Thursday, March 21, 2013

D7100 in stock, D7000 savings

The Nikon D7100 is now finding it's way into UK dealers, at the time of writing, Wex had it in stock.

Note though that they also have D7000 for £642, and Nikon are offering £100 cashback, giving a net price of £542. That's a great deal.

It's also about half the cost of the D7100, IMHO it's difficult to find a compelling reason to spend twice as much, unless you need to print A3 or bigger.

Of course soon we will start to see some authoritative in-depth reviews, and really begin to understand the impact of the omission of a lowpass filter, at which point I might change my opinion!

Thursday, March 07, 2013

Nikon 80-400mm AF-S

At long last, the venerable 80-400 AF-D gets an update....ouch look at that UK price though! Wex have it listed for pre-order at a shade under £2500!

Even though the price will soften, it probably still makes it worth looking at the 70-200mm f/2.8 VR II as an option - after all a 70-200 and a D7100 are in the same ball park, price wise, as the 80-400. You would still get the equivalent of a 140-400mm lens using the 15Mp 2x mode.

Add to this that you'll be able to shoot 2 stops faster, i.e. brighter viewfinder, more subject isolation, potentially better results with a teleconvertor, faster AF, as well as a higher shutter speed (remember VR doesn't help you avoid subject motion blur).

Personally, I can't see much reason to buy the more expensive lens - unless you really, really need lots of reach and will combine it with a D7100 to give a very portable 160-800/5.6 equivalent!

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Focus On Imaging 2013

It's been time for my almost-annual trek to the NEC for Focus On Imaging, Britains' premier photo geek-fest.

And it really is a geek-fest, judging by the propensity for grey hair, no hair and/or a paunch in the predominantly male crowd outside (I count myself as having 2 of the 3!). But one thing I've never understood though is why people take their cameras and even tripods to this show?

Sorry, I just don't get it, unless just possibly you're hoping to put your body onto a lens you're thinking of buying in order to take some test shots? Even then, you don't need the camera dangling round your neck like some grotesque bit of male jewellery!

Anyway, enough of my whinging. I don't spend hours trawling round and getting into conversations with salespeople about thing's I've no interest in buying, I just home in on the half-dozen or so things I might be interested in.

So here's my list of what I personally found interesting and some observations from this years show:
  • Paramo are now distributing F-Stop camera bags. Long story short is some pretty well-designed and made rucksacks with separate Internal Camera Units (ICU) available in various sizes, allowing you to customise your bag depending on how much photographic versus hiking gear you want to carry. I already have some good rucksacks, but the ICUs look interesting and could fit in one of these.
  • Paramo also had the £130 Halcon Traveller jacket. I'm a big fan of the full-fat Halcon jacket, but this is a different beast, lighter, not waterproof (probably OK in a shower though, as it should dry quikly), but it does inherit the capacious pockets of it's big brother. It could almost be fashionable to, just may be not in green though!
  • Gitzo - always like to look at this stand as it's a rare opportunity to see most of the line-up in one place. Shocked though that the tripod I bought just 3 years ago seems to have gone up by nearly 50%!
  • Elinchrom - I'm not a big user of studio lights, but the new D-Lite RX Ones are tiny and feel robust as well as being compatible with loads of accessories, including the Skyport wireless transmitter. If you can live with the 100Ws power then they represent superb value.
  • No D7100 brochures on the Nikon stand - why?
  • The Focus On Imaging iPad app resolutely stuck on the countdown page (at around 9 days!) as I queued to go in, so my hopes of going 'paper-free' were thwarted as I couldn't access the online floorplan (this despite trying ee's 3G and 4G networks). The app got removed before I got in the hall.

Monday, March 04, 2013


As I mentioned in my previous post, I had a quote in to part exchange my D7000 for a D7100. It equates to depreciation of roughly £350 for each of the years that I've owned the older camera. Of course it's only realised if I actually go through with the deal.

I wonder though, how many of us would have spent £350/year on 35mm film and processing, prior to the rise of the DSLR in the last decade?

Of course, back then we bought a film SLR and usually kept that for decades to, so depreciation wasn't really an issue!

And, others will benefit by finding a good used D7000 will soon be available at very reasonable prices - they're already going on ebay for c£500.