Equipment

A current and complete listing of my tools of the trade. [Last updated 15/11/2013]


Cameras

  • Canon EOS 5DmkIII– My current digital workhorse, the handling (both ergonomically and in camera) paired with the excellent skintone rendition was enough to convince me to jump ship from Nikon to Canon.
  • Nikon FM2– One of the best built full mechanical Nikon cameras, and the last. An original all back titanium shutter FM2 where the battery was only needed to power the LED meter, this otherwise mechnical unit was capable of readhing 1/4000 sec.
  • Nikon F2A– A professional level film camera that allowed for interchangeable heads. This unit has the ability to read Ai lens to avoid the need to stop down. Feels like a tank and can probably stop a bullet, or catch it at 1/2000th second.
  • Nikon 35Ti– A compact film camera that I had always lusted over, with features such as the titanium chassis, bright f/2.8 lens, illuminated parallax correcting frame lines, analogue dials to indicate focusing distance, exposure compensation and film count… what more could you want?
  • Mamiya C330F– A professional level film twin lens reflex camera with interchangeable lens. The bellows based focusing system allows for close focusing paired with a parallax compensating viewfinder.
  • Lomo LC-A– 1991 refurbished model with original glass lens.
  • Stealth Holga– Modified by HolgaMods to be completely blacked out, with close focusing lens calibration and aperture modification.
  • Diana F+– Have yet to properly play with this lomo cam (15/11/2013), bought because it was the height of the lomo-craze and I enjoyed the thought of a pinhole camera.
  • Samsung WB2000– A compact camera bought for overseas travel, it takes relatively sharp photos with an impressive (albeit lower resolution) high speed video function up to 1000 fps. A cool aesthetic is the inclusion of analogue dials a la fuel gauges to show you how much battery/ memory is remaining.

Lenses

  • Lensbaby Composer– A spontaneous purchase which I have not regretted, its double glass optics proves to be sharp in the sweetspot, and the effects are unlike any other, however, I have yet to fully embrace this lens because of such. Now I have a Sweet 35 Optic to accompany this, no regrets at all!
  • Nikon Nikkor 135mm f/2.8 AI– A great addition to the kit, a lightweight and inconspicuous telephoto that handles well in low light, has well controlled chroma that is virtually gone by f/4. It’s characteristic is a low contrast, perfect for portraiture lens.
  • Avanar 28mm f/2.8 M42 Mount– Has been used on my Pentax P30 with an M42 adapter, produces sharp images with a unique distortion. Unable to focus to infinity when used on an adapter.
  • Nikon AF Micro Nikkor 60mm f/2.8D– A screwdriver driven lens that retains an aperture ring, this lens is perfectly sharp and produces clear and spectacular macros. With little to no chromatic aberration, the range allows it for a good portrait and FX lens.
  • Helios 44M 58mm f/2– A Zeiss Biotar copy with psychadelic bokeh, mounted with an optically corrected M42 to Nikon adapter.
  • Voigtlander Nokton 58mm f/1.4 SL-II– A great addition to my arsenal. This manual focus lens was a definite buy after a very brief trial due to its unparalleled sharpness and resolution, rendition of bokeh and chroma being well controlled at large apertures. I see it taking the place of the Nikon 85mm f/1.8D for portraiture and even for DSLR film-making.

Speedlights

  • Nikon SB-700 (2)– Two SB-700 flashes that are lightweight and compact upgrades to the SB-600 whilst taking the form and features of the SB-900. The choice of two was to have accurate power matching when it is critically needed.
  • Nikon SB-900– The current flagship Nikon flash, powerful outdoors and more features than you can poke a stick at, the extra power makes it useful inside a softbox without losing too much light.

Bags

  • Lowepro Pro Runner 450 AW– My bag for intensive shoots, it allows me to carry close to all of my equipment, contains a laptop compartment and tripod holder. The harness has proper weight distribution allows me to carry all this comfortably.
  • Lowepro Flipside 400 AW– A cleverly designed backpack that does not require you to remove it from your body to access gear. The front compartment fits accessories and a 32″ 5in1 reflector perfectly, whilst the internal compartment can fit up to 2 camera bodies and an assortment of flashes/ lens.
  • Tenba Messenger Photo/ Laptop Daypack– This is quite a versatile everyday bag, due to its inconspicuous nature, and being able to carry a body and two lenses and a flash in the camera compartment, as well as having a central compartment to store other items like a normal bag, such a a jacket or lunch. The laptop compartment makes it optimal as an overseas travel bag as well.
  • Maratac Satcom– Whilst strictly not a camera bag (primarily designed for military satellite communications), I use it as such with a small housing for my body and 2 lens, it allows me to travel exceptionally lightly.

Accessories

  • Manfrotto 190X PRO B– My trusty tripod, light to carry yet sturdy and doubles as a lightstand when need be.
  • Manfrotto 496 RC2– A simple ballhead with a quick release plate and friction control, no problems thus far.
  • LumOz 250P Lightstands (2)– 2.5m tall 5kg capacity stands that are downright sturdy and of good build, the drawback is that even collapsed they are quite large (85cm). However I do have a carry case for them.
  • Phottix P200 Lightstand– A lightweight 2m lightstand that is almost a replica of the Manfrotto Nanostand, it is sturdy and extremely portable.
  • Phottix Varos Umbrella Holders– Versatile adapters for my lightstands of solid construction.
  • Phottix Duo TTL Cord 1.5m– Allows me to fire up to two flashes from my camera whilst retaining TTL function.
  • Dell Wasabi PZ310– A portable printer that utilizes Zink zero-ink thermal paper, photos are sent via bluetooth or Pictbridge, always a party pleaser.
  • Lee Filters Quick Location Pack– An assortment of colours for gelling purposes when it comes to strobing.
  • Apurture Combo Remote– Allows me to trigger my camera either wirelessly or with the MC-DC2 in the GPS port.
  • Umbrellas– A range from translucent to silver reflective, even a softbox umbrella, here I have opted for the cheaper unbranded eBay options due to their lifespan.
  • 43″ 5in1 Reflector– Infinitely useful and fits in a laptop compartment.
  • Bokeh Masters Kit– An interesting modifier that I plan to use to subtly expand my creative photography.
  • Maha Powerex MH-C9000 Charger– An intelligent charger that keeps all my flash batteries conditioned and in top shape.
  • Phottix Strato II Triggers and Receivers– 4 groups on 4 channels working over 100m. Yes please! Backwards compatible with the first gen Strato receivers and fires off PC sync ports as well. Simplicity and good value at its best.
  • Sekonic L358 Flashmeter– Now this is definitely a handy tool for those who shoot with an unmetered film camera or want to do some strobist, gives accurate readings every time and fires in conjunction with a PC sync to get a flash reading.