Best compact set up


asgr

Link Posted 16/08/2011 - 23:24
Okay, so having got some fairly compact primes I started wondering about the best compact set up you could buy. The caveat is that it can be cross platform, so no problem with paring a Pentax 40mm with the Panasonic GF2 (although that would make for an odd weak tele set up).

Factors are not just how small the system is, but how good the IQ will be, how useful the focal length and how expensive.

A friend of mine has just bought the GF2 with the 14mm pancake, but I think the Sony NEX + 21mm Pentax Pancake should beat this into the dust (at a price!)

Any other obvious set ups? And has anybody done this for real? I'm curious how beatable the x100 is...
K7 + wet weather gear Some of my pics

johnriley

Link Posted 16/08/2011 - 23:53
An odd question indeed, to which there is no obvious answer. All system decisions are a balance of compromises and it depends upon where the user pitches the relative value of different features and benefits.
Best regards, John

Don

Link Posted 17/08/2011 - 00:33
I'd wait until the Q hits shelves and the reviews are in before deciding on this one....
Fired many shots. Didn't kill anything.

Smeggypants

Link Posted 17/08/2011 - 03:26
johnriley wrote:
An odd question indeed, to which there is no obvious answer. All system decisions are a balance of compromises and it depends upon where the user pitches the relative value of different features and benefits.

Although I don't see it as an "odd question", I do agree with John on the rest of his points.


There certainly isn't an obvious answer?


What do you want a compact for?

I chose a compact that would give me as much discretion as possible. I love candid and street shots and capturing life. I'm pretty bold when it comes to shooting in most situations and aren't shy of wielding a couple of DSLR bodies with big lenses stuck on them.

However there are some scenarios where this will be frowned upon. Shops for example, or areas where you're likely to get mugged for your camera.

I chose a compact that was as inconspicuous as possible. I.e somethign that didn't have a sticky out lens and looked pretty much the same as a mobile phone.

I chose the little Sony cams. I first bought a DSC-T900, but the sensor was frankly rubbish.

This year I bought a Sony DSC TX-5. it uses the same sensor as the forthcoming Pentax Q, the Exmor R.




I've thought about an X100, an APS-C compact and that Fuji looks great, but it still looks like a cam and I couldn't get away with it in situations where the Sony TX5 is discrete.

Everyone carries a mobile phone so there's no photography angst against them in today's climate of silly terror paranoia.

So really it depends on your specific requirements.

My TX5 cost me £180 new. In optimal conditions it takes more than satisfactory pics. Even ISO800 is OK for regular viewing size. The most important factor is it allows me to get away with snapping in situations where any other cam would attract the wrong attention. And that last factor is a deal breaker.
[i]Bodies: 1x K-5IIs, 2x K-5, Sony TX-5, Nokia 808
Lenses: Pentax DA 10-17mm ED(IF) Fish Eye, Pentax DA 14mm f/2.8, Sigma 17-70mm f/2.8, Pentax-A 28mm f/2.8, Sigma 30mm F1.4 EX DC, Pentax-A 50mm f/1.2, Pentax-A 50mm f/1.4, Pentax-FA 50mm f/1.4, Pentax-A 50mm f/1.7, Pentax DA* 50-135mm f/2.8, Sigma 135-400mm APO DG, and more ..
Flash: AF-540FGZ, Vivitar 283

ChrisR

Link Posted 17/08/2011 - 10:32
asgr wrote:
Okay, so having got some fairly compact primes I started wondering about the best compact set up you could buy. The caveat is that it can be cross platform, so no problem with paring a Pentax 40mm with the Panasonic GF2 (although that would make for an odd weak tele set up).

Factors are not just how small the system is, but how good the IQ will be, how useful the focal length and how expensive.

A friend of mine has just bought the GF2 with the 14mm pancake, but I think the Sony NEX + 21mm Pentax Pancake should beat this into the dust (at a price!)

Any other obvious set ups? And has anybody done this for real? I'm curious how beatable the x100 is...

Hi Aaron.

As a pocket, carry anywhere camera, I purchased a Panasonic LX3, which has now been superseded by the LX5.

I find the LX3, very good, I had to purchase an optical view finder though, as could not see the screen in bright light. Did not purchase the Panasonic view finder at the £200.00, mark, but a “Helios”, from Mr Cad, at £20.00. It is not exactly the correct field of view to match the camera, but at that price saving , I can put up with a compromise.

Take care.

Chris R.
Chris R.

I. El. (Eng). (Rtd).

johnriley

Link Posted 17/08/2011 - 10:42
I'm not sure we're answering the original question here, which as I read it is suggesting an optimum body/lens combination of any makes. A speculative situation.

So I suppose you could do something actually possible, such as an SMC Pentax-FA 43mm f1.9 Limited lens on a Leica M9. That would be as close to the Cartier-Bresson as you could get I think.

However, the irony is that you would get as good if not better results by putting it on a K-r.

Expensive digital bodies are not necessarily any better than the better DSLRs. That includes the X100 as well, which is OK but not stellar, judging from the technical reports I've seen so far.
Best regards, John

asgr

Link Posted 17/08/2011 - 12:12
The question I'm interested in is what compact system would a keen SLR user like to have. For most this won't simply be a compact camera. The M9 is straight out in my opinion because it certainly is not compact.

I've been very impressed with the x100 pictures. The Q will struggle for my favour due to lack of shallow DoF in the raw files. I'm waiting to have a play with my friends new GF2, but this seems like a nice system from what I've seen so far.
K7 + wet weather gear Some of my pics

johnriley

Link Posted 17/08/2011 - 12:27
The trouble with CSCs is that they may be more compact than a DSLR, but they are not compact enough to mean we can do without a camera bag. So there is really very little advantage - the cameras themselves are much more fiddly than a DSLR. If some people find Pentax DSLRs too small, as some do, then they certains won't like CSCs.

AS things stand for the forseeable future, if we need a DSLR then that's the choice and we just go for the most compact one. K-r plus lens. 40mm will do nicely if ultra-compact is required.

If we need smaller, then the Q looks good, but the very small format will mean more DOF. At least the f1.9 lens will help in this respect.
Best regards, John

Pentaxophile

Link Posted 17/08/2011 - 12:29
For me the nex cameras are appealing. The new budget model has the same sensor as the k5. But I see it as a dslr replacement. As a secondary camera to a dslr like the k7 (which is hardly massive) I'd be looking for a true compact.
[link=https://500px.com/will_brealey/[/link]

johnriley

Link Posted 17/08/2011 - 13:08
You seem to be answering the wrong thread Bill?
Best regards, John

wvbarnes

Link Posted 17/08/2011 - 13:12
Thanks John,

deleted, must be my age.

On topic I've personally moved up through Kodak Easyshare compacts in 2003, through a Minolta A200 bridge camera, via a Canon G9 to Pentax DSLR's today.

If Pentax manages anything like the Canon G9 I'll be at the front of the queue. Otherwise i'll stick with my 'compact' KR

Steep

Link Posted 17/08/2011 - 13:23
asgr wrote:
The Q will struggle for my favour due to lack of shallow DoF in the raw files.

I can't see how choice of file type would affect Depth of Field, did you mean something else?

asgr

Link Posted 17/08/2011 - 13:56
They've invented some conversion jiggery-pokery that can increase the apparent DoF, but this will obviously only be the case for the jpeg output. The raw will still be raw (i.e. huge DoF, even with f 1.9). The Nex already has this DoF software on it, and it seems to work okay I have to say.
K7 + wet weather gear Some of my pics

Smeggypants

Link Posted 17/08/2011 - 15:57
asgr wrote:
They've invented some conversion jiggery-pokery that can increase the apparent DoF, but this will obviously only be the case for the jpeg output. The raw will still be raw (i.e. huge DoF, even with f 1.9). The Nex already has this DoF software on it, and it seems to work okay I have to say.

if you want top increase DOF why not just use a smaller aperture?
[i]Bodies: 1x K-5IIs, 2x K-5, Sony TX-5, Nokia 808
Lenses: Pentax DA 10-17mm ED(IF) Fish Eye, Pentax DA 14mm f/2.8, Sigma 17-70mm f/2.8, Pentax-A 28mm f/2.8, Sigma 30mm F1.4 EX DC, Pentax-A 50mm f/1.2, Pentax-A 50mm f/1.4, Pentax-FA 50mm f/1.4, Pentax-A 50mm f/1.7, Pentax DA* 50-135mm f/2.8, Sigma 135-400mm APO DG, and more ..
Flash: AF-540FGZ, Vivitar 283

thoughton

Link Posted 17/08/2011 - 16:45
I think asgr meant to say 'reduce the dof', and is possibly talking about these newer cameras with a 'bokeh' mode.
Tim
AF - Pentax K5, Sigma 10-20/4-5.6, Tamron 17-50/2.8, Sigma 30/1.4, Sigma 70-200/2.8, Tamron 70-300/4-5.6
MF - Vivitar CF 28/2.8, Tamron AD2 90/2.5, MTO 1000/11
Stuff - Metz 58 AF1, Cactus v4, Nikon SB24, Raynox 150, Sigma 1.4x TC, Sigma 2x TC, Kenko 2x macro TC, Redsnapper 283 tripod, iMac 27”, Macbook Pro 17”, iPad, iPhone 3G
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