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Thread: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

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    Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    I just finished an experiment in an attempt to lighten my bag, and wrote an article on the results. Hopefully someone here can benefit. Sorry it's not a short article.

    Read the Article here

    I don't want to be rude - I'll put an overview here.

    I've been on Phase One for a few years (DF+, 45/80/150), (Guy is to blame for that) and only do Landscape. Anyway, I didn't jump on the lighter-is-better bandwagon because I felt (and still do) that I need the quality that I get from the IQ260. I don't print large just for fun. I print large because it best represents the subjects I shoot and my vision for the print.

    Having said that, I've obviously run into the trials of the bag getting too heavy to explore the way I would like. I'm 54 years old, (is that old?) and healthy, but the knees were having a hard time with a 30 lb bag after a couple of miles on tough terrain.

    That's the background. The solution I found, with getting the weight down as the objective, was to move to shooting the Cambo + IQ260, (leaving DF+ and lenses home in studio) and bringing a Sony A7 along for detail shots. I tried this out last week and am very pleased. I ended up downgrading (lightening) my tripod and ballhead as well, and some of you may enjoy reading about the results as I've come to the conclusion that we may be carrying more tripod/ballhead then we need. (at least sometimes)

    As always, these things are very personal, and what works for me won't work for someone else. Still, the end result seems good as I didn't sacrifice quality, and I don't mind using the Tech camera workflow a larger % of the time.

    You all have given me lots of great information here, and I wanted to give something back.

    Thanks,

    Your comments and experiences welcome.
    -- Mark Esposito
    http://www.glorious-landscape.com
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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Light is nice for sure. And you'll be amazed at how many great landscape captures you can make with just 3 lenses --- one at approximately the diagonal of your format (~70mm for your IQ) one at the short side of your format (~40 for your IQ) and one at 2x the long side of your format (~105 for your IQ)

    It is no secret why Canon and Nikon made their TS lenses in 24, 45 and 85, as they follow that same formula pretty closely...
    Jack
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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    I follow a similar line of thought. For my territory 40mm and 28mm in Arca mount. Instead of the Sony I carry the Fuji X -t1 for macro and shots I just don't want to take the time to setup the Arca.

    Paul

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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul2660 View Post
    I follow a similar line of thought. For my territory 40mm and 28mm in Arca mount. Instead of the Sony I carry the Fuji X -t1 for macro and shots I just don't want to take the time to setup the Arca.

    Paul
    Funny. Great minds think alike. I had the X-T1 just in from B&H for a trip to Colorado when I decided that for my purposes the fullframe would serve me better, as well as the extra resolution, so I returned the X-T1 and brought the A7.

    The friend I went with had the X-T1 on my recommendation and loved it.

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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    I currently carry IQ260 + ALPA 12 SWA + Rodenstock 23mm HR + Sony RX1R + Gitzo GK1582OT + Arca-Swiss P0, which is about 8-9 lbs in weight.

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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Quote Originally Posted by voidshatter View Post
    I currently carry IQ260 + ALPA 12 SWA + Rodenstock 23mm HR + Sony RX1R + Gitzo GK1582OT + Arca-Swiss P0, which is about 8-9 lbs in weight.
    Thanks. You came up with the same formula. The ARCA Swiss p0 looks like a nice solution, and very light.

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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack View Post
    Light is nice for sure. And you'll be amazed at how many great landscape captures you can make with just 3 lenses
    Thanks Jack. Since going MFD that's all I've ever had. :^}

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack View Post
    --- one at approximately the diagonal of your format (~70mm for your IQ) one at the short side of your format (~40 for your IQ) and one at 2x the long side of your format (~105 for your IQ)
    I do need to fill these gaps on the Cambo. Just need to find some money. I don't like the idea of ever selling great glass anymore to pay for new glass. There are more sorry people around here that wish they had some of that glass back. Maybe Guy will lend me the money?

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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    I've pretty much lightened my load a great deal but I still have yet to address the tripod ball head. Problem is I really like my RRS series 2 tripod and my Arca Swiss Z1 double pan head which is pretty heavy. My system now really does not need that much overkill but its hard to find a tripod in lightweight/ travel style that still gets over 6ft. I'm not a tall person but I do like to be taller sometimes on a shoot with my cam. Have to have a look at what RRS has these days. The head is the tough one as I just love the Z1
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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Thank you Mark, very interesting. Am considering similar moves with an A7r but it could also go the other way - especially with the new Phase One 40-80 lens. The image quality I'm getting out of the IQ260 is so good that I don't think I'll be able to give it up easily. So it's now looking like the DF+ with 40-80 and 75-150 lenses (the latter is a wonderful lens) and the Cambo WRS with Rodenstock 28 TS. The amount of crop available with the Cambo Rodenstock is ridiculous so I'm sticking with only one lens for the moment.

    I'm now going to the gym to prepare for the 40-80. It weighs 4.1lb on its own.

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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    I've pretty much lightened my load a great deal but I still have yet to address the tripod ball head. Problem is I really like my RRS series 2 tripod and my Arca Swiss Z1 double pan head ...
    Right, now I'm more convinced that a single tripod/ballhead setup for everything isn't optimal if one wants to keep the weight down. (Heck, if we're shooting a quarter mile from the car who cares) This was the big surprise of the experiment for me. The BH-30 is tiny, and I know it wouldn't work for a big DSLR + 200-400mm lens, but, for the Cambo, IQ260, and tech lens it seemed fine. That's actually not so light at just under 5 lbs. A Nikon D800 with 70-200 f/2.8 is only 1/2 pound heavier. If mounted correctly on the lens foot that might work fine. Anyway, something to think about.

    Now that you're all Sony all the time, I think that rig can definitely work fine on a lighter setup when you go out in the boonies.

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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Osbourne View Post
    Thank you Mark, very interesting. Am considering similar moves with an A7r but it could also go the other way - especially with the new Phase One 40-80 lens. The image quality I'm getting out of the IQ260 is so good that I don't think I'll be able to give it up easily. So it's now looking like the DF+ with 40-80 and 75-150 lenses (the latter is a wonderful lens) and the Cambo WRS with Rodenstock 28 TS. The amount of crop available with the Cambo Rodenstock is ridiculous so I'm sticking with only one lens for the moment.

    I'm now going to the gym to prepare for the 40-80. It weighs 4.1lb on its own.
    Thanks Richard. Hey, you might be younger than me as well, and the weight might not be an issue. Still, thinking about what helps get you to better locations without sacrificing quality is worthwhile. You can always try it and see.

    I remember reading in Ansel Adams Biography how he carried a 40-50 lb setup into Yosemite when he was younger. He didn't stay on the valley floor either.
    -- Mark Esposito
    http://www.glorious-landscape.com
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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    In his golden years he used a Hasselblad. Today he would be using an A7r.
    Eduardo


    Quote Originally Posted by mesposito View Post
    Thanks Richard. Hey, you might be younger than me as well, and the weight might not be an issue. Still, thinking about what helps get you to better locations without sacrificing quality is worthwhile. You can always try it and see.

    I remember reading in Ansel Adams Biography how he carried a 40-50 lb setup into Yosemite when he was younger. He didn't stay on the valley floor either.

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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    I can remember the days (20 years ago) when I would head out on a three day backpack in the Escalante River canyons north of Lake Powell, Utah with a 75 pound pack on my back. I carried a Toyo View 4x5, lenses, film holders, changing bag plus a Pentax 645n, several lenses (my daytime walkaround 'point and shoot'), film, camping gear and food. Basic prep for a 4-6 mile jaunt was a hardy snack, plenty of water before hand and a megadose of Ibuprofen. I can't even comprehend doing that type of thing now but thankfully some of my best selling images remain from those backpacks.
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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Quote Originally Posted by Charles Wood View Post
    I can remember the days (20 years ago) when I would head out on a three day backpack in the Escalante River canyons north of Lake Powell, Utah with a 75 pound pack on my back. ...
    Charles - That's impressive. I was a musician as a younger guy, with no intentions of having anything but my trumpet bag on my back. I do wish I would have started earlier, but it is what it is.

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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    I also started late. I was in my 50's when I started backpacking, a result of the need to get beyond the typical national park overlooks and pullouts. I discovered I liked the hiking and camping as much as the photography--especially the solitude. Those trips were in the days when my wife allowed me to do the solo trips. Now I feel it if I have more than 35 pounds on my back, requiring a friend, son or grandson to help carry the load.
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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    I must confess to getting lazy....

    If I'm shooting from my truck/camper, I take the full Df/IQ180 kit with 28, 45, 55, 80, 150 and 240 lenses along with a big Gitzo and The Cube. I then rarely stray more than a kilometre or so from the truck! Often, though, I'll just take the 55 SK lens, my favourite.

    For real hiking I now take the a7r, FE 24-70, FE 55 and FE 70-200. Very light and very compact with results rivalling the MF gear up to 24 inch prints.

    Different horses for different courses!

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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    ................... The head is the tough one as I just love the Z1
    Guy,

    The Z1 is less than 1 lb. and close to perfect, how much lighter do you need ? I have an Acratech on a 2-series Gitzo for light weight, but it doesn't hold a candle to the Z1 and it's not much lighter.

    Tom

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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    I have no problem getting perfectly sharp images while supporting my PO 645AF body / IQ140 combination on a Gitzo GT1542T tripod with the Acratech GPS head. As long as it's not blowing more than 20 mph it's tack sharp. I rarely hang the backpack from the center stand hook for more mass. I use a combination of self timer (3 seconds) and mirror lock up. It's a tiny bit slower but to me perfectly acceptable. I carry 4 lenses and a film back with a couple pro packs of film.

    According to my scales, everything (back, body, 4 lenses, tripod, accessories) weighs in at 20.8 pounds. I guess I'm in the bantam weight category... I'm using a LowePro Mini Trekker AW backpack (had it for over a decade and still love it). It's definitely full, but not uncomfortably so. Any notion I have of getting a larger bag would only lead to temptation to lug more (unnecessary) stuff with me.
    Aaron

    AaronKPhoto : Flickr : IQ140, 645DF, various lenses

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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Interesting. Completely independently my walk around kit with my Leica Monochrom is a 24 lux, 50 chron asp. and 75 chron. That pretty much does the trick for me, despite owning dozens (literally) of lenses.
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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Good timing for me with this topic. My brother and I are planning a trip to the Wind Rivers in early September, and I am trying to figure out how much camera I am willing to haul. Do I bring the a7r and the Alpa, or just the a7r? The Sony is definitely going so I can shoot while hiking and climbing.

    It looks like the Alpa will add about 10 lbs w/ STC, 3 lenses, back, Disto and batteries. The a7r is less than 4 lbs with Leica WATE, 35 FE, 55 FE and Leica 90/2. I'm struggling to justify bringing the Alpa, but the thought of photographing with it in the Wind's sends excited chills up my spine.

    Another option would be to just bring the two Leica lenses for the a7r, and then the 60xl and 90hr for the Alpa. That would be a few pounds less...

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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Quote Originally Posted by tsjanik View Post
    Guy,

    The Z1 is less than 1 lb. and close to perfect, how much lighter do you need ? I have an Acratech on a 2-series Gitzo for light weight, but it doesn't hold a candle to the Z1 and it's not much lighter.

    Tom
    That's the issue nothing really comes close to the Z1. It's just to good. I may get the travel legs though from RRS and just mount the Z1 on it when I hike.
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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Hi

    My experiences are as follows.

    With the Gitzo Traveler GT1541T with ArcaSwiss P0 head. - I can shoot with the Cambo (RC400) 80meg back and any Cambo lens I have (28, 40, 60, 90, 120) The 90 the heaviest or the 120 the longest.

    But the DF + - No way -- the shots are not shape. even with the 45Dmm -- Have to move up to series 2 Gitzo. Of course with MU and 10 sec timer and cable release.

    I think also if I went longer than 150mm - the RRS 3 series.

    It is not just weight load - it also has to do the resonance of the camera / lens shutter, mirror and also the lens length.

    Phil

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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Quote Originally Posted by dchew View Post
    Good timing for me with this topic. My brother and I are planning a trip to the Wind Rivers in early September, and I am trying to figure out how much camera I am willing to haul. Do I bring the a7r and the Alpa, or just the a7r? The Sony is definitely going so I can shoot while hiking and climbing.

    It looks like the Alpa will add about 10 lbs w/ STC, 3 lenses, back, Disto and batteries. The a7r is less than 4 lbs with Leica WATE, 35 FE, 55 FE and Leica 90/2. I'm struggling to justify bringing the Alpa, but the thought of photographing with it in the Wind's sends excited chills up my spine.

    Another option would be to just bring the two Leica lenses for the a7r, and then the 60xl and 90hr for the Alpa. That would be a few pounds less...

    Dave
    Another thought is to slice this down the middle; bring three Leica lenses as the main "walk around" kit; for inspiration (but not all the time) the Alpa with just one lens. If landscape shots, you might not need the Disto (check focus on the screen, and just take more shots to get it).
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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Quote Originally Posted by dchew View Post
    Good timing for me with this topic. My brother and I are planning a trip to the Wind Rivers in early September, and I am trying to figure out how much camera I am willing to haul. Do I bring the a7r and the Alpa, or just the a7r? The Sony is definitely going so I can shoot while hiking and climbing.
    Dave
    For me the solution came down to accepting that under certain conditions there was a balanced load of gear that while making some sacrifices, it didn't sacrifice quality or flexibility. The Sony doesn't weigh enough to leave behind, and that's the point of having it in a Landscape bag.

    The hard part is determining what to sacrifice to make the perfect bag, and only you can decide that. I go back to ROI and determining which lenses give you the most bang for the buck, (in your planned scenario) and which you might not use at all. With a reduced bag I'd leave those home.

    I just thought of something to add to this. If I've determined that a 14 Lb bag is what I'm comfortable with on a 6-mile hike, than I should be able to get my bag to that weight. Otherwise, just bring everything and suffer.
    -- Mark Esposito
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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Quote Originally Posted by Woody Campbell View Post
    Interesting. Completely independently my walk around kit with my Leica Monochrom is a 24 lux, 50 chron asp. and 75 chron. That pretty much does the trick for me, despite owning dozens (literally) of lenses.
    Woody and All,

    Thanks so much for the feedback on this subject. I put it out there but I'm still philosophizing over it, so this helps.

    Your post makes me think again about the actual problem, and how you've resolved it for yourself. We all have more gear than we can carry. No arguments there right? :^} My dilemma has been the battle in my own mind that goes something like this: "You bought this gear to use! You're going to travel how many miles and not bring that lens?"

    This isn't good thinking. Going out into the wilderness isn't like going across town.

    A little cropping on a high-resolution Back isn't the end of the world. Also, a lot of us have a favorite range, so that narrows things a bit.

    Maybe having dozens of lenses is good! At least you realize right from the start that you can't take it all!

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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    By Z1 are you guys referring to the Arca Z1? I still have the old B1 that looks just like it only about 10 years older. Has only the one knob with the fine tuning lock inside?

    I just upgraded to a D4 geared, and love it. Less mass and size than the RRS BH-55 by far. Just starting to use the D4 but really like it.

    As for the Sony A7r, my other main reason not to carry it when I have the tech camera on a trip, easy, I would tend to favor the Sony. Setup time alone with the tech solution can get old in a hurry. But the results still show me it's worth it.

    Having the Fuji along, at 16MP is great for macro shots, I can't get with the tech, or just don't want to take the time to setup. It also is a easy camera to stitch with with the 1.5 crop.

    Paul
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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff View Post
    Another thought is to slice this down the middle; bring three Leica lenses as the main "walk around" kit; for inspiration (but not all the time) the Alpa with just one lens. If landscape shots, you might not need the Disto (check focus on the screen, and just take more shots to get it).
    That's a good idea. The 60xl may be the ticket.

    Quote Originally Posted by mesposito View Post
    I just thought of something to add to this. If I've determined that a 14 Lb bag is what I'm comfortable with on a 6-mile hike, than I should be able to get my bag to that weight.
    That's exactly how I would approach this. As the miles go up the weight goes down, to a point. For me at 51, backpacking with 30 lbs is a joy, 40 lbs is pleasant misery, and 50 lbs is just plain misery. A lot depends on what my brother and I decide in regards to climbing. If we stick to Class 4 stuff so all we need is a rope and ice axe, that's one thing. But if we are bringing harness, hardware, etc. for Class 5 stuff, then the Alpa will probably stay home.

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul2660 View Post
    I just upgraded to a D4 geared, and love it. Less mass and size than the RRS BH-55 by far. Just starting to use the D4 but really like it.
    I too like the D4 very much. I currently have three heads: cube, D4 and BH40. The BH40 is still half the weight of the D4, so over the next few months I'm going to figure out if the BH40 is good enough for this trip. I can deal with a ball head's annoyances for a few days if it saves me 1/2 lb with no hit in image quality.

    Dave
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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Quote Originally Posted by dchew View Post
    That's a good idea. The 60xl may be the ticket.



    That's exactly how I would approach this. As the miles go up the weight goes down, to a point. For me at 51, backpacking with 30 lbs is a joy, 40 lbs is pleasant misery, and 50 lbs is just plain misery. A lot depends on what my brother and I decide in regards to climbing. If we stick to Class 4 stuff so all we need is a rope and ice axe, that's one thing. But if we are bringing harness, hardware, etc. for Class 5 stuff, then the Alpa will probably stay home.



    I too like the D4 very much. I currently have three heads: cube, D4 and BH40. The BH40 is still half the weight of the D4, so over the next few months I'm going to figure out if the BH40 is good enough for this trip. I can deal with a ball head's annoyances for a few days if it saves me 1/2 lb with no hit in image quality.

    Dave

    Hi

    Try the Arca Swiss P0 - I like much more than the RRS 40.

    Thanks

    Phil

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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Paul yes the Arca Swiss Z1. It's rated for like 130 lbs. it's as strong as the Cube if not better in some cases. I used it on tech kits, big phase kits and nothing seems too big for it I ran into. The cube is nice but for my diverse set of shooting the ball heads are better.
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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Still take my old B1 out in the field. May be a bit smaller but looks just the same. Mine just says monoball but looks the same as pics of the newer Z1, expect the mounting plate. The old ones like mine had the habit of locking the ball. Have had to send mine in 2x over last 12 years to Precision Camera works to free it up. Last time was about 6 years ago, so they have changed out something.



    Paul
    Last edited by Paul2660; 2nd July 2014 at 06:12.

  31. #31
    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Quote Originally Posted by Woody Campbell View Post
    Interesting. Completely independently my walk around kit with my Leica Monochrom is a 24 lux, 50 chron asp. and 75 chron. That pretty much does the trick for me, despite owning dozens (literally) of lenses.
    I am still amazed that with literally every system I've ever owned and every new one I purchase, the 3 main lenses that were in the bag always followed that same format guideline. The only exception was when I was big into bird and wildlife photography.
    Jack
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  32. #32
    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Mine has almost always been 24,35,85 and in some cases 21,28,50. But I always liked the start at 24mm than add a extreme wide. I have that today in Sony 24,35,85, 135 than a 55 and a 18 equivalent . I tend to rent above 135 when I need it. This goes back to even film days. I never had a math equation it just felt natural to me.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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  33. #33
    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    Now my favorite on a tech cam was a 28,60 and the 120. I liked the 23 a lot also. Heck I did a whole workshop with just the 23 90 percent of the time. Lol

    I tend to like wide angles and I also like the 85mm focal length in 35mm. For some reason that just works for me
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

  34. #34
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    Re: Lightening the Load with Cambo+IQ260+Sony

    There seem to be two ways to look at this:

    1) what do I need for the range of images I want to take?
    2) what is the least I could take, if things were really minimal?

    The first seems to lead to a few lenses (gee what if there is a long shot? or a wide?) and its hard to say no to the work flow and the options. Everything is treasured, and cutting is hard.

    The second is useful when traveling: you talk to the gear, and make it behave - and tell "its either minimal or you aren't coming". If we can do this with our families, we ought to be able to do it to a bunch of stuff that doesn't talk back.

    Seen this way, one lens, one back, a few batteries, hyper focal, a small tripod… and a few bits… might work. Or something along those lines. Remember the days with one camera, one lens?
    www.gigi-photos.com
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