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Showing posts from 2009

Last Night of 2009

^Last night in 2009, the whole town dashed out to the street to cherish the year before it was gone.It is just past midnight into the new year 2010.  I'm staying in a Starbucks after joining the countdown.  Everyone shouted from 10 to zero and cheering filled every space in the air at the tick of twelve.  Happy new year!^Even the neon-light signboards seemed especially bright and cheerful last night.^Decorations hanging overhead near the cafe.^Staff were busy making coffee for the long queue of customers.  Every seat was taken.  Tables meant for two were seated by four.  A side table not meant for customers was turned into a makeshift cafe table for a pair of lovers.^There is a common saying in Cantonese to describe this scene which is, literally, "people mountain, people sea".^The crowd was leaving after the countdown.This is 2010.  Again, happy new year!

GF-1: Image Quality with Full Size Photos

After being (as always) verbose yesterday, I'm going to prove to you what matters most for a camera by showing you some full-sized photos taken by GF1.My impression is that the optical strength of the 20mm prime lens surpasses that of the 14-45mm lens not by much (but by just enough).  Both are Lumix lenses.  The Leica lens for the MFT system supposedly fare much better.  I had not a chance to test the Leica lens unfortunately.The photos taken with the 20mm lens are here, which include a RAW file.  For comparison purpose, I uploaded a JPEG and RAW files of the GX200 to the same folder.The photos taken with the zoom lens are here, which include two RAW files.If you're doubtful about the performance of the lenses, some photos taken by Nikon's AF-S 70-200mm f/ 2.8G VR II ED are here, here and here for comparison.

When Impressive GF-1 Meets Striking Girls

The GF1 has lots to impress users, which we will go through in this impression series. As an advocate of serious compacts, I have no hesitation in recommending a buy. Until I can try the GXR, which I bet inherits the first-class ergonomics, I have found the GF1 superb in most aspects of the control layouts which include the menu system and the disposition of the buttons. The menu system is easily understood and more likeable than the GRDIII particularly in terms of the much bigger font size. It has five function sections each of which splintered into several pages. By rolling the back wheel, hopping from one page/ section to the other in the menu is blissful. The tab-type menu layout, together with the page number indicator on the upper right corner, makes the menu-surfing anything but confusing . I will give 4½ stars out of five for its menu system, with the caveat that Panasonic doesn't give users the elbowroom to customise the preferred functions in a quick menu or the Fn…

GF-1 User's Impressions: Introduction

It has been some days since I picked up the GF1 and accessories on loan by the local sole distributor of Panasonic cameras. If I am to finish an user's impressions in a few words, I would say that returning the GF-1 will be rather saddening because of its superb image quality and larger sensor in a smaller body. But, as always, it is a beautiful rose not without thorns.The GF1 feels absolutely solid and well-built in hand. The way the camera body evenly weighs is likable to any photographers unless he or she has been using only compacts. The camera has to be operated by both hands though, especially when the zoom lens is mounted.With the 20mm (45mm equiv.; really fast at f1.7) lens mounted, the GF1 weighs the same as my GX200 with the wide converter. Well, a better reference can be made by the following photo:With the Lumix 14-45mm (28-90 equiv. at f3.5 to 5.5 with OIS built-in) lens, the GF1 gains a few decimal pounds:Such weights compare favourably with a regular APS-C-sensor DS…

Selected Excellence: Comical Hong Kong

The photos are taken by a Hong Kong photographer FU Chun Wai who published them in his book Comical Hong Kong.Have an enjoyable Sunday!

Unboxing Girl Friend Day

^The EVF comes with a leather case while the lenses and external flash with their own pouch.Now that the Christmas holiday is over, the busyness subsides a bit. On Boxing Day, what's better than posting some photos of unboxing the GF-1 and the paraphernalia on loan to us?So here are photos of the GF-1 and some comparison photos of it versus other serious compacts.Compared to LX3The GF-1 is bigger in all dimensions.Compared to G10G10 is larger in size than the GF-1, except for the extra size of interchangeable lens.Compared to GX200The GF-1 is bigger, taller but as wide in length. When the GX200 is attached with the wide converter, both cameras are almost comparable in size.GF-1 with the external flash onObviously, GF-1 becomes quiet big with the external flash on.

Merry Christmas with Girl Friend no. 1

Merry Christmas from GX GARNERINGS to readers from around the world!  Whether you're having a Christmas celebration with friends or having a family get-together today, don't forget to make use of the opportunity to take great photos.  If you're using Ricoh cameras, be sure to send one to ricohforum for the photo contest for December themed on Christmas decorations.If you're observant enough, you'd have noticed that the photos here were taken with the Pany Girl Friend 1.  GF-1, that is.  I am carrying around the camera and testing it.  There are some gobsmacking and, naturally, gripping aspects as I can see having used it for a while.After thoroughly testing it, I'll find time to write an user's impressions in a journal sort of way.  For the time being, I still have days to…well…play with the Girl Friend.  My thanks go to Hong Kong's sole agent of Panasonic cameras for the loan.

Be Still, Busyness

^I like the wide perspective of this image with the blurry motions of passers-by.The incessant preparations for the Christmas Party and presents have been  going on for some time.  What a paradox we are so busy preparing for a festival of peace!As usual, I carried my camera around to the shopping, with the 19mm wide converter attached to it.  If you are using a camera with the possibility to add on a wide converter like my 19mm one, I'll surely recommend you to go for one.  It'll afford the images what I think a penetrating perspective into the scenes.^Decorating the street is a character from the book of a famous Taiwan Cartoonist Jimmy.At the same time, I looked for scenes to shot some photos about Christmas decorations for the monthly photo contest organised by ricohforum.  Oh, if Hong Kong is the hub of anything, it is first and foremost the hub of Christmas decorations.So despite the busyness, it is a season of peace.  But if you are doing shopping, thinking about what fo…

Let's Go to Hell

Christmas is a festive time to think about nativity and religion. In this city which is now a part of China, it is fitting to talk about the Chinese religious culture. The photos in the post are all about death in a way, mostly the unique paper offerings which you may not find them around unless you befriend a local who knows the way.This is the third post of an educational series to give you a glimpse into China's mysterious colours of folk religious beliefs.  You may be also interested to read some related old posts are here, here and here. ^Look what the dead will get from the paper offerings…sodas! Heineken!  The concept of hell in Christianity is for the unconverted whereas the Chinese version of hell is a place for all the deceased to "check in" (more on this later). Most interestingly, this hell is open for the living people from the temporal world to visit (Do the ghosts throw parties for the open house?). Therefore, unlike the hell in Christianity which is a pai…