Archive | January 25, 2016

Panasonic Lumix FZ1000 — Long-Term Review After Taking 5,500+ Pictures.

by Anura Guruge


Panasonic Lumix FZ1000

My Panasonic Lumix FZ1000.

I got my Panasonic Lumix FZ1000, as a short-term compromise, from ‘buydig.com‘, in a hurry, on September 29, 2016, when I lost 989 images on my brand new Sony a77 Mk II.

Since then I have taken 5,851 usable images with the FZ1000 (and I have probably deleted around 100 images that were not great). So I have taken close to 6,000 pictures with it in 118 days. That comes to 51 pictures a day! That is right, because I try to take at least 15 pictures a day, with the FZ1000 and my Sony RX100 Mk II (but mainly the FZ1000) EVERY DAY for my ‘6 Images a Day‘ project.

It is one heck of a camera. It takes amazing, very detailed, color-accurate pictures, most of the time — without the need for any post-processing. 99.5% of the FZ1000 pictures I have published on this blog, and I think I must have published at least 350, have all been untouched pictures.

The FZ1000 has been a revelation. It is a very capable and powerful camera, the built in 25 mm to 400 mm incredibly handy — especially when travelling. At a list price of $750 it is one heck of a deal. I see lots of new enthusiasts getting low-end Canons and Nikons, with kit lenses, to get into the DSLR world. They would be much better off with the FZ1000.

It is not an APS-C sensor and I know that. But the 1″ is plenty big enough if all you do is take pictures for display on the Web.

So here is my first long-term review of the FZ1000, after taking 5,500+ usable images.

Pros
1. It can and it will take very high quality, high resolution, color-accurate pictures, most of the time, in JPEG mode, without the need for any post-processing.

2. The built-in 25 — 400 mm zoom Leica lens is brilliant; handy and of high optical quality.

3. The automatic modes, ‘P’, ‘Ai’, Scene, work well and you can basically use it as a point-and-shoot.

4. Fair degree of customization options with the Fn buttons.

5. Built-in flash is adequate most of the time (provided you remember to take the lens hood off if the subject is close by).

6. Very high-quality video, in automatic mode, without having to change any settings, just by hitting the red ‘record’ button.

Cons
1. Not having a second control wheel is a real pain. Having to PRESS the control wheel to invoke ‘shift’ so to speak so as to access the 2nd function can get old very quickly. This is my main gripe about this camera. I use it in ‘P’ mode much of the time, BUT I like to adjust exposure control and do ‘P-shift‘ i.e., increase/decrease aperture/speed. I end up invariably turning the wheel when it is in the wrong mode. Yes, I can fix it, but it takes time. It is this that has convinced me that I am going to get an Fuji X-T1 (or a X-T2, if there is one) because in future I am going with dedicated control wheels for ‘everything’!

2. High zoom images, in other than perfect light, can turn out to be ‘waxy’; i.e., looking like a oil painting.

3. Autofocus/zoom motors can sometimes be very noisy, even when idling, to the point of being distracting.

4. ‘Auto White Balance’ (AWB) isn’t great THOUGH custom White Balance, IF you can find some true white to click on, is awesome.

5. Though the Electronic View Finder (EVF) is supposed to show you what the sensor is seeing, and you can even set a Fn button to force the issue, this does not appear to be case most of the time (and the EVF is a tad dark around the edges).

6. The lens extends/retracts, with a mind of its own, when you power on the camera and even when you are reviewing images. That can be annoying and awkward.

But, overall, I would recommend the FZ1000 to any enthusiast who wants a VERY HIGH QUALITY 400 mm power zoom for under $800.


Taken with my Panasonic Lumix FZ1000,
in Philadelphia, on January 2, 2016.

Click to access the full-size, untouched 9MB 5472 x 3648 JPEG.

This is a 1024 x 683 reduced, 402 Kb JPEG. Click image for the FULL SIZE, 5472 x 3648 image, 9 MB.


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by Anura Guruge

Mercury, Venus, Mars, Saturn & Jupiter Over New Hampshire, Wednesday, January 27, 2016.

by Anura Guruge


Click to ENLARGE.

From “Neave Planetarium“.

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A rather rare treat. 5 major planets, in conjunction — in nearly a straight line (clearly illustrating the nearly flat orbital plane, the ‘ecliptic’) — across the morning sky, Mercury, Venus, Saturn, Mars and Jupiter (in that order, left to right, South to Southwest).

Pluto is right below Mercury but not visible to the naked eye. The Moon, fairly full and bright, will be just to the right of Jupiter.

Trees will again be a problem for us in New Hampshire. Mercury could be in the tree line.

The planets are RISING from the South. Mercury, the last to rise, only comes over the horizon (but definitely in the trees) at 5:47 am Eastern. That is why I am suggesting around 6:30 am.

They keep on rising, BUT so does the Sun! Sunrise around 7:15. That will end the show.


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by Anura Guruge

Malaysian Airlines MH370: They Lose Sonar Probe — They Now Have To SEARCH For That!

by Anura Guruge


22.5 Months.

688 Days.

They now manage to LOSE the vital Sonar Probe!

So now the search is on for the missing Probe and cable.

It is like a bad novel.


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Click to access U.K. ‘The Guardian’ original. Google ‘MH370’ for more stories.


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by Anura Guruge

I Get My “Top Contributor” Badge At “Tripadvisor” With My 50th Review.

by Anura Guruge


tripadvisortop111

Click to ENLARGE.


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Click to ENLARGE and read here. My 1st and ONLY ‘1 star’ review — ‘Acadia Sunrise Motel’ in Trenton, Maine.


Kind of amuses me that “tripadvisor” managed to cajole and pander me to write 51 reviews! They have one heck of a system and scheme, mainly relying on ones ego, to write these reviews. It is the ultimate in ‘frequent flyer’ type loyalty programs (as introduced by American Airlines in the 1970s) BUT the catch here is that the ONLY rewards you get is ‘recognition’! They give you nothing back — as far as I know — for writing these reviews. I definitely haven’t go anything other than these virtual badges. But, I will confess, that it can be satisfying to share your opinion.

I only went on ‘tripadvisor’, in September 2013, because I wanted to tell the world about the dreadful experience we had at the ‘Acadia Sunrise Motel‘ in Trenton, Maine — our first visit to Acadia. I was venting and ranting. We were mad. But then ‘tripadvisor’ sucks you in, very cleverly. They ask you about the “Visitor’s Center”, restaurants in Bar Harbor and the next thing you know you have written 3 reviews. And that is how it went.

I am by know means a regular or committed contributor. I haven’t by a long chalk reviewed all the restaurants we have been to since that first review. After a trip I typically feel compelled to review the hotels. Then they get me to comment on local attractions and restaurants. Soon I have all these badges and they keep on cajoling me. Once I passed 40 review I did want to do 50 and get ‘Top Contributor’ status. Not sure what is next. It is a harmless lark.


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by Anura Guruge

Some Ice Fishing On Alton Bay, Lake Winnipesaukee, NH, January 24, 2016 — BUT Laken Is Not All Frozen.

by Anura Guruge


Click to ENLARGE.


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Some ice fishing bob houses and activity on Alton Bay, Lake Winnipesaukee, New Hampshire on Sunday, January 25, 2016. But no vehicles on the ice let alone any planes!

Exactly a week ago this area of the Bay was devoid of any bob houses. Those these have been pushed out just this last week. Nothing compared to this time last year — when we had the runway in place.

Lake Winnipesaukee definitely not frozen totally, i.e., no ice-in as yet. Temperatures over the next 3 days are going to be above freezing during the day. Also supposed to get RAIN on Tuesday. That will definitely hinder any serious icing.

So this could be the 4th year, since they started keeping records some 170 years ago, that Lake Winnipesaukee hasn’t totally frozen over and ALL of these four instances have been as of 2001!


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by Anura Guruge


‘6 images for the day’ — January 25, 2016 + 6 Bonus From New York.

by Anura Guruge


Taken with my Sony RX100 Mk II.
Straight out of the camera.

Refer to this post for image resolution details.
NO post-processing whatsoever.
Straight JPEGs from the camera.

Taken at ‘Halfmoon’, our lake in Alton, NH,
on Sunday, Jan. 24.

Click pictures to ENLARGE.

Attribution WILL be enforced.







See this post for an explanation …

All taken at New York “Ripley’s Believe It Or Not”







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by Anura Guruge

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