming back to this blog every day, not to read about all the newest stuff, but to let me be inspired by other great photographers, and steel some of their ideas and experiment with it in my own work.

    But Steve is great in what he’s doing, I surely would miss my daily read, so my family and myself support Steve by buying everything via the special Amazon link. I have no idea what Steve finally gets from our purchases, and I really don’t wont to know. He deserves every penny of it.

    Keep up the good work Steve, it’s the best around, and getting better every day!

    Kris

  16. All that matters is the click of the shutter. The photo is what you see in your mind at that moment, never what is on the paper print or computer screen. The print is for others. Currently using M9, D3, D800, Nex 5n, Nikon F, M7, IId, IIIf, iphone5. What a mix, what a mess. What more can be said? It’s the look, the feel, the connection, the isolation, the involvement, the translation, and the mitigation between the mind’s eye, the eventual viewer’s eye and all points in between. Of, course, inspiring subjects help. The camera is just the tool. Can anyone draw on paper with pencil what they see? Maybe. Camera obscura led to camera digitalrama. ‘Smile, you’re on Candid Camera’

  17. So what are those two manufacturers that stop sending camera to you? Just curious! My guess would be C&N :p

  18. Thanks Steve…. the feature on the RX1R where with a push of a button it crops the frame to a 50mm is spectacular. Does the RX1 have this same feature? I’m headed on tour for the month of August and if I can’t pickup an RX1R I might just go with the RX1.

  19. Thanks, Steve
    A GREAT post. It all about being comfortable with and in tune with whatever camera works best for YOU. There are LOTS of great choices.

  20. Steve, I do love your reviews, and true, the best camera is the one that inspires you to take pictures. but allow me to say that, at first, I wasn’t that enthusiastic about your photography in general ( except for the “Seal-tour”). Lately though, something happened … not sure if it’s under influence of the MM 🙂 but instead of just “plain test shots”, you started to post “photo’s” ! Nice work !

    • Thanks Velu and BTW, I feel the same way. I go through times where I get unmotivated and there are many times I am not fan of my photos either. Doing these reviews all of the time makes it challenging to go out and get interesting shots. Sometimes a camera will motivate me more to go out and then that is when I really enjoy shooting, and it can show. The Seal tour was a great time for me and I loved every minute shooting those shows, plus, he made it tough to get a bad shot, lol. But thanks for the kind words.

  21. Keep up the good work! btw nice pic of the girl with the ‘hyperprimes’ 🙂

  22. This is very right, Steve. Nobody will stop all those releases that make the previous wave of camera’s look like old iron. Part of the story is that the manufacturers themselves want you to get the GAS-itching every few months again. But it IS true that the evolution in technology is – in both sensors as well as the conception of new lenses – going so damned fast. I keep on repeating it, a camera has become a consumable. Nothing what is on the shelfs of the camera shop now is capable to keep up with competition any longer than 2 years. Maybe lenses do, even then. But even accessories are not able to serve more than one generation in these times.

    It is also very clear that we are on the edge of new era, where the advanced mirrorless concepts with IL and very high IQ will reign more and more over the ‘old’ DSLR’s, unless maybe for professionals. I think the high end line of these dynosaurs may eventually even end up in the same corner as the medium formats, one day.

    There are in the digital world two choices: or you go with this flow and require a very good paying boss and a very dynamic bank-account, or you just try to hold out forever. I’m afraid for many passionate photographers this is e-x-t-r-e-m-e-l-y difficult. They are comparing all the time, want the best.

    For others, the GAS is unfortunately just a kind of race to keep up with what their friends are buying. These people are not interesting me, they should stay out of forums like these. The let me think too much of the kind that make people nervous in crowded tourist areas with big zooms and three top notch DSLR’s hanging around their neck.

    But this isn’t the message. Not at all. Photography is for people like you and me a story of joy, pleasure, seeing things and fixing them in eternal images. Express what you have in your heart. Creating visual communication. And this hasn’t anything to do with more pixels or a marginal increase of sharpness in the corners. Some may use an old polaroid to convey their visual language, others are using a Phase One. Some are able to spent a few coins on e-bay, other can’t worry about how many zero’s are in the number.

    Is that important? It is. Otherwise there would be so much comments on your blog, Steve 😉 .

    But see this comparison: if we would be painters, it’s like we are more caring more about the paint and the canvas than about the art itself, not? Maybe also this forum needs a bit more about what is on the canvas, though you’re doing your best, in those magnificent ‘daily inspirations’. The best part of it.

  23. It is definitely all about what works for a particular person. The reason I kept my 4.1MP D2H bodies for 10 years was because, for me, they just worked. They were like an extension of my arm. I have recently sold all my Nikon gear (including my D2H bodies 🙁 but they will always be a camera I remember and loved using. Now, with retirement looming, I decided it was time to move on to something lighter so I got a Fuji X100S. I am enjoying the camera along with an old Yashica Electro35 GS and Tri-X. Still looking to get some sideline work (pro-bono with one or two non-profits) but I am enjoying the capabilities of the fixed-lens Fuji.

    Just keep rocking on, Steve! It is what you do best!!!

    • Thanks! I used to get attacked back in the day when I shot the D2H and D2Hs. I remember doing a “Crazy Comparison” on DP review showing how the D2hs and its 4MP could look just as good as a (then modern) Nikon D200. I was told NO WAY, you are crazy, this is not valid!! Then I showed my tests that proved my point. The D2Hs had better color, better noise control and when upsized to the size of the D200 beat it that way as well. The D2H and Hs was very underrated at the time. My son still owns and old D2h. 🙂

      • I did several shoots where an image was actually used on billboards! Out of a 4.1MP camera! I truly enjoyed these cameras when I was shooting for a newspaper – great AF tracking for sports, 8fps, manageable file size, and the list goes on.

        • Yep, it’s not just about number of megapixels. It’s about sensor size, bit depth, processor capability, low-light performance, buffer performance, ergonomics … and all the other myriad little things and how well they are designed to work together. That’s what makes the pro cameras so great, albeit with a significant weight penalty.

          Joe McNally shot billboards with the D2X and its 12 megapixel crop sensor.

          Even after the arrival of Nikon’s D4, low-mileage D3s cameras ― with ONLY 12 megapixels ― are still highly sought after today for all these reasons … along with their unbeatable low-light performance.

          Have a look at this photographer’s work >> http://www.barryjbrady.com/

          He uses one camera for all his work. A Nikon D80. With a 10.2 megapixel CCD crop sensor.

          As photographer David duChemin so often says: gear is good, but vision is better. The camera is a tool. It will only improve your images in so far as it inspires you to shoot with it.

  24. Steve, I have waited months for my Fujifilm X100s to arrive. And it’s here! I’m newly retired and will set out to photograph Civil War battlefields, in the weeks ahead. The same rush of excitement felt, years ago, when I became photographer for the high school newspaper, IS BACK. I’ll never forget the day our editor handed me a Kodak Instamatic and two cartridges of 126 film.

    This 14 year old kid shot art exhibits, basketball games, a lunchroom mom’s – retirement, French Club awards, Friday night dances and on and on and on. All with that treasured Instamatic.

    Steve, for me, it’s still about the fun and the passion. You are so right…”It doesn’t really matter what you shoot.”

    Keep up the GREAT work.
    Thanks,
    Don

  25. Love the chick in chainmail and I do not care which camera was used !!

    Joking aside , when can we expect a review of the Olympus EP5?

    • Thanks! Just starting on the E-P5 now..it feels SOLID, has the best controls of any PEN to date and is fast. The 5 Axis IS rocks as it does in the E-M5 but…not sure I would take it over the E-M5 due to the fact they cost the same, have the same sensor and the E-M5 has a built in EVF and is “Splash Proof”. But of course, more use and testing to go.

      • Thanks, I shall look forward to your comments with interest. For me, I rather like the idea of the adjustable/ removable EVF, so it can be updated as and when. Also when removed it makes the camera that bit more compact therefore adding flexibility. In addition I prefer the the new button and switch layout but maybe these will find their way into the next version of the OMD along with the high rez EVF.

  26. I believe you, based on reading many, many of your camera reviews, that you favor the cameras that give you the best results and that you point out problems in performance, pricing, etc. when you see them. And I believe you are not “paid off” by Leica, Olympus or any other camera manufacturer. I think you are an honest guy and value that honesty.But I do not believe you would use and promote a camera that was labeled, TURD. That is just going too far.

  27. That is why I visit your website, much more sense than yesterday’ sony/leica comparison. Thanks for this great article

  28. Great post.

    Cameras DO matter in the sence that they must inspire me to get out and shoot. For most people, that “camera” is their iPhone, megapixels and sensor size is secondary, if not irrelevant.

    As for honesty and integrity: what goes around, comes around. You have a large following for a reason.

    Jan

    • Thanks. That was my point. The 100% crops and detail comparisons do not natter but the camera does. It is whatever camera works for YOU and makes you happy. Then and only then will someone be able to go out and put it to real use and learn with it.

      • Steve, if you really want to put the camera through the paces and see if it falls shot try shoot on a cloudy day in colour…… see how it handles shadows ! untils then it’s just more summer snaps… that do expose one problem, weather it’s on a sony or leica. It is the holes of white light in your pictures …. eeeck …….. try being more critical please

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