This year has had one significant introduction after another in new camera bodies, systems, and film. Sony has introduced the A7riii and A7iii. Both mostly great and maybe the greatest full frame mirrorless cameras of today. Nikon has put forward the A7 & A6 full frame mirrorless designs with new lenses. So far to me this looks like the biggest contender of the Sony’s. Canon EOSR. A great camera, except, no ibis and big crop on video at 4K. Both Nikon and Canon have only one data card slot. This is a big omission. Fuji XT3. Another great camera, but crop sensor and no ibis. Fuji again with the R version of their medium format camera. This looks like a great landscape camera but lacks features that are in the full frames. Panasonic now is talking about their S line for full frame mirrorless, but full specs are not available. And then Zeiss and their ZX1. Complete specs are not available and neither is the price. As I said in my previous post I love this ZX1 concept. I want one. But I want one based on specs that I imagine but are not confirmed yet along with the price.
I would like to buy a new full frame mirrorless camera. I currently have a Nikon D750 DSLR and would like something smaller and lighter plus has an electronic viewfinder. Of the ones above that we actually know the specs and price of I would say the Sony’s and the Nikon’s are the closest to what I want. But here is the thing, I am not sure I like either enough more than the Nikon D750 to switch. I like have tried the A7riii and did not like the way it felt in my hand and thought the menu-control system to be difficult. I do like the dual SD cards. The Nikon Z7’s are just now getting shipped to their buyers. So far I have heard good feedback. But I don’t really want to switch to XQD cards. My three computers all have SD card readers but not XQD. So dongle time would be the case with the Nikons. And I like the dual card slots I have on the D750. I don’t like the fact that Nikon is charging a lot more for a 50mm f1.8 than and F mount 50mm f1.4. Actually I don’t like that a lot.
Or for that mater Nikon charging 50% more for the Z mount 35mm f1.8 than the F mount f1.8. Even the 24-70 f4 is more than I recently paid for the F mount 24-120 f4.
And neither the Sony’s or the Nikon’s have settings adjustments for the all important aperture, shutter speed, and ISO dials. Ones I can see at a glance like Zeiss and Fuji. The Sony and Nikon do have quick change on aperture and and shutter speed but not in the elegant way Zeiss and Fuji do.
And then the Fuji XT3. What a great camera with dedicated settings for aperture, shutter speed, ISO, and exposure compensation. And it is a beautiful camera, far more so than the Sonys. And a bit prettier than the Nikons. Plus it is cheaper than any of the full frames. But no 35mm sensor. What were they thinking??? The whole World is going back to the best image size ever invented full frame 35mm and they stick with crop size? And no ibis to top it off. But I have to say the simplicity of the Fuji and quality of materials, and the smaller size have great appeal.
I have no experience with Canon cameras except that several of my friends and relatives have and like them. Most prominently my professional TV and Movie cameraman son who is about ready to go back to a Canon DSLR after having a Sony A7S for two years. His reason, “Canon has better colors”. And this is a person who uses $100,000 camera rigs in his work. So maybe when the Canon R is in the stores I will take a closer look. Right now I don’t like the one card slot of the Canon or the no ibis. Plus it is big unlike the Fuji. But Canon has an extremely good reputation so maybe more on it later.
Like Canon I have no experience with Panasonic. Their two full frame bodies look quite good, but no final specs or prices yet. So more to come on these two later.
Kodak Ektrachrome is finally shipping. After the unexpected Zeiss ZX1 this Kodak announcement was the most exciting of the German show. I like shooting with film. I like the look of the results I get from my old SLR cameras (4 of them with lots of lenses) and one very nice Voightlander rangefinder with a set of 3 lenses. On our summer trip this year I did not shoot as much film as I had planned as I bought the D750 just before the trip and was still experimenting with it. But one of the rolls I shot was Kodak Tmax 100. I used my Minolta 600si for this film and all of the shots turned out. I was being lazy and did not use any filters for the whole roll, which was a mistake. I should have used a yellow, orange, or red for daylight shots.
Both of these above shots were from this roll of Tmax. The second shot was a lean out the moving train shot with 100 speed film and an unstabilized lens. The camera was set to auto focus and worked perfectly. It has 3 auto focus points and not 500 like modern cameras.
The above 3 shots are from Portra 400 film that was about a year expired. All were shot on a 40 year old Olympus OM2n and 50mm f1.8. One of the best film SLRs ever made.
And the above three were from inexpensive Kodak Gold 200 that was expired two years. I used my second Olympus OM2n to shoot these. The Kodak Gold really did it’s job, but if I had it to do over again would have shot with fresh film. Keep in mind these were shot with a very simple old meter in the Oly and then put through medium priced developing and only mid range scanning (3000 x 2000).
So I am thrilled to be able to get Kodak Ektachrome fresh again. I fully expect that Kodak’s new formulation will be better than the old Kodak Ektachrome. This film is being made in the United States in Rochester New York and is shipping from the factory now. The new Ektachrome is the “natural” formulation and not the old “vivid” formulation as per an interview I watched yesterday from a Kodak spokesperson. Why am I thrilled? Slide film has punch you cannot get from negative film. And you can project slide film on a screen without electronics. One downside is reduced dynamic range. As you can see from the three color photos above, the Kodak Gold has tremendous dynamic range. I have already called one of the local camera shops to get an estimate as to when they are getting the film. Guess is second week in Oct.