Thursday, February 15, 2018
Loire Valley, France - Day 6
To make up for the disappointment yesterday we headed for two different locations. My shutter therapy is falling short right now!
Our first stop was Cheverny. Built between 1620 and 1634. All the finishing on the towers weren't completed until 1648 however. It's the first chateau to be built as a chateau without any defensive or military purposes in mind. And what a beautiful building it is. I could see me living there too, ...full
Friday, February 2, 2018
Battery Usage in Loire Valley, France
I have now used the Olympus E-M1 and E-M5 II extensively for four solid days. One complaint I have is battery consumption. I don't believe it's down to the cameras but to the third party batteries I've purchased. I haven't bought any Olympus original batteries because I had such good experience with the older type batteries used in their older models. I am now possibly regretting my decision to go the same route with these ...full
Thursday, February 1, 2018
Loire Valley, France - Day 5
Today we took a break from looking at chateaus, even one chateau per day can be too much at times so we headed out for the town of Orleans. With some 120,000 inhabitants, it's one of the bigger towns in the region and offers some great sights to see. It was the capital of medieaval France until the mid-18th Century. During the French Revolution it bacame stauchly Republican. The cathedral dominates the town (Cathedrale-Ste-Croix) and ...full
Tuesday, January 16, 2018
Loire Valley, France - Day 4
Apart from being in the Loire Valley to see the great chateaus, I am also here to test some lenses which I mentioned in one of my last posts. I find it a good time to do this because I'm pretty relaxed when I'm on holiday. So today I decided to mount the Tamron 14-150 f3.5-5.8 on the E-M1 and see how things turn out. The last test I carried out with the Tamron was ...full
Monday, January 1, 2018
Loire Valley, France - Day 3
We headed south west in the direction of Chenonceaux which is the village that gives it’s name to Chateau Chenonceau. Aptly named as the “Palace of Women” because over the ages only women have owned and lived in the chateau. Originally built in 1512 by Catherine Briconnet it was Diane de Poitiers who would build the bridge that spans the Cher river. Catherine de Medici then added the galleries over the bridge.
Friday, December 22, 2017
General Notes on Equipment - Micro Four Thirds
This is just a general note on the m43 equipment I use and a few thoughts on how that could change.full
The more I use the Panasonic GX7 the more I like it. I can see why some people would find it too small but it fits my hands perfectly, which tells you something about the size of my hands. The Panasonic 7-14 f4 ( while having some problems with flare) has really surprised me by ...
Friday, December 15, 2017
Loire Valley, France - Day 2
The heat is oppressive today. We feel like taking a shower every 15 minutes. Despite this we battled our way to the largest chateau in France, Chambord.
As you can see from the map above, Chambord isn't far at all from Blois where we were staying for some 10 days. The map shows where a couple of hundred chateaus are situated in the Loire Valley. That's why we chose Blois as ...full
Wednesday, December 13, 2017
Feedback Request about Image Size - UPDATE
It seems people aren't all that fussy about the size of the images I post so everything stays as is: Images will still be 1200px on the longest side.
As of today I have posted a couple of images on my Photoblog that are 1600px in size rather than the normal 1200px I normally publish.
My question to you out there is: Would you rather I post images at ...full
Friday, December 1, 2017
Loire Valley, France - Day 1
Ten hours it took to drive from Frankfurt, Germany to Blois, France. Blois is the regional capital with some 50,000 inhabitants. After finding the flat we had rented for the next 10 days, out we went to see what delights the town could offer.
For those who are curious to know where Blois is, it's right in the middle on the Loire Valley where most of the chateaus of this famous valley lie. From Blois, ...
Wednesday, November 15, 2017
Well, I never thought I'd be writing this post. I suppose you could call me fickle after this. I saw on TheDigitalStory a review of a DSLR and it impressed me so much I actually bought one. I don't believe it myself really but I just got mailed saying the equipment is on it's way to me.
I've had Pentax in the past and image quality was always tops, especially with their prime lenses which ...
Wednesday, November 1, 2017
Exceptional Lenses I Own
An earlier post I did was about "Lens GAS" and all the excellent lenses I would dearly love to own but can't justify. Well, lets see what excellent lenses I do own and can highly recommend.full
Since I own quite a few excellent lenses, I'll mention only those I think are outstanding and can recommend all photographers take a look at them (if you own that system of course). If you don't own the system, maybe ...
Monday, October 16, 2017
Manual Focus Lenses I Like
For those of us that like using manual focus lenses, I'm sure that we all have our favourites that we always grab on the way out the door. I have a few so I thought I would mention them here. maybe I can get a few tips an what you like, and maybe, just maybe, you can recommend one that I haven't tried and turns out to be a gem.full
I believe this manufacturer to be ...
Monday, October 2, 2017
Lens Envy For The Mirrorless Systems
I'm sure you've all heard the term GAS before. It's very common in photographers who think that the next piece of new kit is going to improve their photography. Of course it doesn't but there's no point preaching to them, because they just want new toys to play with. I'm not sure if Gear Acquisition Syndrome is only symptomatic to photographers, but I'm assuming it isn't.
I know all photographers go through this at some ...
Monday, October 2, 2017
In Need of Your Advice - UPDATE
Scroll down to bottom for Update.
All these posts believe it or not are firstly written by hand and then typed up on my computer at home. Well, that has to stop!! It just takes up too much of my time. And this is where you all come in.full
What I’m looking for.
I’m looking for something small and light that I take with me on my travels. I write these posts in txt or rtf ...
Friday, September 15, 2017
Panasonic GX85 and TZ101 Visits Wuerzburg
What better time to test a couple of new cameras than a family weekend in a new city. We do this once a year at around the end of May when everybody seems to have the time before summer starts. We select a different city every year and this year it was Wuerzburg. It’s situated in Bavaria, Germany and all of us can be there within a couple of hours by car.full
I’ve already done the ...
Friday, September 1, 2017
Spur of the Moment Purchase - Sony FE 70-300 f4.5-5.6 G OSS
Spur of the moment purchase - Sony FE 70-300 f4.5-5.6 G OSS
Size: 144mm x 84mm
Aperture: f4.5-5.6 - f22-f29
Let me just say out front that this was a spur of the moment purchase. Do I need it? No. I just wanted it and for the following ...
Sunday, August 27, 2017
Sony APS-C Camera Update
I know, I've been threatening to do this for some time as I've mentioned in a couple of posts. I've updated my Sony Nex-5N and Nex-7 cameras to an A6000.
I never seem to sell any cameras and I've still got those two models. So, what model did I buy? It's actually an older model, the A6000. I just couldn't justify an A6300/A6500. Just too expensive for what I do with them.
However, I ...
Wednesday, August 23, 2017
Less is More
There's a saying "Less is more". And I perceive that as being true in all walks of life but especially where photography is concerned. full
One of my problems when going on a trip is deciding which system to take, Fuji, Sony or m43. I'm lucky being able to afford three system simultaneously but on the other hand it does cause some difficulty when going on trips. The question about which system with which lenses to ...
Friday, August 18, 2017
New Lens Expectations
I've been so impressed with the Samyang lenses that I started thinking about them in general. Although they are all manual focus lenses, once you get used to them you really don't miss autofocus at all. Well, that's me speaking of course. Horses for courses and all that.
I now have the 12 f2 for MFT and for Fuji X mount.
This lens is small, unobtrusive, weighs in at 260g and ...full
Thursday, August 10, 2017
Panasonic TZ101 - Initial Impression
Known in Germany as the TZ101 and as Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS100/TZ100 elsewhere (which I haven't a clue as to why) was purchased as my pocketable go anywhere daylight camera. The reason for the daylight is because of it's f5.9 aperture at the long end. As many of you know I like to shoot long and I wanted something small with a longish lens. It didn't have be fast at the long end, that would make ...full
Monday, August 7, 2017
Quick Settings for Olympus High Definition Image
1 Go into the Menu and turn on HD image.
2. Select time delay before image is taken.
3. Go to SCP and select HD option.
4. Select sl + raw
5. Limited to ISO 1600. Flash off. Tripod a must.
If anyone would like to add something to this, please do.
Saturday, August 5, 2017
Tamron Firmware Update for their -150 F/3.5-5.8 Di III [Model C001] Lens
It's been a number of weeks since I've posted. Life just gets in the way sometimes.
I though the fact that Tamron have brought out a firmware update for their 14-150 F/3.5-5.8 Di III [Model C001] was worth mentioning. I reported some time ago that the lens performed better on my Panasonic GX7 than on any other camera. If you look back at the FW update notes, version 1.1 was actually ...full
Thursday, June 1, 2017
Having being enchanted by the Fujifilm X-T1 and X-T10, I was really looking forward to purchasing the X-T2 when it came out. Come to think of it I was also looking forward to the Olympus E-M1 II. However, as I realized what the manufacturers were charging for these engineering marvels I sat down and thought it all through again.full
The X-T2 is retailing presently in Germany at €1700 and the Olympus E-M1 II is at a ...
Wednesday, May 17, 2017
Panasonic GX85 - Initial Impression (Is it a Reborn GX7?)
This is supposed to be the little brother of the GX8. I see the GX85 as the big brother of the GX7, a halfway house if you like. If you look at the images below, you can hardly tell the cameras apart, and I have to hold it and look at it to tell the difference. OK, my G85 is brown which makes it easier to tell which is which, but at the bricks and ...full
Thursday, May 4, 2017
Olympus 12-100 f4 Pro - Initial Impression
Not having the willpower to say no to such things, I went ahead and purchased the Olympus 12-100 f4 lens. After looking closely at my use of lenses I came to the conclusion most of my images were taken between 12mm and 200mm and not really being a lover lens changes, the 12-100 f4 would be my ideal “travel” lens. full
My last holiday was done with 2 Panasonic GM5 cameras paired with the Panasonic 12-32 ...
Saturday, April 1, 2017
The Ultimate Catalogue
For those interested in Micro Four Thirds or Four Thirds cameras and lenses from all manufacturers today, don't miss this download. It will give you all the data you need from lenses and cameras availble on the market today.
Here's the link
Sorry to the other system users here, I wish all manufacteres had one of these.
Saturday, March 4, 2017
Panasonic-Leica D Vario-Elmar 14-150 f3.5-5.6 Mega O.I.S. For Four-Thirds Mount
Brought onto the market by Panasonic in 2007, this lens was my permanent buddy on one of my 4/3 Panasonic L1 bodies. It always went with me on my holidays and it has seen a lot of action over the years.
Size: 90mm x 79mm
Aperture: f3.5 - f22
I believe I paid in the region of €1200 for ...full
Thursday, February 16, 2017
My Favourite Kit Lenses
Every manufacturer bring their cameras to market with a standard (normally sub-par) kit lens. Normally I discard these as “not-up-to-my-standard” and they end up in a corner somewhere. The only reason I get some of these lenses is when I can’t find a body only offer but sometimes these lenses surprise me with their image quality. Some of them are not to be discarded as I stated above, “sub-par”.full
There are times a lens comes out ...
Friday, February 10, 2017
Panasonic G81 and the 12-60 f3.5-5.6 Power O.I.S. Kit Lens
The Panasonic 12-60 f3.5-5.6 is the kit lens that accompanies the new G81 camera. It was either get the camera only or get the kit with the lens for a pittance more. I selected the second option. I’m certain I can sell it on a popular auction portal for a higher price than what I paid for it if need be. full
It has Power O.I.S. built in so theoretically using this in conjunction with the ...
Saturday, January 14, 2017
Panasonic 14-42 f3.5-5.6 PZ Power O.I.S.
Having just tested the Olympus 14-42 f3.5-5.6 EZ I was expecting the same sort of performance from this lens. Lets just look at these two for a minute; both are 14-42mm, both are f3.5-5.6 and both have a power zoom (or electronic zoom). Lets see the specs for the lens:
Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-42 f3.5-5.6 PZ Power O.I.S.
Size: 27mm x 61mm
Aperture: f3.5 - f22
Saturday, January 7, 2017
Olympus 14-42 EZ f3.5-5.6
Nice and compact, very light and allows you to put this, attached to an Olympus E-M10 or E-M10 II, in your jacket pocket. All the lens has on the outside is the zoom ring, and that is it.
Olympus 14-42 f3.5-5.6 EZ (28 - 84mm in 35mm terms)
Size: 23mm x 61mm
Aperture: f3.5 - f22
Sunday, January 1, 2017
Olympus 12-50 f3.5-6.3 EZ
This lens (or my copy) can't be described as Olympus' greatest achievement. I think this was the kit lens with one of the earliest EM models. Forgot which but it doesn't really matter.
Olympus 12-50 f3.5 - 6.3 EZ (24-100 35mm equivalent)
Size: 83mm x 57mm
Aperture: f3.5 - f22
I like the range 24mm - 100mm in FF ...full
Sunday, December 25, 2016
My Outlook On 2017
It has been an interesting 2016 for all mirrorless systems ranging from Sony to Fujifilm to Olympus and Panasonic. Canon have come out with their latest model the M5 but a little late in my opinion. They have a lot of ground to make up over the established manufacturers and whether they’ll catch up is anyone's guess, but I won’t be investing in that system any time soon. Nikon have lost the thread and haven’t ...full
Sunday, December 18, 2016
Mitakon (ZY Optics) Speedmaster Pro Ver.(M67) “The Dark Knight” 50mm f0.95 for FE Mount
Having a preference for the 50mm lens, it stands to reason I own a lot of lenses in this focal length. A lot of photographers find the focal length boring, preferring the 35mm view. Not me though, I prefer the 50mm.
Before I go on any further, if you are thinking of purchasing this lens, there are two versions. My version, “The Dark Knight” came out only 3 months after the original version.
Wednesday, December 14, 2016
Two Panasonic GM5 Cameras Do London
This post has taken a really long time appear here; I never seemed to get around to it, or something else took priority. Anyway, better late than never. Before I begin I would just like to mention that throughout 2016 my Panasonic GM5 cameras have seen a tremendous amount of use. I was quite surprised when I realised that all major holidays/breaks/visits this year were done with the Panasonic GM5 cameras. I think this shows ...full
Sunday, November 27, 2016
Update: 135mm Lens - Samyang 135mm f2 for E Mount
One of my first post was about using 135mm legacy lenses on mirrorless systems. Since then I've acquired another 135mm lens but not one that can be adapted to all systems. The original post was about legacy lenses easily adapted to modern digital mirrorless systems via a cheap dumb adapter.full
This new lens has an FE Sony mount as the Sony native lens selection is rather lacking. I have some A mount lenses but ...
Friday, November 11, 2016
Panasonic Leica DG Summilux 15mm F1.7 ASPH
What a beautiful little lens. Comes with a hood and a rubber cap to cover the front element that doesn’t come off when you take it out of your bag. This lens just smells of Leica.full
It’s got Leica in the name and although it’s not built by Leica the quality is visibly superior to your normal Panasonic built lenses. They are built to Leica specifications which was a real coup for Panasonic. Quality is much ...
Friday, November 11, 2016
Samyang 100 f2.8 Macro for FE-Mount
After the purchase of the Samyang 135mm f2 lens, and being very impressed by the image quality I decided to acquire the Samyang 100mm f2.8 Macro also in the E-mount version (I know I've said it before but I'll say it again anyway, there's no way I'm going to pay Sony the prices they're asking for their newer lenses). I did look at the Zeiss equivalent but I had to pick myself up off the ...full
Thursday, November 10, 2016
Olympus Pen-F . An Update
After my initial setup of the Pen-F I took it out on my normal testing route with the Olympus 14-150 f4.0-5.6 II mounted on it. I also have the original version of this lens and have used it extensively when I've been travelling. I've noticed lately that my original has become de-centered on one side and is quite noticeable when looking closely at the images. The question was, get it repaired or purchase the second ...full
Sunday, October 16, 2016
Sailing On The Italian West Coast With A Couple Of Panasonic GM5s
You may have noticed a lack of posts in September, that’s because of a lack of time in the first half and a sailing holiday in the second. Yes, a sailing holiday. In all we were five guests on the boat and two crew members. Two crew were necessary because the five us hadn’t a clue about sailing, but that didn’t deter us from enjoying the trip. The boat was a 54 footer with 3 ...full
Saturday, August 27, 2016
Cornwall - The South West of England
I’ve always wanted to go down to Cornwall, but never quite managed it. Don’t ask me why I want to go there but I suppose it’s to do with it’s history and the rugged coastline I’ve been hearing a lot about. The small harbours nestling among the ragged cliffs. Sounds great doesn’t it?full
Well, a few weeks ago I had a chance to do just that and my wife and myself stayed in Cornwall for a ...
Saturday, August 20, 2016
Sony E PZ 18 - 105 f4 G OSS
Just like with all of my other systems I like a single lens that covers most of my shooting focal length needs when out on a walk and I don't know what to expect at my destination. I would have bought an FF lens for my A7x cameras but I couldn't really find one except the 24-240. The problem with that lens is it's heavy may spoil my walk. So I found one of these ...full
Monday, August 8, 2016
I’m sure we all do it from time to time; just browsing the Internet to see what’s new, what’s on offer, and if there’s any acquisitions to made, on the cheap that is. Well, I was guilty of this a few weeks back and I came across something I was hoping I was not going to see. An Olympus Pen-F with the 17 f1.8. And it was at a price I just couldn’t say no ...full
Sunday, August 7, 2016
My X-Mount Lens Solution (Partly Solved)
My last post was just me philosophising a little about what X-Mount lenses to buy or not. I still haven’t acquired the Fujinon 10-24 f4 because it’s just too expensive. Can’t justify it, and if I personally say that about a lens then it’s got to be serious. It doesn't mean that I've given up on that lens though, it's just on hold.
I decided to go another route with my X-Mount lenses with ...full
Wednesday, July 20, 2016
With the announcement of the Fuji X-T2 things have got interesting again in the Fujifilm world. Why? Because of the little joystick at the back of the camera. Simple as that. I have the same thing on the back of the Sony A900 camera and it's something I appreciate very much, and something I use quite a bit. Only with the Fuji it's become more accurate as you have a lot more focusing points to ...full
Wednesday, July 13, 2016
Polarizers (Circular and Linear)
I think, together with ND filers, this is the only type of filter I now use with my digital cameras. It's the only filter that cannot be reproduced in post processing.full
The polarizing filter (also known as a Pol filter) can actually do more than darken a blue sky. It can take away reflections from windows or dampen reflections from wet leaves. It also lengthens your shutter speed by up to 2 stops. Those are things ...
Saturday, June 4, 2016
The Fujifilm Equipment Revival
I've been neglecting my Fujifilm equipment of late as I've favoured my M43 systems, especially my Panasonic GM5 cameras and their extremely small lenses. However since I purchased the X-T10 as a backup camera for my X-T1 and being extremely impressed with the image quality I took my Fuji system for an extended weekend break. This is the first time I've actually only taken a Fuji system with me without a camera from another system.
Wednesday, May 25, 2016
Fujifilm X-T10 and the 18-55 f2.8-4.0 OIS "KIT LENS"
Many have called the X-T10 the X-T1’s brother and to be honest I have to agree with that comment. Image quality is the same, as the innards are really the same. There are a few points where the X-T1 has the upper hand over the X-T10 but it’s nothing really major. To me anyway. (E.G. Higher resolution EVF and magnification).
I find the body of the X-T10 to be quite small but if you ...full
Saturday, May 21, 2016
I think photographers sometimes hit a spot at some stage where nothing seems to go right and the juices don't seem to flow. I suppose it's something similar to a writer's block where they sit in front of a blank page (or screen nowadays) and they just can't start writing. Or, they start writing knowing in their hearts it's total rubbish. It could be because of a lack of ideas, inspiration, conviction or even boredom.full
Saturday, April 9, 2016
Commlite Update + Canon 40 f2.8 STM
I had the opportunity the other day to go for a little walk and I took along the Sony A7II with the Canon 40 f2.8 STM mounted via the Commlite EF - E mount adapter. I have now set back-button AF on all my Sony Alpha cameras but I just couldn't get this to work using the adapter. It's probably not supported so I used the top button in the usual way. Maybe someone out ...full
Tuesday, April 5, 2016
UPDATED: Panasonic GM5.
I thought I would update this piece with a couple of images from this camera that has been printed on Alubond at 60cm x 45cms and both are hanging on my wall as I write this. My wife wasn't impressed by my choice and she stated clearly she wouldn't have picked either for printing. That's when sh was seeing the two on the screen. Yes, they didn't look at all impressive when viewed ...full
Wednesday, March 30, 2016
Short Post about my Panasonic GM5 Love Affair.
I believe I've mentioned that the Panasonic GM5 really got my attention after I took it with me to the south of France last year (as an afterthought). The camera and the lenses made for it are so small and light you really don't realise that you're carrying them around with you. full
I normally use the two lenses made for it; the 12-32 f3.5-5.6 OIS and the 35-100 f4.0-5.6 OIS. These two lenses were especially ...
Friday, March 25, 2016
Micro Four-Thirds Musings
A lot of users swear by full frame cameras reasoning that depth of field can be mastered best with this format. True, DOF can be better achieved with this format but it all depends what you shoot. Landscape photographers try to get MORE DOF rather than less. So that argument doesn't hold up all of the time. It also doesn't mean that it's impossible to achieve a shallow DOF with other formats. I personally use ...full
Sunday, March 20, 2016
Adapters - Follow-up Post
My last post was regarding adapters for using Canon EF lenses on Sony E-mount and M43 systems. Having tested a few lenses I felt I could post again with some more information with a few images to show the results of using those lenses on the Sony E-mount.
Firstly, the Commlite adapter. I've only tested the Canon 40 f2.8 STM lens on a Sony E-mount camera as of this post so I'll probably test ...full
Wednesday, March 2, 2016
Adapters for EF to E and m4/3 Mount Cameras
Adapters for EF to E and m4/3 Mount Cameras
(Plus some more ramblings)
The reason for my purchase of the Sony Alpha Axx cameras when they first came out was to have an FF sensor (a very good sensor) in a small and light package. Since my first purchase I must admit that GAS got the better of me and now I have a few of these little marvels. Each has it's own use ...full
Saturday, February 27, 2016
Zeiss Tessar 85mm f4 ZM
Zeiss T* 85 F4 Tessar ZMfull
Sometimes, just sometimes you purchase a new piece of equipment and you just fall in love with it. This is the experience I had after purchasing the Zeiss Tessar 85 f4 lens. It's just a wonderful piece of engineering. It's actually quite compact at 95mm with a diameter of 54mm but I class it as being quite hefty weighing in at 310g. As a matter of fact I wanted ...
Tuesday, February 23, 2016
Fanboy. It's a bit of a derogatory term for someone defending something to the bitter end.full
Saturday, December 26, 2015
Adobe CC Keyboard Shortcuts
Adobe CC keyboard shortcut sheets.
Sunday, December 28, 2014
135mm Lenses on the Sony A7r
When I was using my Canon 5D (still have it just not using it much) the 135mm f2 L lens was one of my favourites. The focal length just suited my style of photography and, let's face it, the 135mm f2 lens is one of the sharpest lenses ever made. Those who argue with that last statement must have purchased a "Monday morning lens" or just aquired a bad copy. So when I ...full
Sunday, December 21, 2014
Some "Post" Thoughts
After finishing my first real post about some manual lenses ont he Sony A7r, I had a little break and thought about that actual post I did.
My admiration is growing for those bloggers that manage to get one or more posts out each day. It took me some time to get everything posted as I wanted, and I'm not taliking about hours. It took me a couple of days to get it done. ...full
Thursday, December 4, 2014
Some 50mm, 75mm and 100mm manual focus lenses on the Sony A7r
Over the years I have accumulated a number of manual focus lenses from Olympus, Nikon, Minolta, Zeiss, Canon among others. All of these lenses have been tested (read used) on APS-C and M4/3 cameras with good results for most of them. Those lenses that didn't pass the test on those cameras have no chance of passing on a full frame camera for the simple reason that the sensor uses the sweet spot of ...full
Sunday, November 30, 2014
Initial Blog Post
Some of you may have noticed that this is a new section I've been thinking about for some time. I already have a photoblog going so why the normal blog? Well, I find the photoblog a bit restrictive for some subjects that I would like to post about and let's face it, a photoblog is just that, somewhere to post your images and nothing more.full
This blog will most definately not be a daily thing but ...
I'm an enthusiastic photographer who likes to tinker with manual lenses on most camera formats.