Photo Gear Page

Canon 5D Mark ii Digital SLR

I should have bought a 5D years ago.

It’s no fun to spend so much on a camera, but in the case of the 5D I have no doubt that the improved image quality and HD video capability will quickly and easily pay for itself.

So far I’ve done two big trips to Komodo National Park and a traverse of the Philippines from Palawan to Apo Island and have been amazed at the image quality that the combination of the 5D and 16-35mm L lens can produce. The depth of colors, sharpness and incredibly low amount of digital noise in the photos is incredible.

It’s even better than the color range and quality produced by my old favorite Fujichrome Velvia slide film. Anyways, enough raving about the 5D, suffice to to say that the price is definitely worth it.

The Pros:

  • Large, easy to see viewfinder, easy access to camera controls (compared with the menus you have to navigate on the Digital Rebel), better weather sealing, easier to handle (again compared with the Digital Rebel), works with all Digital Rebel lenses.

The Cons:

  • Hmmm… Tough to come up with a complaint for the 5D, but if I had to stretch it I would say that the only downside is the large file size of the photos (they’re 21 megapixels of course!). But that extra file size also means drastically improved image quality so it’s definitely worth it–good thing hard drives are so cheap these days!.

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Canon 70-200mm L Series Zoom Lens

The Canon 70-200mm L is the best zoom lens I’ve ever owned, and it’s no surprise that it’s a lens you’ll find in the camera bag of many professional photographers.

I don’t worry about it getting damaged by salt spray, light rain, or other difficult travel conditions because it’s sealed and weather proofed. The “L” series are the highest quality lenses that Canon builds, so the photos are sharp and always have great contrast. I’ve used it for everything from street photography in Lijiang, China, to portrait and surf photography in Indonesia and couldn’t be happier with the results. If you’ve never tried a Canon L series lens, this is the one to start with.

The Pros:

  • Excellent image quality, sharpness, and contrast; weather-sealing, fast auto-focus.

The Cons:

  • Relatively expensive (when compared with non L-series lenses).

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Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM Ultra Wide Angle Zoom Lens

Open up my camera bag when I’m out shooting and it’s more than likely you’ll find the Canon 10-22mm super wide-angle lens attached to my camera. Wide-angle shots capture the spirit of a landscape and are the best for giving your viewers the feel of “being there”.

I also use it for portraits because you can fit both the person and a lot of the background in the frame. Another advantage for portraits, you can get away with not pointing the lens directly at your subject so they are likely to be more comfortable in front of the camera. The only complaint I have about this lens is the distortion you can sometimes see around the edge of the frame because the focal length is soooo wide.

The Pros:

  • The widest angle you can get with an inexpensive Digital SLR like the Digital Rebel or Canon 60D.

The Cons:

  • Distortion at the edges of the frame because the lens must compensate for the smaller sensor, only works with the Digital Rebel series lenses and the Canon 30D, 40D, 50D, and 60D.

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