Snapshot Voyager is about my own personal photography journey. I am always looking to try something new, inquisitive as to how it works, and to the end results I might achieve.

Monday, 30 July 2012

Nikon L35 AW AF

The Nikon L35 series cameras are now starting to become a cult classic due to their excellent fast aperture 35mm lens and all round sturdyness.  I have the AW AF model, its a light duty underwater camera, good for about 10ft underwater but no more (unlike a Nikonos).

I bought this camera about 3 years ago thinking I was going to take it on vacations to the beach or to a lake, or just where ever the weather may be bad.  The one I bought was close to mint and came with the original manual and strap.  But the scary thing is that in this time I haven't even used it once!  There were several opportunities to use it, but each time I had forgotten to bring it.  

Recently a friend of my wife's was looking for an underwater camera, so offered to sell her this one.  I am not sure its the right thing to do, but if I haven't used it once in that time, maybe it's time to say goodbye.

Fuji X100 - St Lawrence Markets, Toronto ON

Saturday, 28 July 2012

Olympic Pride

Although I live in Canada, there's only one country that I support in the Olympics, and that's Australia!

Aussie Aussie Aussie Oi Oi Oi!!!

Fuji X100

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Fuji X-100 - iso 1600 vs iso 3200

I took these night shots of downtown Toronto over St James Park seconds after each other.  I thought I was running out of light at ISO 1600, so turned it up one stop.  One thing I noticed was there is a quite significant increase in noise just by increasing iso just one stop.  Take a look at the shots, but I think I will try to keep the camera at ISO 1600 or below more often.

iso 1600  Fuji X100

iso 3200  Fuji X100

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Nikkor 800mm f5.6 AF-S VR

Nikon has released prototype images of a Nikkor 800mm f5.6 AF-S VR super telephoto lens.  This is the longest focal length that has been made available on any system in quite some time, and seems to be aimed at bird watchers and astro photographers.  

What blows my mind is the multiplier effects when used with a teleconverter or on a DX camera.  This would be 1,600mm with a Nikkor TC20 II or 1,200mm on DX.  With a teleconverter on a DX camera this would be a crazy 2,400mm f11 lens!!  What about on a Nikon V1?  An insane 4,500mm!!

Nikon D90 with Tamron 90mm f2.8 macro

Sunday, 22 July 2012

Sigma 30mm f2.8 - First Impressions

After some thought and looking around, I am now the proud owner of a Sigma 30mm f2.8 for Sony NEX.   

The 4 things I don't like about this lens are:
  1. f2.8 is not really fast enough, especially for indoors
  2. It's quite large when compare to the Sony 16mm f2.8, and only very slightly smaller than my Nikon 50mm f1.4D.
  3. It has weird 46mm filter sizes
  4. It isn't really wide enough for my tastes- my sweet spot is around 23mm for APS-C cameras, or 35mm for full frame cameras.

But I knew all this going into the purchase.  

What I have been rewarded with though is a light, versatile and sharp lens that is very useful.  A couple things I didn't expect were the rattling noises it makes when the camera is moving around and the auto focus is a little slower than I expected. 

However an unexpected blessing was finding 3x 46mm filters in a pile of filters I had - a Skylight 1A, an ND4 and a Polariser; so I'm all set!

Overall, I think this lens will be a great addition, and allow me to get a lot more use out of my NEX5n.

Lobster          Sony NEX 5n with Sigma 30mm f2.8   -   Yonge and Eglinton, Toronto, ON

Deck Chairs        Sony NEX 5n with Sigma 30mm f2.8   -   Yonge and Eglinton, Toronto, ON

Saturday, 21 July 2012

Fuji X100 wide teleconverter

Interestingly, Fuji has just released their WCL-X100 wide angle converter lens for the Fuji X100.  This 0.8x converter turns the X100's 23mm lens into a 18mm lens, equivalent of just under 28mm in Full Frame terminology.  One thing about this converter is that it looks extremely well made and well designed, unlike those cheap and nasty converters that every small New York photo shop seems to want to sell you.  It features multicoating (Super Ebc in Fuji speak), has four elements in three groups for proper correction and sharpness and is meant to be extremely well made.  This converter attaches by screwing into the 49mm filter thread.

At $349, it sure isn't cheap, though compared to other high end converters such as Nikon's TC-20 II 2x teleconverter, it is priced similarly.

Early reviews suggest that the image quality is excellent, almost as good as the 23mm lens on its own.  There's meant to be some barrel distortion that is corrected when accessing the appropriate setting on the camera, which I believe requires the latest firmware; but that's about it.

The major issue that I see is that 28mm is a bit close to 35mm in focal length.  Maybe it would have been better to go to a 0.7x converter which would mean a focal length of approx 15.5mm, or a full frame equivalent of just under 24mm.  Of course this would result in more design challenges, and therefore purchase expense, to retain the top notch quality that Fuji was requiring.

I must also say that on my Nikon SLRs, the further I move away from 35-50mm focal length range, the less I use the lens.  My fisheye and ultra wideangles don't get much use, and I sold my 80-400mm for lack of use.  So, maybe I would get more use out of a 0.8x converter than a 0.7x converter.