2nd bodies

Discussion in 'Digital SLR' started by Gordon, Oct 1, 2005.

  1. Gordon

    Gordon Guest

    In the old days (like the sixties) wearing two or three bodies was
    common at events (with maybe a fourth lens in a pocket). Any idea why
    even two bodies has lost favor in the digital age?
    Gordon, Oct 1, 2005
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  2. Gordon

    dylan Guest

    You don't need different bodies with different films for different ISOs ?
    dylan, Oct 1, 2005
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  3. In the 'old days' we needed different bodies for three reasons, one camera
    for colour, one camera for monocrome and an extra camera with 'extreme'
    (very fast or very long) lens and fast film.

    Nowdays colour and monochrome imaging can be had from any digital camera
    either by accessing settings within the camera or post photography in an
    image manipulation program.

    Also there is no need to have different camera bodies for different film
    speeds/ISO values, with Digital cameras you can adjust their light
    sensitivity to suit the lighting conditions you are working in.

    Thirdly zoom lenses are available today which will travel all the way from
    wide to telephoto and still deliver good results under a very wide range of
    lighting situations. So no need to have a wide angle on one body and a
    telephoto on another.
    Nigel Cummings, Oct 1, 2005
  4. Gordon

    Alan Browne Guest

    Zoom lenses have reduced the "body count" a little. For most pj's
    (except sports) a 17-35, a 28-80 and a 70-200 (in f/2.8) are really all
    he needs for 99.9% of his work. That was film cameras. 3 bodies would
    do for all of his day to day work and usually 1 of the 3 would stay in
    the car.

    With digital, he can do it all with a wide zoom and middle zoom on two

    Further, cropped digital is fine for most news shots, so a crop from a
    cropped sensor camera gets him a lot of "effective" FL without dragging
    the lens and body around ... two bodies does it.

    I carry two bodies, 1 film, 1 digital. And the Hasselblad in season.

    Alan Browne, Oct 1, 2005
  5. Gordon

    Alan Browne Guest

    And of course, as Nigel points out, film variety
    (color/B&W/negative/slide/ISO's) is another reason for more bodies.
    Alan Browne, Oct 1, 2005
  6. Gordon

    Canongirly Guest

    Some of us still carry two or three bodies around...it's called back-up.
    Canongirly, Oct 1, 2005
  7. Gordon

    Eugene Guest

    I would think cost would also be a factor as well. Pro digital bodies
    are still far more expensive than the equivalent film body.
    Eugene, Oct 2, 2005
  8. Gordon

    M Guest

    Exactly why I have kept my semi-pro film body (EOS 30). I figure I will use
    film occasioanlly to make it worthwhile keeping it (not worth much second
    hand now anyway). I can use it in situations where I might not risk the
    digital (ie on a boat) or where dust may be a problem, or for super wide
    angle photography or simply so as not to put all my digital eggs in one
    basket (file corruption accidental deletion etc.)
    M, Oct 2, 2005

  9. Also you used to be able to only take 36 shots before reloading film, it was
    much quicker to swing another camera around so you didn't miss anything.

    With my D70 and a 4Gb card I can now take 1200 images without changing a
    Steve Franklin, Oct 2, 2005
  10. Yes. Better quality, more compact zooms of lessor cost. In the 60s and
    70s, most zooms were big, heavy, and slow with low contrast and
    resolution. Fixed focal length lenses were vastly superior even the cheap
    ones. Also, almost all zooms at that time were in the telephoto range.
    Wide angle to tele zooms didn't exist. Plus, the good ones, what good ones
    there were, were expensive. It was almost more economical to buy 2 or 3
    fixed focal length lenses instead of buying the zoom that covered the same
    range. But with the advent of computer lens designing and manufacturing,
    and new optical materials these drawbacks were, for the most part,
    overcome. So, today, quality zooms are almost the equal of fixed focal
    length lenses, and are small and fast, both in operation and f-stop.

    So, today, whether you have a DSLR or an SLR, you only need one lens
    of a reasonably fast f-stop, much faster than zooms of the past, that
    covers a focal length range that might require 3 or 4 fixed focal length
    lenses to adequately cover. And, if what you're shooting requires working
    quickly like photojournalism or sports photography, only one body is
    needed while several would be required with fixed focal length lenses.

    There is a second reason for the lack of prevalence of multiple DSLR
    bodies as opposed to film bodies: cost. DSLR bodies are considerably more
    costly than an "equivalent" film SLR body. For example, B&H lists the
    Canon Elan 7N 35mm body at around $300. A 20D is $1300. Over 4 times
    more. The 5D is $3300. 11 times more! And for the average amateur, that
    cost factor makes owning a second digital body prohibitive or down right
    stupid, if you don't really you need another body.

    A third reason is that with digital cameras, you have both color and b&w
    imaging capability at a range of ISOs all built-in. Something that with
    film requires using multiple bodies.

    Stefan Patric, Oct 3, 2005
  11. Gordon

    no_name Guest

    But now the backup stays in the case unless/until needed.

    I think he's refering to the iconic image of the 60s photographer with
    half a dozen cameras draped around his neck.

    no_name, Oct 3, 2005
  12. Gordon

    Matt Clara Guest

    I shoot weddings with either a D70 or an F100, and I frequently carry an
    F3HP with a 105 f2.5 and black and white film as well.
    Matt Clara, Oct 3, 2005
  13. Gordon

    westin Guest

    Well, I can think of three reasons to wear multiple bodies:

    1) You want to switch rapidly between different films (color vs. B/W,
    transparency vs. neg, different ISO's).

    2) You want to shoot more than 36 exposures between reloading.

    3) You want to switch lenses rapidly.

    The fact that it's digital pretty much eliminates the first two, and
    modern zooms have reduced the third.

    Oh, and there is also

    4) One camera might break.

    But then, having a durable professional body should make this so
    infrequent as to be negligble. Keeping a spare body in the camera bag
    should be enough.
    westin, Oct 3, 2005
  14. Gordon

    Sheldon Guest

    When I worked for AP I used to carry a wide angle on one body and an 80~200
    zoom on another body. I still see pros with two camera bodies, but to me
    the main reason for only needing one camera body is zoom lenses are much
    better than they used to be, and you also don't have to spend a few minutes
    setting up a different lens to work with your metering system. I never
    carried different bodies for different "ASA" speeds or one for black and
    white and one for color, so while I understand what many of you are saying,
    I can't relate based on my experience.

    And I still believe it depends on what kind of photography you do. Some
    photogs may need two or three bodies to do their job. Others may not.
    Sheldon, Oct 4, 2005
  15. Gordon

    Roger Guest

    Me? I still carry two. The second is mainly for backup, rather than
    film, or film speed as in the old days. OTOH if I'm going to be
    shooting a lot of photos I can switch cameras faster than I can change
    memory cards.

    Roger Halstead (K8RI & ARRL life member)
    (N833R, S# CD-2 Worlds oldest Debonair)
    Roger, Oct 7, 2005
  16. Duh. Do you think multi-thousand dollar bodies might have something
    to do with it?

    Also, the availability of fast zoom lenses -- those three bodies used
    to have three different single-focal-length lenses on them mostly.
    David Dyer-Bennet, Oct 9, 2005
  17. Gordon

    DoN. Nichols Guest

    Hmm ... have you checked the inflation factor to see what the
    relative cost of a Nikon F would be today? I suspect that they would
    work out rather similar.
    Agreed -- and for those with thread-mount lenses (e.g. the early
    Pentax cameras), the speed of changing lenses was not what it could be.

    But in another thread in this newsgroup was a recent mention by
    someone of a reluctance to change lenses to get the shot which he
    otherwise would use a different lens for (because of the dust on the
    sensor factor -- plus the inconvenience of changing lenses). This
    strikes me as an argument for multiple bodies today -- if you are not
    able to easily change lenses in such a way as to minimize the chances of
    dust. I can do it rather quickly, with minimal exposure of the camera
    body to dust -- but the chance of dust being transferred in on the back
    of the lens remains.

    DoN. Nichols, Oct 9, 2005
  18. Hmmm. I've been wanting to have some old copies of Popular
    Photography from various eras in the files (or better yet online
    scans) largely to be able to look at the ads in the back, and check
    that sort of thing.

    What I remember is that my Miranda Sensorex cost $280 new in 1969
    (with 50mm f1.4, and from a local dealer). I believe the Nikormat was
    in very much the same price range. I don't remember how much higher
    the F was; I'm pretty sure it was enough that I didn't consider it

    <http://www.westegg.com/inflation/> says $1486.79 in today's money, so
    it's not up in the pro-level digital bodies (Canon 1dmkII, say, or
    Nikon D2x). But if the F was a LOT higher, it might get close after
    inflation adjustment.
    True, though I don't recall Pentax being heavily used by news
    professionals, the ones I thought of as having multiple cameras hung
    about themselves.
    I personally think some people are being paranoid rather than sensible
    about dust, but we each have to choose our own procedures.

    I've still got essentially all my old film, and I scan bits of it
    still, and I have to say that the worst dust I've ever seen in my DSLR
    (and I change lenses quite casually on my DSLR, just like it was a
    film SLR) is less than the waterborn stuff embedded in the emulsion of
    all my old films. Now, my old darkrooms didn't have water filters,
    but neither did anybody else I knew (and in fact several of the
    darkrooms I used were "professional"). I spend more time cleaning up
    that gunk than I ever do on the worst cases of dust.
    David Dyer-Bennet, Oct 10, 2005
  19. Gordon

    no_name Guest

    Yes and no. If you figure it in "constant dollars", the top end bodies
    today aren't really more expensive than the top end back in the 60s.
    That probably has more to do with it.

    Also as someone else pointed out, with a DSLR, you can change the ISO
    right in the middle of shooting. You no longer need different bodies for
    different film speeds.
    no_name, Oct 10, 2005
  20. Gordon

    no_name Guest

    DoN. Nichols wrote:

    Changed lenses as I needed to in Iraq, and didn't much worry about dust.
    Took care to hold the opening in the front of the camera body downward
    while I did so, figuring dust doesn't fall up as easily as it falls down.

    Doesn't seem to have had all that much of a negative effect.
    no_name, Oct 10, 2005
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