Camera Reviews

I review cameras a little differently than many Web sites: I use them, often extensively, in the field before writing my opinions. In just the reviews so far, these cameras have been to Argentina, Australia, Botswana, Chile, Ecuador, Galapagos, New Zealand, South Africa, as well as a host of United States locations. In other words, I travel with and use these cameras much like a customer would. I don't sit in an office doing a quick examination and writing up some quick-and-dirty observations. I do what you'll do: pack the cameras into my bag and go out and shoot with them. 

All equipment, unless otherwise called out, was bought by me personally from a regular camera dealer. I get the same package you do, and have the same out-of-box experience you will.

I don't coddle equipment. I don't fear getting them scratched or damaged. My landscape work takes me into tough environments sometimes, and this gear is out hanging off my neck or one of my various carrying systems, not tucked away in a bag inside a bag somewhere. I shoot deliberate, planned work, and I shoot spontaneous spur-of-the-moment things.

That said, I also believe that a serious photographer does need to know exactly what his equipment does. To that end, I do shoot controlled situations and targets in my studio with every product, and evaluate data very carefully with a number of tools, including Imatest and Raw Data Digger. Unlike other sites, I don't get hung up on trying to build huge image sample collections and tables of esoteric numbers for you to study. You can get those things at other sites if you're really interested in them. (I should also point out that the Web isn't a great place to try to assess image samples, as we ultimately have to present things with JPEG compression and your monitor may not be color calibrated like the ones in the labs.) Instead, I assume you want a real photographer's assessment of all those esoteric details and how the camera actually performs in the field. Finally, note that my star system of ratings probably doesn't mean the same thing as you're used to. I'm a very tough grader. Average (3 stars) is average. Exceptional (5 stars) would truly have to be exceptional. There are those that believe that everything can be exceptional, but they apparently haven't looked at the dictionary definition of that word. I've written more on what my ratings mean here.

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