No not what you’re thinking – this is Gear Acquisition Syndrome. A scourge which afflicts photographers (and I think many others) where sufferers compulsively buy equipment thinking it is what they must absolutely have in order to take their art to the next level. More rational voices are ignored which tell them “the most important piece of gear you need to improve your photography is YOU!”. Are they right though? Well…kinda, but it’s not the whole story. I am writing this because, possibly as a result of lockdown cabin fever, I have begun to suffer from this terrible condition. I thought I had it under control, even reversed it when I sold all of my Nikon DSLR gear. That was hard but I took a rational decision. I was running two systems – Nikon and Fuji. It occurred to me that everything the Nikon could do, I could do using the Fuji. It’s more portable, more versatile, with more fully featured autofocus and video, a joy to use and delivers high quality images. The Nikon gear was heavy and bulky. Not best for landscape or urban photography, useless for street and travel photography. The Nikon only went abroad with me once and even then I mostly used the smaller and lighter Panasonic GX7 I had back then. It had to go, and as a consolation I upgraded to the Fuji XT3. It wasn’t without regret – My Nikon D750 delivered suburb image quality, class leading dynamic range and noise handling and was great to use. I still miss it. So I made a rational decision. End of…..or was it??

I regret to inform you I just purchased a Fuji X- Pro 2. This is (was) their top of the line camera, built like a tank, beautifully crafted, and I wanted it specifically for street photography with prime (i.e. not zoom) lenses. It has a lot going for it in that respect – it is a retro styled rangefinder camera. Holding this camera somehow connects me with decades of history and romance, I find it inspirational. It features a hybrid optical/electronics viewfinder, combining always-on situational awareness with a “HUD” which takes  care of exposure and focusing.

I tried it out yesterday and yes it worked a treat, delivering some excellent images. But I have had to make some compromises due to poor ergonomics. It turns out this may have actually improved my shooting style!

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