I also agree to clear the dust inside the PC! Just keep in mind the power supply must be able to supply power to all your internal drives, I had the problem constantly replacing power suppliers untill one clever guy said get a "dual rack" ps the one the gamers use and never looked back! Currently my desktop is 11 years old with 5 internal hard drives and all my photos on 4 x 2GB external drives. My 2c.
I live and travel extensively in Southern Africa’s wilderness and arid regions, mainly with guests or solo. This is a late reply as you are about to start your trip. I do use two bodies, 1 with a wide to medium zoom and 1 with 100 – 400 zoom and extra 150-500mm which I hardly ever use but when I travel solo sometimes its handy. A short zoom for around camps and landscapes. A camera vest or fly-fishing vest is very handy, pack my extra lenses in a zip lock back to keep dust out. In my camera bag there are also my bat chargers, Polaroid filters and cleaning equipment.
On safari vehicles you will not be able to use a tripod unless you have the budget to hire the vehicle for yourself and that is expensive! Leave the tripod at home and if you need to some sort of steady support, bring a steady hiking stick, yes it does not have a camera shoe but you can use it to support your camera! I do it a lot and use the walking stick when walking as well. Open vehicles are your biggest problem or any type of game drive vehicle: dust dust dust! Bring along big and strong plastic zip lock bags and put your camera in it when not shooting. Bring an empty bean bag, fill it up with rice or beans when you arrive and it is very handy to support the camera as well.
You mentioned Zimbabwe so it might include Victoria Falls and there the zip lock bags will be very handy and as well as an absorbing cloth to dry your lens, there are a lot of spray!! Best time to shoot the falls are from 12:00 - 15:00 as then you will see many rainbows! You can hire a raincoat at the entrance for about $3-4 but do hire it!!
I make my laptop available for clients to transfer their daily shoots to their portable drives so that they don’t have to bring their own laptops. My groups are fairly small and easy to manage transfers. Otherwise bring a number of memory cards with and back at the camps when you are about to hit the bed delete unwanted images, not in front of other guests or while driving on safari vehicles as that is rude and you miss the environment!
Only in private nature reserves are guides allowed to go off road to get closer to animals but many now started to stop this as it is very dangerous! In National parks guides are not allowed to go off any roads or tracks, if caught they get a heavy fine or can lose their license to guide! Game parks are a zoo where humans are in moving cages while wildlife roams freely and unpredictable! Enjoy your Safari!
A lot has been said and burkphoto said it well! I'v been a newspaper photographer covering everything, then a military photographer completely different type of photography. Then back to newspaper but more social and then to weddings all in the days of film.
When my son started wedding photography on the sideline the digital world changed the world of wedding photography and sales were based on the amount of photos the bridal couple will get! I've guided my son to concentrate on the art of capturing the wedding not on the amount of shots but the amounts of shots helped to ensure eyes were open and not for anything else! He will show a couple a sample of his work and provide contact details of work done and then he will listen to the likes and dislikes the bridal couple wants and they will visit the venue beforehand at the same time as when the wedding will takes place.
But been an ex wedding photographer and a father of two weddings I did ask my son to take a few "old fashion" photos like family groups with the couple before running away and to be creative. Those family photos with Grand dad, moms, uncles, aunts, cousins does have a place in an album! Yes I know its the bridle couples day but its also a family day!
But a warning, a photographer is a photographer and a videographer takes care of the video and can never be the same person!! Video is a complete different story about lights, hidden lights, steady camera work and sound! You need microphones all over to capture the event and when I did video, I used three cameras, many microphones, many lights and it took hours and hours of editing and its expensive!
I've discovered that video is a problem, yes you would like to have recordings of key moments but you don't want to sit through the whole event again! After a complete edit of the days event I made a music video using a song the couple likes to condense the whole days activity into 3 to 4 minutes which was shown over and over to friends and used on the internet.
At the end of the day, a printed wedding album will keep memories alive for many many years and not so much a video!
Been in the broadcast industry for many moons and back when TV started in South Africa the only screen size was 4:3 from small to huge monitors! As they were professional monitors there were never an issue with "resolution". But when computers entered the world they brought with them there own monitor systems. First all screens where 4:3 but the pc world is driven by the computer games industry and the gamers wanted a bigger screen not so much by height but in width and the film industry followed them and later we started to see 16:9 screens. Resolution is the clarity of the screen not the size. When it comes to photography you can control the resolution via the video card's software. The problem with web sites today is that you need to cater for all screen sizes eg 15in, 17, 20 and bigger or even the various cellphone and tablet sizes! But to control the output to your screen is via settings of the display or also called video card of your computer. Many video cards can display more than one even up to four screens and you can adjust the size of every screen via card software. Crazy world!
I think fantom said it well! Glass filter either clear or UV will no protect your lens it you drop the combined body and lens neither will a lens hood! It all depends where you are and what you are shooting! You don't need a UV/clear glass filter attached to your lens in a studio maybe a hood not for protection but to keep reflecting light off your lens also pending your angle of shooting.
But when you are on a safari in Southern Africa or Central Africa on the back of a open game drive vehicle you will need a clear glass filter as it so much easier to dust off the filter with a cloth and it can also create tiny scratches but then its on the filter not on the lens element! But it will not protect the lens entirely from dust either! When shooting at Victoria Falls a hood will not keep the water off your front lens element but a clear glass filter will and again you will try and rub off the water with a cloth which might create tiny scratches but you will not scratch the front lens element and again it will not protect the whole lens or attached body! Yes, there is a use for filters like the clear glass, ND and Polaroid but in my view its not for protection of the lens, basically there is nothing available to protect your lens and body from breaking if the two happens to fall out of your hands! In the days of b&w film I've used various colour filters but with digital and computer editing you no longer really need them.
I do know a few photographers here in South Africa that does use colour filters when they shoot for B&W photos, they believe it does have an effect on the final product but only one filter that is extremely useful is the Polaroid. Computer software can not created the same effect as a Polaroid.
I live in Southern Africa and visit South Africa, Botswana and Namibia wild and remote regions regularly in my Land Rover Defender. I love taking photos of all living creatures crossing or next to my road. I use a homemade bean bag not filled with rice or sand but beans! It’s not heavy either but heavy enough to hang underneath my tripod in windy situations.
Whenever i need to shoot something from the vehicle I always use my bean bag resting on the glass of the window. (I do have a modern 4x4 with electrical windows and also use the same bean bag and camera body with 500mm lens and the motor of the electrical window never gave me any problems, maybe it’s a Japanese make).
I always turn off the vehicles engine as a diesel engine does create a great deal of vibrations never use the sound system while on safari and the heater is off in winter when there is a photo shoot! Shooting in all weather conditions, sand storms, rain with some hail in between and extreme temperatures like 40+C and never had any problems with my gear other than dust!
I made my own bean bag as it’s so easy and so much cheaper and yes I did use and will use a pool noddle but a pool noddle doesn’t work that nice if you want to steady your camera on the bonnet of the vehicle there a sturdy homemade bean bag works the best. The beans are inside a plastic bag inside the canvas bag so moist or even rain water cannot contaminate the beans.
Your setup looks fine and both, Photoshop and Video Editing are power hungry software and I don't think you are that professional more a hobbyist so your setup is fine. I'm a pro video editor and need basically 4 super fast pcs to do my editing at work but at home, I do edit some travel and family videos and a mainly [photography and don't need all that super power but not on you list is SOUND! You need a good sound card (internal or external) and some damn good (near field speakers) speakers, not cheapies! A sound card that you can attached a microphone or cd player to it other than your current CD rom and knowledge to do proper sound editing. Many people forget about sound/audio but if you are going to do video editing get some good sound cards and speakers!
Great question what to do with all the thousands of digital images! Mostly it stays on harddrives and very difficult to show to friends and families! My dad used to shoot slides and then from a young age we had slide shows every now and then, that was before video! Yes you can share on Facebook or any kind of social media platform but soon they disappear until you load up some new ones. Many viewers will either like it or even give a comment but then its gone!
During the film days you handed in your film to be processed and got 4x6 prints back, through away the duds and the others made it into a album which was portable and did not use any form of power to illuminate! Still today I page through my albums but photos are starting to fall out!
Its been my idea to compile a photobook for a long time but hesitated as it is expensive in my country to print! However I just have to do it as it is the only way to show friends, family and guests of the places I have visited and its mobile! I don' want to make a proper portfolio printed on high quality paper like coffee table books as this is very expensive! My need is more like a magazine type of photobook, not necessary magazine type of paper but "bending" paper type of book so that I can have several books! My other problem is: what size of book? A4 portrait or A4 landscape or what ever!
"I need to replace my old 3 ccd Panasonic video camera." I've been in the television world for close to 40 years and it's my believe that if you shoot video it has to be a dedicated video camera and shooting stills its a SLR or now DSLR! I live in South Africa and we use PAL and in the USA its NTSC. Video is two fields to make a frame which you call interlaced. DSLR's video is for the computer screen which is called frame rate or non-interlaced. That is why true video cameras are more expensive than DSLR with video capacity. Audio is another problem, no DSLR has facility for XLR in-puts. Yes I know that DSLR's are used to produce television material, very popular in Nigeria but it's really a pain! If you want to make TV productions get a proper video camera! Gopro out of the question as it can not zoom! Get the equipment designed for the job. A mini (car) has an engine and four wheels but you need a special vehicle to drive in the desert and thick sand called a 4x4 and it also has 4 wheels and an engine! For home movies a DSLR will work. Plus, a dedicated video camera handles much better than a DSLR (forget shake reduction). My two cents!
billnourse, those "spots" could be bugs and if I look at your shatter speed of 1/15 which is very low, that could be the reason for the "stripe" effect, afterall you were shooting at a pond!
RichKenn, I also want some advice! I want to make a photo book or coffee table of my travels through Southern Africa, more for my self and to get my best photos off the computer for friends and family to enjoy. There are a great number of photos so its going to be a thick book or I might have to divide it into three for the main three countries that I regularly travel to. What size of photo book to members here recommend is a good viewing size not necessary high quality photo paper and hard cover or soft cover?
E.L.. Shapiro , well said don't shoot down up-coming photographers, the internet is a good learning source and many don't have the money - yet - to attend special schools and your advice is very good! Those pro's that complain that amateurs are taking their work away must also wake-up! As a photographer who wants to make a living out of photography must be well aware that taking photos is not the only part of your job. I know many pro photographers that have to give classes, running paid workshops and keep an active website for marketing. Some of the pro's in my country work very very hard and enter their work to many paid competitions and if they win awards they use it as a marketing tool but I am also aware there are photographers, like myself, that don't enter paid competitions as I don't need that kind of exposer, my work is excepted by my clients. There are also great non-awarded photographers that are asked to join special wildlife safari tours but they know their equipment and can give advice to clients in the field. To price your work is difficult and asking that type of question on a forum like this is good but the guy dit not informed the forum what is expected from him! Good luck!
Hi Lynn first, check your camera if you can recharge the battery via a usb cable as many "bigger" cameras you can not do it, you need an external 110 volt charger or a 12 volt to 110 volt invertor charger , so this will exclude any solar panels! Regarding how many cards, its be said that you might not be taking a great amount of photos so I think you should plan for max of 200 per day. I shoot raw and jpg and never fill my 32gb card on vacation (African wilderness safaris) per day and I have 2 cards per camera. I do take along 3 sets of 32gb cards with me on a four day trip into the bush without downloading them onto my laptop that stays in the camp. I only review my images once I've shot them just to make sure that the lighting and focusing were ok otherwise I never review them at night to save battery power. I do take with me 2 extra batteries, one for each camera. Don't take the laptop with you, leave it at home you don't need it! Go as light as possible as there are little packing space on a canoe and its going to be wet. Waterproof bags are a must plus a cloth to wipe splash water from your gear. Enjoy the trip.
Mira, you mentioned that you are not seasoned photographer and that you are retired who wants to travel and get into photography. Well, I will start off with a basic lens like a 16-35mm and 24-240mm with polarized filters and take it from there. Photography is a damn expensive hobby but your interests will guide you regarding what lenses to buy later on. Oh, and a lightweight tripod also very handy.