my gear (at the moment)

I thought it might be interesting to show the gear I’m now using, at least semi regularly, or am starting to use this year.

I have 2 main cameras, my Nikon D3 and my Nikon D300s. The difference between the 2 is the sensor size. The D3 has a full size sensor, designated fx by Nikon. This means it is the same size as a piece of 35 mm film. Further, it means that if you use a 50 mm lens on it it is actually covering the same filed of view as on a 35 mm film camera. The pictures should match 1 to 1. The D300s on the other hand has a smaller sensor, called dx by nikon. Since the sensor is smaller the image thrown onto the sensor by the lens is being cropped into the center when compared to a film camera. This makes it look as though it is zoomed in, so the picture taken on the same 50 mm lens looks like it was taken with a 75 mm lens instead. This is the crop factor of 1.5 that they talk about. The upshot of this is that dx cameras have an advantage at the long end of the zoom spectrum, and thus are useful if you need to zoom more, and the fx cameras have an advantage on the short end of the zoom spectrum, giving you wider angles from a given lens.

The D3 has more advantages then that however. Since it has the same number of pixels captured on a much larger surface area, it gets much more light at a given photosite. This means there is much less noise and a much cleaner image is captured. Anyhow, the third dslr camera body pictured is my old D70, which has been altered to take only infrared pictures. In the middle, the small camera with the black strap is an HD Hero hidef video camera with a waterproof case. I’m planning on using this to take some videos of the canyons and climbing and other things I do. Beside it is my olympus stylus 770 SW, which is impact resistant and waterproof to 10 metres. The only problem with his nice little pocket camera is that in anything but very bright conditions the picture quality from it is questionable. Oh well.

Now obviously I don’t carry all of this stuff all of the time, but I decide what is needed on a given day and pack it up and lug it along. I might show my camera bags another day.

So, here is the list of the gear.

  1. Gitzo GT2540 tripod
  2. Nikon FX AF VR Nikkor 80-400mm 1:4.5-5.6D (translation, a slow 80-400mm full frame lens with vibration reduction)
  3. Nikon DX AF Fisheye Nikkor 10.5mm 1:2.6 G ED (translation, a 10.5 mm fisheye lens which only works on DX sensor)
  4. Nikon D70 altered for Infrared photography
  5. Nikon D300s
  6. Nikon DX AF-S Nikkor 18-200mm 1:3.5-5.6 G ED (a wonderful dx sized walk around lens covering the range of 27-300mm (18-200x the 1.5 multiplier))
  7. Really Right Stuff BH-55 Ballhead with B2 AS II clamp ( all my cameras have plates to mount on this permanently affixed to the bottoms)
  8. Go-Pro HD Hero head cam
  9. Nikon D3
  10. Nikon FX AF-S Nikkor 24-70mm 1:2.8G ED (sharp as a tack full frame lens in the regular focal range 24-70)
  11. Olympus Stylus 770 SW
  12. Aquatech waterproof housing for the D3, rated waterproof to 10 metres, so its not really a diving housing, but perfect for what I do
  13. Nikon FX AF-S Nikkor 14-24mm 1:2.6G ED (full frame wide angle)
  14. Nikon FX AF-S Micro Nikkor 105mm 1:2.8G ED (macro/portrait lens)
  15. Nikon FX AF-S VR Nikkor 70-200mm 1:2.8G ED ( my full frame long lens, I don’t tend to use the 80-400 since it is so slow to focus and also 4.5-5.6 aperture vs. 2.8 on the 70-200)
  16. Aquatech lens housing for the 24-70mm lens
  17. Aquatech lens housing for the 18-24 lens
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