Christmas Prize Draw 2017

Has anyone ditched their system?


Carabosse 15 41.2k 270 England
26 Apr 2018 4:05PM
I have had a 'camera kit' for donkey's years. First film SLRs then, after a brief period with digital compact only, DSLRs and, since 2011, CSCs. I have nearly always owned a compact in addition.

At one point I owned a Panasonic TZ100 . But I got rid of the TZ100 because I felt it was too similar to my MFT system with its 1" sensor compared with MFT's 1.33" sensor.

However I'm beginning to think I may have jumped the wrong way. Maybe I should have kept the TZ100 and got rid of the system kit? I know this means that extreme shallow DOF will become challenging or even impossible but my photography rarely goes there.

These days I mostly use a smaller (but not tiny) sensor compact (Panny LF1) and my MFT gear rarely gets an outing. Kit worth into four figures, even second hand, lies around for weeks on end and I have to make a conscious effort to use it. Although I still sell the odd photo via photo libraries, once in a blue moon, I have taken no new pics for that purpose for a couple of years: cannot be bothered spending anything up to an hour taking and then processing a single photo to get it past QC! On the other hand I have had photos published which were taken with a compact.

Tempted to get rid of everything and to get another TZ100. I know there is now a TZ200 but looking at the comparisons, on here and elsewhere, the TZ200 doesn't appear to be worth the good deal of extra cash (+40%) for a bit more zoom, especially considering there is a loss of f-stop, so to speak, at the wide end.

So before I do something I may regret, I wondered if anyone on EPZ has gone down the 'premium compact' route and ditched their DSLR/CSC system. Smile

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wsteffey 11 13 United States
26 Apr 2018 4:22PM
I used Pentax gear from the K100d from about 2003 to the K70 in 2016. I could not find a do-it-all zoom (approx 18-250) that I liked, and I grew tired of carrying all the extra weight and bulk of a DSLR and two or three lenses. I sold the entire kit and purchased a Panasonic FZ1000. I already had a ZS50, and found that holding such a small camera still was difficult for me and wanted something lightweight, but with a little "substance",, Overall I am happy with the FZ1000, especially in the middle zoom range. Both very wide and very long ends are not up to the DSLR with lenses optimized for those ranges, but again, I was not happy with do-it-all options for the DSLR. I am still working on panning with the FZ1000. Results have been mixed, and I believe it is because of the image stabilization. I will try panning next time with IS off, or horizontal IS disabled. If I still had illusions of photographic greatness I would be missing the DSLR, but now that I am reconciled to being a career amateur, the FZ1000 suits me very well. I made a good decision.
Euan65 Plus
1 316 United Kingdom
26 Apr 2018 8:34PM
I'm certainly thinking about giving up my Canon 6D and lenses for a Panasonic FZ1000 - I had one of those a couple of years ago and sold it to get the 6D, which in retrospect probably wasn't the thing to do.

I also have Canon 1V film SLRs, one of which now needs overhaul to fix shutter bounce and defective flash, so if the 6D goes they'll probably go too and my trusty (and cheap, simple, small and light) Cosina C1 will be used for film.

The Canon stuff is very good, but it's also very heavy and bulky and my back isn't getting any younger.
Big Bri 17 16.4k United Kingdom
27 Apr 2018 8:41AM
How many years ago did you reckon we'd all be giving up our kit for phone cameras ? Smile

I bought myself a new compact last year as a "walkabout" camera, but the quality of the images compared to my Canon 6D is just not in the same league. I guess I could have spent an extra thousand quid and bought the best compact on the market, but the only way I could justify spending that much on a new camera is if I know it's going to be good enough to sell all my other kit.

Personally I'd like to be carrying less weight (in both kit and personally Wink ) but I prefer a larger camera as it fits my large hands better.
27 Apr 2018 10:45AM
I have an old Panasonic LX3 which produces beautiful quality as long as I`m on my game and it was for ages my motorbike camera of choice with my Nikon system at home for "more important" stuff if thats the right expression.
A friend with a camera shop in Perigeuex was retiring and had a Sony A6000 with a wide lens as standard so I spent 300 euros on that. The Sony takes a manual fit converter for 42 screw fit, nikon mount or even canon ect. ect so this is now the tank bag camera when I`m out on the Beemer with the odd weird lens to play with (Try a broken body but sound lenses Zenit Photosniper kit for 40 euros? at a local brocante) Perhaps at 72 years old I use most of my energy wrestling the bike round the french lanes and the thought of a "pocket" camera has won...far cry from three F3 with drives and lenses or my 5x4 plus dark slides and tripod in my pro days. The D800 still makes the most comprehensive raw (nef) files which are a joy to sit and work with but the grab bag kit is just as important in its own way.
Chris_L Plus
4 4.9k United Kingdom
27 Apr 2018 11:17AM

Quote:However I'm beginning to think I may have jumped the wrong way. Maybe I should have kept the TZ100 and got rid of the system kit?
What subjects do you shoot? (I've looked at your epz pf but you say you only keep a handful of photos here and the rest are on your website).

I know you say shallow dof is not a priority but you'd want some control? e.g, if you were able to take this again with different gear would you open up a bit to separate your subject a little better from the background?

What about low light shots, clean high ISO?

When I get a really high quality shot with a phone / compact it's an exception rather than the rule.
If you got rid of everything else and a family member asked if you'd shoot an occasion for them would you feel what you had would be up to the job?
Euan65 Plus
1 316 United Kingdom
27 Apr 2018 11:36AM

Quote:I bought myself a new compact last year as a "walkabout" camera, but the quality of the images compared to my Canon 6D is just not in the same league


I sold my Panasonic FZ1000 to buy a Canon 6D. Obviously the sensor on the FZ is much smaller and it has a fixed lens, but both are 20MP cameras and having several times compared images shot on them I'd have to say that MOST of the time there's not the vast difference in quality. I'm not a professional and never want to be, so my photography is for me and family. I don't print greater than A4 size unless there's a really good picture, and in fact the largest we have in the house is 14" x 20" and was shot on a compact camera. I have an A4 sized print of a portrait of my wife taken on a 3MP Fuji S602 well over a decade ago, and it's a good, clear photograph that could be printed rather larger if wanted.

Where the FZ loses out compared to the 6D is ultra-wide shots and more extreme background defocusing. Other than that, for non-professional use (and AFAIK for some professional use) it's more than good enough. Whilst I never did get around to taking photos to verify it, it did occur to me to wonder exactly what it is that a DSLR can do that cannot be done on a good quality bridge camera, even if it's a bit more fiddly with the bridge. I think the answer is "not a lot".

I'm increasingly of the opinion that, unless one is a professional photographer, hugely expensive DSLRs and their pricey lenses are a waste of money and a heck of a lot of weight to carry around for marginal discernible benefit.
Carabosse 15 41.2k 270 England
27 Apr 2018 1:43PM
Many thanks for the responses (keep ‘em coming) which are much appreciated. Smile At this stage I’ll just pick up on a few of the specific issues raised.


Quote:if you were able to take this again with different gear would you open up a bit to separate your subject a little better from the background?


That was a grab shot, taken on the spur of the moment with an MFT camera and the lens which happened to be on it at the time, max aperture f3.5. I feel sure something like a TZ100 could get a pretty similar result with its max aperture of f2.8.


Quote:What about low light shots, clean high ISO?


Yes. But we are talking about the difference between 1” and 1.33” sensors here. Not the difference between 1” and full-frame.


Quote:If you got rid of everything else and a family member asked if you'd shoot an occasion for them would you feel what you had would be up to the job?


That’s the sort of area which worries me a bit. However, the likelihood is small – an offer I made to be “second shooter” at a relative’s wedding was ignored! But it is the image thing – and I mean one’s personal image rather than the photographic image. Turning up to an event with a fixed-zoom compact does little for one’s credibility but that sort of thing hardly ever happens these days.

I sometimes feel that being a member of EPZ exerts a slight psychological pressure, i.e. you are not a ‘proper’ photographer unless you own an interchangeable lens outfit.


Quote:it did occur to me to wonder exactly what it is that a DSLR can do that cannot be done on a good quality bridge camera, even if it's a bit more fiddly with the bridge. I think the answer is "not a lot".


Yes – hence my posting this thread.



Quote:How many years ago did you reckon we'd all be giving up our kit for phone cameras ?


Don’t think I ever quite said people would “give up” all their photo gear for a phone. But in terms of the proportion of photos taken phones, I think I was on the money as they say. According to some sources 90% of photos are taken (worldwide) on phones or tablets rather than on digital cameras. Doubtless many 'phone photographers' have never even owned a camera and very likely never will.

brian1208 Plus
15 11.5k 12 United Kingdom
27 Apr 2018 1:52PM
I shot canon FF and APS-C until it got too heavy for me

Then I went Olympus m4/3rds and was happy

Then I had muscle wasting problems so sold all that and went for the Panasonic FZ1000 which, as it was just about within my physical capabilities I enjoyed using (but not from choice)

Then they found and cured the cause of my muscle weakness

So I repurchased my Olympus m4/3rds and now use the EM-1mk2 + G9

I have since looked at various options in the better compact / bridge camera ranges and nothing has persuaded me to ditch my m4/3rds for either that option or my new improved mobile phone camera

As I use my kit for competition and sales purposes I suspect it will be the case until such time as I fall off my perch again, but then it would not be a decision based on preference but necessity Smile
Chris_L Plus
4 4.9k United Kingdom
27 Apr 2018 2:00PM
I'm still unsure what it is you mainly shoot CB.

There are photographs of things such as news events where the fact it was caught on camera was the main thing and the IQ is a secondary consideration.

Then there are stunning landscapes, seascapes, portraits etc where the beauty of the colours, the subtle tones, the subtle gradations, the intricate details etc make it something you want to hang on your wall.

I would hate to be in a position where I was unable to capture something because the equipment couldn't really do it justice

If all I took were fun snaps / basic street photography then I'd probably be happy with a premium compact. Someone with one would be snapping away while I'd still be changing lenses.

Euan65 Plus
1 316 United Kingdom
27 Apr 2018 2:41PM

Quote:Then there are stunning landscapes, seascapes, portraits etc where the beauty of the colours, the subtle tones, the subtle gradations, the intricate details etc make it something you want to hang on your wall.


True, but you don't need to have complex, heavy or expensive equipment to do it. I've taken some pretty good shots with my mobile phones (Microsoft Lumia 1020 and 950), some with a 3MP 2002-vintage bridge camera, some with a twenty-five year old Cosina 35mm SLR. Yes, my 6D FF DSLR with an L-series hanging off the end can take beautiful shots, but as ever in this it is not the tool but the knowing how to use it that matters.

As I've said many times before, look at the equipment the greats like Adams or Cartier-Bresson used - it's pretty backward by today's standards, but the results are often amazing. As Adams himself remarked, the most important component of any camera is the twelve inches immediately behind it.

The point of this discussion is fundamentally whether you actually need all that spendy kit, or whether a simpler setup is good enough and perhaps more practical. My view, FWIW, is that for the vast majority of non-pro photography a bridge or high-end compact camera IS good enough. I readily concede that at the edges of photography only more sophisticated equipment will do, but unless those edges are your thing or you need for professional reasons the flexibility it offers, the spendy stuff is pretty much a luxury. If you have the money and the inclination, by all means buy it and enjoy it, but don't pretend it's a necessity.

I spent last weekend in Amsterdam, lugging around two hefty Canon SLRs and four lenses. Some nice shots - I'll post some here when I've got the scanning and tweaking done - but it's a chore to carry it. And on thinking more about it - prompted by the need to overhaul a 1V and memories of sore backs - it's not readily apparent to me that I have taken many shots with the Canon gear that I could not have got with a bridge camera or a simpler and lighter 35mm job.
Chris_L Plus
4 4.9k United Kingdom
27 Apr 2018 4:54PM

Quote:True, but you don't need to have complex, heavy or expensive equipment to do it

So why have you got it?

Quote:I spent last weekend in Amsterdam, lugging around two hefty Canon SLRs and four lenses. Some nice shots
Euan65 Plus
1 316 United Kingdom
27 Apr 2018 5:02PM
Because I thought it would make more of a difference than it actually does. Also, I used to be younger and more willing to lug weight around.
27 Apr 2018 5:15PM

Quote:So why have you got it?


the often quoted and equally often reviled Ken Rockwell once said that very few megapixels were needed in digital photography and once again the question raises its head. I know that most of us looking at EPZ on a reasonable monitor cannot get anywhere near a realistic guess at the size of sensor used to produce an image. The type/quality of other lenses and software, filters ect all shadow the original files status and this is perhaps the modern version of why do press photographers need high quality kit for newsprint images which was often heard pre digital. There is much more to the lusting after high end camera kit than the end resulting image....with film and darkroom kit you had more chance of spotting the difference at a club slide battle where the same projector was used or the prints viewed side by side in the same light.....on here ...not so sure....the amazing will always pop your eyballs, but how they were arrived at is another issue.
Carabosse 15 41.2k 270 England
27 Apr 2018 5:20PM

Quote:I'm still unsure what it is you mainly shoot CB.


I wouldn't say there's anything I mainly shoot. My portfolio is probably a fair reflection of my casual photography. I occasionally shoot indoor events but generally well-lit places which don't require large aperture lenses; some of this stuff gets published in (local) glossies. I don't get money but get paid in kind: free tickets etc. Having owned a TZ100 I'm pretty sure its up to this straightforward task;. even though I currently use MFT equipment I don't find I need fast lenses.

My "commercial" (??) photos are very niche. Example below. But I don't do that stuff any more - too boring! But I do still get very occasional sales: god knows why! grin-light.jpg

9207_1524845369.jpg




Quote:If all I took were fun snaps / basic street photography then I'd probably be happy with a premium compact.


Yes - this is exactly what has prompted me to review the situation. 9207_1446516808.jpg



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