Pragmatic 94: Photography

21 June, 2019


If you want to take the best possible picture, far better than a smartphone will ever be able to, where do you begin? John is joined by Clay Daly to walk through the details of modern digital photography, the pitfalls, the misconceptions and the reasons you should consider it if you haven’t.

Transcript available
Welcome to Pragmatic. Pragmatic is a discussion show contemplating the practical application of technology. By exploring the real-world trade-offs, we look at how great ideas are transformed into products and services that can change our lives. Nothing is as simple as it seems. This episode is brought to you by Backblaze, gimmick free, truly unlimited cloud backup for your Mac or PC for just $6 a month. Visit this URL, backblaze or on for more information. This episode is also sponsored by Solver by Aqualia. Solver is an amazing calculation app that works the way your mind does. When you're working out a maths problem on paper, more powerful than a calculator, simpler and quicker than a spreadsheet, Solver can help you solve your maths problems. Visit before June 30th, 2019, and you can grab a copy of Solver 3 for Mac for 33% off. We'll talk more about both of them during the show. Pragmatic is part of the Engineered Network. To support our shows including this one, head over to our Patreon page. And for other great shows, visit today. I'm your host, John Chidjy, and today I'm joined by my good friend, Clay Daly. How you doing, Clay? I'm doing good. Thanks for having me. - Hey, anytime, anytime. I've been wanting to talk about photography for a very long time. I'm not, in fact, I'm pretty convinced that there's absolutely no way we're gonna get through absolutely every aspect of photography in one episode of this show. So let's just have a go at this and see where it takes us. - Sounds great. - So yeah, I've been playing with real photography in quotes, real photography for a little while in the last few years, particularly when I was younger, I had a 35 millimeter compact camera that was really quite terrible, had an infinite zoom lens. And it was just, you know, it was just terrible. Like anyway, but it did the job. It took some photos, I guess. And anyway, I didn't do much more with it until then I got a smartphone and it's like, oh, okay. Had a couple of digital cameras along the way. Actually, I tell a lie, I had a 1.3 megapixel Fuji digital camera there in 1999, I think it was. I don't even remember the model number. But anyway, fast forward until recently, I don't call those real cameras and smartphone cameras got better and better and better. And then finally I invested in a DSLR a couple of years ago. So about two and a half years ago. And I recently upgraded again to a better one, which I'll talk about later. But the point is that I don't really consider that I started to care about photography as in like caring about things like aperture and ISO and shutter speed and all the different effects that you can do in photography until the last two and a half years. So I've been toying with doing an episode of Pragmatic about photography. And when I thought about this, well, to be perfectly honest, you're the person that came to mind in terms of you have been doing photography the majority of your life. So do you just wanna quickly walk through how you got into photography? - Yeah, so photography started for me as a way of, I actually started as painting. You know, painting was really what I was passionate about. Photography was a way of collecting information to come back home to paint. And then one day I realized, why go to the step of doing the painting afterwards? Why not just continue with photography? 'Cause it was so amazing. - Yeah, sure. So when did you start, roughly what age? - When I came to this, So it must have been 97. Yeah, 1997. I was always into, I was always interested at looking at photography. But actually doing it myself was about 97. It was one of these little point and shoot film cameras. Don't even remember. I think it was a Kodak actually. APS. APS. Remember the APS film? Yes, I do. Yes. Yeah. It was one of those Kodak APS films. - 'Cause we both started back in the film era, age, or the tail end of it, I suppose. Yeah, so you go and you buy a roll of 24 or 36, 200 ISO, just Kodak, whatever. Chuck it in the fridge if you live in a hot climate, which we both do. Well, I say hot, it's the middle of the winter for me at the moment, but it's warmer in the summer. But, so your neck of the woods, of course, it's quite warm. So you can put that stuff in the fridge and you don't want to go on off and loading up into a film camera and winding it on and away you go. But being careful not to open that unless you wound the film all the way back first, otherwise that's a complete waste. But yeah, and obviously things have advanced since then. So I guess before we get into too much more though, I guess the ultimate question that I want to answer as a part of this discussion today is, is it worth, like for the listener, Is it worth buying a real, in air quotes, real camera? Or is a basic smartphone camera gonna be enough for you? And that's what I'm trying to explore and all the different aspects and how you make that decision and I guess it's not just that, it's also knowing what you're getting yourself into. Because I'll tell you, with my recent little journey in photography, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. I knew I wanted to get better, take better photos, but nothing had prepared me for just how complicated it can get. So. - Yeah. Well, you had some specific things you wanted to capture and limitations. I mean, you went down the right path, right? There were some limitations that you were trying to overcome and every time you sort of took the next step and I saw that journey happening. And so it's always the question to add to that also, are you, whatever you're doing now, are you reaching your results? Oh, for sure. Absolutely. And the thing that's different these days, and I say these days, the last, I would say 10 to 15 years, I'd say beyond 15 years is probably a bit of a stretch, but definitely the last 10, it has been the case that the vast majority of people in the world, in, well, in most countries around the world you'll have either a smartphone or you will have like a music player of some kind like an iPod or some music player equivalent. So smartphones of any brand and even things that you wouldn't expect have got cameras built into them. - Yeah. - So it's like pretty much every device every mobile device you can think of has got a camera built into it in some fashion. So the debate of being, well, it used to be when we started that if you wanted a camera, you would buy a camera. And now we're in a stage where that's no longer the case. If you want a phone, you're gonna get a camera whether you asked for it or not. So you wanna take a photo, it's gonna be there in your pocket most likely. Yeah, like I said, even iPod touches have got them. So it's like, well, okay. So is that not enough? And for the majority of people, that is probably enough, but there are still compelling reasons to get into, get a real camera. I wanna say a real camera. I gotta stop saying that. It's like a dedicated device whose sole function and primary purpose is photography. Okay, so a few things we wanna take out of scope because otherwise we will be here forever and then some longer probably. So first of all, I'm, and with all respect to yourself, artistic expression is, I think we should take that out of scope. Cause I know that, you know, that's a big part of it for you. For me though, I, my problem with art is that art is subjective and yeah. And I tell you, the more I learned about photography, the more I realized the subtlety and some of the art I'm coming to the point where I'm beginning to appreciate some of the complexities of certain photos. Whereas previously like two or three years ago, before I got into this mess, I would have just looked at the photo and said, - Yep, that's a photo. You know what I mean? It's like the more you learn, the more you learn to appreciate it. So I think that art is also something you have to learn a bit more about before you can truly appreciate it. And that makes it a difficult thing to talk about. So I'd rather take that off the table. Let's just keep this a bit more scientific for this episode anyway. - Yep. - All right, cool. So I also don't wanna get into things like how lenses are put together. I thought about it and I'm like, let's talk about the refractive index of this aspheric. - No, no, no, no, no, no. Let's save that for another day, month, year, whenever. Not now. I also wanna like, I'm not too focused on how cameras are physically built, like necessarily. Like I don't necessarily wanna go down to the layer of exactly what technology is used to build a sensor, build different components and so on and so forth. Sometimes I've done all that stuff on the show before. And I just, I think let's just take that out of the equation 'cause frankly, there's so much to talk about. I got to draw a line somewhere. - Yep, it's a good line. - Okay, cool. Yeah, awesome, thank you. All right, so with all that said, a real, and this is what I thought about, what about history of photography? Well, you know what? If you really wanna go back to the beginning, there's actually a hell of a lot of history before we even get to the digital stage. So what I'd like to talk about is the history of photography, but in a modern sense, that is to say the digital part of photography, and specifically talking about handheld cameras. So, yeah, just from the consumer aspect. So the average person or even a professional or semi-professional photographer, like here's a camera, you pick it up, it's digital, let's go. And I was surprised when I started digging into this, I didn't realize, so it was actually 1957 that a team at NIST, the National Institute of Stance and Technology developed a digital process for imaging. They called it the wire photo drum scanner. And this thing was like a one bit depth. So, you know, it's either-- - Very blocky. - Just a teeny touch, it's either on or it's off. And it was a resolution of 176 by 176 pixels. So not exactly high res, but hey, that was 57, still impressive. It wasn't really until 1969 when CCDs, which are the charge coupled devices, they just used optical stimulated electronics. So like light dependent resistors and photodiodes and, no, photodiodes, sorry. Optical transceivers, blah, blah, blah. The whole idea is that that allowed genuine digital imaging, but they were very, very tiny. It wasn't actually until '73. I think it was Fairchild semiconductor had a 100 by 100 pixel sensor, but that's just the sensor tech. This still hasn't made it into an actual camera yet. So then it was like 1986. So getting closer, and of course it was our good old favorite Kodak. So Kodak were the first that actually released a genuine megapixel color CCD that could be used in a camera. So go Kodak. - Kodak was at the beginning of a lot of a lot of these photography journeys that we have found ourselves upon. And it's unfortunate that they're not here anymore. - Yeah, it's so sad, isn't it? Because yeah, they were such a pioneer and they had such a headstart on so many people that they invented so much really good tech. And yeah, it's such a shame. Because I mean, Kodak could be gone. How long have they been gone now? It's been a while. It's been a while. Yeah. I mean, they're around in name only. And, you know, all these companies are using their name. They're paying the rights to use the name, but it's not Kodak. I mean, Kodak did all the research. I mean, that's phenomenal. Okay. So anyway, it was really the 1990s. So the 1990s is when digital cameras started to become generally available for people to buy. They were still pretty low resolution, any of the ones that were decent, you know, with a realm of like decent money that most people, you know, wouldn't spend. And frankly, even most professionals wouldn't use them because film at that point was still far better. So yeah, offishore, massive, because that was still the technology was still evolving. And I had a look at the first full frame, we'll talk a little bit more about frame sizes and everything like that in a minute. But the first full frame that was designed camera that was designed from scratch to be a fully digital camera was actually a Nikon DSLR, the D1. - Yeah, well, the D1 was still APS-C though, wasn't it? - Uh, no, I don't think so. The D1's the full frame. It was, yeah, APS, oh, but hang on, APS-C is-- - 'Cause I think Canon, I think Canon came with their, I believe Canon was the first with an actual full frame matching 35 millimeter. - Okay, it may have been that the D1 was slightly smaller. It wasn't considered a DX though. - Right. - The D1 is not a DX, they consider it an FX, but it may not have been the full 35 millimeter. - Right. - Yeah, okay, maybe that's where I've misunderstood. - Yeah. - This is the problem is that you'd be surprised tracking down the exact order of who released what and when. - Yeah, trust me, I know. - Yeah, it's terrible, isn't it? So, okay, so between Nikon and for the D1 and Canon, What was the model of the Canon? - I think Canon was the 1DX, I forgot the name. So Nikon had D1, Canon had 1D, I believe. - Yeah, I'm not as much into the, I'm not as much less familiar with the Canon timeline as I am with the Nikons. And that's just 'cause I'm more of a Nikon guy, I suppose. But just a little bit more about the D1 though, just quickly, it only had, I say only, this is 1999, it had 2.74 megapixel sensor. - That was blow your mind. - That was back then. - Yes, it was. - Yeah, we hadn't even crossed 2000 at that point. But the thing is that from that point, it proved and the Canon obviously around the same time was the digital cameras could be as good quality in terms of the photos I produced as some film cameras. And as soon as that sort of switch flipped in people's minds and that's all the time when the internet were starting to gather momentum and sharing of photos is much more straightforward. That it didn't take long. In fact, only four years after that, so about 2003, globally digital cameras started to outsell film cameras. The problem with that statistic though, is that when I say digital cameras, it means anything that had a camera in it. So I think that that's a little bit tenuous. I think that if you were to look at cameras whose sole function was photography, it was probably a few years later before digital started to outsell film equivalents. But it depends on how you want to slice the statistics. But I mean, just real time follow up. So the 1DS was the one that was the first. Yeah. Okay. What year was? What was 2002? 2002. Yeah. That was the first genuine full frame 35 millimeter equivalent. Right? Yeah. Yeah. Yeah, that was. Yeah, exactly. Right. All right. Fair - Fair enough. So the other thing that happened around the 2000s though, was that the CMOS sensors were essentially becoming far more usable to the point at which they allowed you to make, create very cheap cameras and you can embed those in portable devices very cost-effectively. And ultimately they ended up in, like we're just talking about at the beginning of the show, in every smartphone and every portable device you can possibly imagine, 'cause these things were cheap, they were very easy to make, And they're compact, but obviously there's a, you know, there's a trade-off there, but anyhow, but point is that that was when it truly flipped and people said, well, why do I need to buy a separate camera anymore? 'Cause I got this dodgy CMOS camera, it's embedded in my smartphone. Okay, people probably didn't say that because they didn't know it was a CMOS sensor, but you know, it doesn't matter. - Right. - Nevermind. So that was as far as I wanted to go with the history of digital photography, because the fact is that the evolution that we've seen from then until now is staggering. You can get like the D5, the Nikon D5, which is a current top of the line full frame Nikon. And it's got something like a 46 megapixel sensor in it. That's happened in 20 years. So in 20 years, we've gone from 2.7 megapixel to 46 megapixels or something. It's insane. - It is, yeah. - And the low light performance of these sensors these days is incredible to the point at which they outperform film And it's just amazing. So, the other thing that I want to talk about before we sort of go too much further is just a quick sort of touch on what gear we currently have. And my problem with asking you this question, I have seen the photos of your photo cabinet, whatever you call that display case. Yes. And I haven't counted them all, but there's a lot in that cabinet. Very much so. So, maybe what we should say is, because I know you're a film guy and you also have some digital. So, if you would, your current preferred digital and potentially your current preferred film camera. Okay. So, my main body is the Sony original A7. And my camera that is always with me in my bag when I go to work is my Fuji X100S, which is the second generation. And for film, I have a the main camera I used to just pick up and go, which has a 35 millimeter lens on it is the Canon, Canon P. You remember the Canon P rangefinder? Yeah, yeah, Canon P. Nice. Okay, fair enough. One of the other things that I also love about your collection is and you just listed off three just there. So, you got Sony, you got Fuji. I mean, you're not married to a brand is kind of what I'm getting at. Never have been. No. No, and that's got pros and cons, right? And this is the thing that I did not fully appreciate, I'll be honest, when I got involved in more serious photography, because there's a lot of lock-in that happens. So, we'll get to that. So, for me, My first decent real camera was a Nikon D5500. It's considered to be a pretty entry level sort of a camera. I got it, I picked that up a second, it was used, but it had about, I think shutter count was like 17,000 and so on, on it, which is considered to be quite low. The shutter mechanisms on these are 100 to 200,000 for the mechanism. So pretty good really. And I got it it through a rental agreement, it's like a rent to own thing. So after I paid that off, then I owned it. And I used that for a couple of years. And then I felt like I needed better performance in low light and sport, which we'll get to. So I recently upgraded that to a Nikon D500, which is still a DX. But the fact is that the low light performance and that was significantly better. And the speed that the autofocus speed on it is twice as fast, easily, and it doesn't hunt back and forth, it's extremely precise. And the thing that I also love about it is that it's got a massive memory buffer on it and you can literally just go like a machine gun and take 10 frames per second, no problem. And even to an SD card, it does support XD cards as well for high data rates. But the reality is that, yeah, it's a beautiful camera. I've had it for all of about four, well, three weeks, I think, not even, maybe not even that long, two and a half weeks, very, very, very fresh. So obviously I'm still learning all the buttons, but it's a beautiful camera. - And you know, the benefit of you moving from the D5500 to this D500 is that all of the old autofocus lenses are open to you now like, because it has a built-in motor. So you're like set to go. - Yes, it does. I love that you know that. (laughing) Yeah, you're damn right it does. So we're going to talk about some considerations later on. - Yeah. - So, all right. So that's the kit that we use and let's keep on going then. So the whole film transition to digital, I think we sort of just briefly covered that. It just, it came to the point at which, you know, digital was outperforming film. And which point then the question is people ask themselves, why would I want to buy a film camera anymore? That is I don't have to process the film. I can just click a button, put it on my computer and away I go. Or if of course it's in a smartphone. So that's where everyone starts these days is I got a camera in my smartphone. So I take the photo, it's on my phone. I can put it on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, maybe not Twitter. I don't know, it depends on your proclivities, but irrespective, it's really easy to share it, which is great. There's no scanning. There's no intermediate steps. Flip side of digital just quickly though, I didn't have this in the notes, but just the flip side is, unless you print it or pay to have it printed, you don't have a physical copy of it. And negatives for film, for example, if you look at the longevity of negatives for film, if you store them correctly, they will outlast any floppy disk, any... Well, I dated myself there. Yeah, I did an episode of the show back, I think it was episode 12, where we'd looked at solid state drives. And I've also done ones on long-term storage for like optical disks and everything. And I guarantee you that film will still be usable in 30 years and any hard drives or solid state drives you got will not be. - Yeah, sad but true. - Sad but true. So anyhow, they've mined that. So yeah, so tangent there, smartphones. So yeah, smartphones are definitely the most common camera. The next class of camera, I guess you could say is a point and shoot or maybe a compact camera. How would you define them? a point and shoot. So the next step up, bigger sensors and you can throw them in your pocket. It's easy just to have both your smartphone and your point and shoot. So even someone... Well let's say you're a photographer because you've got a point and shoot in your pocket and a smartphone. Exactly. You know even our co-host Vic Hudson, even if he were to just go from having just a smartphone to having also a point and shoot, he would also just get better pictures. I know he doesn't want to hear that, but you know. That's all right. No, but the thing that makes a point and shoot or a compact camera what it is, I guess I was thinking about it. First of all, it's a fully integrated camera. So there's nothing detachable. There's nothing interchangeable for the most part. In terms of resolution, I'd say the sensors maybe somewhere between five and 15 megapixels. It does vary because you can get some with pretty high resolution these days. Yeah, you can. But in any case, some of them will have a very limited optical zoom, but most of them will be, you know, when I was, you can correct me if I'm wrong here and I keep calling it infinite zoom, but that's what I learnt it as being. An infinite zoom simply meaning that everything is always in focus, but you know, as soon as you go any decent distance from the camera, everything's a spec. Yeah. So I would say with point and shoots, you know, you have a class in this era where we are now, there are a class of point and shoots that are better than your old point and shoots. I mean, again, any camera can become a point and shoot if you just set it in P mode, right? It's a point and shoot because you basically pick up, point and shoot. Same thing with most of our smartphones. They're pretty much point and shoots because most people aren't thinking about what they're going to do. picking up an app like VSCO and going in there and doing sort of manual adjustments, right? The camera is giving you an average exposure, you know, what people in Cupertino think is an average exposure or what people in, you know, wherever Google is, think is an app, proper exposure. But you could go from the average point and shoot that we're thinking of to a point and shoot like the X100 that I described, which is a point and shoot in a way, but it has a lot of manual dials on the outside. But if you were to look at it, because it is an integrated system, it is a point and shoot. And the one benefit here is that it has a sensor the size of what your D500 has in it. It also has just a fixed aperture, you know, a wide open aperture, an f2 with a fixed lens of 35mm equivalent, right? That's a fair point. I guess the problem is the lines are blurred a bit. I was trying to sort of define this and there's that many opinions on the internet, who would have thought? But the thing is that it's difficult to nail it down because the lines have become so blurred, particularly in the last five years. Okay, so the next, I think, broad categories that I'd like to sort of call out is the micro four thirds form factor. So I guess from this, it comes a lot from my take on that is there's a couple of things. First of all, the sensor is smaller than a cropped sensor or a DX and Nikon terminology. But the important thing for me is that there's no optical viewfinder. So hence no mirror, no SLR component. It's just essentially, yeah, it's a stripped down DSLR with a much smaller sensor than a DX. Is that reasonable characterization for a Micro Four Thirds? - Yep. - Yep, cool. Next one is mirrorless. And mirrorless, I think is one of the ones that's also blurry because the mirrorless is again, stripped down, you know, DSLR, but it can be a cropped sensor or it could be a full frame, full size sensor. That's something that when I was digging into this, I'm like, I thought all mirrorless is real DXs, but they're not. So how do you do you have a mirror? I think you've got a mirrorless don't you? I got a couple. Yeah, so the Sony Yeah, I have a bunch of them. So the only non mirrorless D actually have two non DS, non mirrorless. I have a Sony, no Nikon D5100. That's not, it's not mirrorless. And then I also have the, before micro four thirds, there was four thirds, I have a four thirds. Oh, wow. Yeah, non, non mirrorless. Wow. All right. Impressive. Okay. So when I was when I was younger, I I'd heard of an SLR, single reflex lens or single lens reflex, I suppose, but I always thought of a single reflex lens, which it would be SRL, but nevermind. And of course, DSLR being a digital single reflex lens or single lens reflex. So, the great thing about an SLR, thing that I love about it, is the mirror inside, the positioning allows a genuine optical representation through the viewfinder that exactly represents what the camera would take as an image when you click the shutter. Flip side of that is, well, the prism and the mirror, it adds bulk. - Yes. - And so that's gonna make it heavier and bigger and just more annoying in that respect. And the thing I was thinking about is, does that actually make the same sense that it used to? 'Cause I was thinking about it. If you were loading, you know, 'cause back in the beginning when film was very expensive and not just expensive, you wanted to make sure when you click that shutter that it was gonna be a good photo. So if you actually were able to see exactly what the film would see through the viewfinder before you click that button, that made sense because you're not going to go and burn like 36 images on this roll, like with rapid fire. You know what I mean? Yeah. But these days, does it still make sense with digital? I don't know. What do you think? You have almost endless images, right? In a way. Yeah, exactly. Yeah. So the one thing, you know, the one thing with the cameras we have now is that you I mean, you could you could sort of go into a true burst mode. And of course, your D 500 actually has a proper burst mode for things like sport. So there's no need for you to worry. And you know, because your camera takes SD and it takes it takes the other format. XD Okay. Yeah. Are you using both by the way, or just one? No, I haven't spent all my money on the camera. I haven't got money for the memory card. Those memory cards are $200 a pop. I know, it's crazy. Oh, it's insane. Yeah, it is. So I guess what I was trying to, I was trying to think through, like, does having an SLR matter as much as it used to when you had film? Because the number of people, like photographers I've spoken to have said, you ditch the SLR, just go with a mirrorless. I think I think the like right now there is a there's a sort of transition happening. That like your the D 500 is actually sort of almost at the bridge of what's happening right now. So if you're used to using a DSLR, I think this is probably sort of towards the end of when DSLRs are going to be chosen as sports cameras. And they actually are still sort of at the tip of being the best sports cameras. But you know, Nikon, Sony, and Canon actually are actually coming out with mirrorless cameras that are sort of matching and trying to exceed like the Sony with the A9. In a way, they've kind of sort of surpassed what you can do. But the problem is, again, the cost. You know, the cost of the camera is not cheap. It's almost like, I think when it came out, it was like $5,000, I believe it was. You could buy a D500 probably for $1,700 or so. Next subtopic is the brands. And the problem is market share for cameras, it's difficult to nail down. And the problem is that there actually are quite a lot of brands. And I just want to just reel off the ones that I can think of. And it's not an exhaustive list, feel free to add to it. But first of all, the biggest ones that I see around, the ones I see around the most often by far are Canon. The next most frequently ones that I've seen around are Nikon. And then after that, it becomes a bit of a wash. I see some Fujifilm, I see Olympus, I see Minolta. I never ever see a Leica, but I know what they are because they're kind of like, apparently they're the gold plated, the best camera in the world ever or something, depending upon who you speak to. But nevermind. And of course you've got Sony in there as well. I do see some Sonys from time to time, and that's one of your favorites. Any other major brands you think just to mention? Those, those are pretty much the majors. At one point, Fuji actually was sort of at the bottom and then they decided to sort of tackle, same thing with Olympus and Panasonic. There was a moment where they sort of hit the bottom. Olympus was always one of these companies in the film days that you thought of. You thought of Canon, Nikon, Manila and Olympus. And then digital comes along and they chose to go to the small sensor, which is the four thirds and micro four thirds. And so I think their issue is that their sensor is really small. It's much smaller than full frame and also much smaller than APS-C, which is what your D500 has. And so Panasonic, which is actually trying to come back again by going full frame. I don't I don't know if you've seen their cameras that are now full frame as well, which is actually interesting for me because full frame cameras are actually getting faster. So what's going to... Because the reason why you went with something like microphotos is that the readout of that sensor was fast, right? You could, I think at some point it was the Olympus had one of these cameras, I forget the name of it, but one of these cameras that had an extremely fast sensor which you could use for sports or use for birds or whatever. Because you know, birds and flight, sports, there are things that are very hard to capture if you don't have a fast enough shutter speed. And so the major brands in a couple of years are probably going to be different. The only companies that I could see right now staying at the top are going to be Canon and Nikon. Canon has a bit of an issue because financially maybe they're not doing too well, but Canon of course makes their own sensors. Sony is probably going to be at the top because right now Sony is probably the company to beat of all of them. The only person who's missing was Panasonic from the list that I think. Yeah, okay. No, that's fair enough. And upon reflection, I actually do have a Panasonic Lumix. Oh, yeah. compact camera, which we got a decade ago, because it was the only one at the time that was shockproof and waterproof. And, you know, we had kids and wanted to take it to the water park and, you know, it was good for that. Till water got into it. So, you know, never mind. Yes. Never mind. Yes. So, I guess the other thing is that I've noticed that there's sort of semi-professional, professional. And then there's kind of like lust worthy, like the Leica and the price differentiator between them. And it's all these camera companies have got different cameras with different trade-offs and they charge different premiums across their range. And I found with Canon and Nikon in particular, they have a very good spread from, I say, affordable, or more affordable, I suppose, all the way through to semi-professional to like top shelf professional, like in Australian dollars, for example, the D5, which is the top of the line Nikon, that's a $10,000 camera in Australian dollars. I think it's about 7,000 US or something like that. It's a full frame, it's a beast, this thing. And it's built like a tank. I actually held one for the hell of it. And I'm like, yeah, no. but I have no use for that. But in any case, this episode is brought to you by Backblaze a cloud backup solution for your Mac or PC. 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So all right, the other thing that's important to understand with the different brands, and I sort of touched on this briefly, is the incompatibilities. So a lot of them, you'll say, well, okay, memory cards. So memory card standards like SD and of course, SDHC, and then of course, the XD card standards, everything's pretty much moved away from compact flash at this point. So that certainly is compatible between them. You know, format the card of course, but the same card will work in all the cameras. But what won't work are the damn lenses. And this is the thing that's really frustrating 'cause if you bought into one ecosystem, you buy a Nikon, you need to use a Nikon lens. And Nikons have had pretty consistent mounts over the last few decades. So the F mount, I think, has been around for quite a while. - Yes. - And yeah, and it means that I can get a camera lens made 20 years ago and it'll fit and work on the camera body I'm using today, which is awesome. Mind you, if I say I really, really want a Canon whatever, or a Minolta whatever, or a Leica, then all of my lenses for my Nikon, none of them will fit. That's really, really annoying. And so you're going to end up changing out both. So I find that to be really frustrating. There are some lens manufacturers though. Sorry. You know what's interesting about going to the mirrorless route? Because before mirrorless, you had to have... The issue was more of an issue when we were in the mirrored era. The mirrorless era coming, we have... So the plane from the mount to the sensor is smaller. So therefore, you could actually put an adapter and it actually puts the back of the lens at the proper distance. So like Sony cameras, you can buy a bunch of adapters and if you're coming from Canon, you can use your Canon lenses. And if you're coming from Nikon, you can use the Nikon lenses because the flange distance is actually shallow enough that adding an adapter allows those lenses to actually be focused to infinity and be usable. So going to mirrorless actually gave you many benefits. And a lot of these companies like Sony, especially Sony, I should say, didn't want to discourage people who were moving from say Canon or Nikon, Nikon over because it's like, well, if you bought thousands of dollars of lenses, are you going to abandon? Probably not. But changing bodies are easy. So if you could reuse your old lenses, you'd gladly say, fine, I was going to change my body anyways. I go from my Canon 1D to the Sony A9 instead since I can use my lens, you know, and they have autofocus lenses as well. They're not as good of course as a native lens, but again, if you spent thousands of dollars on some really awesome lens, you're going to want to, you know, keep it for a little bit. Yeah, that's a really good point. And one of the things that I wanted to touch on is that yes, the lenses are incompatible. yes, you can get adapters. And, but, and this is, I guess for me is the big but, is that the optics will work. However, a lot of the automated functionality, like you might have problems with your metering. You might have problems with your focus, like your auto focus. You might have to manually focus it. The glass will be fine, but some of the other advanced functionality that you would get in with the matching, you know, Canon lens or the Canon body, you may miss out on. And if you've got a $2,000 lens, maybe that's fine. It's not a big deal. 'Cause if let's say it's like a super zoom lens, that's okay. You put up with that. Because generally when you're using those sorts of zoom lenses, you'll set the focus on it and you'll pick your focal point and then you'll sit there. So autofocus is not as big of a deal. - Yeah, well, they have some auto, like Metabones. I don't know if you know the company Metabones. - Heard of them. some Metabones, you know, you can, if you have a mirrorless camera, you can still, and even Sigma actually has an adapter for, I think, Canon to Sony. So you could turn those lenses into autofocus. I will keep the autofocus features. But again, native lenses, of course, going to be better. But you know, like companies like Sony, because they were a sort of, I mean, Sony, Sony came into this world doing a point, doing point and shoots. And then they bought Minolta. And so they wanted to make sure that they were going to do well in this arena. And so they didn't stop people from, you know, it's not like Canon who doesn't give you enough information to be able to say, okay, any of those lenses can work. One of the other things about the different lenses is that there are manufacturers that will build a lens and they'll have the same optics, but they'll have the same lens effectively with two different mounts. So they'll have one with an F mount that works on a Nikon and one for a Canon, for example. And yeah, so for example, I have one lens like that made by Tamron, which is Japanese lens manufacturer. Their particular lens that I've got is a 2470 millimeter F 2.8 constant aperture. And it's a beautiful bit of glass. It is very, very nice. It is heavy as a brick. I'm not kidding. Yeah, anyhow. But the point is that it's a beautiful lens and it works on the Nikon. But the word of caution is, and Sigma is another one that does it. There's probably a few other brands you could probably mention that do, yeah, that will make the same lens but have different adapters for different cameras. Ultimately, the problem with those is that, and this is the same problem with mixing and matching lenses and bodies, is that sometimes there will be auto correction built in to the camera firmware. So on the Nikon, for example, you download a lens file and a lens file and you install a lens file like you're installing firmware and it'll have all the correction factors for that lens. So if you've got a lens that's, you know, is a very wide angle and you're gonna get a lot of, you know, aberration in that lens, then it'll automatically correct for that when you take the photo. So things that would otherwise, you know, because of perspective would have had a curve in them. Like if you're taking a shot of a bunch of bookshelves in a study and ordinarily the native photo would have all of those, the aberration from the wide angle on it, it'll automatically correct for that and the lines will be dead straight in the photo. And that's the sort of thing you also won't get if you put a different lens on a different body, it won't automatically correct that. You can still correct for it, of course, post-production, like, yeah, like what software do you use for that? - Oh, Capture One Pro, you mean for-- - Capture One Pro, sorry, I was, sorry, yeah, that one, yeah. So you can still do it in post-production, but having it all in the same brand means you get all that extra for you. So anyway, just something to be aware of. And it's certainly something that I never fully appreciated until I got buried in it. So I'm like, right, well, that's why I'm still with Nikon 'cause all my gear fits for Nikon and I don't really wanna go through all the hassle of changing, even with the adapters, I'm still not entirely sold, but it may be something I can explore in the future. But for the moment, I'm happy with my most recent purchase, that's fine. - Let me ask you a question. What made you choose Nikon over Canon when you did? Was it something that you used in the past before you came to digital or? - No, it's the silliest answer, but it is the truth. And that is that I went to a website where they were renting a whole bunch of used cameras and it had a rental-owned program. So you could rent it for six months. If you liked it, you could buy it outright for a discounted rate because you'd already paid off some of it in rental. And if you didn't like it, you could return it. And I had a look at their stockpile of stuff and they had hardly any Canon and they had a heck of a lot of Nikons. So I had more options and I picked a D5500 and so I set my course. Because you've got to realize I did do research, but I didn't do as much research 'cause I didn't think I'd have to do quite so much research. And it's only once I got it and I was using it for a few months and I'm like, "Okay, I'd like to get this lens. Oh, that's not compatible. Okay, I'd like to get this one. No, that's not compatible. that body doesn't have a motor in it. I can't mix and match lens brands. I'm like, okay. And what's the low light performance like? And it wasn't until I started pushing up against the limitations of what I got. And that's what I was hoping to help people with this episode is to say, look, here are the considerations. Don't just go and buy a specific brand necessarily. Do your research and figure out what do you really need? 'Cause if I had it over to do again, I probably would have gone for a Canon first simply because they, Canon's having, know what I know now, Canon's have more cameras with lower, better low light performance on balance for the money than Nikon do. Although Nikon do have one of the best low light performance cameras you can buy. There is no doubt about that, but I found that there are more Canons out there and they've got more options. So I wish there was a better reason than I had more choices of Nikons at the time. But that's all that was. That's cool. No, because the thing is that, you know, I started in digital, I started with Sony point and shoots, then I went to Canon DSLRs. And I ended up actually leaving Canon to go to Nikons DSLRs. The Canon's the it's funny, Ergonomics wise, Canon felt better. But picture wise, the Nikon was slightly better. It was odd, right? But again, the answer for people, if you're wanting to get into something is do your research. And once you do get it, just use it and sort of almost abuse it. Bring Bring it to the point where it is actually almost in a way you've broken it. Not broken it physically, but you're not getting the shots that you want to get and then decide to move on from there. - Oh, for sure. - You know exactly what you'll want. - Yeah, and I think the problem with this is that I didn't fully appreciate everything that I would need and some of my needs changed. So we'll get to that in a minute. So just to wrap up on the differences between brands, for example, the other thing that I found as annoying is there's terminology differences between the brands as well. So like Canon, they'll talk about EF-S, EF-M, Nikon, they'll talk about DX. You just, there's no value in different names. Anyway, that doesn't matter. That's just their branding, I suppose. Nevermind. And I think that having played with a Canon, having played with a Nikon, and having briefly played with an Olympus, the differences between the brands, I think it's analogous to shifting between Windows and Mac OS, for example, or vice versa. It's like all of the basic functionality still exists, but the way it's laid out can be completely different and takes a little bit of getting used to. - Yeah, it do. Yep, definitely. - And the problem is, of course, people are gonna have preferences and they're gonna say, "Well, I really like the layout or the configurability or whatever of the Canon." Or, "I prefer just the way in which the Nikons are set up just speaks to me for some reason. For me personally, I've used the Nikon the most. So I got used to the Nikon terminology, but I tell you something I didn't foresee. And this is one of the things that really annoys me to be honest, is that I got a Nikon D5500 and I thought, okay, that's gonna really set me up if I get another Nikon, then at least I'll understand the interface. Yeah, no, 'cause the D500 is a completely different interface to the 5500. It is, it bears very little in common. Yeah. And it's like, okay, so Nikon couldn't even keep their own user interface on their own product lines the same or similar. It was just just... Can I just say something? All the camera companies are like this. It's really annoying, actually. It's frustrating as hell. So in that sense, maybe it doesn't matter if you change brands, because even if you have three cameras from the same manufacturer, they're all going to be different. Exactly. It's just ridiculous. Anyway, all right. So that's another thing to be aware of. Don't think like it's like, you know, yeah, anyway. Just a heads up to listeners, look at this. Now we've talked a little bit about these sensors, but we really need to explore the detail a little bit more about why and what we're talking about, 35 millimeter equivalents and so on. All righty, so again, a Nikon guy, sorry, but, well, sorry, not sorry, but nevermind. In Nikon parlance, the difference between full frame, they call FX and DX, which I call a crop sensor. So first of all, the FX sensor size is 36 millimeters by 24 millimeters. And it's considered to be about the same as a 35 millimeter film. So all of this is the goal is 35 millimeter was, I think it's fair to say the most popular film camera size. - Definitely. - For a variety of reasons, let's not explore why that was the case. But the fact is that the digital revolution, I guess, is all about, well, we used to be happy with 35 millimeter. So let's try and create a digital camera that meets the 35 millimeter size requirements. And so the full frame is approximately that. And of course, Canon have got exactly the same equivalent, but they just don't call it FX. What do Canon call this? Full frame, I've forgotten. - I think they just call it full frame. I'll be honest, I'm not entirely sure, but I do know that Canon will simply refer to their crop sensors as APS-C, which funnily enough is actually not Canon's terminology. APS-C is actually Advanced Photo System Type C, which is actually more of a pseudo industry standard terminology. Whereas Nikon had to be special and call theirs DX. They could have just called it APS-C because we would have known what they meant, but no, That's DX, whatever. Fine, thank you Nikon for that. Yeah, so anyway, the DX is, the way to think about it is think about your FX's height and that's its width. So that's 24 millimeters by 16 and it's the same ratio. So it works out about 1.5X difference. - Well, the funny thing is that Canon actually is slightly smaller. So they're 1.6. - Yeah, that's, oh yeah, that's true. You're right, it is. But irrespective, if you actually look at the definition of APS-C and the size formats, they're both considered to be APS-C, but it's just one slightly smaller than the other one, slightly large, depends on how you think about it, but anyway. - Well, see the things that like all of the APS-Cs manufacturers who are actually done by, I think Kodak made them back in the days and then Sony makes them now. Canon always had their own APS-C. And so they made it from, you know, they made their own sensors and that's why they went with slightly smaller sensor, I think. And then actually Canon actually had another size, APS-H, which I kind of wish was still around. And that's like 20, it's like 29 almost by 19 millimeter. I'd heard about it, but I didn't know the dimensions. Yeah, Leica, the M8, which was the first digital Leica, they had that size sensor. So it's a 1.3 instead of 1.5 crop sensor. Interesting. So here's the thing, think to yourself, well, why? Because like, what's the reason? And I guess the whole idea is that less pixels means you can make it cheaper. But to be perfectly honest, in this day and age, it really doesn't mean that. When I was looking at this originally, I sort of thought to myself, right, why is it a 35mm lens fitted on an FX is 35mm, but on a DX, it's not, it's more like 50 millimeters. And that whole multiplication factor, it didn't make sense to me until I thought about the positioning of the sensor relative to the focal point from the lens onto the sensor. And so the funny thing is that if you keep it the same and you crop it, it's effectively applying a zoom of 1.5X when you compare it to an FX sensor using the same lens. And once I had that epiphany, it made sense, but no one, it's sort of, it's funny because when you read photography science, it's assumed knowledge. It's like, oh yeah, well, with the DX, that 35 mil is gonna be a 50 mil equivalent. I'm like, huh, come again, what? So once, yeah, so that's the weird thing to get your head around. It took me a while to figure out because the positioning of the sensor is the same, so. - Yeah, just imagine you're looking at the lens, it takes a picture and it's at, let's say 35 millimeter, But let's say if that lens was exposed by a smaller sensor, you would crop in that frame itself down by the 1.5 factor. So it's kind of like if you were to zoom in digital, like in post, you crop it out of that big 35 millimeter image, the equivalency would be like having seen it with a 50 millimeter instead. - Yeah, I think the key point though, is that the sensor and the resolution of the sensor, that's the number of pixels across and down and therefore the pixel density of the sensor, as it were, that doesn't change between an FX and a DX. That's the point. Yeah, 'cause I mean, you could take that number of pixels and spread over a larger area and it would cover a 35 millimeter area and it would be a full frame. It's just that you would have destroyed your megapixels on your sensor. - You would have, yes. But the funny thing is that you would have destroyed the megapixel count, but the photo size would be bigger, which means that actually you would have better light gathering capabilities as well. - So, yeah, exactly. And that's when you start to realize that in the end, the whole FXDX thing is really just all about the camera manufacturers trying to reduce costs to provide, you know, like entry-level cameras. And that seems to be one of the main drivers, not the only one, but one of the main drivers behind the whole DX movement, I guess if you want to call it the crop sensor movement. The other thing that I learned is that because of the way that they've chosen to do it, agree or disagree with the whole 1.5X zoom thing between FX and DX, is that DX therefore means that you should be better off if you're trying to do distant photography and particularly things like some sports or potentially if you're trying to take distance shots. But I would preface that with in relatively good light because out of the box, you've got that natural zoom with a DX that you don't have with an FX. And then of course, conversely, FX lenses are perfect for more traditional things like for portrait photography. And yeah, and that look, because they capture more light technically than lower light photography in theory should be better on an FX and a DX. - Yeah, in theory. - In theory, in reality though, the sense is lately, I'm not even sure that's true anymore. So anyway, anything else about FX and DX you wanna add before we move on? - You know, like you said, the advances of DX are phenomenal that, especially if you're going a DSLR route, I probably wouldn't even look at a full frame. I would just look at APS-C, especially if you're like say someone who wants to shoot their kids, because guess what? It's cheaper, it'll get the job done more than adequately. - And just a key point listeners, dear listeners, when Clay says shoot your children, he means cameras. - Yes. - Okay, there you go. But yes, indeed, absolutely right. It sounded funny to me, that's all, yes. Okay, let's talk about some key features for camera cameras, as I say, like real cameras, that's to say, things you don't ordinarily get the ability to play with on a smartphone or even on a compact camera. And I know that that's a bit of a broad brush there, but the truth is that you can get compact cameras where you can tweak some of these things and other ones where you can't. So first of all, I guess the thing that you will want more control over is the automatic in the manual controls. So things like just talking about your priority mode. So you can set like, I wanna have a priority given to my aperture. So my aperture is gonna be set at this level, at this size and everything else automatically adjust around it to get me the best exposure. Maybe you can have an automatic mode for prioritizing your shutter speed and everything else will adjust automatically around that based on what the camera figures out for you. and the ability to go completely manual on absolutely every setting. So if you wanna have manual ISO, manual aperture and manual shutter speed, you can do all of that. So, that's a big reason to have that kind of control. Of course, that kind of control, with great control comes great responsibility. And yes, you can severely screw it up. - Oh yeah. - But then again, that's the whole point is that you can take something that a photo where you have no such controls on a smartphone, it'll just tell you, we believe that this is the best exposure and that's the best color that you should get out of this and you will like it. Or you can actually start playing with these things and realize, well, I can bring this detail out, I can focus more on this subject, I can change the depth of field and I can get this background blur that I can't get any other way because I have all these things I can now configure, I have control of them. But then of course the challenge is learning how to do that. So, but having those features is step one. Without that, you can't do anything. Okay, the next key feature I think of having a more advanced camera, a real camera is your control over burst mode, the speed of your burst modes, for example. I was thinking about this. Yeah, you can get an iPhone and you can take burst mode photos. But it's nothing like the sort of control you can have if you've got a real camera. Right. You can't, you know what I mean? And it's like, that's a big deal. Timed exposure. That's another one. I do think that again, smartphones have gotten better in that respect. But because of the size of their sensor, there's just a limit to how good the time exposure is going to even look. Yep, I agree. So, yeah. Okay. Another thing, when you brought this up before, just to circle back to it, when you're getting a body, that you can get bodies for a camera that will have a motor built into them. And that motor can drive the focusing mechanism. And that's the sort of thing that you, I'm just thinking about, you probably know more about this than I do at this point, because to be honest, you've got the different positioners on there. There's a screw type and then there's Yeah, basically you have some cameras to save money, they took the motors out and so if you bought a lens with the motor in it, it works. If you bought a lens without a motor, like the old lenses, it would have to be used in many focus modes basically. Yeah, exactly. And this is the thing that I didn't understand initially. And when I first bought the camera, the D5500, I learned very quickly it doesn't have a body motor so it can't actually focus older lenses so I had to be very careful to get AFS lenses and and that was fine I didn't make that mistake but I figured that out quickly enough but the problem was that when I went to I sorry the adventure going to something like a d500 which you pointed out before is yes it does have a motor in the body which means I can get a lens that's 20 years old if I want to because the funny thing I also learned is that a lot of people say that the best Nikon glass is 20 to 30 years old. - Yeah, the good stuff, really good stuff. - Yeah, and it's like, if you want to have all of the modern functionality and features, like have all of that auto-focus, fast auto-focus, and the best lenses, having that body with a motor in it will set you up for that future. If you want to invest in those older lenses, then you can do it. And plus, all lenses are generally oddly enough, in many respects, cheaper. you can grab a real bargain. And that's the sort of thing that you should think about. If that's something you wanna get into, it could stunt your ability to do that in the future. So that's something to be aware of as well. Another one, another key feature is image stabilization in the body of the camera versus in the lens of the camera. - Yeah, so Nikon, Canon in the olden days, when the DSLRs, they decided that stabilization in the lens was the way to go. Manolta, Canonica Manolta back when they still had a digital SLR decided to put it in the body. And of course, it was a little bit too late when they did do it, but it was phenomenal because that meant that any lens that you put on your body was stabilized. And especially wide angle lenses, which most of the time, actually I don't think any brand makes a wide angle stabilized lens because wide angle lenses, you really generally don't need to stabilize it because it's not like it's the front element isn't far out that you're introducing a lot of instability to it. But again, like if you're doing low light photography and you want to handhold a wide angle lens, well, if it's in body stabilized, you're good to go. Oh, for sure. So just quickly about how the stabilization work, optical image stabilization that I'm aware of is essentially, it's usually several balanced counterweights that essentially spin around. That's essentially my very bad description of it. How would you describe it? Yeah, that's about it. Yeah. It's sort of countering the movement, trying to get something, trying to get the plane to stay at a certain level. - Mm-hmm. - Right, so countering back and forth. And if you have it inside of the body, it is actually being stabilizing, it's actually stabilizing the sensor itself. - So that's the interesting thing is it's the same kind of idea of why we put a spin when we throw a football, essentially the rotation on, I was gonna say bullets and artillery shells, we're just talking about potentially shooting our children, so nevermind. But you know, you spin it around and by giving it that rotational momentum, it will stabilize the trajectory of what you're shooting. Or in this case, it will reduce the vibration from hand, well, it'll reduce the impact of subtle hand movements for handheld photography. And that can make a big difference when it comes to how many stops you get. And that's something we'll get to as well. Anyway, all right, another feature just to throw in, another key feature of a real, in air quotes, camera. And I almost didn't write this one down, was built-in flash versus without. Because the D5500 has a built-in flash, the D500 doesn't. And it's funny because the D500 is three times the price. Actually, it's three and a half times the price, but it doesn't have a built-in flash. And that's counterintuitive. And the reason, my goodness, I'm going to try and explain, and this makes me a Nikon apologist right now, but, because you can have Nikon apologists and Canon apologists in the same way you can have Apple apologists, I think. But never mind that. The rationale goes like this. Built-in flashes in any kind of SLR, DSLR are rubbish. And if you want a flash, you're going to get a real flash. And of course, an external flash, in Nikon terminology is a speed light, which took me a little while to get my head around why they call it a speed light, but never mind. But the fact is that those speed lights or external flashes can give you far better illumination. It can direct the illumination to bounce it in different directions to the left and the right, up and different angles towards the ceiling. You could put diffuser domes on them if if you want to, to try and spread that light out and reduce, and so you don't have that problem with the whole red eye effect. Even though you can do red eye reduction, it destroys the color of the person's eyes if you use it. So it's kind of like, hmm. - So, okay, the built-in flashes, I think there is a benefit to having a built-in flash for moments when you're in a pinch, right? The closer a flash is to the lens, the worse it is. So if you were to put a speed light on top of your camera, it is moved away. If you were to actually move the speed light away from the camera altogether, you actually can sort of model the light better and give a better contour to a person's face, let's say if you're doing portraits. So it actually could make something sort of pop. The reason why I think a camera would benefit from having a pop-up flash is that, let's say if you were to have a speed light, that pop-up flash in a lot of cameras can actually serve as a commander for that, for the speed light. So you could actually have it be the commander to have your speed light be triggered. And that's why in a way I was actually surprised when the D500 didn't have a pop-up flash because I thought that they would have that ability to have it be so when you have it be a commander, it actually doesn't contribute to most of the flash, it only gives a pop to actually tell the other flash, hey, you need to go off. Now I think some cameras have wireless flash built in. And I believe the D500 probably has that feature. And maybe that's why they didn't put it in. I wish it did. No, it doesn't. I did my research. So you had to buy a commander for it then? Well, hang on, hang on. No, I already had an SB 500 speedlight. Okay. So I didn't need to, if I want to separate the flash from the camera, I've got the cool little foot mount thingy. And I can put off in a corner or attach it to some kind of a light box, which I don't have yet. No, I'm not going to get one probably. I said I should never say never. But anyway, the point is that I need a commander module for it. So unfortunately, no, it doesn't. Okay. And yeah, because the thing is that the D 800, which is essentially kind of what the D 500 body is, right? It's kind of like a D 800. It's you know, rather than the D 5, the D 800 has a built And so like when a D500 came out and it had no built-in flash, it actually kind of surprised me a little bit. Yeah, it's a bit odd. Yeah. But again, a flash is better than... or a flash separated farther from your lens is better. It's always going to be better than flash right above your lens. Yeah, exactly. And I think that the other thing to keep in mind with that is that that's exactly... because the built-in flash can only give you light illumination from that one angle, angle which is directly at the subject and then directly back at the lens again, you lose a lot of that depth and it makes it has a more of a sameness to it and I think that's the thing is that the difference between a like the professional portrait photography is that separation and having those light boxes away gives you that ability like you said at best was it gives you that depth and it helps you to get the subject to pop a bit bit more. Whereas you're kind of stuck with a one kind of look. If you use that built in flash in the same position. And I think the only good good reason for it is in a pinch, if you don't have if you don't have that other flash, and it's also not just having the flash the external flash, it's also having the time to connect it into the boot, turn it on and and set it up. And that takes real time. And if you want to get a camera in a hurry, that's not an option. - Right. - So anyway, mind you, if that was the case, you'd just take it with a compact camera. - Yeah. - And just as a quick explanation too, for those that didn't follow the whole, what Clay was just talking about regarding the whole flash triggering other flashes, is that there's a couple of ways you can trigger them. You can trigger with a genuine wireless remote where it's a radio trigger, and you can also trigger them with a small flash first, very, very dim flash from the built-in. And then that can set up your other flashes in a room as slaves and they will look for that pulse of light and then that will trigger them. But to be honest, you need multiple flashes to do that. And I don't know how many people have that, but in any case, oh my goodness. So are there any other key features that you see apart from what we've just listed, for having a dedicated real camera? It could be any of those. It could be, I just want to point out, I don't want to talk about like DSLR. We've already covered like DSLR, like having the SLR and the mirror versus mirrorless micro four thirds and sensor sizes. So any other features that tweaking that gives you, that a real camera gives you that you can't get out of a smartphone camera, for example? - So the sensors being bigger, you know, you can actually crop in, so you could zoom digitally after, which you could do on your iPhone, but the ability to do it on a DSLR or a mirrorless camera is actually better. So I would say, there have been times where there's a moment that I needed to capture, and some of my cameras are fixed lenses, So I had to crop into a 50mm equivalent instead of my 35mm equivalent. But yeah, I think you named everything else. Alright, cool. Solver is a calculation app by Aqualia for both the Mac and iOS. Now I'm careful to call Solver a calculation app because it's more than a calculator and it's quicker and easier to use than a spreadsheet is. Just start typing away and in real time the answers will show up in the right hand column. Let's say you want to figure out 10% of 200. Just type that exactly and there's your answer. Converting currency, 10 euro plus 10 USD in AUD. Done. Crazy things like you want to know how many minutes you've been alive? Try 42 years, 44 weeks and 1 day as minutes and it turns out I've been alive 22,535,000 minutes. Yay. Getting old. Anyway, it's my go to app when I'm converting between Celsius and Fahrenheit. 120F in C. Done. New in Solver 3 for Mac, only just recently released, there's time and date calculations like 30th August 2017 to today. Then you can specify in weeks, in days, in hours, whatever you like. You can add and subtract hours, days or weeks from a date. It's so easy. 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If you use the URL in the show notes, it helps out the show so please use that URL in the show notes to learn more about this helpful little app. And if you visit that URL before the 30th of June 2019 you will get 33% off. So act now and don't wait. Thank you to Aqualia with their amazing app Solver for once again sponsoring the Engineered Network. Let's keep moving. Okay so common use cases. Yeah. Okay. So there's a lot of different use cases and I'm going to be very, I don't know what's the word, same, well, not same. I've got to apply my own personal perspective on this because this is sort of the way I see it. The fact is there are lots more use cases for photography. You can take photos of anything. I mean, I was thinking about the other day, what's one I missed? Well, you can take photos of bacteria in a microscope, But that's not really what, I'm going to call that not a common use case. So for me, the thing that drove me to wanting a real camera was a very specific use case and it is my children. The fact is my kids play sports and the vast majority of the sports that my kids were playing was essentially were outdoor sports. And so I had massive issues trying to get decent photos of them when they reached a a certain size of field. So, my boys all started playing soccer in other parts of the world. They'll call it football, but they what they mean to say is they mean soccer. Anyway, the point is, see, when I say soccer, you know what I'm talking about, right? You go to the UK and you say soccer, they look at you funny, but never mind. It's fine. You know what I mean? That game, the only truly global sport in the world that is played in practically every country is actually a soccer. It's not cricket, it's not cricket, it's not gridiron, it's not baseball. No, it's not. It's not even ice hockey. It's especially not ice hockey, especially when you're living near the equator. Yes, exactly. But anyway, yeah, anyway, or Florida. Never mind. So, jeez, I'm derailing myself. What I mean is, when they're playing soccer and the kids are little, and I mean, you know, like seven, eight, nine years old, they don't make them run up and down a whole football field. You know, in terms of the size, you know, like 100 yards, they don't do that to the poor kids, because they've only got very little legs, and they're going to get worn out real quick. So, the games don't go for an hour or more, the games only go for a short period of time, but they're on smaller fields. And if they're on a smaller field, it's a lot easier to take photos with them with a smartphone, or even a compact, it's fine. You don't need big zoom, and you can still tell, you know, they're not just some kind of a blurry dot in the distance. However, as they were getting older and as they get older, they can also play other sports like cricket and have massive fields. And where you sit in the grandstands is very far from where they're playing. And if you can get down to the sideline, that helps, but even then you reach a point where the smartphone just doesn't cut it. So, that was what tipped me over. So, I'd been suffering, I guess, coping, managing, whatever you wanna call it, making do, making do is probably the best expression. All of the above with my smartphone camera for the longest time or with a compact camera or what I would have traditionally called a point and shoot. But anyway, the point is that outdoor sports on larger fields, that was what tipped me over. And more recently going to D5500 was the indoor, which we'll talk a little bit about why I had issues and why I upgraded to the D500 because of indoor sports in a little bit. So, beyond those use cases for sports, there's also like portrait photography. And I thought about portrait photography as really two kinds of portraits. You've got individual portraits and then you've got large group portraits. And I think they're two very different problems. Also, I've, so yeah, so I came to learn, right? Landscapes, before I actually cared about, you know, before I had a family and so on, I hardly ever took photos of myself or people. I'd take photos of landscapes, know, like mountains, bridges, buildings, that sort of thing. And then when I got married, my wife said, you're not in any of these photos. I'm like, that's true. Why would I? I think the word I say, actually, at the time, Clay, I actually said to her, why would I ruin the photo by putting my face in it? Yeah. Anyway, she was- Sounds like something I would say. Yeah, but she was appalled at my response. But to me, that was photography at the time. And anyway, so I've since done a bit of a- I've changed my perspective anyway. So, you introduced me to the concept of street photography which I didn't realize but that is a bona fide use case. Just general purpose out and about. You don't know what you're going to take a photo of. Some- could be something, some anywhere in the street. Could be car, streets, anything. I don't know, people, balls. I don't know. Anything. Street photography. There you go. Night photography as in like astrological photography, which I'm just starting to flex my muscles with, and I still suck at, but that's okay. It's a long road. We all suck at it. It's hard. Very hard. It is. And then I thought about macro photography, like super extreme close-ups. Another hard one. I mean, let's just like, that's another hard one too, right? Any others you'd like to add to that list? Oh, underwater photography, which is another hard one. it's, it's, it's loads of fun when you're not when you nail it, but oh gosh, is it hard? Hell yeah. Yeah. So. Alright, so there's underwater any others you can that come to mind? Anything that involves flash is is, you know, common because, you know, you're in indoor, I mean, for sports, indoor sports, I imagine you're not using flash, are you? No, no, no, no. Probably probably would be distracting. Yeah, that I there's there's rules. Okay, there you go. Yeah, no flash photography. They don't say strictly no flash photography, but they say, please refrain from using flash photography. Okay. Yeah. I refrain myself from using a flash. And the other problem is a flash in a huge open arena like a basketball court, you know, it's like- You get lost. It's going to get lost and you're not going to get much out of it unless you've got some kind of like, if you had like 50 all trained together and you're like one massive blast of light, like, oh, was that a lightning strike? No, that's just John taking a photo. Yeah, no, not happening. All right. I think the time has come for us to talk about the photography triangle or the exposure triangle, I think is probably the more preferred name. Yeah. Yeah. Here we go. So, let's talk about the three pieces. And The threesome. I'll start with the one, the threesome. Yes. The three, the first of the three is referred to by some photographers as not one of the three. Is that so? Well, this is the thing that I've been reading about. And I've spoken to different people about that are into photography, about ISO. And does ISO actually count? Because, you know, it's like ISO back in the days of film, you'd buy film that was a certain ISO. Yeah, it's not like you could just adjust it. You didn't say like, well, you could change my film. Sorry, you could adjust it. It's just that you would have to wait 24 to 36 exposures. Yeah, that's right. Okay, so here's the thing, man. I it's like, hang on a second, hold that pose. I'm just going to swap out my film for some 400. Said no photographer ever. Right, exactly. I'm just saying. So the whole ability to tweak ISO is something that has only really been possible or feasible in the digital transition. So you know what they used to call it before was a sort of a seesaw. So the ISO was the fulcrum, right? And your shutter speed and aperture were at either ends and that's what you adjusted. So ISO, in a way, I still treat ISO like I shoot film in a way. I don't do auto ISO. I sort of leave it at 100 when I'm outside, bring it to like 400 or 800 when I'm inside. So I kind of treat the same way. And in a way, it's not really a triangle, it's a triangle, but it's kind of like a triangle that has a fixed fulcrum. I kind of like that better. Actually, I like that take on it rather than the ones that you'll find in popular literature on photography that lately, it's a genuine bonafide triangle. And ISO is one of the sides. And I look at it and I'm like, it doesn't quite feel right to me and I like that fulcrum idea better. So, we've said ISO a hundred times now probably, but we haven't even explained what it is. So, ISO actually, oddly, is the name of an organization because, well, totally, right? I mean, why wouldn't you? I don't know why they call it. So, the International Organization for Standardization, which of course is iOS. Sounds familiar? Sounds familiar? Yeah, but no, it's not that iOS. It's actually, yeah, and because of course, if I remember correctly, that's actually the English translation. I think it's originally is French or Italian or something. The point is that, yeah, the point is actually it's written the other way around international standardization for organization. So that's ISO. Anyway, whatever. The point is, ISO is the name of the standards organization. So not immediately helpful. It was originally an iOS standardization. It was originally an amalgamation of two standards for film exposure, which was ASA and DIN. And it was around 1974, and it's sort of been progressively revised in the years since then. And all it's trying to do is calibrate the levels of the digital sensors as our digital technology has sort of progressed. And there's this concept of base ISO for a digital camera, being the sensitivity at which there is the least amount of noise and therefore you will get the highest quality. But the funny thing about base ISO, try and get a manufacturer to tell you what the base ISO is. Like they don't tell you, do they? - Yeah. - I mean. - I mean, the way you know what their base ISO is, is that what is the lowest one? 'Cause remember, you can actually go to 50 or 25 on some of them, right? - Oh, sure. - Oh yeah, yeah. - But there's like, so my Sony, it has, it has, it goes to 100. And then after that, it goes a few below 100 and those have an underline. So that's basically beyond its nature, native state. And then of course, then it goes the opposite direction. And that's again, anything, anything away from that 100 or I think Nikon is 200, anything away from that number is not baseline. So baseline is basically whatever that number is that it tells you that it doesn't have any asterisks or anything like that. Anything away from that is a deviation of baseline. - Okay, so on the Nikons, they don't publicize that. They don't indicate that, they don't mark that as far as I can tell. - I think Nikon is 200, if I remember correctly. Even though I know Nikon uses Sony sensors, but they, you know, Nikon does things with Sony sensors Nikon does things with Sony sensors that Sony doesn't seem to do. And Nikon is almost like magicians with their sensors. And of course, they don't make it themselves. So, but yeah, I believe Nikon is 200. Yeah, so the research that I've done is it depends on the model and obviously the sensor, but I've seen 100, I've seen 200. But I did some digging specifically on my model and there's a whole bunch of people that have much more camera nutcases than I hope I'm ever going to become. Anyway, we'll see. I don't think so, but we'll see. I shouldn't predict my own future there because I tend to overthink things, but never mind. They've plotted the dynamic range and other performance measurements of their sensors on all the different models of cameras, and there seemed to be an agreement that for the D500, it's about an ISO of 160 based on that. - Okay. - So slightly less than 200, but irrespective, I don't think that you could probably tell the difference with the naked eye, you'd have to, you know, anyway. - Yeah, if you go from 100 to 200, you're not gonna notice a difference. - No, you're not, exactly. And it's the thing though about ISO that I found difficult to grasp initially, is that it's not really sensitivity exactly. the sensitivity of the sensor technically isn't adjustable. It's baked into the sensor when you actually make the sensor itself. The sensor elements, like you can't adjust it. It's based on the technology that you use when you manufacture it. So the sensitivity of the base ISO, the sensitivity of the sensitivity. But ISO is more about a map. It's like mapping how bright the photo should look based on the exposure that was applied to the sensor when you took that photo. That's my best way of explaining it as I understand it anyhow. Yeah. Yeah, you can tell the sensor to interpret or map that as though it was a brighter eyes, as it was a more sensitive ISO, but the fact is it's technically not sensitivity. And that's the thing that's hard to get your head around. Well, I'm sorry, it's hard for me to get my head around anyway. I think it's hard for all of us. Yeah, it's kind of a bit strange because it's an approximation of the different film, the film ISOs, which was far more of a direct correlation to how sensitive it was and hence people think of it that way. But in the digital sense, there is no direct equivalent. So, in any case, doubling it and halving it is seems to be the way that, you know, people like to think about it. Although, if you were to spin the dial on my D500 or the D5500, you'll have multiple stops in between. but generally speaking, ISOs tend to go in doubles roughly. So ISO 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, some of them will have gaps in between, like I've got a 500 and a 640, but generally speaking, the doubling and halving is increasing or decreasing it by one stop. Yeah, and it's like, I'm not gonna explain stops for the minute and I wanna hold on stops, just we'll put a stop on stops just for the minute, just for the minute, because it's a fascinating idea that took me a long time to get my head around. So what the heck are they talking about? I really need one more stop. I'm like, yeah, so do I, I'm like bus route. What are you talking about? Anyway, so it took me a while to get my head around that photography term. So we'll talk about that in a minute. The thing that's bizarre with ISO is it gets to the point of insanity. Some cameras go above 100,000 ISO. Like if you look at my D500, supposedly goes up into the millions. I'm like, seriously, come on. And it also goes below 100. And they start putting an L in front of it. So you got L 0.3, L 0.7, L 1.0. And it's like, okay. So in all seriousness, I don't wanna spend too much time trying to cover the fringes of the ISO range, because the reality is the higher you push your ISO, the more noise you're gonna get, the less the quality of the image. That's all there is to it. And the way I've learnt regarding photography is, you wanna brighten the photo, capture more light through any other means necessary before you resort to ISO, because all you're gonna do is destroy the quality of your image by cranking the ISO. Enough said on ISO, you reckon? - Yep. - Awesome. So let's move on to one that there's a lot easier to understand, which is shutter speed. That's like totally easy to understand. shutter opens, lets the light in, closes. That's the end of it. It's like, oh, image too dark, let in more light. That's it. It's pretty simple. And in photography, it's expressed in fractions of a second. Well, unless it's a timed exposure, Then we're talking about seconds. So yeah. Or longer. Then you're talking in seconds. Yeah. But all longer, you know, hopefully, yeah, minutes and get some star trails going. Hmm. Now you're talking. Although I haven't tried that yet, actually. - I don't have anywhere dark enough to try it, but I want to so badly. - Yeah, it's funny 'cause that photo that I sent you the other, like just last night, I took that in my front driveway of the, oh, I should probably put it in the show notes for people that are interested, but, or I should put up on my Pixel Fed instance and I'll put a link in the show notes. But the thing is that it's, I think that's pretty decent considering that was like, I think it was like a 13 or 10 or 13 second exposure. And considering where I live, there was a reasonable definition of those stars. So, I think I'm lucky where I live, because I do live, the centre of Brisbane is 58 kilometres from me by road. It's probably only about 50 k's. The amount of light pollution in the area is still pretty bad. Like I can, if on a clear night, you can just make out the Milky Way. Wow. Which is nice. But, you know, the thing that stunned me was how much more the camera could draw out than the naked eye could draw out with a timed exposure, with a long exposure. Yeah. But I guess where you are, there's just way too much light pollution. There is. Yeah. I mean, my house itself is located in an area that is pretty dark, but it's still, it's not good enough. It's not like I'm going, you know, not like I could go to the Everglades and actually have a better chance, which I probably should do, but mosquitoes, you know. - (laughs) Mozzie's suck. Yes, I hate them. Yes, we hates them. All right, fair enough. Okay, so fractions of a second, okay. So again, if the whole idea of halves kind of, you know, is relates to stop. So if you go half of your previous shutter speed, then that's one stop, you know, again, we'll sort of talk about the why's later, but it generally progresses in halves. Maybe you can help me explain something here because it's something that's really irritated me. If it was halves, it would work in halves, oddly. So let's go with one second, half a second, a quarter of a second, an eighth. So for then for some reason, we don't go to 1/16, we go to 1/15. Okay, don't understand that, but let's just assume 1/15 and I'm thinking it's got something to do with the whole 60 seconds in a minute rubbish, which is not decimal time and let's not go there either. But okay, after the 1/15, you go 1/30, 1/60, and then of course, you don't go to 1/20, 1/120. No, you go to- - 1/25 probably is off. - Well, of course, and why? We don't know. Nevermind. And then after that, it's 1/250, and then 1/500, and then 1/1000. - I think they do it, transition it to make those next numbers easier to get to. Like, so you go from the 150th to 130th to 160th, then transition, 125th, 250th, 500th, 1000th. Please, I was really hoping that you could give me a better answer than that. Like, the guy that knows more about photography than most people I've met and I'm like, if that's the explanation, that's really why I am so disappointed. That's such an anti-climax. making the next number easier? That's how I - I've never actually looked into it but when I first got into digital photography, that's when I explored more of these things and I was like, "Huh". I looked at it, I mapped it, sometimes I write things out and I think I wrote that out. I was like, "Okay, I think that's why" and then I took that and ran with it. Well, you know what? You're probably right but any listeners that know the real reason why I could not find out why, I couldn't figure out why and I just put that into the "I can't explain it basket in my notes. For those that actually are on Patreon and get a copy of the notes. Yeah, because there's the some patrons, they get the raw show notes, you'll see in questions in brackets, why? Question mark, question mark, question mark, I don't get it. Please enlighten us. In any case, that's the thing about shutter speed is more light is good. So long as things aren't moving, because if things are moving. Well, that's not good. So, movement is the enemy of shutter speed. And ultimately, moving and we think about it, well, maybe the subject that I'm trying to take a photo of is moving. Well, it's not just that, maybe you're moving. Because, yeah, because you're holding if you're holding it by hand, then you could be shaking it and you don't even realize it. Your hand is moving because we as human beings, we're constantly moving. It's like even when you're standing still, you're rocking back and forth, left and right. And you don't even realize you're doing it. Yeah, unless you're in the fetal position and you're rocking in the corner of a room, that's a different problem. - Well, we're like that stabilization in the lens in the bodies, right? We're trying to stabilize this. Although earth is moving, so you're forever countering whatever movements are happening. - Oh yeah, exactly. And the funny thing is people don't stop and realize, but two people, sorry, two feet and you're standing upright. There's actually nothing that you can actually stand on two points that will be inherently stable. You need a minimum of three contact points, but we don't have three legs. Yeah, we're not kangaroos. Now, does a tail count as a leg? I don't know. I guess it sort of does if it's sitting down. Hmm. I mean, that kick is so powerful. And how does it deliver the kick? It gets on that tail. - Well, I mean, I will admit that kangaroos are very cool. And yeah, they're awesome. And yeah, they're Australian, yo. Anyway, nevermind. But nevermind that. It's quite possibly the coolest thing about Australia. When you consider that we have nine out of the 10 of the most poisonous snakes in the world, that's a bit of a downer. So kangaroo, thumbs up, poisonous snakes, thumbs down. - Two thumbs down. - Two thumbs down, yeah, definitely. I'm nine. Oh man, I'm mangling analogies and mixing metaphors badly. So, okay, moving the camera. So you are gonna shake it by holding it in your hands. Even if you think you are the most steady-handed micro laser surgeon in the world, you are still gonna cause camera shake. So if you have a long exposure because you've got a slow shutter speed, so you open the shutter, it's open for a long period of time, you are going to get motion blur caused by that camera shake. And it may only be subtle, but if you're trying to take a sharp photo, it's gonna kill you. So that's not a good thing. And the other thing that people don't think about as well is that the actual shutter mechanism itself creates shake and vibration. So that act of opening the shutter and closing it can be enough, especially if you're trying to take something that is a very long exposure. There are certain cameras that, like my D500 has got a mode where it essentially, you know, it's mirror up. So you don't actually have that. The exposure is purely controlled. The shutter is controlled, well, I suppose effectively digitally, isn't it? - Yeah. - So. - The shutter is basically a global shutter on the sensor probably. - So it's fascinating. So anyway, so that's the first thing is a movement. And of course the other obvious thing of movement is that it's not you moving the camera or the world moving or whatever else, or that there's an earthquake going on. In which case, if there's an earthquake going on, it's probably a bad time to take a photo. Just thinking about it. - Unless you're a journalist. - Well, I guess, but okay. You're standing in the middle of an earthquake going on around you. The first thing you think is, hmm, should I get my tripod or should I shoot handheld? Hmm, buildings. - Turn the IS on, there you go. - Yes, I'm just, the building's falling down around you and you're thinking, I better grab that tripod. Anyway, okay, nevermind. In all seriousness, the most likely cause of movement isn't you or the camera, usually it's going to be the subject that you're trying to take a photo of. So if they're moving quickly, clearly you're gonna get some motion blur if you've got a very long exposure. So yeah, movement is the enemy of shutter speed and that's the thing. So the thing that I took a while to get my head around was the good thing about indoor portraits is you can make them so light and bright because people aren't moving. So even if you're indoors and you've got poor lighting, that's not so bad because you can have a longer exposure with a longer shutter speed. And it's that's easy to get more light, you know, but indoor sports. Oh, man, that's hard. - It's not an animal. - And it is so hard. So, because you need more light. So you need to have, you know, the shutter needs to be open for longer. But then if you do that, and you got people running around a lot in your sports, then you're going to get motion blur, you're going to get blurry photos, they're not going to be sharp, they're it can be terrible. It's, it's, it starts to, you start to fight with it. And that's when you start to learn, oh dear, this is where it, this is where photography gets hard. So anyway. - By the way, when you're doing indoor stuff, do you do a lot of panning with the players? Like your sons? - I can do. I can, it depends on where they are. So if I'm on the sideline and I'm in the middle, I try to position myself as close as I can to the middle, but not too far down the other end, because then you're mixing with the opposition team's family and some of them get really rowdy and you're like, I'm encroaching upon enemy territory. I don't wanna go too close. So, yeah, you know, and if they're in basketball, which is the predominantly the indoor sports, sometimes indoor netball, sometimes it's like indoor, like futsal, indoor soccer, but the vast majority of the time, it's basketball for me at the moment with my oldest son. And when they're taking a shot like a free throw or something like that, or they're going in for a layup, then typically the last few moments, I'm not panning a lot. But sometimes I'll try and get shots of them as they're dribbling from one end to the other. And there's a lot of panning. - Does it work when you're doing the panning? Like, are you happy with the results? - Not so well. - No, okay. - Not so well, no. Not so well, no. And that's, I think I've only used the D500 twice in that setting. I'll have another chance tomorrow night. And yeah, we can talk a little bit more about this in a minute, but in any case. So anything more you wanna add about shutter speed? - So when you're looking at a shutter speed and you have a lens, usually, let's say if it's a 50 millimeter lens, equivalent on your body of like 75 millimeter or so. Usually you want the shutter speed, if you, unless you're really good at holding your camera steady, usually you want that shutter speed to be something closer to like 1/100, 1/125. So that, like let's say if it's 50 millimeter equivalent, usually you want it to have it slightly faster than the length of equivalency wise. So, you know, with my X100, it is a 35 millimeter equivalent. Very much, I'm actually using it at 1/130th or faster, and I just move everything else around it to give a proper exposure, right? And so, you know, if you're gonna be shooting 100mm lens, shooting it at 1/15th of a second is going to give you probably very blurry images. 1/30th is still going to do the same. 1/60th, you'd have to be like a tripod. be closer to 1/125th to get the proper sort of freezing of your lens, you know, not the motion itself, but your lens, stabilizing your lens. Cool. All right. Let's talk about aperture. And I don't mean the software that Apple's Yeah, still, you know, just quickly about anger. Aperture, I almost went the route of Aperture. Almost. And I decided, well, you know, I think I might, might discontinue it. And I'm so angry that I was right. But yes, let's, let's go on to Aperture. Yeah, but so many people, they're still so angry about that. Hey, they because Aperture was such a good bit of software. It was amazing. Alas, maybe they'll bring it back someday, who can say? With the new Mac Pro, you never know. Maybe that's a secret reveal in October or something. Okay, so aperture on an actual camera is what I'm talking about. So real simple, it's the size of the hole between the lens opening and the sensor. - Yep. - There you go, that's it. - That's it. - Okay, a bit more. So the smaller the hole, and this is the bit that took me a little while to get my head around, the smaller the hole, then the deeper the depth of field that you can focus on. And thinking about the physics behind why that is the way it is, it's sort of very difficult to describe with words. So I think at this point I'll pass on trying to explain that, but it's just essentially the distance that the light travels from the extremity of the lens, that is to say the outside of the lens, the circumference of the lens, the outer circumference of the lens, let's say, the distance it travels then through that hole to the back of the sensor. Let me give an explanation. Let's see. The listeners shall tell you. Okay. So, imagine going surfing, right? And the waves are creating a pipe. Is that what they call it when it goes over? - Yeah. - Right. So imagine F22 is a pipe that is really long. And when you're looking at the end of that pipe, at the end, it's narrow because it's so far away from you. So everything from the beginning of that pipe to the back of that pipe is sort of like just looking through a barrel, basically. the longer that barrel is, the narrower that opening is from your point of view, the more things are in focus from the point of view to where you are to the end of that barrel. Is that a good explanation? - Okay, I hadn't heard that one before. Yeah, that's an interesting way of looking at it. I'm gonna run with that. And anyone that wants to have a debate, feel free to hit up Clay on Twitter, that's all good. - That's a fair explanation. I guess my problem is that the physics of it is a little bit harder to get your head around. But there's plenty of analogies as the toothpaste analogy as well, which I found to be quite odd. But, you know, irrespective. - Toothpaste? - It's like squishing the toothpaste. And the idea is that the smaller the hole, the more you squish and flatten the toothpaste. And therefore you will get that, the toothpaste is supposed to represent the depth of field. Whereas if you open the aperture and make it wider, then toothpaste squishes up into a much smaller area and hence you can only focus on that smaller area in the center. - Ah, I've heard of it. - Yeah, well, there you go. So, but I still find that confusing, irrespective the physics of it is simply the distance that the light travels allows you to focus on that area. So as you open up the aperture, then all of that light will come directly in as opposed to being much tighter and therefore you can only focus on the area in the middle. based on the distance the light travels and the angles that it takes to get through the lenses or the stack of lenses, stack of bits of glass inside the lens. Anyway, irrespective, the bigger the hole, the shallower the depth of field you can focus on, which is great if you're trying to focus on a subject in the center and create a nice background blur around that subject. And that is of course what all of the cool kids call bokeh. Funny thing is you speak to, photographers have been around for a while, prior to about 20 years ago, I am reliably told because I was not a photographer back then, and I'm barely a photographer now. No one said Bokeh back then. Can you attest to if that's true or false? I'm not sure. I'm not sure. I know, I know Bokeh or Bokeh, however they say it, it came from the Japanese, right? Yes. So I'm not sure, actually. So in any case, whatever you want to call it, that's what That's what that background blurring effect is. And it looks amazing because what it does is it allows you to, and that's one thing I didn't want to talk about was the artistic side of it. But artistically speaking, you're trying to draw the viewer into a specific part of that photo. And if it's a portrait, that's perfect because you're trying to get that one person's face front and center, sharp as a tack and everything else around it is a distraction. So you blur it and magically there it is. That's all you see is the person. And that background fades away and that's the whole point of it. So in any case, controlling your aperture though, more simplistically beyond focus is simply letting more or less light in through to the sensor. So therefore, the smaller that pipe is that you were describing, the smaller that hole is, the less light you have to work with. So yes, you're gonna get better focus and better depth of field, a focus over that depth of field if you're trying to take a landscape shot or something in a larger field of view, but that's a problem if you don't have enough light. So that works great in the middle of the day, but at nighttime, it's an absolute killer. So it's not gonna work. So therein lies the dilemma. You get nothing for nothing. So in the end, it's represented as a fraction and the numerator F short for focal length over that diameter and the increments that it has are also in strange multiples and the whole idea of basing it on doubling in that area is it's actually, it's all about the area and the area is divisible you divide the aperture opening by the square root of 2 because of the square law and all that other stuff and I don't want to go through the whole area equation If you really want to, you can learn that. - You could do a whole episode on that. - I'm not gonna do a whole episode on that. I am not doing that to the listeners, sorry. I'm thinking of the listeners, Clay, I am. Anyhow, right. So F1.4, for example, F1.8, F2, F2.8. This is just the progression that they go through. F4, F5.6, F8, F11, F16, F22, and F32. - Some lessons don't go to 32, but yeah. That's true. That's true. So f/22 is the, I think is the most common where it stops. Right. Yeah. And anything less than f/1.4 is a seriously serious lens. Yeah. And you're probably gonna spend a lot of money. Yeah, you will. I think that the lowest lens you can buy is like f/0.9. Yep. Yep. Yeah. Which is insane. Yeah. But never mind. And that's what they'll say in the tagline. Insane bokeh. Yes, you would be insane to pay for that. Yeah. And also insanely unusable for most people. Yeah, man, exactly. That's also true. So anyhow, the whole idea is that if you double that area or half that area, then you will either increase or decrease one stop of light exposure. Yep. So I got not much else to add about aperture other than to say that you can get straight edges and curved edges on the little aperture blades. But beyond that, I haven't got much else to say about aperture. Yeah, so aperture basically gives you a plane of focus. And so if you're at 1.4, that plane of focus, depending on the camera, if it's a full frame camera, that plane of focus is narrow. So you could, depending on the focal length, depending on the sensor or film size, you could say the person's nose to the ear is in focus and everything else falls off gracefully depending on how the aperture blades are. Sometimes they're erratic because of the size of the aperture blade, the shape of the aperture blades, the number of aperture blades. So basically anything in front of this focal plane is blurred, anything behind it is blurred. So your goal is to try to have, let's say if you're doing a portrait, to have that person's nose hopefully in focus to at least their eye. Because having a blurry nose or blurry eyes sort of makes you feel like something is in - Disharmony, disharmony. And we're talking about artistic of course here, but sort of disharmony. (laughs) - But that's, no, hang on. I disagree that that is an artistic thing. I think that having a blurry eyes or blurry nose is extremely off-putting because- - It is. - Because when you're looking at someone with, we're cheating with stereotropic vision, with a camera that doesn't have that, where it's simply one lens, having the nose and different aspects of a person's face out of focus while other ones are in focus is extremely discomforting to look at. It just looks very unnatural. And I don't think that's artistic. I think that's just practical. It's like you want to have their whole face to be in focus. Yeah, true. Yeah. Yeah. We don't worry so much if the ears are out of focus because guess what? I mean, unless you're an ear... I don't know what do people who are into ears, unless you're into that sort of thing. I don't know. Isn't it always a thing? The existence of ears, I mean I have ears and they're functional. I don't know. Anyway, never mind. Yes, okay. People are into weird things. I'm sure they are. Never mind that. Yeah. So yeah, so for you know, if you're beginning photography, a new, you know, everyone always which one's shallower, depth of field. My advice always to people is just put your camera on F 5.6 and just learn how to use your camera at depth. And then deal with the shallower depth of fields later. - Yeah, I think that's good advice. All right, so the time has come for us to explain stops. We can't stop the stops forever. Okay, so I'm gonna, here's my take on it, and I just feel free to correct me where I am wrong, if I am wrong. So the amount of light, and I mean like the actual photons, the actual light that we use to illuminate the sensor from start to finish of our exposure, that is a function of essentially, well, primarily two of the three above, although according to who you read, all three of the above. And that can be referred to or thought of as stops or F stops. So to increase the amount of light exposed, you can either open the aperture up one stop, or you can leave the aperture alone and keep the shutter open one stop longer, or you can increase the ISO by one stop. And each of these things will increase the amount of light exposed by one stop. And by calling it a stop and halving and doubling each of those accordingly, it's an easy way to think about how do I simply get more exposure in terms of more photons illuminating the sensor in a sense. I suppose the problem is the idea of a stop is that, I guess you can take one and give to the others in roughly equal measures. I think that's the whole idea of a stop. At least that's my take on it anyway. - No, no, you're right. - Yeah, so it's kind of like, it's a bit of a light, it's like light accounting. I shall take some out of the aperture bucket and give it to the shutter bucket. And when I'm done with that bucket, I will as a very last resort, take some stops out of my ISO bucket, because it's the most annoying bucket that leads to too much noise if I'm not careful. And one of the other things that I think, I also find interesting is that it's used in the same parlance when we talk about things like vibration reduction or image stabilization as saying, well, if I use image stabilization, I get another stop. - Yeah. - And it's like, well, you do, but you don't. It's like you do because it means you can get away with a longer, with more of a shutter speed. Oh, sorry. With a longer shutter speed. Yeah, slower shutter speed. And that is technically a stop. But it's sort of an indirect thing. It's like, yes, because I've got vibration reduction, that's only really beneficial if I'm shooting handheld. I could also then get the same reduction by shooting on a tripod or a monopod, probably more a tripod. So, yeah, and that's what took me a little while to get my head around is that the fact that people use that interchangeably, they say, Oh, yeah, I, because I got image stabilisation, I got another stop out of my lens. And I'm like, did you? Not really out of the lens. You know, these manufacturers, they, you know, a lot of things are pushed by manufacturers. Now, if you look at Sony, or or any like Olympus with their Olympus and Panasonic with their in body stabilizations. I mean, they'll tell you, you will get five stops because basically you could probably handhold something that someone else would handhold at 150 if I guess, you can probably handhold it at one eighth or something like that, right? - Sure. - So, but again, it's not a true stop. It is basically as if, but it's not a true stop. - Yeah, exactly. And that's the thing. So another thing I thought of as well just then is you could use a wired or wireless remote trigger also, to also further reduce camera shake. 'Cause just the effect of pushing the button, tapping on the screen, that will also create vibration. And so all these things help you to essentially allow your shutter to be open a little bit longer. But if you're trying to capture fast moving action, I don't think it really makes any damn difference because if it's moving too fast and too bad. - Right. - If that's all to say about stops, I didn't have anything else to say, but I guess, you know, maybe just to play through a scenario. So if I'm indoors in low light conditions, fast moving action, I can increase my aperture stops as far as I can by winding it out to say F2.8, which is what I've maxed so I can go to on my 24, 70 mil zoom lens. And then that's my Tamron. And I can increase my shutter stops as far as I can, but I have to slow down that shutter speed, but I can't go any lower really than 1/500th. Otherwise I start getting motion blur because people are running too quickly. And that's not good enough. I can't go much lower than that. And so then after that, all I can do then is to add more stops by increasing my ISO. I've run out of light. I just can't do any more. And that's the reality. And I guess that's how the whole stop accounting is supposed to sort of work. I guess that's my example anyway. - Yeah, no, no, I think that's a good example. And basically there are trade-offs, the higher ISO, more noise, lower ISO, no light. So you have to sort of find the balance in there, figuring out. And again, also another trade-off, if you're at 2.8, that slice of focus is narrower. And then, so everything has a trade-off. You know, the shutter speed being too low, you have too much blur. Unless you, and the Nikon D500 has a great, basically, focus point tracking. So once you get that focus point to track, let's say your basketball player's eye, your son's eye, and you get the, like let's say you're doing lower than one 500th of a second, the panning here would benefit you by having his, basically his face in focus, having automatic following, that's basically what you wanna do is sort of swim along and have it slightly slower, but make sure to measure on the eye itself. You know what I'm saying? - Yeah, for sure, absolutely. So, I mean, to be perfectly honest, I found that indoor sports, for me, is the most challenging photography I've attempted. And it's like, this is my story, really, as to why I have what I have. And the reality is that I started out with a D5500 and going to a real camera because I wanna take photos of my kids playing sport. And that was fine. When they were out in the middle of a field, the field was, you know, even a big field with a, where I had a 55, 200 mil zoom, which is pretty good. And then I got a longer zoom, a 55, 300 mil. But of course, you know, by virtue of the fact that it's not a stupidly expensive zoom, I mean, we're talking about Australian dollars, like those 250 bucks for the 55-200. - And the Nikon 300. - Yes, and then the Nikon, there's a Nikon 55-300, was about $350. The fact is that that's a pretty decent amount of reach, but because it's not the most expensive lens in the world, the minimum aperture on that thing is F 4.5, which is fine when you're outdoors and it's nice and bright, But it's useless in any other environment. And well, I don't say useless, it's certainly very challenging in other environments. And so then I think, okay, well, I'll get a prime lens. So I've got a 35 millimeter prime lens. It can get an F1.8. It's a beautiful lens, great for street photography or a lot of different portraits. But the reality is like group portraits particular to an extent. But the fact is though, that it doesn't get me close enough to the action. And so I need more reach. And the only way I can get that is with my Tamron, which is 24 millimeter, 70 millimeter zoom, but it's a constant aperture lens and its minimum is F2.8. And so I will leave that way and down to 70 mil and I'll just live with the fact that I'm only ever gonna really have the face and upper body in full focus at any one time, but at least I've got that bit of extra reach. but even so F 2.8 is really not as good as F 1.8. And I did some comparative shots last week between the two lenses, between the 35 mil prime and the 70 mil, at 70 mil and F 2.8. And the difference is staggering. That is a full stop or thereabouts of light and it makes a huge difference. And so I think that for indoor sports in order to pull off the best possible shots that I can. I can't use a flash. The only option that I've got left is to go for a higher zoom prime lens with a lower aperture, lower stop. That's the only option I've got left at this point because the camera that I've got is very fast. It takes great photos in low light, but I'll never get past the, you crank the ISO, you're still gonna get noise. How far are you, how far, like now that you've had the camera for a little bit, how far are you comfortable, what are you comfortable with, what ISO? - I'm still feeling that out to be honest. I've only really had it for two games. I can't really answer that question yet, but-- - What was the other ones, ISO, that you were comfortable? - The ISO that I drew the line at rubbish. If it went, if I had an ISO of about 2500, it started to get too noisy for my tastes. And I had to go to that and above on the 5500, it just couldn't handle it. It just, the noise was terrible. This one, the D5500, I can crank that higher and the noise is nowhere near as bad, but it's a much better sensor on the 500 than on the 5500. So other photography that I find challenging night portraits, but you can get away with a flash. And if you've got a flash, then it makes things a lot easier, like a decent flash. Other examples of what you find challenging photography, there's a few other ones. - Yeah, boudoir, wildlife, underwater, oh, wow. - Yeah, underwater is hard. - And anything that involves flashes basically. But yeah, I mean, the funny thing is that like boudoir, I've never actually done boudoir. I've spoken to photographers who have done boudoir and I don't know. I'm not sure if I could do it. It's quite an interesting... It's interesting, but I'm probably not the right guy to do it. Fair enough. All right. There's one last thing I wanted to quickly cover that I realized that I hadn't covered previously and I probably got this out of order, but we're talking a lot about lenses towards the end here and the reality is that having a great camera body is really important, but I think to meet the needs that you have and you don't need to go crazy, but just when you do get one, if you're getting one and you're primarily using it for bright scenarios like outdoors, there's nothing wrong with a D5500 or something like that. there's nothing wrong with those cameras. They're a good camera and it did, it's still been well for a couple of years, it's really good. And when you invest in lenses, I've heard this, there's a popular, I don't know, consideration. And I think it's, I'm beginning to wonder if it's an actual consideration or if it's a false consideration from people that have just been photographers for too long. And this is, do you think ahead? And in air quotes, think ahead. So here's the scenario. I don't want to go and get a full frame camera because I'm predominantly doing sports. I don't want to lug all the bulky weight around. I'm not going to be doing much portrait photography. I'm certainly not selling my photos for money. It's hard to justify a full frame camera. So go for a DX. Great. I'm going to buy DX lenses because they're also cheaper because anything that's FX is automatically more expensive because it's slightly more glass. they generally make it out of better materials. Like there's more steel in them or at least more metal components, whereas, and more rubber, as opposed to the DX lenses which are predominantly made out of plastic. I mean, both of my 55, 255, 300, you know, zoom lenses, they both have plastic F-mount connection. You know what I mean? It's like, it's not even, I mean, it's hard and plastic. It's nice plastic, but it's still plastic. You know what I mean? Whereas the Tamron, which is built like a brick, but that's like a $750 lens. So, but my point is it's an FX lens. So you can fit that onto an FX. So here's the thing, if you're gonna go and invest money on a lens, should you get just the DX for your DX body or should you pay two to three times the amount of money and get an FX lens, just someday you might get an FX camera because I was thinking about this. And you can put, if you put a DX lens on an FX body, then you're gonna get a lot of aberration or you'll just get cropping. You will get distortion at the edges and you might not be able to fully illuminate the sensor because the hole is simply not big enough. It's designed for it. Like it'll physically fit. It'll physically fit on the mount, but you're not gonna get the same performance out of it. Whereas if you get an FX lens put on a DX, it's gonna be fine. Just overkill. Yeah, it is. You know, the funny thing is that if you look at every manufacturer out there, except for Canon, the DX body, the DX lens or the crop lens will work fine on the full frame body. Canon, the EF-S lenses for Canon, I don't think they do because I think the mirror actually would slap the back of that lens. And so yeah, but but for the most part, I would say if you're a DX shooter, if you can afford the FX bodies, sorry, FX lenses, and you think eventually you'll go FX, that's fine. But you know, the Nikon 35 millimeter DX lens is probably one of the best lenses out there. That 1.8 lens is a phenomenal lens for the price. Oh, yeah. I mean, that was the one I've got. So it was 300 bucks Australian. And that was new. And it was, it's a beautiful lens. I love it. I use it every chance I can get. So honestly, yeah, I think we should probably draw the line there. We could go on for a long, long, long time, but we've got to draw a line at some point. And I guess the point of the episode, for me to try and help listeners is that I feel, I felt, I thought I'd researched it, but I was woefully unprepared because I found that there are lots of articles and podcasts that are written by photographers and they have so much assumed knowledge that, you know what I mean? And the other problem that I had is that there's a couple of the podcasts that I listened to about photography. And they are like, here's an episode, we're going to do a whole episode on tripods. And I'm like, okay, you you could do that. But I'm really, this is just I'm trying to be pragmatic here. And the whole point of it is, is it pragmatic if you are just getting into photography to obsess over $1,000 tripod? I would suggest not. Nope. And so I have a $30 tripod, right? It's a crummy piece of junk, but it holds the camera off the ground. And in that sense, it is a very pragmatic choice. Hence, in terms of trade offs, I wanted to try and help present to people what I found in the last two and a half years of what I would call me learning photography. Calling myself a photographer, I would not. I would say I'm definitely an enthusiast. I'm definitely learning more every week and I'm enjoying it a lot. Plus taking photos of my kids. That's always fun. And some of the photos I've taken of the kids, I'm getting better and better and I'm getting better with my technique and I've got some really fantastic gear and it's great. And I think that I would encourage anyone, if you've only ever used a smartphone camera and you've thought to You know what? I wish I could take photos like, you know, like a professional photographer, but it's like, that looks really complicated, it's really hard. If you got a mirrorless or you got a DSLR and you took some photos with a prime lens and just some portrait photos of your loved ones, you will just leave me on a full automatic, you know, you will be stunned how good those photos look. And when I first took my photo, a few photos like that, I blew myself away. I looked at them, I can't believe I just took this photo. It looked so amazing because I was used to using a smartphone that's got- it's very flat. It's very samey. And this looked like a professional photographer had taken it. But you know what, it wasn't a professional photographer, it was me. And I'm not that, nor do I think I ever will be, but irrespective. So having said that, just be aware, and I guess that's the advice that I'd give listeners is the brands are all, they're all different. Start with one that essentially meets your needs in terms of you don't need super low low light photography, probably. You probably don't, if you're gonna take lots of portraits and so on, don't let people tell you you need to get a full frame camera. I would never start with a full frame. I just wouldn't. - I agree. - I can't see anyone just, yeah. I would also suggest starting with a prime lens and I suppose if you're doing sports, maybe get a small zoom lens, like the 55-200 is perfect to start for a zoom lens for me. And don't go crazy. And if it's not for you, that's okay. You haven't sunk too much money into it. But if it turns out that you really enjoy it and you can get so much better photos, and those are memories that you can keep for the rest of your life and for your children and through their lives. And it'll be far better to have a photo, a nice photo of your loved ones that otherwise would have just been a spec in the distance or a washed out smartphone, very flat, dull looking photo. And you'll have that for the rest of your life. You've captured that memory. And that's something that it's hard to put a value on. - Yep. - I don't know. What do you think? - No, I agree. I think, you know, any of these entry-level DSLRs or mirrorless cameras, and you know, Sony has a whole bunch of them, Fuji has a whole bunch of them. I think it's better to explore, even actually if you were to go for something like a one inch sensor that Sony and Nikon has cameras that are one inch sensors, it's still going to be better than anything, your camera phone, which is basically not even a fingernail size sensor. All of that stuff is computational, especially if you were to look at things that Google is creating. They're all basically computational photography. And I don't know. I mean, look back at your iPhone 3G pictures, your iPhone 4 and 4S pictures. A lot of them don't stand the test of time. They just don't. Mike: No. Guy: But look at your DSLR or any point and shoot camera that has a sensor that is much bigger than an iPhone. Even the 2/3 inch sensors that Fuji and Nokia has, and Nokia has some of their phones, which I'm not sure how many of them they still use, and Fuji had point and shoot cameras, Nikon had point and shoot cameras that had that size sensor. They're all going to be better than a camera phone. Absolutely right. So, I think the only other point I'd like to make is that one of the common refrains is that I think the expression is the best camera is the one that you have with you. And I think that that's universally true. However, I whenever I go to kids sports, I have my phone on me. So, and I don't always have my camera, my nice camera on me, but I usually do because I go there with the intention of using it specifically for that purpose. So I accept the fact that the best camera is the one that you have with you. But if you accept the fact also that you always have your smartphone with you, 'cause I, well, I do, and I think most people do at this point, you always have a camera with you. So getting into photography or not cannot be based on the idea that you will always have a camera on you. So why should I lug around this big, heavy other thing? It should be based on, I'm happy to carry around this other thing from time to time because I wanna take the best possible photo that I can because that moment in time will pass. And I wanna make sure that I capture the best possible picture of that moment in time that I can. At least that's the way I see it. - No, I agree. I agree. A lot of times these phones sort of decide for you exactly what the picture is going to look like. You can manipulate it by actually using other apps, not using the standard. But again, it's not like, I mean, I don't know how it is on Android. I've never had an Android phone, but on the iPhone, it would be extremely ideal if the iPhone said to me, you can choose which camera is going to be your main camera. Because while the iPhone's camera is fine, there are far better cameras out there in the app store that would maybe make the iPhone sort of a more ideal camera, right? And it's not like you swipe from the right and have the camera from the lock screen. But you're swiping into the standard camera. And so I think that yes, the camera is, any camera is better than no camera. And all of us have smartphones, which means we all have a camera. But if you were to explore and go further, and especially go into a system that allows you to wirelessly transfer the pictures you took to your phone, that would also be an ideal situation, more ideal situation, I should say. - Yeah, for sure. I mean, I think if you wanna share photos on the spot, it's hard to beat the low friction of having it in a smartphone that's got a 3G, 4G, LTE, whatever connection to the rest of the world. But the other problem that you've got, the flip side of that is that even if you can wirelessly transmit them on the spot when you're out there taking the photos, even if you can do that, you've also got, Well, these are, if they're JPEGs, they could be anywhere from 10 to 25 meg in size. And that's not exactly Instagram shareable. So I don't know, I see the argument, but at the same time, I thought, I was thinking to myself, I guess this is just my process, is I'll come home and I'll go through all my burst photos on the flashed SD card, and I'll just scrub the ones that I don't want, and I'll have all my keepers. But the reality is that, 'cause I tried the whole wireless thing, like the Nikon Snapbridge, It's really not everything that's cracked up to be, but it's kind of frustrating to be perfectly honest, like setting up the wifi and all that. I know there are better systems out there, but the Nikon's is pretty rubbish. That's just my experience. - Sony's is not the best either. I think all of these companies are, they're not thinking about us, the users, you know? They just want to put a feature on the box and say, there you go. - Yeah, wireless transfer, tick. - Yes, exactly. - Alrighty. Alrighty. Well, if you want to talk more about this, can reach me on the Fediverse at [email protected] or you can follow engineered_net on Twitter to see show specific announcements and we've recently started a YouTube channel if you're interested in that. If you're enjoying Pragmatic and you want to support the show you can via Patreon at or one word with a special thank you to all of our patrons and an extra special thank you to our silver producers Carsten Hansen, John Whitlow and Joseph Antonio and a special thank you to our Gold Producer known only as R. Patron rewards include a named thank you on the website, a named thank you at the end of episodes, access to raw detailed show notes as well as ad-free high quality releases of every episode, with patron audio now also available via individual breaker audio feeds, so if you'd like to contribute something, anything at all, there's lots of great rewards and beyond that it's all really appreciated. There's also other ways to help like leaving a review or rating in iTunes, favouriting this episode in your podcast player app, or sharing the episode or the show with your friends or via social. All of these things help others to discover the show and can make a huge difference too. I'd personally like to thank Backblaze for sponsoring the Engineered Network. Remember to specifically visit this URL, backblaze, or, to check it out and give it a try. Don't take a chance with your data, start protecting yourself now and don't wait for a few months like I did, start today. I'd also like to thank Solver via Qualia for sponsoring the Engineered Network once again. You've tried a calculator and a spreadsheet but if you haven't tried Solver yet you're missing out on a great app that fits perfectly with the way your brain actually thinks. Solver for iOS is available through the App Store and the newly updated Solver 3 for Mac is available from the website. If you use the URL in the show notes and it helps out the show, so please use that URL in the show notes to learn more about this helpful little app. And if you visit that URL before the 30th of June, 2019, you'll get 33% off. So act now and don't wait. Pragmatic is part of the Engineer Network and you can find it at And you can follow me on the Fediverse at [email protected] or the network on Twitter at engineer_net. Now, if you'd like to get in touch with Clay, what's the best way for them to get in touch with you, mate? CWdaily everywhere. So, you know, Instagram, Twitter, if it's a social network, I'm probably there on the CWDALY. And if anyone's looking for some of your photography, what's the URL for them to have a look at some of your photos? or yeah, I mean, I guess you can go look at Instagram. But yeah,, look on there and look at the portfolio or sometimes in my blogs. Tyrone: Alright awesome. And of course, people that follow me will know that Clay is one of my co-hosts from Bubble Sort as well which is another podcast that we do with Vic Hudson. And Clay also has another podcast that he does specifically about photography. - Mm-hmm, yeah, through my lens with Clay Daly. And it's a sometimes touchy feely. And yeah, go check it out. Through my lens with Clay Daly. Everywhere that podcasts are available. - There you go, nice. All right, fantastic. All right, well, thanks for that. And a special thank you again to our patrons and a big thank you to everyone for listening. And as always, thanks for coming on, Clay. Really appreciate it. - Thank you so much. Yeah, thanks so much for having me. - Anytime, mate, anytime. [MUSIC PLAYING] (upbeat music) [music] (upbeat music) (dramatic music) (upbeat music) (upbeat music) (upbeat music) (upbeat music) (upbeat music) (upbeat music) [Music] [MUSIC PLAYING]
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Episode Gold Producer: 'r'.
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Clay Daly

Clay Daly

Clay is an avid photographer and podcaster. His photos can be found on Instagram and at his site. Clay’s other podcast can be found at Cybrcast, Through My Lens, Harm Less and Just Clay, and is a co-host of BubbleSort.

John Chidgey

John Chidgey

John is an Electrical, Instrumentation and Control Systems Engineer, software developer, podcaster, vocal actor and runs TechDistortion and the Engineered Network. John is a Chartered Professional Engineer in both Electrical Engineering and Information, Telecommunications and Electronics Engineering (ITEE) and a semi-regular conference speaker.

John has produced and appeared on many podcasts including Pragmatic and Causality and is available for hire for Vocal Acting or advertising. He has experience and interest in HMI Design, Alarm Management, Cyber-security and Root Cause Analysis.

Described as the David Attenborough of disasters, and a Dreamy Narrator with Great Pipes by the Podfather Adam Curry.

You can find him on the Fediverse and on Twitter.