Rusty shutters #12.

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Leica D-Lux 4.

June 2009.

I saw a picture of this camera in Kelly Castro’s Flickr stream, with the 24mm viewfinder. I had to have it. So cool.

And even though it’s a Leica branded clone of Panasonic’s Lumix LX-3, it’s still the only Leica I’m likely to own.

I had to add the Franiec grip. As much as I like the simplicity of design, without the grip it was hard to hold. And I also purchased that viewfinder at the same time.

It’s a great little camera with awesome macro capability. Leica glass, too. Duh.

It was my first digital camera that had a switch on the lens barrel for image size settings, and though it couldn’t shoot 1:1 when I purchased it, a firmware upgrade made that possible through the menu system.

I still use this little guy.

Resolution: 10.1 megapixels
Max image size – 3648 x 2736
Display: 3in fixed LCD @ 460,000 pixels
Zoom: 4x digital
ISO: Auto, 80, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200
Shutter Speeds: 60 sec – 1/2000 sec
Aperture: ƒ/2
Focal Length: 24-60mm
Macro: .4in
Metering: Multi, center-weighted, spot
Dimensions: 4.3in x 2.3in x 1.1in
Weight: 8 oz.
Power: Lithium Ion rechargeable battery
Memory card: SD/SDHC

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Rusty shutters #11.

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Nikon Coolpix P300.

March 2011.

One of my all-time favorite cameras is the original Nikon One•Touch 35mm ƒ/2.8, compact autofocus. We got ours brand new back in the 80s and it lasted well into the 90s before it died. It was a simple, easy to use camera that made great pictures. I was heartbroken when it stopped working.

The Nikon Coolpix P300 has that same simple feel. I was drawn to it because it’s such a basic little pocket camera. Super easy to use, feels good in the hand, and has a small, but useful, built-in finger grip on the front and a thumb grip on the back. The LCD display fills the back of the camera and controls are minimal.

I shoot in aperture-priority mode, and ƒ-stops are easy to change using the rotary multi-selector on the back of the camera.

This little point and shoot produces really great images.

Resolution: 12 megapixels
Max image size – 4000 x 3000
Display: 3in LCD @ 921,000 pixels
Zoom: 4x digital
ISO: Auto, 160, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 2000, 3200
Shutter Speeds: 8 sec – 1/2000 sec
Aperture: ƒ/1.8-4.9
Focal Length: 24-100mm
Macro: 1.2in
Metering: center-weighted, multi-segment
Dimensions: 4.1in x 2.3in x 1.3in
Weight: 6.7 oz
Power: Rechargeable Li-ion Battery (EN-EL12)
Memory card: SD/SDHC/SDXC

Plot twist.

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I did not see that coming.

The LX100 saga is finally over.

I got an email form Panasonic letting me know that not only did my LX100 need a sensor cleaning, but that the lens was bad, too.

I called to authorize the work and give them my credit card info. I was told that, in all, it would cost roughly $375 US to repair and ship back to me. Bummer. A lot more than I’d anticipated.

Then I was told I had the option to purchase a refurbed LX100 for less than $200. Yay. Let’s do that. Happy boy.

About 10 minutes after I hung up I got a call from the agent that’d helped me apologizing because it turns that they’re fresh out of refurbished LX100s. Bummer.

At this point my only other option was to purchase a new one for a little more than $100 over the cost of repairs.

The get to keep my old LX100.

I ran all this by the CFO of Morris Enterprises, and she approved the expenditure. The new camera arrived today. So clean!

Here’s hoping I get at least 4 years use out of it!

 

 

Use what you have.

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Spot on.

I’m not quite ready to pull the trigger on a full-blown spot meter.

The model I’m interested in, the Minolta Spot Meter F, has a price range of roughly $100-$300 US on eBay depending on condition, seller, and shipping.

I spotted (!) another option on eBay. It’s the Minolta Viewfinder II 10 Degree Spot attachment for their Minolta Auto Meter IV F. It just so happens that I have one of those little gems. The Auto Meter IV has been in my kit for many a year.

The attachment goes for around $50. I figured it’d be a good investment and learning tool. There were enough decent reviews in forums to convince me to give it a try and since the cost was reasonable, I went for it.

I’ll look into a Spot Meter F again next year, but for now I think this attachment will be useful.

I’ll be loading up the 4×5 film holders with Fomopan 100.

I’m looking forward to getting out with the Shen Hao.

Rusty shutters #10.

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Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1.

December 2009.

This camera was a game changer for me.

My first mirrorless, it’s a super-nifty little Micro Four Thirds camera and along with the 20mm ƒ/1.7 lens, I made bunches of nice images with this little gem.

I first heard of this camera through Craig Mod’s blog post titled “GF1 Fieldtest – 16 Days in the Himalayas.” His detailed review, high praise, and the gorgeous photos he shared were all hard to ignore.

The first time I held one and fiddled with it was early December 2009 while attending a photo meet-up in Santa Clara, at the coffee shop across El Camino Real from Santa Clara University’s Loyola Hall.

One of the folks attending brought along his recently acquired GF1/20mm ƒ/1.7 and was kind enough to let me hold it and play with it a bit.

The minute I pressed the shutter release I was hooked – it made a convincing click-thunk sound – you knew you’d just made a picture.

The GF1 is so cool. Small, 12 megapixels, used interchangeable Panasonic and Olympus lenses, quick auto-focus, a 3″ display, and an external viewfinder could be added.

I’ve even attached a Lensbaby Composer Pro/Sweet 35, the Pentax 25mm ƒ/1.4 CCTV, and the Wanderlust Pinwide. Pictured is the Panasonic 14mm ƒ/2.5, a nice street lens.

By Christmas I had one of my own, along with the 20mm ƒ1.7 and the EVF.

Some of my fave portraits were made with this little guy and I’ve shot a lot of cool cars and beautiful flowers with it, too.

Resolution: 12.1 megapixels
Max image size – 4000 x 3000
Display: Fixed 3in LCD @ 460,000 pixels
ISO: Auto, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200
Shutter Speeds: 60 sec – 1/4000 sec
Metering: Multi-segment, center-weighted, spot
Dimensions WHD: 4.69in x 2.8in x 1.43in
Weight: 13.58 oz
Power: Lithium-ion rechargeable battery
Memory card: SD/SDHC/MMC

My desk.

The utter chaos that is my desk

Utter chaos.

Sometimes more, sometimes less, but without a doubt, always a mess.

1 > Olympus Stylus XZ-2 & Sony RX100III battery chargers
2 > An unexposed roll of 35mm Ilford XP2 Super 400 I pulled out of an old Canon SLR
3 > Fuel
4 > An unopened box of Fomapan 100 4×5 film (soon!)
5 > iPhone 8
6 > Blood pressure log & calendar
7 > Zero Image 6×9 pinhole camera
8 > Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1
9 > Western Digital 320GB external USB powered hard drive
10 > Apple Mac Mini, 2012 vintage (16GB RAM)
11 > Nikon P300 point and shoot
12 > A pair of Newer Technology 2TB hard drives
13 > 8Banners pinhole camera
14 > Apple Magic Mouse
15 > Nikon One•Touch Zoom90 AF Quartz Date 35mm camera
16 > Thingyfy Pinhole Pro S11 pinhole cap
17 > Olympus M.Zuiko 15mm f8.0 body cap lens
18 > Sekonic Flashmate L-308S light meter
19 > Minolta XG-1 w/Rokkor MD Rokkor-X 28mm ƒ/2.8

There are a few other things that’re just out of view, like an ATT wireless router, a Kodak instant photo from 1984 of my future wife and I (35 years this month), 2 Fuji FP100c prints from the Shen Hao, a 1970 nickle, an ‘R’ scrabble tile, a blue mini-armadillo toy, an Ilford 120 Pan F Plus ‘unexposed’ paper band, a Minolta lens cap and body cap, a Lumix lens cap and body cap, my Epson V500 scanner with a bunch of stuff stacked neatly on top of it, another stack of external drives, an aging Drobo, a really old Mickey Mouse coffee cup that has a Tokina 28-108mm ƒ/3.5 Minolta mount lens in it, an Apple USB Super Drive, an old Sekonic Twinmate L-208 light meter in its storage bag, and those are really nice Bose Companion 2 Series III speakers flanking a pair of ViewSonic LED monitors.

Wild.

Rusty shutters #9.

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Hasselblad 500C/M.

May 2006.

I bought this camera, and the accompanying Zeiss Sonnar 1:4 150mm T*, from my neighbor at the time. Along with it came an early edition of Ernst Wildi’s The Hasselblad Manual and a healthy stack of Hassy promotional material. I still have all of it.

I added the #10 extension tube, the 80mm ƒ/2.8 Planar lens (plus the plastic Hassy branded bay 50 lens hood), and the more modern looking PM45 prism viewfinder.

The camera is pristine. No flaws whatsoever. I keep it in its own Domke bag for protection.

The camera’s distinctive slap sound at shutter release is one of my favorite things about this shooter.

I use the 80mm lens most. It makes amazing photographs.

Film type: 120
Film back: A12
Viewfinder: prism
Winding Mechanism: manual crank
Body construction: aluminum alloy
Dimensions: 4.7in x 6.8in x 6.8in