Lives in United Kingdom Worthing, England, United Kingdom
Works as a Designer
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 one, they walk around the house photographing just about anything, from a wall socket to the floor to the cats face at one blurry cm. 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!

Later, grandparents gave me a (faulty, double exposed sometimes) Konica range finder before I bought a 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 and responsiveness 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. (I would put Pentax at the top for ergonomics in general. I fail to comprehend how the two largest camera makers, Canon and Nikon get away with such bizarre way to zoom in on a picture in playback mode. Nightmare!)

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 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 (from 4K video) 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 GH6'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 T series 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!)

Dear reader may be interested to know that I rarely do any post processing. I either don't have time or prefer things left as they are.. Only exception is to get creative or fix a photo that is priceless but needs tweaking, perhaps when underexposed or corrupted.

Update - April 25 2018 - This video still from DPReview's review of the new Sony A7III proves my aforementioned point re video being the future of photography:

Just wow!


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There is a notch at 0:12.

Link | Posted on May 24, 2018 at 13:46 UTC as 3rd comment

Been there done that, and worse. Dropped the GoPro whilst inserting the SD card and it is now orbiting planet Earth, or burned up...

Link | Posted on May 24, 2018 at 13:39 UTC as 3rd comment

When Sony who have been working on holographic projections for years release a true table top HoloVision system, then we will be there. And I mean, something you can walk around and view from any angle like you can a regular hologram, without any special glasses or optomechanical trickery.

Am worried this is going to be a gimmick, and once people have gone, cool, they will spend their money elsewhere on a more down to Earth 2D product.

Link | Posted on May 23, 2018 at 08:31 UTC as 3rd comment

Error in spec: It does not have an articulated display. I like Panny reliability, but the Oly wetcam / dampcam looks much cooler and has an articulated screen.

Link | Posted on May 12, 2018 at 00:07 UTC as 31st comment | 1 reply

I cannot help but see SOny in their brand. Naughty but crafty. Or is it crafty but naughty?

Link | Posted on May 2, 2018 at 05:35 UTC as 3rd comment | 1 reply
In reply to:

mxx: Glad to see Philips still going strong. I've been a fan of the company since the 70's when they were the only provider of loudspeaker drivers for DIY projects in my country. And of course in the early 60's they were responsible for a revolution in portable music by inventing the cassette tape. The design of their portable radios and cassette players were also quite stylish in those days, as well as their hi-fi equipment.

Indeed, and then they introduced the ambilight TVs that despite sounding like a gimmick, actually worked!

Link | Posted on Apr 28, 2018 at 08:14 UTC

Looking at some old photos of my since deceased family, I am now going to be asking some questions...

Link | Posted on Apr 28, 2018 at 08:11 UTC as 70th comment
In reply to:

MrTaikitso: Pity, their cameras were built like a tank and very innovative and versatile. Thing is, the IQ didn't catch up with the Samsung's, Sony's and Panasonic compacts of the world.

@erikolsen i stand (actually, lay in bed) corrected. i based my comment on one friends Casio compact. Truth is I always wanted a Casio but not easy to find in UK. They had some versatile pocket zooms with flippy screens, a little like a souped up Samsung EX2F (one of my fav cameras ever) or Panasonic TZ series, but ahead of their time functionally.

Link | Posted on Apr 26, 2018 at 04:06 UTC
On article Sony a7 III Review (2164 comments in total)
In reply to:

User9644463675: I think Sony is great own a nexus-7 camera but the price to enter over $3200 is very high.
I hope Sony is reading this.
I believe the best pictures are with the camera you have on you. I have been using a huwaei 10 mate and ordered the new huwaei pro 20 and that smartphone takes 40 mb pictures with it’s three Leica lens . For $1000 it’s better then spending $4000 or more unless you need an a7 iii for your profession. Read about huwaei on image resources.

I gave up on using my phone as a camera (Note 8) because despite the excellent IQ, I missed having a viewfinder to properly compose and/or check my pics and/or video - and focus. So I bought a Panasonic LX100, but am considering for my A camera, one of these (A7III) or GH5/GH5S. Panasonic ergonomics and versatility always win me over. Just wish they would drop 4/3rds already and put an FF in a GH body! Sony get light, and that's their No.1 strength.

Link | Posted on Apr 25, 2018 at 16:28 UTC

Pity, their cameras were built like a tank and very innovative and versatile. Thing is, the IQ didn't catch up with the Samsung's, Sony's and Panasonic compacts of the world.

Link | Posted on Apr 25, 2018 at 16:22 UTC as 81st comment | 2 replies
In reply to:

xoio: What a pretentious w*nky PR money sp*nk! LOL

But you do like, yah?

Link | Posted on Apr 25, 2018 at 16:18 UTC
On article Opinion: the Sony a7 III could be the new Nikon D750 (1232 comments in total)
In reply to:

Greg7579: DPR is clueless when it comes to mirrorless vs DSLR. DSLR is dead. Sony and Fuji are killing it. You write as if this incredible Sony camera is some kind of mid-level compromise. Wrong.

This article reminds me of the outrageous DPR XH-1 review. It made one of the three best cameras in the world sound mediocre.

You guys don't get it. You really have your heads in the sand and don't understand the panic mode Nikon and Canon are in.

Actually, sales of DSLRs are still good. 90% of people i see taking photos when not using phones are rocking a Canon 700D Rebel or similar. I am a Panasonic man at heart but never see anyone with a 4/3rds or even an A7. Only techies snd bloggers seem to use the mirrorless cams. My pro photographer friends still have their Canikons.

Link | Posted on Apr 16, 2018 at 01:57 UTC

Sorry, the bar scene is like a painting, the noise reduction is so intense. I would far prefer a black and white scene shot with a higher ISO, so there was a little bit of film like grain caused by the noise than intentional noise reductions.
You cannot bend the laws of physics. This is why despite owning a Note 8 (camera is almost as good as this P20 Pro), I conceded and went back to a proper camera, LX100 in this case. Lower MP, but more 'realistic' results, and a viewfinder, and tactile manual controls.

Link | Posted on Apr 5, 2018 at 07:46 UTC as 21st comment | 2 replies
In reply to:

steelhead3: I would like to know why NHK is always on the forefront of pushing broadcast TV and China is 1st with 5g roll out. What has happened to US business and pushing the frontier of innovation. The only thing they seem to care about is merging with their competition.

Socialist / state backed infrastructure based nations such as Singapore etc are way better at that. Ultra capitalist nations like UK / USA are the worst at roads, Internet and healthy food. I have travelled and experienced it.

Link | Posted on Apr 3, 2018 at 20:16 UTC
In reply to:

starbase218: Well I might buy a new camera in, say, 4 to 6 months or so. Or I might want to wait and see what the new Nikon mirrorless platform will offer.

Panasonic need to go full frame, period. Apply their outstanding ergonomics, versatility, natural colour (why I like them) and reliability to the inevitable future that Sony have proven valid with their FF sensors, but not their usability. The young people I know getting into videography in particular only mention Sony A series. (GH5s may be superb, but it requires extras to harness it's goodness, such as a stabiliser.) Put an FF sensor in the GH6, have it shoot 8K video and release a versatile compact zoom (hard I know due to the laws of physics), and they can hit Canikon where it hurts. Hurry up!

Link | Posted on Apr 3, 2018 at 08:02 UTC
In reply to:

Michael1000: Cameras should be able to do everything that the best smartphones can do, and more. Most cameras can't even do 4K video, let alone 4K60 that the latest smart phones can do. They have no connection to the internet. Most cameras don't have HDR modes. The Samsung Galaxy S9+ is another shot across the bow with dual aperture lens, standard and telephoto lenses, 4K60 video, bokeh mode, optical image stabilization, slow motion video, photos while shooting video.

@Michael1000 - Since my comment, I just bought an LX100. Why? Tactile controls and more importantly, a viewfinder. Even the new well reviewed Huawei P20 Pro with it's THREE lenses lacks either, so you cannot compose your shot in an intimate fashion away from gazes or bright sunshine whilst twiddling the controls. I'm no longer going to consider the camera when buying a phone, and keep my LX100 around my neck 12/24. (IE, during the day!) :)

Link | Posted on Apr 2, 2018 at 09:52 UTC
In reply to:

MarioV: The next LX100 should at least have a 20MP sensor that does a sharp 18MP multi-aspect ratio. I prefer 3:2 for general use. No crop in 4K video. 4K50p, even for a few minutes, would be great. Built-in ND. Weather sealed. It would compete directly with Canon G1X III - but be a lot more useful.

Plus tilt or flip screen (and/or GX8 style flip up viewfinder), slightly easier to grip manual focus ring, 60fps 4K and USB-C in camera charging, like my GoPro Hero 6.
(Just got an LX100 and love it. Why did I wait so long?!)

Link | Posted on Mar 31, 2018 at 19:26 UTC
On article Video: Canon shows off its new 120MP APS-H CMOS sensor (217 comments in total)
In reply to:

mario loconte: This is for surveillance, I'm waiting for canon coming with a decent mirrorless camera, perhaps with 14bit raw that will not blown highlights. And 4K full frame with dual pixels.
The essential.

It's 2020 in two years, the Tokyo Olympics are being shot in 8K, which from both a photography and videography angle, is the future. Perfect resolution to allow 20MP stills or 8K video to be viewed on an 80" Monitor or TV without the human eye able to discern the pixels. 8K will overtake 4K quicker than 4K did 2K because it will be acceptable a resolution for 10-20 years.

In a nutshell, if Canon want to usurp Panasonic and Sony who own affordable pro videography (GH5!A7 series), they have to own 8K from day one and use their superb auto focus technology as the cherry.
(BTW, never owned Canon, a Panny man, but do crave full size sensors and respect Canon's pedigree. Always liked their ads in National Geographic.)

(To those doubters, see threads on 4K on this very website a few years ago. And now it's standard.)

Link | Posted on Mar 30, 2018 at 08:21 UTC
On article Lytro is officially shutting down (207 comments in total)
In reply to:

ThatCamFan: I saw this coming from the first day the company made the first lytro. If people did not see this coming from day one well I can not tell you how blind you are. This was too much of a niche to ever succeed and gain widespread demand or media use.

They had too much money ($200m) so probably refused to sell their tech to Nikon or Canon or Panasonic who would have made it relevant. Panasonic killed Lytro with their pre focus tech that's been in their cameras for a few years now. For the price of a Lytro, you can get a G80/85 that does it too wit substantially better IQ and features. And now the phones do it already.

Link | Posted on Mar 29, 2018 at 15:27 UTC
On article Lytro is officially shutting down (207 comments in total)
In reply to:

zorgon: It doesn't take a genius to figure out that photographers don't want to pay mid-range-DSLR money for a camera with the IQ of a 10-year-old webcam.

Potato cam. Pul-ease!

Link | Posted on Mar 29, 2018 at 15:25 UTC
Total: 365, showing: 1 – 20
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