Jonathan Fleming's Blog

A Photography Blog

Posts Tagged ‘nikon v1

Adapting Lenses to the Nikon V1

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Nikon V1 + FT1 + Nikkor 24mm f/1.4G | 1/250 sec, f/1.4, ISO 100

Funny thing about Suki…even though she’s my dog, every time I see her I feel like it’s the first time I ever laid eyes on a Shiba Inu. She’s so cute it’s ridiculous! Melts my heart when I see her sleeping like this, buried among the funny mix of blankets we always lay out for her.

She, of course, was the first test subject for the FT-1 adapter I recently acquired for my Nikon V1. The adapter lets me mount any of my Nikon G lenses to the camera, with full communication between the body and adapted lens for VR, auto exposure, and auto focus support (limited to single point AF, continuous not supported).

There’s a 2.7x crop factor on the V1, which means my wide angle 24mm f/1.4 has an angle of view similar to around 65mm on an FX camera. Not very practical for me, especially considering how large that lens is compared to the camera body. I found that I really liked the 50mm f/1.4 on the V1, however. It gives me something more like a 135mm lens and balances really nicely with the body:


Nikon V1 + FT1 + Nikkor 50mm f/1.4G | 1/500 sec, f/1.4, ISO 100


Nikon V1 + FT1 + Nikkor 50mm f/1.4G | 1/40 sec, f/1.4, ISO 100 | SB-N5 Flash

Shooting at f/1.4 on a 50mm lens and still getting most of Suki’s face in focus? That’s kinda cool.


Nikon V1 + FT1 + Nikkor 50mm f/1.4G | 1/125 sec, f/1.4, ISO 400

Though there are more on the horizon, there’s currently only one prime lens for the 1 system, and it’s not all that fast. Adapting fast Nikkor glass to the camera is great for shooting in lower light and for getting shots with shallower depth of field, but I still want some wider options.

On the other hand, telephoto options abound. Racking out with my 70-300 VR lens mounted gives me something like 810mm on FX, letting do you stuff like this:


iPhone 4s | 1/120 sec, f/2.4, ISO 100

See those tiny houses in the distance? Snapped the above with my iPhone before pulling out the V1 + 70-300 and zooming in on them:


Nikon V1 + FT1 + Nikkor 70-300mm VR at 300mm | 1/320 sec, f/5.6, ISO 1600

Whoa!


iPhone 4s | 1/120 sec, f/2.4, ISO 100

Another example. I’m way up on a hill south of downtown San Francisco, and in the distance I spot the evening’s last glimmer of light from the setting sun, reflecting beautifully off of the 555 California building. Above is shot with the iPhone, and then below, the V1 and 70-300:


Nikon V1 + FT1 + Nikkor 70-300mm VR at 300mm | 1/320 sec, f/5.6, ISO 400

From such a great distance, it seems that atmospheric haze is fuzzing up the image a little, but wow, talk about getting in close with a very compact system. Once I’m done with my kitchen I’m definitely going to experiment more with this combo.


Nikon V1 + FT1 + Nikkor 70-300mm VR at 300mm | 1/320 sec, f/5.6, ISO 400

This shot of the  moon was taken hand-held, and it wasn’t even that large in the sky at the time. Can’t wait to catch a full moon or eclipse one of these days!  I’ve seen images floating around the web with much crazier combinations than this, like someone mounting a 600mm f/4 or even a 2000mm reflex lens on the V1. Insanity! Love it.

Written by Jonathan

February 10, 2012 at 4:01 pm

Champi the Akita

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If Suki was as big as she thinks she is, she’d probably look just like Champi, the most adorable Akita ever! We finally had a chance to meet this giant puppy over the weekend.

The best way I can think to describe Champi is, well….she’s like a massive Shiba.  She looks like what would happen if Suki ate one of those Super Mario mushrooms. Can you hear the sound effect in your head?

Look at that face! So cute it’s ridiculous. Whenever Champi would get close enough, I’d try to give her a great big Akita hug. But just like Suki, this pup is well versed in the art of evading human affection.

Evasive maneuvers!

A couple of Japan’s national treasures right here, apparently discussing which smaller dog to chase together:

The larger, Clifford-sized Champi would periodically take breaks from all the action, unlike the smaller Suki, who prefers to stay on her feet.

Despite the sun being out, it was freezing at the dog park, and high winds blew dirt all over my camera as well as Suki’s eyes. Not good for allergies (or for lens changing).

Trying to get both dogs in the frame is harder than you might think. More often than not, Suki and Champi would be moving in opposite directions. Most of my shots from the meetup look like this:

We humans had to duck, spin, dive, and spray bursts of frames to catch these two together!

Make sure your you check out the very epic 52 Weeks of Champi project! Of course, Suki has one as well ;)

All Images: Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor 10-30mm & 30-110mm VR lenses

Written by Jonathan

January 16, 2012 at 4:20 pm

More Nikon V1 Impressions

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Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor 10mm f/2.8 | 1/320 sec, f/2.8, ISO 100

Sunday was such a beautiful day in the city. The weather was perfect, and as is typical in the winter time on days like this, the light seems to have a crisp, dramatic look all day long. A walk in the park was a must.

I keep forgetting how large Golden Gate Park is. We started at the south-east corner and trekked our way to Spreckels lake, which is a little less than 3/4 of the way to the west entrance that intersects Ocean Beach. The entire journey took us between three and four hours, covering around five miles. We loved every minute of it, and Suki,  who unlike her human companions could have easily walked the length of this park a dozen times over,  was especially happy.


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor VR 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6 at 10mm | 1/160 sec, f/8, ISO 100

Spread out among the large, open recreational spaces are dense areas of trees and local plant life. Small gardens, large groves, tons of areas to explore. Places where light takes on even more drama, where your image data gets slammed into either end of the histogram. Places where you wrangle your camera’s EV dial and white balance settings. I love these places.


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor VR 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6 at 30mm | 1/125 sec, f/5.6, ISO 180


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor VR 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor VR 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6 at 10mm | 1/200 sec, f/4.5, ISO 100


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor VR 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6 at 18mm | 1/60 sec, f/4.5, ISO 400


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor VR 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6 at 30mm | 1/60 sec, f/5.6, ISO 200


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor VR 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6 at 24mm | 1/80 sec, f/5, ISO 200


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor VR 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6 at 30mm | 1/60 sec, f/5.6, ISO 360


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor VR 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6 at 10mm | 1/200 sec, f/4.5, ISO 100


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor VR 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6 at 11mm | 1/250 sec, f/4.5, ISO 100

I love working with the RAW files from the V1 because the experience is so familiar to me as a Nikon shooter. Every manufacturer has its own look, its own way of handling colors, and the V1’s files are decidedly Nikon. Therefore, much of my work flow in handling the V1’s output is nearly identical to how I process my D700 files. Awesome!

The ability to easily carry an entire system on a trek this long is one of my favorite things about the V1. I had a camera body, flash unit, and three lenses covering a 27-297mm equivalent range in my bag with room to spare, and I could barely feel the weight on my shoulder the entire time. I couldn’t possibly carry that range with my DSLR system without destroying my back. When I do head out with the D700, I usually select only one lens to bring along in order to keep weight and bulk to a minimum. No compromise in that regard with the V1. Take it all!


Nikon V1 +  1 Nikkor VR 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor VR 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6 at 10mm |  1/125 sec, f/3.5, ISO 100

Running into other Shibas is always a treat, more so for us than for Suki, who was only mildly interested in this five month old puppy.


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor VR 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6 at 30mm | 1/160 sec, f/5.6, ISO 100

As the sun continued to fall, beams of light became more and more visible in areas with densely packed trees. Right after I took the shot above I thought, “there’s something missing in this frame….”


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor VR 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6 at 30mm | 1/250 sec, f/5.6, ISO 100

Ah yes, a Shiba Inu. =)


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor 10mm f/2.8 | 1/640 sec, f/2.8, ISO 100

With the lenses currently available for the 1 system,  you won’t be throwing backgrounds way out of focus, though getting in close with the 10mm pancake can deliver some pleasing results.  Nikon is said to be releasing some fast primes for the format soon. I want them yesterday!


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor  10mm f/2.8 | 1/800 sec, f/4, ISO 100


Nikon V1 + 1 NIKKOR VR 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6 at 110mm | 1/250 sec, f/5.6, ISO 140

Lens changing is pleasantly fast with the 1. Large, easy to see lens markings line up at a 12 o’clock position at the mount, and the rotation required to lock the lens into place is much shorter than I expected. Going from a wide shot of the lake with the 10mm and quickly changing to the 30-110mm for a close up of the duck felt just like switching things up with my F-mount system, only on a much smaller scale.


Nikon V1 + 1 NIKKOR VR 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6 at 110mm | 1/400 sec, f/2.8, ISO 100

Small cameras have come a long way. Using the V1 system lately has made me realize that for a lot of what I shoot, a DSLR can often be too much camera than I actually need or am willing to carry. These smaller systems will only get better and better, and I personally am much more excited about the future of cameras like the V1 than I am about what’s next in the DSLR realm.

Written by Jonathan

December 30, 2011 at 1:11 pm

Growing Up Too Fast

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Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor 10mm f/2.8 + SB-N5 | 1/20 sec, f/2.8, ISO 200

My great nephew Julian is now a touch over one month old, and wow, kids grow fast! Last night, he met up with the entire family for the first time. Of course, uncle Jonathan has a camera in tow.

The dimly lit house we gathered at was a great place to test out the new flash unit I just received for my Nikon V1. The lack of a built-in flash in the V1 seemed like a curious omission from the camera at first. Nikon instead opted for  a separate unit, the SB-N5 Speedlight, which attaches to the camera using a proprietary connector.

Proprietary connector?! My first reaction was “why not a regular old hotshoe I can mount my SB-900 to?” Then again, an SB-900 is nearly double the size of the camera body itself. Not a combo I’m likely to use anyway. This smaller SB-N5 unit feels way more practical in use, and what makes it rock compared to a typical built-in flash is that it can tilt and swivel, much like its bigger SB brethren.

I set exposure manually at the camera. Wasn’t too worried about the low shutter speeds since the flash would help me freeze movement. From there I just rotated the flash head where I wanted it in order to wash light off part of the white ceiling above me, relying on the camera to vary flash output automatically. The whole experience felt just like using the iTTL flash system with my Nikon DSLR. It worked, and worked well.


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor 10mm f/2.8 + SB-N5 | 1/40 sec, f/2.8, ISO 200


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor 10mm f/2.8 + SB-N5 | 1/25 sec, f/2.8, ISO 200


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor 10mm f/2.8 + SB-N5 | 1/40 sec, f/2.8, ISO 400


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor 10mm f/2.8 + SB-N5 | 1/20 sec, f/2.8, ISO 200


Nikon V1 + 1 Nikkor 10mm f/2.8 + SB-N5 | 1/80 sec, f/2.8, ISO 400

Of course, the SB-95 is nowhere near as powerful or versatile as Nikon’s real hotshoe flashes, but for indoor shots with bounce and for outdoor fill, it’s a must for a V1 owner.

Written by Jonathan

December 23, 2011 at 9:35 pm