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Too much choice - what to do?

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 NathanP 17:57 Wed

I always enjoyed photography, mostly landscapes, buildings and climbing. I've had more time recently to play about with it more and I'm starting to think my line up of cameras is less than ideal but not sure what to do about it.

I have an Olympus Tough TG4 as my playing in the water and climbing camera. It also takes great macro photos so that is definitely a keeper. The question is what to do about the other two.

I have had a Panasonic LX100 Mk 1 since soon after they came out and I really like that. As well as the convenient size, I like the control layout, level of manual control. Along with general photography, I've enjoyed using it for long exposures with an ND filter and time lapse. The only downside is lack of reach with the 70mm max zoom.

Over lockdown I have been playing about with an old Canon EOS 40D. I have three lenses for that: the kit 50mm, a Sigma DL 70-300 f4-5.6 and a Sigma APO 170-500 f5-6.3. I've especially enjoyed using the long zoom lens to take wildlife photos and would like to do more of that but the long lens is soft at larger apertures whilst the 40D has a max ISO of only 1600 and a relatively small pixel count so it is hard to avoid long exposures and cropping down doesn't work well. It also creeps under its own weight when pointing down so, if you are carrying it on a neck strap, the lens hood just about hits your knees. The 40D and lenses are just too bulky and heavy to carry just in case so I miss good potential photos.

Ideally I'd like to swap to a compact mirrorless system but that looks expensive and I don't think I'd get much for the old Canon or Sigma kit, or even my beloved LX100. My other idea was to get a Canon 7D II in place of the 40D for the much higher ISO and pixel count and keep everything else - but that does nothing to reduce the camera count or the bulk and awkwardness of the Canon-Sigma combination. My wife also has a Canon 550D so there is a bit of synergy in sharing lenses. 

What do people advise, assuming a budget to change of up to £1000?

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In reply to NathanP:

I've recently shifted from an Olympus M10, which I didn't get on with, to a Canon M6 mk II, which I really like.  It's small, light and, because I'm familiar with Canon, much easier for me to use.  Takes good pictures too.

Whilst the M6 mk II might be stretching your budget, other cameras in the M range may be worth looking at.  The small and light form factor works and while M-mount lenses won't be compatible with what you have, there are plenty of adaptors around so that you can use the lenses you've already got.

It'd be worth you having a look at them and what you might get new or used for your money.  At worst you'll be better informed and you might just find they're what you want.

T.

Post edited at 18:47
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 HeMa 18:28 Wed
In reply to NathanP:

You should be able to get a good 2nd hand mirrorless with a few quality lenses. 
 

if you’re into video at all (you didn’t mention this, so omit this if yer not). GH4 can be had for peanuts. 
 

if video is not s priority, I’d look into Oly PEN series or perhaps a Fuji. Oly PEN (and other MFT) have the option for numerous lenses and option to use non native lenses with adapters. Fuji is from What I can tell even nicer, but native lens collection is small and spendy (but really good).

note that for landscapes and architecture you can easily live with full manual vintage lenses. Depending on the kind of climbing stuff, autofocus etc. Could prove useful. 

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 65 19:04 Wed
In reply to NathanP:

With that budget you could get a 2ndhand Fuji XT-2 and a couple of lenses or a lens plus possibly a smart adapter for some of your existing lenses, which is what I'd do in your shoes.

The 7D2 is a terrific camera but leans towards sports and wildlife.

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 Myfyr Tomos 21:25 Wed
In reply to 65:

Agree with what's being said about second hand kit, £1000 is a substantial budget. MPB and Wex are two that should fulfill your every need, be it DSLR, mirrorless and glass. Wonderful companies to deal with - others are available.

Post edited at 21:47
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 NathanP 22:04 Wed
In reply to NathanP:

Thanks very much for the replies. That gives me a few things to look at. 

The only thing that puts me off the M6 II (apart from price) is the lack of a viewfinder. I suppose I should have said at the start but my preferences are to have a built in eyepiece viewfinder, back button focus and as many as possible of aperture, shutter speed, ISO and exposure comp with dial controls rather than having to go through the menus. I'll have a look at the other M-series though.

I do like the look of the GH4. Although video isn't a priority, I guess there would be some carry over of what I'm used to with the LX100. Also I have a suitable flash for TTL that I thnk would still be useable with that.

The Fuji XT-2 also looks good. I like the dedicated dials. It is actually wanting to get into wildlife photography with long lenses that is the main driver for thinking of changing from what I already have - would the 7D2 be the best way to go with that as a priority?

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 Marek 00:01 Thu
In reply to NathanP:

My wife was also looking for a small-wildlife (birds) setup. She tried a Sigma 150-600 on my old Canon 550d and declared "No way am I carrying that around!". Eventually settled on a Lumix G9 (micro 4/3) with the 100-400mm lens - half the weight, half the size, phenomenally good image stabilisation (in body + in lens) and 60 picture/second pre-burst mode (i.e., it starts taking pictures before you press the shutter release). For big wildlife in low light (e.g., bears), I'll still opt for my Canon 6d + 80-200 f2.8, but otherwise the Lumix system is fantastic.

I'd also recommend MPB for second hand - that's where my Canon stuff came from.

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 HeMa 05:32 Thu
In reply to Marek:

ah yeah.

if video is not a priority, the the G7/G9 might be a valid option (more photo focused).

if small form factor is nice, the perhaps GX8 should be looked into.

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 Paulhesketh 06:41 Thu
In reply to NathanP:

You could also consider Sony, the A6xxxx range second hand would also fit within your price bracket with enough dosh to buy a lens or two.

Post edited at 06:41
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 Snowdave 09:52 Thu
In reply to NathanP:

I have the Oly TG-4..best small camera out there IMHO...

To go bigger I actually stayed with Oly as their picture colour is different than other brands & liked it....so I went big time into their top M4/3s kit...

Now with all the ruckus over Oly selling to JIP & Panasonic maybe switching to APS-C... I'm not bothered as there are mases of second hand cameras etc still around & will continue to be so...plus out of warranty service is still available from good independent repairers. Their kit does the job & for £1,108 you could get a very nice set up!

OM-D E-M1 MKII used £659

https://www.ffordes.com/p/SH-18-029229/olympus-omd/om-d-e-m1-ii-body-only

12-40mm F2.8 Pro used £449

https://www.ffordes.com/p/SH-18-031797/micro-43rds/12-40mm-f28-mzuiko

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 65 12:42 Thu
In reply to NathanP:

If wildlife is a priority then the 7D2 wins. Have a google for 7D2 wildlife reviews. There are some long lenses available for it which will be within your budget too, just.
Another vote for MPB here, great company to deal with.

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In reply to NathanP:

> The Fuji XT-2 also looks good. I like the dedicated dials. It is actually wanting to get into wildlife photography with long lenses that is the main driver for thinking of changing from what I already have - would the 7D2 be the best way to go with that as a priority?

I have an X-T2 and use the XF 100-400 with it for wildlife. It is great lens with superb image stabilistation but is neither cheap nor light!

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 HeMa 13:43 Thu
In reply to Robert Durran:

> the XF 100-400 with it for wildlife. It is great lens with superb image stabilistation but is neither cheap nor light!

That tends to be the case... add in the word Full Frame and cheap plus light are not even in the same galaxy.

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 NathanP 07:08 Fri
In reply to NathanP:

Thanks all for the advice. That gives me a good (but not very short) shortlist. 

I had some time out yesterday with my current set up which reinforced how much I don't like the long Sigma lens. I think the eventual choice is going to be driven by a replacement long telephoto as much as by the camera.

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 Snowdave 08:37 Fri
In reply to NathanP:

> I had some time out yesterday with my current set up which reinforced how much I don't like the long Sigma lens. I think the eventual choice is going to be driven by a replacement long telephoto as much as by the camera.

M4/3s remember is half the size so when I stated 12-40mm that was the actual focal length.....however in 35mm size it has the same angle of view as a 24-80mm lens.....one of the reasons I swapped over...my 40-150mm f2,8..is nice & small...

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 kane8907 09:00 Fri

For a 1000 £ budget, Canon 7d2 might not include a warranty, and perhaps no lens included.

But the camera is wonderful fast in focusing and picture processing, It's very worthy to buy a camera body.

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 NathanP 16:47 Fri
In reply to kane8907:

I was thinking second hand. Wex have had some good 7d2s for around £700 for body only plus £800 for a decent used EF 100-400mm f4.5-5.6 L IS USM Lens (which has just sold) less whatever I can get for my existing Canon and Sigma kit. Probably still a bit over my budget. I'll have to weigh up the different options - none of them look cheap if I want a similar effective reach as my current set up.

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 Snowdave 09:22 Sat
In reply to NathanP:

> I'll have to weigh up the different options - none of them look cheap if I want a similar effective reach as my current set up.

I missed that bit..so upto (Sigma APO 170-500 f5-6.3). ..in M4/3rds thats 250mm..

To keep the price down to within budget...brand new Oly 70-300mm f4.8-6.7..£419

https://www.ffordes.com/p/11013118454561/micro-43rds/75-300mm-f48-67-ed-ii-mzuiko

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In reply to NathanP:

 I have a  Canon  EF 100-400mm f4.5-5.6 L IS USM Lens

It is certainly a lot sharper than my Sigma 'Bigma' 50-500mm was, but it does need a touch of stopping down at the long end - at f/8 its pretty good. I think this is typical of the model.

Anyway, I barely use it so you could have it for £700 if you want.

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 NathanP 18:20 Sun
In reply to Dan Arkle:

Thanks very much, I'll bear that in mind as a good option. It might take me a while though to get my head round the different options though, let alone come to a decision!

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