Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Tamrac Travel Pack 73 Photo Backpack

After Donna and I got our new Olympus E-M5 cameras it became obvious that our current backpack, the ThinkTank Streetwalker Pro was way too large of a bag for our new camera system. While shopping at Best Buy the other night we took a look at the bags they had to offer. After spending several minutes looking at their various offerings we ended up buying the Tamrac 5373 Travel Pack 73 Photo Digital SLR Camera Backpack (Black).

Outside of backpack

Yesterday I had a chance to see how well the bag would hold our gear and I'm happy to report that it will easily hold 2X E-M5's with grips installed, along with the 3 lenses we currently own: 14-42, 12-50, and 40-150 zooms. As you can see from the picture below it holds our current gear and still has some room for expansion.

Loaded with our current gear.

I wanted to see what else would fit in the bag besides our camera gear so I got out our Kindle Fire and iPad. The Kindle easily fits on the side pocket after moving the one lens and the bag is large enough to hold the iPad as well. Given that we have covers on each of those items I'm not concerned that the backpack doesn't have a dedicated pocket for either of them.

Loaded with the gear and Kindle Fire

Loaded with the gear and The New iPad (What a stupid name Apple!)

On Sunday I'll be leaving on a trip to Japan for work. I will be taking my E-M5, two rental prime lenses (Olympus 12mm and Panasonic 25mm) along with either the 12-50 or 40-150 zoom. I'll bring the Kindle Fire along as well. When I get back from my trip I'll post a follow up on how well the bag performed on my trip. If you're interested in small camera backpack and want to order one through Amazon I'd appreciate it if you'd use the link below. It's my affiliate link and if you use it and buy the backpack I'll earn a small commission.

Read The Followup Post

Monday, May 28, 2012

Olympus OM-D E-M5 Aspect Ratios

One of the features that appealed to me about the Olympus OM-D E-M5 was its ability to shoot in various aspect ratios. I know you can use cropping as part of post processing to do the same thing but that does not allow you to see the results immediately in camera. The E-M5 supports 5 different aspect ratios: 4:3 (default), 16:9, 3:2, 1:1, and 3:4. One feature I really like is if you are shooting in RAW format, which is what I use, the camera actually creates two images. The RAW file shot in the default aspect ratio and a JPG with the selected aspect ratio applied. The best part is the camera automatically creates the JPG file for you, you don't have to set the camera in RAW/JPG mode. Depending on which aspect ratio you the images will be sized as follows:
4:3 - 4608x3456
16:9 - 4608x2592
3:2 - 4608X3072
1:1 - 3456x3456
3:4 - 2592x3456

Below are samples of each aspect ratio. These were shot with my E-M5, mounted on a tripod, using the M.Zuiko Digital ED 14-42mm f3.5-5.6 II R lens (what is it with Olympus and these crazy long names for everything!). You can click on each image to view a larger version of it. The aspect ratio used is shown below each photo.

4:3 Aspect Ratio

16:9 Aspect Ratio

3:2 Aspect Ratio

1:1 Aspect Ratio

3:4 Aspect Ratio

So does one aspect ratio look better to you than others? Although I normally shoot in the default aspect ratio of 4:3 I really like the square look of the 1:1 aspect ratio.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Carolina Anole

Did you know that the red thing extended under his chin is called a dewlap? I didn't. it's purpose is to attract females. This guy hangs out on the fence in our back yard and from time to time I'll see him crawling along the fence, pausing, extending his dewlap, and then moving on and doing it again. I guess he's on the prowl. Too bad I haven't seen any other Anole's around for him to hook up with. I'm sure he'll find a mate one of these days as our fence is connected with two additional fences so he has plenty of room to prowl.

I'm also using this as a test post to see how big of images I can upload without them looking funny on the blog. The first image below is 1000px along the long edge and the 2nd is 2000px. With all of the images here on the blog you can click on them to view a larger version. The picture was taken with my new camera the Olympus OM-D E-M5 using the 40-150 zoom lens. On the E-M5 that lens is equivalent to an 80-300 on a full frame camera. Overall I am extremely pleased with the E-M5. There are things it doesn't do as well as a DSLR but there are other ways in which, for me, it's a better camera than a DSLR. All of that stuff can be discussed later. For now just check out the Anole and his dewlap.

1000 px version

2000 px version

Sunday, May 20, 2012

LensProToGo 52 Week Photo Project - Week 20 Submission

My submission for week 20 themed "Jump"

Donna and I are jumping up in the air and our cat Tiger is jumping with fright. He didn't know what to make of the two fools jumping up and down in his back yard.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

LensProToGo 52 Week Photo Project - Week 19 Submission

My submission for week 19 themed "Shoes"

All this week I just knew I was going to take a picture of my shoes but seeing how I am just getting around to taking the photo and it's (1) it's Mother's Day and (2) it's our monthly anniversary of our first date which was on the 13th it only makes sense that I honor my wife and mother of the two children you see in the picture. Shown are shows for comfort, work, hiking, the beach, casual days, and play. I'll let you decide which pair of shoes are used for each purpose ;). Happy anniversary and mother's day to my wife Donna. I love you more than words could ever say.

LensProToGo 52 Week Photo Project - Week 18 Submission

My submission for week 17 themed "Shadows"

This was taken with my new Olympus OM-D E-M5 camera. Donna and I were taking a walk around the block and when I saw how long our shadows were I knew this was the shot I wanted. This photo was also selected to be included in the weekly LensProToGo recap.