September 09, 2009

“Like asking headphones to clean your ears”

Loving a good rant, I thought I’d pass along this bit from my fellow PM/photographer Bryan O’Neil Hughes. Hughes uses a Canon 5D Mk II and loves good camera tech as much as just about anybody. He does not, however, have much patience for gear-for-gear’s-sake, or for money as a replacement for sweat.


You don’t need an accelerometer to hold your camera level…and if you do, you should find a new hobby. That’s like asking headphones to clean your ears.

The problem isn’t software. It isn’t hardware. It’s the shoot-a-million-images-and-hope-to-hell-it-works-out philosophy that people are taking.

Here’s a snippet (repeated a million times when I used to sell high-end photo gear):

  • Customer: I want to buy a Hasselblad.
  • Me: Sure, we have those… Let me ask you, though: what don’t you like about your current camera?
  • Customer: It isn’t sharp enough.
  • Me: What sort of things do you shoot?
  • Customer: Landscape.
  • Me: Do you shoot from a tripod?
  • Customer: No.
  • Me: Do you own a tripod?
  • Customer: No.
  • Me: Let’s start there.

…And invariably they’d buy the Hassy. People always want to solve their own laziness with gear (often the wrong gear). I see it with photography, cars… man, I even saw it with skateboarding.

My Mk II has a grid overlay… my F3 had that… but honestly, if you need to lean on that to hold the camera straight… you should probably have your inner ear checked.

– BH

[In a related vein: "If You Think You Need This, Kill Yourself"]

Posted by John Nack at 7:31 PM on September 09, 2009
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