Friday, November 30, 2012

A Mirrorless camera - Fuji XE1

Ever since i sold away my Panasonic GF1, i have never considered getting a mirrorless camera for my M mount lenses. My experience on GF1, a micro 4/3, was quite a disappointment. One of the major reason was the 2x crop factor that translate my 50mm lenses to 100mm.
It was pretty difficult to use it for these lenses and not to mention the manual focusing was a chore. Every 10 pictures, only 2 came out sharp. This was harder than shooting film.
So i dedicated these lenses to film camera only.

Well, while im indulging in the analog processes, the technology evolves once again. Within a few years, Sony Nex came out strong with an apsc sensor mirrorless camera...with a crop factor of 1.5x. As it launches more series and competitors started entering the apsc sensor mirrorless market, the price was alot more affordable.

With the recent launch of Sony Nex 6, i was really excited and determined to get one and while trying to justify which model to get, the 5N, 5R or 6...i went into a dilemma and a series of testing, trying and self convincing.

Do i need a viewfinder, do i need wifi, touch screen, do i need the articulating screen that allows me to take self portrait? Trying my best to distinguish the needs and wants among the many features that sony releases to enchant its customers.

I tried the Nex 6 on its first day of launch. I love it..i love the grip, i love how fast it goes, everything...but somehow im quite indecisive on which model to choose. The whole process keep repeating...over and over...looking at the images posted online etc, i am not very convinced that this is what i wanted.

A casual conversation with Fei one day, brought me back to the world of Fuji.
I have tried David's Xpro 1 before and i didnt quite like it. The images from the LCD is not convincing. The slow focusing and the limited functions did put me off and dropped the idea of owning it...least the camera is so expensive.

But i got a little curious on the improvement on the XE1 compared to the XPRO as well as Nex 6..and i quietly googled for some comparison..

My interest grew after looking at this comparison and like David said, i should give it a chance and test i went to a nearby camera store and tried it...The uncle was friendly when he opened a brand new set to let me hands on...
That short period of testing....make me released how slow the camera is compared to the Nex...i had so much complain about it...but yet when i went home, i just kept thinking about it...

In fact, i did not really try it thoroughly before i was convinced with the various pictures i saw online..and this particular blog helps in my decision...

Medina - 1 week with the XE1

And she shot a series on the recent Sandy hurricane

Medina did a good write up on it...and the next day, i was all prepared to buy it...and coincidentally, with the new kit lens set released, i managed to get a brand new kit set. I sold the kit lenses away immediately and uses the camera with a borrowed lens from David.

The camera looks really nice





And like most of my camera, i did the ceremony of concealing the excessives design..
IMG_5923's some test that i have gotten. The colors was from the camera without processing. I did slight editing such as cropping, vignette...

This camera handles high ISO well...and this image is from its Fujinon 18mm f2 lens @ iso 3200. I couldnt see the noise at all..

The following shots are not really test shots but most of them are from iso 2500 to 3200...

Using the Fujinon 35mm lens...this lens is really sharp and good...

The inbuilt B&W with yellow filter




I shot these with the Fuji m mount adapter and the canon 35mm f2
Night scenes are done easily at iso 3200




I did not have enough time to really shoot it much but definitely with these pictures, its enough to convince me that i had bought a great camera. We all know that Fuji has one of the best image quality and colors among other brands...but the ability to handle high iso and still make the picture usable is very impressive. Not even my Canon 60D can do so well compared to it.

But i must be frank here that, there are just too many technical handling of this camera that falls below expectations.

1) The Camera has very slow AF...i bet the ixus compact camera would have done a better focusing than the XE1 did.
2) There is no face detection mode and the auto AF spotting for subject is always inaccurate...well at least here we are not talking about function gimmick cameras..
3) The camera has a very weird sound when you half press the shutter button
4) The camera evf and LCD screen lags when you perform half press...even if you follow thru the action, its still secs slower....the good thing is even if it lags, the moment you click your shutter, you can still get the image
5) The camera body needs a proper just feels too insecure holding it without a strap.
6) The camera LCD screen feels cheap...i cannot understand why the LCD screen display looks worse than my compact camera....but thankfully, its not the true representation of what you get as the images looks 5x better on the monitor screen.
7) If you are looking at articulating screen, wifi, touch screen, hd video capability..then this camera might not be the one you are looking for....Sony Nex can do better here
8) It hunts....and even in good lighting, you can get the red box appearing when you do an AF focus.
9) I hate how the images are deleted from the lcd shows a "dissolve in" animation from powerpoint setting...
10) Finally i hate how this camera reacts..its always half a beat slower...


This camera has really nice output. The image colors are really nice. Many would say that colors should not be a major consideration as editing is possible...but what we all know and while some refuse to admit that although colors can be edited, you can never achieve a similar color, tone that is naturally out from an image.
Fuji called it Fineness...and i think its true!
This is also why companies are putting in a lot of efforts in their colorations..

The high ISO is remarkable and can compete with any of the top range DSLR with high ISO performanace..

As i shoot alot on films, im a little particular about details...this camera has alot more better details compared to the Nex series. Sad to say this, but the Nex image quality feels very m4/3 from what i see and tried (well nex was in my consideration for the longest and i studied them for very long)...well this is my personal opinion thou...

And its funny why with 10 Flaws and only 3 positive views, i would choose the XE1...
Its hard to explain here...but i know i did the right choice...after all, im an enthusiast and not a professional!

There is no perfect camera!

Friday, November 23, 2012

My Dairy farm visit

Located at Lim Chu Kang area, Hay Dairies is one of the biggest goat farm in Singapore.

The rusty No entry sign   Dairy Goat farm visit

Dairy Goat farm visit

Dairy Goat Farm

Dairy Goat farm visit

Seagull 4BI
Acros 100, Ilfosol3

How big is your cabinet?

My dry cabi

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Portraits from a Seagull

Some Portraits i took with the Seagull 4BI..

Although this TLR is not one of the favourite camera in the market, the sharpness and details from this camera are amazing.

Focusing with the split center focus screen is not easy but once locked on, its really sharp.
Took the pictures at Goods Poisons. and thanks to my friends who posed for these shots..(Sorry to those whom i missed the shots)
Portraits of friends

Portraits of friends

Portraits of friends


Seagull 4BI, Acros 100, Ilfosol3

Sunday, November 18, 2012

What are you shooting with today?

Definitely my noisy Flexaret and a test roll of Shanghai GP.. What are u using today?

Received my first present...thanks Benji!
What are u using today?

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Inle Lake - Serenity

This should be my last set of 6x6 square format done on Inle Lake. If you ask me, i do feel a sense of serenity each time i look at the Inle Lake pictures...and i hope you feel that too...

Hope that you have enjoyed the pictures taken from this trip...its definitely a nice place to visit and if you ever do, please share your pictures with me...

Inle Lake

Inle Lake

Inle Lake

Inle Lake

This rowing method is uniquely done by Inle lake locals...while it looks easy, it takes years of practise before you can do it correctly.Inle Lake

I love the views from my Resort.... The morning fog and mist creates an enchanted sight...
Inle Lake

Inle Lake

As the sky get darker and the night get colder, the whole mood changes again... Its good to have a bottle of beer by the lake at this time...and enjoy whatever is left before the lake get covered in darkness.
Inle Lake

Mamiya C220, 55mm f4 and 80mm f2.8
Kodak Portra 160VC 220mm

Monday, November 12, 2012

Colorful INLE Lake

Just when i thought that i would have under expose this roll of slides due to the cloudy weather that day, it turned out beautifully.
Inle Lake

Inle Lake

We happened to be there on the day for Hpuang Daw U Festival.
Inle Lake

Moving along the marsh to a local village
Inle Lake

At Taunggyi Market...along the river where the locals lived...
Inle Lake

Inle Lake

inle Lake

Nam Pan Village, the long neck lady. Each rings represent the age and seniority of the lady..
Inle Lake

We stayed for sunset at Cat Cat Monastery...
Inle Lake

The Ravishing skies during sun set....
Inle Lake

Mamiya C220, 80mm, 55mm
Kodak E100VS

Sunday, November 11, 2012

The journey to Inle Lake

While I was going thru the pictures and selecting the few that i thought i should share here, i was once again stuck in a dilemma..This place is so nice and probably the highlight of the whole trip that i thought, why not, just post in the manner that i shoot there.
Back then, I was putting up a useless fight on restricting myself to waste more films on the lake and now trying my best to disqualify some shots on display..

Giving's Inle Lake...
Myanmar Inle Lake

Myanmar Inle Lake

Myanmar Inle Lake

Greeted by this local fisherman along the way...(and like they always say, you reap what you sow, which in this case, my random shuttering and wasting of films), i reached the last frame...
Myanmar Inle Lake

Most of the people here live by the lake and depended on it for their livelihood
Myanmar Inle Lake

Myanmar Inle Lake

Myanmar Inle Lake

Myanmar Inle Lake

Houses built on the lake
Myanmar Inle Lake

Myanmar Inle Lake

Beautiful resorts built and managed in the most environmental friendly condition...
Myanmar Inle Lake

Reaching mine...
Myanmar Inle Lake

This isnt the end to Inle Lake post.. Vice versa, its just the beginning. I have greater entries on this beautiful place...

Kodak Colorplus, Fuji Pro 160NS
Canon P, CV25mm f4, Canon 50mm f1.4 ltm