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06-20-2015, 05:52 PM - 8 Likes   #1
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When less is less, more is more, and the Q is the Q!

Talk about a super-duty Q series camera is plentiful. There is always talk of EVFs, tilting screens, more primes, faster AF, etc. I should know because I participated on many of those threads. Heck, I probably started a few! Sometimes you don't need "more" to fuddle through and having "less" will cripple you. What you need is "just right". Today I needed a bit of "just right" and I got it from my Q7 with the 01 prime. Read on ...

The Tahoe Rock Half Marathon was on today and my wife and I both ran it. For those familiar with the Lake Tahoe area, the half marathon started at Spooner Lake at the top of Hwy 50 and finished at the recently opened Hard Rock Hotel in Stateline. I carried a 28 oz water bottle and my iPhone in my left hand and ... wait for it ... wait for it ... my Q7 with an 01 prime in my right hand! That's right, I ran 13.1 miles with a Q7 camera in my right hand. I wrapped the camera strap 3 times around my wrist for security. The camera was set in TAv mode with auto AF point selection. My aperture was locked down to f/2.8 for top IQ and my shutter speed varied from 1/1000 to 1/4000. Having "more" in this case would have gotten in my way of photographing the event from a runners perspective. An EVF is useless when you're running. Tilting screen? Useless again. Power or hand zoom? Too complicated when my hands are full. Extra dials and buttons? More junk to accidentally press and screw up my TAv configuration.

The Q7 is small enough to be operated by one hand after configuring. It's light enough to carry while running without fatiguing. The small sensor gives me near infinite depth of field for what I am doing. Perfect!

I uploaded some pictures to a PF album. They are downsized and heavily compressed for storage but the point here is not to pixel peep. The IQ is there. I can zoom in to see eyelashes, skin textures, and the grain of the asphalt road. Whatever. Sometimes the pictures were heavily cropped. Stop to compose? What? Heck no. You're running a half marathon! Many of the pictures were crooked so they required rotation too which eats away at the picture.

Here's what the Q7 can do when operated single handedly in one shooting mode (TAv) and auto AF when running and when not running.

A warm-up was led by a Kaia F.I.T, a women's fitness group.

The crowd was rocking out!

After paying respects to the American flag with a playing of the national anthem, 1600 runners set out on the 13.1 mile run. I raised my camera up in the air and caught this scene. It's still a wee bit crooked but good enough.

The route was lined with random people cheering us on.

Each aid station was well stocked with liquids and food.

And they offered plenty of encouragement along the way too!

Each of the stations had some sort of musical entertainment too. Some had DJs but many had local bands and musicians.

I do not think I would have been even remotely successful with my K-3. There is no way I could run with that system for 13 miles in my hand. Besides, with a system like that my fellow runners may think I'm a pro and I did not want to compete with the paid pros working on site. Why should I get in their way with a big K-3? My recently acquired M10 is much smaller than my K-3 but still too heavy and bulky. It has a viewfinder I wouldn't be using and a screen I wouldn't be tilting. My iPhone sounds like it would be the perfect companion tool but its on the opposite extreme of the K-3. It's too primitive for the runner on the go. Response time is slow. Controls are awkward. JPG IQ performance is poor compared to what I can get with raw shooting. The Q7 was perfect! Not having a zoom was a blessing. It would have been another thing for me to futz with. I don't have the time to stop, compose, and carefully think about what I'm doing. Should I zoom in a bit more? Maybe I ought to zoom out instead? Since I'm running anyways I might as well zoom with my feet.

So there you have it!

---------- Post added 06-20-15 at 06:05 PM ----------

And if you don't believe that I ran with a Q7, a water bottle, and an iPhone .... here you go!

06-20-2015, 06:19 PM   #2
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Yeah, an' today I was thankful for the Q7+08 simply 'cause it was in the bag. Q's have many niches.

Went to work at the airport today and didn't really check what I was carryin' and had the DA*300 mounted to the K5IIs instead of the Tamron AF SP 70-200 I expected to be in the case. Damn, not good. Time to make lemonade.

Got some unusual images of a few historic aircraft that wouldn't have worked out so well with the lenses I'd expected to have along anyway.

The Q7 and the 08 + 06 + 03 have been wonderful back ups for makin' lemonade when the 'plan' fell through and they take up SO little room I've no excuse to not carry 'em along. (It's like havin' a utility in-outfielder that bats .319 on the bench.)
06-20-2015, 08:45 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by 6BQ5 Quote
And if you don't believe that I ran with a Q7, a water bottle, and an iPhone .... here you go!
Great story and pictures. Thanks for sharing. Congrats on the half marathon too - an effort not to be sneezed at

06-20-2015, 09:12 PM   #4
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A great story and some really wonderful photos. Thanks a lot for your contribution to explaining what really makes the Q special.

06-20-2015, 10:08 PM   #5
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Thanks for sharing, great story and great choice of the right tool.
06-21-2015, 04:45 AM   #6
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Congrats and great stuff! I may have a half marathon in my future too.
06-21-2015, 11:49 AM   #7
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Great coverage of that event. You made great use of the Q7 and brought to light another use for this versatile little camera.
06-21-2015, 06:17 PM   #8
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Thanks for positive feedback, everyone! I was very happy to write this up and post the pics.

06-24-2015, 10:48 AM   #9
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Great story and pics 6BQ5. Enjoyed it all.
06-27-2015, 06:10 PM   #10
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I could take pictures like that with an EVF. Not without one. Not all of us are steady armed athletes with perfect vision.
I have taken a lot of nice pictures with the Q10, but it always comes down to specific types of photo for which the lack of a VF is not so impacting.
06-28-2015, 03:38 PM   #11
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@Antonio - I am far from a steady arm athlete but I thank you for the compliment. What saved me here is a fast shutter speed, a wide angle lens, and generous AF point count in the Q7. The fast shutter speed of 1/2000 will freeze nearly all motion and shake. A wide angle lens gives me some space for cropping to adjust the composition. Having many AF ensures that at least one of them will ID my subject. An EVF would have hindered me.

I'll tell you what did hinder me. *drum roll*

Polarized Sunglasses!

The screen turn black when the camera is rotated to a portrait orientation! This isn't a knock on the Q7.
07-12-2015, 11:19 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by 6BQ5 Quote
I'll tell you what did hinder me. *drum roll*

Polarized Sunglasses!

The screen turn black when the camera is rotated to a portrait orientation! This isn't a knock on the Q7.
I've noticed the exact same issue with polarised sunglasses when hiking and using both the Q and Q-S1. Might need to invest in some different sunglasses...
07-13-2015, 10:35 AM   #13
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Well, polarized sunglasses really do work better than non-polarized ones (there's a reason they do it after all), so I would hesitate to use lesser sunglasses just to avoid this issue.

It's actually funny because pependicular polarized layers causing all light to be stopped is the principle that allows LCD screens to work. They include a layer that is polarized in one direction, and then they selectively polarize another layer to varying degrees in different places to mask out the backlight in such a way as to let only the light that creates the image you can see through. So when you look through another polarized layer that is perpendicular to the first layer, you mask out the entire backlight and get a black screen.

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