A review ( Or something similar..) of the Fujifilm X-T3
Ok, so this will be my thoughts and experiences about the Fujifilm X-T3 after using it 6 months.
Im no spring chicken when it comes to the Fuji system, as i have now for the second time committed to buying Fuji cameras and lenses. The first ”fujiphase” i went through was year ago when after traveling i saw the X-T1 and became smitted with the look and feel if the camera.
I brought it with me together with 3 lenses to Paris the first time, and was so happy with it and the pictures i managed to shoot with it. Some of them which are still my favorite pictures.
After hauling my Nikon D700 and the 24-70 and other lenses through the streets of Rome, i felt blessed getting to carry the Fuji gear around. It saved my shoulders and back and i had fun instead of constantly complaining about having to carry so much gear.
Also the Fuji X-T1 was so much fun to shoot! Loved everything about it.
Time went on and i also got the successor in X-T2. The improved AF and other features were welcome, but the need for a grip felt a little annoying at times to boost the speed enough on the camera. Still, it had most of what i loved with the X-T1. My favorite lenses after using the system for a while then was the mighty 16mm 1,4, the 56mm 1,2 and the 90mm 2,0.
Other lenses i used and also liked very very much were 10-24( which i shot most of my architecture etc in Paris with ), the 23mm 1,4 ( was not used much though since i had the 10-24 already ) and the 16-55 2,8.
For most of my work and other projects i was using Nikon and was also very happy with that, but for all the fun day to day shooting i loved using the Fuji cameras and lenses.
As i have written in another blogpost a few years back i had my eyes on a Leica Q ( which i also wrote a short review about earlier ). And after thinking it trough a long long while i decided at that point to sell my Fuji system and buy it.
I was lusting for the Q several years and while i DID love Fuji and have had so much fun with it, i just wanted to at least have tried the Q since it felt so close to what i loved shooting on a daily basis. So i took the plunge and did not learn my lesson that time, lost a lot of money selling and buying the Q.
On to the Q, which was a new love affair when it comes to cameras for sure.
It lived up to my already high expectations and beyond. Except my Nikon Df its probably going to be one of my favorite cameras ever.
Even so i went through yet another phase of ”upgrading” when i saw the X-T3 coming out. It got such rave reviews, and it adressed some of the ”shortcomings” like the grip from the X-T2 i complained about earlier.
Also in my private life i had a son, and while i shot his birth on the Leica Q i was planning ahead and felt that a camera like the X-T3 and lenses to match would be a great small system to yet again record the daily family life in the near future.
So i did it again, i went through all the pain of selling the Q and buying the X-T3 and my favorite lenses, i knew a part of me would regret it, but i tried to be practical about it and see the benefits i would have with the ability to change lenses and the really good AF of the new X-T3.
And yes, i lost a lot of money going through that process again and thought to myself that i hope this is the last ”upgrade” for a long while..
So, i felt right at home with the Fuji system again. I had my beloved lens setup again and the X-T3 which WAS amazing in many ways to be honest. Fast, good-looking ( this time i went with the silver version ), great video if one is interested in that.
This time around i was actually happy for those features considering my son being born. Not only getting stills from his development was a very nice touch with the X-T3.
The X-T3 is like many reviews when it came out said a great great camera, one of the best mirrorless cameras out there for sure. And in my opinion one of the most versatile cameras out there and in such a small package.
It might not have the same solid Eye-AF of the Sony cameras. or as many pixels of some of the other big boys out there, but it punches above its waist for sure and many seem to like using it a lot more than other cameras out there, which is a very important aspect of photography as well.
Being inspired is 80% for me, almost all cameras out now are such capable cameras, so the ”connection” with a camera and the feel of a camera is a big deal to me.
And the X-T3 delivers in that regard. The ergonomics are great, it feels good in the hands, i always liked the tactile fel of the Iso wheel and the other buttons. The retro look is also a big plus for me, always was drawn to that in the earlier versions as well.
Was it built more poorly than the X-T2 and 1?
I heard a lot of rumblings about the X-T3 being manufactured in china instead and how that effected the quality. I can’t say i noticed any difference. And while one complaint i have with the X-T3 has to do with the quality , its more of the fact that i picked the silver version than the X-T3 being any worse than before.
I had the black X-T2 and X-T1 and the black finish did not scratch as easily as the silver on the X-T3 did. I was very very careful and had a half case at all times already from start, but even so putting it down and taking it out of the bag managed to wear the corners down a bit up top, and just moving the half case wore on the silver finish at the bottom to easy for my liking.
Other than that i felt the X-T3 was as good as the earlier versions when it came to build.
I did not really see any horrid difference when it came to the low light capabilities of the X-T3. I also heard those discussions about the noise being worse. I DID notice it, but not to the point of being disappointed enough to feel it was not a worthy upgrade considering all those other added upgrades like the Low ISO and the faster AF and better video etc .
Over all was a splendid camera. IS a splendid camera. I will tell you in a bit why i made a freudian slip there and used the word was in a bit.
For me shooting street photography a lot besides family pictures and portraits, the new faster AF and face detection abilities etc was awesome. Walking around with the 16mm or the 90 and just picking great moments fast was something every street shooter would want and love to be able to.
Also the lower Iso capability was very nice for those landscapes and they felt more vivid and more dynamic than before in my mind.
I felt like the legendary ”worms” were not as much of a problem than earlier, i never have had that much of a problem with it in the past even if i did see it in some instances, but it felt even less of a problem now and i have the same workflow in LR and Alien Expsoure as before.
Final thoughts about my long time with Fuji and my thoughts on the latest version i used and why i keep referring to it in those terms.
I will never forget using the Fuji system for many reasons, and maybe i will come back to the cameras and lenses in the future. But this time around it will be a long while.
I think from the 3 bodies i used liked the X-T1 the most. It felt like a blast from the past using it, the retro look, the wow factor being able to produce such great pictures with such a small system at that point was amazing.
The X-T2 was a better camera technically in many ways but did not make me go wow as the X-T1 had. Still loved using the camera and lenses though, and would not want to use any other brand out there at that time more.
The X-T3 was even better in many ways with all the blows and whistles and added features. But for some reason an old friend kept on beckoning to me telling me my long story with Fuji was at the last stages. And maybe for that reason i never really warmed up to the X-T3 like i had to the earlier versions. because its still one of the very best cameras i have used, and a LOT of fun to use.
So this concludes my thoughts and my long love story for Fuji, and now the camera and old friend that made me sell the Fuji system for the 2d time..
Hi again the Leica Q……or, the Q-P!
Yes, it was the Q or rather the ”new” Q-P that made me take the plunge again. And i want to stress the point that it had nothing to do with the Fuji X-T3 being a worse camera in any way shape or form. id say it outshines the Q in many ways technically.
It is just that the Q just suit my personal photographic needs better in some ways. And it inspires me in a way that not many other cameras have.
And like i said earlier that is more important than most other technical specs in cameras for me.
But i will talk more about the Q-P in the future. This post and ”review” was about the X-T3 and Fuji in general. And even though i did sell the system in the end, i can highly recommend it to anyone wanting great cameras that you will like to shoot with. They made me fall in love with photography again after several years when i found the X-T1, i hope they will do that for many other as well.
/Over and out.
So i decided i needed to review this camera at this point in time.
I have now owned it for about a year and have really been testing it in a lot of different environments and situations and feel it is indeed worthy of a review now.
First of all let me tell you a little bit about my decision making for buying this camera to begin with. After all the price puts most people off and so it also did for me at first.
At the time hearing about the Leica Q i owned Nikon cameras( the D4, the D700 and the Nikon Df) but was also heavily invested into the Fuji system. The Nikon gear i had, filled the need for any professional work i had to do or any more demanding projects i had or wanted to do. And the Fuji gear (the X-T2 and the X100F) i bought mostly because i wanted a dependable travel camera and a day to day compact camera that still could produce beautiful pictures as well as being portable. It did all that for me and more. I really liked my Fuji cameras. And the excellent lenses that i used for my X-T2.
I heard from a friend that owned the Leica Q that it was a wonderful camera and he loved shooting with it. I started reading about it and found it to be a really good camera from what i could see. At the time( just before getting the X100F actually) i was on the fence of either getting my X100F or maybe some other great compact camera for street photography. They both got rave reviews and so the choice was a tough one even then. The decision in the end became the X100F for a few reasons i will detail now. First it was the price , which i had a hard time justifying because i also saw the opportunity to buy a lens for my Nikon cameras but also get the X100F and still have money left to get something else in comparison to if i had got the Q.
Also another reason was the risqué of getting robbed. yes using a Leica as a street shooting camera in my mind was going to be tougher for me since i felt that i would be conscious of the price all the time picking it up in less populated or rough areas.
Those two reasons alone made me crossing the Q off my list at that point in time..
Time went by and i used the X100F happily and took many great pictures with it. It complimented my X-T2 superbly using the same batteries and other accessories made it a great duo to depend on for different situations.
However, overtime having two systems with all those lenses( yes i know…a pretty good ”problem” to have by most peoples estimations) became something of a hassle for me every time i was going out somewhere to shoot. Do i pick the Nikon cameras with lenses or the Fuji cameras. Then what lenses should i bring for the X-T2? It actually became something of a hinderance for me and took away some of the fun and simplicity of taking pictures. It sort of killed the desire and creativity in me for a period of time even though i really enjoyed the gear itself.
So i started toying with the idea of selling my whole Fuji System that i was so heavily invested into, and then buy a Leica Q. I spoke to my friend that i knew shot with it on a regular basis, and he still used it as his go to camera and was still in love with it. Of course he really tried to convince me into getting it, but i also felt that he was very sincere in his feelings towards the Leica Q. I started warming up to the idea of making a switch and sat down to really think it through before i would take the plunge.
I also had to take into consideration that it was an ”older” camera by now by today standards and how much value it would hold if i after buying it for some reason decided i did not like it. When you buy something that expensive you really have to think it through properly and take everything into consideration in my opinion. After all we loose so much money all the time in this hobby or line or work that just going on a hunch or feeling is a bit reckless in my opinion.
I was not too scared of that though after reading how happy people had been with this camera but also that it stood the test of time really well even today. People still sold it for a good amount and it still rivaled or competed with the other top of the line compact cameras that were sold today.
Browsing around on different sites selling the camera i quickly found out not many here in Sweden actually had it in stock. I found a few though and one of them were selling the Q with as the Platinum addition.
I decided i would take the plunge and started selling off my Fuji gear one piece at a time but not loose too much money at the same time made it a slower process than what i had hoped for. After about a month i had sold most of it and ordered the Q.
The package it came with was beautiful, and right from the start you get the feeling of something very special.
And the camera itself was also one of the best looking cameras i have ever seen or held to be honest.
Right away i could feel the sturdiness of the camera body, it felt like a german tank in a small package! Felt really great to hold and maneuver. The simplicity of the menus and where they had chosen to put the buttons were really intuitive and well made as well. Wheels and buttons also felt sturdy when pressing them, like something that would not break after many years of usage, really a reliable feeling all around.
And like i have seen in many other reviews it right away felt like a camera you want to pick up and shoot with, and i hoped that it would inspire me to do just that in the future and i will tell you a little about that further down and also if it held up to my pretty big expectations.
The following weeks i started to get acquainted with my new friend, fidgeting with controls and menus and trying to customise it in the way i liked it. Coming from Fuji cameras with so many options and buttons just playing with the Leica Q made it feel so simple in comparison. I wont lie though, a part of me those first weeks really missed some aspects of my X-T2 and the lenses as well. I realise that the Q will not fill the big shoes of all the gear i used to have entirely.
But most importantly it will fill that need of a smaller camera being able to take great photos and being versatile wherever i take it and doing it in a simple way making me less stressed over the technical side of things.
So i already knew that the first month or so would be a learning curve and being able to cope with that ”loss” of what i was used to and the doubt nagging in my mind sometimes if i had made the right choice.
I brought the Q pretty much everywhere, to the children birthday parties, hiking, photowalks in town shooting street, and most other day to day activities.
So how doest it hold up during those activities and where does it shine and where does it show any shortcomings in my opinion?
Well i would say its strongest point would be as a day to day documentary camera. To be able to document pretty much everything around you from nature, portraits of kids and adults or animals in their environment and street scenes when thing are happening in the moment. Because of its pretty fast and accurate Af you rarely miss any shots with the Leica Q. Also the lens itself renders beautifully and give you very sharp images when you nail the focus. I know it has OIS but i read in a few places it degraded the IQ a tad (not that i really have seen any difference comparing) so i used it a few times in the beginning but rarely felt i had any need for that. I used it up to over 6000 in ISO very comfortably without ruining the shot.
So you are really able to shoot in most lighting conditions which is also incredible for such a small camera and also makes it a companion you know you will always be able to get some usable and most of the time beautiful photos out of if you know how to use it.
I know many say its designed as somewhat of a perfect street photography camera and i heard the designers had that in mind reading on some forums. And yes with the fast Af, very simple menu and simple button layout it makes for a very fast and simple camera to capture the moment. But for me it has two ”shortcomings” for being the perfect street camera. And the first being its size, sure for giving you the superb IQ its a small camera, but its not at all pocketable. And in my opinion to be a perfect street camera its supposed to be pocketable just so you don’t have to go down into your bag every time you want to capture a moment. Then why don’t you just have it on a wristband so its out at all times and ready to shoot with you ask.
Well then we arrive at ”shortcoming” nr two for being the perfect street camera. The allure for thieves to grab it when you have it out and about all the time. With the X100F i never really had that feeling, sure that camera was also not cheap, but it was still not in the same league and wont set you back as much as the Q.
But that is also something that might be true for just myself, i know many people shooting with Leica cameras and that are not worried at all bringing it pretty much everywhere. I must say that after using it for a while now, that sense of awareness when i shoot with it has become less of a problem and i find myself using it more freely than i did in the beginning. Still, it is something to be aware of if you are scared of using expensive equipment around cities and other populated areas.
Its still a terrific street camera for its usability though and i have been shooting street with it a lot. Its just that it would be an even more perfect camera if not for those two things. But for shooting day to day events and day to day life its perfect. Its small enough to not be intimidating, and it also makes people interested( not a good thing in rough areas!, speaking of thieves) and i had quite a few people coming up to me wanting to discuss Leica cameras or wondering what kind of camera it is.
Its also very silent so just walking around with it photographing family or people in general most wont even notice you or hear you taking their photos. So i would say its superb for that kind of photography in mind.
Another great style of shooting with the Q would be nature and travel photography in general. Its not a heavy camera and traveling with it( except maybe for the theft part again) would be great. You just need a small camera bag and its not heavy to carry with you in most places. The colors and rendering of the lens are beautiful, and you can take very nice detailed images of landscapes and use your macro( which i will adress later on) for bugs and flowers etc on your travels.
Its also a lot of fun having that versatility and being able to capture most things on your hike or trip. Also being able to get that shallow depth of field with the excellent 1,7 aperture Summilux is great. Makes for some really creative and nice shots of those kinds of subjects.
How does it fare in portraiture? Well actually i have used it a lot for that. And although the 28 mm FOV is not the most common perspective for a portrait, the colors and shallow depth of field makes for some interesting and beautiful portraits. Especially shooting kids in my opinion. But i have also shot some nice photos of people in their environment, and there again comes in my mind one of the pros of the camera, the ability to take good documentary styled portraits like on a wedding for example.
I am actually going to test it on a wedding this summer, so i will know for sure if its a great wedding camera overall after that( i hope i don’t have to eat my own words after this summer…), but in my mind using it now for a while it should be great for that as a backup camera, documenting the bride and groom getting ready before the ceremony. And shooting the dinner and dance afterwards as well.
Now im not the most ”technical” person when it comes to cameras, and i rarely dive into manuals etc, but rather have a user friendly approach to using them and rather learn by testing things out. But the Q is quite simple to learn ans setup in my opinion and some features worth mentioning are:
The Macro function. With a little flick on the lens itself you turn the lens into a macro lens and while im not into Macro that much myself, its a pretty cool function to have when you do want it. I heard it was a pretty decent macro at that.
Touch Screen, which is kind of nice to have.I use it to scroll through my pictures in playmode from time to time.
Also it has a Touch AF function which is great for street photography when you don’t want anyone to notice you taking their picture. Something they adressed in their newest firmware was the ability to make user profiles, and that makes it able to now program a user profile with touch AF and one without the touch af so you don’t have to dive into the menu to switch between regular Af and the touch Af function. That was something that i felt was quite annoying at first getting the camera, because in the earlier FW that was not an option. So i am very happy Leica adressed that after a while.
Its also very good for manual focus, and while i don’t use it THAT often i know people using other Leica cameras are very happy with that on the Q. It has a great focus peaking option where you can set a certain color to help you nail the focus and that work great. The manual focusing is also very smooth on the lens and feels great to use.
Another not that uncommon feature is using it in monochrome to see in black or white when you shoot. I have not used that very much but its a nice function to have for street photography when you want to capture in only monochrome and makes its easier to compose your shots in my opinion. The images still comes out in color when you download them in RAW though but its nice if you want to download them to your smartphone for example.
That is another feature that of course exist in most cameras nowadays. The wifi function and being able to downloading your images using the Leica app.
The app and function is not the easiest one around and not the most intuitive, but after getting it to work and learning how to download them its a great thing to be able to do. A must for a camera you want to use on a day to day basis in my opinion.
Whats more to say about the Leica Q. Well for me hearing about the Leica ”experience” and the Leica look i was quite interested and keen on seeing what that was all about. I can say using it those first few weeks i did not see anything pop out of the screen screaming Leica.
However using it now for quite some time i can attest to that at least the leica Q has SOMETHING..not sure what that really is or if its something that you in your subconscious have been looking for and therefor makes you read into it too much, but there is something very unique that i like, in the rendering of the lens and the colors straight from the camera. The image quality is great, and you rarely have to tweak your images much after downloading them. In monochrome there is also something special using the Leica Q, i cannot say why, but they just look very nice the way i want them to look. And the 28 FOV was something i at least had no problem getting used to. I like using 24mm a lot for documentary style photography and the 28 is just slightly more narrow than that. So its even more suited for portraiture in the environment than the 24 for example.
I never bothered getting any special accessories for the Q. You get a strap which is really nice in the box, and since it was the platinum edition you get an upgraded steel grey rope styled one which is even cooler than the one you get in the black edition. Other than that i got a really good ”stealth” cover from Teciac (shout out to them, 3d printing at its best!) which besides covering the red dot for shooting in those rough areas also give you a lovely extra grip so you feel even safer handholding it without the strap when you do your photowalks.
So what is my overall opinion and experience of the Leica Q. It certainly tick most of my boxes for what a camera should have. It is fun to use, it takes beautiful crisp colorful images. It is easy to use and very very intuitive. Its lovely to hold and the thumb grip that is on the back of the camera give you a pretty decent comfortable grip despite the camera itself being a little slick.
The ergonomics are great with the button layout and the feel of using the camera and overall the experience holding and using it is a magnificent experience in my opinion.
The only things i think could be better in my mind would be maybe adding a few more Fn buttons to be able to customize it even more. But at least Leica listened to their customers and added some more usability in their latest FW and you now have the user profiles which you can program into several different profiles for shooting in different types of situations and environments.
And other than the size and maybe the price this camera is probably one of the most fun and better cameras i have shot with in my life. The only other camera that gives me the same feeling and as much fun to use would be maybe my Nikon Df, and after that maybe my Fuji X-T2 which was also a fun and great camera to use. But the Leica Q will definitely have a special place in my photography heart.
I hope this in some way help you and others out there maybe being in my shoes at that time, not sure what camera to get and maybe have the same style of shooting as me and being stuck in a dry spot of creativity. the Leica Q would definitely help you get out of that and be inspired again. Trust me.
/over and out.
Hi, this is my Fujifilm X100F review. I thought this would be a good time to share some thoughts about this little camera after spending some serious time with it.
As before i will not go into great technical detail about the camera, i merely like to share some of my enthusiasm but at the same time also be honest about what i consider its shortcomings and what not.
First of all i never had the chance to try the earlier cameras in this series out as i always felt the 23mm lens was too limited for me at that time.
At this stage though , using other cameras like Nikon D4, D700, Df and also the Fuji X-T2, i felt that adding a smaller camera to actually simplify things and get back to basics with something that would be able to travel with me a little easier than those other camera bodies.
Also i was at a stage where i wanted something to inspire me and i did not have to drag all those extra lenses with me, something to spark my creativity again, and i feel that the X100F really managed to do just that.
It is a fun camera to use, and that was the most important thing for me after spending a lot of time reading through reviews and pondering over if i should take the plunge and buy it. It is not a cheap camera at all, so i had to take that into consideration as well. A part of me had a hard time justifying buying such a small camera for that amount, having all those other bodies and lenses as well.
One other big reason was the ability to get very good Jpegs straight from the camera, something adding to the quick and fun way of using such a camera. Just the thought of going into town one day, bring the X100F take some street shots and upload them to social media and not having to edit them at all was a huge plus for me.
I shoot a lot of street photography, and have used my Nikon Df or my X-T1 or X-T2 for that task earlier. But the X100F is much more unobtrusive and stealthy than those other cameras even if those are great cameras for their own use and area as well. But the X100F is so silent, that shutter is SO quiet. Also the size of the camera itself as i mentioned is so small and the retro look somehow makes people more at ease when you are around them and shoot. Something so important when you are shooting street.
So lets begin with what i like the most about the camera.
First the size and look, it really speaks to me in a good way, i always liked that retro look and the X100F just looks so simple and clean.
I went with a silver one as i already have the X-T2 and the Nikon Df in black. Looks amazing.
The Film Simulations are very nice. I had read a lot about them before buying it, and that part did not disappoint at all. I use the Acros Filmsim the most, but also the Velvia and Classic Chrome from time to time.
Making some small adjustments like adding some plus in shadows or some minus in Highlights to protect those and you get exactly what you like straight from the camera after using it for a while. I am still playing around with different settings to get it to my taste but i am very happy with what i get right now.
The lens itself is both the Pro and the Con of the X100F for me. I like that it is one fixed lens, it makes it easier and makes you just go out and shoot and use it, sometimes all that gear and lenses makes you hesitate, and that is what i wanted to avoid with this camera.
I read beforehand about the 23mm lens being ”soft” and not that sharp in some reviews. For me it is perfect for what i use it for. Shooting street , both environmental portraits and regular street shots of people. But i also find it very nice for candid portraits and such. I like the tones and colors as well when i shoot people with it. Its not the sharpest lens i have wide open sure, but its very good for what i intended it for.
The built in ND filter is very very nice. It has saved me many times on those sunny days when its just too light to shoot like i want.
The layout of buttons and ergonomics are fine in my opinion. They are similar to my Fuji X-T2 which is a bonus, and uses the same batteries which is awesome. Sometimes using both cameras when i travel they compliment each other very well. So if you already use another Fuji camera that is a plus. It also uses the same Joystick, and that is a great thing to, makes it so much easier moving around the focus point if you need to. I usually just use the focus/recompose method with the X100F though for faster shooting. I programmed the Af to the back of the commando wheel. So i use that to focus, then recompose and take the picture. That works alright , but the buttons are a little small and maybe a better dedicated button like a AF-ON button you get on some Nikons would be handy instead. But the way it is setup now is fine.
What i do not like or would have wanted:
I would have loved weather sealing! Taking it with me everywhere the weather sealing would have been a very nice thing. Being hesitant to bring it out in wet weather or environments kind of limit you, especially if you live in Sweden, not a very dry environment most of the time.
Sure, faster AF if i shoot pictures of my kids would sometimes be nice, but mostly as i said its sufficient for the street photography i do.
The size, while a Pro comparing it to the bigger bodies i own, is still a little on the big side if you want it to fit in your pocket. Its small enough to throw it into your Man-purse( yes i am guilty of using one from time to time! ) though which i do most of the time.
The Silver coating is really nice, but i got it scratched very fast having some keys in the camera bag i had that day, i was actually on my way getting the dedicated Fuji leather case that very day, a case that afterwards have saved me from more blemishes on the camera. Not sure the black version would have made any difference, but make sure to protect it with a case or be very careful putting it near anything in your bag that could potentially scratch it.
In the best of worlds i would have liked a inbuilt lens cap as well, but i have owned several other models ( like the Panasonic Lx3 and lx5) that used the added lens cap instead. Just would make for an even easier and faster shooting experience.
Overall i really like this camera, it gave me a lot of inspiration and when i doubt of what camera to bring the X100F makes the pick more times than any other camera now. Its simple to use, and the quality is great. I think for such a small camera it feels like a big camera if you know what i mean, it gave me the same confidence as when i at one point bought the LX3 all those years ago. That the images coming out of it felt usable, and gave you some creative choices, something other smaller point and shoot cameras do not in my opinion.
/Over and out..
I recently got this new photographic toy in the mailbox and wanted to test it out.
I gathered my willing subjects Yasmine and Linnea and started to make a temporary studio in my hallway using a few Nikon SB flashes and a lastolite background.
I have actually never used a ring flash of any sort in the past so this was my first shot at testing one. I decided upon the ”Roundflash” after reading a lot of positive things about it. Especially for the price it seemed like avery good choice. I read about the Orbis and some other cheaper alternatives but i thought the Roundflash got better reviews overall than the others.
I read several users claiming it could be a pain to set up so was preparing myself for a bit of a hassle there, but to be honest it was quite nice and easy to put up.
I DO agree on that folding it tp put it away was a bit more tricky, but that is the case with most things in my opinion, like tents and umbrellas and all sorts of things you have to fold. its always easier to set it up. I never seem to be able to put it back like i got it out of the box the first time 😉
My subjects choose their wardrobe for this one themselves and that was sort of the deal for them to be the willing subjects today. The themes seemed to be either very ”dressy” or martial arts in style!
Once i started shooting everything went quite smooth. I do have to say the Roundflash is quite easy to shoot with. It gives quite nice results and much like i had in mind when i bought it.
That was a minor problem though but a little annoying from time to time.
I must say that i like those pictures the most myself of the lot i shot and together with the ring flash it gives a nice effect in my opinion.
Overall I’m very satisfied with the job the Roundflash did. Its easy to use, very light and quite easy to fold and bring along.
I can say i recommend it if you want something that give you good results for a good price.
/Over and out..
Ok, so the title suggest something majestic is going to be reviewed , but it is only a bag. For me though the bag is something special, and worthy of a mention and a quick review.
For people who know me or have read the blog at some point they know i only write about things i use on a daily basis or feel is something special.
I heard about the On a bag from reading other peoples reviews, and i was drawn to the look but also the quality people spoke of. Also the passion people had when they described their ”relationship”( yes…us guys also have relationships with bags!) to their On a bags made me very curious and i decided to buy one to begin with.
First of all the price is not for the faint of heart, i have to get that out of the way first. A middle sized bag goes for like 300 Euros. yeh, a pretty hefty sum for a bag you use for a camera, one would think it is sewn together with threads made from diamond dust!
Even so I’m going to say it is worth it, if you find a model that suits your needs. Because these are bags you will grow fond of and that will also get ”better” with age, yes almost like a fine wine.
Especially the leather bags. I started buying the Ona Prince street bag. And the leather Cognac version. It cost me around 400 Euro.
It is a middle sized bag which will fit basically a body with a lens fitted and 2 more smaller primes. Then you can also fit an ipad in the back and some batteries and a phone and smaller gear you need like cleaning equipment etc.
For me it was pretty much what i wanted from it. The look and quality alone made me think it was worth it because like i said it is a bag i can use for a very long time and that i believe i will not get tired with as with some of the other bags i own.
For a trip on town it is a perfect bag if you talk size and shape. What i can say though is that the leather bag is on the heavy side for being a smaller shoulder bag . If that is a concern for you but stil want the same size they have the canvas version is different colors as well. And i actually got one of those as well. They cost slightly less as well. Plus the can take the rain, which the leather version can’t brag about. It will be ok for a light sprinkle, but in heavy rain it will surely be ruined.
Another thing i miss sometimes is some more practical inner pocket with a zipper or something to put smaller gear etc. As it is you have 2 open pockets on the outside which i feel things could fall out if tilted forward.
So also if you are after the most practical and smart bag to carry your gear in, the On a bag is not the most intuitive bag out there. Then Thinktank for example is a better alternative. But the quality and look of the On a at least in my opinion, blows the other bags out of the water. I love the style and it is the only bag i would contemplate going to town with almost as an ordinary designer bag for guys.
So i really recommend this bag. They have some different models to check out and they all are great for different purposes. I might get a smaller leather On a bowery bag as well for my X-T1 in the future.
So thursday evening and some time to kill made me think through what my next gear review should be. I am going to try to be consistent with only reviewing things i have actually used for a while, and actually like using. I will always try to review if from my angle, because the way i see it people having the same style or liking the way i shoot will be mostly helped from these reviews. I will not post a lot of technical details but rather give my impressions of the lens and what i feel are the pros and cons of it.
After reviewing the D700 and also the X-T1 which were both two pieces of equippment that i loved using, i feel that my next gear review will naturally be one of my favorite lenses.
Lets just state the obvious for people that knows the qualities of this lens that it is definitely not for everyone. First of all the price itself will put people off. I was REALLY lucky finding this on an auction and getting it for a price you normally would not find it for anywhere. Then if you actually do find it to a reasonable price there is the very specialized quality of the lens. Originally it was a lens for nighttime photography, and the way it renders lightsources like citylights or stars etc are very unique. It is also the fastest lens out there so it is a joy to use in lowlight in general.
Also the odd 58mm might be something to put people off, it is not a ”normal” length to shoot at, slightly short for portraits and alittle too long for street or architecture etc.
Still it has reached a sort of legendary status as a unicorn of lenses that is rare to find and very good to use. I read so much before i had the chance to shoot with it and knowing its characteristics in beforehand i jumped on the opportunity to try it when i at last got it.
Shooting mainly portraits i was dreaming about how the Bokeh would look on the Noct. And after shooting with it a few times i could right away it had something special none of my other lenses have. The way it renders the background when opened wide is just incredible. I know some people out there does not like the ”swirly” bokeh it gives. I love it. Also the character of the pictures that it produce is also so unique. It is a joy to use.
The look and feel of it is also like no other lens i have. The build is great, heavy and solid like an old tank!
Paired with my Nikon DF it feels like it was made for that lens alone. The pairing is perfect.
Balanced perfectly, and blend very well together, i actually have the black DF so it is not my DF on the picture above.
So what are the cons then you ask?
Well, it is manual of course being an old lens. So if you want something fast or modern it is not for you. Also it is a heavy lens for its size, that is actually a plus for me because i preferr the solid built to the new plasticky things they sell nowadays.
Also i use it strictly for portaiture. And if i need to shoot something else i leave it at home.
Or like a street/portrait lens. I sometimes take only that when leaving for a trip to town for example, the 58 lend itself to being quite versatile since its close to a normal. I would not say its the best architecture lens or the best tele lens or even the best normal lens though, as its very best characteristics comes out when you take portraits and make use of the Bokeh which is spectacular.
Also if you do not like the ”swirly” look of the Bokeh you might not like the lens either.
So why do i love to shoot with this lens?
Like with so many other things you just feel right away if it suits your needs. I can see why many think it is a fluke or a pretty quirky thing to get since of its pricetag and its very special use.
For me it really makes me want to shoot with it. I love using it, which for me in itself is a incredibly important thing. Also since of that very special look it makes the picrures very personal and stand out, and not many tools out there does that now in my opinion. So for that alone it earns a very special place in my photography heart.
If you have a chance to try it out, do it if you think it might be for you.
/Over and out.
So, after owning the Fuji X-T1 now for over a year i feel like i have a pretty good idea of what i like and what i do not like with this camera.
Like with most of my other gear i really like this product or i would not own or use it.
Still i can be objective enough to point out what i really like and what i do not like or what could have been done better in my opinion.
I bought this as a capable travel camera or a decent backup to my D700. What i did not realize when i first bought it was how much i would use it or how much it would become a really competent backup for my D700 on many occasions.
One of the other main reasons for buying it was also the weight which after using the D700 on my travels had become a real issue for me lately. I hated dragging around my D700 with lenses all over the place. It did produce great pictures but sometimes i just could not justify bringing it after all the pain i had to go through dragging it along.
Taking the X-T1 with a few lenses was such a difference and something that really made me happy when i traveled together with it the first time. Secondly the images that comes out of the X-T1 are great. So not only did it spare my body but also produced some great looking pictures and left me completely satisfied with taking that instead of my D700.
After my first vacation with it i started using it more and more back home as well, taking it to trips and using it as a backup for my D700 for real.
I also found that i wanted to pick it up more and more which for me is a very important thing. After all if you do not get inspired by your camera you do not get motivated to take pictures either.
I love the retro feel of it, and the layout of the wheels and buttons feel great using in my opinion. I was a bit worried about the size of it first as the D700 feels great in the hand when shooting. But the X-T1 have avery solid feel to it although smaller and with the lenses which are all amazing it feels really well balanced.
The build quality of it is as good as it gets as well. Weather sealed and just a really solid feel to it.
I mentioned the image quality and lenses. And all i can say it neither disappoints . The image quality is really nice, and rarely do i feel like i have to use my D700 with lenses to be satisfied any longer. The build quality and the images that the Fuji lenses produce are amazing. The lenses i own or have owned are the 18-55 and 10-24 zooms, the 23, 35, 56 primes. And they are ALL great lenses but with the 23 and the 56 being my favorites of the bunch.
So what is the downside with this camera then? Well, many have complained about the AF and the conversion of images using Raw converters etc.
I can begin with the AF and adress that. Sure, the AF is not as snappy and accurate as my D700. When i want to shoot something fast or use it for sports etc i do not use this camera.
Still its perfectly capable of shooting ordinary day to day events without any sort of problem in my opinion. Also now after Fujis new Firmware update ( writing this the 23/5-15) they have adressed some of the issues with the AF and some of the problems might have been solved. Even so its pretty good as it is.
Also about the Raw conversion using Lightroom for example as i do. I do not have any issues. I used to have some with my older Fuji X20. There i did see those problems especially in nature shots or images where i had grass or trees etc. However on the X-T1 i don’t.
The rangefinder is also great in my opinion. And i have no issues with it.
Something else to consider when buying this camera though is the lack of flash. It does not have an inbuilt flash, nor does the Fuji system ( as of now) offer any really good TTL flashes that compares to my CLS system i use for my Nikon. I did get a few Cactus triggers etc but i found it pretty clunky to use them together with my Nikon flashes and if you do you can only go manual and no TTL. I own the Fuji e-42 which has TTL and it is ok as a travel flash to get some fill flash on occasions, or save you in a tight spot. But if i want to do anything studio i am not using my X-T1 for that. So that is also something to consider.
For me using the Nikon DF now also as a backup to my D700, the X-t1 fills a really good spot as a capable fun travel companion and also as a good day to day camera that never disappoints .
I would recommend it to anyone that needs a great small camera that will give you amazing pictures and that you can take with you without breaking your back.
If you have the money to spend for it and the lenses( which are expensive! ) go get it.
So, this will be my first review on my new website. And im going to dedicate that to my ”old friend” the Nikon D700.
First off, i am going to say that i am not a proffesional reviewer or the kind of photographer that is pixel peeping or get stuck too much in the technical domain of photography. My reviews will come from the heart and from my personal experiences and thoughts of the equippment i have used over the years as a photographer.
The D700 was my first ”real” step into the new world of digital photography. I had used compacts as the Lx3 and similar cameras but never really experienced a proper replacement for my analoge Nikon F100 that i loved shooting with.
I did shoot with a Eos D30 at one point and even if that was a pretty good camera the image quality and handling comes nowhere near what the D700 stands for in my opinion.
When i first saw the images that the D700 produced i for the first time started to realize that i could leave my old film gear behind and start a new chapter in my image making.
I loved the character to the images and files. And i also loved the robust solid feeling of the D700. I started building my gearpark around it and still to this day shoot with it as my main body. I have not found a decent replacement for the D700 yet, and as a matter of fact i have not really needed one for the type of photography i do to this day.
Rarely have i found that it lacks anything. Although i can agree with that a higher amount of megapixels would not harm it in anyway. I have done a few assignments were i felt cropping the images or enlarging them in the end abit more would have been a nice possibility. But 99% of the time i have been satisfied with everything it delivers.
I use CLS( creative lighting system) together with the inbuild flash a lot so that for me was a big plus as well when buying it.
And the ability to use the camera as the commander that way gives you so much creative ability.
Besides the D700 i use a Nikon DF and a Fuji X-T1 as backups. But for all my professional work i use the D700 as my main everytime. It is just so reliable.
Thus far none of the camera bodies on the market intrests me or make me want to trade the D700 for it. The AF is just too good, and its lowlight capabilities together with its ergonomics and handling makes it the best body out there still even though its an old camera by todays standards and the lacking in megapixels.
So, for me it will always be the camera that made me go digital and have a special place in the history of my photographic journey…