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Thread: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

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    Member Maarten's Avatar
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    Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    If you don't like these topics just skip it an move on. I find them helpful. Thanks!

    I'm very much in doubt which camera to take with me. I had all my thoughts fixed on the M8 since it is small in size, easy to carry, small battery charger. But it needs a little more attention when taking a photograph and since I'm in a new country it might be easier to use a camera which has more automatic functions.

    It will be a trip from Tokyo, Kyoto, mount Koya, Takayama, trip through the Japanese Alps by train and cable car, Kamakura and then back to Amsterdam.

    What aspects to think of:
    - weight
    - automatic functions
    - available lenses
    - serviceability (?)
    - others?

    I know I won't get a definite answer from you and it is up to me but I hope you have some interesting viewpoints I can use to make a decision.

    Thanks!
    Maarten Boerma
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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    Well the M8 for me is the travel camera . Small, light and produces some of the best files around. So i lean towards it more than anything. Now going to Hong Kong and places like that everyone is shooting obviously Nikon and canons because these countries produce them and photography is very popular so you won't feel out of place pulling your gear out to shoot anywhere you go. But they are big and heavy and the D3 is one of the biggest guns out there. The files will be pretty similar in my book and honestly i think there very close to each other on the file side but the D3 will certainly have the high ISO advantage. Personally this is not D3 territory, just to big to lug around and unless you really need the longer focal lengths than i would avoid it. I think the D3 is a outstanding camera and give Nikon a bunch of credit , I want one also still but certain camera's just fit better in certain environments . The M8 is certainly this one , now having said that i can shoot just a fast on a M8 than anything else BUT i am very used to working with it and I have a lot of experience with manual camera's but even so the M8 on A mode is stellar and use it all the time. My advice if you never tried one than go to a store and really play with one, you may love it and you may hate it. But overall it is arguable the best travel camera out there
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Member Maarten's Avatar
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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    Thanks, Guy.

    I already own both it is just a choice between to very good options with each its pros and cons. On a holiday to Ireland I took a D2X with me and carried it around on walks through the country side. But now I'm more in the cities so I guess I won't be using the 80-200mm that much. I would have a 90 cron asph to take with me on the M8. Hmm, but still evening photos in Tokyo.. thats where the D3 comes in.
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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    Well the one thing is you may not need the length and that maybe a good thing. Now the M8 can do ISO 640 pretty well but I would recommend at least one fast lens like a 50 lux, 35 lux to do the evening stuff. You can do pretty well here depending on what you are after. Even a 28 cron would work well.

    Also just playing devils advocate the D3 would scream more steal me than a more well hidden M8. Hard to tuck a D3 under your shoulder than a M8.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    I understood that Japan is one of the safest place to visit. And I'm a tall guy 1.98m (6ft6). A D3 is a small camera relatively to my size

    I do have a noctilux so this would be good for the evening and night shots and I have a small tripod to take with me.

    But still one moment I think D3 and the other M8. I'm just a little more concerned about the sturdiness of the M8. I haven't had any troubles yet, but I spent too much time on these forums and read too many bad messages.
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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    Well the M8 does share some moments with the repair shops , somewhat over blown to a degree but I understand the worry.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    HI Maarten
    I can put myself in your boat exactly, as I also have both cameras.

    The answer my friend is screamingly obvious.

    Take them both! The M8 and a couple of lenses weighs so little. You don't have to carry the D3 around with you all the time.

    I hear what Guy says, in fact, I think the M8 files just have the edge in perfect conditions. . . . . but sticking the D3 on to auto-iso and aperture priority and banging away . . . .

    Definitely both - just don't carry both around with you all the time!

    Just this guy you know

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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    It really is a tough call . For me since it is NOT working for a client than I would go M8 but for a client I would take both. I just don't trust any system to be only one camera for client work.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    Quote Originally Posted by Maarten View Post
    If you don't like these topics just skip it an move on.......................... hope you have some interesting viewpoints...
    Maarten - So I am either curious, or just plain nosey; but I don't like these sort of topics and nearly did move on. My first instinct was that your question was naive, unanswerable, and I certainly didn't have an interesting viewpoint. However:

    I then looked at your website and really enjoyed it and was left wanting more [lots more actually]. I'm still confused by the uncertainty behind your question because I cannot reconcile it with the confidence of your wonderful images. Unless you've changed direction and are less comfortable with 'art wobble' than you were; I'd have thought the obvious choice for you would be to travel tall and carry light. M8 in common language, so you can walk your talent - not a camera load.

    You're lucky to be able to pose the choice, but in your shoes I'd take the M8 without hesitation [providing it is problem free]. See, I said I wouldn't have an interesting viewpoint, but better than that - I had interest in your work. Have a productive trip.

    ................. Chris

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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    Maarten,

    I own both also.

    I love the D3 for low light, Macro, telephoto, and sports. I hate the size.

    For a vacation and travel, there is no doubt in my mind which one I would take. The M8 with fast glass. 640 ISO, fast glass, rangefinder vs. SLR shake, a small tabletop tripod (either the Leica or Novoflex version), are perfect for travel. Travel light and easy, enjoy the trip.

    Unless you are going for photography only, there is no reason to carry the BIG GUN.

    Best,

    Ray

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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    On the other hand, if you had a D300 with some fast primes that would be in contention vs. the M8.

    A D300 with a 28/2.0 Zeiss and 50/2.0 Macro Zeiss make a very nice size package that is not much bigger than an M8. You would have better higher ISO performance up to 1600 is about the 640 on the M8. Flash is also much better in the Nikon system. This gives you an effective 35 & 75 which have always been great combos on an M rangefinder.

    Just something to think about.

    Best,

    Ray

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    Member Maarten's Avatar
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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris C View Post
    Maarten - So I am either curious, or just plain nosey; but I don't like these sort of topics and nearly did move on. My first instinct was that your question was naive, unanswerable, and I certainly didn't have an interesting viewpoint. However:

    I then looked at your website and really enjoyed it and was left wanting more [lots more actually]. I'm still confused by the uncertainty behind your question because I cannot reconcile it with the confidence of your wonderful images. Unless you've changed direction and are less comfortable with 'art wobble' than you were; I'd have thought the obvious choice for you would be to travel tall and carry light. M8 in common language, so you can walk your talent - not a camera load.

    You're lucky to be able to pose the choice, but in your shoes I'd take the M8 without hesitation [providing it is problem free]. See, I said I wouldn't have an interesting viewpoint, but better than that - I had interest in your work. Have a productive trip.

    ................. Chris
    Thanks for the compliments, Chris. I have used many types of camera's for the pictures on my main site (www.maartenboerma.com). From 4x5" to a Sony P200 (which is really fun to use). No Leica M used on any of those although I've been using a M6 for years.

    The uncertainty comes from the fact that I don't want to make a "mistake" choosing one over the other. But actually now I think of it your comments and answers makes it really clear for me that it doesn't matter which camera system I take with me. I just have to adapt and be creative. Of course one situation would beg for a macro of tele lens of for a view camera. But like many I often fall into the trap of "needing" something different then I have.

    Thanks for the kind comments. I'll post a link to the results after the trip (if they are worth it). Which be in the beginning of June.
    Maarten Boerma
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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    HI Maarten
    I can put myself in your boat exactly, as I also have both cameras.

    The answer my friend is screamingly obvious.

    Take them both! The M8 and a couple of lenses weighs so little. You don't have to carry the D3 around with you all the time.

    I hear what Guy says, in fact, I think the M8 files just have the edge in perfect conditions. . . . . but sticking the D3 on to auto-iso and aperture priority and banging away . . . .

    Definitely both - just don't carry both around with you all the time!
    Hi Jono,

    I think it is too much for me to take both. I will then probably take out on of the camera's and use that one for the whole trip (like I do with my shoes) and when I unpack my stuff at home I wonder why I took it with me. Maybe it is better to take my small Sony P200 or buy something small new in Japan (I wonder if they have any cameras in the shops there ) if I feel I need it.

    Thanks,
    Maarten Boerma
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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    Hi Ray,

    Thanks for the suggestion. I think I know what my choice is going to be. It will be the M8. I have very light and compact Gitzo travel tripod which I take with me. Travel light is a good advise and don't look back on the choices made once I'm there.

    Regards,
    Maarten Boerma
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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    I am planning a trip to Japan is a year and a half. I plan on taking both my M8 and D300 (coming soon) for the trip. One Lowepro backpack with a small laptop (HP tx2000 if I still have it) rounds out the kit. The plan is using the M8 for cities and landscapes and the D300 for tele/action type photos.
    Carlos Echenique | Carlos Echenique Photography |Olympus OM-D E-M1 MK II | Olympus Pen-F - M.Zuiko 17mm f/1.8, M.Zuiko 25mm f/1.8, M.Zuiko 45mm f/1.8, Rokinon 12mm f/2 NCS, M.Zuiko 75mm f/1.8, M.Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8 PRO, M.Zuiko 40-150mm f/2.8 PRO

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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    Carlos,

    I admit to cheating on trips like this and even leaving the laptop at home. I just take a bunch of cards and my new HyperSpace Color Zero.

    Best,

    Ray

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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    For me this is an easy choice. Most of your opportunities will be on the street and following your daily activities. This is where the M8 is near perfect. You generally need fast,wide angle lenses again the M8. I have a travel kit for street shooting 2 M8s and 4-6 lenses plus my MacBook Pro 15 this all fits in a Billingham large hadley or most any messenger style bag . All the rest is in a roll style carryon or if its a longer trip a rolling duffle. The point is mobility and here the M8 it all over my D3. The other advantage is that its so much more discrete .....point a D3 at the wrong situation and you may have a problem. The M8 isn t as small as a point and shoot but its close. The other thing I use is vest (or a jacket) ...I put the extra lenses in the pockets and use 2 cameras ..no bag. I took my DMR to europe twice last summer and really never needed it ..plus I had to worry about it when I wasn t carrying it.

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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    Quote Originally Posted by harmsr View Post
    Carlos,

    I admit to cheating on trips like this and even leaving the laptop at home. I just take a bunch of cards and my new HyperSpace Color Zero.

    Best,

    Ray
    Ermm, what pray tell is a HyperSpace Color Zero and can you provide a link to it?
    Carlos Echenique | Carlos Echenique Photography |Olympus OM-D E-M1 MK II | Olympus Pen-F - M.Zuiko 17mm f/1.8, M.Zuiko 25mm f/1.8, M.Zuiko 45mm f/1.8, Rokinon 12mm f/2 NCS, M.Zuiko 75mm f/1.8, M.Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8 PRO, M.Zuiko 40-150mm f/2.8 PRO

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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    Carlos,

    It is basically a fast card reader, hard drive, and a small but reasonable screen. (think Epson P-5000) However, this one works with the Nikon D-3 and M8 files.

    Here is a link.

    http://www.hyperdrive.com/SearchResults.asp?Cat=42

    Best,

    Ray

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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    I've tried various devices of that type and found them to be problematic to my workflow (altering file names, EXIF data etc..). Decided to stick with the laptop which allows me to batch upload my images home via FTP.
    Carlos Echenique | Carlos Echenique Photography |Olympus OM-D E-M1 MK II | Olympus Pen-F - M.Zuiko 17mm f/1.8, M.Zuiko 25mm f/1.8, M.Zuiko 45mm f/1.8, Rokinon 12mm f/2 NCS, M.Zuiko 75mm f/1.8, M.Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8 PRO, M.Zuiko 40-150mm f/2.8 PRO

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    Re: Ahumm.. Trip to Japan: M8 or D3

    Weight...your gear will begin to weigh a ton by mid-day. you might be reluctant to try out the various lenses you might take with the D3.

    If I was in your place i would just take the M8. However, I do have a backup for it..just in case!!

    While i have not had nikon fail on me ( neither the M8 ), but if it did, the weight of a dead nikon and dead lenses would be too much to carry!

    Travel light and enjoy Japan.

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