What's the Best...
At least once a week, I get an email asking:
I need toâ€¦ What's the bestâ€¦ ?
What's the best camera? What's the best lens? What's the best website?
Why do the people ask for the best?
People say that they want the best when they don't. Since this blog is about photography, let's talk about the best image quality. Shouldn't it be about image quality? By far the best cameras, for image quality, are either the Hasselblads or the Phase One/Leaf based cameras in the 50 to 80 megapixels range with the matching lenses. Two bodies, you always need a backup just in case, a standard lens, a wide angle, and a short tele cost around $150,000 in my part of the world. I don't see too many photographers (professionals or otherwise) lining up for these at the camera stores. Late last year, I was talking to the manager of a professional camera store, he sold the grand total of 3 medium format cameras for 2011 and he was very happy.
When dealing with projects, you can have:
- On time
- On budget
- On quality
Everything is a compromise. When it comes to cameras, it's a balancing act between the quality of the image, the camera/lens size, the cost, the ease of use, the level of knowledge, and where you are located (you can be killed if you carry a camera in some places like the Sonora State of Mexico with the drug wars)â€¦
Since it's a compromise, each person must make their own choice. Ask anybody that knows cameras and when asked about the â€œbest street photography cameraâ€, everybody (almost) will say: the Leica M serie. I don't like Leica, it's not my style, I rented one for a weekend and hated it. I prefer something like a Canon 7D and with a 70-200L f/4 or an Olympus EP-3 with the 45mm f/1.8 as a small pocketable camera.
It's my choice. Your choice will be different from mine. The point is that there is no one â€œbest.â€ Who's the best? Canon or Nikon? The Canon 5DMk3 or the Nikon D800? The Canon 1Dx or the Nikon D4? Some people will look at the noise at ISO 51,200 and declare that this or that camera is the â€œbest.â€ It's like judging a car by how the engine runs at 5,250 rpms (revolutions per minute).
For most of us, unless you are Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gatesâ€¦, cost is always a factor. And for vast majority of us, it's one of the most important factor. So much for the best.
- According to the JD Power customer satisfaction 2011, the best cars are the Porsche.
- But according to the JD Power customer retention 2011, people that buy again the same brand as their previous vehicle, the best cars are the Hyundai! It's not Porsche, Lexus, or Mercedesâ€¦