With Nikon’s D800 at a whopping 36 megapixels, why on earth did I opt for a medium format digital camera? I’ve been a Nikon shooter for years and have a bunch of professional Nikon glass and speedlites so adding a D800 to the mix seems a no brainer – or is it? There are many reasons. Bigger chip, bigger sensor. More real estate and bigger pixels. Insanely shallow depth of field. Full 16-bit color depth. Insane dynamic range and detail. To name a few. Oh, and I’m not abandoning 35mm – I’m holding steady to my D3s for everything else I won’t shoot on the Hassy.
Read the full blog post about my switch to Hasselblad here.
Please subscribe and leave your questions and comments below.Read More »
The Canon T4i / 650D continues the line of fantastic, feature packed entry level cameras for beginners. When it comes to reviewing entry level cameras you have to look at them not as a pro but as a beginner. With that said this is a solid solid camera even though it is slightly more expensive than its Nikon counterpart.
I tested out this camera with the 18-55 Kit lens both for stills and video. You all know my feelings on kit lenses at this point but for those who don’t, I am not really a fan. I think they are a waste of money right off the bat and there are other better options out there. The thing is most new photographers do not know this so we can not hold it against them for purchasing the kit lenses. I started that way, I had kit lenses until I knew better.
The kit lens is fine, its nothing special, it will capture the moments well enough for the everyday shooter. Its fine for video though you will hear the autofocus motors moving if you choose to not shoot manual. What I will say is the sooner you graduate from kit lenses and understand how important better glass is the better off you will be.
The T4i handled very well, I loved the touch screen option for setting the camera, previewing images as well as zooming in on them. It was much more responsive then I had ever imagined and it left me wanting the same option on my Nikon D4.
There seems to be this trend to move towards thinner and smaller lenses known as Pancake lenses. Canon put out a 40mm 2.8 Prime lens that I picked up at AllensCamera to play with and review. I have been using this lens on the Canon T4i and have come to a simple conclusion.
This lens is a $200 no questions asked winner. The reason I say its no questions asked is the fact that its very inexpensive for what you get. The build quality is top of the line from the metal mount to the feel in your hands. With that said this is a very very small and light weight lens, thus the pancake design.
Canon tries to market this as a discreet lens for when you don’t want people to know your taking pictures. I think thats a marketing joke and not something I would ever promote a lens for.
This lens is fast focusing, sharp all the way through and very very light. Sometimes you may think its to light and small. For example when you are shooting video its not out of the question that your finger finds its way into your frame while trying to focus the very very thin focusing ring.
When the Nivelo 245BK from Vanguard landed on my doorstep I was thinking what in the world would I do with such a small tripod? This is truly a very small and compact metal tripod that does not seem like it would server a huge purpose. I was actually wrong, there is a nice place in my bag or car for a tripod just like this.
Not only is it small and made out of metal it has some very interesting features to make setting it up and breaking it down easier. You have this four twist locking system for each leg that allows you to either extend each of the four sections or just one section at a time. This is a really nice feature that I would like to see added to some of the pro tripods.
Don’t get me wrong, this is not a tripod that I would put my Nikon D4 on but this is perfect for smaller entry DSLR cameras as well as point and shoots. Just like there is not one bag to rule them all there is not one tripod to rule them all. Sometimes have a few different options will allow you to take the right tripod for you wherever you are going.
For example I recently went to Florida and wanted to travel light with a small tripod to use to hold the Nikon D3200 while it was filming. I used the Nivelo while I was near the pool with the D3200 and 24-70 2.8. I was not worried that it would one fall in the pool or two tip over. A quick tip for tripods is make sure that the lens lines up with one of the legs to that it does not tip over.
Who is this tripod for? If you do a lot of hiking, trekking or traveling where you can only take what you can pack, carry or attach to your bag than this could be a nice option for you. This is not an inexpensive tripod at $150, but it really does hold up its end of the deal by giving you the ability to still take a tripod into places where you may not have been able to before.Read More »
I cam across the Vanguard Tripods when I was at CES this year in Las Vegas. I asked for a few tripods to test out and the Alta Pro 263 AT was one of them. This metal tripod is only $149.99 for the legs and a quality head will be anywhere from $60-$100.
With that said for $250 to get a solid well built quality tripod you can not go wrong. A lot of people cheap out on a tripod and spend $100-$150 for one of those plastic not very good tripods. This is a tripod you buy once and you should have it for 10+ years without issues.
I use this tripod with my Nikon D4 for both still images and video. I even travel with this tripod as its not terribly to heavy.
The bottom line it is built very well, easy to use and full of great features and functions. Be sure to check out AllensCamera.com to pick up this or other Vanguard Products.Read More »
Sigma recently announced their new 50-150 2.8 OS lens for both Nikon and Canon cropped sensor cameras. This is a very interesting range, it is similar to what you would find on a full frame camera if you were to use a 70-200 2.8.
On a Canon cropped sensor camera this lens would be a 80-240mm 2.8 and on the Nikon it would be a 75-225 2.8. What this means is you have an amazing range for everything from sports to portraits.
Here is a statement new photographers make to me all the time, “im going to go full frame soon” or “Im getting a full frame camera in a few years”. What they are trying to say is they think they should not pick up cropped sensor lenses. I think that is the wrong mentality. Yes you should be picking up lenses that will serve you well for a long time. But you should not pass up a great cropped sensor lens because one day you may end up with a full frame camera.