08 January 2016

attempting a slow-but-steady path

For once my new-years imaging resolution is to use the same cameras throughout 2016
If that comes true it might be the hardest thing I've ever done.. not quite, but very true photographically.  Since 2010 I've switched cameras/bodies at least fifteen times - several were due to finances but many were just frivolous adventures.  Finances have stabilized now so it's time to become a photographer again for my main hobby, instead of gear-swapper! 

After the quick and over-eager attempt to make mic4:3 my system of choice, I found the drain in funds to be alarming. Even with great bargains the adventure was becoming a large cash drain.  After more thinking and less rationalizing I returned the camera and sold off a couple of lenses. . and prepared to restore my Pentax collection, which had not quite vanished.

 A 'used' red Pentax  K-50 + 18-55wr kit and a 'like new' HD55-300wr lens arrived soon after - in the K-50 case 'used' meant a shutter count of TWO including the one I took to check the shutter count!  Neither 18-55 nor 55-300 has ever let me down in a way I could attribute to them, and both are weather ready but with greater range than my previous kit. 

I've also picked up a bargain 10-17mm fisheye for max versatility in K mount.  The fisheye zoom has often interested but never joined me; until now I've been a prime ultrawide user, having tried the DA15 and both Sigma 15mm and classic Pentax SMC 17mm fisheyes.  Oh I did have the F 17-28 fisheye briefly, come to think of it.

So I'm set at 10-300mm, and weather resistant above 17mm.
I've never had such a full focal-length range at my disposal!

On the small side of things, I've reverted to Samsung's NX300 rather than going micro4:3. The nx500 has pushed this model aside with its newfangled sensor and 4k video, but my time with the 300 last year left me quite impressed.  The one is white, and will be for my wife; I will add a darker one for myself later.¹ In the meantime I'll be thoroughly testing it out for her with shots like the K50 image above, and hopefully a few more creative offerings. It's been a while since I used a date-stamp camera - more precisely I did not know my previous NX300 had that feature!

I also snatched up a bargain copy of the well-liked 16-50 with OIS for it, so the kit is really small and image stabilized! It boasts a talented 20Mpx APSc sensor and many cool features that I managed to pick up quickly (unlike the G7, sadly).  The white 20-50mm lens came with the camera; it gets fine reviews but its lack of IS makes it less useful compared to the smaller, wider 16-50.  This bargain copy came in black but is available in white; assuming my wife likes this camera, the black lens will be mine & a white 16-50 will come soon for hers!

We'll have no native NX telephoto option right now - but telephoto isn't a good fit anyway for a kit that's buile to be tiny; a PK>NX adapter will do for non-stabilized telephoto shots with good light and/or a tripod.  Maybe later we shall do something about this - but Samsung has implied by its silence that its NX lineup is being phased out, so maybe not?

  I suppose my Q should be worried; the nx is a bit larger but the sensor difference is massive.

¹stay tuned - I found a second white body at an even better sub-$200 price, plus something to make them distinctive :^)  If I can pull this off my wife will be quite impressed with her anniversary gift!