I am primarily a landscape and travel photographer. My goal is to capture natural landscapes, and the beauty in this world as beautifully and as accurately as I can. I've been a Fuji X photographer since February 2013 with my first X camera - the Fuji X-E1 and a couple of Fuji lenses in addition to my older Minolta lenses via adapters
In my prior post here I gave a preliminary overview of the TT CW 30 after only a week of use as an office messenger bag, and a light-duty camera bag. I’ve now had the pleasure, and I mean pleasure of using it on two separate outings besides as a daily carry. The first was four day stock/travel image trip up north, and the second was to photograph an event. I’m going to present images here, with descriptions, as I unpack my bag after the event; in all honesty it’s a mess as I swapped lenses – between by 16mm, 23, 35, 60mm and the 55-200. I did not use the 18-55 nor the 12mm Zeiss even though they were in the bag as well. In other words ALL the lenses I own were in the bag. For this event I used the very well padded insert that came standard with the CW30, and I threw in the rain cover as we were under the threat of rain most of the day.
In the following images I try to show the contents of the bag and how much you can carry. I will say I could still have put MORE into the bag as I had one inside end pocket, and both outside mesh pockets available! This is an insane amount of stuff! During the event I had the bag slung across my should messenger style, I had the main cover open and flat against my hip thereby allowing me access to all my gear inside. What I truly enjoyed was being able to swap lenses on the fly and using the outside mesh pockets to hold a lens (very easily) and the lens caps and other miscellaneous stuff.
So here goes: And, if anyone has any questions, please let me know.
I hope you guys found this review helpful. If you take away ONE thing from reading this it’s that the TTCW30 is truly a beautifully crafted bag with room for just about all your gear if you are a mirrorless shooter. dSLR shooters will also be very happy with the capacity, and especially the depth of this bag. There are other pockets I didn’t even mention here – but I do believe I mentioned them in part one of the review.
Let me know what you all think. I did discover recently this bag has been discontinued so if you want one you better hurry. I got mine from B&H for 79.00 with free shipping which is an amazing deal! Much less expensive than Amazon (at the time i purchased mine a couple of weeks ago).
This is part One of a very quick, down and dirty review of the ThinkTank Citywalker 30. I am at my office as I write this and preparing to leave later this afternoon for a four-day work/personal trip up north. I received the Citywalker 30 a few days ago and I have been using it for about a week now as my daily commuter messenger bag. These are just my initial impressions, and how I have it packed and ready to go on this trip.
The first thing I did upon opening the box is I took the huge insert out. I mean, it’s huge. If I were still shooting FX dSLR such as my D800e and my bevy of Nikon lenses it would be just about right to fit it all in, but man it would weigh a ton.
The bag is a ballistic nylon; very well made. I got the black with the blue piping/stripe which looks really sharp and I’ve received several compliments about it at the office. The interior is just huge– I’ll talk about that a bit more in the images which follow as to what’s in the slots but the second thing I did upon opening the box was to place my old Jill-E insert in. The bag dwarfs the insert but it works and doesn’t take up too much room. This short four day trip will give the bag a true workout. It’s the only one I’m taking with me! A normal trip for me involves taking all my gear in a backpack, then one or two smaller bags to swap gear as needed. Unfortunately I don’t always get to swap gear from the backpack into another smaller bag, especially if I’m running late getting to a location — Case in point, back at the end of March I was photographing some old pier and pilings on the North Carolina Coast and put my backpack down in the sand. An rogue wave grabbed the backpack and was dragging it back into the ocean! Thank goodness I had it closed tight; and, if it hadn’t been for my daughter that was shooting with me who snagged it with the tripod leg of her rig, the next wave that was coming in would have swamped the bag completely! Had I had my messenger bag over my shoulder as I normally do, this would not have happened. But luckily, catastrophe avoided!
Anyway for this short, four-day trip I decided to only pack a few folders I need for work with my Macbook Air, and as far as camera equipment goes I loaded the X-T2 with the 16mm, 23mm, 35mm and 60mm lenses, leaving behind my zooms. This is a first for me.. I love love love my 18-55 and my 55-200! I just hope I don’t miss them too much!
I also packed only one of my four battery chargers to go with the three batteries – instead of my usual eight. A polarizer, a ND filter, tripod and remote shutter release rounds out my rig.
Here are a few images of the bag, and what’s in the pockets. As I mentioned earlier, I pulled out the huge insert that came with the bag and am opting for the smaller Jill-E insert to see how this performs in the field and on the road. One thing about the original insert that I can say is that it keeps the bag much more rigid overall, but I wanted a more flatter, close to the body profile. In all honesty I think I made a (intentional) mistake in getting the Citywalker 30 as it has a compartment which will fit up to a 15″ laptop – instead of the CityWalker 10, or the 20 that only hold a small iPad or such. But, for the price of 79.00 brand new, and free shipping from B&H I couldn’t pass up the deal when this same bag sold from anywhere between 145.oo to 200.00 US just a few short months ago.
Overall, as a work bag to and from the office on a daily basis I think it’s absolutely fantastic! I can’t be happier. This weekend will be test of the CityWalker 30 as a camera bag first and foremost.
Not shown in these images is the rain pouch which comes standard, nor the ThinkTank strap where I can put my keys, or my ThinkTank Pocket Rocket memory card holder, etc.
Overall: An excellent value and a kick-butt utilitarian bag that will serve my purposes for many years to come. Roomy, safe, secure, large. Heck, if you are going away for a weekend you can probably pack some overnight clothing, a jacket and snacks in there and still have room for your gear!
This trip will be it’s first official outing as a dedicated camera bag instead of a to-from the office messenger bag. I’m very much looking forward to working with it and I’ll prepare an update when I return.
The tack sharp and reasonably fast Fujifilm 60mm 2.4 Macro. Why’d I buy that you ask? Well I’ll tell ya pardner.
I was considering the 50mm F2. At 449.00 on Amazon it seemed like a good buy; except, like it’s two other siblings – the 23F2 and the 35F2 its just freakin’ ugly. Plain and simple. I knew the 60 F2.4 Macro was what I needed even though I have the extension tubes for my camera. Anyway the 60 2.4 was a tad high priced at 679 or 699.00 US – I can’t remember which.
Anyway, I’m shopping the web and came across a deal for a brand new, boxed 60mm for $479.00! I couldn’t pass it up! I killed two birds with one stone – actually more as I’m getting a slightly longer focal length; better looking lens, crystal clear and tack sharp lens at that! And I saved over $200.00 to boot — or if I look at it logically, because I would not have purchased the 60mm for the 699 price tag, I got a dual purpose lens for the same price as the 50mm!
I just received it last night and this image here was one of my first seven images with the lens on my X-T2. I have yet to play with it at length. Light was dwindling fast, but on everything I shot on my walk around the block focusing was reasonably fast. Now, when I went inside and tried to take some images there, it is darn slow. I mean creepy crawly slow. I’m ok with that as I knew what I was getting into so no big deal here. But man o man is it slow. LOL. Once it locks on it’s razor sharp. Do I wish it were faster? Heck yes but I did not purchase this lens for speed, but for the clarity, sharpness, and close-focusing capabilities so I am thrilled with it!
The image above is from the raw file. No adjustments other than sharpening. And it’ll make you bleed if you get too close.
I’m in love! I can’t wait to take it out for a real spin.
I have written about the Fuji 18-55 in the past. However, on New Years Day i was shooting up in Old Orchard Beach in Maine using this wonderful little lens. It’s lightweight, solidly built, and oh so darn sharp!
As proof how sharp this this little puppy is, check out this screenshot of my lightroom image of Old Orchard Beach at 200% — Yes. 200% !! This is the raw file, Sharpened with 100% details, 41 pts of sharpening. Then below it is the full screen! Now, look at that sharpness and clarity!! I can read the Shipyard Beer sign out on the pier and that isn’t even dead center; more like top center!
Would the 16-55 2.8 be sharper? Meh. Maybe. But this is pretty darn freakin’ sharp for me, and the weight/size savings alone are, to me, worth the tiny loss of sharpness. I’d rather be more light and mobile. Your mileage may vary.
2016 was a rockin’ year! I received the blessing of a 3rd Grandson which is the grandest of all gifts. Stock sales, though down in the market overall, I made up for in volume! What that means is a ot of more work, for basically a small increase in income. Volume rules at this point; gone are the days of licensing an image for 40 – 50 bucks when anyone can go online and pick up an image for a quarter. Oh well, such is life.
On another but related note I am now dSLR free. It’s a double-edge sword and my feelings are torn. I sold the last of my Nikon gear – being the D800e and a 50mm 1.8 lens. I am now all in on Fuji with the X series cameras and lenses. Will I miss those glorious 36 megapixel files? At times I’m sure I would but in order to have those files, I had to shoot them, and in all honesty, as you can see by the stats I rarely used the camera!
So, here is a re-cap of my 2016 stats, cameras first, then lenses.
Nikon D800e: 1,371 keepers
Fuji X-T1: 4,117 keepers
Fuji X-T2: 4,503 keepers (purchased in September 2016!!)
16mm F1.4: 1,514 keepers
18-55 2.8-4.0 Zoom (my don’t leave home without it lens) 1,489
23mm F1.4: 1,094 keepers
35mm F1.4: 2,256
Fuji 55-200 Zoom: 2057 keepers
Zeiss 12mm F2.8: 135 keepers. Most unused lens, but when you need it you need it!
That’s pretty much it for my year. Hears hoping to a profitable, successful and FUN 2017.
For my birthday in 1972 I truly wanted a Minolta 101 SLR. My dad instead brought me this camera with the stipulation that if he saw me actually using the camera, and exploring photography, on my next birthday he would buy me the Minolta SRT101. This little camera and it’s tiny 110 film saw thousands of frames — mostly in Black and White. I remember getting back my first roll of prints on TriX and was blown away by the quality, contrast, and shading it offered. Remember: This was 1972.
I’ve written about the fabulous Fuji 55-200 lens in the past but I have to say it is a truly spectacular piece of glass! FF field of view approximately 84mm to 300mm. Pretty sweet.
I got this lens before the 50-140 2.8 came out; and I considered my options — upgrade? sell the 55-200? what should I do? I’m here to say I’m glad I did nothing. The 50-140 2.8, though a phenomenal lens, is too expensive, too big, and too heavy for me. I switched from Nikon to Fuji to save weight, and my back so I’ll be darn if I’m lugging the 50-140 2.8 around. Heck, I remember lugging my fabulously sharp, and oh so heavy, 70-200 2.8 in the woods. No more.
Honestly I’ve tested both. I cannot tell the difference in sharpness. I read the stories and reviews about how phenomenal the lens is, and the writers are most likely correct. But for me the 55-200 just works. But that’s me. It’s small, lightweight, and has a marvelous range, plus it’s reasonably fast! Can’t ask for anything more than that.
What I will stress here is that if you are planning on purchasing one or the other, test them. Rent them. Use them out in the field. That would be the best way to determine if you can live with one or the other. I remember a year or so ago I purchased the Fuji 56mm 1.2 based on the positive reviews online. I shot three events back to back with it the same day and, after only the first event, wound up switching to my 35 1.4, and the 18-55 to finish the job! The 56 1.2, in a extremely well-light church and I mean well lit — sunny day, large skylights, bright light colored interior, and huge windows letting in the light down both sides, the damn thing refused to lock focus often enough that I switched it out and never looked back. It was returned for a full refund that Monday morning. Maybe it was a bad copy. Maybe it was I read too much into how great the lens was. I don’t know. But I’m to going back to it. Waaaaay too much money for a fixed focal length, that almost cost me some serious dough by not working as I expected it to.
Anyway, I’ll stop here singing the praises of the 55-200. You be the judge.
On my way to the office this morning my car was rear-ended by the guy behind me, who was hit by someone behind him. So, my car be totaled. that’s the bad news. The good news is I had my car flat bedded to my mechanics shop where, while he worked on it to make it safe, and drive-able, I photographed one of his new additions. It’s a rusting hulk (soon to be restored) 1952 Ford Firetruck! That’s the good news.
While waiting for my car I spent over an hour photographing this thing of beauty. It was raining, misty, and the lighting gave the faded red paint, and the rust a soft, warm patina that is hard to duplicate.
Here is the first image I looked at tonight. It’s with the X-T2, 35mm 1.4, handheld. Processed the raw as a Classic Chrome, then I processed it in the FANTASTIC Acros film simulation. I am so taken back by the image quality of the camera in general, and then the Acros is like the cherry on top!!
A couple of images here. My grandson, Jonah. First is the original image (from raw). I shot the entire day with the 35mm F1.4, The X-T2, Acros + G filter. This is the JPEG from the raw file, processed in Classic Chrome.
Now below is the SCREENSHOT of the same image, at 200 PERCENT as viewed on a 46″ display! You can see me, and Jonah’s dad in his eyes!!! Dang…….