equipment recommendation – Is there such a thing as a flashbulb case or a convenient way to carry and organize flashbulbs?

Does anyone have any tips for transporting flashbulbs? I want to carry a small selection without having to smash multiple cardboard boxes into my small bag or losing track of which is which.

Where there ever flashbulb cases? I have a shop and I’m pretty handy so I could make something but a starting point would be nice.

I’m trying to transport M-series bulbs. (M2, M3, M5, etc.)

equipment recommendation – Is replacing all my Fujifilm gear with this Canon zoom lens an upgrade?

Would switching to full frame Canon and getting that lens be an upgrade over my Fujifilm gear?

For some shooters it would be. For others it would not. For a true photographer it shouldn’t make a ton of difference either way. They’ll do good work with either. One system may make doing that work easier than the other, but the work you are describing can be done perfectly well with either set of tools mentioned in the question above.

Please take note, I used the word ‘photographer’ above, not the word ‘professional’! ‘Professional’ just means you’re getting paid. It says very little about the quality of your work and a lot more about your business, marketing, and social skills.

Charles W. Leadbeater said, ““It is one of the commonest of our mistakes to consider that the limit of our power of perception is also the limit of all that there is to perceive.”

The problem with some folks is that they are so limited that they assume everyone else has the same limitations that they do. They also assume that their way of doing photography is the only way, and that the type of photos they take are the only types of photos worth shooting. Since one of the basic rules here is that we’re supposed to be nice, I won’t say any more about the person who, unsolicited, advised you to dump your current setup that is working perfectly fine for you in order to start using what he apparently needs to validate in his own mind as the best way to go about it.

Now, about gear.

While it is true that better gear won’t make you a better photographer, it is equally true that any photographer is limited by the capabilities of the gear being used.

There’s an old saying that has been around photography for a very long time:

Gear doesn’t matter.

It’s certainly true, but it is only half the truth. The rest of the truth is this:

Gear doesn’t matter – until it does.

When the technical capabilities of your gear are not up to the task for the shots you want to capture, then and only then will the gear matter.

When your gear does matter, you’ll know. It will matter because the gear you are using will limit you from doing work that you wish to do and that you have the skill and knowledge to pull off. Until you reach that point, the gear you are currently using is perfectly fine for you.

For more, please see: When should I upgrade my camera body? The answer there is just as equally applicable to lenses or entire systems.

Additional reading:
What features would cause a portrait photographer to choose a DSLR over Mirrorless?
Should I buy a new DSLR or spend the money on a photography course with my point & shoot?
Will I see enough improvement moving from EF-S to “L” lenses to warrant the cost?
How does focal length relate to macro magnification?
the best way to improve image sharpness on Canon 700D

equipment – What is the upkeep cost of a mount, animal companion, or familiar?

Additional creatures have the same upkeep as any player character

Companions, hirelings, familiars, and any other creatures traveling with the party should be accounted for when expending resources such as Rations and water. Paizo did not include any specific rules regarding larger creatures eating more, so it is up to the GM to determine if 1 week of rations is enough to feed your Large Boar for a week or only 3 days (as an example).

Most other maintenance is handwaved as part of the rules for Cost of Living and Subsisting. Other potential costs, such as stabling, are outlined in Services.

The bottom line is that, for an adventurer, the costs of maintaining allies should be minimal. Beyond the first level or two, unless your group has fun with micromanagement, it is unlikely to be relevant (except maybe for a long stretch of Downtime).

equipment recommendation – What types of camera support exist to help a photographer with onset of Parkinson’s disease?

Your best bet is appropriate medical treatment to control symptoms. Aside from that, just like everyone else, you should consider a solid tripod. You can also lean against solid objects (trees, walls) to increase your stability.

The tremor in Parkinson Disease is a resting tremor. When you are actively using your muscles, tremor should be absent. Other symptoms include rigidity, bradykinesia (inability to move quickly), micrographia (tiny writing), reduced balance and coordination, tendency to lean forward (and fall over) when walking.

If you have early-onset Parkinson Disease, bradykinesia and rigidity are likely of greater significance than tremors. These could result in both peripheral (arms and legs) and central (core body) instability.

Consequently, the following are unlikely to be helpful:

  • Solutions that primarily address tremor (because tremor is not the primary problem).
  • Solutions that depend on core stability, such as monopods and body braces.
  • Solutions that require carrying rigs around (because of poor balance, coordination, and core stability).

If you have something resembling essential tremor, rather than resting tremor, you may benefit from consulting your neurologist for further explanation. Note that Parkinsonism is distinct from Parkinson Disease, and there are many conditions that can present similarly.

equipment recommendation – Is there an easy way to hold a stabilizer?

I recently purchased this stabilizer in order to shoot some video footage:

The stabilizer is easily balanced and I am not using all the counter weights since I shoot with a lightweight mirrorless camera. Yet after using it for a few minutes I feel a pain in my arm so I can not continue holding it steadily.

I have seen many videos in YouTube which demonstrate how to hold and move with it, yet none mentions the fatigue which shortly appears.

I wonder whether it is what it is or if I am doing something wrong. Maybe a gimbal would be more easy to use?

Any tip or personal experience sharing would be appreciated.

equipment recommendation – If I’m buying a single ND filter, which stop is most versatile?

First, your environment: my own experience traveling tells me that there’s quite a bit more light closer to the equator. I’m going on memory here, but I feel like there’s typically 1+ more stops of light in Florida than in Connecticut. It’s hard to know what equipment to bring when you aren’t already there, but I suspect you’ll find Hawaii has quite a bit more light than the UK. That may impact your choice about what filter to get.

Second: I think digital has changed needs (at least my needs) for a ND filter. With film, switching to a faster film was undesirable because you so often had to give up that film’s characteristics. So, having an 2-stop ND4 (as well as a bunch of other options) made sense: above all else, I don’t want to adjust ISO, so finding a variety of filters to let me get the exposure I want is the only way to get the results I want.

Digital is different — I can change ISO at whim and get what I want with minimal differences. A 10-stop ND filter can easily prove to reduce the light too much. But by bumping the ISO up (while still using the filter) you are able to get the exposure desired. The big compromise is deciding if that 10-stop range would take you into an unacceptably high ISO to get the correct exposure.

Think about that for a minute: a 10-stop ND filter combined with ISO flexibility then means that your camera range is now (10 stops below it’s base or low value) to (base or low value) all the way up to the camera’s (high range value). More clearly, a Nikon D800 has an extended range of ISO 50 to 25,600. Add in a 10-stop ND filter and adjustable ISO and you can hit a range of ISO 0.046875 to 25,600. To reach an effective ISO 25 (one stop below base level) you would need to use the 10-stop filter and ISO 25,600, which is likely going to be a poor photo because of the level of noise introduced! Adjusting shutter speed and aperture may be an option to maintain a lower ISO, but that won’t always be true.

A 10-stop filter is a huge jump. A 2-stop filter is going to serve a very narrow range and won’t be stretching ISO to also hit 1-stop below base. A 3-stop filter is, I think, more useful because the capability is greater but compromise is still equally small.

One more thought: a polarizer typically takes about 2 stops. It’s clearly not a replacement for a ND filter, but I have used it for that purpose on more than a few occasions.

equipment recommendation – Budget Camera for Drone Cinematogrraphy?

(I’m not sure if this should be posted here or on Video Production)

Having been working on a cinematography drone build this summer, I’m thinking about eventually upgrading from my GoPro Hero 4 Silver. I mean, you can get GoPro video pretty cinematic, but even then you lack control of some basic settings and (especially) lenses, which are essential for getting good video.

So, what I’m focusing on is something light (Drone is on the ZZD550 frame with 4108 600kv motors, up to 5s LiPo, and some gimbal) and I’d probably want 4k(or 2k)/24fps. My budget is around $250, I’m fine with used. I’m thinking that if I can get a gopro (4k/15ps) for around 100, then I should be able to sacrifice waterproofing and compactness for a bit better video at a similar price.

I’ve thought about getting a Ribcage for the gopro (or one that’s already modded) but maybe I should just get the right tool for the job, a “real” camera?

Lastly, am I just asking too much for my current drone to carry? I haven’t built it yet so I don’t have an idea of its lift capacity. On top of that, I’ll be using a gimbal. So, lots of emphasis on lightweight.

What would you recommend? Thanks!

equipment recommendation – Telephoto lens for a cropped sensor

Having a “hole in the middle” is more trouble than you could possibly anticipate as a newbie. Believe me, I did it & my hole in the middle was only between 55mm & 70mm.
For some bizarre “Murphy’s Law” reason, everything you ever want to do seems to fall into that hole.

There is, of course, the inevitable GAS [Gear Acquisition Syndrome] that means we always really, really need just one more lens… but at least start with a one-size-fits-all lens that doesn’t leave such a sizeable hole.

I eventually [after first buying 2 others that weren’t as good] went for what I now call my guilty pleasure lens, the super-zoom Nikon 18-300mm.
It’s not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but it does mean if I’m on walkabout I only need the one lens with me, rather than my whole bag. Focus speed, low light usability & VR are all better than you’d expect. Image sharpness is really OK & only softens right out at 300mm.

Of course, it’s not as fast as the 2.8 zooms, but you end up needing all three of those, at about 7 grand if you get the Nikons.

Garden equipment and machinery

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Garden equipment and machinery