Jon Sienkiewicz Blog

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Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Jun 22, 2017  |  0 comments

To our younger readers, film is how we used to take pictures. We called them “photographs” and had to wait (a long time) to see how they turned out. To our not-so-young readers, here’s a quiz to test how much you remember. We also sneaked in a couple questions about current film products because after all, film is not dead. Ready? 

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Jun 15, 2017  |  1 comments

Cleanliness is next to sharpliness, at least where camera lenses are concerned. A few specks of dust can be overlooked, but when the front element has been tagged with a thumbprint it’s time for cleaning. 

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Jun 08, 2017  |  0 comments

I hadn’t planned to write a “Dads and grads guide for gifting” this year, but then I heard a radio commercial suggesting a DNA analysis kit for Father’s Day. You may have heard it, too—handy little $99 spit-testing thing that tells your dad where he got his genetics and such.

Now, back where I grew up, using the phrases “DNA test” and “Father” in the same sentence was not an event to be celebrated. So I decided that the onus is on Shutterbug to offer some gift ideas that don’t involve chromosomes. Here are seven that have clean genes but crazy names.

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Jun 01, 2017  |  0 comments

Tired of standing across the street to get your entire family into the shot? This may be the lens for you. But it comes with a couple of caveats. 

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  May 25, 2017  |  0 comments

Read this and you’ll never again say, “Seen one parade, you’ve seen them all.”

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  May 18, 2017  |  0 comments

One of my go-to lenses has a serious flaw. It doesn’t focus closer than 4-feet. I found a solution on eBay for $10 and Bob’s your uncle. 

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  May 11, 2017  |  0 comments

Binoculars make great gifts, but navigating the styles, descriptions, specifications and nomenclature can be dizzying. How does an 8x42 compare to a 7x50, and why are some models $999 while others are $99? Here’s a sensible (and short) guide to buying binoculars. 

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  May 04, 2017  |  0 comments

If the used camera lens you see online is packaged with a leash and a bone, odds are very good that it’s a dog. But in the absence of obvious evidence, how can you tell a bargain from a bagel? It’s impossible to physically examine the merchandise before purchase. And you can’t always trust what you see in the listing photos. However, you can conduct a thorough inspection upon receipt. Here are 10 things to check the minute the used lens is delivered. 

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Apr 27, 2017  |  0 comments

Just bought a 200mm f/2.8 lens for my Nikon D300s for $99! Incredibly it’s only 3.1 inches long and it’s as sharp as a handful of carpet tacks. It’s used, sure, and it’s manual focus. But hey! It was made by Nikon. It’s a real Nikon lens and it’s just one example of the fantastic bargains that are available to those who know what to look for.

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Apr 20, 2017  |  0 comments

Vacation season is approaching fast! Like millions of other Americans, you may be planning to travel to a destination where you can do a few of the things you really enjoy—including some inspired photography. Whether you’re headed to Tokyo, Toronto or Terre Haute, Indiana, here are a few tips that will help you enjoy your adventure.

Pssst! Hey – yeah, you. Share this story with your significant other and maybe they’ll take the hint that this year you both need a photo-perfect vacation.

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Apr 13, 2017  |  1 comments

I used to believe that the Auto setting on a camera was something to be avoided the way a tired waitress avoids eye contact when you’re signaling for a coffee refill—she can’t deny that you’re there, but she can ignore the hell out of you. I still feel that way about fully auto exposure, but my maniacally stubborn attitude toward Auto ISO is softening like marshmallow Peeps in a microwave.  

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Apr 06, 2017  |  0 comments

Does a 5mm scratch in the center of the front element ruin a lens? We gouged a brand new, straight-from-the-box, $499 Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 zoom to find out. Then we shot some test subjects. Was the defect visible in the images? See for yourself…

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Mar 30, 2017  |  0 comments

President Eisenhower said, “In preparing for battle I have always found that plans are useless, but planning is indispensable.” I get that. It’s a truism that applies to things much lighter than D-Day, too. So as I watch March melt into April, I summon my highly analog paper Day-Timer calendar and begin plotting my summer. In pencil, of course. Here are the seven “must-do” activities I’ve strategized so far. 

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Mar 23, 2017  |  0 comments

Last fall we published a series of fun quizzes and thankfully no one took them, or themselves, too seriously. Well, we’re doing it again. They’re a bit easier this time except for the first four and the last nine. Tell us how you scored in the comments. And no peeking at Google. Ready?

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Mar 17, 2017  |  0 comments

There’s something here for everyone this week. We look at a retro tripod from a famous filter maker, a messenger bag from a famous tripod maker, a lens case from my favorite photo backpack maker and a new circular polarizing filter from a not-so-famous accessory maker—plus a knockout protective case for your MacBook. 

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