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What's Your Go-To Camera On The Trail?

I'm currently using the Sony A6000, small but packs a powerful punch.  Delicate in damp conditions. Fantastic video and pictures.

Looking at upgrading to the A6500 this season, for 4K video, a bit more rain tolerance, and other features.

REI Member Since 1979 YouTube.com/philreedshikes
32 Replies

Wow, I am late to the party but at least I showed up, right?

I have ditched my dSLR gear for hiking and now shoot exclusively with  my iPhone 11. BUT the native camera app is... "lacking" to be polite.

 

I bought the Camera+2 app for shooting stills ($5, I think) and Filmic Pro for shooting video ($15 - yeah, it's expensive). Both do a fantastic job of breathing new life into the iPhone's camera. My favorite feature of both is (but there are certainly lots) the ability to set and lock the AF and focus points separately.

I bought a smartphone clamp with the GoPro base so that I can use it with my GoPro camera equipment (tripod, etc.) without buying more stuff. I added a lav mic and a $20 video rig for the iPhone as well. 

My entire shooting kit now (rig, phone, external mic, tripod, backpack strap clamp) weighs about half of just my dSLR and the 28 24-7- lens.

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“Between every two pine trees there is a door leading to a new way of life.” (John Muir)

Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.

Great ideas @Dad_Aint_Hip !  You've made me rethink my inadequacy with my Samsung Galaxy.  😁 

Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.
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wow! @Dad_Aint_Hip thanks!  I just learned something!  I had no idea I could get a camera app for my iphone, other than the canned app, huh!  I will look into this!

REI Member Since 1979 YouTube.com/philreedshikes

I just downloaded the Adobe Lightroom cc app for my iPhone it was free and now I can take raw photos, fantastic!!

Now I know what I’m gonna be doing for the Rest of the day, LOL

REI Member Since 1979 YouTube.com/philreedshikes

@Philreedshikes - since you have a YT channel (which I'll go and subscribe to momentarily), have you looked at using Adobe Spark? You can shoot with your phone and use it to create thumbnails. It's only $10 month, BUT it comes with Adobe Cloud storage, which will make sorting and cataloging your images in Lightroom MUCH easier.

I am just building my channel (so still getting a library of videos to upload) but the editing workflow I now use is this:

  1. Capture in either Camera+2 (stills) or Filmic Pro (video)
  2. Edit stills in Lightroom and video in Premiere Rush and save to Adobe Cloud
  3. Create thumbnails for video in Spark
  4. Upload to YT
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“Between every two pine trees there is a door leading to a new way of life.” (John Muir)

Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.

ok, don't bother with the adobe lightroom cc app, it takes RAW photos and has a lot of controls.....BUT.......you have to have a subscription to their cloud at $10/month to get them off the phone.

So now I've bought Procam 7, for a few bucks, and it works fantastic, for my purposes, which was to see what I could get out of my iphone, which is a lot, almost everything but F stop controls.  So I had to get a remote shutter, if I ever want to do timed exposures or time lapse, like I said MANY options.

All that said, the iphone is still number 3, behind the A6500 and gopro 8 black.

REI Member Since 1979 YouTube.com/philreedshikes

Sony A7 mirrorless DSLR. It has a full size light sensor and, with the proper adapters, I can use my old Minolta lenses from my antique X700. Very light, battery life is exceptional, the Sony lenses are awfully expensive, so I only own a couple, but the ability to use old lenses like my Minolta 30 - 70 macro zoom, or my Voigtlander 12mm wide angle has made it cheap to outfit with a wide variety of glass.

I'm also a Sony mirrorless guy (having come over from my years of shooting Minolta). I found Tamron lenses to be a decent compromise between quality and affordablity. Nothing will compare (IMHO) to the Zeiss glass in a Sony lens but, as you pointed out, they're expensive.

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“Between every two pine trees there is a door leading to a new way of life.” (John Muir)

Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.
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I love my sony A6500, but it really goes through batteries.

One thing I really love is using the remote control app on the camera to link to my iphone, when using a tripod.  That way I can  adjust the shot and the settings, even in manual, without bending over the tripod.

REI Member Since 1979 YouTube.com/philreedshikes

Good question, with so many good answers. IMHO the best camera kit is the one you know like the back of your hand and can afford. Don't forget lenses matter also, maybe more. I've been a career photojournalist for over 40 years have to say optics matter. If you're going to spend money on gear, buy quality glass. The old saying, "you get what you pay for" totally applies. My go-to lenses are 16-35mm 2.8, 70-200mm 2.8. They pretty much cover everything.

Ok, the drawbacks are: 

They're heavy.

They're expensive.

They take a lot of space.

But, between the two you have everything covered.  With the 16-35, you can shoot wide scenic landscapes and wonderful foreground/background pix. The 70-200 offers great a focal length for wildlife or portraits.  Both are fast enough at f/2.8 to stop any action. Plus 2.8 gives you great bokeh. Both lenses will give you great photos with prosumer or professional DSLRs.

There are deals and don't forget the refurbished or gently used markets. I typically buy my gear refurbished from the manufacturer. 

Ok so here is the kicker. I shoot 90% of my hiking, camping, canoeing, travel photos with my iPhone. I can shoot pano's, slow motion video, video, timelapse, portraits, and post it or email from the same device. Crazy right? I don't have to carry a bunch of gear with me. That is too much like work. 

 

 

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