Used Gear: Staff Picks

Every day we add new, used gear to the sales floor. It comes and goes so fast it’s hard to keep up with letting you all know what cool things are coming in. Here are a few that our employee, Kyle thinks are worthy of the blog! We’ll try and keep up with staff picks for the foreseeable future but make sure to follow us on Facebook and Instagram to see what we’ve been posting on social media.

The Contax T2 – We’ve seen some clean film point n shoots come through the store…this one is real clean. Here’s a reason why you should buy a Contax T2 : Reasons to buy a Contax T2. This thing has quick focus, a sharp lens and a sleek design.

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Nikon D500- If you’re shooting sports or wildlife professionally or just for fun at your son or daughters sports event…the Nikon D500 is going to get you the images you want. It packs an APSC size sensor giving you extra reach on the long end of your telephotos. 10 fps at 20.9 MP for up to 200 frames in raw format…it’s hard to miss the moment when you can shoot for that long. This body as a shutter count less than 6,000 SHUTTER ACUATIONS(clicks). 

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LEICA MP and ELMARIT-M 24mm F/2.8 – This lens camera combo would make you the king of the street photography world. It’s stealthy, lacking the word “Leica” or a red dot of any kind on the front. Here’s a good review on the MP.

 

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SONY A7RII– You probably already know about the Sony A7RII. 42 megapixels, in-body stabilization, FULL-FRAME, expanded ISO of 102,400, 4k in-camera. We’ve seen a lot of these come in with the recent release of the A7RIII. The multiple bodies we have are clean and in good working order.

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CANON 7D Mark II– The Canon 7D Mark II is another great option for sports or wildlife photographers. It has a 20.2MP APS-C CMOS Sensor, shoots 10fps, built in GPS, magnesium alloy body construction. Slap the next item on the list and you’d have a killer set up.

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(CANON) SIGMA SPORT 150-600mm – BEWARE: This is a hunk of a lens. It’s heavy, OKAY?! The colors that come out of it are amazing though, it’s weathered sealed, the hood isn’t made of plastic, focuses fast, and on cropped-sensor bodies, focal-length equivalency is approximately 240-960mm.

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We’ve got plenty of more where this came from, but you know how busy the camera store can get. REMINDER: All of our used gear comes with a 6 MONTH warranty, covering everything besides accidental damage. Feel free to call us anytime asnd ask what’s in our cases!

 

Happy Photo Taking!

Englewood Camera

 

 

Fujinon XF 16-55mm f/2.8 R LM WR Lens Review

Fujifilm has been quite the brand the last few years, with the introductions of mirrorless APS-C cameras X-Pro 1 and X100. These cameras revolutionized the digital market, appealing to traditional rangefinder photographers (myself included). I’ve been a Leica M shooter, using an M6 with film, and it’s a system I love and can’t seem to abandon. However, my employment at Englewood Camera allows me the unique opportunity to demo gear when it comes in, and I was very fortunate to take a Fujifilm X-T1 with a few lenses to Europe this month. I can’t say enough positive things about this system–and though I haven’t made the commitment yet, I’m definitely one step closer.

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Continue reading Fujinon XF 16-55mm f/2.8 R LM WR Lens Review

Preorder a Sony A7 Mark II Today

Sony is starting shipments on the brand new A7 Mark II–the latest in its full-frame mirrorless camera lineup. Put your name on Englewood Camera’s waitlist today!

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Key features:

Continue reading Preorder a Sony A7 Mark II Today

Fuji Instax Share Printer SP-1

With innovative new products, there’s an instant film revolution happening all across the country! Englewood Camera carries instant film products from both Fujifilm and Impossible Project, including cameras and film. However, Fujifilm recently developed the Instax Share SP-1 printer–a very cool, very compact device that prints instant photos on Mini Instax film–directly from your WiFi enabled tablet or phone! We decided to test drive the printer and show you fun examples of how it works!

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Here’s what we found:

Continue reading Fuji Instax Share Printer SP-1

Lens Review: the new Lomography Petzval Lens

Englewood Camera is pleased to announce that we are currently offering the new Petzval 85mm f/2.2 lens from Lomography. Last year, Lomography launched a Kickstarter campaign to recreate a classic portrait lens, based off of 19th century design, for modern digital cameras. This campaign was largely successful, and Lomo started shipping these brass lenses in August 2014.  We received our first shipment, and staffer Erin Brinkley-Burgardt took the lens out for testing over Labor Day weekend. For portrait photographers, the results are absolutely stunning.

Annie © Erin Brinkley Photography
Annie © Erin Brinkley Photography

Continue reading Lens Review: the new Lomography Petzval Lens

A test run with the new Sony A77 Mark II

Englewood Camera employee (and Sony guru) Holli G. took the new A77 Mark II with the 16-50mm f/2.8 for a test drive last night. Her preliminary thoughts on this camera are very positive; while aimed at a prosumer market, the A77 Mark II handles very much like an A99.

Continue reading A test run with the new Sony A77 Mark II

Tamron 150-600mm: A must have lens for wildlife photography

In December, Tamron USA announced the launch of an exciting new super telephoto lens: the 150-600mm f/5-6.3 Di VC USD for digital SLR cameras. Some of the features of this lens include:

  • Cutting edge e-BAND coating (extended bandwith and angular-dependency) to significantly reduce unwanted light reflections that cause flare and ghosting
  • Vibration Compensation (VC) image stabilization
  • USD Ultrasonic Drive for fast, accurate autofocus
  • 9 blade aperture ring for gorgeous background blur effects
  • Employs 20 elements in 13 groups: delivers a superior balance of resolution and contrast for sharp, clear images
  • Contains three LD (Low Dispersion) glass elements (two in the first group, one in the third) in the front group for enhanced optical correction effectiveness, enabling the lens to thoroughly compensate for on-axis aberrations at the telephoto end
  • Upgraded cosmetic design with tungsten silver brand ring and new rubber grips for the focus and zoom

Englewood Camera is expecting shipments of this lens in Canon mount soon, and we hope to see Nikon mount lenses in April! Please call us or stop by the store to add your name to our pre-order list. The Tamron 150-600mm will retail for $1069.99.

See sample images below (supplied by Tamron USA). You can also read reviews from Ian Plant and Peter K. Burian for more information and images.

Frosted bison portrait, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

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Fujifilm X100s Camera Review

Back in May, we posted a review on the Fujifilm X100s camera. This was our most viewed post in Englewood Camera’s blogging history, but since we’ve changed our blog URL, we decided to share the review on our new site.

At this point, Englewood Camera has sold more than 45 of these popular cameras; this has been our best selling camera in such a short amount of time. The X100s first hit the shelves at the end of March 2013. Englewood Camera currently has the X100s in stock, but hurry! These cameras don’t stay on the shelves for long. Cheers!

A weekend with the Fuji X100s

By Erin Brinkley-Burgardt

I was lucky and able to borrow a Fujifilm X100s, the newest and highly coveted camera in Fuji’s X-Series lineup for a recent trip to San Diego, California. For the past 5 years, I have been shooting a Canon 5D and 5D Mark II full-frame DSLR, which we all know is a cumbersome setup. I’ve lugged my camera gear across the world, shooting with heavy L-series lenses. For the last year, I’ve been keeping an eye on the Fuji X-Series system, contemplating a smaller, lighterweight digital system, but I haven’t taken the plunge because of the APS-C sensor size. Never one to compromise quality, I’ve packed around (what feels like but probably isn’t) 50lbs of camera equipment to ensure the best images I can make. For this trip, I was offered a loaner X100s camera, and could not say no!

A blurb about the Fuji X100s: this camera is a compact, with an SLR type APS-C sensor, 23mm f/2 lens, and a optical/digital viewfinder reminiscent of classic rangefinder cameras.  This is the replacement for Fuji’s first camera of this type, the X100, and Fuji made some serious upgrades with this new model. The camera has a 16.3MP X-Trans CMOS Sensor, similar to the X-Pro 1 and XE-1 models in the line-up, but added a new feature on the sensor called on-chip phase detection, which allows faster auto focus (a big improvement from the X100). In addition, Fujifilm added a new processor, the EXR Processor II, for overcoming lens diffraction and peripheral aberrations. Fujifilm also added two tools for more accurate manual focus–focus peaking and digital split image focusing. The first, focus peaking, is a display that outlines the in-focus elements. Digital Split Image Focusing, on the other hand, shows a black and white area within the viewfinder, much like old viewfinders, that line up when in focus.  You can find a full review, with the technical specs, on dpreview.com.

So, back to my review.

Once again, I loaded my Domke inserts into my Chrome bag to travel. I packed my 5D Mark II with two lenses and flash, and my Leica M6 with some film, and slipped the Fuji X100s into my pack. I was fortunate to have a rental car and not have to trek around on foot with all of this gear! My first day of shooting was along the southern California coast; I stopped at Laguna Beach to check out the tide pools, and slowly unpacked my bag, pulling out the 5D Mark II first. After shooting some frames with the Canon, I packed it away and settled on the X100s–and didn’t put it away the rest of my trip!

I started using the X100s in manual mode, controlling the shutter speeds and aperture myself, but it didn’t take long for me to switch to aperture priority. Though both the optical and electronic viewfinder on the X100s are clear and easy to view, I had a difficult time reading the light meter. It’s located on the left side of the viewfinder, and is a white overlay–a bad combination for those of us used to a green meter over solid black.

The response time of the auto focus, plus the response of the shutter was very quick. There is a slight delay with the shutter, but it definitely didn’t slow me down or bother me at all. The X100s is fantastic for street, travel or landscape photography–the lens is sharp, rivaling my L-series glass on the Canon. The color straight out of the camera is spot on; where my Canon leans towards the warm color spectrum, the Fuji remains neutral. In post, I didn’t have to adjust the color, or sharpness, at all. This is a welcome relief, as I prefer to shoot as best as possible in camera to cut back on post production time.

I never had time to test out the original X100, but from the reviews I’ve read and complaints I’ve heard, the X100s is a definite upgrade. I played around with the manual focus, using the Digital Split Image Focusing setting, and found it easy to use and quick to focus. I struggle with manual focus on most digital cameras because I can’t see what I’m focusing on very well. The split image lines up much like a rangefinder, and I’m used to that type of manual focus from my Leica. I mainly experimented with manual focus in lower light situations, as the auto focus preformed very well in daylight.

Let’s look at some example shots I made with the X100s. This first image was shot in macro mode, which works very well and retains detail across the frame.  I was very impressed. The new X-Trans sensor eliminates color moire as far as I can tell, and the dynamic range is solid (good detail in the highlight and shadow areas across the image). Click on the images to see full size.

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Another look from my examples was from an afternoon spent in Encinitas, CA, just north of San Diego. This is one of my favorite beaches–it’s home to surfers and not often crowded. There were kids taking surfing lessons after school, so I hung around to make some images of the surfers and the landscape. For this shooting situation, I was grateful for the X100s. My Canon would have been very obtrusive in making candid photos of people. The Fuji is quiet, small, and doesn’t look like much, so I went undetected in my picture making. In the picture below, the subjects were walking about 5 feet in front of me.

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I also tested the X100s’ performance in low-light conditions. I visited the Bernardo Winery, one of the oldest wineries in California, and made some photos in their tasting room. The only lighting in this room came from a few old wine bottles that had been made into lights, and  from natural light coming in through a few windows. I upped the ISO between 800 and 1250, and shot a few images hand held. Below is one example, shot at ISO 800, at 1/60s, f/2.8. The image is sharp, and retains detail throughout the whole image.

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Here’s another example of glass grapes with lights, shot at ISO 1250, 1/60s at f/2.0. Pretty impressive for a wide-open aperture and faster ISO.

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I also tried out a long-exposure with the X100s. While I was in California, I drove towards Palm Springs and stopped off of I-10 and Twenty Nine Palms Road in Desert Hot Springs to photograph the windmills by night. Silly me forgot a cable release, but I set the camera on the roof of my car to shoot a 30 second exposure of the windmills (with I-10 in the foreground). I was very impressed with the results. The reflection is from the car roof, but has an effect similar to water.

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Now for a landscape shot that I wasn’t totally impressed with. I love to photograph palm trees; I spent my childhood in California, and palm trees are one thing I miss living in Colorado. The first shot below was taken with the X100s. It looks good at first glance, but look at the zoomed in version. There is definitely a loss of detail at infinity when comparing the shot with a similar version shot with my 5D Mark II.

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This is the full image from the X100s. When cropped in (below), you can see a loss of detail in the palm leaves, as well as a halo effect around the trunks of the trees.

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This is a similar shot from my Canon EOS 5D Mark II with an EF 85mm f/1.2L.

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You’ll notice that the crop from a full-frame camera is much more usable. There’s detail in the palm leaves, and no halo effect.

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Overall, I’m very impressed with the quality straight of camera on the X100s. This is definitely a professional grade camera, and a good companion for street photographers and landscape/travel photographers (aside from the limitations seen above). 35mm is my go-to focal length, and is perfect for street and travel photography. I’d love to test this out at a wedding–I think the compact size and quiet shutter would allow for great candid shots. Again, I did not alter the color or sharpness of these images in post production; everything was shot in RAW and converted to JPG in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4.

Englewood Camera sells the X100s for $1299.99 and is the Premiere Elite dealer of Fuji products in the Denver metro area. The cameras have been coming in and going out the door very quickly, so call for availability and to possibly have your name added to a wait list.

If you want to check out the archive on Englewood Camera’s previous blog, click here.