Welcome to my exclusive travel Images and videos website and my journey from point and shoot snap shots, to professional looking video and still images.

If you are like me, you tend to cram in a lot of sight seeing while you are on vacation. I took over four hundred pictures and video while on my 4 night Vince vacation, which also included a day in Florence and I also found time to shoot video. At that time I was traveling with my Sony PMW-200 HD XDCAM video camera, Nikon D800 with a f2.8 24-70mm lens and a D80 with an 18-200mm walkabout lens.

The PMW-200 is a professional 422 compliant 10 bit HD camera used for long form documentary footage.  However, it’s not a light camera to be carrying around on vacation, a  big upgrade from the  Canon Vixia which sparked my first interest in producing videos.

Video provides another dimension that can not be achieved with still images. To illustrate this I have added a video of Sydney’s botanic gardens to my site with the sounds of downtown Sydney.  Video also has another level of complexity which has to be mastered. In my case, my earlier D80, D200 and D700 Nikon cameras didn’t include a video capability.

I had access however, to a Canon Vixia HD camera with Pinnacle editing software and started experimenting with a combination of video and stills.  My first attempt came about with a visit to the Victoria Island Butchart gardens.

For me there has never been any question about deciding to use dedicated video cameras for my video work.  My new Sony PXW-Z90 4K XDCAM   is “my go to camera” for 4K HDR travel videos.  I was looking at purchasing the Sony PXW-FS5 Camera, which I felt at that was close to being updated with newer technology (a polite way of saying that it was old tech. sorely in need of an upgrade).

The allure of interchangeable E mount lenses and internal electronic variable ND filter is still  a very attractive proposition.  However, I am currently very impressed with my V90Z particularly when viewed on my Sony 4K 65 inch master series OLED TV.

The recently introduced Sony FX6 will perhaps be on the agenda at some point. Some will point to the fact that the FX6 is only a repackaged A7S III which doesn’t include IBIS and has a less friendly menu system. FX7 or FX9 owners would likely disagree. I’m waiting for an FX6 mk2 to appear.

The Nikon Z6 was an obvious choice for gaining experience using a digital camera to create high quality video.

Travel digital SLR/Mirrorless D750/Z6 Videos verses PXW-Z90 Pro Cinema Line Camera

Like most people I do a lot of research when looking to purchase a new SLR. mirrorless, or pro cinema line video camera.  However, it’s only part of the decision for me when I purchase new equipment.  The reviews and specs play a part in reducing my selection into one or two choices. It may also help me to decide not to upgrade my equipment until a better choice is available.  It may be that some people can afford only one camera to provide for their still images and video needs. For me a large part of my choice comes down to the feel, usability and build quality of the camera.

I have a Nikon Z6(mk1) with a Dji Ronin S gimbal and Atomos ninja V external recorder.  Forgoing the fact that the Z6 is not quite up with the specs of the Sony A7S III in that it records only 8 bit video internally,  is not yet as good with respect to it’s autofocus and lacks raw output and Slog 3.  It’s still a very good camera (see Digital SLR verses Mirrorless). Of course the Atomos ninja V does allow you to shoot 10 bit ProRes, if that’s your thing.

If I’m out all day shooting both images and video there is no likelihood that I would be doing it with the same Camera.  Trying to change video verses  still camera settings and playing with gimbals and external recorders, swapping batteries adds unnecessary complexity.  Ergonomically my PXW-V90Z with 5GHz and 2.4GHz Wi-Fi streaming is very versatile as a hand held device, the battery lasts all day and with two high speed 64gig SD cards it’s the ultimate run and gun camera.

For occasional video work I prefer Nikons internal 8 bit colour rendering to the 10 bit Sony colour with its larger dynamic range.  This is a case where personal preferences and the impact of different specifications has to be weighed carefully against usability and your ability to produce high quality content.  At the end of the days it’s all the content, composition and light.

Travel digital SLR D750 Images verses Z6 Mirrorless

As a long time Nikon SLR user, the latest being a D750, why would I consider a mirrorless camera?  The Sony Alpha a7s camera is very attractive mirrorless body and have been sorely tempted to add it to my collection, also considering the fact that there are some very nice lenses that I could collect to go with a future FX6 acquisition. The fact is, that I have a large number of Nikon lenses which work very well using the Z series adapter.  Having owned Canon SLR’s during the pre-digital age, with lenses that were no longer supported when Canon went digital, I’m not inclined to give up on my Nikon lens investment any time soon.

I really didn’t think that I would like a mirrorless camera, but having got the Z6 with the 50mm and 24-70mm/4 S lens, I very much now like this mirrorless camera!

It’s all about the ergonomics, the feel of the camera, the build and design (size and usability) quality. Sorry Sony and Canon, but Nikon has a winner here  Something that’s often overlooked is the larger lens mount, the proximity of the lens to sensor which allows for improvements in the lens design characteristics  Just compare the basic engineering of the Z6 against the Sony and Canon body lens combinations.

Comparing the D750 with the Z6 for stills, they are similar shooting under normal conditions.  The Z6 is better in low light conditions. The Z6 with the 24-70/4 S lens is every bit as good as the D750 24-70mm 1:2.8G lens.  The D750 shoots 1080P/60  where as the shoots 2160P/30.

I’m yet to make up my mind if the Z6 would entirely replace my D800 or D750 with the 24-70mm 1:2.8G lens.  There is the 17-35mm 1:2.8D,  28-300mm  1:3.5-5.6G and 200-500mm f/5.6E ED VR to be considered when it comes packing a bag to take on vacation.  So now it becomes a choice between the D750 or D800 and the D800 still wins, or maybe not. The Z6 is now my got to have travel camera, just because once you hold it, you can’t put it down because it’s comparatively light light easy to use.

The Sony A7S III is a great camera, however Nikon is just getting started in the mirrorless market and Canon and Sony better watch out. Sorry Canon you may be the market sales leader, but eww!

Sydney botanic garden Australia
Sydney Australia

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Australian birds
New York Central Park
Kyoto Japan

Nasa’s Perseverance Mars rover mission images

 


 

2021 Nasa Mars Perseverance Images