How many pics are left in your current camera?

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Straight out the camera, no manipulation of any description. Beautiful brass work on a Model T Ford.

My main camera for some years now has been a Fujifilm Finepix S5600. As far as I can tell it hit the market in 2006 to rave reviews. When I bought mine it was already, I think, towards the end of its production run. In fact, it may have already ceased production. I was drawn to it because a friend had the previous model and I was very impressed with the results he was getting.

Anyway, over the years I’ve often been surprised by the quality of pictures this little camera produces. The EVF isn’t the best around, and the rear viewing screen is almost laughable by today’s standards. If you remember the days of film you probably recall that agonising/excited wait to see your results. Using my Finepix is a bit like that. I don’t really know what the pictures will look like until I load them onto my computer.

I was at a Ford Heritage Day hosted by the Vintage and Veteran Club (VVC) in Johannesburg recently. A friend who owns a Model A had called me up saying there may be some cool pictures to be had. So off I trundled with my trusty Finepix in tow.

I always set the film setting to “C” – which stands for “Chrome” and I think is meant to emulate the saturation produced by Fujichrome Velvia. Occasionally I set it to “B”, which is the b+w setting, apparently an emulation of Fuji Neopan.

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“And we’ll have fun, fun, fun ’til her daddy takes the T-bird away.” The Beach Boys. Sometimes the Fuji battles a bit with intense reds, especially in high contrast scenarios. But today we were blessed with an overcast sky that helped to tone things down a bit.

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Below is a comparison shot from a similar angle, using my 20.7 mpx Sony Xperia z3 phone camera, also straight out the camera with no manipulation at all.
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“Any colour you like, as long as it’s black.” Henry Ford You can see a re-worked version of this shot over on my Instagram, or on my Flickr stream.

Of course, how you see these pics will depend a lot on your monitor, and how you’ve set it up. There are so many variables with digital photography and viewing pictures online, that it’s almost impossible to evaluate what a photograph actually looks like. Also, I believe that as soon as a picture is edited, knowing what camera is was taken on becomes almost irrelevant.

The other point is don’t keep salivating for the latest and greatest. There are probably plenty of pics left in your current camera.

©2016. All images copyright Grahame Hall and may not be used without my written permission. Please respect the rights of others.

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2 thoughts on “How many pics are left in your current camera?”

  1. Excellent post, in terms of both the images and the writing.

    I have always admired the colour in your shots and I’m sure the Fuji has had no small part in that. Quite a machine, despite the years.

    It’s probably fair to infer that I was at least one of the people the post was directed at, and won’t dispute that I have been a gear fidget of late.

    Some of this has certainly been unnecessary and other parts were perhaps justified. Rather than clog your blog with a full blow by blow account, I’ll say this:

    Ultimate image quality has not really improved much between my old 12Mp Nikon D90 and the 24Mp Canon EOS 80D. In good light, properly exposed images from the old camera still look great by any measure.

    Where the new cameras help is flexibility. The RAW files are simply more malleable, particularly when it comes to recovering shadow detail. The extra resolution gives you more scope for cropping when you run out of optical zoom. The autofocus is faster (on SLRs anyway) and more accurate which is great for air shows etc.

    Could I have stayed with the old setup? Yes. Should I have? Probably. Will I change again – probably not – for reasons which are worth a blog post of their own.

    Anyway, keep on Finepixtrixing it. The old S5600 continues to do you more than proud.

    1. Thanks for your kind comments, Gavin. The article was not specifically aimed at you, although I had heard from a mutual “acquaintance” you had moved from the Olympus mirrrorless to Canon SLR. I agree with you about flexibility, but, one should ask “just how much ‘flexibility’ do I need?” Incidentally, the S5600 does shoot RAW, so the capability is there if I want it. I think one of the reasons I’m able to produce decent images on my old camera is that I know this camera inside out and back to front – it’s almost an extension of my eye. When one is so familiar with a piece of equipment that one rarely has to stop and think about it, replacing that equipment becomes a harder decision to make. Also, your “ultimate image quality”, as a function of technical specifications, probably has improved, however, “ultimate image quality”, as a function of aesthetics, is not affected by technical specs, no matter how many megapixels one has at one’s disposal (and, no, I’m not pointing fingers! 🙂 )

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