Just some stuff about photography

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Sell out!

in GAS , Sunday, August 31, 2014

It’s time for a bit of a clear out here at the Snowhenge World Observation Bunker & Control Center, and before all this stuff goes on eBay, I’m offering it here, as well as on several forums.  Please note, I am not, as the interwebbies put it, “jumping ship”, I’m still an Olympus user (both 4/3 and m4/3), just having a bit of a rationalisation, and hopefully raising the funds for a little device I have my eye on…

Please either email me directly, or in the comments here, if you have any suggestions. I might be open to a certain degree of bargaining. Or not. All prices include an estimated $50 for insured delivery via SwissPost / EMS, which, frankly, is probably cutting my own throat.

So, here we go.

Item 1. Olympus E-5/E-3 mega-set

SOLD
Olympus E-5, 7667 shutter actuations
with:

Olympus E-3, 15339 shutter actuations
HLD-4 Grip / Battery Holder with AA-battery insert and Acratech Arca Swiss-compatible plate
Acratech Arca Swiss-compatible plate for E-5
BCM-5 Charger
4 BLM-5 Batteries
BCM-2 Charger
5 BLM-1 Batteries
RM-CB1 Remote cable
FL-36 Flash
2 8Gb Sandisk CF cards

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I am the original owner of all items. All come with original Olympus packaging. These cameras have been well looked after, but have been used, not kept on a shelf, so they have some light signs of wear. However both are in full working order and the screens have no significant blemishes. The E-3 is missing it’s remote socket cover. All items were bought in Switzerland as official Swiss imports and therefore have manuals in German, French & Italian. English and other language versions are available on Olympus web sites.

Asking price is $975. This includes insured delivery to most of the world.SOLD

Item 2. Olympus E-400 Twin Lens kit

Olympus E-400, 3447 shutter actuations
Olympus magnifying eyepiece
Zuiko ZD 14-42ED lens
Zuiko ZD 40-150ED lens
battery, manuals and accessories.

This is the last Kodak CCD Olympus DSLR, and was only sold in Europe. Due to it’s size it was also described by the press as a “digital OM”, well before the OM-D series was thought up.  It is about the same body size as an OM-D EM-1. The camera is in full working order, but the back screen is a bit scuffed. The original lens cap for the 40-150 left to seek it’s fortune elsewhere some time ago, and is replaced with a generic cap.

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I took this camera out for a nostalgic stroll a while back, and wrote a note on my experiences.

Asking price is $250. This includes insured delivery to most of the world.

Item 3. Olympus Digital Zuiko ZD 7-14mm f4.0 lens

SOLD

This ultra-wide zoom lens for Olympus Four-Thirds cameras (and m43 via adaptor) is of exceptional optical quality. I am the original owner. It is used, but in very good condition, with no blemishes to the glass or body. Complete with original front and back lens caps, soft pouch, and original packaging.

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Asking price is $1050. This includes insured delivery to most of the world.SOLD

Item 4. Olympus Digital Zuiko ZD 150mm f2.0 lens

SOLD

This f2.0 fixed focal telephoto for Olympus Four-Thirds cameras (and m43 via adaptor) is rated by many as one of the finest SLR lenses ever produced. So why am I selling it? Well, despite the fact that it really is fabulous, mainly because the focal length doesn’t really suit me.  I am the original owner, however it was bought direct from Olympus as a refurbished demo item, and does not come in the original box. It is used, but in very good condition, with no blemishes to the glass or body. Complete with original front and back lens caps, lens hood and Olympus semi-rigid carrying case.

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You can see a recent shot from this lens here, in this case used on an mFT Olympus E-P3 camera with manual focus.

Asking price is $1550. This includes insured delivery to most of the world.SOLD

Item 5. Panasonic LEICA DG SUMMILUX 25mm / F1.4 ASPH lens for micro Four Thirds

An excellent, fast portrait lens for the mFT system. Although it is indeed excellent, I don’t use it very much, and therefore I’ve decided to sell it. It is used, but in very good condition, with no blemishes to the glass or body. Complete with original front and back lens caps, hood, pouch, and original packaging.

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Asking price is $350. This includes insured delivery to most of the world.

Item 6. Lomography Belair 612 kit, with Belairgon 114mm lens.

The Belair 612 is a medium format camera which can produced 6x6, 6x9 or 6x12 output. It’s an interesting concept and some people love it, but it doesn’t quite fit in with my aims, so I’m selling it.  The sale includes the Zenit-built Belairgon 114mm glass lens, which I also discussed.  The camera kit and lens are sold in their original packaging with all accessories. Also included are 4 rolls of spare Lomography 120 film.

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I wrote several posts on my experiences of the Belair 612 and Belairgon lens.

Asking price is $250. This includes insured delivery to most of the world.

 

And finally, if anybody in the Olympus community is paying attention, if you re-blog, or twitter, or FB this and let me know, then I will put your name in the hat for an absolutely free Olympus E-System Angle Finder (for E-1, E-300, E-330, E-400 and possibly other bodies - not E-3, E-30 or E-5, anyway they don’t need it).  Interested ? Just spread the word, and leave a link in the comments here.

Posted in category "GAS" on Sunday, August 31, 2014 at 03:03 PM

35mm

in Photography , Sunday, April 27, 2014

My rate of photographic gear acquisition has slowed down quite drastically over the past couple of years. This is partly due to gear fatigue, partly due to finding other ways to spend money, but mainly because photographic technology has arrived a such a level of adequacy that frankly, new cameras make very little difference, however much they get trumpeted as the New Messiah. Certainly there are some exceptions, where the technology is different enough that it might have photographic potential. A good example being Sigma’s recent cameras. But otherwise we’re really in a period of small incremental changes, and to my mind at least the biggest potential is making cameras more intuitive and enjoyable to use.  So really my gear lust has turned more and more towards lenses, and over the last 18 months I’ve acquired two new ones, the Panasonic Lumix 14mm (28mm equivalent) and the Olympus M.Zuiko 17mm f1.8 (35mm equivalent). The 17mm is a fairly recent newcomer, and one I hesitated over for many months. According to the rent-an-experts on the various inter web fora, it’s a truly dreadful lens, the production of which is little short of original sin. According to expert brick wall photographers it’s terribly soft at the corners and has so many things wrong with it that a combination of couldn’t rescue it. Then again, looking at the actual photos of real things posted by Olympus blogger Robin Wong it’s rather nice.

A lot of my very early photography was done at 35mm, mainly because that’s what cameras came with in those days, if not 50mm.  So film compacts like the Minox ML and Olympus XA, both of which I resurrected last year, unconsciously trained me to use 35mm. And of course, many consider 35mm to be the classic “street” focal length. And yet in the digital era, I’ve never had a 35mm prime lens. Somewhat discouraged by various people claiming it is a difficult focal length to use, especially if you like 28mm - which I do, sometimes - I decided the best thing was to try fixing the Olympus 14-42 “kit” zoom at 17mm and seeing how that worked for me. Well, it turned out very well, so I decided I’d like to have a “real” 17mm lens.  Olympus actually make two, an f/2.8 “pancake”, which gets even worse reviews (yeah, whatever), and the newer f/1.8 with the “clutch” manual focus system.  After a lot of months of hesitation, I sold the Lumix 20mm (very highly rated but never really worked for me), and I eventually decided to go for the f/1.8, in black. And it’s been pretty much glued to my Olympus E-P3 ever since.  It’s a really nice lens to use. The clutch system is much more effective on this lens than on the 12mm, which doesn’t really need it.  The wide aperture is great for low light, and also gives a quite adequate level of depth of field control, unless you’re an absolute fanatic about having about 1mm of the field in focus. Is it “soft at the corners” ? Does it show chromatic aberration in high contrast ? I have no idea - certainly if it does it doesn’t detract from any prints I’ve made. I guess if I zoom in on-screen at 200% I might find some lack of perfection, but it won’t keep me awake at night.  It’s just a very enjoyable and rewarding lens to use, and for me that’s quite enough to justify buying it.

Here are a few samples:

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Bellinzona, Switzerland

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Bellinzona, Switzerland

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Venice, Italy

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Lugano, Switzerland

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Lugano, Switzerland

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Lugano, Switzerland

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Schloss Favorit Woods, Bad Wurtemburg, Germany

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Schloss Favorit Woods, Bad Wurtemburg, Germany

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Bellinzona, Switzerland

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Giubiasco, Switzerland

Final word: the thing is, you just have to decide how the photographs you want to make are going to be best achieved, and in particular by what angle of view. Then choose the lens to match your needs. Never mind if it’s “soft at the edge”, or has 0.5% barrel distortion, or whatever. To 99% of your audience it won’t even register, and the other 1% only like cat and brick wall photos anyway. But if it works well for you and the way you seen the world through a camera, it will make your photography better.

Posted in category "Photography" on Sunday, April 27, 2014 at 02:31 PM

Icescapes

in Antarctica , Thursday, April 10, 2014

Well, it’s only taken me about 14 months, but I’ve just published a gallery of “icescapes” - there’s not much land to be seen - from January 2013 in the Antarctic Peninsula.

Icescapesgallery

The weather was stubbornly grim pretty much all the time, which suited me just fine. Bright sunlight is bad news when you’re photographing ice. And anyway, it’s the Antarctic, it’s supposed to be grim. All photos were taken using my satisfyingly unfashionable and “obsolete” Olympus E-5, which didn’t skip a beat in the wind, rain and snow.

Some of the photo titles bear homage to my constant polar soundtrack, Biosphere’s gorgeous “Substrata” and “Cirque”. The rest I just made up, as usual.

Posted in category "Antarctica" on Thursday, April 10, 2014 at 08:41 PM

Gondolare

in Photography , Monday, February 24, 2014

Cosa sarebbe Venezia senza le gondole ? E una foto da Venezia senza una di quelle fatate imbarcazione, quelle trappole per turisti e fotografi ? A meta strada tra Doge e Disney, tra tradizione e tradimento. Pero sempre e per sempre ineluttabile.

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(dettagli tecnici: tutti Olympus E-P3, M-Zuiko 45mm f/1.8)

Posted in category "Photography" on Monday, February 24, 2014 at 09:45 PM

More Fame!

in Olympus E-System , Saturday, January 11, 2014

Following on from last October’s triumph, I have another photo featured in the official Olympus Magazine.

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It’s a bit like back when I was something like 10 years old, I had a letter published in “Look & Learn”. Only then I got a badge and a box of coloured pencils or something.  Now all I get is to bask in the glory.

Posted in category "Olympus E-System" on Saturday, January 11, 2014 at 01:28 PM

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