G Davidson

G Davidson

Lives in Japan Kashiwa, Japan
Works as a Teacher
Joined on Jan 14, 2007
About me:

Future plan- to make books with my photos fused with poetry. At the moment, they are in online galleries and photo-blogs, like-

http://daylifepics.blogspot.com/
http://momentsofinfinity.blogspot.com/

Equipment-

Nikon D300,
Nikon D5100
Nikon D3100
Panasonic LX5
Canon G9

SB-800 Flash
Velbon QHD-41 Monopod

Lenses-

Note- I try to stick to 'bright' lenses, so as to control the depth of field and to have a brighter image in the viewfinder, though for traveling and ultra-wide angles I compromise on this.

Nikon 24mm f/2.8D.......................(street photography, walk-around)
Nikon 28mm f/2.8D.......................(events, walk-around)
Nikon 35mm f/1.8 D.....................(my other walk-around)
Nikon 50mm f/1.4D.......................(low light and portraits)
Nikon 17-55mm f/2.8 DX................(events, weddings)
Nikon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 VR..........(for traveling light)
Nikon 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6 VR........(travel)
Nikon 35-70mm f/2.8D...................(my DX portrait zoom)
Nikon 70-300mm f/4-5.6 VRII.........(nature, travel, candids)
Nikon 80-200mm f/2.8 ED AF..........(candids, nature)

Tokina 12-24mm f/4 ATX Pro-DX.......(wide landscapes, events)
Sigma 50mm f/1.4 HSM....................(portraits, details, bokeh, low-light)
Tamron 90mm SP AF f/2.8 Di...........(macro with amazing, beautiful bokeh)

I recently sold on my Nikon 24-50mm AF, Nikon 70-300mm ED AF and Tokina 28-70mm AT-X AF SV, as they are not so useful on DX and their ranges are covered better by the lenses above.

Most Wanted Lenses-

70-200mm VR
85mm f/1.4D
17-55mm f/2.8 AF-S DX Nikon/ another equivalent zoom for DX, like the Tamron 17-50mm version

Comments

Total: 240, showing: 61 – 80
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On Confessions of a camera snob post (90 comments in total)

A wonderful article. For me, what I enjoy most about shooting with a mobile camera (for me an iPhone 4S), is the mix of very good image quality, instant feedback on a gorgeous screen and perhaps most of all, the set of limitations, whether it be the prime lens or shooting black and white with an app. You are almost forced to be creative as you compose your photos, having no great lens features to fall back on. Then, the almost infinite variety of post-processing at your fingertips gives more creative possibilities. One testament to all of this is that I can clearly remember taking all my mobile photos, whilst on system cameras, I end up taking so many of the same scene there's no one 'photo' to remember.

It makes a great companion to a more capable camera, but it is true that shooting with one is a unique experience. The slowness and beautiful 'viewfinder' give it some of the advantages of a view camera, whilst the instant posting (and feedback) bring something of a Polaroid to the experience. It has moved from being an 'emergency back-up camera' to something much more for me.

Direct link | Posted on Mar 18, 2013 at 01:52 UTC as 20th comment
On Dblcam app captures both sides of the story post (17 comments in total)

Having used it more, there is just one glaring omission- it should use the orientation sensor to make photos the right way up. Having an upside down landscape, (as often happens when you take photos horizontally) isn't much fun.

Direct link | Posted on Mar 14, 2013 at 09:52 UTC as 10th comment
On Dblcam app captures both sides of the story post (17 comments in total)

Hmmm interesting concept.

Direct link | Posted on Mar 12, 2013 at 14:38 UTC as 13th comment

Very nice. I've always wondered why Nikon don't offer a power pack or battery cartridges for their flashes, which leaves you fiddling around getting your batteries in the right way around. Though a bit heavy, a battery pack sounds like the way to go.

Direct link | Posted on Mar 8, 2013 at 23:04 UTC as 15th comment
In reply to:

Mike Cialowicz: Finally! Shame about the price, but at least everything else looks great!

Considering they recommend TCs, the detail you can capture with this should be astounding.

Direct link | Posted on Mar 8, 2013 at 22:17 UTC
In reply to:

ThomasH_always: Well, yea, "shame about the price." I offer $1400. Want more? Nope, not from me, you keep the lens. I am endlessly patient. I will rather take my old 80-200 F/2.8 with extender.

My main problem is birds in flight. I'd like something with much faster AF and also the VR for this. The 5x zoom is attractive, too- with the 2x TC my 80-200 is always long. It's too bad this costs so much for the time being, but at least the IQ should be astounding.

Direct link | Posted on Mar 8, 2013 at 22:16 UTC
In reply to:

falconeyes: I hoped the "editor's opinion" was based on first hand experience but it was not: based on specs only :(

The specs look ok, even for the price. BUT ... the decisive question will be center resolution at the long end, esp. when paired with a TC or used on a D7100. Why did Nikon show 800px web samples for this lens when, at the same time, they showed full size 24MP samples for the new D7100 with a 500/4G? Makes me suspicious ...

The MTF figures offered by Nikon are not detailed enough to judge this. It is certainly an impressive improvement over the older version but that wasn't very useful at the long end anymore.

So, we need a real lens test and full size sample images.

I think this is all because there is so much interest in this lens from Nikon users. The 70-300VR is okay, but soft at the longer end and not offering superlative reach. The original is still on sale after so many years, the only 'affordable' Nikkor reaching up to 400mm. It's interesting (to me) to see all the advances that come with the intervening years... VR2, AF-S, much better optics. It's true we'll only know for sure when more samples come in, but after seeing the design success of the 70-200mm f/4, I am pretty confident the IQ will be high.

It's true though that there isn't much opinion here, but it's early days yet. The opinion is more a commentary on how technologies have evolved, a kind of reflection on the state of digital imaging that there generally isn't time for in the usual news articles.

Direct link | Posted on Mar 7, 2013 at 04:01 UTC
In reply to:

ThomasH_always: Well, yea, "shame about the price." I offer $1400. Want more? Nope, not from me, you keep the lens. I am endlessly patient. I will rather take my old 80-200 F/2.8 with extender.

That's what I'm using, with beautiful results. The VR and fast AF are attractive, but not this price.

Direct link | Posted on Mar 5, 2013 at 14:10 UTC

Attractive lens maybe, but way too expensive for that slow aperture. It seems to be relying on-

A) The increased reach that newer crop cameras/ high MP sensors cropped offer, to give a really long reach (plus it's compatibility with tele-convertors) and

B) The better performance at high ISOs on today's sensors, along with the better VR. Presumably, this will only improve, making brighter lenses less important for capture speed.

... yet other lenses will share these benefits, including brighter ones presumably having better bokeh and faster AF due to letting in more light. It seems to me yet another opening for third parties like Sigma to offer similar ranges at a radically better price-point with only slightly worse optics, though that 'slightly worse' factor may push many to the Nikon.

Direct link | Posted on Mar 5, 2013 at 14:09 UTC as 27th comment
In reply to:

Retzius: Thanks Nikon. Some DX primes would be nice though...

Ooh I think an affordable, bright 16mm, 18mm, 24mm would be great news. The newer FX wide primes are very expensive, DX ones could probably be a lot more affordable, as long as the mount can make use of them (some say small, wide primes are hard to make for DX).

Direct link | Posted on Feb 21, 2013 at 12:09 UTC
In reply to:

G Davidson: Wow finally a real update to my D300! I have waited a long time or this and the specifications sound excellent. I can only hope it is indeed a new sensor, improving on the (already good?) one in the D5100. Very happy to hear this news. Semi-pro DX is here to stay.

I have to admit, looking at it more carefully, it is indeed not a true successor. I was a little taken in by the claims of D300 similarities in the press releases. Yet issues of build and buffer depth come up and the fps fall short. However, my main concern with other 'affordable' Nikons like the D600/D7000 are more about their AF abilities. If this has a next-generation sensor in terms of output and the AF is better than the D300, it may well be enough of an upgrade for me... As someone happy with the 6-7fps and the AF coverage.

It may be a good way to stay in the DX game and then (maybe) get into FX in another generation.

Direct link | Posted on Feb 21, 2013 at 12:05 UTC
On Just Posted: Nikon D7100 Hands-On Preview article (311 comments in total)
In reply to:

Parry Johnson: Hmmm... no D400? Perhaps it's the "unlucky #4" Japanese namesake, but I think this is a case where Nikon wants to sell a bunch of prosumer bodies before coming out with the "real" flagship DX camera. In the meantime, my D300/S just took another $50 to $100 dive in the used market.

From everything Nikon are saying, they are leaving open the possibility of a D400. I suppose their final decision may rest on how well FX sells, but of course some will have a foot in both camps.

I take their assessment of this as middle-class DX as being serious and expect a D400 to come. Only the D4/ D300S are currently really suited for sports... But I suppose a D800S could equally be the fix.

Direct link | Posted on Feb 21, 2013 at 11:37 UTC
On Nikon D7100 Hands-on Preview preview (493 comments in total)
In reply to:

Richard Murdey: "The critical thing here is that despite the fact that the D7100 is Nikon's third DX-format 24MP DSLR, its sensor is new, and unique in Nikon's stable."

Yet you don't explain why this is "critical", indeed any of its benefits, only that the LP filter is omitted. But that's nothing to do with the sensor, any sensor can be used with or without a LP filter.

So are you just spinning back the Nikon press release or is there actually anything new here at the sensor level?

The press release claims it's a new sensor in itself, not just that the AA filter's omitted. Sony just announced a next generation 20mp sensor, so my hope is it's a derivation of that, though it's true, they may just be referring to the removed AA filter. If not, maybe a D400 with D800-class AF, much larger buffer and such a sensor is still to come?

Direct link | Posted on Feb 21, 2013 at 11:15 UTC
On Nikon D7100 Hands-on Preview preview (493 comments in total)
In reply to:

aarif: Is this the same sensor made by Sony used in the A77? I hope not but if true why they didn't use the newer generation 20mp Sensor from Sony unless that is going to be used for the actual D300s replacement maybe

If the new 20mp sensor is in fact 1 stop better, it's a shame they couldn't use it here. But they do claim it's a 'new' sensor, so maybe it's a higher resolution version of the Sony 20mp one, or at least better than the D5200's?

Direct link | Posted on Feb 21, 2013 at 11:02 UTC

Wow finally a real update to my D300! I have waited a long time or this and the specifications sound excellent. I can only hope it is indeed a new sensor, improving on the (already good?) one in the D5100. Very happy to hear this news. Semi-pro DX is here to stay.

Direct link | Posted on Feb 21, 2013 at 05:50 UTC as 70th comment | 5 replies
In reply to:

G Davidson: Very technical, but hope they soon allow 30fps. Seeing the difference, motion's a lot smoother and people can always limit it to 24/25fps if they want. Sounds like processing this amount of data is difficult, so it may be a while before they offer a 'true' 8k model. Which makes me wonder- isn't high resolution film still a better archival format? Sorry to be inane, but when something is touted as the best thing since sliced bread, sometimes it's good to point out it's limitations.

Excellent point, in this sense for most people digital is safer, especially if you can do multiple back-ups. I do wonder for feature film makers, though, if formats like this will stand the test of time as well as conventional film, especially the 70mm variety. Digital is often presented as state of the art and as if it is the only available technology. Film at it's best still has a lot of advantages and I'm not sure I like the glossy, plasticy look of digital for conveying atmosphere, though of course it can have filters applied a la Instagram.

It's a little sad for me that despite all the fuss, digital is still a work in progress, without the maturity film has achieved through years of evolution. An 8k scan of an old 70mm film would offer so much more detail and subtlty than this, but given the choice of convenience, who would bother?

Direct link | Posted on Feb 12, 2013 at 02:45 UTC

Very technical, but hope they soon allow 30fps. Seeing the difference, motion's a lot smoother and people can always limit it to 24/25fps if they want. Sounds like processing this amount of data is difficult, so it may be a while before they offer a 'true' 8k model. Which makes me wonder- isn't high resolution film still a better archival format? Sorry to be inane, but when something is touted as the best thing since sliced bread, sometimes it's good to point out it's limitations.

Direct link | Posted on Feb 12, 2013 at 01:02 UTC as 11th comment | 5 replies
On Nikon D5200 added to our studio comparison database article (186 comments in total)
In reply to:

Anfy: A pity the camera has not a built-in motor for AF and AF-D lenses, it would have been the perfect choice for me.

I couldn't agree more. What is this obsession Canon and Nikon have with only making large DSLRs fully-featured? It's one reason why mirrorless is growing, people want small, well-featured cameras, not just oversized ones. Well, I know I do!

Direct link | Posted on Feb 10, 2013 at 12:45 UTC

Lighten up people! It's about the response (or lack of response) to a mobile phone taking photos, which can lead to a far more natural result. Posed photos may be technically good, but if they fail to capture the feeling of the moment, what's the point.

It's something like the observer effect in an experiment, when the observer changes what is observed. Mobiles simply have a lighter and less intimidating effect. Couple that with the near-ubiquity of DSLRs these days and you can see why pros are trying something different. And yes, the iPhone is a 'good camera', as I am sure other mobiles these days are. The softwear is a big part of this, no doubt about it, but wasn't how film got developed relevant, too?

Direct link | Posted on Feb 9, 2013 at 05:28 UTC as 39th comment | 2 replies
In reply to:

SLOtographer: I like the idea of EM5 5-axis IBIS and f1.2 (with the DOF of f2.4 on FF). That means you can slow the shutter, keep ISO down, and still get enough stuff in focus. Lots of creative possibilities!

I'm sorry but you wouldn't have a faster shutter speed, as you'd probaby be using a slower high ISO than you could (cleanly) get on a larger sensor. The advantage is size and especially having a less conspicuous camera. When you are travelling this is a big deal. Who actually travels with 85mm full-frame lenses?

Direct link | Posted on Feb 2, 2013 at 22:03 UTC
Total: 240, showing: 61 – 80
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