My my, how things have changed over the last year!
I like to write this article every year for fun. I don’t really believe in exchanging gifts for Christmas except for very rare instances (parents, nieces & nephews). I’m all about sharing my time with friends, family and charity organizations during the holidays. But I still have fun with my Christmas wish list. It’s just fun. And you never know if Santa is reading. <br>
Last year was mostly about business needs. But this year, I’m going to expand on the reason for the gift. It will be even more fun…. Let’s start with the obvious..
When I look at last year’s post about this, it’s feels like someone else wrote it. But then again, much has happened. I’m glad I didn’t receive any of my wishes from this section last year.
Really? A Nikon? Absolutely yes. The reason is simple: a fantastic sensor that competes with the best Medium Format has to offer.
I wasn’t initially impressed with the Nikon D8XX series. But with the plethora of fantastic lens released this year, the sensor really does shine the way it should. When you compare images from MF to the Nikon D810 using excellent lenses on each, it’s much tougher to differentiate between the two.
In the next few months, I will have a blog article devoted to the Nikon D810 and my reasoning why MF is out of my picture (haha) now.
Sony RX100 MK4 I recommended this camera to a friend recently as a terrific super-portable travel/street camera. Though I had actually never held it in my hand. Until recently…
I was at B&H Photo recently shortly after I recommended the camera. Honestly, I was quite blown away when I used it and saw the images in the rear display. The colors and lens were nothing short of fantastic. The build quality is superb. The articulating screen is going to be fantastic especially for raising the selfie-game.
This camera is so capable and tiny. I’d carry it everywhere. All the time.
Zeiss Otus 85mm f/1.4/Milvus 85mm f/1.4 The reason why the Nikon D810 now shines. I had this on my list last year. While it would’ve improved the image on my Canon 5DMKII, it would be completely overkill for that sensor.
I haven’t seen any side by side comparisons between the Otus and Milvus Zeiss lines yet. But I’ve seen images from the Milvus and I’ve been impressed. The 85mm Milvus is a better version of the already stunning and older 85mm Planar. I’m sure there is a reason why the Otus is 4x the cost. I just haven’t seen it yet.
Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 IF EX DG HSM If Zeiss were to build a zoom lens in this range for DSLRs, this Sigma would be it. Well, except for the plastic construction. And that plastic construction is not a bad thing in this case. The Sigma is a fantastic event lens and thus, you’ll be carrying it for long stretches of time. Your hand/arm will definitely feel the weight after a few hours of holding it.
But you’re rewarded with that look that resembles a Zeiss lens. Lots of contrast and saturation. I haven’t seen or used any 24-70mm lens I would use instead of the Sigma as my go-to event lens.
I didn’t include this category last year. With photography and computers being integrated with each other, it’s quite necessary. And it adds to the fun!
Other World Computing ThunderBay IV The QNAP TVS-871T 8-Bay Thunderbolt 2 was originally on my list. But at this point, it’s completely overkill for anything I would throw at it. But the OWC would be a fantastic system in the meantime giving me blazing performance and good data protection. On top of having a Thunderbolt 2 connection.
Monitors The Dell UP3216Q 4k monitors have been coming for a while and for consumer use, they are all the rage this holiday season. But for professional use, I think they still have a ways to go. If I were to get one right now, this would be my choice.I currently use an Asus ProArt 249 24″ monitor which is about as good a professional-level monitor you can get without getting into the ridiculous pricing. In terms of options and capabilities, the Asus is far and beyond the 7-year old 20″ Viewsonic I had before. But in terms of everyday usage, it’s not a huge jump. The size difference is probably the biggest plus with the Asus.
With the research I did, I thought 24″ would be a nice jump. Unfortunately, the 27″ version of the monitor was my first choice. But at almost double the cost of my current monitor, I couldn’t justify it. I thought I would get two 24″ monitors eventually. But for editing photos in portrait and landscape mode, 24″ isn’t large enough. I think 27″ is the minimum for doing this kind of work. Sure you can rotate most professional-grade monitor. But it’s a hassle.
The Dell will be the 4k version of my current monitor with an extra eight inches in size. I’d have to see more reviews on the monitor before seriously settling on it. If it performs as well as it seems, I could keep this monitor for many years. At a couple of years, I’m already looking to upgrade my Asus. A good monitor should be in productive use for at least 5 years in my opinion. And it’s cheaper to own in the long-run.