Ben Herrmann

Ben Herrmann

Lives in United States Wake County, NC, United States
Works as a US Marine Corps (Retired) and now fully retired
Joined on Jul 11, 2002
About me:

FULL NAME: Bernd Werner Herrmann.

BIRTHPLACE: Moosburg, Bavaria (Germany)

CURRENT HOME: We emigrated to the United States in the early 1950's and settled in the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area. My father was a WW II German Army (Wehrmacht) Officer and he elected for us to emigrate to the United States following the war. We subsequently became naturalized proud American citizens.

EMPLOYMENT STATUS: Retired US Marine Corps and now fully retired.

ASTROLOGICAL SIGN: Aquarius (Feb 13).

EDUCATION: (NC State University) - BS - Parks and Natural Resources Management - Summa Cum Laude (GPA 4.01).

SCENARIOS THAT TEND TO IRRITATE ME: Political correctness, violent radicals, socialists, and establishment politicians in general.

HOBBIES AND/OR PREFERRED ACTIVITIES: Avid physical fitness and weight training, digital photography, fine cuisine and wine, gardening, and rifle and pistol marksmanship (favorite pistols - Glock and H&K).

CAMERAS CURRENTLY IN MY COLLECTION (and yes, I do use them all from time to time - although some are now collector items):

CANON:
G12, SX50 HS, EOS-M, EOS-M2, EOS-M10, EOS M3

FUJI:
XF1, X10, X20, X30, X-S1, X-E1, X-E2, X-M1, X-A1, X-A3, and X-T1

NIKON:
P6000, P7700 and P330

OLYMPUS:
C-7070, C-8080, XZ-1, E-1, E-300, E-500, E-330, E-520, E-3, E-30, E-620, E-P3, E-P5, E-M5, E-PL5, E-PL7, and E-M 10 II.

PANASONIC LUMIX:
LX7, L1, L10, GF1, GX1, G5, GF6, and GH3

SAMSUNG:
EX2F, NX300, NX30 and NX500

Comments

Total: 61, showing: 1 – 20
« First‹ Previous1234Next ›Last »
In reply to:

Limbsjones: They should just join the m4/3 camp. Best system around!

I've thought about this for a long time. Why Nikon didn't join the Micro Four Thirds consortium years ago (other than for reasons of pride), is beyond me. And by doing so, that would not have had any detrimental effect to their DSLR products. But with their historical ingenuity in product design, Nikon could have contributed greatly to the M43 genre of cameras - both with camera bodies and with lenses. They could have done this rather than their Nikon 1 series. Ho, humnnn - just a thought here (actually, it was just a wish).

Link | Posted on Jul 12, 2017 at 22:04 UTC
On article Fujifilm X-A3 Review (209 comments in total)
In reply to:

Ben Herrmann: Bingo! Just what I discovered and wrote about after getting the X-A3. I'm a RAW shooter only and in the end, regardless of the issues I discovered (slow and difficulty AF in very low light situations, a 1st generation horrible touch screen, and the inability to view the LCD in any type of bright conditions - whether in sunny or bright cloudy scenarios) I was still very much impressed with the superb IQ I've gotten from mine.

I only hope (yet doubt) that Fuji can release FW updates to correct any of this as there is only so much a FW update can do.

The IQ and DR (well, at least in RAW as I never shoot in JPG) were superb - so this baby is stayin' in my vast collection of goodies.

But yes, when you want to compare (overall) against its various competitors, there's lots to choose from. My entry level Micro 43 cameras blow this X-A3 away with regards to AF speed and touchscreen capabilities.

But "Ah luv's Fuji in general," so it's stayin put!

To Gesture...

Mannn, I enjoy all of the Fuji cameras, but I have to say that I'm leaning towards the X-E series as my favorite. But Fuji seemingly does the Bayer sensor very well (meaning clarity and color tonality). Some folks would argue that they enjoy the Fuji rendering of Bayer sensors better than their X-Trans series, but all of that would be subjective. I will say however, that I was really looking forward to getting the X-A3 because when I got the X-A1 it was such a pleasant surprise in a number of areas.

Unfortunately, the X-A3 release is not the blockbuster release I had hoped for, but if Fuji can alleviate some of these issues (I don't expect them to do it all) with some FW updates (like they do with the X-Trans series), then the X-A3 could conceivably become better.

Link | Posted on Jul 12, 2017 at 19:38 UTC
On article Fujifilm X-A3 Review (209 comments in total)

Bingo! Just what I discovered and wrote about after getting the X-A3. I'm a RAW shooter only and in the end, regardless of the issues I discovered (slow and difficulty AF in very low light situations, a 1st generation horrible touch screen, and the inability to view the LCD in any type of bright conditions - whether in sunny or bright cloudy scenarios) I was still very much impressed with the superb IQ I've gotten from mine.

I only hope (yet doubt) that Fuji can release FW updates to correct any of this as there is only so much a FW update can do.

The IQ and DR (well, at least in RAW as I never shoot in JPG) were superb - so this baby is stayin' in my vast collection of goodies.

But yes, when you want to compare (overall) against its various competitors, there's lots to choose from. My entry level Micro 43 cameras blow this X-A3 away with regards to AF speed and touchscreen capabilities.

But "Ah luv's Fuji in general," so it's stayin put!

Link | Posted on Jul 12, 2017 at 15:09 UTC as 60th comment | 9 replies

You have to hand it to Tamron as they keep the ball rollin'. Talk about a lens with a huge focal range, but alas...some folks will overlook the genre of this lens and begin disparaging it (and similar all purpose zoom lenses) because it's (they're) not as sharp as prime lenses!!!!!! Sigh...

Link | Posted on Jun 23, 2017 at 16:42 UTC as 59th comment
On article Fujifilm X-A3 sample gallery (93 comments in total)
In reply to:

JohnBaker: I've been interested in a Fujifilm camera that didn't have an X-Trans sensor. Unfortunately the images out of this camera are lacking the bite in detail you see in the Sony A6000 series. You can see the softness in the studio sample comparison. That's a shame. The XA-3 shows very noticeably less color moire so it clearly has a much stronger blur filter than the a6000 series, assuming the later has a blur filter in the first place.

The JPGs are also awful for detail. Just like Canon's.

Soft JPG's could very well be due to a bad copy of the kit lens. I have seen bad copies of this lens. I'm almost betting on the fact that they used the XC 16-50 f3.5-5.6 IS. Use a good prime or better, higher end zoom and you'll see the massive detail this X-A3 is capable of capturing.

As an aside, I sometimes wonder in amazement at "some" of the samples taken by DPReview crew. Some can be fantastic, while others....errrr, well, what can I say.

Link | Posted on Jun 20, 2017 at 20:37 UTC
On article Fujifilm X-A3 sample gallery (93 comments in total)
In reply to:

Ben Herrmann: Fuji does Bayer very well as I discoverd shooting with the earlier X-A1 and now the X-A3. I posted my thoughts earlier about the X-A3 here:

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/59527870

As I indicated in my observations while using the camera, it's a keeper because in the end, the IQ is superb. But damnnnnnnnn....some of the operational quirks in getting to the end result - that wonderful IQ - can have you cursin' out loud.

I know Fuji is invested heavily in the X-Trans system, but I must add because they do the Bayer system in such a wonderful manner (subjective, I know), why they don't give us more options here is beyond me. Fuji releasing Bayer options only in the very entry level category is a big disconcerting - but hey, that's just me.

Would love to see a Bayer model with an EVF and much better LCD (see review) than they incorporated in the X-A3. And improve the AF also.

Hi Stacey...

FYI - the X-Trans sensor results can be deceiving, but make no mistake about it in that the files from the sensor can be downright outstanding and addicting.
It takes some time to master the RAF RAW file conversions, but when you do - depending on the software used - you will be rewarded with some outstanding files.

I'm so glad to see Iridient release their X-Transformer software for windows as I've arrived at some ideal settings that make the detail and overall balance of my X-Trans files look superb. So yes, I'm hooked on Fuji products in general. And to see Fuji doing the Bayer sensor files quite well, it is a bit disconcerting that they've relegated that model to the backburner.

Link | Posted on Jun 20, 2017 at 15:36 UTC
On article Fujifilm X-A3 sample gallery (93 comments in total)

Fuji does Bayer very well as I discoverd shooting with the earlier X-A1 and now the X-A3. I posted my thoughts earlier about the X-A3 here:

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/59527870

As I indicated in my observations while using the camera, it's a keeper because in the end, the IQ is superb. But damnnnnnnnn....some of the operational quirks in getting to the end result - that wonderful IQ - can have you cursin' out loud.

I know Fuji is invested heavily in the X-Trans system, but I must add because they do the Bayer system in such a wonderful manner (subjective, I know), why they don't give us more options here is beyond me. Fuji releasing Bayer options only in the very entry level category is a big disconcerting - but hey, that's just me.

Would love to see a Bayer model with an EVF and much better LCD (see review) than they incorporated in the X-A3. And improve the AF also.

Link | Posted on Jun 20, 2017 at 13:29 UTC as 13th comment | 8 replies
On article Olympus TG-5 gallery updated (70 comments in total)
In reply to:

Ben Herrmann: On the surface, these images look great - with a nice color tonality and clarity typically missing from cameras of this genre. But regardless of MP count, you can't escape the limitations of these small sensors.

Enlarge each image to 100% and you'll see the typical compression artifacts, noise, or what have you that has plagued most of these much smaller sensors, regardless of brand. But Olympus did a great job on this one. I can definitely see bringing this camera along when a heavy duty pocket camera will do.

And wallaaaaa...it has RAW capabilities which will help quite a bit in order to achieve the best IQ possible for the genre.

Yo Karroly - how does one say "Yo Momma" in French....

Link | Posted on Jun 18, 2017 at 22:04 UTC
On article Olympus TG-5 gallery updated (70 comments in total)
In reply to:

Ben Herrmann: On the surface, these images look great - with a nice color tonality and clarity typically missing from cameras of this genre. But regardless of MP count, you can't escape the limitations of these small sensors.

Enlarge each image to 100% and you'll see the typical compression artifacts, noise, or what have you that has plagued most of these much smaller sensors, regardless of brand. But Olympus did a great job on this one. I can definitely see bringing this camera along when a heavy duty pocket camera will do.

And wallaaaaa...it has RAW capabilities which will help quite a bit in order to achieve the best IQ possible for the genre.

Well, regarding the RAW capabilities vs. JPG - I've found for a long time now that in shooting in RAW with those small sensored cameras that have that file capability, I've still been able to elicit a bit more DR - not to mention lowering or raising shadows and/or hi-lights with less noise. Yes, there are definite limits, but I'll take one of these small sensored models that has RAW capabilities any day over JPG-only cameras.

Link | Posted on Jun 18, 2017 at 17:16 UTC
On article Olympus TG-5 gallery updated (70 comments in total)

On the surface, these images look great - with a nice color tonality and clarity typically missing from cameras of this genre. But regardless of MP count, you can't escape the limitations of these small sensors.

Enlarge each image to 100% and you'll see the typical compression artifacts, noise, or what have you that has plagued most of these much smaller sensors, regardless of brand. But Olympus did a great job on this one. I can definitely see bringing this camera along when a heavy duty pocket camera will do.

And wallaaaaa...it has RAW capabilities which will help quite a bit in order to achieve the best IQ possible for the genre.

Link | Posted on Jun 18, 2017 at 13:47 UTC as 14th comment | 14 replies
On article Fujifilm X-A3 added to studio scene comparison (105 comments in total)

The X-A3 is a superb camera with fantastic detail. However, there are so many operational issues (some subjective of course) during that the journey (towards getting the IQ) that it can be downright frustrating at times.

It has an entry level (as if it was 5-7 years old) touch screen scenario (sometimes you have to tape several times just to get the AF point right) and the LCD is virtually impossible to view in outdoor bright conditions - whether on sunny days or bright, overcast skies. This alone can have you screaming to the max.

But ohhhh, those files can be downright gorgeous. I personally don't care for the avant-garde styling of the camera (subjective, I know), and the brown version has more pink in it - only noticeable once you receive it. I think Fuji does Bayer very, very well. Just wish they produced one of these bayer version cameras with a viewfinder.

Link | Posted on Jun 9, 2017 at 16:01 UTC as 12th comment | 3 replies
On article Sigma SD Quattro H Review (693 comments in total)
In reply to:

Ben Herrmann: OK - so this now poses the question, "With all of the advances made in camera technology over the past decade (save perhaps with the Foveon sensor), how in the hell is it that Sigma is still producing ancient looking (and feeling) cameras that are way behind the power curve with regards to AF speed, high ISO cleanliness, DR, and so much more?" I mean, c'mon mannnnnn.....

Sure the Foveon colors are really nice (rich), but with all of the other issues that seem ongoing with Sigma camera releases, this means that very few will embrace their line of cameras. Now lenses are an entirely different matter.

Keep in mind that I used to own both the DP1 and DP2 and I enjoyed the foveon colors - but even way back then, the high ISO capabilities were non-existant and the cameras were slow.

Heck, I soon realized that I would only use foveon cameras during the daytime (sunlight). Fast forward to 2017 the same scenario holds true. Nobody is knocking the IQ for daytime scenarios - but if I'm going to spend money on a camera like this - I have to do so knowing that it comes with operational characteristics similar to what can be found back in 2006 or so. Yes, they are like little tanks these Sigma cameras - but if I want the same operational characteristics as cameras released 10 years ago, I minus well just reach for my old Olympus E-1.

Sorry Homies...it's not like I'm sayin', "Yo Momma" here. It's a camera and we all have our preferences.

Link | Posted on May 31, 2017 at 22:27 UTC
On article Sigma SD Quattro H Review (693 comments in total)
In reply to:

Ben Herrmann: OK - so this now poses the question, "With all of the advances made in camera technology over the past decade (save perhaps with the Foveon sensor), how in the hell is it that Sigma is still producing ancient looking (and feeling) cameras that are way behind the power curve with regards to AF speed, high ISO cleanliness, DR, and so much more?" I mean, c'mon mannnnnn.....

Sure the Foveon colors are really nice (rich), but with all of the other issues that seem ongoing with Sigma camera releases, this means that very few will embrace their line of cameras. Now lenses are an entirely different matter.

Hey gang...no need to get any bowels in an uproar. I used to own a few Sigma cameras awhile back. What I'm saying is that technology-wise with regards to things like AF speed, high ISO (read clean here) scenarios - even above ISO 400 - and a few other areas, the Sigma's have just not kept up.

Now if you like your Sigma - gosh, more power to you - one can't fault contentment with a product. As for me - and I've tried well over 120 cameras since 1998 - the Sigma line of cameras have not progressed much at all, other than the Foveon sensor upping the ante pixel-wise.

Link | Posted on May 31, 2017 at 21:34 UTC
On article Sigma SD Quattro H Review (693 comments in total)

OK - so this now poses the question, "With all of the advances made in camera technology over the past decade (save perhaps with the Foveon sensor), how in the hell is it that Sigma is still producing ancient looking (and feeling) cameras that are way behind the power curve with regards to AF speed, high ISO cleanliness, DR, and so much more?" I mean, c'mon mannnnnn.....

Sure the Foveon colors are really nice (rich), but with all of the other issues that seem ongoing with Sigma camera releases, this means that very few will embrace their line of cameras. Now lenses are an entirely different matter.

Link | Posted on May 31, 2017 at 16:15 UTC as 149th comment | 8 replies
On article Google will no longer develop Nik Collection (390 comments in total)

They announced this last year, so it's about a year old. I believe (I could be mistaken) that you may have mentioned this in the past.

Regardless of if they've stopped developing it, this suite is outstanding and will withstand the test of time. Too many excellent features to discard. And now that it's free, everyone should download the suite - you'll be glad you did.

Link | Posted on May 30, 2017 at 15:40 UTC as 211th comment | 2 replies
On article How do you know you need a new camera? (409 comments in total)

How do I know?

Haaaaaaa, that's an easy one for me. In my ole' age, whenever "da misses" says no to one of my perfectly timed overtures, then I instinctively say "yes" to getting another camera. Sigh, as you can tell, my profile indicates that there have been quite a few "no's" in my life. Damn, I'm depressed - perhaps time for another camera.

Ya gotta love life!!!!!

Link | Posted on May 28, 2017 at 02:36 UTC as 93rd comment
On article Throwback Thursday: Olympus C-8080 Wide Zoom (101 comments in total)

Yes!!! Am sooo glad that I still have one - mint at that w/battery grip. Like the venerable ole' 5MP E-1 that basically began the 4:3 movement, the form factor of this 2/3" sensored C8080 was second to none.

And looking at well-taken images with the C8080, those files can cause you to forget cameras that double or triple that MP count. And the magnesium build of this camera just made you smile.

Yes, it was slow with regards to RAW files. Damn - it took 13-15 seconds just to wait to write a RAW file and nothing would function until the camera wrote this file. The Super Fine JPG's are extraordinary and obvious wrote much, much faster.

And for those of you who had one of these 2/3" CCD early enthusiast models, you'd remember that the C8080 led the pack. Heck, if you can find one, get it if you can (provided it's a good copy after all of these years).

Just love this C8080 - and the C7070, which is the subject of another story.

This is a superb landscape photography camera!!!!

Link | Posted on May 18, 2017 at 13:12 UTC as 62nd comment | 1 reply

Love it! The images look sharper and also, RAW capabilities. I may get this one to go on those jaunts where water and "toughness" may be involved. Now if only Olympus could see to it that they update some of their other enthusiast cameras (and Fuji also for that matter).

Link | Posted on May 17, 2017 at 12:50 UTC as 56th comment
On article Canon EOS M6 Review (374 comments in total)

As I've said it through the years on these forums, every brand is capable of producing cameras that capture outstanding IQ and this M6 is no different. There will be the naysayers and then there will be the folks who love the new release(s)l. It's all part of the game.

The Canon EOS M series of cameras have been a pleasant surprise for me, having "accidentally" jumped into this line a few years ago. Since then I've acquired the M, M2, and M3 - love 'em all, despite them having quirks with regards to operational characteristics. Because in the end (for me), it's the IQ stupid!!!! And there's where the M series do quite well.

However, I've got to admit that I don't see myself getting any more M series cameras until Canon ups the ante by producing more lenses. It's a bit embarrassing that such a large company as Canon did not have a game plan for a continuous release schedule of suitable EF-M lenses when they announced and subsequently released the M line of cameras.

Link | Posted on May 16, 2017 at 17:35 UTC as 78th comment | 6 replies

Although a bit depressing - yet realistic, I would be concerned that Panasonic does a "Samsung" way of exiting the business. As you can recall, Samsung released two wonderful cameras - the NX1 and NX500 - both of which were state of the art. But shortly thereafter, they elected (without fanfare or formal announcement) to exit the market, leaving many of us NX users shocked.

So having been stung once, seeing this news by Panasonic is worrisome at best. Sure, they just released their GH5 and a few other lesser models, but as I mentioned above, that didn't stop Samsung from just departing the market..

Well gang, it's time to now buy up all of the Panny gear that you may have held off getting as you wait for prices to come down. Too long a wait could find you in the same boat as many Samsung users who were doing the same thing.

Link | Posted on Mar 27, 2017 at 20:11 UTC as 104th comment | 3 replies
Total: 61, showing: 1 – 20
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