One of the "problems" created by the purchase of the Sony a850 and the subsequent discovery of its abilities is how it leaves everything else I use. Shortly before the camera was even on my radar I had decided to upgrade and add to my m4/3 and Leica M9 systems, believing that I would be mainly using them for the bulk of my work, with the Pentax K-5 as a very able addition for low-light and commercial DSLR work. Since the Sony has proved itself so able for much of what I do and in combination with the 28-75mm lens capable of excellent low-light work, added to the fact that I do seem to be able to carry it around with no particular discomfort, it puts a question mark against my other cameras and lenses.
The Pentax has now gone to a new home, but that leaves quite extensive systems based around my Panasonic GH2 and GF1 and my Fuji X100 lookalike, the Leica M9.
Regarding m4/3 I do need a backup system, plus something for video, and the GH2 handles that nicely. GF1's are hardly fetching great S/H prices in the UK since they are currently selling for £199 body only, so its not worth selling that. I may look at whether I keep all the lenses however.
It did occur to me that a positive effect of all this is that I could now use the Leica M9 in the way I've always wanted. While previously it has been my highest quality camera I have felt almost obligated to use it for general stock/library work. It does however lend itself to and lead me into the area of more personal and less obviously commercially orientated work. For example I've always wanted to use it with just one lens. The lens in question is the Zeiss 50mm f/2 Planar, which is the best quality optic I've ever bought. I've had a couple of go's at using this on its own, but because I've been using the M9 primarily as a camera for my landscape/architecture/travel images, I've been taking other lenses with me, and have even extended my options for it with the Zeiss 18mm I bought recently.
Its not that I feel uncomfortable or restricted using just one lens, quite the opposite in fact, but a little nagging voice always seems to say "what if?"
One of the reasons I was considering the Fuji X100 was to add this one lens, rangefinder type photography into what I do. It was however based on a different future scenario that no longer exists. I'm probably now no longer considering it, though I do have to negotiate my way past the Fujifilm stand at the Focus on Imaging show on Tuesday!
I've always been pleased with my Leica + 1 images and I'm interested to go back to this way of working to see what I can come up with. Its a common thing for full-time photographers to pursue their own inclinations and preferred ways of working from time to time and is generally thought of as beneficial and a way of refreshing what we do. To be honest, I do it far less than I should, and its about time I made more time for it.
To that end I took a few low light f/2 test shots with the Zeiss last night, having realised that I haven't really done that very much at all.
I use it outdoors locked on f/8 or f/11 most of the time. Its actually very good at f/2!! Its time to be a little more creative I think.