Epicurus and the gear acquisition syndrome

Discussion in 'Philosophy of Photography' started by pictor, Jun 4, 2011.

  1. pictor

    pictor SC All-Pro

    Jul 14, 2010
    Do you know Epicurus? Epicurus was a very wise Hellenistic philosopher. He said: "Don't spoil what you have by desiring what you don't have; but remember that what you now have was once among the things only hoped for." He is so right with this! Everybody who suffers from gear acquisition syndrome should read and internalize this.

    I have learned the lesson. When I had a Nikon D90 I longed for a lighter camera, bought an E-PL1 and sold the D90. After selling the D90 I longed for the image quality I had when I owned the D90 and therefore longed for a DSLR again despite the knowledge that any other DSLR would suffer the same fate as the Nikon D90. Although Olympus repaired all lenses very well, the fact that all my Olympus lenses needed service made me very unlucky with my ยต4/3 gear. Some of you know that I got the Nikon D5100 and some lenses soon after the D5100 was available. The lenses were decentered and my neck ached again because of the weight. Thus I brought the D5100 back and made peace with Olympus.

    After that experience I put my Leica Summicron 50mm on my E-PL1 and took some photographs in the botanical garden using my great tripod. I did not know what my E-PL1 is capable of with a lens like that until I took some shot with that lens and the best shooting discipline I am capable of. I bought a Canon FD 100mm macro soon after the bad experience with the Nikon D5100 and the decentered lenses. Now I fully appreciate the advantages of the gear I own. I have a camera which is light and lenses which are great and a tripod which is light and sturdy. I am happy with the gear I own and do not long for a DSLR anymore. At the moment I am not even sure if I would buy a new Olympus with a new sensor. I can do so lovely things with the gear I already own and there is so much more I could do with it. Ataraxia, which every epicurean aims for, is near at last.

    Many thanks, dear Epicurus, my wise friend!
     
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  2. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Jul 12, 2010
    Philly, Pa
    He must be whom Tanya reads. She preaches that principal to me on a daily basis.

    From now on GAS for me is cured with GasX.
    Thanks for the post, very good read and Tanya thinks your a great guy.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  3. BBW

    BBW Administrator Emeritus

    Jul 7, 2010
    betwixt and between
    BB
    Christian, I am so pleased and happy for you! I've always loved your Seneca avatar...and now you have another classical reference with Epicurus and Ataraxia, the latter I had to look up. Good for you for curing your G.A.S. and realizing you have what you need and your needs are what you want.:flowers_2:
     
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  4. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Jul 3, 2010
    That's not Pictor?!

    :smile:
     
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  5. BBW

    BBW Administrator Emeritus

    Jul 7, 2010
    betwixt and between
    BB
    I think he's a bit younger.:wink:
     
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  6. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Jul 12, 2010
    Philly, Pa
    There really is nothing with GAS. One needs to get a clear view of wants/needs. They are not always the same. Variety is the spice in life.
    GAS becomes a problem if you horde everything and never unload it.

    In reality, one needs a camera and a lens. What I adore about the X100 is that lens options do not exist. I could sell everything and just use the X100 forever.
    For me, my GAS is with images not gear.
    I lust for the next chance to SEE and capture the image.
    This keeps me very controlled with gear.

    I have a very wealthy friend that buys more cameras and lenses but hardly gets any decent images. Lately he's on the X100 and nothing else.
    He found a way to curb his GAS.
     
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  7. BBW

    BBW Administrator Emeritus

    Jul 7, 2010
    betwixt and between
    BB
    Very true, Don. Wants and needs. I think that Christian would agree.
     
  8. retow

    retow SC All-Pro

    Jul 24, 2010
    I think Epicurus and X100 could cure me:biggrin:
     
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Lili

    Lili SC Hall of Famer

    Oct 17, 2010
    Dallas, TX
    Lili
    Don, that how I felt with my Hexar AF. Had I saved a it instead of buying the last few cameras I would have the X100 now.
    But I will wait, besides I am busy re-discovering my e510 with the 25mm and sometimes the 50mm F2 Pentax :)
     
    • Like Like x 1
  10. vincechu

    vincechu SC Veteran

    316
    Sep 14, 2010
    • Like Like x 2
  11. A very wise saying for all of our life, not just Camera gear.

    If we can not enjoy the things we have now, we will always be on the hunt for the next best thing. While I enjoy a new gadget just as much as the next person, I don't get on the gotta buy it the day it comes out bandwagon. Hint hint all of you who wait in line every year for the next "I" product.

    Best Buy's Buy Back Program is a great idea, but as I watch the commercial the thought runs through my head, "Why can't they just be happy with what they have."
    <iframe width="560" height="349" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/eZAAZ7iXN-o" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
     
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  12. pictor

    pictor SC All-Pro

    Jul 14, 2010
    Three new Pens have arrived and they have not even a new sensor and I am lusting for the E-P3. Obviously, ataraxia was not as near as I thought when I wrote that. To be honest, I know that I won't shoot better pictures, if I buy the E-P3. And even although I like to own the E-P3, I have some intuition that I should wait. Maybe I should.
     
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  13. BBW

    BBW Administrator Emeritus

    Jul 7, 2010
    betwixt and between
    BB
    It's difficult not to pay attention when there is so much out there and we hear and read so much. It's kind of like the news...sometimes I'd like to have a black out on it, but I'm an addict.

    I suppose your camera store will carry the E-P3?
     
    • Like Like x 1
  14. pictor

    pictor SC All-Pro

    Jul 14, 2010
    You are right. It is really hard, very hard. It is hard, although I know how these mechanisms work. I also know that it is better to update the photographer first and if not the photographer, then maybe some lenses which I often use, but which are not good enough. The new Panasonic/Leica 25mm or the Voigtlaender 25mm make much more sense to me than a new camera which is not really better in those aspects which are most important for my needs. But I don't really need that, either.

    In spite of my knowledge all those announcements and reviews raise lust in me to invest my money. This could be good, if I gained much joy by doing so. But if I bought a new camera I don't really need, I would be very sorry for having spent so much money as soon a camera is announced which I could be a real improvement. All new Pens are better than the Pens I already own. But none add something really significant which would bring me further photographically. So I know I should wait but I am afraid that I could do an impulse purchase as soon as I hold a new Pen in my hands.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  15. BBW

    BBW Administrator Emeritus

    Jul 7, 2010
    betwixt and between
    BB
    Christian, here's the solution: do not go into any camera stores! Or wait...do we still have Photokina coming?
     
  16. jonoslack

    jonoslack SC Veteran

    203
    May 6, 2011
    :dance3:
    Ah the trouble with GAS is that somehow it always builds up when you aren't noticing.
    I've just given in to it myself - I'm looking forwards to the E-P3 . . . and have it on order, but I kind of know that I'll be wanting a NEX 7 when it comes. The good bit is that with careful buying, one doesn't lose too much money on the turnaround, and new cameras bring new fun and new perspectives.

    I guess I relish my GAS!:yahoo:
     
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  17. dixeyk

    dixeyk Guest

    Ahhh...the affliction from which we all suffer and yet as soon as it is out of systems we line up for another go. For the first time in recent memory I am happy to have less disposable income that all of you obviously have. :biggrin: