nice essay: What camera to choose ?

Solarflare

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For some odd reason, the link talks about "street photography" in the title, but most of the time its about picking any camera for any task, or in fact about picking really anything, be it a tool, game, food, book to read etc:

Eric Kim: What to consider when buying a new camera for street photography: Digital Photography Review



Personally I think I'm sometimes a satisficer and sometimes an maximizer. When a choice really matters to me, I'm an maximizer. Thats why I thought endlessly about a better replacement for my D5100. I got a nudge from reallife and now I have a D600 and I'm happy with it. Its obvious Nikon wont replace that camera too quickly, I have the irrational hope Nikon might actually give us a flipscreen in the next model, and its pretty obvious they will have to upgrade that damn AF to something that offers a bit more coverage. I also think my choice of lenses (28mm f1.8, 50mm f1.8, 70-200mm f4 VR) couldnt have been better for my needs.



P.s.: Oh and my score was 66

So how do you know if you are a satisficer or a maximizer? Well take this survey below. Write a number from 1-7 (completely agree to completely disagree) and add up the numbers. If your score is 40 or lower, you are a satisficer. If your score is 65 or higher, you are a maximizer.

Maximization Scale:
  • Whenever I'm faced with a choice, I try to imagine what all the other possibilities are, even ones that aren't present at the moment.
  • No matter how satisfied I am with my job, it's only right for me to be on the lookout for better opportunities.
  • When I am in the car listening to the radio, I often check other stations to see if something better is playing, even if I am relatively satisfied with what I'm listening to.
  • When I watch TV, I channel surf, often scanning through the available options even while attempting to watch one program.
  • I treat relationships like clothing: I expect to try a lot on before finding the perfect fit.
  • I often find it is difficult to shop for a gift for a friend.
  • Renting videos is really difficult. I'm alway struggling to pick up the best one.
  • When shopping, I have a hard time finding clothing that I really love.
  • I'm a big fan of lists that attempt to rank things (the best movies, the best singers, the best athletes, the best novels etc).
  • I find that writing is very difficult, even if it's just writing a letter to a friend, because it’s so hard to word things just right. I often do several drafts of even simple things.
  • No matter what I do, I have the highest standards for myself.
  • I never settle for second best.
  • I often fantasize about living in ways that are quite different from my actual life.

(From the American Psychological Association)
 
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Derrel

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I stopped by dPreview and read Kim's article, then stopped by his Facebook page devoted to street shooting and sharing of photos. yeah...the maximizers are the people we see on photo forums, agonizing over every single purchase they are someday, hoping to actually make! Worried about whether to get a "new" plastic-mount Canon 50mm 1.8 EF-II, or perhaps whether they ought to scour the corners of the globe to get a "Mark One" metal-mount Canon 50/1.8, so that its crappy iffy fifty optics will be riding on a metal lens mount, and so on...lol...or agonizing over buying a Nikon 35/1.8 DX as opposed to a 35/2 AF-D because, one day, they 'might' upgrade to FX from DX...asking for long lists of pro's and con's over two middling 35mm lenses, etc..

I used to sell cameras and video gear back in my 20's. The number of choices available for people often left the maximizers in a state of near-paralysis. Many of the maximizers were deathly afraid of making a buying mistake, and we used to laugh at them behind their backs. The worst of the maximizers we called "Consumer Reporters"...they were so,so,so obsessed with getting "the best" product in every class, and they would not buy anythiung that Consumer Reports had not given a highly positive rating. Some of them, the most anal-retentive, would actually show up with their copy of Consumer Reports!

I find it funny that the best cameras of that era now sell at Goodwill for around $3, and they are piled into wire baskets near all the chargers and cords. Pentax IQ Zoom series cameras, Olympus zoom series cameras, small Nikons, etc.. The small Olympus 35mm cameras later became some of the longest-running 'modern era' film cameras, and are/were pretty good shooters. $3!!!!
 

The_Traveler

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I'm not a fan of Kim's photography and his thinking is a bit foggy - and that seems to fall out in his writing. Calling someone a maximizer or a satisfier seems to be naming the wrong characteristic that is driving the camera choice.

If someone sees the images as the desirable end, he/she will quickly find the camera combinations that will allow them to do what they want. If actually taking pictures is not as important as the good, secure, satisfied feeling that one gets when he/she has the denoted 'best', then the potential purchaser will dither so as not to make a bad choice.
I have a local acquaintance who sniffed when I moved away from full frame because he says he is wedded to the quality of his FF cameras and wouldn't sacrifice that. Unfortunately he is getting crappy quality because he's not a good photographer - but he owns two expensive bodies and perhaps a dozen high quality lenses.
 

Derrel

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I thought author Kim's camera history was amusing. First camera, EOS Digital Rebel 350. Then Canon 5D. Then Leica M9. Then Leica MP (film). Wow...what a weird progression/selection of cameras. From very cheap, to cheap but new and FF, then to very expensive and very cutting edge Leicas, made with superlative quality in every respect...but ending up with a film camera in the digital era. His followers seem to have a fondness for the Ricoh G-series cameras.

I find it kind of weird that he and his followers seem to, from what I saw on Facebook,like the traditional, 35mm-rangefinder styled cameras that were the street shooter cameras of the old,dead masters. Almost as if they are buying into a type of icon worshiping club. I was very disappointed that his Facebook photos page was almost all shared images, not made by him, but by the multitudes. I wanted to see how Mr. Kim actually shoots, but perusing the gallery brought lots of random peoples' images, one after another, a mish-mash of good, bad, indifferent, and the occasional good street shot.

back to my own experiences as a camera sales guy: with so many choices, I found that people could usually make a choice if shown three "equal" cameras. I used to be a top sales guy at my store (one of 13 outlets in a private chain of camera/video stores and developing labs), and helped many people select and buy cameras of all types. A lot of people without brand loyalty would usually show a DEFINITE, obvious preference for one out of three competing models. I told them brand was meaningless, but that fit and feel were important to their own satisfaction. I sold mostly Canon, Nikon, and Minolta in 35mm SLR; in P&S, Canon and Pentax were leaders. In pocketable,ultra-compact 35mm, Olympus had pretty much everybody beat, but the small Yashica compact 35mm with the "Zeiss T-*" lenses sold a lot for people who trusted the "Zeiss" (Zeiss by Kyocera, cough, cough) brand name. Again, the icon worship and cult symbol thing...
 

amolitor

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Whether you're a maximizer or a satifactorizor or just a masturbator, if you're thinking a lot about what to buy you might like cameras more than you like photographs. Most people on the internet talking about "photography" are actually talking about "cameras" and they find the latter more interesting than the former.

There's nothing wrong with that, but it gets confusing if you're a guy who likes photographs, before you have it sorted out.
 

GaryT

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Whether you're a maximizer or a satifactorizor or just a masturbator, if you're thinking a lot about what to buy you might like cameras more than you like photographs. Most people on the internet talking about "photography" are actually talking about "cameras" and they find the latter more interesting than the former.

There's nothing wrong with that, but it gets confusing if you're a guy who likes photographs, before you have it sorted out.



Give the man an award!! All you have to do is do a camera search on Flickr for a D800 or D3s or whatever and see the raft of terrible pictures! People get far to cought up on 'what am bestist camera' and don't seem to care about 'how do I take better pictures'
 

gsgary

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Whether you're a maximizer or a satifactorizor or just a masturbator, if you're thinking a lot about what to buy you might like cameras more than you like photographs. Most people on the internet talking about "photography" are actually talking about "cameras" and they find the latter more interesting than the former.

There's nothing wrong with that, but it gets confusing if you're a guy who likes photographs, before you have it sorted out.

Masturbating and photography what else could you want apart from my M4's pure photography
 

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