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The Official Head-Case Photography Thread.


Knuckledragger
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Managed to get out a bit with the cameras the last couple of days.

They finally took the wrappers off the Ghostbusters Library.

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Met a nice man that told me the world would end soon.

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The lady in the Gold shoes said he is nuts and just ignored his speech.

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Then I saw some crazy stuff so now I think he may be right.

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Been looking for something that is highly portable but takes acceptable photos. Since portability is key that ruled out the DSLRs, mirrorless and bridge cameras. Enter point and shoots. I've never owned one. I realize the image quality isn't going to be the same as my DSLR, but everything is a compromise.

The Fuji f300 looked like a nice option at it's price point but after seeing some photos from it that really isn't going to work. Enter the Canon s95. The photos seem more than acceptable for a P&S and I think it will be a nice option. Looked like the Panny LX-5 would also work well but that 2.0 aperature on the Canon is calling and the Panny is larger and has the lens cap to contend with. I really need something I can put into my pocket and carry with me.

Any downside to the s95 other than it's a P&S? Better options for small form factor and good images?

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Been looking for something that is highly portable but takes acceptable photos. Since portability is key that ruled out the DSLRs, mirrorless and bridge cameras. Enter point and shoots. I've never owned one. I realize the image quality isn't going to be the same as my DSLR, but everything is a compromise.

The Fuji f300 looked like a nice option at it's price point but after seeing some photos from it that really isn't going to work. Enter the Canon s95. The photos seem more than acceptable for a P&S and I think it will be a nice option. Looked like the Panny LX-5 would also work well but that 2.0 aperature on the Canon is calling and the Panny is larger and has the lens cap to contend with. I really need something I can put into my pocket and carry with me.

Any downside to the s95 other than it's a P&S? Better options for small form factor and good images?

I've done a lot of looking lately myself, and I'm leaning towards the S95 myself. I was going by these reviews that I found a while back (among a few others):

Canon S95 Review

Panasonic LX-5

It seems either of these should noticeably outperform my old Nikon S6 and Canon A460 or newer budget Sony DSC-S2100. So, I'd also love to hear some feedback about these two cameras too. Thanks!

Edited by HeadphoneAddict
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Been looking for something that is highly portable but takes acceptable photos. Since portability is key that ruled out the DSLRs, mirrorless and bridge cameras. Enter point and shoots. I've never owned one. I realize the image quality isn't going to be the same as my DSLR, but everything is a compromise.

The Fuji f300 looked like a nice option at it's price point but after seeing some photos from it that really isn't going to work. Enter the Canon s95. The photos seem more than acceptable for a P&S and I think it will be a nice option. Looked like the Panny LX-5 would also work well but that 2.0 aperature on the Canon is calling and the Panny is larger and has the lens cap to contend with. I really need something I can put into my pocket and carry with me.

Any downside to the s95 other than it's a P&S? Better options for small form factor and good images?

Check out the NEX5...I'm floored by how small and how awesome it is.

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I saw and handled three mirrorless cameras including the Nex-5. All three had their virtues but none met my definition of pocketable. Should be a nice camera for you Dan.

Larry, I've pretty well decided to go tomorrow to get an S95. Some nice looking images posted at http://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthread.php?t=926669. Truth is I don't think you can go wrong with either the LX-5 or the s95. They're both nice cameras.

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I have had the s95 for a few months now and it is a great camera. Very small and pocketable but it has an amazing amount of control options with a well designed UI.The one downside I had was that it was a little too small and it did not feel good holding it. The Franiec s95 Grip solved that problem and I am very happy with the purchase.

Edit: I am very impressed with its low-light capabilities.

Edited by morphsci
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I've done a lot of looking lately myself, and I'm leaning towards the S95 myself. I was going by these reviews that I found a while back (among a few others):

It seems either of these should noticeably outperform my old Nikon S6 and Canon A460 or newer budget Sony DSC-S2100. So, I'd also love to hear some feedback about these two cameras too. Thanks!

Out of those two I prefer the S95 since it's a bit smaller and I'm also more familiar Canon's control & menu system since I'm a Canon owner. However I'd rather grab the Olympus XZ-1 since its lens is a bit faster and it stays a lot faster on the telephoto end of the zoom range. That makes it a lot easier to get sharp pictures when you're zooming in on a distant subject.

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Out of those two I prefer the S95 since it's a bit smaller and I'm also more familiar Canon's control & menu system since I'm a Canon owner. However I'd rather grab the Olympus XZ-1 since its lens is a bit faster and it stays a lot faster on the telephoto end of the zoom range. That makes it a lot easier to get sharp pictures when you're zooming in on a distant subject.

Thanks, I'll investigate that one too. I've stayed away from Olympus in the past because I didn't want to deal with XD memory cards. I want to be able to fit it inside a front pants pocket if needed, so I'm not sure about the NEX5. I'd really like one that does well with indoors light without needing a flash all the time. My S6's indoor photos without flash are almost always blurred or grainy, and washed out with the flash.

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Thanks, I'll investigate that one too. I've stayed away from Olympus in the past because I didn't want to deal with XD memory cards. I want to be able to fit it inside a front pants pocket if needed, so I'm not sure about the NEX5. I'd really like one that does well with indoors light without needing a flash all the time. My S6's indoor photos without flash are almost always blurred or grainy, and washed out with the flash.

Nice comparison of the xz-1, s95, lx-5, g12 & tl500 http://kimletkeman.blogspot.com/2011/02/olympus-xz-1-versus-canon-s95-canon-g12.html

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When I recently got into Macro photography, I thought all those people were nuts going crazy with Macro Focus Rails, Macro ring flash, etc. Well, to do it right, one apparently needs them. It's very difficult to hand-hold and shoot macro, especially with narrow apertures one needs for DOF. Tried tripod but then the camera couldn't get close enough due to other objects in the way.

Anybody know a good, cheap(ish), sturdy macro focusing rail?

I was initially trying to get a much closer photo of this tube but gave up due to not-very-sharp results.

tube1o.jpg

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When I recently got into Macro photography, I thought all those people were nuts going crazy with Macro Focus Rails, Macro ring flash, etc. Well, to do it right, one apparently needs them. It's very difficult to hand-hold and shoot macro, especially with narrow apertures one needs for DOF. Tried tripod but then the camera couldn't get close enough due to other objects in the way.

Anybody know a good, cheap(ish), sturdy macro focusing rail?

I was initially trying to get a much closer photo of this tube but gave up due to not-very-sharp results.

tube1o.jpg

You could probably do with a ringflash and better lighting first.

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You could probably do with a ringflash and better lighting first.

Lighting has and will always be the bane of my photo existence. I've been researching and have decided against ring flashes due to lack of adjustability, casting of the ring shape, and the large expense. I've been seeing great results from people with on-camera flash with elaborate diffusors, so that's probably the way I'll go since I already have a flash. Still, I'm finding I usually prefer the results without flash and with "natural" light whenever I can create that, especially with reflective objects. The thought of carrying around an off-camera flash/light with light stand is not particularly appealing to me, either.

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I think a homemade softbox would work for you since you already have a flash. There's a ton of plans for them out on the net and they're simple enough to build. Or you could have a bit more fun building your own light tent, it's a little more involved but it gives more consistent results.

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I think a homemade softbox would work for you since you already have a flash. There's a ton of plans for them out on the net and they're simple enough to build. Or you could have a bit more fun building your own light tent, it's a little more involved but it gives more consistent results.

Looking around and having seen these DIY contraptions, I have now come to the conclusion photographers are just as lunatic as audiophools :) What fun!

In addition, I have created my (almost) first HDR today, and boy, this is WHOLE another can of worms...But fun!

mount3hdr2.jpg

Edited by Jon L
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The company I work at just moved this past week to a new location (due to expansion) and I wanted to share pics of the new digs. Because it's an awesome upgrade from where we were previously in almost every way - an 11-floor building and the company takes up 4 of them, and there's an even better view of the mountains now. I'm on the 7th floor and love the view. :)

(click any for larger)

Pics of the previous site - we took up the entire building in pic 1, 1 floor of the other adjoining building, and 1 floor of another unpictured building

th_wrm_01.jpg th_wrm_02.jpg

View of the mountains at the previous site from a 3rd floor conference room

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New building - 8th floor conference room area

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Facing east from the 8th floor conference room

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Wall pattern in a hallway on the 8th floor

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8th floor lounge area

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5th floor cafeteria

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life-size Elvis replica, the company mascot

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Pics following on from previous post:

Main entrance on 8th floor, and 7th floor entryway

th_wrm_11.jpg th_wrm_12.jpg

Facing west (towards the Rocky Mtns) from the 8th floor lounge area

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Exterior view of the east side of the building

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Another hallway, 7th floor

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Glass-paneled offices replete with sliding doors

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2 days later it snowed ;)

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Edited by Asr
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In addition, I have created my (almost) first HDR today, and boy, this is WHOLE another can of worms...But fun!

mount3hdr2.jpg

I don't see anything about that scene that really required HDR. The shadows are still fairly crushed, and the spots of direct sun on the mountain still look blown out. A perfectly exposed (i.e. exposed as much as possible without clipping), single RAW file should be able to be PP'ed to capture detail across the spectrum of that scene, depending on the dynamic range of the sensor on the camera used.

Man, there are just too many options to choose from for a good PnS camera. That shouldn't be a bad thing, but it can be overwhelming.

There really aren't that many options to choose from for a GOOD P&S. Canon G12 & S95, Olympus XZ1, Panasonic LX5, Samsung EX500...they are the current models with fast(er) lenses and RAW support. The Nikon P7000 still isn't up to compete with that crowd (IMO). I'd take the XZ1, and team it up with the superb Olympus digital viewfinder, if I really needed a P&S camera. Of course, the S95 still wins for size and convenience, but its' lens pales in comparison to the Oly's.

Facing west (towards the Rocky Mtns) from the 8th floor lounge area

wrm_14.jpg

Very nice new view you've got there. Of course, who needs a view, when you can just go drive up into those mountains in a matter of minutes, for a REAL view ;)

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Well, that's still a lot of choices to me - and I'm in the process of deciding what the most important features should be.

I'm leaning toward the S95 for the picture and size/portability, but don't like what I've read about the battery life or the aperture when using zoom. However, I can deal with carrying a spare battery. One review I read comparing the Olympus to the Canons and Panasonic found it's not as sharp. I like the idea of the better "brighter" lenses on the Olympus and Panasonic, and figured I might go for the LX5 over the XZ-1. Having to deal with a removable lens cap seems like a pain in the butt, but if the camera is good enough I could deal with it. I just want to be sure of what I'm getting this time, so I'm trying to do more research.

I think picture quality and speed of obtaining the shot will be my number one, especially indoors, then ease of use, size, and battery life. I'm mostly tired of missing shots because my camera is too slow to get ready or focus, or blurring the shots indoors. I also want one that saves movies as a .MOV and not an AVI, because my Macs all seem to choke on AVI videos - if they are imported into iPhoto and I double click on them from within iPhoto they wont open. I have to open them in the finder, after setting VLC to open all AVI files. I can't seem to find enough information about the video formats these cameras save files as.

I appreciate all the advice, thanks!

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Well, that's still a lot of choices to me - and I'm in the process of deciding what the most important features should be.

I'm leaning toward the S95 for the picture and size/portability, but don't like what I've read about the battery life or the aperture when using zoom. However, I can deal with carrying a spare battery. One review I read comparing the Olympus to the Canons and Panasonic found it's not as sharp. I like the idea of the better "brighter" lenses on the Olympus and Panasonic, and figured I might go for the LX5 over the XZ-1. Having to deal with a removable lens cap seems like a pain in the butt, but if the camera is good enough I could deal with it. I just want to be sure of what I'm getting this time, so I'm trying to do more research.

I think picture quality and speed of obtaining the shot will be my number one, especially indoors, then ease of use, size, and battery life. I'm mostly tired of missing shots because my camera is too slow to get ready or focus, or blurring the shots indoors. I also want one that saves movies as a .MOV and not an AVI, because my Macs all seem to choke on AVI videos - if they are imported into iPhoto and I double click on them from within iPhoto they wont open. I have to open them in the finder, after setting VLC to open all AVI files. I can't seem to find enough information about the video formats these cameras save files as.

I appreciate all the advice, thanks!

The reality is that ANY P&S camera is not going to be incredible at picture quality nor speed. in this regard, you will simply be choosing the one that is the lesser of many evils, relative to the speed and quality of even an entry-level DSLR. Among the models that I was discussing before, image quality is largely splitting hairs, and it mostly comes down to the mediocre signal-to-noise ratio, even at base ISO, and the associated noise reduction robbing detail (relative to larger sensored cameras). A P&S extremely sacrifices both AF speed and image quality for size. While the models that we discussed will be better than most, they are still P&S, so I don't want you to have unrealistic expectations. If you can go by a good camera store, and try out some of the models in person, that would be best, as you would know what you're getting, and experience the ergonomics, which can be very important as well.

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