Mind game: mission-critical camera

Discussion in 'The Watering Hole' started by Jock Elliott, Sep 19, 2017.

  1. Jock Elliott

    Jock Elliott SC All-Pro

    Jan 3, 2012
    Troy, NY
    Let's suppose for a moment that you've been invited to document an expedition where you might be exposed to all sorts of weather conditions and environmental hazards (except being underwater). You have to get the pictures, and the camera has to be dead reliable. You can choose any camera/lens combo or any fixed lens camera, but it has to have some sort of viewfinder.

    What would you choose, and why?

    Cheers, Jock
     
  2. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    I'd probably go with whatever Pentax body was in my budget with the weather resistant 18-135mm lens. I've always felt like the Pentax cameras had a nice grip and good ergos...even with that slightly large-ish (for this group) 18-135 zoom.

    If wanting it smaller was important to the mission, I'd probably skip the mission, but I'd recommend the Oly E-M1 with the 12-40 f2.8 lens.

    And frankly, neither the Pentax option nor the Oly one need to be the most recent bodies....they can easily be 3 years old. I haven't seen any updates to any of the newer bodies that will make me a better photographer...but that's just me.
     
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  3. Lightmancer

    Lightmancer Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Aug 13, 2011
    Sunny Frimley
    Bill Palmer
    Well, I have to put in a vote for the X-Pro2. Bobby Tingle, over on FujiXSpot has proven what it can handle weatherwise. I'd pair it with the 18-135mm lens for flexibility and reach, plus that is also WR.

    Alternatively, for battery-independence and the ability to survive a World War, I would reach for my Leica II with 3.5cm Elmar. It would fit in a pocket, needs no power, could be used to knock in tent pegs or lay out the odd stoat and still keep snapping. I could fix it with a set of screwdrivers and a needle and thread if needed - although mine is over 80 years old now and still going strong.
     
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  4. drd1135

    drd1135 SC Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Jul 13, 2011
    Lexington, Virginia
    Steve
    I'll play. Olympus EM1 ii with 12-100 f4.
     
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  5. gryphon1911

    gryphon1911 SC Top Veteran

    645
    Feb 6, 2015
    Central Ohio, USA
    Andrew
    Nikon D500 with a 17-55/2.8 and 70-200/2.8
     
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  6. MoonMind

    MoonMind SC Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    868
    Dec 29, 2013
    Switzerland
    Matt
    Nikon D750 with 24-120mm f/4 VR; sufficiently weather-sealed for most applications except maybe downpours; gorgeous, fantasticly versatile files up to ISO 6400, quick and reliable AF, be it S-AF or C-AF/Tracking ("3D Tracking" in Nikon speak). I use for the exact reasons you state: dead reliable, prime IQ, not too bulky (especially considering that it's a FF DSLR), handles great. As for lighting and flash, you can scale that to exactly suit your needs (I'm very impressed by the Godox AD200 with X1T trigger - full TTL, but also fully manual with impressive output if needed; handholdable (not that I would recommend that, but it can be done)).

    That said, any of the Sony RX10 cameras with sufficiently well implemented off-camera light would probably handle most use cases quite well ...

    M.
     
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  7. Jock Elliott

    Jock Elliott SC All-Pro

    Jan 3, 2012
    Troy, NY
    Is the 12-100 internally zooming?

    Cheers, Jock
     
  8. MoonMind

    MoonMind SC Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    868
    Dec 29, 2013
    Switzerland
    Matt
    No, it isn't; neither is the Nikon 24-120mm ... What reach do you actually need? The Nikon 70-200mm f/4 is a fantastic lens, relatively light, and it zooms internally. The Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 is big and not weather-sealed, but a phenomenal performer (would pair very well with the D500 or D7500 ... - APS-C!).

    Nothing agains the E-M1 II with the 12-100mm f/4, though - a killer combo. But much more expensive than Nikon FF (and on par with the most expensive Nikon D500/zoom setup).

    M.
     
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  9. kyteflyer

    kyteflyer ~@¿@~

    Jan 31, 2011
    Newcastle, Australia
    Sue
    I'll play. I'd choose the Pentax K-5 with an appropriate lens. Probably either the 18-135 WR or the 16-85WR. I plan to get the latter at some point, in any case :)

    Why would I choose it? I'm familiar with the Pentax system, and I'm comfortable with it. What other reason could one have :)
     
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  10. Covey22

    Covey22 SC All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Feb 3, 2012
    Nikon D5 with either a 14-24 or a 24-70. If it's good enough for NASA...
     
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  11. drd1135

    drd1135 SC Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Jul 13, 2011
    Lexington, Virginia
    Steve
    Yeah, but cost is such a bourgeois concept. :hide:

    This combo is much lighter that the Nikon system and I do have to carry it through this harsh environment. The Mark II EM1 also has much better battery life. Also, if I can bring a second lens, the Panasonic 100-400 takes care of any other FL I would care to use.
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2017
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  12. john m flores

    john m flores SC All-Pro

    Aug 13, 2012
    Another vote for Pentax. Their APS-C cameras are tank-like.

    But another good option, especially if video is needed, is the Panny GH5 with the 12-35 and 35-100 F2.8 lenses
     
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  13. drd1135

    drd1135 SC Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Jul 13, 2011
    Lexington, Virginia
    Steve
    I know you're a fan of small sensor cameras, Jock, so remember the Olympus tough series. Maybe not as feature filled but more weather-proof than any ILC body/lens combo.
     
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  14. drd1135

    drd1135 SC Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Jul 13, 2011
    Lexington, Virginia
    Steve
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  15. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    I am also reading between the lines here and know that Jock values reach....and when one is in harsh conditions (like this mission sound like it is), switching lenses isn't always a great choice.

    Which would bring me back to a DSLR-sized choice like Pentax, Canikon (or Fuji) and an 18-135 WR lens (or similar).
     
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  16. drd1135

    drd1135 SC Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Jul 13, 2011
    Lexington, Virginia
    Steve
    12-100 on mu43 has the same reach as 18-135 on aps-c. Otoh, he could look at the new Sony RX-10 IV. This new one is WR and has all the reach you want (600 equivalent). It isn't tiny but at 2.4 lbs it's a nice self contained kit.
     
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  17. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    I've had the hots for that 12-100, but my financial situation looks like new gear for the forseeable future (and beyond). Are there any other "superzoom" WR m43 lenses.

    And are all the RX-10 cameras WR....or is it just the most recent one? I could live the shorter zoom range and slower functioning of the first version.
     
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  18. drd1135

    drd1135 SC Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Jul 13, 2011
    Lexington, Virginia
    Steve
    The first rx10 is WR so I assume they all are.
     
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  19. MoonMind

    MoonMind SC Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    868
    Dec 29, 2013
    Switzerland
    Matt
    All RX10 cameras are weather-*resistant* - not "sealed". I think it may pay to keep that in mind ...

    As for :mu43: weather-sealed, the Olympus 14-150mm II *is*, and even though it's not on the same level as one of the PRO zooms IQ-wise, you can get very nice images with it.

    M.
     
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  20. Ripleysbaby

    Ripleysbaby supernatural anesthetist

    Sep 9, 2011
    Cumbria UK
    Garry
    Definitely Pentax or Olympus with an appropriate lens. Their weather proof models have a proven record of reliability under extreme conditions. I would even choose over the top Canon and Nikon models
     
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