4.04.2014

Family portrait of Kirk's Zany Panasonic Collection.

From left to right: GH3 with an Olympus Pen FT 40mm f1.4 (speedy, sharp and competent. My most used video interview lens, so far...). Olympus Pen FT 50-90mm f3.5 zoom (for those times when you need a softer, more, ahem, ethereal look to your photos...reading between the lines...). A G6 with an Olympus Pen FT 25mm f2.8 (perfect for manual focus pulls in video). The Olympus flash (same as the Panasonic flash...). Behind the flash is the Panasonic/Leica 25mm f1.4 ( a darling lens with happy performance). To the front again, the Olympus Pen FT 60mm 1.5 which is wickedly sharp from f2.5 on down and at 2.5 gives one just the right amount of focus control for wonderful portraits...). Behind it is the new, Panasonic 12-35mm f2.8 and right next to it is its companion lens, the 35-100mm f2.8.  Hanging out in front of the 35-100mm f2.8 is yet another Olympus Pen FT lens, the 38mm 1.8. Moving over on to the right is another GH3 sporting the ultra light 45-150mm 4.0 to 5.6 lens and on the far right of the frame are two of the new style kit 14-42mm lenses, one in black and one in silver. 

A fun day. I finally rounded out the m4:3 system in preparation of the arrival of the GH4. I was up early walking the dog and thinking about my typical all or nothing and take no prisoners approach to changing camera systems and re-thinking my whole knee jerk impulse to banish my Sony full frame gear. Once the dog and I got back to the house I went out to the studio and looked at the pile of stuff on the floor and remembered Chad's comment on the site yesterday. I decided to keep a few bits and pieces of the Sony collection aside. It was an easy decision when it came to a99 versus a850. The a99 went right into the going away box. Not because it isn't a superb imaging camera but because it's a mediocre video camera and that was one of the reasons I first bought it. The a850 on the other hand does what it is supposed to do very well....

I also kept back the Sigma 70mm macro lens because I honestly feel that it's one of the sharpest lenses I have ever owned and I used it, in conjunction with the a850, to do a recent job for a museum that turned out very, very well. They are a good team. I didn't want to break up the team. And I intend to use the 70mm with an adapter on the m4:3 stuff.

Another survivor is the tiny Sony 24-105mm f3.5-4.5 which is a rather good performer for the size and price. I kept it as an all around lens and a slow substitute for a 50mm lens. Finally, I couldn't bear to give up the Sony 85mm f2.8. It's a cheap lens to begin with and I didn't think I'd get much in resale so I kept it around for those moments of weakness when I've temporarily decided that nothing will do but a full frame, 85mm portrait. Four great batteries and done.

I bought my two new lenses at Precision-Camera.com and was delighted to find that their prices were as good (or better) than the prices from Amazon and B&H and Precision-Camera.com threw in free shipping from the front counter to my car. In all seriousness it is nice to inspect each lens before accepting it. I've gotten repacked lenses and lenses that came in damaged packing from other sources so it's nice to be certain before you close the transaction.

I'm shooting tests this weekend. I'll let you know how it all pans out.... Now, what to do with those two Pentax K-01's???? That's next. 

7 comments:

Frank Grygier said...

OH NOOO..Not the little Pentax too!

Gordon R. Brown said...

Where's the K-01 family portrait?

Claire said...

Hmm, I do sincererly hope m4/3 keeps you happy Kirk, though in my heart of heart, I very much doubt it. But let's be positive and supportive, it's a beautiful collection you have there, and it's not the gear that matters, it's how you use it. Have fun !

Anonymous said...

Hmm... maybe I should have given you 16 hours instead of 16 months. ;-)

But with the obligatory "we-told-you-so" pun aside, sounds like a plan many of us might have done, too.

I've still got one 'exotic' dSLR, and that one dSLR does just one thing, good photos. It's got the usual PASM and the continuous/single shot dials and that's it. It may no longer have much resale value, anyway, so I'll probably keep it for the occasional special shoots.

The rest of the cameras are all mirrorless. One with a fixed lens for video and travel, one workhorse CSC that can do both stills and video. That one is likely to be upgraded soon, though, mostly for better video capabilities. It'll be hard to let go of it, because it's quirky and comfortable. But unfortunately only partially adequate for my needs today.

As for the question what do do with the K-01, well, in case it's the yellow or blue one, suppose it has more entertainment and future collectable value than resale value today, so...

Clutter or not, every man needs his toys. Women have their shoes and accessories, men have their gadgets. The tools for the job are a slightly different matter.

Mike said...

Hey Kirk, sounds like our conversation at PhotoExpo had an impact. As I mentioned then, I went "all in" on the GH3's last May as my working cameras for my job as a photographer at a university. After 137,000 frames on two bodies, haven't looked back at the FF DSLR world even once.

I finally have a pro spec tool that handles the rigors of 500 assignments per year with ease, and doesn't break my back, or the bank. It does everything well, and has made making images under some of the most trying of circumstances, and lots of them, fun again.

Kirk Tuck said...

Mike, that was a turning point for me as well. I've been using the GH3s for more and more stuff and the last two videos were the final shove. It's a like a lightbulb clicked on and said, "Right tool for two different kinds of work."

Alf said...

There is a nice lens missed in your collection: the little 20mm Panasonic. Have you tried it?