Yamba, on the far Northern NSW coast, is a very pretty place. I took an hour or so and came back with a few nice images.
Macro isn’t a really strong point of the D-Lux, but it’s not bad, either. The control over the Aperture and the fast lens makes for nice bokeh and shallow depth of field.
The pelicans around Yamba aren’t worried by people wielding cameras – at least not too much, otherwise I would never have made this image, which was shot from just a few metres away. This image is a tweaked JPEG – if Aperture supported the RAW files, I would have used that, but this looks OK.
The D-Lux does nice black & white in camera. In this image I’ve used the red filter option, which has darkened the sky very effectively.
I have access to a huge range of incredible photographic tools – Canon Full Frame and Olympus m4/3 systems, video cameras, many lenses, flashguns, filters, tripods… but on holidays this Christmas all I’ve brought along is the Leica D-Lux (Type 109, aka Panasonic LX100).
I use the bigger equipment for work, and I enjoy my work, but this holiday is about the family. It’s about getting out on our 30 year old trailer boat, riding some bicycles, walking along the beach, swimming and surfing and drinking and eating too much.
The sort of things most Australians do at Christmas.
So I brought along the little Leica, a polarising filter and a tripod (which are the first two accessories I recommend to anyone taking up photography – before you buy a second lens, buy a tripod).
Anyway, I’ll publish a few images here and maybe I’ll even talk about how they were captured.
I got up early for this one. The Type 109 has bracketing easy to get to in the drive menu – I set it to seven frames, 1 stop apart. It defaults to shooting at a fast frame rate, so a few seconds later all the images were captured. I used aperture priority – ISO 200 @ f/16. I wouldn’t usually use such a small aperture, but I wanted the decking sharp, so I needed depth of field to run from about 50cm (under 2 feet) to infinity. The seven frames were combined in Photomatrix Pro, tweaked, and cropped to 16×9.
I’m in Melbourne, Australia, on a business trip – no shooting. But I’ve brought the little Leica and thought I’d post anything interesting. Nothing here ‘professional’, just glorified snaps which show off the camera’s capabilities.
Nothing bright here…
Using an in-camera filter to enhance a dull scene.
I bought my Leica on a Friday, so on Saturday I made a video – a very short, unremarkable video.
Except it tracks along, as though on a slider, stops when I’ve walked into the frame and wave, then starts sliding again.
I sent it to a couple of filmmaker mates who’d both picked it – all the sliding is done in post. It would have been a nightmare to make such a shot in 1080, because I wouldn’t have been able to slide the camera. It was achieved because I could crop the 4K.
For the past three months I’ve been making Cycle Torque TV, a low-budget motorcycle TV show. Catch it at here.
The show has been successful enough that I think we will be starting production on series two soon, and the little Leica will have a staring role as the go-to camera for pieces to camera with a wide, mid-shot and close up in the same take with the same camera.
It can go on top of a lightweight tripod and stay stable. And the experiments we did In the studio today show with careful set-up of white balance and exposure, I think few viewers will ever be able to tell it apart from the 5D shots it will be combined with.
After just a day with my Leica D-Lux (Type 109), I’ve found features most of the online reviews missed, and discovered things I thought would be there which aren’t.
I’m sure you know about the 4/3 sensor, 4K video, dial controls…
No remote flash support
Look, I doubt I’d have used it much, but if the Type 109 supports remote flash, I can’t work it out. Mind you, the included strobe is so gutless it probably won’t actually add to the exposure much if you use it to trigger slave units though.
A lens shutter
There’s effectively a pair of shutters in the LX100/109 – a mechanical leaf or lens shutter, and an electronic shutter. This means flash sync up to 1/4000th of a second, which is really cool when doing fill flash outdoors. It works to 60 seconds.
The electronic shutter will take the exposure to as short as 1/16,000th of a second, which I want to try Real Soon Now – that’s studio flash duration style stuff, and will result is some stunning images. By people better at this stuff than me.