It’s not the smallest or lightest mirrorless camera available, but the S1R makes up for that by being very, very capable indeed. It has the most intuitive menu system of any camera I’ve every used, and the controls are very customisable too (it didn’t take long to set the camera up the way I preferred and start shooting). The EVF is crisp and clear, and 47.3mp raw files are perfect for making big prints from. (And if 47.3mp isn’t enough, there’s the multi-shot High Resolution Mode, capable of producing a 189.2mp image. That would make a very big print.) The only niggle is the AF system which can occasionally struggle in low light, but otherwise I’d be loathe to part with my S1R.
This is my workhorse lens and the one that’s fitted to the S1R the most. It has a decent focal range – from wide-angle to short telephoto – and can also usefully shoot a decent close-up image too (if not quite true 1:1 macro…) It’s also optically stablilised. This isn’t a feature that’s strictly necessary when shooting with the camera mounted on a tripod, but is welcome nevertheless.
Landscape photography and wide-angle lenses are synonymous. Weirdly then, I don’t often ‘see’ extremely wide-angle shots, preferring the (full-frame) range of 35-70mm. That said, this lens is a vital piece of kit. It’s perfect for architecture and for shooting big skies. It’s sharp and yet (relatively!) lightweight too, which is a huge bonus. And the very tactile focus ring clutch mechanism is an incredibly useful feature too.
The answer to the question ‘does a landscape photographer need a telephoto lens?’ is ‘yes, a landscape photographer needs a telephoto lens’. I use my 70-200mm f/4 lens to shoot details within the landscape, particularly those that are physically out of reach. The f/4 version of this lens is smaller and lighter than the f/2.8 model that Panasonic also produce. This saving in weight and bulk leaves more room in my rucksack for an extra sandwich or two.
I still use filters even though it would be possible to shoot without them. Well almost. I prefer to use slot-in filters rather than screw filters directly onto a lens. This requires the use of a filter holder (and a lens adapter ring or two). The Kase K9 is my filter holder of choice thanks to its slimline design and easy-to-use drop-in polariser, which is rotated with a chunky dial on the side of the holder.
Tripods don’t last forever – regular dunking into saltwater does them no good at all. After year of use (and abuse) my Artcise tripod is still in excellent condition. It’s reasonably heavy so therefore nice and stable, and is tall enough so that my camera can be raised to eye level. The levelling base is potentially useful for panoramic stitching, though I find it a bit fiddly to use. Another minor grip is that I occasionally catch my fingers in the leg clips when I’m undoing them. However, that’s happened with other manufacturers’ tripods so perhaps that’s just me. Otherwise it’s a great tripod for the price.
Lightweight tripods aren’t ideal when used with a heavy camera or when it’s windy. My Neewer tripod isn’t one I use every day but it’s great when I need to do a significant hike to a location. It then gets strapped to my camera bag, barely adding to the weight – and of course leaving my hands free, which is useful if any scrambling up and down rocks is required.
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