you might remember me asking about wether bringing my Phase setup or my tech camera with me for my 1-month long trip in the US last July. Well, as the title of this thread suggest, I ended up bringing the tech camera with me - and didn't regret it for a second... with only a small caveat. First of all, traveling and hiking a little with a 20+ lbs backpack was ok, despite the heat; in the bag I had:
- Silvestri Bicam II + Flexibellows, sliding adapter, Phase P65+, 4 extra batteries;
- Rodenstock 28mm, Schneider 47mm, Schneider 90mm;
- Panasonic GF1, 20mm, 7-14mm, 45-200mm, various filters;
- Gitzo tripod + Cube;
- Water, flashlights, radio, compass, leatherman multitools, energy bars, etc.
Setting up the camera for a shot took me about 3-5 minutes from unloading the pack from my shoulders to being ready to fire, which is not at all bad: the camera was ready in the bag without lens, so unload the tripod, open it, level the cube, take camera off bag, mount it on tripod, take lens off bag, mount it on camera, take filters (if needed), mount them on lens. Very easy. I also found very easy to frame my shot with the bellow & loupe, as well as focusing with the ground glass. A lot could be said for the feeling that looking in the loupe in the dark, opening the lens and seeing that huge reverse image on the glass gives you: no finders on any dSLR-like camera comes even close to the view you get on LF cameras, and the MF+tech camera solution is the closest thing to that in the digital realm: I loved it, to put it shortly. It makes it very easy as well to position filters and check their effect; the only backside is the ability to see well frame edges, when light isn't abundant that is not always easy.
Shot-to-shot times weren't also a problem; the whole cock-the-shutter, wake-the-back (the P65+ doesn't need it, but the weather was very hot so I'd rather have it as cool as possible), take-the-shot and repeat routine, takes very little to get used to and is very easy to do without having to take your eyes from the loupe and without looking at the lens. Also, I really loved the sliding back adaptor and the stitching capabilities that it offers: sliding the back means not having to move the lens, which means much easier stitching in PP, and the Southwest is very conducive to the 2:1 or 3:1 landscape ratio.
I will post pictures as they get ready; so far, I PP'd some Cathedral Rock (Sedona) and the lot from the Grand Canyon (South Rim). Here a few samples:
more images can be found here.
Hope this was of some interest!