View Full Version : To all those who have been in my shoes

09-12-2019, 09:58 AM
Greetings all!

It has been a long time. Don't worry if you don't recognize me. Its been so long since I posted on here that even i cant remember my old account. But it is good to be back. Now, I have a question that I want to direct towards a certain group of photographers. And, please do forgive me if I sound rather elitist. It is simply that I want the opinion from a specific group of people and not an insult towards anyone's experience or knowledge. All feedback is welcome, however, I am looking for advice on a topic I hope others have conquered. Specifically I am looking for photographers who have been at it for probably 10 to 15 years or more.

But first, one or two things about me. I shoot canon but we are in an open relationship. Currently using the 5d mk iii, and some basic cheap lenses (40mm, 14mm, etc) and an old 100-400 L lens I use as my fav lens. If you ever need to clarify, assume I don't have the best one of whatever I say. that's probably quicker :). I do creative work on individual basis, personal interest, and outdoor stuff but seldom landscapes. My method of travel is 99.8% biking the trails whether it be 10 km or 110 km, and I carry all my gear in panniers or backpacks. It is heavy kit and I haven't yet built something to make it easy to bike and shoot quickly, or at all really for my purposes. I do like shooting wildlife when the opportunity presents itself. I also sometimes speak in run on sentences, and sometimes is spelled with quotation marks.


I have been doing this a long time and I want to get a small camera as a good secondary. I have looked around a lot but the options always just seem to miss the mark. I want to be able to carry something around the is small and light enough to work while on the move, so I don't have to unpack or whatever else. I still want my good kit with me, but more so as a destination camera and less of an on route camera. I am not looking for a dslr because if I had to get another dslr I would just invest in new lenses. That is actually an option I have looked into before, but i keep running into this cyclical problem. Which is thus:

I wanted a superzoom bridge to capture far off animals, but all the ones I have seen seem to have issues with IQ, can't shoot raw, have itty bitty phone sensors, suck in low light, etc. The sx70 for instance shoots raw, has exactly the kind of superzoom I want, affordable, but has a stupid sensor and garbage low light and IQ issues.

So I decided to look in compact cameras instead as I once owned a G7 back in the day, and loved the little guy. Built like a little tank and could close focus up to 1cm for great little macro practice. Shot raw, manual functions, loved it as a secondary. So I looked into the G7 X mk ii and iii. The iii is a little more than I want to spend but if it is the right beast then I will get it, but it feels limited. It makes me wonder if the 24-100 range is good enough for what I want to do with it (like, will it inspire me? is it the game changer im looking for? I want a toy to play with some new things without pulling a muscle). It seems pretty good, and has good macro, IQ, and manual/raw/etc from what I have read. I don't get to have my superzoom and eat it too, which is kind of what started those whole search, but it does have macro far better than I can achieve with my current lens line up. But macro will give me a new place to play for a while and be creative, and the normal to telephoto range fills in a gap I haven't bothered filling back up for years as I only have my 40mm and lost my 85mm to theft a while back.

But now I am looking at it like a camera for close up stuff, which makes sense if it is the alternative to the superzoom. But if I am just going to get a small camera for macro stuff+, why not just get a great macro lens? Well, because that puts me back at square one. heavy camera. heavy gear. And most macro lenses I know of are pretty much usually just good at that (I had my eye on the ef 100 f2.8 L for a decent price), and I still need to carry my camera around and figure out the problem of gear and access, etc. And while I want to expand and play, I don't really want to get stuck in a very specific niche place that cant let me do multiple things. So that's why I am stuck. I cant even figure out what I want (compact, bridge, or lens) to be able to figure out what I want (G7 variation? Sony's beast bridge? A 1.2 L lens? They all have specific pros, but are there two or three more pros?).

That is why I wanted to ask the people who have been at it a while. Generally they are older, more season and have probably encountered issues similar in the past. I remember when I started people always mentioned about heavy gear and I was the young one going pfft. Now I am telling people to watch out for heavy gear. Its like hiking. You look at hiking packs that weigh less than a pound difference, and when you read reviews they might boast that this is half a pound lighter. What is half a pound, an amateur might ask, whereas a pro/veteran might know the weight and location of everything in their pack.

Ideally, I wanted a superzoom but I want at least decent IQ, and wanted more than 400mm. I have 400mm as it stands (and technically 800mm with the extender mk ii if I stop caring about, you know, actually having a crisp image) so I don't want to buy what i already have. And I didn't want to buy new glass because that doesn't fix the first problem, but there doesn't feel like much sense in buying a compact or bridge for close up to 100mm if that can only do limited stuff, unless the IQ/capabilities of it make it worth it.

This is the meat of my dilemma. All feedback, honestly, is appreciated. Any clarification I can give, I will. But that said, I more or less said what I am looking for and what to do with it. A sort of idea but nothing formed enough to pick a direction, and destinations and options that just don't have enough pull to sway me in any direction. I guess I am looking for something similar to my big lens. Something that I know what it can do before i got it, and then figure out what i can do with its capabilities, rather than say I want this thing to do this. I kind of want to learn along with it and fold it into what I do. Or maybe I should just replace the 100-400 Lbs lens.

I don't know.

Thank you if you made it this far and extra appreciation if you took the time to help.

Thank you again

(final note, i don't do any online, wi-fi, social media, whatever stuff. i want my camera to be a camera and am not afraid to use buttons instead of touchscreens and use my camera as a camera and basically never as a video recorder. Why cant i find just a camera that's a camera haha. I was reading reviews that dumped on cameras if they didn't have 4k.... I just want to capture the beauty of the world in images, not movies. /sigh)


09-13-2019, 01:19 PM
Welcome back!

Personally....for most people without joint pains - who already have an investment in lenses.... i recommend DSLrs.
They are more versatile, WAY better value and overall and have larger sensors than their mirrorless counterparts....I see no quality boost in mirrorless....
It's just too expensive to make the switch without any good reason to make the switch.... Once you start adding Zooms...the weight difference is negligible... Those high end sony's are several thousand of dollar with lenses...

If you want to buy any small non dslr camera as an additional camera for convenience for a specific reason...like a g7...that's cool (I use something similar for specific non critical shooting) - it's way less versatile....so it can do 1 or 2 things well....versus a DSLR... which does everything well.
that's my 2 cents...hope it may help