A New Camera

Beacause of my phone, I'm taking way more pictures than I ever did before and most importantly, way more subjects. For the most part it's way more convenient. The problem is that I simply don't try to capture many of the shots I would have if I had my old DSLR nearby. That is, shots with odd lighting, composition, triggering requirements such as remote shutter release. That means I'm also missing more shots that I used to get. There are some other things and I'm going to try to explore all this and sort out what to do about it.

Good Things About the Phone

I have way more pictures to sort through than ever, of many more subjects that I would have ever considered in the past. I'm certainly not going to give up any of them because I'm going to keep my phone. But I also don't even bother with shots that would have been easy with other cameras. This is a list of all the things I value in it and don't want to give up.

Short Falls of the Phone

Like I said, there are a lot of pictures I don't even try for. Shooting from shade into light. Rapidly moving subjects across complex backgrounds. Darkened subjects. Remotely triggered shots - pictures where I'm a subject, tripod stuff, dark subjects that require a long exposure time.

Shortfalls of my D10 and Old DSLRs

Appart from water resistance, everything my D10 can do is done nearly as well by my phone. The D7 I used to use was marvelous, but it was bulkey and expensive and fragile so I rarely carried it with me. I used it rarely enough that I had to keep the instruction book handy. I destroyed 3 very nice zoom lenses while horseback riding and bicycling in situations where I really would like to have been able to take more pictures.

Next Camera Features

This could end up being more than one camera, but I want to think of it in terms of pictures I would have taken if i had something better than my phone with me.


I purposly didn't want to be influenced by advertising until I decided exactly what I want. I'm easily swayed by available features whether I need them or not and unless I've thought about it carefully, I easily give up things I want especially for price. So, I'm very deliberately not looking at new cameras until I've figured out exactly what I want.


It means giving up the view finder, but the savings in size and weight could be worth it.However, I don't like holding my digital camera out at arms length to look at the screen, the optical viewfinder, makes me squint into a little hole. But the ability to compose the image. but the camera is simpler and lighter. What about at night?


Sony Alpah a6000

I hate to say this but I could be buying a camera from 'rootkit' Sony. Obviously my boycott hasn't caused their business to falter and I can't get people interested in the matter. I'll write more in this in my security pages when I have time. Sony has always produced top quality hardware with good features that made it cost effective, but their distribution of malware with music CDs aligns the with the scummiest of low-lifes. My anger about this wells up just looking up the wikipedia link. One of the things I guess I need to ascertain is whether or not they'll install malware on an SD card, because I'll never connect a Sony camera to one of my computers.

>p>This is what Aaron has. Sports interchangeable lenses, supports the RM-VPR1 remote commander (it's wired and $50). Supports external flash and has a hot shoe. $498. Lots of focus modes and manual focus. Cool thing where it will combine multiple exposures to get something sharper. 24.3MP

Olympus PEN E-PL8

This looks promising at $449. not nearly as many MP as the Sony Alpha 16.1 MP. Has a remote release the RM-UC1 - maybe cable. Interchangeable lenses. External flash. Looks like you can do manual focus. Supports exposure control with a whole bunch of "modes"

Olympus OM-D E-M10 MarkII

16.1MP. electronic viewfinder. same flash, same remote release.$499.body only.

Nikon 1 J5

This looks nice, but i don't see a remote shutter release. $502 but it includes a lense. 23MP. only autofocus (?). supports manual exposure control.

Shopping References

General Photography and Picture Processing

It's pretty obvious that the pictures I'm taking now aren't as satisfying as those I did when I was taking motorcycle vacations. The above discussions on what I want in a new camera certainly look at technical aspects of why my pictures aren't very good. Maybe a bigger part is a lack of enthusiasm that I used to have. I used to feel imersed in the process of taking a picture: the framing, lighting, arpeture, exposure, depth of field, camera shake. I haven't thought in those terms for years and it really detracts from the result. I spend a lot more time now setting things up to put pictures on the Internet.



Web pages with lots of images are really slow to load. Several years ago I started reducing the size of images to 1024xsomething reachable via clicking on a 150xsomethingelse thumbnail. I eliminated pictures from the home page of the site and provided links to pages with pictures like about boating and bicycling, those pages had thumbnails and are pretty fast to load. The thumbnails are clickable links to what I call Internet images that are scaled to 1024xsomething (often 768) that should display well on the typical laptop. Full resolution images are available by sending me email.


In order to be able to find the hi resolution originals, the original file name is contained in the web version of the filename. A t is used to indicate the image was scaled to thumbnail size, an i indicates it was scaled to 1024 by something. Images that have been rotated have an r in them and I've occasionally cropped images, indicated with a c. I don't do anything else with images although there are some I'd probably color balance if I ever put them on the web.


Generally I don't mess with it. If I ever get a camera that puts location information in the metadata, I'll probably blank that out. If anyone can think of a reason to do otherwise, please email me and explain, I'm open to suggestions.

Picture Processing

Generally I sneaker net the picture files to my laptop. I absolutely don't trust the Internet or the various 'cloud' services (and don't like being in a position where I have to trust my phone). Any camera I buy needs to support this.

Once on my laptop the pictures are given an initial sort and potential Internet images are batched up by date they were taken off the camera. Other images have differen fates that are irrelevant here.

Batches are processed using GIMP to scale, rotate, if color balance is necessary, etc... and these are copied into parallel web directories on the laptop (a full duplicate is kept of the web site on my PC).

I manually write the web pages using a standard text editor (gedit most of the time), and upload them to duba.org using filezilla. Yes, I need to rethink this part of the process, but that's a long way off.