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Equipping the Bike - what's the best gear? Anything to do with the bikes equipment, saddlebags, etc. Questions on repairs and maintenance of the bike itself belong in the Brand Specific Tech Forums.
Contact Overland Solutions for all your custom modifications and setup for overland travel.

Giant Loop Motorcycle Saddlebags & Motorcycle Tank Bags: Panniers, Soft Luggage for Adventure & Sport Touring

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  #31  
Old 26 Jul 2011
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Originally Posted by PocketHead View Post
Specifications - Nikon D90 vs Sony Alpha NEX-5

By removing the mirror you can have the same sized sensor within a much smaller unit.
Its interesting that they have managed to get a DX sized sensor into a relatively small form camera. Certainly in doing that they have bridged a part of the gap towards DSLR quality. Having said that, I often bemoan the fact that the DX sized sensor gives notably less impressive results than DSLRs with the even larger FX sized sensor.

But there are other drawbacks to the smaller camera. One of the other primary advantages of a DSLR is its speed. Speed to turn on, and speed to respond when you press the button.

Startup delay 300 ms vs 1000 ms
Shutter lag 208 ms vs 441 ms

So if something interesting starts running across the road, the D90 has been turned on, started up and got off a shot within half a second, as opposed to about 3 times as long with the small form Sony. I have missed too many shots in the past with cameras that take too long to boot up, and then the shutter lag is too slow to capture that key action shot.

Also despite the advantage of the same size sensor, the 4 actual image quality scores (rather than stats) at the bottom of the page are all in favour of the DSLR.

So you still dont really have the image quality, or that critical speed of operation. And a very limited supply of lenses (3) that are specially made for the smaller form cameras, which may or may not be compatible with future models. At least with Nikon or Canon DSLRs you pretty much KNOW any lens you buy will work going forward. There must be thousands of lenses that will fit a D90.

And on lenses, lenses are as much or bigger part of the bulk and weight than the actual camera body. The advantage of the smaller body is diluted the more lenses you take.


I see the attraction of smaller form cameras, but I also see a lot of downsides to them. For someone who just wants to take one camera and not have it too large, yet still get good quality, stuff like this or the lumix gf2 can be great options. But for me, I prefer to take 2 foto cameras. A small one, and a good one. And for me, there is no substitute for a DSLR when it comes to that "good one". If anything I would prefer to go up in size (and weight and performance) to an FX camera, rather than down. I chose the D90 because its the cheapest and lightest of the possible DSLRs I would want to use on the road ... so already, the D90 is a compromise in favour of cost, size and weight. It already is my cheaper, smaller and lighter "good" camera. I would like to be using a D700.
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  #32  
Old 26 Jul 2011
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What I found usefull.

I downloaded the Tomtom app on my iphone. A back up to the handlebar mounted GPS unit, also usefull when walking around towns/cities when all other gear at accomodation.

Best Biking Roads (BBR) App.

Road Trip App. Calculates fuel consumption, converts fuel cost to home currency, maps refuelling stops etc.
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  #33  
Old 26 Jul 2011
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Originally Posted by colebatch View Post
Its interesting that they have managed to get a DX sized sensor into a relatively small form camera. Certainly in doing that they have bridged a part of the gap towards DSLR quality. Having said that, I often bemoan the fact that the DX sized sensor gives notably less impressive results than DSLRs with the even larger FX sized sensor.
For me it's all about value, personally I would rather spend $500 on a camera that takes good or even great photos anywhere I want than $4000 on a full-frame camera which takes excellent photos but takes up lots of room, is unsuitable for taking to bars etc and has high risk, if I were to lose or break a $4000 camera it would have a seriously negative effect on my bike trip, also buy taking a cheaper camera I have all that extra money to enjoy!

I started off with a point-and-shoot + DSLR but found it to be a pain in the ass because you have multiple chargers, cables, SD cards, all the photos come out with different filename standards and in different resolutions. It really adds a lot of time to the workflow which could otherwise be spent, well, drinking I suppose.

Quote:
Originally Posted by colebatch View Post
But there are other drawbacks to the smaller camera. One of the other primary advantages of a DSLR is its speed. Speed to turn on, and speed to respond when you press the button.

Startup delay 300 ms vs 1000 ms
Shutter lag 208 ms vs 441 ms

So if something interesting starts running across the road, the D90 has been turned on, started up and got off a shot within half a second, as opposed to about 3 times as long with the small form Sony. I have missed too many shots in the past with cameras that take too long to boot up, and then the shutter lag is too slow to capture that key action shot.
That's assuming you have your D90 handy, where as a smaller camera will likely be far more accessible. 1000ms is only 1 second, any extra time removing a larger camera from it's pouch or whatnot will far surpass that 0.7 seconds difference. Also overall the specifications of the NEX in the shootout have surpassed those of the D90, so what you're losing in one respect you are gaining in another, for example the 7fps vs 4.5fps continuous shooting is more relative for taking photographs of fast-moving motorcycles than a little extra boot time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by colebatch View Post
Also despite the advantage of the same size sensor, the 4 actual image quality scores (rather than stats) at the bottom of the page are all in favour of the DSLR.
It's still well within DSLR quality standards, bettering by far the image quality of DSLR's such as the D3000 or Canon Rebel XS. The D90 is a mid-range DSLR and the difference is minimal, the difference between the D90 and the NEX 5 sensor is less than the the difference between Nikon vs Canon sensors, yet the NEX is 30% cheaper and much, much smaller.

Quote:
Originally Posted by colebatch View Post
And a very limited supply of lenses (3) that are specially made for the smaller form cameras, which may or may not be compatible with future models. At least with Nikon or Canon DSLRs you pretty much KNOW any lens you buy will work going forward. There must be thousands of lenses that will fit a D90.

And on lenses, lenses are as much or bigger part of the bulk and weight than the actual camera body. The advantage of the smaller body is diluted the more lenses you take.
This is true except when I began traveling with my DSLR I found I was carrying a 50mm 1.8, 10-20mm wide angle and 18-55mm yet only ever really using the 18-55mm. For motorcycle travel I will seriously reconsider which lenses I bring. With that said the NEX has another 3 or 4 more lenses coming, as it's only a newly released camera.


Quote:
Originally Posted by colebatch View Post
I see the attraction of smaller form cameras, but I also see a lot of downsides to them. For someone who just wants to take one camera and not have it too large, yet still get good quality, stuff like this or the lumix gf2 can be great options. But for me, I prefer to take 2 foto cameras. A small one, and a good one. And for me, there is no substitute for a DSLR when it comes to that "good one". If anything I would prefer to go up in size (and weight and performance) to an FX camera, rather than down. I chose the D90 because its the cheapest and lightest of the possible DSLRs I would want to use on the road ... so already, the D90 is a compromise in favour of cost, size and weight. It already is my cheaper, smaller and lighter "good" camera. I would like to be using a D700.
Yes, it's really just a difference of opinion on how you prefer to travel, personally I feel that less is more, gives me more time to enjoy myself at the end of the day and less time worrying about 'oh geez where did I put this' or trying to cram thousands of dollars of electrical equipment into my hostel locker, or going to the supermarket while having to worry about all my gear being in my tent at the campsite. This is why I would chose the NEX, it has DSLR quality (slightly less than the D90, but still DSLR quality), and will fit into my pocket with the pancake lens, or my camelbak with the 18-55mm.
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  #34  
Old 28 Jul 2011
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Cut the plugs off and install xyz,
Simply brilliant, I'm on it, love tips like that it makes my day

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  #35  
Old 30 Jul 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by colebatch View Post

I see the attraction of smaller form cameras, but I also see a lot of downsides to them. For someone who just wants to take one camera and not have it too large, yet still get good quality, stuff like this or the lumix gf2 can be great options. But for me, I prefer to take 2 foto cameras. A small one, and a good one. And for me, there is no substitute for a DSLR when it comes to that "good one".
2 cameras is the way to go for me, too. A Canon 5D with 3-4 optics, flash, etc on the tank bag, and another small pocket-size digital.

Image quality on that SLR (especially in low-light situations) is just so superior, for me it has made it worth the hassle.

That said, digital cameras are advancing technically all the time, and you might be able get almost (~90%?) same quality from a much smaller/lighter/cheaper setup these days.
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