Nearly two years ago I had an accident with my digital SLR which resulted it a dead body and the loss of a good lens. I set out on a personal experiment to see just how far I could push the iPhone 4 camera. I was surprised with the results. However, it limited my subject matter. The iPhone camera can not handle telephoto work or low light work.
For the past two years I have not photographed wildlife, sports, or night time subjects.
This is a shot the iPhone wound never have done … at least not well. It’s a typical long exposure (20 seconds at f9 with ISO 200). It has exceptional grain and range. It was shot with a Nikon D700 using a 20mm prime lens.
I’ve watched the digital camera market evolve and needed to find a price:capability ratio I could live with. My challenge was I wanted great low light capability, low noise, high ISO, and full frame. In short, I wanted the digital equivalent of my old Nikon F4s. Oh, I almost forgot … I wanted it at an affordable price.
The Nikon D700 had all of the capabilities I was looking for but at $3000 it missed the price point by more than the proverbial broad side of a barn. Then came the D800 and the possibility the price of the D700 would drop. It didn’t drop much. However, after a long wait, the D700 started showing up on the used market. A trickle and then a steady flow of used D700 cameras were being sold. It took a while to find one that was not demanding a premium price or had not been run out … and one that was in my definition of affordable. Two months of watching eBay finally resulted in a deal I could be comfortable with.
There are two features of the iPhone that the Nikon can’t touch. First, the iPhone is always with me so even if it is not the perfect camera for the shot, it will often be the best camera available. Second, the iPhone was WiFi and Cellular data service which means I can post to the blog, email, or share on Facebook without having to transfer the photo to another pice of equipment first.
Life is seldom perfect, but if you keep your eyes open, it is often beautiful. And for those that want perfection, there’s Photoshop