Your favourite travel cameras

Started Jul 31, 2019 | Questions
JEasley Regular Member • Posts: 138
Your favourite travel cameras

Hello all. I travel a lot, especially in these past few months. I’ve come to loath bringing my DSLRs around because they’re so conspicuous. I usually try to do street and landscape while I’m abroad.

Sooo... what suggestions do you have? What’s your favourite travel camera?

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yardcoyote Forum Pro • Posts: 13,468
Re: Your favourite travel cameras
5

My travel cameras are the same as my everyday cameras. I don't see "travel photography" as a genre, and my interests are the same wherever I am.

I do tend to leave my (medium sized) DSLRs at home unless I am going to a zoo ( since my tele zoom is in that system),  but otherwise it's a combination of one or two small mirrorless cameras, each with a prime lens on it. Which ones vary with the places I am going and how much I want to carry.

I would rather carry two cameras than change lenses in the field.

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Val Bueno
Val Bueno Senior Member • Posts: 2,243
RX100
9

Small enough to fit in my jeans pocket when I need my hands free, shoots raw, can go full manual, I can use filters on it using the Magfilter system and I understand it's strengths and limitations and know how to wring the best out of it.

As always, decide for yourself:

Jodoshu Tenjo Temple, Otaru, Japan

Otaru Canal, Otaru, Japan

Dead Trees, Mauna Kea, Hawaii Island, Hawaii, USA

Kids jumping into the Wailuku River, Hilo, Hawaii Island, Hawaii, USA

Street Photography, Sham Shui Po, Hong Kong, China

La Sagrada Familia, Barcelona, Cataluña, Spain

Pic du Jer, Lourdes, France

Nuremberg, Germany

Telford, England

Jerusalem, Israel

Aloha,

Val

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Jonsi
Jonsi Veteran Member • Posts: 6,091
Re: Your favourite travel cameras
9

My favorite travel camera is the same camera I use for everything else.  My DSLR.

Why sacrifice image quality when I visit other places ?!

Rexgig0
Rexgig0 Veteran Member • Posts: 7,022
Re: Your favourite travel cameras
2

If I am traveling to photograph birds, I take my Nikon D5 and D4s cameras, of course.

If I want to walk around an urban area, I might select a silver-and-black Nikon Df, as I have found it tends to help start friendly conversations.

Really, however, using a tiny pancake lens, such as my silvery-colored Nikkor 45/2.8P, on an SLR as large as a D5, significantly lowers its profile. I have often walked about, in nearby Houston, with this lens on my D5, and nobody seems uncomfortable. I often did the same thing, previously, with a Canon EF 40mm STM, on an original 5D.

Another way to lower any camera’s profile is to use a long strap, worn so that the strap passes over one shoulder, so that the camera hangs below the opposite shoulder. For me, at least, this is far more comfortable; I hate the neck-aches/backaches I get, with a camera hanging directly in front of me.

I wore a Nikon D700, with a Nikkor 24-70/2.8G ED lens affixed, on a Peak Design Slide strap, diagonally, as described above, during a two-week road trip, all day, each day, in comfort, without feeling particularly conspicuous. Of course, I was photographing general scenery, and my nephew. Pointing a 24-70/2.8G lens directly at people will be noticed, by them.

Relatively recently, I have added the Leica M system, starting with an M10 and a 50mm f/1.4 lens. Adding a Zeiss 35mm ZM lens made this a more all-around, travel-oriented combination. M-system lenses are generally smaller than lens made for other ILC systems, which, I believe, is the major benefit when one wishes to be inconspicuous.

I see no reason to add a “mirror-less” system, for travel, or any other reason. Most of the lenses offer no significant size advantage, compared to SLR systems.

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By accident of availability, I learned to use Canon and Nikon DSLRs at the same time. I love specific lenses made by both Canon and Nikon, too much to quit either system. Dabbling with Leica-M is fun, too. I am, certainly, not an expert.

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Lee Jay Forum Pro • Posts: 56,673
Re: Your favourite travel cameras
1

JEasley wrote:

What’s your favourite travel camera?

My SLR and 4-5 lens kit.

Yes, I know, that's not what you wanted to hear.  But it's the truth.  I don't like being without focal length range, and that includes 180 degree fisheye.

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Lee Jay

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Wingsfan
Wingsfan Contributing Member • Posts: 507
Re: Your favourite travel cameras
3

Recently, it's been a Lumix ZS100 or RX100m6. Traveling with kids means the focus of our travel isn't photography, so these cameras fit the bill nicely for me.

These enthusiast cameras can fit into a pocket, which means I can take them any time we go somewhere, and i don't have to leave them in the safe at the hotel, nor do I worry about someone noticing my gear hanging around my neck or in a camera bag.

I still try to bring my m43 gear whenever I can, but sometimes we just can't spare the room.

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nevada5
nevada5 Forum Pro • Posts: 14,984
LX100 n/t
5
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Barry Twycross Veteran Member • Posts: 4,006
Re: Your favourite travel cameras
1

Not just for travel, but photography in general. I like smaller and lighter.

I used to use high end compact compacts, my favorite was the Panasonic LF1.

They don't make them like that anymore, and the current high end compacts are too big for my liking, so I jumped onto the smallest micro 4/3rds camera you can buy, which is the (much maligned) GX-850. It's not much bigger than the high end compacts, and I'm really enjoying using a system camera again. It's IQ is significantly better than the LF1.

Most of the time I use the Panasonic 12-32 lens with that, which is the smallest zoom you can get, and a real surprise as to how good it is. Along with the 35-100/4-5.6, it makes a good travel kit. But then I added a 20/1.7 (pancake) and other lenses.

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OP JEasley Regular Member • Posts: 138
Re: Your favourite travel cameras
2

Jonsi wrote:

My favorite travel camera is the same camera I use for everything else. My DSLR.

Why sacrifice image quality when I visit other places ?!

The bulkiness for one. Even with a pancake lens on a 6DII is still too big. I’m looking for something that can either fit in my pocket or a crossbody bag.

Weegee
Weegee Senior Member • Posts: 2,900
Olympus, of course!
2

Nothing beats this golden trio. Small camera and 3 excellent lenses all fit in a small Dome bag. I'll be going to the National Parks ( Zion,Brice,Moab,Grand Canyon ) with this trio in Oct.

Alas, my Nikon is starting to gather dust and my wife is getting tired of dusting it off! My last trip using this trio: https://cdelbert.zenfolio.com/p938901248

OP JEasley Regular Member • Posts: 138
Re: Your favourite travel cameras

Barry Twycross wrote:

Not just for travel, but photography in general. I like smaller and lighter.

I used to use high end compact compacts, my favorite was the Panasonic LF1.

They don't make them like that anymore, and the current high end compacts are too big for my liking, so I jumped onto the smallest micro 4/3rds camera you can buy, which is the (much maligned) GX-850. It's not much bigger than the high end compacts, and I'm really enjoying using a system camera again. It's IQ is significantly better than the LF1.

Most of the time I use the Panasonic 12-32 lens with that, which is the smallest zoom you can get, and a real surprise as to how good it is. Along with the 35-100/4-5.6, it makes a good travel kit. But then I added a 20/1.7 (pancake) and other lenses.

I’ll take a look into it. I’m not one to listen to reviews; hands on is the way to go. Thanks for the suggestion.

Mika Y.
Mika Y. Senior Member • Posts: 1,647
Re: Your favourite travel cameras

JEasley wrote:

Hello all. I travel a lot, especially in these past few months. I’ve come to loath bringing my DSLRs around because they’re so conspicuous. I usually try to do street and landscape while I’m abroad.

Sooo... what suggestions do you have? What’s your favourite travel camera?

I've migrated from the Canon's Powershot G3 to their x0D series and to 5D mk III. However, I don't have much interest in street photography,  thus discreetness has never been a major concern, so I think my preferences are not very useful for making recommendations applying for your needs.

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Smaug01
MOD Smaug01 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,254
My favorite so far has been the Canon G9X
1

Its lens was a bit soft though.

If I were to buy another one, I'd probably try a Ricoh GR III.

If it doesn't have to be truly pocket-sized, I'd go with Olympus E-PL9 and the pancake zoom lens.

Right now, I'm using my Pentax MX-1, which is kind of a brick, and has a 1/1.7" sensor, but its outstanding lens (eq. 28-112 f/1.8-2.4) makes up for the small sensor.

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Lee Jay Forum Pro • Posts: 56,673
Re: Your favourite travel cameras

JEasley wrote:

Jonsi wrote:

My favorite travel camera is the same camera I use for everything else. My DSLR.

Why sacrifice image quality when I visit other places ?!

The bulkiness for one. Even with a pancake lens on a 6DII is still too big. I’m looking for something that can either fit in my pocket or a crossbody bag.

I use a cross body bag to store an SLR + 4-5 lenses.

ThinkTank ChangeUp.

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Lee Jay

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Leonard Migliore
Leonard Migliore Forum Pro • Posts: 18,492
Depends on the travel
4

JEasley wrote:

Hello all. I travel a lot, especially in these past few months. I’ve come to loath bringing my DSLRs around because they’re so conspicuous. I usually try to do street and landscape while I’m abroad.

Sooo... what suggestions do you have? What’s your favourite travel camera?

If I'm traveling by car, I take my whole DSLR kit+tripods. Why not? I'm not carrying it and it works quite well.

If I'm traveling by air, I usually take an RX100 because it's very small and takes decent pictures.

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Leonard Migliore

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Lee Jay Forum Pro • Posts: 56,673
Re: Olympus, of course!

Weegee wrote:

Nothing beats this golden trio. Small camera and 3 excellent lenses all fit in a small Dome bag. I'll be going to the National Parks ( Zion,Brice,Moab,Grand Canyon ) with this trio in Oct.

I just got back from Moab, Canyon Lands, Zion and Grand Canyon and I used 180 degree horizontal fisheye through 400mm equivalent, and 400mm equivalent wasn't enough at Zion.

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Lee Jay

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Mike - Senior Member • Posts: 1,043
My favorite travel camera...a6300
1

Sony a6300.

I own and use Canon (2), Sony (3) and Nikon (1) of different flavors.

I traveled a lot my last year of work, for work (now retired). I was on travel almost every week, with three days home, every "other" week. So that means, I was "trapped" on the east coast every other weekend. The little Sony is small enough in size for easy carry, but large enough in capability to do the job at hand very well. Indoor, out door, evening, daytime.  Easy to adjust on the fly / quickly, don't need a large bag for storage. Two battery's was plenty for each two week stay.  Though I hardly ever needed the second battery.

I bought it just for this series of travel, and it performed admirably.  I was set on a more expensive than normal pocket camera.  I'm glad I went for this Sony.

Mike

OP JEasley Regular Member • Posts: 138
Re: Depends on the travel
1

Leonard Migliore wrote:

JEasley wrote:

Hello all. I travel a lot, especially in these past few months. I’ve come to loath bringing my DSLRs around because they’re so conspicuous. I usually try to do street and landscape while I’m abroad.

Sooo... what suggestions do you have? What’s your favourite travel camera?

If I'm traveling by car, I take my whole DSLR kit+tripods. Why not? I'm not carrying it and it works quite well.

If I'm traveling by air, I usually take an RX100 because it's very small and takes decent pictures.

I travel by air a lot. Internationally I don’t want to walk around with a huge honking dslr and a big lens to match. Someone else mentioned the RX100s as well. The Canon G-shots look good as well. My next trip isn’t for a few months so I’m doing all of the research I can on you guys’ suggestions. Thanks for the heads up on the RX100.

DenWil
DenWil Veteran Member • Posts: 4,353
Pentax 67 + Nikon D810
1

JEasley wrote:

Hello all. I travel a lot, especially in these past few months. I’ve come to loath bringing my DSLRs around because they’re so conspicuous. I usually try to do street and landscape while I’m abroad.

"DSLRs"..."they're"  ...plural?  How many are you carrying and yes of course you will be conspicuous with multiple rigs hanging from your neck.

Nobody is going to respond to a single 35mm DSLR  with a shorter lens- especially if you skip the grip. They are commonplace.

The shot matters, not my anonymity. I took my 67 into the bowels of Hoover Dam. If someone blinked I sure did not notice.

Disney Hall, Los Angeles California.  Pentax 67, 90mm

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dw

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