Earlier this month I wrote about the tools I use for web development going into 2014. This post is intended to serve the same purpose for my photography tools. That is, the documentation of a point in time.
My primary camera is the Nikon D3 with a selection of lenses including the 105mm F2.8 VR Micro, the 70-200mm F2.8 VRII, the 24-120mm F4.0 and the 17–35 F2.8. This setup allows me to do anything I can think of, and much more than I am capable of. But all of its components share a few traits: they are excellent, big and heavy.
Going into 2014, I’ve added an Olympus OM-D E-M1 with the 12-40mm F2.8 and 60mm F2.8 Macro lenses as a secondary camera system. Since it’s a micro four thirds format camera, it is much smaller and lighter than most other full-capability, interchangeable lens cameras. But the quality of the images it produces and the assurance of its build and handling make it a very attractive alternative to the D3. I doubt you’ll see the likes of Joe McNally or Scott Kelby starting a switch to micro four thirds, but David duChemin, David Hobby and Zack Arias are making serious moves in that direction.
The driver for me to look harder at the smaller cameras is that they are improving to the point of challenging dSLRs for my uses while their size makes it so much easier to have one with me when the opportunity for an image arrises. My Think Tank Airport Acceleration backpack is huge and heavy when I get all my gear together. For the OM-D I’ve added a National Geographic Explorer Medium backpack that will hold as many different lenses as the Airport Acceleration, but in the compact OM-D size. It will be smaller, much lighter and my travel bag (and the OM-D will be my camera system) for my annual trip to Cozumel, Mexico for Carnival 2014.
Another change for 2014 is in printers. I’ve used Epson printers for many years, but have recently changed to a Canon PRO-1. I’ve written about the reasons for the change already. The short version is that I’m tired of Epson print head clogging – I guess I just don’t print often enough.
It is possible that over the course of 2014 I may find that the OM-D system does all that I need it to do. I actually hope so. And if it does, the Nikon system will be headed to eBay and I’ll fill out the remainder of the photographic system components I need for the OM-D. I’ve already added the HLD-7 battery grip and the FL-600R flash!