Lives in United Kingdom Warwickshire, England, United Kingdom
Works as a Designer
Has a website at
Joined on Jul 4, 2009
About me:

It all started in the 1970s when my parents bought me a Boots Instamatic film camera. I can remember doing what most children do when first getting their hands on a camera, they walk around the house photographing just about anything, from a wall socket to the floor. Things took a turn for the better when I won the annual photographic competition at my school 2 years in a row - using same Boots camera!

Then and later when I acquired a Konica range finder before my Minolta X-700 SLR, my father would scold me every time I pressed the shutter with "Alexander! That's 40p!" Was so happy when it all went digital and I could blow raspberries to that!

Being a UX person in my day job, I believe handling to be the most important aspect of a camera, and no one has got it right yet, although Fuji, Olympus, Pentax and Panasonic come closest to 'getting it' when it comes to position of controls and dials, the tactile feel and the way it all comes together.

Although I do once every year or so get paid to shoot photos or video by clients of my business if we become involved in their web presence, photography and video is mainly a hobby. My focus is 'recording' our family in a fly on the wall manner (I often leave camera on tripod recording video over a meal or during Christmas present unwrapping) and also making a historical record of my business and the development of it's technical innovations.

I believe (and Panasonic are executing on this) that video is the future of photography - no matter how some purists may react. As I type this on January 10 2016, having just been on a photographic walkabout in Savernake Forest, and shot some 4K video using my new GX8 plus Olympus 12-40 f2.8 M.Zuiko Pro, and then viewed it on my Dell 27" 4K monitor, the evidence is in: Hit Pause on the keyboard during playback (or grab a frame from a video editor) and the IQ of the still image is now equal to that of a high end prosumer camera or mid level DSLR of not long ago.

Of course, we will ALWAYS shoot stills (only way to get creative per shot), but for events, quote me on this, a few strategically placed Panasonic 'GH5's will capture the event in glorious 8K, and then later, the 'videophotographer' will pick frames from the various feeds, or even allow the client to do this.
(Samsung's amazing T1 and T3 pocket SSDs now make it practical to 'carry' high def video with you.)

And no doubt, VR will become part of the capture process too, although I have concerns about the technology's impact on society. (A topic beyond the scope of this DPreview bio!)

Anyway, back to the bio bit, I may considering releasing for sale some of my more creative photos.

Dear reader may be interested to know that I never do any post processing. I either don't have time or prefer things left as they came out of the camera. Only exception is to get creative or to fix a photo that is priceless but needs tweaking, perhaps when under exposed or corrupted.


Total: 254, showing: 1 – 20
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In reply to:

Richard Murdey: Because nothing says "camera" like an enormous plastic lens molding around the standard tiny smartphone camera module.

Exactly! Who thing is a POS. Chinese (70s style 'quality') re-death of once iconic brand.

Link | Posted on Oct 21, 2016 at 05:13 UTC
In reply to:

Kris Sky: This camera sucks.

So does our new Dyson.

Link | Posted on Oct 16, 2016 at 18:39 UTC
In reply to:

keeponkeepingon: lol. 2GB! My browser is saying it will take an hour to download with my horrible internet connection. Thanks for pointing out why 4K is impractical for most folks.......

Here in the U of K, we have crap weather, crap food (unless you're at a country pub, and even then it's getting pricey), our women are (sorry, has to be said) - fat, covered in tats and accompanied by their noisy brats, our roads are at a standstill, the railways don't work, there's trash on TV (like 'merica) and we still think we own - and rule - the world! Rule Britannia!


Thanks to OFCOM (only public agency that achieves anything useful over here), we now have 50MB Broadband at home for the same or LESS money than the 7MB we had only a year or so ago.

And now we have Virtual Reality, so the men will get fat too playing addictive immersive games over their speedy broadband. Oh dear, cannot win eh?

Link | Posted on Oct 16, 2016 at 18:38 UTC
In reply to:

tkbslc: I'm not too paranoid in general, but I just wonder what is in this for Google. I mean they are hosting Petabytes of photos for free, with no upsell or advertising as a revenue stream like flickr, etc. Why are they doing this and what is the end goal?

Actually, and most of our Google data is used for this, they process our photos for machine learning. Harmless but clever. IE, their big AI will see millions of variations of what people tag with say "My Ford Escort" and be better able to identify Ford Escort vehicles from various angles and in different colours in other peoples photos and normal public web searches for keyword searching. And so on.

Link | Posted on Oct 14, 2016 at 00:17 UTC
In reply to:

JurijTurnsek: The takeaway: the Pixel duo underutilizes the chip and you should wait for a Snapdragon 830, 4K60p, OIS, HDR video flagships of 2017. Hopefully not Samsung's, since that amount of heat would spell disaster for them ;)

I have a Sony Xperia Z3 (and before that a Z1), 2014 models, they stop recording 4K video after a few minutes when the CPU gets too hot. I think in Samsung's case the technology for monitoring the battery temperature failed so they simply increased in temp until 'boom'. All said, I would get a Note 7 if still available, but it isn't so getting an S7, the camera on the S7s series is outstanding in every way. (Even my former Note 4 was superb at 4K and daylight stills.) The Google Pixel is too boring, so am giving it a miss alas.

Link | Posted on Oct 13, 2016 at 17:42 UTC

Does it bounce?

Link | Posted on Oct 12, 2016 at 19:22 UTC as 176th comment
In reply to:

JoeWall: For those who are impressed by the technical specs (in body 5 axis IS, 4k, 1080p120 etc.), beware!

Sony is first and foremost an electronics company interested in iterating products as quickly as possible, and as a result, none of its products are polished. e.g. lost of A7II / A7RII users have bricked cameras because the stabilization system is stuck.. which would never happen on a 5D or a D810. Color is poor, compared to the more organic looks of Fuji, Canon or Nikon. Buttons are mushy with no solid feel. The software esp the menus are very poor and it's like they were done by a software engineer and not designed by and for an actual photographer.

If you have lots of disposable income to get every year the next electronic gadget from Sony, then it's ok. However if you want to build a system with lenses that will last you for 10 or 20 years, look elsewhere.

Agreed. I have had issues with the colours and user experience on all my Sonys. They are excellent at engineering petit gadgets, and can pull of a good one every so often, such as the RX-1 a while back, but on the whole, they need to really sort out a) Reliability (my f717 packed in within warranty, and most of my other Sony gear has) b) User experience. The controls on the RX-100 are awful, a contrast to say the Panasonic G80/85 (new) or Fuji models.

Link | Posted on Oct 6, 2016 at 16:02 UTC
In reply to:

Treeshade: With touchscreen, oversampling 4K, slow-mo, phase detect video AF, it is the best budget video machine in the market - if it does not overheat.

How about putting it in a larger body with better cooling, larger grip, and one more battery slot?

And please make IBIS works with 4K like Olympus and Panasonic.

GH5 baby!

Link | Posted on Oct 6, 2016 at 15:57 UTC
On article Aura is a next generation digital picture frame (75 comments in total)

I customised and gave our mum a still superb, fast and nice looking water/tea? proof Sony Xperia Tablet Z, (Mk1!) It has a very well designed charging dock that angles it perfectly for photo viewing. I had an engineer customize a slide show app that pulls images off a shared album in Google Photos and displays them in random order. Anyone in our family can upload new pics (new babies etc!) and erase old ones from anywhere.

Cost? £250. Fact it is an Amdroid tablet also means mum can pick it up and read content on it or manually browse the photos. When she puts it back in the dock, the slideshow auto starts.

Been working about three years now without any issues. (It is programmed to power off at night and back on in morning.)

Link | Posted on Oct 3, 2016 at 22:05 UTC as 32nd comment

This is cool. A startup does what Google failed to do, produce a modular product. And get the execution right with oodles of fun extras too.

Link | Posted on Sep 29, 2016 at 19:29 UTC as 2nd comment
On article DJI goes portable with the Mavic Pro (161 comments in total)
In reply to:

Icypeak: This looks quite excellent - The first drone that I will consider buying. My remaining concern is the video quality - the samples frankly look quite soft compared with my GoPro Hero4.

If DJI do what most other electronics and gadget makers do (Canon & Panasonic most def), they will intentionally ‘cripple’ the quality of their prosumer/consumer products to separate them from their professional sales. IE, the camera on the Mavic may even use superior components to the Phantom (simply due to sourcing and cost, after all, price/performance improves with everything over time), BUT like the Casio FX39 calculator I used at college in 1981-2, whose superior functions were also available on a lesser model, but not shown on the keys, DJI will use firmware to reduce the image quality from the Mavic to keep it away from their pro market sales where the margins are probably larger. Again, not saying this is the case with the Mavic, but it is how the whole world works really, alas! Perfection, always tomorrow…

Link | Posted on Sep 28, 2016 at 13:13 UTC
In reply to:

RolliPoli: Fuji is back building MF equipment. What could have been more important news than that at this year's Photokina? I say that as someone who has only ever owned one Fujifilm camera and hasn't shot with it for several years; a GSW 6x9 The GFZ 50s is one mighty imaging device, even if it doesn't have an optical view finder. ;)

it sort of does, they give you the option to choose between fixed or adjustable, GX8 style. clips onto the top!

Link | Posted on Sep 26, 2016 at 18:48 UTC
On article Kúla Bebe is a 3D lens attachment for your smartphone (13 comments in total)

Don't know what phone they used to model the left shot, but it's glass rear is cracked along the top and right. Very clear to see! Update: Could be a Samsung Galaxy S6 by the edges and antenna lines.

I recall HTC built a an Android phone with two cameras that were further enough apart to generate a stereoscopic image. Gawd bless Google and eBay, here you go:

Link | Posted on Sep 25, 2016 at 09:30 UTC as 6th comment | 1 reply
On article Video: First look at the Panasonic G85/G80 (32 comments in total)

Grr, I had a GX8 (capable of outstanding results with good glass) and the two flaws that spoiled it's potential for video were the 2.5mm mic jack and the way the articulating display hit the mic cable. I cannot tell if Panasonic have used a 3.5mm jack this time, but as the issue with the position of the jack has still not been resolved, it makes no difference. What a pain!

Link | Posted on Sep 22, 2016 at 00:44 UTC as 3rd comment | 1 reply
In reply to:

MrTaikitso: Not wanting to sound like a grumpy old fart (I'm a grumpy middle aged fart), in view of the way in which some youth are behaving here in the UK (massive street fights becoming common, even at schools), there is thanks to social media and awful reality and celebrity TV a mass dumbing down and loss of discipline and social ethics.

@KAllen Here is another one:

(Believe me, the country is a mess. Just visit one of our town high streets any given weekday or Saturday mid afternoon.)

Link | Posted on Sep 21, 2016 at 13:05 UTC
In reply to:

MrTaikitso: Not wanting to sound like a grumpy old fart (I'm a grumpy middle aged fart), in view of the way in which some youth are behaving here in the UK (massive street fights becoming common, even at schools), there is thanks to social media and awful reality and celebrity TV a mass dumbing down and loss of discipline and social ethics.


(One of many, most go on in our cities, not schools.)

Link | Posted on Sep 21, 2016 at 11:03 UTC

Not wanting to sound like a grumpy old fart (I'm a grumpy middle aged fart), in view of the way in which some youth are behaving here in the UK (massive street fights becoming common, even at schools), there is thanks to social media and awful reality and celebrity TV a mass dumbing down and loss of discipline and social ethics.

Link | Posted on Sep 21, 2016 at 07:49 UTC as 45th comment | 5 replies

I have to date been a Panasonic man, but always liked the aesthetic of the Oly cameras and lenses and also noticed the images have more 'pop'. But being a video guy, stayed with Panny. However, this appeals. Does anyone who is neutral have any comments on the pros and cons of this over day the new Panasonic G80/85? The handling on the G7 is superb, but in a way, is similar to the Olys with the position of the twin dials. I used to have a GX8 with a superb Oly Zuiko Pro 12-40mm, so I guess would use the same lens if I moved to this E-M1 Mark II, for video.

Link | Posted on Sep 20, 2016 at 08:23 UTC as 28th comment | 4 replies
In reply to:

MrTaikitso: If the 'follow me' mode is as good or better than the DJI Phantom 4 does then GoPro have a hit on their hands. One thing, anyone know what the flight time is on one battery charge? Latest DJI is about 25 mins.

It does have a 'selfie' mode from reports which I assume is the same. Priceless feature.

Link | Posted on Sep 19, 2016 at 20:11 UTC
In reply to:

surlezi: The question is: how much ?

If you have to ask. ;)

Link | Posted on Sep 19, 2016 at 18:42 UTC
Total: 254, showing: 1 – 20
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