Nikon D800E - Contract negotiations concluded


A couple of days ago I announced that with the arrival of the GH3, most of my cameras were destined for ebay. I included the Nikon D800E in that cull. I did think shortly after publishing that post that I had been somewhat rash, but in the spirit of blogging that I outlined yesterday, I let it stand, since once I make an article go live I will only go back to correct innacuracies or the spelling and grammar mistakes that I spot.

I've written before that, in my opinion, the D800E is the best digital camera ever made. In fact I would go further than that. When you take into account the image size and quality, the versatility and options the camera provides to handle pretty much everything and its current price, I believe that this is nothing short of the best two dimensional image creating device yet invented by man, that we can buy. I suspect some of the cameras in spy satellites might be better quality, but I'm not aware of NASA putting any of those on ebay. So the question is why would I sell something like that? And that indeed is a good question and one that I will answer today by saying that my intention to put the camera on the transfer list was somewhat premature and I'm pretty sure I can find a place in the team for it after all.

However, I suspect that it will taking up a new role. My problem with it is the ridiculously heavy monster of a zoom lens that I carry around with it. The 28-300mm VR. Great lens it may be, it is a beast and a burden to walk with. Now interestingly, if I'd bothered to read my own blog, I would have seen that there is an alternative. Back in September I wrote this glowing piece about how good the 50mm f/1.8D lens I have is with the camera. It was my "new best friend" and I couldn't wait to get out with it again. Those of you who notice these things may have become aware that its been a bit of wait for me to renew my aquaintance with my supposed new great buddy. And of course that is the nature of being who and what I am. A fickle, fly by night dilettante, with the consistency of morning mist should just about cover it!

However, in a blinding flash of inspiration, it came to me. If the zoom lens is so heavy and stopping me using the camera, why not sell it and pair the D800E with a lens that doesn't seem destined to fuse my spinal chord together? I am after all a great fan of standard lenses and bang on about how versatile they are all the time. And so it came to pass that I decided yesterday to go out and do just that.






All images Nikon D800E, Nikkor 50mm f/1.8D

So why, you might ask, do I get myself in these situations in the first place? What seems to prevent me from making sensible rational decisions? Well I believe its as a result of my background and early life (Sound familiar?) When I was growing up, my family wasn't anywhere near what might be described as well-off. Not quite in the Monty Python "Luxury, we used to dream of living in sceptic tank" class but money was tight. If I wanted to buy something or have something bought for me, it usually meant a lot of saving or hire purchase (remember that?) or going without something else. Plus top of the range anything was out of the question. That included a bicycle, a guitar, a record player. As time passed and I left University and started work, my circumstances gradually improved and I'm now what might be described as "comfortably off." Far from rich, but I'm not going to be fighting people for a warm spot beneath the railway arches anytime soon. So half of me reacts by thinking, I can afford the best now, I'm going to buy it. The other half thinks, that is pure indulgence and decadence and morally wrong. Consequently I currently have 9 cameras but am constantly trying (and failing) to get this down to one or two, mainly because of guilt. That is of course without the four bicycles, four guitars, four computers, two televisions, and five complete hi-fi systems. Though I don't seem to feel quite the same about those as I do about my cameras.

So there is this constant battle with myself that surfaces every time I buy some new photographic gear. There is this inner voice that says. "OK, if I buy this new camera (or expensive lens), then everything else has to go" I do of cause lie to myself and agree to this condition, however when it actually comes to parting with something, then thats when the conflict starts. Some cameras are easy to sell. The D600 wasn't much of a problem. It was very much an impulse buy anyway and in future I'll make sure I'm not hanging around a shopping centre with a Jessops in it, with an hour to kill as Ann goes off to do something else and casually say, "I'll just pop down and have a look at the cameras for a bit then" The D600 is a great camera, but it doesn't do anything for me that improves on the D800E for what I shoot. I don't need the better high ISO, the extra speed and its not that much lighter to make much of a difference, so it is now with a new owner.

There are also some other cameras that will be going. Mostly m4/3. Much as I like the Pens, I think the E-PL5 and E-PL3 will be on their way soon, likewise the GX1 and G5. Since the OM-D and GH3 plus grips give me 5 different camera configurations, I don't see much point in keeping the others. Despite my reservations about the lens range, my NEX-7 will be staying and the NEX-6 will probably go. Both the E-PL5 and NEX-6 are the results of what I wrote about in my 4,000,000 and counting post when I talked about being in the situation to be able to try things out without really wanting them. 

The GH3 is somewhat different. I've lusted after it ever since I saw the first pictures. Despite telling myself I really didn't need it and in fact trying to convince my nephew the other day (or convince myself if truth be told) that I wasn't going to buy it, I knew deep down that I just couldn't resist it.

So the plan is, (for today at least!) OM-D, GH3, NEX-7, DP2M, D800E. Should keep me happy for a hour or two!!

N.B. to see more on the cameras and lenses featured in this post click on the relevant labels (tags and keywords) below.

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