What camera?

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
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simonineaston
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Re: What camera?

Postby simonineaston » 8 Mar 2009, 11:59am

Have enjoyed reading all your comments, in the light of my mistake - buying a gorgeous FujiFilm s9600 slr-type camera. It's a totally fab mostly manual camera, with a stonking 28-310mm lens, and even I have managed one or two quite good photos. The mistake though was to imagine that I could carry it around happily on a cycle tour - way too big and brick-like :( It's replacement is a yummy Canon a650 which is just what I should have bought in the first place, being compact, well-made and versatile. (There are several refurb examples available on a certain on-line auction site at the moment...) The remaining issue is one that applies to all cameras, though (as well as iPods, satnav devices etc. etc.), and that is how to keep them clean and dry out on the road...
Well, I think I've found the answer (haven't bought one yet, but "on paper" they look fantastic, as well as good VFM) :D
- and I don't work for the company!
http://www.aquapac.net/ukstore/erol.html
ttfn, Simon in Easton
(currently enjoying a Moulton TSR & a nano Brompton...)

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Si
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Re: What camera?

Postby Si » 8 Mar 2009, 12:05pm

My low tech approach is just to wrap 'em in a thick sock and put that in a plastic bag.

Anyhow, some good info in this thread so have moved it to Too Good to Lose.

Lawrie9
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Re: What camera?

Postby Lawrie9 » 8 Mar 2009, 12:26pm

Oh dear! ...this thread really has brought out the nerd tendency. Most cameras above £50 with a good iso rating, lense and mps above 3 million will be perfect. Even most camera phones are fine. You can also shoot video up to an hour or more depending on the memory card or stick. You can enhance your pics by going to layers on your photo editing software and adjusting brightness, contrast and colour balance etc.
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glueman
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Re: What camera?

Postby glueman » 8 Mar 2009, 1:19pm

Lawrie9 wrote:Oh dear! ...this thread really has brought out the nerd tendency. Most cameras above £50 with a good iso rating, lense and mps above 3 million will be perfect. Even most camera phones are fine. You can also shoot video up to an hour or more depending on the memory card or stick. You can enhance your pics by going to layers on your photo editing software and adjusting brightness, contrast and colour balance etc.

True, though I'd caveat a good lens as being worth a hat full of pixels.

What most people mean by a good camera nowadays is one that's flexible enough for internet image transference rather than say, 20 x 16" gallery prints. So facilities like close-focus and immediate shutter release bring more user benefits than the last degree of programming capability. Most hundred quid cameras will out-resolve ordinary laptop screens as will many half that price.

As an ex-multi SLR user with a battery of lenses it's difficult not to believe, like iPods and the cult hi-fi market, that changing technology has shot our fox.

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patricktaylor
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Re: What camera?

Postby patricktaylor » 8 Mar 2009, 2:02pm

glueman wrote:... As an ex-multi SLR user with a battery of lenses it's difficult not to believe, like iPods and the cult hi-fi market, that changing technology has shot our fox.

At the local camera club exhibitions it's still easy to see the difference between the digital entries and the real prints from a darkroom. The best darkroom prints are still technically superior and more satisfying to look at, and they never fade. I think it's partly the printers rather than always the camera.

There's currently a re-run of an excellent series called 'The Genius of Photography' on BBC2 Saturday evenings. It's as good as you'll get on TV. Episode 4 next week. I'm recording each episode on DVD.

Of course digital photography gives everyone access to DIY colour, but there is something about B and W photography that colour just can't match.

glueman
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Re: What camera?

Postby glueman » 8 Mar 2009, 2:40pm

patricktaylor wrote:
glueman wrote:
Of course digital photography gives everyone access to DIY colour, but there is something about B and W photography that colour just can't match.


Agreed...to a point. I have a 5 x 4 sheet film camera and with silver rich paper and a knowledge of zonal exposure a photographer can create stunning images - it's just that most people don't require that. They want something they can transmit through digital technology for someone else to look at.

Colour image making is much closer with film and digital, though I mourn 35mm transparencies on a suitably slow film stock that could fill the wall of an auditorium. Powerpoint presentations are simpler to produce but not a patch on a well exposed slide IMO. At least not the PPPs I've seen.

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simonineaston
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Re: What camera?

Postby simonineaston » 8 Mar 2009, 3:43pm

For a thorough background in nerdiness, see http://www.6mpixel.org/en/
In short, this site will back up the assertion that you don't need the latest Mega Pixcel offering to take great pix :-)
You do, however, need to keep whatever you bought cosy and clean... I expect a sock and Sainsbo's best sandwich bag will do a fine job :wink:
ttfn, Simon in Easton
(currently enjoying a Moulton TSR & a nano Brompton...)

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Beakyboy
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Re: What camera?

Postby Beakyboy » 16 Mar 2009, 9:09am

Way too complicated for the likes of me, I only wanted a cheap simple camera that was ruggadised ..... I'm off!
May the wind always be at your rear!

stewartpratt
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Re: What camera?

Postby stewartpratt » 18 Mar 2009, 6:10pm

patricktaylor wrote:At the local camera club exhibitions it's still easy to see the difference between the digital entries and the real prints from a darkroom. The best darkroom prints are still technically superior and more satisfying to look at, and they never fade. I think it's partly the printers rather than always the camera.


It's all in the print. To my eye there's an absolutely huge difference between inkjet prints - even very good ones - and photographic prints, whilst it can be extremely difficult (for slow film and low ISO at least) to tell the difference between two photographic prints, one from a negative and the other from digital. It always baffles me when I walk round galleries of ink prints as to why anyone would choose that when photo paper gives so much more punch to the shadows, smoothness in the finer tones, and consistency of hue. Ink's fine on canvas, but on paper? No way Pedro.

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patricktaylor
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Re: What camera?

Postby patricktaylor » 18 Mar 2009, 10:56pm

How do you make a traditional photographic print from a digital image file? (assuming you mean on Ilford Multigrade type photo paper using a liquid developer and fixer, darkroom-fashion)

emergency_pants
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Re: What camera?

Postby emergency_pants » 19 Mar 2009, 12:08am

patricktaylor wrote:How do you make a traditional photographic print from a digital image file? (assuming you mean on Ilford Multigrade type photo paper using a liquid developer and fixer, darkroom-fashion)


I wonder what would happen if you tried to project it onto paper like an enlarger?

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patricktaylor
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Re: What camera?

Postby patricktaylor » 19 Mar 2009, 8:23am

Well, yes. That's what I thought Stewart meant.

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EdinburghFixed
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Re: What camera?

Postby EdinburghFixed » 19 Mar 2009, 8:59am

IMO, to a large extent what you get moving up the price bracket is increased ease of use.

I have a relatively expensive SLR (at the time it was one from the top of the line) and I wouldn't want to move back down, although I'm sure that with extra effort I could still get most of the same results. What frustrates me about cheaper cameras is that you have to really work hard to change basic settings like white balance, ISO, focus, exposure compensation, even the zoom setting (although to be fair, I prefer my lenses like my bikes - fixed!)

This really disturbs me when I just want to be thinking about composition and clicking away.

However if you're willing to work at a compact camera and master it, you can certainly achieve some stunning shots. While there's no questioning the technical quality of a shot taken on a large format film camera, the dry technical merits of a photo are often the least important component (but people focus on them because for money alone, you can improve them - appeals to our society I think).

As an illustration, consider that you can find many breathtaking photos on the internet (at a resolution of under 1MP). Many of them I would prefer on the wall at that resolution to a technically exemplary large format exposure that lacks any power.

To a large extent, if you will use a compact camera more than a larger one, the fact that the larger one has better image quality is irrelevant. I'm going camera-less on my LEJOG because I don't want to haul around my kit... :(

stewartpratt
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Re: What camera?

Postby stewartpratt » 19 Mar 2009, 12:10pm

patricktaylor wrote:How do you make a traditional photographic print from a digital image file?


Use a digital photographic printer which projects red, green and blue lasers at photographic paper.

Photobox, for example, use them: http://www.photobox.co.uk/content/quality/technical

Not exactly the sort of thing you can buy and plonk on the desk next to your PC, of course, but IME the printing costs are well below those of a printer and a load of ink :)

emergency_pants
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Re: What camera?

Postby emergency_pants » 19 Mar 2009, 2:23pm

stewartpratt wrote:
patricktaylor wrote:How do you make a traditional photographic print from a digital image file?


Use a digital photographic printer which projects red, green and blue lasers at photographic paper.

Photobox, for example, use them: http://www.photobox.co.uk/content/quality/technical

Not exactly the sort of thing you can buy and plonk on the desk next to your PC, of course, but IME the printing costs are well below those of a printer and a load of ink :)


Fan-flippin-tastic! I want one of those! I really, really, really dislike home inkjet printers. I have one, but I do often end up using photobox as it's cheaper than buying ink and the heads get clogged and stripey unless you use it all the time! Now I know Photobox use these, I'm even more likely to use them!