Cameras and Photography Explained

This page points to all recent articles published on dslrbodies.comsansmirror.comgearophile.com, and filmbodies.com, and is updated as new articles appear (most recent on top). For articles from previous months, check the Articles Index Archive. 

Go Wazzu. Hmm, who said the Z7 couldn't shoot sports? Z7, 70-200mm f/2.8 on FTZ adapter.

The Gura Gear Kiboko's are back (in 16, 22, and 30L sizes). When Tamrac and Gura Gear merged, we got G Elite versions that weren't quite as good as the original Kiboko's. Now we've got a Kiboko 2.0 line [advertiser link] that looks more like what we originally liked. My older Kiboko is still my preferred long-distance travel pack for wildlife shooting (and some sports). These packs carry well when walking/hiking, and properly packed they swallow up a lot of gear in airline friendly overhead sizes. I'll be taking a closer look at them when they ship, but from the photos it looks like we have our old favorite back. Only downside I see is that it's now only available in black.

>>> This Week's Articles:

November 12

New Nikon Lens Rebates. As I always do with Nikon lens rebates, here’s my advice about how good these lenses and new prices are. Article on dslrbodies.com

Dead Versus Zombie. I’ve written about this before in passing, but it seems with all the recent talk about “dead” companies, mounts, and cameras in the photography press—and yes, including from me—we need to present some elaboration to be clear about what we’re talking about. Article on dslrbodies.com 

May I ask that you start your photographic-related shopping by clicking on any of the B&H links on this site, such as the following one. B&H is this site's exclusive advertiser. Starting a purchase at B&H from a link on this site helps support this site.

Some of you probably aren't aware that I've long had a dedicated B&H Landing Page [advertiser link] where the items in each of four different "gear bags" I use lives. We've just updated that page and the underlying pages, as well.

                              

>>> Recent Articles:

November 8

The Decline Continues. One now has to wonder what the Japanese camera companies are actually hiding. In particular, both Canon and Nikon in their financial results are seeming to understate the likely market size (Nikon just said it's 10m units; the actual 12-month trailing value is 11m units, so cooked into Nikon's numbers is an implicit strong collapse of the ILC market in just two quarters). Either that or they're overstocking inventory by large numbers (e.g. CIPA shipments are far above actual sales). Article on dslrbodies.com

Review of the Nikon 180-400mm f/4E FL Lens. The 180-400mm f/4E FL ED VR AF-S is a follow-up to a venerable lens with a long past (all the way back into manual focus days). It's Nikon's pro  zoom optic that naturally sits above the f/2.8 pro zoom trio (14-24mm, 24-70mm, 70-200mm). While not an f/2.8 lens, the 180-400mm (and the 200-400mm before it) provide pro quality optics with the usual modest zoom range (~2x) in a package that easily be carried in the field with the other three. Article on dslrbodies.com

November 5

Working Distances. Working Distance is the measurement from the front of the lens to the subject. It does not include lens hood; it's the measurement from the focus plane on the subject to the middle of the front element of the lens. Article on dslrbodies.com

Are DSLRs Still the Best Choice? I'm going to do one of my end-of-year assessments a little earlier this year. Many of you will be struggling with buying decisions this holiday season because of all the higher-end mirrorless cameras that appeared in and around Photokina. I've now had the chance to use virtually every new camera—some for less time than others, obviously—and I am ready to deliver a quick assessment of The State of the ILC. Article on dslrbodies.com

October 31

Buy f/2.8 or f/4? I saw a post title on dpreview not too long ago that immediately registered with me, because I find myself today asking the same question: f/4 or f/2.8? Or I suppose given my recent reviews of the Sigma DX zooms, we could also label that f/2.8 or f/1.8? for the DX market. Article on dslrbodies.com

Do We Still Need Fast Lenses? The combination of better sensors and more ubiquitous VR has a lot of folk wondering about that question. The answer, as usual, is much more nuanced than an outright yes or no. Article on dslrbodies.com

Recommended Macintosh Hardware. This evergreen article has been updated to reflect the latest Apple announcements. Article on dslrbodies.com

Canon Joins Canaries in Coal Mine. For the first time recently, Canon reported financial results that indicate a stronger weakness in their camera business. Year to year, the third quarter was down 15.6% in sales, and 45.3% in profit. More ominous: "temporarily curtailed shipments due to a pause in entry-class DSLR purchasing." Article on dslrbodies.com

The Z7 blog has been updated again with some PhotoPlus Expo notes.

October 31

Buy f/2.8 or f/4? I saw a post title on dpreview not too long ago that immediately registered with me, because I find myself today asking the same question: f/4 or f/2.8? Or I suppose given my recent reviews of the Sigma DX zooms, we could also label that f/2.8 or f/1.8? for the DX market. Article on dslrbodies.com

Do We Still Need Fast Lenses? The combination of better sensors and more ubiquitous VR has a lot of folk wondering about that question. The answer, as usual, is much more nuanced than an outright yes or no. Article on dslrbodies.com

Recommended Macintosh Hardware. This evergreen article has been updated to reflect the latest Apple announcements. Article on dslrbodies.com

Canon Joins Canaries in Coal Mine. For the first time recently, Canon reported financial results that indicate a stronger weakness in their camera business. Year to year, the third quarter was down 15.6% in sales, and 45.3% in profit. More ominous: "temporarily curtailed shipments due to a pause in entry-class DSLR purchasing." Article on dslrbodies.com

The Z7 blog has been updated again with some PhotoPlus Expo notes.

October 24

Leica Goes Retro to the Future. Leica today announced yet another M model, the M10-D, but it's a very interesting camera, as that image of its back should showArticle on sansmirror.com M10-D data page  (Camera Database header page has been updated)

Where Are We? With Photokina out of the way, it's time to assess where the camera makers now fall in terms of mirrorless cameras. Article on sansmirror.com

The False Equivalency That Great Photo Equipment Makes Great Photographs. I recently had someone believe that they were blasting me to smithereens on the Internet by comparing my photography to someone who's regarded as one of the top ten photographers of all time. While they thought they were dissing me big time, I actually was quite amused to find someone trying to compare me to the very best. Article on dslrbodies.com

October 18

QAD HDR. Back near the turn of the century, I was one of the early proponents of ETTR (expose to the right) for raw shooters. The classic definition of this is that you place the brightest highlight you want to preserve right near the saturation point of the sensor (255 for any given photosite in 8-bit terms). Article on dslrbodies.com

QAD Sports Recommendations. The following presupposes credentialed or official press access to the sidelines. In football, for instance, you’ll note that there’s a dashed line set back from the actual sideline at most collegiate and pro stadiums. Article on dslrbodies.com Updated

Adobe Updates. At Adobe Max, Adobe's conference for creatives, new versions of the photography bundle products were announced. Article on dslrbodies.com

October 17

Ecosystems versus Alliances. I found several instances of people posting comments recently about the state of cameras similar to the following: "you have to be in an alliance or you'll die." Not at all true. Article on sansmirror.com

October 15

A Curious Observation Prior to the Canon R and Nikon Z announcements, the Internet (and my In Box) was filled with "Sony is Invincible" messages. Article on sansmirror.com

October 14

Does The Lens Mount Matter? First, let's put blame where it belongs: the marketing departments of Canon and Nikon. When you make a claim—our new mount is better—it's up to you to prove it. Article on sansmirror.com

New Z6/Z7 Blog Updates As I’ve been doing with the DSLRs lately, I’m going to start a blog-style set of comments and updates for the new Z6 and Z7 mirrorless cameras. Now with four new observations. Eventually the useful information in these posts will be moved to my review and this blog removed. Article on sansmirror.com Updated 10/18, particularly on CSP comments

October 5

New Z6/Z7 Blog. As I’ve been doing with the DSLRs lately, I’m going to start a blog-style set of comments and updates for the new Z6 and Z7 mirrorless cameras. Eventually the useful information in these posts will be moved to my review and this blog removed. Article on sansmirror.com

September 27

Photokina Observations. Photokina is a great place to observe, even though I often have to do that from afar. The press conferences, the press releases, the order of announcements, who's involved, small details that some gloss over, they all tell a story beyond just "Company X announced Y." Article on sansmirror.com 

September 24

Sigma's L-Mount Plans. Sigma has checked in with an outline of their plans for their part of the L-mount alliance. And yes, another full frame mirrorless camera is coming in 2019. Article on sansmirror.com

Boo Nikon! If you click on NikonUSA's Web site and go to the Nikkor Z System Lenses page, you now get all the currently available F-mount lenses as well as the Z-mount ones. This is exceedingly deceptive. Article on sansmirror.com

Photokina Odds and Ends. This is where you'll find commentary about things other than the usual cameras and lenses I cover that were introduced at Photokina 2018. Latest addition on top. Article on dslrbodies.com

The Full Frame Lens Race. Well, at least I'm not going to write buzz, buzz about mirrorless full frame cameras. ;~) Article on sansmirror.com

Fujifilm Launches Second Medium Format Camera. Today Fujifilm announced the GFX 50R, their second medium format camera with the Sony 50mp 33x44mm sensor (0.79x crop). Article on sansmirror.comGFX 50R Data Page.

New Baby Elephant Enters Market. Leica, Panasonic, and Sigma have formed a new development group centered around Leica's L-mount (used by the Leica CL/TL crop sensor and SL full frame sensor cameras). This safety-in-numbers move is apparently the way some of the remaining dwarfs intend to take on the triopoly of Canon, Nikon, and Sony, each of whom has their own separate mount. Article on sansmirror.com.

Panasonic Joins Full Frame Squad. After the L-mount alliance announcement, Panasonic unveiled two new full frame mirrorless cameras they're working on, and three lenses. Article on sansmirror.com

New lenses announced at Photokina: Laowa 12mm f/1.8 for m4/3Laowa 17mm f/1.8 for m4/3Irix 150mm f/2.8 Macro for Canon/Nikon/Pentax DSLRsHasselblad 65mm f/2.8, 80mm f/1.9135mm f/2.8 for X1DSigma 28mm f/1.4 ArtSigma 40mm f/1.4 ArtSigma 56mm f/1.4 DNSigma 60-600mm f/4-5.6 ContemporarySigma 70-200mm f/2.8 Sports, Zeiss 40mm f/2 Batis. 

Meanwhile, ProGrade has an article about the differences between the next two generations of cards (CFExpress and SDExpress, if you haven't been paying attention). Well worth reading. Even today we have issues with SD cards and video specs—particularly confusing considering all the different marking—and it looks like this won't go away with the next generation.

All the previous articles for my sites can be found in the Articles Index.


text and images © 2018 Thom Hogan
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