Tired of lugging a DSLR around......

Discussion in 'Nature' started by jeff_hostetler, May 6, 2010.

  1. I am have become tired of lugging around my D300, big lenses, and a tripod that supports it all. It is getting to the point that I just don't go out with my gear unless I am shooting close to the truck, etc. I am drawn to more intimate type landscapes, macros, and don't do much wildlife. So here is the questions:
    1) Has anyone else experienced this phenomenon?
    2) I am thinking of selling my gear and going with the Lumix GF1 or the Olympus EP2 or PL-1. Not much in the way of lens choice and they are pricey; however so much lighter and compact. Does anyone have experience with either of these?
    What say you?
     
  2. Sounds like you need a more comfortable pack and a lighter tripod. I'd really miss my D300 if I went with one of the little guys ... but then I need the action-ish performance more than I need the petite payload. Is it an either-or situation for you, budget-wise?
     
  3. Why not a smaller Nikon DSLR and maybe smaller lenses?
     
  4. Maybe a D5000 for reducing weight instead of a whole new system? And as Matt said, a travel tripod.
     
  5. I have a D3 and big lenses like the 200-400 f4 and tripod with a bunch of RRS attachments. I only use those around town. When I travel or go hiking I leave the tripod at home and take my D90, 12-24DX, 18-70DX, and 70-300 VR.
     
  6. If you want to go simple......as I did....when I dont want the weight and hassle of the 1DMk3, and L's from 24-70 up to 500f4, I take my Canon G9, or my recently acquired Ricoh GRD3.
    Canon G9:
    [​IMG]
    and again:
    [​IMG]
    Image quality from these small cameras is really very good. If you want even lighter than the G9 the little Ricoh is as good as it gets - small dedicated Ricoh site recently uploaded here: http://multimedia.streamlinenettrial.co.uk/ricoh/intro.html
     
  7. I have a GF1 that I carry just in case, when I don't expect to be shooting. It is a neat little camera, with much of the feel of the old rangefinders (using the external finder). But it just doesn't measure up to a D300 in terms of image noise and speed of operation. In other words, it is the best camera to have with me when I didn't feel like bringing another. I use a light-weight lens combination on the D300 (Nikon 16-85, Tokina 50-135) when I am traveling light but expecting to shoot, and the faster pro lenses on a D3 when the purpose is a planned shoot.
     
  8. Shoot large format for a while. Then your current setup will seem light. On a more practical note - don't take everything with you, and try using a few light primes. I'm always making choices so that I can travel light.
     
  9. 1. Yes.
    2. I have a G1 with the kit lens and a Rayqual adapter that lets me use my Nikon AI lenses. The kit lens is equivalent to 28-90 in 35mm terms, and this covers most of my needs. The Nikon lenses are all manual, of course, but it's nice to be able to take along, say, a 55/3.5 micro or 180/2.8 to supplement the kit lens for special circumstances.
     
  10. Like Robert Budding said "Shoot large format for a while. Then your current setup will seem light."
    I shot LF for years and my DSLR is so liberating. I also have a G9 for those
    "lazy days"
     
  11. I think the GF-1 is a splendid idea. Just don't sell your Nikon before you buy it, use two together to decide which combination suits you better.
     
  12. Thanks for all of the input. Unfortunately, I am thinking that I need to sell the D300 to move into a different setup.......
    Again thanks for the replies and if there are any others out there, please chime in.
     
  13. I figured this out myself about a year and half ago, after carrying heavy stuff up and down Yosemite with the family. What I did was buy a pair of lightweight kit lenses 18-55mm VR and 55-200mm VR and use them on my old D80. Really, they do about 90% of what I want on these family outings. I also have a polarizer and a Canon 500D, plus SB-800 flash. If you don't need the fast AF of the D300 or its 1/250 sync, the D5000 just might do the job for you, along with compact AFS lenses. You could then use it on a very light travel tripod such as Benro Travel Angel A-169 or even their carbon fibor equiv. They fold down to about 16 inches!
    Kent in SD
     
  14. It's a reasonable course of action if the size and weight are really that bad. You do lose some things in the tradeoff - lens selection, as you said, and high ISO performance and AF performance to name a couple. Try one of the Micro 4/3 cameras and see how it handles before doing anything drastic, and do try the D5000 because it puts a very similar sensor to your D300 into a much lighter package (sacrificing some performance features and the extra-robust body in the bargain, but still it takes most of the same lenses and the resulting images are very similar).
     
  15. I'm not interested in hauling my Canon DSLR and lenses around either, unless for special projects. So I do most of my casual photography with a Canon "superzoom", a SX10 IS. With its 28-560mm equivalent lens, 10MP, IS, all modes, hotshoe, video mode, etc., it works for lots of my photography. I have a small bag for it that is easy to carry around, can carry extra AA batteries and my Canon 430EX flash should I need it. I find myself shooting a lot more by being able to have this relatively lightweight setup with me most of the time.
     
  16. Have you considered the Nikon D3000? Hard to believe anything is much smaller and lighter. The kit zoom is kinda slow action for action, but is near macro for close up objects.
     
  17. If it were simply a weight issue just downsize your kit a smaller DSLR, a wide angle prime, and a lighter telephoto like a 70-300. With a smaller camera you could get away with a lighter tripod as well. Just be sure to leave your Super Bowl ring in the truck so it doesn't fall off on the trail.
     
  18. I am in the same situation with my Pentax DSLR gear, even with the very compact prime lenses. To go light, I carry a Panasonic FZ-28 superzoom compact for its reasonable image quality and very light weight. I have telephoto options with the compact that I can't afford or am unwilling to lug with the DSLR. The tradeoff is that the detail is just not there, and I have little in the way of a crop option; I must compose more carefully. I must work around the in-camera noise reduction that smears detail. When the image quality is of prime importance, it's lugging the DSLR, every time.
     
  19. I gave some thought a while back to getting one of the segway scooters that is designed for trail riding. They can be outfitted with some pretty nifty looking cargo cases as sort of saddle bags. and supposedly have a 12 mile range. I opted for a Canon G 10 instead. But the segway is not off the idea list for schlepping a lot of dreck quietly and cleanly for a few miles with low strain on the schlepper. They just cost way too much.
     
  20. I'm putting in my vote for "go with the GF1". Though I know you said you have to sell your gear to move to a new system...I would see if there's a way to keep it. The m4/3 cameras are wonderful, light, and has great image quality...it just can't stand up to a DSLR...at least not yet.
    But the GF1 with the 20mm f/1.7 pancake lens has become my ultimate travel camera. It goes with me everywhere from just going to the office to going with me on my all too frequent business trips out to Japan where I just can't see myself lugging my Canon gear with me. I don't regret the purchase and I have gotten more than my money's worth from this neat little camera.
     
  21. I was lugging my 5d, couple of lens, and tripod around on a short hike to go find something worth shooting. I was thinking that this load was starting to feel kind of heavy. Then, I ran across an old guy with a wooden 8x10" camera, a pretty serious tripod, and all the other stuff that goes along with it. I realized that the old guys were just tougher than us. :)
    P.S. For when I am particularly lazy I do have LX3 that I really like, although I am thinking about getting one the 4/3s.
     
  22. I usually take my G9 with me; but today I traded in several lenses for these 2 babies:
    1. Nikkor AF-S 18-70 (WAY sharper than the Nikkor 18-135; I can't believe the difference. Enlarging the images shows me the same level of detail I get from the IS lens on my G9, the 18-135 never came close.)
    2. Nikkor AF-S 35/1.8. What a cool lil lens. Sharp as heck and such a delight to shoot. Haven't tried it in low light conditions yet but am more than happy with it. The colours, contrast and AF-S are, to me, superb. Funny how you know when the lens is screwed on to the camera and you look through the viewfinder and it all just feels right. No more heavy Tamron and Sigma 2.8 zooms for me.
    They're super light, sharp and make carrying my D80 around for a fun travel/street shoot a realistic option!
     
  23. How about leaving the tripod in the truck and shooting handheld with high shutter speeds? I normally limit my load to camera (Canon 5D) + two lenses which all fit into a small bag. I find having a small number of lenses forces me to be a bit more creative with the ones I bring.
    I like the large format idea. I recently sold all my LF kit and the whole works without the big old tripod weighed about 28lbs.
     
  24. I have the Canon G10 for my walk-around photography, and for $500, it is a fantastic camera. I went out and took some handheld shots with my RB67 the other day, and that made me think even the 5D with grip and 24-70 was light, so it's definitely all in the perspective. My first dSLR was a Pentax *istD, and I really enjoyed using that with an old 28mm and 50mm lens. I'm with the others above that would suggest a couple good primes rather than trading the whole kit in-I've played around with a coworkers D300 with 50mm prime, and I found it was very lightweight and easy to handle.
     
  25. I suggest don't give up on your DSLR, but get something alongside that will be convenient to carry.
    After nearly 2 decades of SLR photography I found liberation in a "big sensor point and shoot" -- a Fuji S100fs. I does not replace my DSLR but complements it, the mirrorless design, live view and articulating LCD is a big plus especially for handheld shots with fill flash, with the small sensor adding value on the DoF front. Unfortunately it is discontinued and similar follow up models from Fuji are presently struggling to match up. Results at ISO 100 raw are shockingly close to my D200 and print nicely up to 12x16. At anything above ISO 100, it is no match for DSLRs though. All said -- this has enabled me to get shots I could never get with my DSLRs for certain given situations.
    Some shots with the S100fs below. I am approaching a number of about 500 keepers in 12 months, curiously higher than my exclusively DSLR days. Usability advantages notwithstanding, the sole reason for that is I am more motivated to grab this piece of equipment, go out and shoot all day.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    PS: My D200 is currently on sale as I am poised to switch to a Panasonic M4/3 system. After months of deliberation, I decided the M4/3 is the optimal system for my type of photography -- excellent portability with image quality a few notches higher than the S100fs.

    For low light and action and for huge enlargements, you still need to keep the DSLR around. My decision of a complete switch was easy because my niche is closeups, but nature photographers may have diverse needs. Ok, perhaps not a "complete switch" because I still have and use my film SLRs.
     
  26. I guess it's all what you are used to. My gear bag weighs about 40 pounds with my tripod slung below it and it goes with me pretty much everywhere I go.
     
  27. Some years back I lugged a bag containing a 35mm film body, motor drive, several very heavy zoom lenses, a couple of prime lenses and a lot of film around on a two week trip abroad. I got some good pictures, but was so tired of carrying the bag around and having to be constantly aware of it, that it soured me on photography for quite a while. When I got back into actively shooting - almost twenty years later - I decided that I would limit what I would carry. Unless I have a specific reason for bringing something else, my normal kit is a shoulder bag containing a DSLR body, usually with a zoom lens attached and maybe an additional, faster prime lens. I figure that if I can't get the shot with what I have, then so be it.
    I think that one has to find a balance between the type of end product that you want - a picture on the web, a large print, etc. - and the appropriate type/amount of equipment that will deliver that type of picture and that you are willing to carry around. If you can't reconcile the two, you will just end up being frustrated.
     
  28. Before you do any move, try if you like the handling. I like my compact camera for what it is: a small simple camera to carry everywhere and be able to snap up those few. But as an activity, it doesn't do at all what I like, and then suddenly the heavy bag is just worth it. Maybe it's me, but I severly like the "seclusion" of a viewfinder - watching a LCD at arms length is just not cutting it compared to that.
    So, those who suggest a D5000, I'm quite with that. A 16-85 VR with it, and you can leave the tripod home too.
     
  29. I have a Nikon D300 and I recently bought a Panasonic GF1. The D300 has slightly better image quality (the biggest difference is actually in the post-processing workflow, sot this is bound to improve), but the Panasonic is far more compact than any Nikon DSLR when the camera and lens are considered together. They are in many ways different cameras; some things the Nikon does better, in others Panasonic holds the lead.
    For the Panasonic has currently two main weaknesses (and I think these affect all m4/3 cameras). The first is the raw processing workflow, with the different options that I tried so far are good but could be better (I'm talking image quality here, smoothness and speed are certainly not worse than Nikon). The second one is the lens selection, which is limited. For macro, you need an adapter and a macro lens and then AF might be bad or none at all. However, this is more about ergonomics; if you work from a tripod and don't mind the hassle of adapters, then things can work fairly well.
    As far as price goes, m4/3 is a bit pricey right now, but my impression of the Panasonic is that it's very high quality, certainly not some $100 digicam. The Olympus E-P2 gave me a similar impression, these cameras are obviously for the more quality conscious crowd.
     
  30. Just to add to my post: I still use my Nikon as the main camera, since it has a broad lens selection and is very balanced for different shooting circumstances. But when I take my Hasselblad out, I can take just the Panasonic and Hasselblad instead of Nikon and Hasselblad, which is a big plus.
    Same goes for LF, but honestly I rarely feel the need to lug around the LF gear and my LF system is quite limited anyway, 6x6 just goes a long way with current films. Ditto for the Panasonic; m4/3 is really a milestone in terms of usability, portability and image quality.
     
  31. I think we all get tired of carrying the big heavy stuff now and then. I'm headed for a three day mini vacation next weekend, and I'm going to carry two cameras: an old Fuji s6000 (amazing RAW quality from a 6MP camera), and my new Canon G11. The G11, at the proper settings, also has pretty amazing IQ. At first I was going to lug the whole case - D200, lenses, big tripod, small tripod, spare everything - and then I realized I just didn't want to mess with that kind of load this time. I still love my "big" setup, but the two lightweights I mentioned are what I use when I just don't feel like carrying major weight. The G11, in particular, is small enough that it can be a stealth camera.
     
  32. You would not want to give up Image Quality to something with less IQ, that's the price we pay to use good gear.
     
  33. You would not want to give up Image Quality to something with less IQ, that's the price we pay to use good gear.
     
  34. it is not that you have to go lighter in gear, and change gear altogether. it is that you have to do a rethink concerning your procedures that you use the take the shots. the very first question you ask yourself is WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO SHOOT AND WHAT DO YOU NEED TO SHOOT IT WITH? then you leave everything else in the car. if you are going to shoot distant birds and animals then you need a tripod and a big lens. AND THAT IS ALL. maybe add spare memory and battery. why take all the gear with you just not to use it.
    i spent last august out west in national parks having driven there. i had all my gear with me in the car. 2 tripods 2 dslrs 12 lenses and enough other stuff that i filled 3 camera bags with it. when we got to a np i determined what i was going to shoot and took the gear to shoot just THAT. i usually ended up with a dslr on the tripod and maybe another do all lens in a bag clipped to my belt. and my tripod is a bogen that weighs a ton with a heavy duty head. not light but a lot better thatn it would be if i had taken the 3 camera bags full. it is my intent to get a carbonfiber tripod and head if i go west again in august. the bogen is great. it will hold the biggest lens anybody could buy, but the weight is impressive. one of the walking trips was in yellowstone, and we went almost 2 miles one way. the trippod got heavy but was not unbearable.
     
  35. I take the gear that delivers the photo quality I want. If I want to photograph birds, then I have to take the heavier stuff... or downsize a bit to a 300mm f/4 + TC which is the absolute minimum. After that I don't take photos of that subject type. I could lose the tripod if I went with Canon for their 300/f4 IS, but haven't been willing to pay the price for the brand conversion. -g-
     
  36. I have three levels<br>

    A 5D and four L lenses. Two of them are three pounds apiece<br>
    An XTi and an 18-55i IS<p>
    An Elph


    All three get use.
     
  37. Going lighter is extremely liberating if you think you gear is too heavy, which is something that has happened to me as I age. I would keep the heavier gear for when you are near your truck or want it for something special. Go light when you aren't near your truck and photography will become fun again. You will soon know which is more important to you; light or more flexability/quality.
     
  38. I've been impressed with the micro 4/3rds. It uses a DSLR sensor in a smaller package. Unfortunately, it doesn't have the focusing and processing speed of a DSLR. The same goes for the Sigma DP2.

    One day, there will be a compact camera that has the IQ and speed of a DSLR and I'll be on that real fast. I hate taking SLRs - film or digital. Some times I'll hike it a couple of miles or so, and walking with a pack can take the fun out of it. And if it's for a longer duration, I need to be taking other things instead of a bulky camera.

    Anyway, the whole DSLR is just sticking to the film SLR paradigm and that was done to solve the problem of looking through the lens and not exposing film. There's no need for it in the digital age. With digital, much smaller, ergonomic and efficient form factors can be accomplished.

    It has been done before. When roll film came out, most camera makers changed the camera form - away with the looking through the glass and focusing.

    Now, to head off the comments about how the DSLR system allows folks to use their existing lenses, I have to say that it is true, but considering how people move between brands often (and subsequently having to rebuild their lens collection), I really don't think that's what the motivation is on the camera makers part. I think it's more of not having to build new tooling for a different lens mounts and whatnot - but that's just a guess. Or it could be just plain marketing - folks have this preconceived notion of what a camera should be, especially of what a "professional" camera should be and the manufacturers are just making what sells.
    Gimme small, fast and high IQ and I'm there! It can be done - I don't see any technological barriers to doing that.
     
  39. Nothing wrong with having two different systems for different applications or needs. Shooting with two or more systems is quite common. I have big, fast zooms and larger camera bodies for when I need such, and will just be walking from the car into a building, or for short distances.
    For more long-term trekking or bicycling, I like a small body and small lenses. So small, I can use a belt case or two and go strap free. I take a small camera body with one small lens on it in a belt case. I use either a sturdy-built "fanny" type case, or a small "mini" style DSLR holster case, depending which setup I'll be carrying. The other lenses I may take along are small enough to also fit into the case, or can be put into a pocket, or into another lens belt case.
    As an alternative system, you might consider the quite small, light, Pentax K-x and some high-end very small Pentax prime lenses, such as the DA 21mm f/3.2 Limited, and FA 43mm f/1.9 limited. These "pancake" lenses are of excellent build quality, and only about 1 inch long! The DA 40mm Limited is about as small as it gets, though at f/2.8 not as fast as the 43mm. IQ is excellent from these lenses. Ultra-portability, but still with a DSLR. The Pentax DA 55-300mm zoom is small and light for this range, and produces good quality.
     
  40. What about the Canon PowerShot S90? I am thinking about getting one, gets glowing reviews on the Web. The G11 is nice but not really pocket-able.
     
  41. Get a Panasonic or Olympus m4/3 system and you'll never want to go back. I was skeptical of that thought until I had a GF1 for about a month. Now I'm considering selling my dSLR stuff, I don't see much need for it.
    If you go with a small camera, make sure you don't get one with a small CCD sensor like the Canon G series if you're serious about wanting to blow up photos, it's just not as good at keeping noise down ad the larger sensor alternatives.
    I can pack my entire assortment of lenses, the camera, and a good flash in a fairly small bag. It's all light weight, so you have less stringent tripod requirements as well.
     
  42. I have a Panasonic G1 with adapters for Olympus OM lenses and one for Nikkor lenses. The camera is just a terrific piece of photographic equipment. I have no reservations about using it anywhere. I have taken it backpacking, to indoor concerts, and to my daughter's dance performances under stage lighting. It performs beautifully.
    A friend of mine has a Canon G10 which is also a great choice.
    You are fortunate that there is so much more available now.
     
  43. You could always get a Leica M9...
    Sorry - back to reality. Sony is going to announce its new evils next week, and all rumors seem to indicate that they will be bringing out a 24mm equ. with them. If you can use a couple of Voigtlander primes, you'll be set to go. They'll have a sensor equal in size to that in your Nikon.
    If you are shooting mostly macros and landscapes, then high iso performance shouldn't be a big deal, and you should have more than enough time to get things in focus. An evil is really tempting for me as well, as I don't like to lug more around than necessary - anything more than can fit in my pockets often feels like too much to me for some reason.
     
  44. Jeff, it's all a matter of perspective. What you really need is a nice medium format kit like the Mamiya Super 23. Hump this gear, and the much larger tripod, around for a few months. You'll think a DSLR is a feather.
    00WPpH-242435684.jpg
     
  45. Jeff,
    Outdoor Photographer from October 2009 has a column written by Dewitt Jones. The piece is entitled "Hiking with All My Toys". He's got accompanying photos taken with his DSLR, a Pentax Optio W60 and an iPhone.
    He reflects on the weight of his gear and the increasing capabilities of the options. If I recall correctly he's not ready to give up his DSLR, but does not rule out a day in the future when a DSLR is no necessary for what he does.
    I don't think he comments on any of the options people are suggesting here. Just know that you'r enot alone in asking this question.
    Here's a link to the article if you want to read it.
    http://www.outdoorphotographer.com/columns/basic-jones/hiking-with-all-my-toys.html
    DS Meador
     
  46. Two options for you would be a D5000 and a Canon G10. The D5000 can do almost anything your D300 can when it comes to landscapes/scenic with a lot less bulk. Forget zooms and put a 20 or 24mm prime on the thing and be happy. My G10 always amazes me when it comes to image quality in good light. ISO 80 stopped down a bit and the thing is impressive. The micro 4/3 cameras are nice but they're expensive alternatives to either of my suggestions and for me the only thing they do better than the G10 is shoot cleaner at high ISO.
     
  47. I've owned the GF1 for about three months, and am now in the process of selling my wonderful Canon setup. My Canon gear is great. It's fast, it has more megapixels, its sensor is bigger, it handles high ISO better. The bottom line though is that the GF1 is 100x more fun to use! I enjoy photography because it's fun, not because of resolution, and the GF1 is a blast. I'm hoping to be able to afford the 45mm Panasonic and the 14mm pancake when it comes out this summer.
    00WPt6-242485784.jpg
     
  48. I went through this myself 20 years ago; sold my T90, bag full of lenses, flashes and accessories, and bought me one of them 'bridge' cameras. Within a few months I'd decided it was a bridge to HELL. Bought another SLR, and became much more moderate in my gear demands.
    I went through the same thing recently when I realized how heavy my new lenses were, and how often I left the house without the 70-200 2.8L. Sold that one, no regrets; no way will I sell the 24-70 though.
    Nowadays when I want to go light I have several options.
    • One of two folders
    • Stylus Epic, Yashica T4, Canon Powershot, or Freedom Zoom Explorer
    • Minolta XD-11 and two or three lenses (very small, high quality)
    • EOS or FD body with ONE midrange zoom
    There are times when I am confronted with a scene and find myself wishing I'd brought other gear; tough. Part of my learning experience is learning to cope with what I have with me at the time, and not worry about 'what could have been'. That way lies madness. I am however tempted by the G11, as well as the Fujifilm S200EXR.
     
  49. This is why I preferred buying a Canon Rebel XSI dSLR rather than the 40d/50d. I was quite willing to spend more money, but I prefer the smaller/lighter camera and lenses. The quality of shots I get with my XSI + 18-55mm IS + 55-250mm IS exceeded my expectations. If I want to schlep around a lot of weight, I'll pull out my 4x5" film field camera for 100+ megapixel scans :)
     
  50. My "walking around" bag has a Nikon D3 and a D3x with five lenses, a light meter, filters, extra batteries, memory cards and a note book computer.
    I'm pushing 70.
    Kids these days - Jeez!
     
  51. I know how you feel. These days it is either a Mamiya 6 or a Leica M6 that leaves the house with me. Both cameras are light and easy to carry with very sharp lenses but they are film cameras. The big heavy electronic slr stays home.
     
  52. When I want to travel light i use a belt. Biking for a week with it, containing 3 lenses (say a Sigma 17-70, Nikon 70-300 and an otherlens, It is always a difficult choice from 10 lenses),a monopod, filters (all 77mm), batteries and loader, camera D90 and some other needed stuff. What doesnot fit with the belt i cannot take, because all others things (like clothes) are in the bags attached to the bike.In the this way i (55 years) am still able to climb mountains, and ride (and fotograph) some 60 miles a day. So you should make choises when you cannot (or want not) take everything, The big mistake is to take all your stuff, to be ready for every possibility, and conclude that you did not use a lot of the stuff you have been carrying. But i am not feeling bad for the opportunities i misted, that is life, i just look for the next one.
     
  53. 'Kids these days - Jeez", says it all. Goodonya Greg!
     
  54. I have gone through spells of not wanting to lug the DSLR (and before that the SLR) around. I have gone through a series of P&S cameras over the years... got started when my photo unit was encouraged to keep a small camera pocketed so we could hold it up over the gaggle of crowd to get "the shot" when it wasn't possible to get in with the "real" cameras.
    My current pocket camera is a little Canon SD870 with IS, but I would recommend a little better quality for most... the image quality - sensor noise especially - out of these tiny cameras is a drawback. Some kind of image is better than no image at all!
     
  55. Greg Peterson your my hero! Compared to you, I'm only a pup at 55 and in good shape (I'm an RN and put on about 100 miles a day at a dead run) and still have serious doubts about lugging a big honkin setup around.
    In my forties I had a F100, 5 lenses, tripod, and all the other goodies I thought I couldn't live without in a big backpack and go for mile and not think about it. Even a scaling down with the equipment I have seems like too much stuff. I am going to try the free 7 day trial with the Ricoh and then go from there. I will be sure to report back to everyone.
    I have been a regular visitor to this forum (daily RSS feed) and there are lots of folks that responded that I have the utmost respect for. Thank you all for your comments.
    Any others?
     
  56. With a BIG film slr you get more film area per pound.
    The Graflex 5x7 slr here weights 10 Lbs.
    ie you get 3.5 square inches of film per pound.
    A 35mm slr is about say 1x1.5 thus 1.5 square inches; it would have to weight 7 oz; maybe possible with a P&S stylus.
    In the pure film era my Rolleicord IV was used alot; a lighet weight rig than my E3 flex.
     
  57. Greg Peterson your my hero! Compared to you, I'm only a pup at 55 and in good shape (I'm an RN and put on about 100 miles a day at a dead run) and still have serious doubts about lugging a big honkin setup around.
    In my forties I had a F100, 5 lenses, tripod, and all the other goodies I thought I couldn't live without in a big backpack and go for mile and not think about it. Even a scaling down with the equipment I have seems like too much stuff. I am going to try the free 7 day trial with the Ricoh and then go from there. I will be sure to report back to everyone.
    I have been a regular visitor to this forum (daily RSS feed) and there are lots of folks that responded that I have the utmost respect for. Thank you all for your comments.
    Any others?
    00WQ2F-242579584.jpg
     
  58. You would not want to give up Image Quality to something with less IQ, that's the price we pay to use good gear.​
    do i assume correctly then that you are shooting 8x10 field cameras?
     
  59. I too have a D300.
    1. Yes, I also get tired of schlepping it around sometimes. Then I just grab my Leica C-Lux2 (see below).
    2. I too long for an APS-C compact. But I stick to the small-sensor Leica until they come up with something absolutely irresistible.
    Do not sell your D300. It is a versatile camera with top IQ. Put a 35/1.8 DX on it, you could carry that combo for a whole day.
    00WQ3A-242597684.jpg
     
  60. (double post)
     
  61. Hi Jeff,
    If cost was not a factor, and I could only have one camera, it would be the Rolls Royce M9... perfect for what I do (landscapes, artistic work, and maybe a little street). Now, as one of your responants put it, back to reality! (Reality so sucks sometimes!) :eek:)
    I've been using a m4/3's G1 for the last several months, and I am so impressed with it. If you have to have high ISOs, it's not going to cut it for you. If you have to have high-burst action capability, it's probably not going to suit you. If you have to have poster-size prints, it probably won't cut it for you either. But, if you're like the majority of users out there, it will do you just fine, and you can still find new G1s in the $600 range. They will also take a boatload of lenses with adaptors. And, it's two pounds lighter than a straw hat... easy to haul around all day.
    To go one step further... if it has to be easily pocketable, go with the GF1 and the 1.7 pancake. Also get a zoom and stick it in your fanny pack. You just don't get a much better combo than that! You will be amazed at the quality! Slide on over to the four-thirds forum and ask some questions. You'll get an earfull! I know a few professionals (actually selling prints and making money) using their G1s! Remember, that ASP-C sensor is just not that much bigger than the 4/3s.
    I wouldn't at all mind having a D700 for my indoor (and close outdoor) work. But on the go, it will be the Lumix every time! Good luck!
     
  62. Hi Jeff,
    If cost was not a factor, and I could only have one camera, it would be the Rolls Royce M9... perfect for what I do (landscapes, artistic work, and maybe a little street). Now, as one of your responants put it, back to reality! (Reality so sucks sometimes!) :eek:)
    I've been using a m4/3's G1 for the last several months, and I am so impressed with it. If you have to have high ISOs, it's not going to cut it for you. If you have to have high-burst action capability, it's probably not going to suit you. If you have to have poster-size prints, it probably won't cut it for you either. But, if you're like the majority of users out there, it will do you just fine, and you can still find new G1s in the $600 range. They will also take a boatload of lenses with adaptors. And, it's two pounds lighter than a straw hat... easy to haul around all day.
    To go one step further... if it has to be easily pocketable, go with the GF1 and the 1.7 pancake. Also get a zoom and stick it in your fanny pack. You just don't get a much better combo than that! You will be amazed at the quality! Slide on over to the four-thirds forum and ask some questions. You'll get an earfull! I know a few professionals (actually selling prints and making money) using their G1s! Remember, that ASP-C sensor is just not that much bigger than the 4/3s.
    I wouldn't at all mind having a D700 for my indoor (and close outdoor) work. But on the go, it will be the Lumix every time! Good luck!
     
  63. I am in a similar situation; however can agree with you.
    Am still in the slide film world yet if somebody came up to me and said here's
    CAN$2500.00 for your F100, your remaining rolls of film, your three lenses and the
    D90 would I take it? More than likely, yes.
    Am taking fewer and fewer photographs and enjoying them less and less.
    My hey-day was back then, not now. And suspect as I get older and
    physically weaker, will need the realm of what is now, less and less.
    A small non-digital point and shoot would probably be nice;
    however is that all there is?
     
  64. As with many others I am in a similar position and until recently my solution has been a Film camera with a single focal length lens Nikon FM2 with 24mm lens
    I have been playing around and keeping tabs on the Micro 4/3rds. As yet they dont have a fast wide prime in their focal length of 11 or 12, this would be a deal breaker for me.
    What I noticed is that the Panasonic lenses focus significantly faster than the Olympus lenses on either Olympus or Panasonic bodies. I did not particularly get along with the Olympus bodies and will definitely go down the route of the GF-1 Whilst i really like the folding Olympus zoom lens for its compactness I found it to be terribly disappointing when compared to the much larger Panasonic zoom lens.
    It would be easy to sink a small fortune into the 4/3rds systems particularly as they launch new lenses.
    I would not sell my full frame gear for this but use it extensively as a travel option where it will find a very useful niche and occupy about 60% of my photography.
    Cheers G
     
  65. Look at the D90..its a nice weight and on a par with D300 image quality. The 70-300 vr nikon is a wonderful lens..add a 18-70 and you are all set.
     
  66. I'm another vote for a m43. I've used a canon 5d and multiple l lenses, but they're so heavy.
    Now I've got a panasonic gh1 and since I've had it, the canon stuff sits in a closet.
    I'm just finishing up a quick trip to Montreal and Quebec city. It's been rainy, so I've just used the gh1 and the 20 mm 1.7 pancake (equvalent of a 40mm on 35mm film slrs.)
    The combination was little bigger than a gf1 with the addon viewfinder and incredibly light. Small enough to carry under the raincoat. It's a great combination. With just the prime lens, no messing with switching lenses or zooming, except zooming with my feet.
    Sort of reminds me of my days with an AE-1 and 50mmf1.8 lens.
     
  67. Jeff, I throw a Canon G11 into my handbag when I am not using the D300. It's very convenient for quick shots, yet it captures both RAW and JPG, and not grainy up to ISO 800.
     
  68. Just saw a news item on a blog that Ricoh just came out with a telephoto for their GXR body. So I went to their websitehttp://www.ricoh.com/r_dc/gxr/features.html and I was impressed.​
    The GXR is expensive. Furthermore, I don't like the idea that you will be buying the lens and the sensor together. Thus when some day the sensor technology improves, you cannot use the lens but have to buy the lens/sensor combo again. Rumor has it that the ultimate goal of the GXR body is to separate the sensor from the lens. However this won't happen for a while.
    I too have a m4/3 camera. I have a GH1, which also gives superb HD video. I thus no longer own a camcorder. You have to actually pick up one of these with a pancake prime lens to appreciate how small they are. With a $50 adapter, you can mount all the Nikon lenses. These m4/3 camera has a 2x crop factor. A 100-300mm zoom lens is scheduled to arrive by the end of the year. With it, you will have a 200-600mm compact lens on a very small body.
     
  69. I had the same issue, exacerbated by being an old guy and breaking an elbow last fall - lugging a D300 was more than I could handle. I studied the issues for a while and bought a Oly E-P1 with the 14-42 collapsible. Just got back from two weeks in Turkey and the photos were great. My son was with us, and he's on a round-the-world backpacking trip. He ended up taking the E-P1 to replace his SONY DSLR gear.
    I drug the D300 + Tamron 10-24 around on an architectural tour today and gawd is it heavy. Want my E-P1 back and want the new 9-18 ultrawide.
    The D300 will go on eBay later this year.
    00WQJ3-242741584.jpg
     
  70. I have been doing the same thing but I would not sell off my gear I would add something smaller as many have pointed out. The question is what to add. I really like the look of the Panasonic 4/3 system but It seems to make more sense to ad a more consumer body. I don't think the 4/3 is that much smaller then a consumer body, I could be wrong but from what I have seen if you ad a lens other then the pancake and a view finder its getting pretty close. I was playing around with a D40 ( I believe ) and I was amazed at how small it was compared to my 5d2. But something very cool about the 4/3 systems. it looks like a fun camera.
    I never really looked at the Ricoh, I may have to as it seems pretty impressive.
    I am leaning toward something like the Panasonic LX3 since I want HD video and a wide lens and this seems to be the optimal high end p/s but its been out a few years so I have been just waiting.
    What I do for now when I want to go light is take some or just 1 small prime in a small bag like an urban disguise 20 and it ends up being more fun but I need to get something smaller as well, having a big heavy camera when your shooting just for fun takes the fun out. But I think you would regret selling it off so take your time with your decision.
     
  71. gosh I still lug a Bronica SQ with 3 lenses and a few backs , not to mention film , filters etc
    I even carry this at times on my pushbike .
    have to admit it is a bloody heavy thing but then a mate of mine does it with an 8 x10 view camera
    so I guess I don't really have much to wine about .
    Hey I got good arms from this at least
     
  72. If you choose to go with a micro four thirds, you may want to check out the Samsung NX-10. I just played with one last week at the Seoul Photo and Imaging Show 2010. I actually preferred the ergonomics and menu layout to the other micro cameras. I think it is pretty new, and they still have as yet unreleased new lenses for it. Possibly worth a look. Good luck in your hunt.
     
  73. I have 2 Panasonic G1s, one is modified for IR, a 45-200mm, and a 7-14mm lens that will all fit into a small camera bag easily fitting under airline seats for carry on plus light weight for hiking. The telephoto is not too sharp on the long end but the kit and the wide angle are very good at their optimum f-stop. The 7-14 does not have the capability to use filters. These cameras shoot and focus a little slower so they are not very good for sports and they are noisy at higher ASAs but I use almost everything at 100.
    If you use ND filters for shooting waterfalls the camera is excellent. With the electronic viewfinder, it looks just like a normal exposure and you can easily compose images without having to add and remove the filters, you just leave them on.
    To use the camera in macro, I just screw on a Nikon macro filter. With the screw on filter, the images are very sharp with both the kit and the telephoto lens.
    I had shot 4x5 for years but now I would never go back. I enjoy taking pictures now just because it is so easy and fun without having to lug huge amounts of cameras and plates around. (I'm getting old obviously)
    I try to post a picture on most days if you would like to see examples from January 2009 onwards. www.jimcox.ca
     
  74. If your main thing is landscapes and macros, a D300 with 12-24mm and a 105mm micro is very light and all you need. Switch to a carbon-fiber tripod if you're not already using one. I think about lightening the load quite a bit, but I'm still too into nature photography to give up the dslr.
    I love shooting with my D300s -- the way it feels, the controls, the speed of AF and CF-card-writing -- and I shoot almost everything from a tripod. My landscapes often require lots of depth of field which necessitates a slow shutter speed. My tripod-mounted macro shots are always carefully framed, often require slow shutter speeds and remote release, and are sometimes focus-stacked. I often use a 300mm w/ 1.7X, and putting it on a tripod means I can keep the ISO down and use slower shutter speeds, frame my shots more carefully, and carry it around on my shoulder.
    Now if I found a 4/3 forum full of the kinds of photos I take, I'd probably dump the dslr. But that day hasn't come. I did recently buy a smaller camera backpack so I can more easily go out with just part of the load. In the end it will come down to your own commitment to your art. Or at least, thinking about it that way might make you feel better about sucking it up and hauling the load.
     
  75. For what it is worth, the current issue of "Digital Photo" magazine...May/June issure, has an article called SLR vs. EVF. It may be worth a look, or if considering a 4/3 camera, to purchase a copy. Interesting, but don't expect a side by side comaprision other than physical sizes.
     

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