RIP my Canon G7X Mark II

It was already a bit finicky last summer. But this time it really is: my Canon G7X Mark II is dead.

This is a camera I bought mostly for video vlogging and others. It was my work horse for the few videos I uploaded on YouTube, but I didn’t use it much for photography, even though it’s very capable as I always preferred my Fuji X or the phone as convenience.

The symptoms. I have a freshly charged battery.

– Press the power on button
– The lens extends as the Canon logo appear on the screen. So there is power and the screen works.
– At that point after the green activity led blinks, the screen shuts off, while the lens stay extended.
– The zoom control do nothing, nor do the shutter. The mode dial don’t seem to change anything.
– The power switch doesn’t do anything either so I can’t turn off and retract the lens.
– The only button that does anything is the playback button. Pressing it, retracts the lens and enables playback, showing the pictures on the card. I even got the clock setup as the battery was drained for long enough. Another confirmation the screen works. Including touch, as was as the control wheel.
– Pressing the video record button or the shutter triggers the lens extension. But then the screen turns black, like if nothing came from the camera sensor, and switches off.
– The only way to switch the camera off is to press playback and then the power button act normally to retract the lens.

Has anyone any idea?

Some samples I took with it (pardon Penny’s cuteness):

KVB Piusstraße U-Bahn station, Cologne, Germany
Penny posing.
Passenger reading a magazine, on a flight somewhere between Montréal and London.
Penny, as usual.

And one of the first pictures I took with it:

Penny is comfy as I try my new camera.

I might as well just replace it. Shall I get the G7X MkIII ? I’d like to avoid Sony.

I’m not excluding taking a crack at fixing it as it could be a benign problem. I don’t think it’s worth getting it serviced otherwise given the cost.

Hasselblad X-Pan

Beau Photo tells us Hasselblad “The Holy Grail” XPan – Is it worth it?:

I’ve shot with the XPan numerous times, and each time I would put my clown mask on and tell myself that this camera will be mine someday. After a year of using this camera, I believe the XPan is worth it.

I remember more than 20 years ago hearing about the Hasselblad XPan, or its Japanese original, the Fujifilm TX-1 (the Hasselblad is actually just a rebadged Fujifilm). It was expensive, its lenses were expensive.

But what is it? It is a rangefinder film camera that could shoot in panoramic format, 24x65mm on a 35mm film (135) as well as the standard 24x36mm. It was pretty much the only option for panoramic photography without using a rotating lens like the Horizon or Widelux cameras, or without getting an expensive Mamiya 7 with the adapter to use 135 film instead of the 6×7 120 film frames.

I remember reading an article where the photographer used the XPan to cover a bicycle race. And vertically framed pictures showed us how unique this camera could be.

Too bad it is even more expensive now.

DPReview moving forward

After announcing the death of DPReview back in March, and many rumors, it seems that DPReview has found a new owner:

We’re thrilled to share the news that Gear Patrol has acquired DPReview. Gear Patrol is a natural home for the next phase of DPReview’s journey,

There a reassurance that the same team would be running it with the same editorial direction.

This is great news given that Amazon, the previous owner, has been know to burn down the house rather than selling it to “competition”.

RIP DPReview

Long time no posting.

Today, 21st of March, came the sad news that DPReview is closing 10th of April 2023.

After nearly 25 years of operation, DPReview will be closing in the near future. This difficult decision is part of the annual operating plan review that our parent company shared earlier this year.

Apparently it costs too much for the biggest cloud company in the world to even keep read-only (ie no content added).

Bravo to Amazon for destroying 25 years+ of content. They bought the site in 2007.

New Instax camera, new instax frames

Some new Fujifilm Instax.

The boring:

Instax Mini 40 is just another Instax Mini camera. A look reminding us of the Instax Mini 90 more than the other Instax Mini, but with little settings (4). For CAD$130 it’s on the higher end price range. Still, nothing in sight for more serious photographers ; I see no reason to get one while I have a Mini 90.

The thing I can get behind:

Fujifilm also announced a new frame design for Instax Mini film. Frames are the novelty part of Instax Mini where you have frames around the picture that are not white. Black borders have been around, as well as other novelty for which I might not be their target demographics. This new contact sheet frame brings contact sheet film-like border, something the various “effect” phone apps have had. No sprocket holes, but the film name and a frame number printed in yellow. For once I can really get behind this novelty.

The latter come bundled with the former in a CAD$140 bundle.

To be released April 21st 2021

Happy Holidays

It’s the season, Penny wears costumes. At least for the pictures.

Penny wearing her Chistmas sweater. – Fujifilm X-T3, XF35mm f/1.4
Penny with the reindeer antlers for the holidays – Fujifilm X-T3, XF35mm f/1.4

Happy holidays !

Developing black and white slide film

Kelly-Shane on the Go Everywhere channel made a 7 minutes video to show us how develop black & white slide film, only using regular black and white film, black and white chemistry, and some household chemicals to preform the reversal process.

I am actually surprised it is that easy. I always wanted to try black and white slides but the availability of Agfa Scala always made it a hard sell.

Fujfilm X-Pro3

Without much surprise, Fujifilm announced the X-Pro3 in late October.
It is an evolution of the X-Pro2. The main distinguishable feature is the LCD screen: by default it is hidden, with a smaller visible screen limited to show settings, and a picture of the currently used film emulation. The screen then flip out to be viewed and make the viewfinder harder to use. It is a bit like the Leica M-D: taking a photography approach where one doesn’t chimp on the screen after taking the picture.

I haven’t had my hands on it, so I can’t really tell whether I’d like it or not.

The end of Polaroid Spectra film

This is not the first time Polaroid Spectra film becomes discontinued. The first time was when Polaroid went under and the remaining stock depleted. DPReview now reports that Polaroid Originals is stopping the production of Spectra film because the remaining cameras are now aging, unrepairable, and there is nothing they can do about it.

This is a bigger problem with film photography in general that I wrote about previously: the whole production supply chain, from cameras to film processors and scanners is in danger. Nobody develops new hardware, because it requires a lot of R&D and the old one is becoming harder and harder to repair, non withstanding for processors and scanner where the software is antique and only runs on obsolete systems.

Instagram selfies are destructive

The Huffington Post Canada has an article about Self(ie) destruction. They put it bluntly:

Destruction has become its own genre of self-portraiture. We break things, harass lounging and peaceful animals, and ruin the fun for everyone. Our faces, apparently, are that important.

When you think you are more important than the environment surrounding you… There are ways to take selfies responsibly, but destruction is not one of them.

There are other example of people falling to their death for the sake of a selfie.

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