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Obsolescence?

dudler

Time for an update: I still use film, though. Not vast quantities, but I have a darkroom, and I'm not afraid to use it.

I enjoy every image I take: I hope you'll enjoy looking at them.
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Obsolescence…

30 Apr 2021 7:47AM   Views : 225 Unique : 159

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There are sometimes very difficult decisions to make about cameras. Generally, I avoid them by keeping old kit when I upgrade, but occasionally there are problems… Around 2013-14, I was using a Sony Alpha 900 for much of my photography, and it’s a chunky beast by my standards (though it looks pretty slimline and sleek compared with some of Nikon and Canon’s offerings, not to mention a Lumix S1…) And I saw an Olympus OM-D EM-1 in a shop that I had spent a lot of time chatting in.

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Long story short: I own an Olympus outfit, with a lenscap fisheye, five prime lenses, and two zooms, bought for travel – small, light and really very acceptable quality by the standards of the time. A year or so later and I was starting to get used to Sony’s Alpha 7 cameras, and by 2017, I usually left the 900 at home. An A7R II is smaller and lighter, shares the in-body image stabilisation, and has 42mp compared with 24: crucially, it doesn’t have an anti-aliasing filter messing with the sharpness of the images.

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Over the last year, the EM-1 has been jamming from time to time – I’d take a shot or two, then the viewfinder would go black, and the shutter release stop doing anything. Switching off and on again usually cleared it. Last week, it refused to respond… I decided – belatedly – to have a look through the lens throat, and I saw a sight that you shouldn’t see when you take the lens off a mirrorless camera: I saw the shutter.

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A rough estimate is that repair will cost £250. Now, that’s not an excessive price for a new shutter mechanism, but it does pose a conundrum for me, because I have used the camera relatively little for several years. The Alpha 7 is light enough for the whole outfit to travel by air as hand luggage, with a laptop stuffed down the back of my Billingham bag: so I probably won’t have the work done.

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My daughter has a Lumix body, so it’s possible that she’d like some or all of the outfit – a decision will wait until the end of the summer term, when she is free of work for a while. If she decides she doesn’t want the kit, I’ll be looking for a buyer or buyers. 12mm f/2, 17mm f/1.8, 25mm f/1.8, 45mm f/1.8, 60mm f/2.8 macro…

The second body in the kit, an IR-converted Lumix G3 is now surplus to requirements, as I have an Alpha 7 with full spectrum capability. Currently in the hands of a friend, it’s a body that cost £100 with a £300 sensor conversion, and also looking for a new home some time soon. I’ve loved both cameras and the jewelled, miniature precision of the lenses, but I don’t feel the need to keep them on forever…

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Comments


dudler Plus
17 1.6k 1840 England
30 Apr 2021 7:49AM
The lens I've used most in the last year is the 60mm macro - like many macro lenses, it's amazingly sharp, and it's been very handy for quick shots of other cameras to illustrate this blog.

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woolybill1 Plus
14 37 77 United Kingdom
30 Apr 2021 10:47AM
Sorry to hear of the shutter problem, John. Having traded in my E-M1 for a Mark II a year ago a rough guess suggests the £250 would be a reasonable trade-in for the Mark I in full working order.
I can vouch for the lightness of weight, optical quality and excellence of construction of all the lenses apart from the 25mm f1.8 (I have the Panasonic/Leica f1.4). Which means unfortunately that I'll not be in the market for them.
Over the past year I have observed that the 60mm appears regularly near the top of every 'Ten Best Macro Lenses', as does the 30mm Panasonic incodentally; so it's not just my imagination.

Bill
dudler Plus
17 1.6k 1840 England
30 Apr 2021 11:09AM
Of course, a cheap secondhand OM-D might give the kit a new lease of life...

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