Should You Buy a Leica T ?

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Leica this morning announced its rumored Leica T. At the same time, several Leica beta-testers and Leica-oriented bloggers published their reviews.

Very quickly: the T is a 16-megapixel, APS-C mirrorless – but not a rangefinder – camera with AF, a new lens mount and two new lenses available at launch. It costs $1,850. The lenses are a 23mm f/2 prime (35mm equivalent) at $1,950 and a 16-56mm f3.5-5.6 at $1,750.

Being devoid of Leica – or any other brand – love and lacking an enormous audience, I have not seen or stroked this new masterpiece. What I have done, my dear reader, is read a bunch of those reviews and come to some quick conclusions. [Read more…]

Fujifilm X-T1 Review; Bit of Sony A7R & Olympus E-M1 Thrown In

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On my desk, between the keyboard and my monitors are three goodies: the Fujifilm X-T1, the Sony A7R and the Olympus OM-D E-M1. Take the best of each, combine that and you’ll get the near-perfect camera. Fat chance of that happening, so I’ll forget that thought and focus mostly on the newest of the bunch, the Fuji.

I’ve been shooting with it only for a little over a week and only with one lens, the 35mm f/1.4. They’re both rentals. I picked the 35mm lens because it has a good reputation and because I have equivalent lenses for my Sony and my Olympus, so I could make some fair comparisons. More about that later.

I was really looking forward to the Fuji. It just looks right for a guy like me, who grew up with cameras that had dials for stuff that was important. Dials that meant something. More importantly, dials that did only ONE thing. In modern cameras, one dial can have multiple functions and you have to remember all of them.

So the Fuji looked right. The right size, the right color (I’m a big fan of black), the right dials, even some lenses with real aperture rings. Awesome. This looked like a camera I had been waiting for. [Read more…]

Paris with Three Cameras

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What Else? – Olympus OM-D E-M5 with 12mm f2.0 Lens

Ah, Paris in summer. A glass of pastis on a sidewalk terrace, strolling along des Champs-Élysées, lounging at the Seine… queueing at the Eiffel tower, elbowing to the Mona Lisa, sweating through the Versailles palace.

I love Paris, I really do. But like any great city, I like it for its atmosphere on the streets, in the cafes. Its hustle. Its bustle. But a visit after an absence of two decades, meant trodding along the overcrowded tourist paths. In August, the Parisians leave for quieter realms and the tourists take over the city.

So, photographing the city and its – remaining – people while also playing tourist was my calling. Still, I wanted to use this visit to try out various cameras and lenses I had bought in the last couple of months: the Sony RX-1, the Olympus OM-D E-M5 and the Fujifilm X100S. This was also my first city trip in years without a DSLR.

[Read more…]