Camera Gear

Super-telephoto Zoom shoot out: Nikon 200-500mm f/5.6 versus Sigma 150-600mm Sports

Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Sports Lens for Nikon FSigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Sports Lens for Nikon FThis has been an amazing year for long-lens shooters. For those who don’t want to break the bank and their backs with the Nikon or Canon 200-400mm models, there are now four exciting new options (three of which are available to both Nikon and Canon shooters):

Before we dig into some of the details, having shot with these lenses, they are all pretty amazing for what they provide at this relatively low price point. They are all head-and-shoulders above the older generation super-telephoto zooms from these companies. However, they are also bigger and heavier than the classic 120-400mm and 150-500mm designs they largely supercede. Which lens is right for you will depend on your specific budget and needs, but I can easily recommend all of them as quality products that provide good value.

What size camera is right for you?

It is a truism in photography that the best camera is the one you have with you. In that spirit, whenever I’m asked for advice on what new camera someone should buy, I try to figure out not just their budget and needs, but how much camera they’re really likely to be willing to carry around. For many, it isn’t obvious what they gain by “trading-up” to a larger, heavier, and more-expensive model. While it is always dangerous to generalize, there are certain rules of thumb about the pros and cons of various types of current-model digital cameras. We’ll help you sort through your options…

Nikon D810 field test–Why I’m planning to buy my review unit

For the past few weeks I’ve been shooting with a in a variety of situations. I wasn’t enough of a fan of the D800 to purchase one, so I didn’t expect to want to purchase my review either. However, Nikon has done enough to improve the camera that it is now a winner for me, and this one will likely be staying right here in my camera bag. Here’s why…

ThinkTank Retrospective 7: Finally a field-worthy modern camera bag that doesn't look like a camera bag

Think Tank Photo Retrospective 7 Shoulder Bag (Pinestone)Happy 2014, everyone. I wanted to start the year off right, so for our first review I’m covering a really slick camera bag I had the pleasure of using for nearly a month on my Southeast Asia photo tour. (If you’re in Las Vegas, you’ll see me with it at CES next week too). It is the new , although many of the points in the review apply equally well to its siblings like the , or the

Field test of the Tamron 24-70mm f/2.8 Lens: A pro lens at a prosumer price

Unless you make a lot of money with your mid-range zoom lens, or are willing to spend what it takes to get the best, $1900 for the 2 pound is a hard price to justify. For that price, you get an ultra-sharp, ultra-fast, lens, but you don’t even get VR. I’ve enjoyed using Sigma’s version, the . It is much less expensive, but not as solidly built and also isn’t stabilized. Until now there hasn’t been a value-priced version of a 24-70 f/2.8 that could measure up to the Nikon. That’s why I was excited to work with the new , which not only featured a fast focus motor but unique among mid-range pro zooms, also has image stabilization….


Think Tank Airport TakeOff: Finally a rolling photo backpack that works!

Like most nature photographers, I’ve used photo backpacks for most of my life. They’re great for getting around, working from vehicles, and fitting into small planes. But lugging them through airports or conference centers – especially when combined with other luggage – is hard work, and doesn’t get any easier with age. A roller bag that doubles as a backpack is the obvious solution, but there hasn’t been one that is compact enough to fit nicely in an overhead or on a vehicle seat, until now …

The ultimate photographer briefcase -- Think Tank Urban Disguise Field Test and Review

As a travel and nature photographer, I’m often carrying a large bag full of gear. But for many shorter trips, or for photo tours where I’ll only need shorter lenses, I’m always looking for the perfect travel photo bag that can double as my briefcase. It needs room for at least two cameras (I’m willing to check my third in a solid case or bring a rolling camera bag if I can carry a lot of gear on the plane), a few lenses, and at least one of my flashes. However, I also need to stash my laptop and papers in it – and these days even a tablet. So camera-only bags just don’t cut it. And most briefcases aren’t well suited as camera bags.

Panasonic Lumix 3D1: Two cameras in one – How cool is that?!

There is a lot of hype this month about Lytro and the potential for 3D photography, but for some real excitement, check out the Lumix 3D1. Featuring two fully functional cameras built into one point and shoot the 3D1 allows the simultaneous capture of video and stills, or wide-angle and telephoto images, or of course 2 images separated by enough distance to allow the automatic creation of 3D images from them. Expected to ship in December for $499, this camera will definitely break open a new world of possibilities for traditional point and shooters.

Canon’s New S100: A shirt-pocket camera to drool over!

If you want the ultimate shirt pocket camera, and can stand one in a little bit larger form factor than the ultra-tiny Elph series, Canon has kicked its “S” family up another notch by replacing the excellent S95 with the brand new S100. , it is almost impossible to believe the combination of quality and features in a camera this easy to have with you all the time…