Most Photo-Video Enthusiasts Should Have Several Cameras

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Top Photo from iPhone 11 Pro using standard camera app.

When I review camera news both video and regular articles I get a sense that most are viewing their subject camera body or phone camera in light of getting the best or perfect camera.  To me trying to find the best camera is like trying to find the best car, there is no best for all uses but only the best for the job at hand.

Shot with Nikon Z50 and 50-250mm Nikon Z50 lens

Way back in 2012 after owning about 4 Sony small or compact digital cameras I started looking for a large (ish) digital to replace my full frame film cameras.  I read and read all sorts of recommendations and then just followed Ken Rockwell’s advice to get a Nikon D3200 with 18-55, 55-200mm, and 35 f 1.8.  I liked the new Nikon but instead of killing my film use I actually started buying more film and using both digital and film cameras.  This has not changed, on our latest travel event I used my smart phone, full frame digital camera, and full frame film camera.

What I have learned is that different image capture tools fit different subjects, my mood, and if I am shooting stills or video.  I recently bought the new Nikon Z50 with two lenses and a Nikon Z7 with 24-70 f4.  I am still going to shoot some film.

Nikon Z7 using 24-70 f4 Nikon lens

It has taken a while for me to figure this out.  But back in the day I had a full frame SLR interchangeable lens camera, a pocket 35mm film camera, and a medium format film camera.  Today my system seems to be

  1. The latest Apple smart phone camera for stills and video.  12 mega pixels.
  2. A Sony super zoom pocket camera for stills and video when I need to get a subject close but don’t or can’t carry a bigger camera around.  19 mega pixels.
  3. Nikon crop sensor for high quality stills and video when I want to use a big camera but not huge.  20 mega pixels.
  4. Nikon full frame for detailed high quality stills and video.  47 mega pixels.
  5. Full frame film camera.  When I want the different look and surprise of film.  49 mega pixel scans but limited by film detail.
Shot with a Minolta 600si Minolta 50mm f1.4 and Kodak Color Plus film.  Developed and scanned by North Coast Photographic Services.  

There are advantages and disadvantages to all of these tools, but they all give results I like.  The realization that no one tool is best or the only one to use has taken a long time, but now I can relax and just enjoy creating images and video.  I don’t have to wait for the latest advances in smart phones that will render all older phone cameras obsolete.  I don’t have to watch and listen to multiple  video creators tell me about the newest revolutionary billion mega pixel super camera.  Or listen to the latest pod cast about why film is dead.  Or DSLRs are dead.  Or one camera brand or another is dying.

My new Moto is, “If it works, use it”.

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