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.

Sunday, 28 April 2013

Nikon D3000 test

Recently I purchased a Nikon D3000 that had an intermittent fault for a very good price.  The camera occasionally says "Auto Exposure Error", but I found it would fix itself by taking a shot in manual mode and moving back the dial.  Otherwise it seems to work fine.

Though I don't intend to keep it, I did decide to try it out. Compared to newer, more expensive cameras, the D3000 doesn't handle low light that well, but under good light it works fine.  ISO 1600 is the maximum light sensitivity, very low by today's standards; but even that really isn't that usable. 
Also, with a good lens, it shines.  I tried out a few lenses, including the Sigma 35mm f1.4, and the results with this lens were very, very good.

So would I recommend the D3000?  Not really.  I'd save up some extra cash and try to get the D5100 with the excellent 16MP sensor.

Harold the Camel - Nikon D3000 with Sigma 35mm f1.4

Thursday, 25 April 2013

Firmware updates

If there is one thing I find annoying it is firmware upgrades.  Today I had a few minutes so I decided to make an effort to do it.  Updating the Fuji and the Nikon D600 is not too bad.  Essentially all you have to do is download a file onto a blank memory card and put it in the camera.  The D600 has a couple of tricks that aren't obvious, but it is OK.   

 The Sony NEX procedure is long and tedious.  Unlike the other two, you need to plug the camera into a USB and follow the instructions.  While it does show you step by step, it is quite an involved process, which for me was delayed a couple hours by a moderately depleted battery that the process would not accept.             

Sony NEX 5n with Minolta Chiyoko 13.5cm f4

Monday, 22 April 2013

Sigma 18-35mm f1.8 - Ultra fast zoom

To be honest, this is one of the most exciting lenses I have seen come out in a while, and in fact I believe it is the fastest zoom lens ever made for APS-C or 35mm lenses.  The specs are incredibly impressive - constant f1.8 throughout the zoom range.  It is quite a large lens, from photos it seems the same or larger than a Nikon 17-55mm f2.8, and I am very interested to see what the price will be.  I'm betting it will be around $1000.

The only thing that remains to be seen is what the performance will be like, and if the recent Sigma 35mm f1.4 is anything to go by, it will be a knock out.  As a pairing to something like the Nikon D7100, it would be absolutely amazing.

McEwan Groceries - Don Mill Shops - Sony NEX5n with Sigma 19mm f2.8

Friday, 19 April 2013

Canon 6D - Like night vision

The new Canon 6D, which in most respects is very similar to the Nikon D600, has one thing going for it that, in my books, makes it a potential knockout.  Its the super clean very high ISO images, that really do it for me.  Above 12,800 ISO, the 6D is at least 1, probably 2 stops better than the D600; and that is very significant and impressive.

Sony NEX 5n with Sigma 19mm f2.8

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Fisker - You're done

A few nights ago I went to the Shoppers DrugMart near us, and as I had my camera, I decided to go for a wander in the Don Mill outdoor mall.  It's a pretty cool, if not uppity and expensive shopping experience; but as I hadn't been there for a while, I noticed Fisker had a showroom there.  Certainly a good spot, given the Bridle Path is close by, but the real problem is with Fisker it's self.

Fisker was started by the well known car designer Henri Fisker, who decided to design a voluptuous EV sedan.  Except it wasn't.  The Fisker Karma is more like a range extended EV - ie it uses a petrol motor when the battery power depletes.  Unfortunately its pretty heavy, so fuel consumption on the petrol motor wasn't great, nor was performance.  The whole car was kinda half baked, resulting in fires and recalls.  

Then their major battery supplier went bankrupt.  Then 300 Karmas got wiped out by Hurricane Sandy.  Then the company started running into trouble, their US government loan was frozen and their contract assembler, Valmet in Finland, stopped production last summer.

The latest news is that Henri Fisker has been asked to leave, and the company is very close to bankruptcy.  So, pretty sure this store won't be around much longer.

Fisker store - Sony NEX5n with Sigma 19mm f2.8