‘Little’ Mercy




The Nikon 50mm F1.8D.


I’ve had it ages and thought it was rubbish – cost me £50.


I’ve just received one of my bodies back from Nikon Serivce, so thought I would test this beaten up little lens on it. As expected, rubbish.


But, I noticed it was front focussing somewhat, and, never having used fine tune before I gave it whirl, first confirming it could focus properly with live view.


And, hey presto! It has a new lease of life; saved itself from the bin.




Swings And Roundabouts


The XE2 has grown on me (considerably it seems). 


I’ve been using it a lot more in the last couple of days, mostly around the house, but a couple of things really jump out – the things I knew I liked anyway.


WYSIWYG (live view)  – the thing i miss most since jumping to Nikon DSLR. 


And secondly the size. Its tiny with the 35mm F1.4 attached. it fits in a little teeny bit of one of my Tenba bags, and in a fairly little handbag all by its lonesome.


I recently bought one of those ridiculous looking Black Rapid Yeti straps. I think it will be really worthwhile at the next wedding with a D800/24-70mm on one side and D800/70-200mm on the other. I’ll be sure to let you know!


Anyway, i might (look like a dork) and give it a spin in the next couple of days with a D800/70-200mm and Fuji XE2/35mm…the seaside beckons. 


Where was i? Oh yes, the Fuji XE2. Last night, child of mine, and myself decided to spend ten minutes fooling around taking pictures…..of her. It was great fun, all shot in Jpeg, using various ‘simulations’. As you can see from the images here, it turned out pretty well. 


I LOVE that i can see exactly what i’m shooting, all of the exposure settings including white balance. I would love to use it in my  little studio for a proper shoot, but alas it does not accept my Yongnuo triggers, all being Nikon specific. Apparently Fuji cameras work with the Canon specific ones. Bummer.


Anyhoo, time to hit the books. 



In Contention


Exactly which lenses/camera bodies comprise the ‘perfect’ kit?


In an effort to keep costs down, and to reduce the number of items to only those that matter, I’m trying to work out what exactly I need.


So, I have the two D800 bodies, and the two Tamron zooms. All good.


But what, if anything else, might I need?


I reckon I can safely say that a Macro is not necesary, as I’ve teased various lenses for their  near macro abilities, and in terms of ring shots etc, the 70-200mm does a good job at the long end, with the 36mpx of the D800 giving room to crop.


But, what about primes? Zooms have a max aperture of F2.8, which isn’t bad, but might make all the difference in dimly lit spaces. And I swear that anything indoors, outside of british summertime (all three weeks of it), is low light!


I question how much use apertures between F1.4 and F2.8 get during weddings etc. For portrait yes, but for the majority of the day, no.


So whether I may need a 50mm F1.4 or an 85mm F1.8 (or both) is something that will occur to me as the year goes on. I mentioned to a friend just today that the difference in quality between a Fuji 35mm F1.4 on an XE2 and a Sigma 50mm F1.4 ART on a D800 would be vast, and her interesting reply was along the lines of….’noticeable to who, and by how much at ordinary viewing sizes?


Very good point.



I Think I’ve Said It Before

I love Tamron. Well, for zooms at least. 


I really tried to NOT buy a 70-200mm F2.8 zoom, but I kept reading how versatile they are, and how brilliant the IQ from current models is.


I haven’t been happy with my tele prime. The IQ is stunning, but it lacks VR, which basically means that given the FL, indoors it needs quite fast shutter speeds (easily more than 1/FL for me personally)  and high ISO, which degrades said image quality. 


So I jumped in (of course I did) and I’m disappointingly impressed. 


 I kinda wanted the lenses I own to be as good, or better? But they pale in comparison. So, off to The Bay they go, whilst the the Tamron will stay alongside it’s sibling, the 24-70mm F2.8. Also annoyingly brilliant.


Maybe next the Tammy 90mm Macro….Or the Nikon 85mm F1.8G, or maybe even the Sigma 50mm ART! Choices, choices Lol. 



Small Packages

Don’t necessarily contain the best things.


On many levels my D800s’ would be hard to beat, and as yet I don’t think there is an MILC system that can beat it.


Yes, The Sony A7R matches it for resolution, and yes the A7s tops it in low light performance, and  M43 certainly has a great selection of lenses, but they all fall short in one area or another.


Now, onto Fuji. Lovely analogue looks in the XE2, optically revered lenses, so whats missing (apart from a flash system)?


Well, quite simply its not the XPro 1 is it?


I loved that camera, and with the 35mm F1.4 it was really impressive. The focus may not be a DSLR beater, but it was accurate (try that Nikon!). Files rendered beautifully at any ISO, whether Jpeg or RAW, and the low light performance was mind boggling.


The XE2 doesn’t do the same thing. I find the focus off quite frequently, and whilst the metering and DR are excellent the strange things that happen at ISO 800 and above are, well, strange.

chanel -1

I really did want a small camera that fits in a small bag and can go everywhere. And without going backward and buying an XPro or a NEX 7 – when the more current iterations of these cameras seem to have gone backward – I don’t think what I want is available to me right now.


As they say on Dragon’s Den ‘I’m Out’.