Yes, I’m still playing around with the camera. Between videos and photos, I’ve done about 1,200 captures, probably a few more videos than photos. Yes, I know you, my readers, are tired of hearing about it. By the way, for all you wondering, I bought this camera at Costco. They have a return policy of 90-days from date of purchase (no questions asked). Right now, I’m still leaning toward keeping it, but there are days when I consider returning it. The title says it all.
Anyway, I’ve still not found the optimum settings both for all-around shooting and with consideration to the limited amount of tweaking inherent to shooting JPGs. The problem is that the camera can sometimes thrill me . . .
. . . and sometimes leave me underwhelmed . . .
Those two photos are two weeks apart, the first one shot a few days ago. So, yes, I’m getting better.
This post is a bit lengthy. I won’t post all the photos, but I will have a gallery of them at the end. Same with videos . . . I’ll show a few but link the playlists containing all the videos at the end.
Part of this is to help anyone who might be looking for a camera like the P900 or wondering, like me, if the P900 merits a place in our equipment arsenal.
Let me begin with photos from January 19th. That was a high surf day and I had posted a few videos from that day on my previous P900 update. Here are a few photos from that same day along with a few more videos (the playlist has 12 videos, but the last four are copies of the first four that have been stabilized, meaning, the hand-held shaking has been removed).
Here are the photos (the gallery will have all of them), and one note about them; they have been processed. This was me trying to treat the photos as if they were RAW files instead of JPGs. It gives them a . . . different look. Not awful, but different.
They are not bad, but also not great. It was after I saw these that I began playing with settings. FYI, there are two days of heavy surf — January 25th and 26th — that I will process separately because I also had my Nikon with me and was shooting with both.
It’s easy to get focused on the P900 and forget the capabilities of the D7000 with a nice lens hanging from it. More on that in a few days.
Meanwhile, heavy surf videos from the 19th. Note: there is a weird noise on these videos which I have not identified. It’s not repeated in other videos, but it sounds like air-brakes. Don’t know if it’s the camera or something else I did not notice while I was there . . . perhaps it was me saying “woosh!” aloud and doing so subconsciously.
One thing to be noted: some of these videos were run through the YouTube stabilization feature. While these videos were hand-held and there was a bit of “sway” to them, they were usable as they were. For comparison, the playlist includes videos 1-4 as shot and then stabilized.
At the end of the 19th, we had a pretty good sunset . . . which the P900 still has trouble capturing. I mean, it doesn’t suck and it’s probably pretty good for blogs and Facebook sharing, but these are not what I would call quality photos. Nice, yes, printable, no.
These next ones are me playing around with the camera settings. I suppose these are not bad, but that reddish tinge bothers me.
The next day, the 20th, the surf was still decent, although you would not know it from these photos . . .
Again, these are post-processed. I had set the camera to do as little processing as possible thinking it might give me more control over the final product. I’m not unhappy with these — 300 yards, hand-held — but I don’t have a good video editor that allows fine control of the quality of the picture.
The videos look under-saturated and with low contrast and the fact it was a hazy day did not help matters. My bad on that, not the camera. I’m now leaning toward the camera doing most of the processing, but it’s too late for these videos.
These next videos are from a different vantage point, taken the day after, now 800 yards from the surfers, still hand-held.
These give more of a side view. I start wide and you can see the surfers in the distance in the first video as I zoom in on them.
Earlier that morning, I shot these from the condo we are renting. As a reminder, about three miles away.
. . . and these are a few shots from later that morning when I shot the videos above. Again, about 300 yards away.
The next set of shots and videos are from February 4th. The photos say Feb. 3rd, but that’s an error. I rename the files when I download them, and I made a mistake on the names, something I corrected after I processed these photos.
Notice these photos are a bit better. I let the camera do more of its thing. You already saw the first photo at the top of the post. Here are a couple of photos to show the zoom (again, 300 yards) and zoom is one of the reasons for buying this camera . . . if not the only reason.
The exposure is different between the photos because I’m using Center-Weighted as opposed to Matrix.
Here is an interesting photo . . .
It took me a second look to figure out what was going on with this photo.
Which brings me to another annoying thing with the camera. The electronic viewfinder is pretty small and I don’t see well out of it to figure out exactly what I’m shooting or even knowing if it’s in focus, especially when wearing sunglasses. Looking through the rear screen is better, but makes it more difficult to shoot movies.
Here are a few more from that area . . .
This is approaching the resolution of the D7000 with the 70-200mm lens, although this is still a closer zoom than I can crop a 200mm shot.
What I can’t do with the D7000 — at least not easily — is shoot movies like this one. There are a few more in the playlist.
As I looked in front of me, I happened to notice something out of the corner of my eye . . . about 750 yards away, according to Google Earth.
Those surfers are here . . .
Wait; let me zoom in a bit . . .
. . . and a bit more . . .
This next one is 2400mm equivalent zoom, into the digital portion of the zoom. Remember, about 750 yards away.
Click on them to see how they look twice as large. By the way, I’m not including a SmugMug gallery because these are really not photos you would want to examine at pixel-level magnification.
Here’s the movie of the guy above . . .
Back in front of me (300 yards away) . . .
I think I’m getting better at shooting action and hand-holding.
I would prefer if the camera were better balanced and heavier, especially at full zoom. It’s light enough that it’s easy to have the lens jump all over the place at every little movement or old-man-shake. Also, unlike my long lenses, you can’t really grab the front of the lens because that part moves. Because of it, it’s difficult holding the camera steady at full zoom.
OK, so, I will probably do a few more of these posts, so get mentally ready to either enjoy or ignore them. I hope they are useful for any prospective buyer. If not . . . well, I still have fun writing them. The posts, not the prospective buyers. I can’t write them since I don’t know who they are.
Survey time (multiple answers allowed):
Here are the links to the playlists with all the P900 videos. Remember to watch them at the highest resolution and that you have the choice to watch them at different speeds.
P900 Video Tests (from a previous post)
Heavy Surf Series (from a previous post)
Heavy Surf Series II (from a previous post with a few more videos added)
Surfing II – P900 test videos (most of them less than a minute each)
Here is the gallery of sample photos from this post:
That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.
Note: if you are not reading this blog post at DisperserTracks.com, know that it has been copied without permission, and likely is being used by someone with nefarious intention, like attracting you to a malware-infested website. Could be they also torture small mammals.
Please, if you are considering bestowing me recognition beyond commenting below, refrain from doing so. I will decline blogger-to-blogger awards. I appreciate the intent behind it, but I prefer a comment thanking me for turning you away from a life of crime, religion, or making you a better person in some other way. That would mean something to me.
If you wish to know more, please read below.
Note: to those who may click on “like”, or rate the post; if you do not hear from me, know that I am sincerely appreciative, and I thank you for noticing what I do.
. . . my FP ward . . . chieken shit.
Finally, if you interpret anything on this blog as me asking or wanting pity, encouragement, or advice to better my life, know my subtle mix of irony, sarcasm, and humor is blowing right by you.