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Old 12-18-2012   #41
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I like to carry a camera that fits the occasion. Traveling with just a backpack around Europe, a good compact (I use a Minolta AF-C) and a 6x6 folder takes up almost no room and gives me what I need.

Trekking for a few days in the mountains. Still a folder. Hard to beat in regards to weight and quality in areas with no electricity.

I find it to be a wonderful freedom to be able to carry my entire luggage with ease. Makes me look like a backpacker/hobo when traveling. Therefore my cameras must be small and light. Film is usually better considering that.
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Old 12-18-2012   #42
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Mixed bag really, on one hand I like simplicity of film, not worrying about batteries, and also no temptation to sit in the hotel room reviewing photos where I should be out doing something. On the other hand, digital means you don't have pre-pick an ISO, you don't have to ensure you have enough film (SD cards are easily bought from the hotel lobby shops, Velvia, not so much), and digital, you can back up anywhere you have an internet connection which is fast enough. Film, well, there is no real backup solution, not on the move anyway.

Depending on where you are, a digital camera can be replaced easily, assuming your tastes are not too exotic, film camera, probably not so easy.

On balance, I think digital suits travel better, but I'll still stick to film for it's other qualities.
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Old 12-18-2012   #43
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I've done both in the past, but nowadays I favor film for traveling. The biggest difference in my experience, is that film is less of a distraction - I take a shot and move on, feeling much more 'in the moment' of my vacation.

I always found that digital would distract me - I'd be anxious that I hadn't got the 'right' shot of a certain place, and in the evenings I'd sit and look through the day's images with a certain angst that I'd missed something.

This also meant that my vacation pictures were somewhat stale to me even before I got home.
In contrast, I love getting my negatives back from the lab and scanning them at leisure - sometimes discovering great beach images in the middle of a chilly winter.

Film cameras are also generally more reliable than digital, and SD cards can be corrupted, mislaid or dropped more easily than a roll of film. One time in Barcelona I used the (upmarket) hotel's PCs to generate DVD backups of my cards, and when I got home and back to my Mac, found that virus files were plentifully present both on the DVD disks and the SD cards. (I know to lock the cards if I ever need to do anything similar in the future).

I think generally a totally mechanical and manual film camera will always outshine a computer-cam that needs constant recharging and backing-up.
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Old 12-18-2012   #44
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for short few week holiday, guess it does not matter much, film or digi. but for longer travel, digital is a must IMO. having computer/tablet (+ all chargers etc.) is good to have with anyway. never thought of doubling the chargers like someone above, only usb-disks for space and backup.
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Old 12-18-2012   #45
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For ease or convenience, I don't think one is a clear winner over the other, unless you are taking your tablet or netbook with you . . . then digital has to win. At night, copy off the day's SD card while changing for dinner, and there you go. Even post some snaps to you 'blog ( ? ) or send an email snap to the folks back home.
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Old 12-18-2012   #46
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I have the family with me, so taking time out for uploading files will be frowned upon. This is the most critical factor for me. I want my wife to enjoy the traveling. I wonder if the responses above may slightly differ with the family factor included.
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Old 12-18-2012   #47
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Well, then there's the cost/time of processing the film, scanning it, etc.

They both have their strengths and weaknesses, in my opinion. But yes, if by less complicated, you mean while out and about shooting, then I would agree.
Exactly the last sentence. And if I'm longer abroad I will send the exposed rolls by registered mail directly to my developing and scanning provider. Or to my home address.
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Old 12-18-2012   #48
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As long as you can have all your film hand checked at the airports its fine but other than that digital is more practical , having said that i regret my trip to Mexico wasn't shot on film.
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Old 12-18-2012   #49
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You don't back up your films whilst travelling, so why bother with memory cards? If you do bother then digital is much more fail safe than film. I find digital easier to travel with as long as I have a couple of memory cards and some charged batteries. My 7d will do ~2000 shots with 2 batteries in the grip (usually on for wildlife). I will also see my digital photos far quicker than my film ones at the rate I get round to developing them!
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Old 12-18-2012   #50
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having said that i regret my trip to Mexico wasn't shot on film.
May I ask why?
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Old 12-18-2012   #51
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I have the family with me, so taking time out for uploading files will be frowned upon. This is the most critical factor for me. I want my wife to enjoy the traveling. I wonder if the responses above may slightly differ with the family factor included.
I sure understand that. My wife never did enjoy waiting for me to take photographs, let alone sitting at a computer uploading files. But I suppose you could have more than one card and leave to go eat or visit other sites while the photos were uploaded. Even to do so on the i'net, except for the exhorbitant prices many hotels charge for i'net access.

Hope you are able to see everything you want, and the light improves for you. It is a little rainny and cloudy in DC right now. At least, though not Florida weather, it isn't too cold. Enjoy and stay safe.
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Old 12-18-2012   #52
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I think you are complicating this. I just go with two cameras and a lot of cards. Keep the cards in a safe place until you return and can deal with them.
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Old 12-18-2012   #53
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I sure understand that. My wife never did enjoy waiting for me to take photographs, let alone sitting at a computer uploading files. But I suppose you could have more than one card and leave to go eat or visit other sites while the photos were uploaded. Even to do so on the i'net, except for the exhorbitant prices many hotels charge for i'net access.

Hope you are able to see everything you want, and the light improves for you. It is a little rainny and cloudy in DC right now. At least, though not Florida weather, it isn't too cold. Enjoy and stay safe.
Thanks.
The weather is turning into sunny at DuPont Circle.
Enjoying the trip is most important.
By the way, yesterday, a metro train ran over a person. I was in a ater train, and we stopped for a while because of it.
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Old 12-18-2012   #54
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How fortunate we are, being able to discuss having both the money and the time to travel. I find both in less abundance these days. So, how does it work these days with TSA? I use to travel with a lead bag and film. I assume that you have them hand inspect the film. Do they make you take the 35mm out of the cannisters and the roll film out of the wrap? That uncertainty has had me taking digital when flying. Also, use to shoot and develop locally when travelling. I assume that rural areas and anything but small towns are pretty much void of any developing labs that can provide same day service.
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Old 12-18-2012   #55
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I have the family with me, so taking time out for uploading files will be frowned upon. This is the most critical factor for me. I want my wife to enjoy the traveling. I wonder if the responses above may slightly differ with the family factor included.
Can't you just not upload files then?
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Old 12-18-2012   #56
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Film cameras are also generally more reliable than digital, and SD cards can be corrupted, mislaid or dropped more easily than a roll of film. One time in Barcelona I used the (upmarket) hotel's PCs to generate DVD backups of my cards, and when I got home and back to my Mac, found that virus files were plentifully present both on the DVD disks and the SD cards. (I know to lock the cards if I ever need to do anything similar in the future).
I'm a film guy, but I can't really agree too much with this. The only camera I've had break down on me is a film camera, I was out on the beach in Oahu with my Sigma DP-1 and Fujifilm Klasse back when I shot both film and digital, and it was the Klasse that quit on me. Had to send it off for repair when I got back, thankfully I had another film camera with me.

SD cards can of course be corrupted, but you can drop an SD in the sea and it'll likely be OK, film won't.

Much as I'd love to say film wins for backup, I really can't say it does, assuming you know how to backup files etc.
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Old 12-18-2012   #57
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Can't you just not upload files then?
Exactly. There is no need whatever to upload files and fuss over your camera unless you want to.

The same 2500, pristine perfect, original capture files are still there on my old 2G cards from my last trip with them in 2008 ... because after that trip I upgraded to 8G cards and didn't bother to erase them. Just checked ... Yup, all still there, still transfer as if I made them yesterday.

The supposed fragility of this stuff and desperate need to backup and replicate is another win by the marketing trolls to make you need to buy more again ...

The latent image on film is nowhere even remotely so secure, even if the film isn't further degraded by multiple X-ray exposure.
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Old 12-18-2012   #58
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I wonder if the responses above may slightly differ with the family factor included.
well, also subject "travel" can be anything from tourist visiting 2 weeks in Europe to backpacker spending a year in India, or something else no wonder replies are so wide spread
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Old 12-18-2012   #59
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Can't you just not upload files then?
Absolutely. This is on my mind too. I will take many cards. As fr a dirty sensor in the M9, I could clean the sensor really well before the trip, and then use one lens only until I am " safe" at the hotel, where I could change to a secod lens.
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Old 12-18-2012   #60
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This was meant for the members, since it goes beyond digital vs. Film. I use both. It is a small dilemma that many member could go through when planning for a trip. How do you balance between several factors.

If it fits better in another forum, then I have no problems with that.
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Old 12-19-2012   #61
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May I ask why?
Well Mexico is full of beautiful colors hues and i wish i caught them on film , i prefer that look film gives me , besides somehow i barely ever come back to photographs i shot on digi cam hence i want all important stuff photographed on film.
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Old 12-19-2012   #62
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I've done both, and I don't really find one to be any more 'complicated' than the other. With film, there's the bulk of carrying many rolls of film, and potential for x-ray or other hazards (though I've never had any troubles). WIth digital, you have to worry about having enough charged batteries and a place in which to charge them, a dirty sensor, and I suppose some kind of electronic failure (though you could also have mechanical failure with a film camera). I know that many will disagree with what I personally do on vacation, but I do not worry about backing up on a laptop/hard drive etc while I'm on vacation (if I were doing it for paying work, it would be a different story). For our last trip to New Mexico and Arizona, I had my M9 and some 8GB SD cards, and a couple of 16GB SD cards, and never felt like I was short on memory. Last year we were in France, and I had enough cards for the M9 to do over 1600 RAW shots (imagine how much film that would be!), and they fit in a small pocket in my camera bag. Three years ago we were in Vienna for Christmas and I took my SWC and my Contaflex TLR -- stupid to bring both of them in the first place, as I then had to contend with carrying both 120 and 35mm film, making sure that I kept the exposed film protected and separate from the unexposed film, etc, so it was a bit to juggle (not to mention the fact that the camera bag weighed about 20 tonnes with those two camera kits). Not really a big deal, as it was something that I've been used to doing all these years, but compared to what I've gotten used to with digital on vacation, it was somewhat more cumbersome. But then again, I just did a short trip with my Canonflex and a few rolls of film, and it was quite satisfying!

Here again, as far as digital goes, I think backing up is a personal choice (for vacation, anyways). I tend not to worry about it (ignorance being bliss, perhaps?), but that's just me. And just like Godfrey, I just checked an SD card that I took to France last year, and yep, the shots are still there.

Other advantage to digital is that you can have much more versatility in your choice of ISO's. You could be shooting in bright sunlight one minute, and then in a darkened church the next. And of course the ease with which one can switch from colour to black and white -- unless you're using a Monochrom!
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Old 12-19-2012   #63
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You do not back up film images, why do you find it necessary for digital. They there is the old x ray problem. Any exposure to it starts to degrade the image. Certainly people say they don`t see it, but it is there.
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Old 12-19-2012   #64
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The only problem I see with digital is battery life. I usually travel with both film and digital. Film takes more place and has to be managed (I'm always afraid to put a used film back in the camera), but at least you don't have to charge the batteries every day or two.

Now that i'm almost 100% digital, i'll just buy a couple of spare batteries and a few more SD cards...

As others said : no need to backup (unless you can do it easily), since you did not backup your film.
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Old 12-19-2012   #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Herjulfr View Post
The only problem I see with digital is battery life. ...
That's very camera and usage dependent. All of my digital cameras tend to get around 350-500 exposures per charge, which means that at my average shooting rate I run 3 to 4 days on a fully charged battery. Three batteries is ideal:

- one in the camera
- one, freshly charged, in the bag
- one either freshly charged and in the bag, or being recharged.

That leaves you with always having at least one battery in the camera and a fresh spare in your bag. If you run extended time away from power sources, just add another couple of batteries: they're small and easy to carry.
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Old 12-19-2012   #66
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Shouldn't the choice what to take along on travel be based more on the type of photography that one expects and the ergonomy of the camera than on the film/digital distinction? For all practical purposes, there's no real convenience difference between the two if you don't want there to be. It only becomes an issue if you also want to do postprocessing on the go..
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Old 12-20-2012   #67
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Once you are in Tuscany you will know that your SWC is the perfect camera for the setting.

If you should go without it, you will forever regret the lost opportunity of making truly beautiful images on film.
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Old 12-20-2012   #68
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When I was in Iceland this summer I had a Hexar RF and a Ricoh GXR with me.
The first few days in Reykjavik where ok, but when we went to the countryside, the fine dust entered the GXR and with the tools I had with me I was unable to clean her sufficiently. I rescued a lot of images in Photoshop, but I was glad I had a film camera with me. The Hexar worked flawlessly
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Old 12-20-2012   #69
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Film is many things, but simple for travel ain't one of 'em in my book. If you shoot sparely (and maybe the space film takes results in this), you have to make decisions about the window of time for shooting a roll. And you most likely want two bodies (B&W, Color), so there is that. The Hexar RF is king if you have to have only one body and have a film limit.

No, not convenient, but I still prefer it.
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Old 12-20-2012   #70
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I suppose it depends on the circumstances. Next year we'll be going to Australia for the birth of the next grandchild; I'll take the LX3 for instantly available family snapshots, and the camera in Missus's little Nokia phone is a very decent back-up. In case I get an opportunity for a little 6x9 happiness with something scenic, I'll take a folder, probably the Agfa Record III which is a very decent, pocketable shooter that's not irreplaceably rare or valuable .
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Old 12-20-2012   #71
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This discussion is making the choice of equipment easier for me as it pertains to using both film and digital. I am tending towards what Vince said above. I am not a pro, and my photography is driven 100% by having fun with it and by enjoying also a family trip. I will ask my two girls to bring along their small digital cameras, so if everything that I am carrying fails, I still have their cameras.

I will most likely leave behind the laptop for its size and weight, but will take along an IPad for internet use to find places and roads as we travel. I have enough memory cards, I think, but I can always order a few more for the summer trip.

I really want to use the SWC for carefully composed images of places with people, plus close-ups of people gatherings. The M9 would be perfect for everyday scenes. I would only need MF film to carry. I have many batteries for the M9, so this is not an issue.

I got yesterday in the mail two "survival kits" with swabs and cleaner, following the advice to me by some RFF members. I will maybe just use the RocketBlower each day in the hotel to clean the sensor.

RF lenses are so tiny, as long as you do not follow the need for 1.2 lenses. This will allow me to use maybe a 35mm or a 50mm lens as the main lens, plus a 25 or 28 and maybe a (tiny) 90/4 for portraits or maybe I will use a 50mm lens for such applications and then I do not to take along a 90mm lens.
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Old 12-20-2012   #72
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Frankly, I can't concentrate if I mix film and digital: one medium always suffers to the detriment of the other on an outing.

I took all MF film and my Rollei 6008i2 system to Europe 2 years ago. The pictures were fantastic, but to develop 50 rolls after returning home? It took me almost two months to get through all of that. Also, the bulk and weight of the system was almost too much for me.

I find with film that I concentrate more and I tend to take better pictures with it. The downside to that is that I am too absorbed in the picture-taking process to actually enjoy and appreciate what I am seeing!

I must be getting old, but a digital camera on a trip is far easier to negotiate for me than film. As to backups: I carry a laptop anyway so I just stick the card in the laptop, wait 5 seconds, and done. Most of the hotels I stay at have internet access so my files get uploaded to my 'Crashplan' account automatically in the cloud. No worries, really.
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Old 12-20-2012   #73
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A digital camera takes up more of your attention than a film camera. I was responding to the thread before I read your view, Snowbuzz.
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Old 12-20-2012   #74
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A digital camera takes up more of your attention than a film camera. ...
Only if you let it. In the end, they're just cameras, machines like any other.
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Old 12-20-2012   #75
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Only if you let it. In the end, they're just cameras, machines like any other.
There are only three controls, each with one way, and the other way. Unless I forgot something. You can take a bath in the DR.
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Old 12-20-2012   #76
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There are only three controls, each with one way, and the other way. Unless I forgot something.
Don't know what you're trying to say. Only three controls? On what camera? Even on my plain prism Nikon F I have:

Back release
Take up spool
Film advance lever
Lens mount catch/release
Shutter time selector
Flash synchronization selector
Self timer
Self timer release
Focusing ring
Aperture selector
Depth of field scale
Focus indicator
Focus scale
Prism release catch
Focusing screen
Film rewind clutch release
Film length reminder
Rewind knob
Folding rewind crank
Depth of field preview button
Mirror lock up latch control

To use the full capabilities of a Nikon F, you have to understand and use about 3/4 of those controls virtually every time you pick it up to make some photographs. And that is a relatively simple film camera ..there's only a couple of things there that are not also on my Rolei 35S. Or Leica M.

Film cameras seem simpler because every photographer who worked with film seriously learned all these controls and operated most of them without thinking about them much. The controls on digital cameras are similar in most ways, different in others. There's the added complexity of a complete image processing lab in every digital camera ... But for the most part you can ignore it, much the same way you normally ignore the flash sync setting and mirror lock up control on the old F once they're set for use.

On a digital camera you have to remember to turn it on, and maintain the battery every few hundred frames, and change the storage card when it's full.

On the old F, you have to rewind and reload film every 36 frames, set exposure when needed, wind on to the next frame as needed, etc.

Each camera takes up as much of your consciousness and attention to use as you allow it to. :-)
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Old 12-20-2012   #77
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You don't know what I'm trying to say? Aperture priority cameras have only two, program jobs have one. I guess I did forget the shutter button. This is not worth debating, film cameras don't have menu trees with exposure compensation, ISO, and all the etc associated bull****. I understand you have an opinion, but it's self evident film requires less attention to the device. Ok.
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Old 12-20-2012   #78
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I guess you haven't done much shooting with a 1950s classic folder? Or a late model Nikon F100, for that matter...

They've got almost as many things to do for each exposure as the most complex digital camera. IMO.
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Old 12-21-2012   #79
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For a big trip I'd say mix digital and film. Take the cameras you feel will get you the pics you would like.
The debate regarding digital being more complex re choices, menus, iso, exposure comp bla bla bla is a non starter. Most people who shoot a lot have their cameras set up the way they like anyway and also know how to change things quickly if needed. My Lx3 pocket digi gives me the biggest headache but only because I don't use it all the time. D700 on the other hand is simple with no menu searching. One button, one dial turn and I can change everything I might need. Battery life 3 days as someone else suggested. F5 a bit more hungry on batteries but easily capable of shooting more rolls than I need on a full charge.
It does help if you use the same system re digi/film.
In the past I've taken only film and also only digital and always seem to have the same amount of kit!
My last trips have been both. F5 for film and D700 for digital with an 85 and a 24-70. The 700 gets used more. I take the LX3 for nights out in clubs and bars etc.
I back up when I get home. Film can spoil, so can cards but it's rare. I read an article by a great wedding guy who shoots thousands weekly and in all the time he's shot digital has only lost a handfull of shots due card problems. Use good cards that have been tested well before you do anything important and if in the unlikely event a card fails use recovery software to retrieve your pics. A more likely scenario would be losing cards but that's the same with film. I usually take 30 rolls of film on a big trip. I don't necessarily use it all but even so, 3 blocks is still bigger than my charger set up for both Nikons.
Take fewest lenses possible. Some seem to take their lens collections with them and like clothes in a suitcase, some will go unused. I now limit to no extra lenses, body number equals lens number.
Lastly, take kit that you can forget about when it's wet, dusty, cold etc as you don't want to spoil your trips worrying about your gear.
I'm planning my next trip at the mo. Malaysia, NZ, Oz and back via Nepal and India. The F5 and D700 will be going with me plus the LX3 for the nights I want to go out
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Old 12-21-2012   #80
Snowbuzz
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Originally Posted by Ranchu View Post
You don't know what I'm trying to say? Aperture priority cameras have only two, program jobs have one. I guess I did forget the shutter button. This is not worth debating, film cameras don't have menu trees with exposure compensation, ISO, and all the etc associated bull****. I understand you have an opinion, but it's self evident film requires less attention to the device. Ok.
It's okay, we get you. I use Canon DSLRs with manual focus lenses and all automated functions turned off so I'm not distracted. I tried the Fujis but the automation drives me to distraction. Also, with negative film I don't worry about metering too much at all. I worry more about that with digital.

I understand where you're coming from and I understand Godfrey's points as well. A good digital camera will allow you to simplify the process if it's your preference.
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