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Photography Equipment & Software Thread


rundll
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There is a debate about the GF1 v GF2 v GF3 on the previous pages. I like the GF2 (I paid £449 with the 14mm lens, best is currently £330) best, furq likes the GF1, nobody likes the GF3. They are all fantastic cameras (and I now genuinely love mine), but if I was you I'd go for:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Olympus-XZ-1-Digital-Camera-i-Zuiko/dp/B004G8QSTO/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1313054176&sr=8-1

Olympus XZ1. £315 there, which is a very good price. The GFs are probably definitely upgradeable and have a lot more options, but the Olympus saves you from having to mess around with extra lenses and it's very good. It's a great first camera with as many options as you'll realistically need for a very long time.

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I think in the UK if they record for over 29 minutes in a single cut they're classed as video cameras and get taxed more, not an issue for you though. That Olympus does look rather swanky in white and the f1.8 lens is impressive. I want that.

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I think the XZ-1 is much, much better suited to being a first camera - it's a point and shoot with lots of manual options added so you can just trust it while you're getting to grips. It's got a fantastic lens with stabilization and the similar Panasonic lens isn't anywhere near as good. If you don't mind only having a prime lens (no zoom at all) then the Panasonics do become better (and that's what I use), but that doesn't really suit holiday snapping particularly well.

But they're both great, so you're fine to let it come down to personal/financial choice.

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Another vote for the XZ-1 as a beginner's cam. Easy to use out of the box, but it'll grow with you - PASM, RAW support, support for wireless flashes, optional EVF. Does a great job in low light, and at the longer end makes a great portrait camera. Fantastic lens.

The only argument against it being a good camera to get to grips with is the fact that it's a bugger to actually grip. I've added a Franiec Grip to mine, other people use Flipbacs or just stick-on grippy strips. I've also added a Wii wrist-strap, although it does come with a nice neck-strap, if that's what you prefer.

The batteries aren't exactly infinite, so I'd pick up a spare before going travelling, particularly if you're going to be using an EVF. It doesn't come with a proper charger either, just an iPod style power-to-USB doohickey which you connect straight to the camera. You can buy proper chargers easily enough, though.

Top budget hint - most of the Olympus Tough cameras use the same battery and charger (Li50B battery, Li50c charger). Given the outdoorsy nature of those cameras, people tend to accidentally drop them in lakes or down mountains, leaving behind an orphaned charger and spare battery at home, which they then put on Ebay just to get rid of them. I paid 10 NZD (about 5 GBP) each for a spare second-hand battery and a charger, both official Olympus.

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There is a debate about the GF1 v GF2 v GF3 on the previous pages. I like the GF2 (I paid £449 with the 14mm lens, best is currently £330) best, furq likes the GF1, nobody likes the GF3.

To clarify, like many, I think the GF1 is great for *enthusiasts*, but it's not for everyone. It's not really pocketable, for starters.

And I think the GF3 has more in common with the GF2, than the GF2 has with the GF1 - that's what we were arguing/discussing. :)

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To clarify, like many, I think the GF1 is great for *enthusiasts*, but it's not for everyone. It's not really pocketable, for starters.

And I think the GF3 has more in common with the GF2, than the GF2 has with the GF1 - that's what we were arguing/discussing. :)

Not that it matters but I am not sure I agree. The GF2 looked like a logical successor to the GF1 whereas the GF3 looks like it is aimed at a slightly different photographer - removal of the hotshot etc,

The GF1 with 20mm lens was pretty portable - I got it in a coat pocket okay.

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The GF2 looked like a logical successor to the GF1...

You're kidding?

For the GF2, Panasonic REMOVED loads of enthusiast features (several manual controls, flash comp, remote socket etc), added a touchscreen, and offered inferior lenses.

Most reviews (and GF1 owners) PANNED it for moving away from the enthusiast route.

The GF1 with 20mm lens was pretty portable - I got it in a coat pocket okay.

Still heavy in a coat pocket, though. You wouldn't forget it was there. And it would f**k up the pocket.

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Furq, please can you explain what's missing from the GF2 compared to the GF1? My GF1 got stolen and I'm about to get a replacement off insurance and was going to go for a GF2 as logically it seemed that all they'd done was shrunk the body and added the touchscreen... cheers.

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Panasonic GF-1 or GF-2? Does anyone here have a GF-2?

I've been reading lots of stuff online comparing the two. Opinions vary. On the GF-2 the touchscreen is supposed to be good, you keep the manual dial for shutter/aperture and you can assign some of the manual buttons from the GF-1 to a quick function button for instant access. Of course it's also lighter and smaller. On the downside, you are sacrificing a remote trigger cable port, and I don't know if I like the idea of having to use a touchscreen for travels (bright light etc could be a pain). I'm torn!

Does anyone here use touchscreen cameras? How do you get on with them?

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Panasonic GF-1 or GF-2? Does anyone here have a GF-2?

I've been reading lots of stuff online comparing the two. Opinions vary. On the GF-2 the touchscreen is supposed to be good, you keep the manual dial for shutter/aperture and you can assign some of the manual buttons from the GF-1 to a quick function button for instant access. Of course it's also lighter and smaller. On the downside, you are sacrificing a remote trigger cable port, and I don't know if I like the idea of having to use a touchscreen for travels (bright light etc could be a pain). I'm torn!

Does anyone here use touchscreen cameras? How do you get on with them?

I have the GF2 as my second camera as of about 2 months ago. I really love it, it has to be said - took a while to get going with it but it's great. I wouldn't even consider trading it for a GF1, the features it loses are more than balanced out by the touch-screen in my opinion. That's an easier decision to make when I've got everything the GF1 did (and considerably more) in my main camera though.

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Ordered a VF-2 viewfinder today! Price has come down enormously here, $400 to $280 (NZ Dollars), and I've just got a new contract, so I've caved.

Thought about waiting for the VF-3 with the hotshoe lock, but it's lower resolution and the magnification is only 0.95x rather than the VF-2's 1.5x. Also, I don't think it comes in black to match my XZ-1.

Question for other XZ-1 owners - do you shoot 4:3 or 3:2?

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Ordered a VF-2 viewfinder today! Price has come down enormously here, $400 to $280 (NZ Dollars), and I've just got a new contract, so I've caved.

Thought about waiting for the VF-3 with the hotshoe lock, but it's lower resolution and the magnification is only 0.95x rather than the VF-2's 1.5x. Also, I don't think it comes in black to match my XZ-1.

Question for other XZ-1 owners - do you shoot 4:3 or 3:2?

Just ordered the VF-2 myself and the grip you recommended.

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Does anyone else here use Lightroom? Just got it and not really sure how to use it beyond messing with all the sliders and seeing if the photo looks better. Are there any good tutorial videos that sort of go through the whole function of lightroom and what results it gets?

Also - do people here use Lightroom AND iPhoto, or are they mutually exclusive? I ask because I'm working on a Macbook Air, so with only 128gb hard drive I don't really want to have photos duplicated in two libraries. At the moment all of my photos (about 20gb) are in iPhoto, so is it possible to do some editing in Lightroom and then save the photo and just reimport it back into iPhoto (without there being an extra copy left in Lightroom). Thanks.

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Not sure sorry, I use aperture on my ma an that certainly makes a second library, but I think you can tell it where you want the photos stored...

Quick question. I'm off to a rally tomorrow. I've never had a camera at a rally before. What advice would you give me for shooting the cars. Not just technical camera setup, but positioning of myself to get exciting views/angles.

EDIT: it's also most likely going to be grey, dull and wet, so not much sunlight or interesting skies...

Ant

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Finally been getting some good results from my glidecam, have to use a big ole wide angle to make it heavy enough but I'm going to get a battery grip soon and see if that helps to use it with a smaller lense. Been clmabering all over the top of the abandoned buildings near Reading today, felt proper ninja :D

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Does anyone else here use Lightroom? Just got it and not really sure how to use it beyond messing with all the sliders and seeing if the photo looks better. Are there any good tutorial videos that sort of go through the whole function of lightroom and what results it gets?

Also - do people here use Lightroom AND iPhoto, or are they mutually exclusive? I ask because I'm working on a Macbook Air, so with only 128gb hard drive I don't really want to have photos duplicated in two libraries. At the moment all of my photos (about 20gb) are in iPhoto, so is it possible to do some editing in Lightroom and then save the photo and just reimport it back into iPhoto (without there being an extra copy left in Lightroom). Thanks.

You'd be better doing everything in Lightroom. Greetings cards and calendars aside, I don't think iPhoto does anything better than Lightroom does.

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Yes, it's a different product. LIghtroom works with virtual copies to do non destructive editing (the changes are stored in a database). You can keep your folder structure but the database will get bigger as time goes on. 128gb is fairly small.

It's perfectly designed for what you;re after though as it's designed as a complete workflow tool.. it does take a bit of getting used to but once you've made the leap it's an awesome product.

This is a great book

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Photoshop-Lightroom-Adventure-Mikkel-Aaland/dp/0596521014/ref=sr_1_43?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1313492988&sr=1-43

its for version 2, but all of it is still valid as theres only been a few additions in 3 (Noise Reduction/lens correction and some other small bits and bobs)

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This has probably been discussed before but what are people's opinions on the Tamron SP AF 17-50mm F/2.8? I'm thinking about getting rid of my terrible kit lens on the 20D without breaking the bank too much y'see and this looks like a strong candidate. I find myself using my thrifty 50 at any given opportunity due to my kit lens being so shoddy and that also has it's drawbacks.

Thanks.

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This has probably been discussed before but what are people's opinions on the Tamron SP AF 17-50mm F/2.8? I'm thinking about getting rid of my terrible kit lens on the 20D without breaking the bank too much y'see and this looks like a strong candidate. I find myself using my thrifty 50 at any given opportunity due to my kit lens being so shoddy and that also has it's drawbacks.

Thanks.

I've had one for a while and it's excellent, an easy recommendation

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