Panasonic Vs The Vegetable Assassins

on May 01, 2018
Why do we do this to ourselves? Why do we plant roses in garden beds and enthuse over them? The plants are 98% stabbing pains for every 2% bright colour or sweet odour. And their demonic spikes do nothing to deter their natural enemies - the aphids. Aphids climb over the spikes with impunity. The rest of us lose jumpers and forearms to them. Here's the only thing in the front yard that was not clawing at me. Ah, well, at least the things provided a little colour for the Panasonic GX-9K camera and Lumix G 30mm f 1:2.8 ASPH Mega O.I.S lens. This is serious micro 4/3 stuff with a dedicated close-up lens - expect perfection. And perfection that is easy to use in a walk-around package. Of course, if you are a dedicated photo enthusiast, easy to use, convenient, and simple are terms that mean nothing to you. The real zealot will carry lead-acid batteries, GPS unit, softboxes, and studio strobe kits up the side of a mountain to capture a toadstool. You may complain bitterly if your designer coffee is ten degrees off the right temperature in a city café but you will sit all day in a wet cave waiting for something to bloom. But spare a thought for the people who just want to succeed without looking cool. They want to point and shoot. If they do it with the Panasonic, they may even beat you at the game... Pardon me while I pause for a Tilly. Ah, that's better. Note that the 30mm lens has a minimum aperture of f:22 and there is a circuit in the camera to deal with the effects of diffraction. Sharp from front bumper to rear canvas. This is what a true macro shooter wants. It may not be the artistic end-all but you want it in reserve when sharpness is the goal. Note also that the rose was shot hand-held and with the pop-up flash sending in highlights. Those shooters who pooh-pooh popups are missing out on great little aids in the field. You never can tell when art will strike. The other real blessing in the field is the tilting viewfinder. It's the closest thing to a good old-fashioned waist level finder with focusing magnifier like we had on Hasselblads and Edixas - you peer down into a world that is cut off from the extraneous sunlight and can concentrate far better on colour and composition. The Panasonic has an easily accessed manual focus lever. It also has a central section that magnifies the focusing point - you can nail manual focus very easily. I did for some of the plants but left the camera to its own AF devices when doing the Tilly shots. BTW, my initial skepticism about tilting LCD screens has entirely changed - now that we can have them tilting out in the same plane as the long axis of the lens and not to the side, I am all in favour of them in the studio. The screen might chew up a bit of juice, but composition is so much easier. And note the external flash synch block. One final little point - while this camera also is using the USB adapter to camera to charge the battery internally, you can get external battery charges, and I would advise you to do so for the operational convenience of being able to use the camera while a spare battery is getting juiced up. But the door that covers the electric and signal ports is unique - it slides in to reveal the connections - you cannot leave it out in the open to be torn off on your clothing. Smart thinking, 99!