GX1/P25mm vs. D800/24-70mm: Guess which prevailed?!

Discussion in 'The Watering Hole' started by 0dBm, Sep 6, 2013.

  1. 0dBm

    0dBm Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 30, 2011
    Western United States
    The baby!
    Huh, you probably quietly uttered.:biggrin:
    No this isn't about which system is better; which combo has better IQ, ergonomics, etc. Which is better to have while on vacation.

    Let me setup the premise.
    San Diego, CA: Labor Day Holiday weekend. Coronado Island. I took my family there to try to get away from the unseasonably sweltering heat clutching much of Southern California. It is my favorite city and I'm going to retire there. Coronado Island is one of my all-time favorite places to relax with a cup of finely-roasted coffee and apple pie.

    I was doing just that; relaxing while awaiting for darkness. I realized that I had not used my smallest :43: camera to capture one of the finest shorelines in the world in terms of utter breathtaking imagery.

    The Oly 12mm and Manfrotto lightweight tripod were already attached so I just setup for a 30-second shutter. After three or four attempts, I just leaned on the rails of the ferry dock to enjoy my Starbucks brew when along comes this young man with his beautiful young bride and absolutely adorable baby.

    He was carrying a LARGE Navy Exchange bag full of boxes: Nikon boxes!:smile:

    Ya gotta love the exuberance of youth, their tenacity to wanna learn, and their available resources to acquire memories. And this lad had them in droves: fresh out of Top Gun; FA18 "driver" on vacation enjoying the left coast before joining the squadron on one of the supercarriers (I discovered this later).

    I watched him closely as he hastily unboxed the big FF Nikon, lens, grip, and flash unit. He ripped open the blister-pack of lithium AAs, loaded them in the grip and attached it to the camera body. It was obvious that he had some perfunctory knowledge of DSLRs as he completed the setup. And he had an excellent combo. Many would be envious.

    I thought he would start firing off shots at his beautiful family, however, he had the same idea as I: the famous shoreline. After about ten or so attempts, flash firing each time, he proudly looked at his work while his bride stood next to him. Neither were pleased with the results judging by the sour look on their faces.

    After fiddling with the camera and flash controls and several more attempts, this strapping young lad had the look of a six year old whom had just fallen off his two-wheeler the umpteenth time after dad took off the training wheels.

    He looked over at me and asked if I had any luck. I showed him my five or six images that I captured. "How did you do that," he asked in a deep, rich Southern accent that reminded me of my right coast roots as I introduced myself to start the conversation. I later discovered that his grandfather was stationed in the same command as my father during the same time in the early 70s; his father was the same age as me (also former military-Navy, me-Air Force), and that this youngster and his dad both attended and graduated from the same high-school system that I did. (What's that hackneyed adage about this being a small world...)

    My SO and daughter joined us at the pier and we made introductions. The wives and daughters immediately entrenched themselves with a healthy conversation about San Diego shopping locations while the lad and I got busy with a detailed discussion about camera settings. My SO looked at us, blurted "this will probably take awhile," as she invited his girls for a late evening snack at the restaurant close-by.

    After I mounted the D800 on my lightweight Manfrotto, I removed the flash unit and setup the big Nikon for a 30 second shutter. Results were the same as those on my GX1. He observed that I was quite at home setting-up the FF Nikon. I told him that I use the D700/85mm for portraits. We talked a bit more about cameras, his Naval aviation career, family and our hometown for hours until my daughter came over and said the baby was ready for "night-night." We exchanged contact info and agreed to get together this Christmas Holiday when he returns to San Diego from his deployment.

    It was a nice evening for all of us. We made new friends. They now have us to call upon when they need help with getting to know the Southern California area, are lonely to be with fellow Virginians, and require the occasional help with photography.

    All is good.
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  2. Bhupinder2002

    Bhupinder2002 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Beautiful story and you have an arrest warrant without bail from FF police :biggrin::biggrin::biggrin: USD200 camera body Vs USD3000 and USD500 25 mm 1.4 vs 24-70 USD1000 one :wink:
  3. agpr

    agpr Mu-43 Regular

    Nov 2, 2010
    Heraklion, Crete
    Thank you for sharing this wonderful story! Obviously you are familiar with the somewhat forgotten and fading art of writing. I would love to see some of your photos of that shore.
  4. RT_Panther

    RT_Panther Mu-43 Legend

    May 4, 2011
    I'm a USAF guy but a most interesting experience for sure! :smile:
  5. Ulfric M Douglas

    Ulfric M Douglas Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 6, 2010
    I guess the moral of the story is don't use flash for a long-exposure dusk beach scene?
    Or ... always have something more interesting for the wives to do.

    Nice story.
    Now the bit where he gives you a tour in his F18 will be a good thread ... lots of pictures please.
    And : show the beach photo. Doh!
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