Submitted by David Cardinal on Tue, 12/23/2014 - 08:59
I’ve always lusted after a Leica Rangefinder camera. They were, and for some still are, the epitome of image quality and style. However, by the time I had enough money to even think seriously about buying one, much of my photography involved wildlife and sports – so my photo budget went to big cameras, bigger lenses, and travel to places where I could find my subjects. So it was with great excitement that I started my fieldtest of Panasonic’s with Leica lens…
Submitted by David Cardinal on Wed, 11/19/2014 - 09:29
There is no doubt that the biggest market for the novel iStabilizer "monopod" for your smartphone (or small point and shoot) will be taking better selfies. Getting the camera away from your face, and not having to hold your arm at an awkward angle is a big win. But as a photographer, I was also intrigued by the possibilities it offered for getting shots from unusual perspectives….
Submitted by David Cardinal on Tue, 11/11/2014 - 08:05
Canon shooters who don’t want to lug a huge and expensive telephoto zoom along with them, and haven’t wanted to go third party have had only one option for the past 16 years (believe it or not, that’s how long it has been). Finally Canon has introduced a totally revamped model, the . The new lens has all the right specs:
Submitted by David Cardinal on Mon, 11/10/2014 - 10:56
I’ve always envied pros wandering around with their classic Domke photo bags. Sleek, practical, and oozing history, they were also rugged enough to take a beating anywhere in the world. However, whether because I needed to lug large lenses, carry a laptop, or have a bag with enough padding so that I could check it in a pinch, there was never a Domke that fit my needs. Until now. The new bag is perfect for a traveling photographers “walk-around” gear and laptop. I’ve been using one for a few weeks, so I have plenty of experiences with it to share with you…
Submitted by David Cardinal on Mon, 11/03/2014 - 11:24
The first impression you get when taking a out of the box is that it is the perfect size and shape for a DSLR (at least for me). It is smaller and lighter than other "semi-pro" models, with a deep hand grip that makes it easy to carry in one hand – even without a strap. It’s no mirrorless or rangefinder, but a pleasant change from larger DSLRs.
Submitted by David Cardinal on Mon, 10/20/2014 - 14:32
Like most of you, I’m always a bit skeptical of third party lenses until I get to give them a good workout. The need for a fast, but not insanely large, zoom for my recent gorilla trekking experience led me to the (newish) . The specs – lighter and smaller than the Nikon version, with Vibration Compensation included – were appealing. By themselves, that wouldn’t have convinced me to try it. Coupled with its off the charts performance when tested by DxOMark with the Nikon D800e (as close as test as I could find to the I’d be using it with), I was sold on the idea of using it as my go-to mid-range zoom in Africa. I wasn’t disappointed…
Submitted by David Cardinal on Fri, 09/12/2014 - 08:18
Nikon’s new has something for nearly everyone. State-of-the-art Autofocus, improved 24MP sensor, brand-new, high-performance body design, 6.5 fps full-frame, 100% viewfinder, pro-quality video features, tilting LCD, and a fairly sane price tag of $2300. It is going to be a hard camera to resist for current owners of the Nikon D600, , , and even those who have a Nikon D800 but would love a little more speed and are getting tired of super-large files. I’ll be doing a full field-test when I’m back from Africa, but based on the specs, here are my quick thoughts on pros & cons:
Submitted by David Cardinal on Thu, 08/21/2014 - 09:30
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…
Submitted by David Cardinal on Wed, 08/13/2014 - 09:53
Every July I return to Alaska to photograph the amazing Coastal Brown (aka “Grizzly”) Bears. Over the course of 15 years I’ve used over a dozen different cameras, and at least that many lenses to capture images. Typically at least one of my lenses would be a massive telephoto (400mm f/2.8 or 200-400 f/4, or 120-300 f/2.8). This year, as part of my ongoing effort to identify lighter, less expensive alternatives to large and extremely expensive lenses, I decided to shoot for the entire two safaris with “just” a attached to my Nikon D610. My hope was to see whether this new, sub-$3K lens could do a good job of subbing for larger, more expensive alteratives….
Submitted by David Cardinal on Mon, 08/11/2014 - 13:50
While having a good painting program isn’t a requirement for most photographers, it can come in handy for sketching out ideas for the “bones” of an image (thanks to John-Paul Caponigro for effectively demonstrating that point to me originally). My favorite when I’m on Windows (or Mac) is ArtRage. The company has just released a solid update to version 4.5. I’ve been using the beta for awhile now and have been quite pleased with the new features…
Submitted by David Cardinal on Wed, 08/06/2014 - 08:53
One of the advances Nikon has made with the is the complete removal of the low-pass (aka anti-aliasing) filter. The Nikon D800e achieved a similar effect by adding a second filter layer to undo the effects of the anti-aliasing filter, but the move to eliminate it completely in the D810 goes a step further. The concern, of course, is the potential for increased moire, or color interference patterns, in small details. To test out the for moire in landscapes, I chose the Milwaukee skyline…
Submitted by David Cardinal on Mon, 07/28/2014 - 13:55
B&H now has the new in stock. They have a limited supply, and will no doubt sell out soon. As tested by DxOMark, it set the all time image quality record with a score of 97 points (just beating out the D800 and D800e). I’m in the middle of field-testing my review unit, so I don’t have a full report, but wanted to get the word out before the first shipment disappears. As to what I’ve found so far…
Submitted by David Cardinal on Thu, 06/26/2014 - 10:09
Starting in late July, Nikon will be shipping its anticipated update to the Nikon D800/e. The is an upgrade in nearly every aspect of camera and video performance, although each single change is not dramatic. Faster frame rate (5fps full-frame, 7fps DX with battery pack), improved Autofocus, improved sensor with better low-light performance, upgrades for videographers, and a removed low-pass filter (ala the “e”) with improved anti-moire are some of the highlights. The price is the same as the original Nikon D800e price – $3300. The new model will likely be very popular with owners of the current models, and with some D600 owners looking to get more resolution and a few more features. We’ll review the camera when it is available, of course! In the meantime, if you're gung-ho, you can .
Submitted by David Cardinal on Thu, 05/15/2014 - 08:01
After two weeks of nearly constant shooting with the during my photo workshops in Texas, I am more impressed than ever with the camera. I’ve already posted about its ultra-high-ISO capability, but this field test was more about how it performed as an action camera in both good and poor light situations. In short, it delivered. The Autofocus is the fastest I’ve ever used, and the nearly instant triggering of the shutter allowed me to capture more peaks of action than with any other DSLR I’ve used….
Submitted by David Cardinal on Sun, 04/27/2014 - 15:45
by David Cardinal
There is no question that Sigma has really upped its game with its new family of Global Vision lenses. I love the GV-version of the , and continue to feel it is the world’s . This month I’ve had the pleasure of shooting with its new on both a and a . The short version is that the lens lives up to the Global Vision brand, but read on to see whether it might be the right mid-range zoom for you: