Review

Really Nice Images All Films 4.0 Review

RNI 4

Really Nice Images released version 4.0 of their RNI All Films Pack in the beginning of July. I actually wrote a preview of it earlier, and didn’t come around to doing a review until now. In summary, if you liked what you read in my preview article, you can go ahead and prepare to make a purchase. My impressions have not changed much between then and now. In fact this review will have a lot of cut-and-paste content from the preview article in July.

To recap, the RNI 4.0 All Films pack is priced at 122 USD and existing subscribers get an email with a half-price offer to upgrade. (If you didn’t get your upgrade offer, check out this page.) RNI now offers the All Films pack in Pro and Lite versions. The Pro version gets you everything, while the Lite version gives a smaller selection of presets at a much lower price of 59USD. Continue reading

Really Nice Images 4.0 Preview

RNI 4

Really Nice Images has just released version 4.0 of their RNI All Films Pack. It’s priced at 122 USD and existing subscribers get an email with a half-price offer to upgrade! (If you didn’t get your upgrade offer, check out this page.) RNI now offers the All Films pack in Pro and Lite versions. The Pro version gets you everything, while the Lite version gives a smaller selection of presets at a much lower price of 59USD. Continue reading

User Review: Really Nice Images All Films V.3.0

I like film presets and use them frequently. After all, lab technicians spent hundreds of thousands of man hours figuring out how to make an image look good with different film. So it seems a terrible waste to discard all that expertise away with our move to digital cameras. Besides, most of my favourite pictures were shot by photographers using film, so they definitely have a valuable aesthetic to them.

In previous articles, I shared that I used Alien Skin Exposure in my post-processing for tuning colours and aesthetic. However in the past six months I have been using something else – the All Films V.3.0 pack by Really Nice Images. Continue reading

User Review: Custom SLR Glide One Shoulder Strap

It is an oversight of mine that I have not talked about one of my most frequently-used camera gear – my camera shoulder strap. It is really a credit to the Custom SLR Glide One strap system that it is so un-obstructive that I have forgotten that it is there. This is as good a real-world user endorsement as any – it does what it does, gets out of your way so you can do what you do while being barely aware that it is there. A worthy rival to the Black Rapid series of quick-draw shoulder straps. Bravo!

To really describe how the system works, we first have to look at the C-Loop, which forms the main pillar of all of Custom SLR’s products.

Having understood what it is, we can now proceed to take a look at how the Glide One system works. Continue reading

Photo Album 2016 Week 18: Seoul – Metro Hotel Myeong-Dong Lobby

Myeongdong Metro Hotel Lobby (2016)Myeongdong Metro Hotel Lobby
Nikon D610, 29mm, f/8, 1/40, ISO 2500

I last visited Seoul in 2014. I certainly was not expecting a return this year. Nevertheless, here I was. Fortunately, things did not go the way of “more of the same” – a pleasant surprise!

Interesting note – the two hotels we stayed with do not provide any dental accessories to guests. This was surprising considering this is rather common practice among most Asian countries and how well developed the tourism industry ought to be in Korea. In fact other than that lack, every other facility of the hotels we stayed in are modern and comfortable. I suppose this would be a trait or practice unique to the hotels here.

Here we have the lobby of the Metro Hotel Myeong-Dong. While it is no luxury hotel, it is clean, comfortable, affordable, pleasingly-decorated, offers adequate services and provides a really good internet connection to guests. Convenient location within the Myeong-Dong shopping and F&B paradise plus close proximity to a subway makes it a really good deal. The default guest room could be a slight squeeze for two, but nothing that seasoned travellers could not handle. There is always an option for a larger guest room at a higher price though.

More to come on Seoul 2016.

Long-term User Review: Nikon AF-S Nikkor 18-35mm f/3.5 – 4.5G ED

Descending Escalator In X ShapeDescending Escalator In X
D610, 18mm, f/5.6, 1/40, ISO 100

I will start this review with a glimpse of the conclusion: Sometimes, you buy into a particular camera brand for certain advantages that you are looking for that is not available in the ecosystem of other camera brands. The AF-S Nikkor 18-35mm f/3.5 – 4.5G ED (abbreviated 18-35G) is a wonder that deserves this honour in the current Nikon lineup. There is no other camera system that offers a wide-angle zoom lens covering a full-frame sensor area that can fulfill a 3X criteria of being so light-weight, so high-performing, and so affordable. Nikon FX users who are looking for a wide-angle zoom and know that you will be stopping-down most of the time, just get the 18-35G now. Continue reading

Long-term User Review: Nikon AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G

Lighted Path In The DarkLighted path In The Dark
Nikon D610, 50mm, f/4, 1/125, ISO 1800

To repeat myself in all my long-term review articles: This is not a scientific review with detailed graphs, charts, numbers and corner crops. There are already plenty of these on the internet. I believe those kinds of reviews fulfill a necessary function, but we don’t use our equipment in a laboratory. We use lenses to capture all manners of three-dimensional subjects in a multitude of environments at different distances under myriad lighting conditions. Since I always find myself looking for such actual end-user experience impressions, I decided to do one myself. 🙂

I bought the AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G (abbreviated 50G) together with the AF-S Nikkor 28mm f/1.8G ED (reviewed here) at the end of 2013, so I have been using it for more than 2 years prior to this review.
Continue reading

Long-term User Review: AF-S Nikkor 28mm f/1.8G ED

Dongdaemun Design Plaza 8Dongdaemun Design Plaza: The Most Photographed Stairs Outside
D610, 28mm, f/8, 1/100, ISO 100

To state the obvious, a long-term user review is a late one. There are already abundant reviews of this lens with detailed graphs, charts, numbers and test shots. I agree that these testing methods fulfill a necessary and much-appreciated function, but solely relying on them is too-narrow minded. We use lenses to capture all kinds of three-dimensional subjects in a multitude of environments at different distances under myriad lighting conditions. Not just in a laboratory of limited size with mundane lighting. There are also questions about rendering aesthetics, which are characteristics that cannot be scientifically measured. When searching for lens reviews, I always find myself looking for end-user-experience articles to supplement those laboratory results.

Hence I figured I should do one of my own. 🙂 Continue reading

Photo Album 2016 Week 2: From Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport

It was not a leisure trip. Just a business trip with some unfortunate long periods of waiting between transits. Throw in a 3-hour plane delay and I found myself waiting in Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi International Airport for nearly 6 hours. Ouch!

Man Waiting At Airport Viewing LoungeWaiting At The Airport Viewing Gallery
Nikon D610, 28mm, f/8, 1/50, ISO 100

Continue reading