Hiking camera gear choices.

Started 11 months ago | Discussions thread
tcdc12321 Regular Member • Posts: 151
Re: Controversial?
3

NCV wrote:

Tom Caldwell wrote:

cba_melbourne wrote:

What about two GM5 cameras with your existing lenses? The EM5 is 425g. The GM5 is 212g. Two GM5 bodies are together 424g. Much less lens swapping, and 212g less weight in your hand. Same overall weight like your present outfit, no need to buy new lenses, spare redundancy if one camera fails.

The GM5 is expensive and hard to get though. But there are other modern cameras lighter and smaller than the EM5. I would consider two small bodies, rather than a superzoom for hiking. Cost may be a wash between the two solutions.

When someone is flogging their own particular favourite camera gear without any doubt in their mind that it suits them best there is not much use trying to convert them to the sensible and very effective GM5

There is a lot of difference between “telling” and “listening”.

This is coming from the epicentre of “knowing that the GM5 suits me best” country.

Nor have I any need to sow controversy and reap the wind.

A moderately intelligent adult should also be able to understand the fact that cross brand/ format comparisons are not resolved with empirical arithmetic of the type "your lens is really 5.6, not 2.8". The question is far more complex.

I'm not interested in weighing in on all of the bickering in this thread, but I want to address this point. Equivalence doesn't matter once bit if you're only working with one sensor size, be that M43 or FF or whatever else. But when making comparisons across sensor sizes, which your thread is explicitly doing, equivalence becomes important. Sure, equivalence along cannot answer the question of which system to go for, but it would be ignorant to disregard it...after all, an iPhone 11's wide angle lens has an aperture of f/1.8, but computation tricks aside, nobody is claiming that you can get great bokeh or low-light shots with an iPhone camera. That's why equivalence matters.

The advantage of M43, broadly speaking, is that if you don't need fast equivalent apertures, you can get lighter/smaller gear. This is very relevant for hiking, because most travel/landscape photos require deep depth-of-field.

To realize the "advantages" of FF strictly in terms of sensor size, for the most part you need to accept having less depth-of-field in your shoots by shooting at a faster equivalent aperture, or you need a lot of light or a tripod to get less noisy photos by shooting with a lower equivalent ISO at the expense of a slower shutter speed. Do these advantages matter to you? If so, consider FF, if not, M43 might be a better choice for you.

For hiking, you're probably going to be mostly shooting at an f/8 (or maybe f/5.6 or f/11) equivalent aperture, so the shallow depth-of-field advantages don't make a whole lot of difference. Getting less noisy photos is nice, but 1) in good light, the noise at base ISO for M43 is good enough for me (this is my personal opinion, some disagree), and 2) in low light, I don't always want to be carrying around a tripod, which is frequently necessary to realize the advantage of less noisy photos. I'm happy to add some examples here if that would be helpful for understanding this better.

Moving beyond sensor size, the big advantage of FF for hiking/landscape is the ability to take higher resolution photos without using pixel-shift, while the big advantage of M43 is the incredible stabilization, which means you might not even have to bring a tripod with you.

Now that we've covered the big advantages and disadvantages of M43 and FF for hiking, it's up to each individual to weight those and make the right decision for themselves about which format is right for them. The point here is simply that equivalence is very helpful in understanding the tradeoffs between systems.

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