*Panasonic Lumix G Vario 12-32mm f/3.5-5.6 Lens, Tested

Lumix G Vario 12-32mm f/3.5-5.6 lens review Yet another kit lens has come onto the scene.  On paper, ho-hum, a little wider, a little shorter, still slow, no focus ring…  Why would this particular kit lens be a better choice than the other current options?  Yes, it’s tiny and light weight and nearly as small as the Lumix 14mm Pancake lens, but what’s this?  It’s reasonably sharp at all focal lengths and all apertures and offers us a 24mm equivalent lens as opposed to the moderate wide 28mm equivalent in most all other kit zooms… Interesting.  Hit the jump for my user review on this little optic…

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*Panasonic GM1 Reviewed – Say hello to my little friend

gm1 and friends

I have spent the better part of the last month shooting with this camera almost exclusively.  I wanted to really get a feel for this tiny machine, its ins and outs, before I wrote up any type of review.  While being the smallest interchangeable lens system camera body currently available, it certainly has some ergonomic drawbacks, but that begs the question, who is this camera for, and can it be a compliment or even replacement for another of the micro 4/3 system cameras, even {gasp} a larger system camera?  Well…

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*Lumix GM1, mine’s smaller. A quick look at the smallest MILC camera.

this little piggy...

How small is too small?  How about a micro 4/3 camera that is smaller than most any fixed lens compact sporting a 1/1.6″ or 1/1.7″ sensor (not to mention any of the 1″ sensor cams, or even most compact p&s cameras I’ve owned)?  Well, I’d heard that the Panasonic Lumix GM1 was small, but I don’t think I was prepared for HOW small this thing actually is.  Have a look…

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*Amsterdam, a home away from home

reflections of a time past

Sometimes I lose track of what is and what isn’t familiar.  I can wake up in my own bed, surrounded by all of the elements involved in my habitual routine, and it takes me a moment to figure out where I am.  Other times, I can be thousands of miles away from home and feel as if I fit, I belong to the space I occupy.  All of us are, to an extent, just fumbling around this rock getting on with our lives, some of us possibly contributing more to the greater human experience than those of us photoblogging or whatever, but I’d like to think that certain places call us, mean more to us, regardless of our personal histories, and for some reason beyond my personal comprehension, just seem to make sense.  Like a familiar smell transporting me back to childhood, or meals reminding me of past occasions, Amsterdam has always just felt like home.

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*Porto, business and pleasure

the sea above and the sea below

No journey is greater than the one you’re on, and it is up to us to turn every day occurrence into the spectacular.  It certainly doesn’t hurt when you’re lucky enough to have to travel to amazing places for business for some of these every day occurrences.  I, like many I’m sure, struggle sometimes to truly appreciate that which life has blessed me with.  There are days that I allow the challenge of being a parent, partner or financial custodian get in the way of the realization that I have two healthy, normally happy children and an amazing wife.  There are those that say not to look back, but rather forward.  For me, I find an amazing amount of solace in being able to relive and appreciate time that has already been, and photography has played a large part in that.  It often allows me to reflect and remember why I should be happy and thankful.

We find ourselves in a new year, the promise of new beginnings being urged upon us.  With that in mind, I’d like to reflect on a recent trip I was able to take to Portugal where the weather and humanity are warm and inviting.  I am lucky enough to get to experience places like this, and for that, I am truly grateful. . .

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*Panasonic Lumix 20/20 vision! v.1 vs v.2

2020

What the what?  Why did Panasonic replace a seemingly near perfect lens with one that from initial reports didn’t remedy the AF speed which was really the only major gripe about the first version?  Well, let’s see…

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*Another set of this guy’s opinions, or Mirrorless Lens buying guide!

IMG_6052 - Version 2 (1)

As requested from the camera body shopping guide post (thanks Tim and Chris), here are my opinions on the best lenses for the various mirrorless systems.  Keep in mind that I have not shot extensively with all of these lenses, or at least, many of the lenses for systems that aren’t the micro 4/3 system aside from the tire kicking in stores or when getting the chance to shoot friend’s gear, so my opinion is based on minimal use combined with personal intrigue and web based research.  Because I don’t own an X series or Alpha E (NEX, etc) camera body, I have not been able to access many of the lenses on offer for any period of time, but there are a few I have, as well as those that I would certainly look long and hard at if I was invested in these systems.  As for the micro 4/3 lenses, I have those down pretty well.  C’mon in and I’ll lay out my faves…

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*One man’s opinion, or Holiday Shopping guide 2013!

P1060085

The season for the commercialization of spirituality (or, SFTCOS) is upon us and following suit, we have been absolutely bombarded with new offerings in the digital photography department.  Taking the holidays out of it, and looking at it purely from a gear point of view, it is truly an exciting time to be shopping around for the best bang for your (or a loved one’s) buck.

Over the last 4 years that I’ve written this blog, I’ve been asked quite a few questions about which cameras, lenses, systems, et al, are the best.  While I’ve chosen the gear I’ve chosen for my own personal reasons, there are so many others out there that offer their own set of pros and cons, and to put it plainly, there is no universal truth, nor answer to that question.

Come on in and I’ll give my take on which of the newly announced cameras over the last year or so are the most intriguing, interesting, best value or just plain confusing…

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*The GX7 vs the OM-D E-M5, battle for my affection, Round 3 – IQ, Interface, Features and the Final Decision

round3

These two have gone toe to toe, and we’re all tired.  If you’re not, believe me you will be, this final round is a long one, and really the reason I needed to break this into three parts.  Now it’s time to see which, if either can really pull itself ahead and prove to be a better choice.  I use the word choice because, it will come down to a personal preference, or needed feature for any given shooter because both are great cameras.  I’m finding that it is a decision based more on what each camera doesn’t have as opposed to the qualities that they do.  Both are great, but what can you live without?  Here’s round three, the round to end all others…at least for me and my decision making process.

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*The GX7 vs the OM-D E-M5, battle for my affection, Round 2 – Build Quality and Ergonomics

BattleRound2blog - Version 2

The first round produced a bit of a shocker with the GX7 pulling out a surprise partial victory in the IBIS battle (read round 1 here).   The higher res EVF and LCD also fell in favor to the Panasonic.  Now, let’s look at the physical build and ergonomic qualities of these two cameras… ROUND 2!

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