The new camera: First try


All photos can be enlarged, by clicking on them, and they look much better that way.

It wasn’t raining on Thursday- hooray! I was pleased to get out with Ollie, and keen to try out my new camera purchase, the Sony RX 10. Unfortunately the absence of rain did not guarantee good light, as you can see from the available light in these photos. The mushroom above was quite majestic, as large as a dinner plate. But it was so dark around it, I had to hand-hold at a slow shutter speed. The ‘Steady-shot’ feature on the camera seems to have avoided excessive blur though.

Keen to try out the faster aperture of the Zeiss lens, and hoping to get better background blur, I shot these berries at f2.8, with the lens zoomed out to 200 mm. As you can see, focusing was ‘tricky’.

Nearby, a bee helpfully landed on this purple thistle-like flower just as I took the shot. That’s why the insect is rather blurred though, and his landing moved the flower head slightly too.

One of the interesting things about so many modern cameras is the ability to use the ‘gimmicks’ they provide in the menu. These flowers were taken using ‘Partial Colour- Yellow’, which has rendered the surrounding foliage in black and white, making the flowers stand out.

At the side of the bridge, I switched to ‘Partial Colour- Green’, to make the moss and painted metal fittings prominent.

I will be trying more of the features, if the weather continues to improve. For anyone interested in my first impressions of this camera compared to the Fuji X-30, read on.

I took 90+ photos in two hours, mostly using the large f2.8 aperture, to see how well it worked. I deleted all but 20 or so, and chose these examples for the post. Compared to my lighter and cheaper Fuji, with a much smaller processor, I am not hugely impressed with the difference. The Sony tended to underexpose, rendering darker images overall. This was partly user-error of course, as I should have experimented with exposure compensation more, but wanted to see the straight results first. I think the standard film setting on the Sony renders brown and black quite well, with the Fuji doing much better with green, but often giving browns a ‘ginger’look. The monochrome setting on the Fuji is also less satisfying, with a rather ‘flat’ finish to jpegs.

Looking through the viewfinder of both cameras is a joy. The Sony has a very good focus confirmation indicator, as well as a gyroscope style orientation device that I liked a lot. Compared to the Fuji, the shutter button is very light, and very easy to activate when half-pressed for focusing. Talking of focus, the single-point focus area in the Sony seems to be very small, and I will have to be careful of that in the future. So, I could be happy to only have the Fuji, that’s for sure. It delivers great results from a much less-specified package. However, the Sony has a wonderful lens, and the extra zoom range proved very useful. I just need to get used to it, tweak a few settings, and pray for better light!

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62 thoughts on “The new camera: First try

  1. These are great shots. I particularly like the bridge — doing it in partial B&W brings out the metalwork, and makes it look a bit surreal somehow. I think the “partial color” thing is cool, sometimes really useful, and anyways, I love gadgets of any kind, never met one I didn’t like! Have a good week Pete

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  2. Good to see some of the first results. The partial colour feature is certainly an interesting one. I really like what it did to the bridge. Not sure that the murky water was improved, though 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. No, the water doesn’t look good. It was actually very clear that day, and the bottom was visible. Thanks for commenting, Ros. early days with that camera, I will keep trying.
      Best wishes, Pete.

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    1. I don’t print anything at home, Elizabeth. I only have a very basic printer, still attached by a cable!
      If I want a print made, I go to a print shop, and they ask about the levels of sharpness required, and colour saturation. But I haven’t had any done for years now (Since 2010) as it is very expensive. I do own a version of Adobe Photoshop Elements, but I have no interest in manipulating images at all. I just use it to resize the photos for putting them on the blog. The original files are too large, and take a long time to load.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. They are best on the day the open up, after that they are often eaten by bugs, as the article points out they are easy to identify by the smell. I also seem to remember that they were very common in fields where sheep are kept, must be something in their poo!

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    1. Thanks, Susanne. The mushroom didn’t work at all, but I posted it anyway because it was so impressive! I was quite excited by the ‘Partial Colour’. I will try that again, I’m sure. Turning off all the artificial sounds, like focus beep and fake shutter click, is well-worth doing when shooting pets or wild animals and birds. We always forget how much better their hearing is, and those noises are intrusive to them.
      I am really pleased that you liked them.
      Best wishes, Pete.

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    1. I have no idea if you can eat it, Jude. I tend to avoid all wild mushrooms, applying the ‘just in case’ rule. Mind you, if anyone can tell me that it is edible, I would happily pop over and pick it! Glad you liked the partial colours, it was my first attempt.
      Best wishes, Pete. x

      Liked by 1 person

        1. I know the ones with the red and white caps are poisonous, but that’s about the extent of my knowledge. I should study them I suppose, as there are so many around here. But they are only 90p a box in Tesco’s… 🙂

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  3. Like you, I was brought up in the film era. And that means that I am reluctant to push the ISO up beyond 400 or so. I think you’ll find that you should get perfectly acceptable jpgs up to 1600 or even more with modern sensors and processors. It would solve your shutter speed issues. There will be some degradation, obviously, but they should be OK for posting online.

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    1. Thanks, Ian. I have the ISO on auto on the Fuji, and it has a tendency to use 800 as a default. That said, the photos have been very acceptable. I might try the Sony on auto too, and see what it ‘suggests’
      Cheers, Pete.

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        1. Using a phone can produce some amazing results. However, I love all the switches and dials, and the feel and look of the engineering that goes into cameras. My favourites are the ‘retro-styled’ ones, that hide all the technology inside, retaining the buttons and bits and bobs that make it still feel like a ‘real camera’. One day, I might save up and get one of these.
          https://www.olympus.co.uk/site/en/c/cameras/pen_cameras/pen_f_cameras/pen_f/index.html
          Best wishes, Pete.

          Liked by 1 person

  4. Well, I don’t think you can make your judgement until you have spent more time with the camera, Pete! And do you always use auto settings, or do you ever use manual exposure? And any post processing??

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    1. I rarely use manual, except on the SLR. I like to select an aperture, then normally adjust using the exp/comp dial. Other than reducing the size for posting on the blog, I use no post-processing at all, and shoot only in jpegs. I don’t enjoy messing around with photos using Photoshop, although I know that most digital users do.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I’ve got to give you credit Pete!! Good for you. I’ve never been very good at taking pictures, so I bought a new aim-and-shoot camera when my old one broke and I still am having trouble getting pictures to focus!!! How bad is that?!! lol

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    1. You may have to go through the menu system on your new camera, GP, and select the focusing point. Most modern cameras are very good at auto-focus, and have improved a lot on the early models.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Try to find ‘single shot’ autofocus in the menu. Once that is set, when you half-depress the shutter button, the focus should lock onto what you want to be in focus in the frame. Keep your button half-depressed, then you can re-compose the shot, before firing the shutter. Or send me the name/designation of your camera, and I will investigate the user manual.
          Best wishes, Pete.

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  6. A good start Pete. I am not a great fan of selective colour but I like that yellow flower shot, it works well there. I don’t know about the Sony but my fuji has a single point focus that can be widened so check your manual and see if you have that too. Look forward to more pics!

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    1. It’s the first time I have used any selective colours, and I tend to avoid most camera gimmicks, to be honest. Thought I would have a ‘play’ with this camera, for a change. I will investigate the focus options in the user manual again, you can be sure of that.
      My thought that I would get better background blur with this lens seems to have worked though. On the Fuji compact, f2.8 is only available up to the 35mm distance setting. To be honest, I am still getting used to the hangover from using full-frame film cameras, with spot metering, and manual exposure. Although both are available options on the Fuji and Sony, I want to try out more ‘settings’.
      Many thanks for your thoughts.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

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