Bob Fairbairn

Traveling (light) with cameras

In 2015 my family took a vacation in the UK and I wanted to travel light! I always take too much gear with me when I am traveling. I decided that for this trip I would pack everything in a Think Tank Mirrorless mover 30i. I packed my iPhone 6s Plus and a Panasonic LUMIX LX100 camera. I used an iPad Air 2 to store the RAW files from the LX100 into Apple Photos for backup and for use in sharing with family, etc.

After looking back at the images and thinking about the trip I have several observations from the trip and using the cameras. Going in I would called the LX100 the primary camera for the trip but over and over the iPhone won the day. As a side I typically use the Apple camera application for my images. It is fast, simple and works very well.

The LX100 is the “perfect” larger sensor travel camera and the 24-70 zoom helps frame up the shots you need. The wide F1.7 aperture of the lens really helps with photographic control. I mostly shoot in 4:3 but I use both 1:1 and 16:9 for effect. The turn on time for the LX100 is rather slow because it has to extend the lens. I have the automatic lens cap which keeps some of the dust out and eliminates the loss issue while protecting things.

The mechanics of the iPhone are pretty good to get “the shot”. The swipe up for camera from the lock screen is fast. (Note: IOS 10 makes it even faster with raise to wake and one swipe for the camera). There is not as much photographic control with the iPhone and the sensor is very small. The software running the iPhone camera really does do a great job of getting the picture “right”.

In the end I am very happy I had the LX100 with me. It is a brilliant camera that travels well and just works for many situations. Being critical it is either not wide enough for the city stuff and it is not long enough for the nature stuff.

Doing the trip again I would reconsider the camera selection and just possibly iPhone might be enough.

This post was originally published on my previous photography blog.