I got a chance to check out the Focus on Imaging event for the first time ever with Ideal Photos. I wasn’t sure what to expect but after having a look at the website a few days before, I saw that Nikon and Canon which meant I had to go!
After a 4 hour drive down due to a few wrong turns we finally made it to the NEC Birmingham. The venue was absolutely packed from amateur photographers to the pros, with everyone hoping to check out the new kit, bag some bargains, and meeting the various people in the industry.
The day began with me heading straight to the Nikon booth, I just wanted to see what they had on, and thankfully I arrived just in time to catch an insight into the new D7100. The camera itself is something I’ve been interested in upgrading to for a little while. The presenter went through the various bits of it such as the 24 megapixel sensor, the missing optical low pass filter, and its 51 auto focus points. After he answered a few questions, I got the chance to play about with the camera using the 18-105mm kit lens it can be bundled with. The view was crisp and clear with an amazingly accurate AF. The camera itself was easy to hold and doesn’t feel too bulky. Overall, after playing about with it, I want it even more!
The next stop was to see what Canon had on offer, the 5D Mark 3. This full frame camera with its 22mp sensor and 61 point AF was also a joy to use. I can see why the Mark 2 was so widely loved, and is nice to see such a big change in the next revision. I didn’t get as much time to play about since hunger had set in! The one great thing that I must say Canon did well was building a massive mountain on which they had planted all their telephoto lenses. From this vantage point I could see across the entire arena, and the zoom on the lenses was absolutely amazing. I’ve never used a telephoto lens before so doing this was a hell of an experience.
The next couple of hours were spent wandering around and checking out the various helpful seminars that were on, some involving different photo techniques, others about editing, while some explaining how to use a printer! I have to say PNY had a bit of a random booth, since they are mainly a memory card brand, seeing them having a fake F1 car set up to let you play a racing game was pretty awesome.
After checking out the various booths, I dropped into a seminar by Phil Coates. He gave some details on the previous arctic expedition he was on, as well as filming in some dodgy Russian looking place. The point of the presentation was to promote how well the various Canon products worked in the different situations, and how it is vital to choose the right equipment when planning these kinds of things. I was hoping to get a lot more out of it, but it seemed a lot like a Canon plug, still it was fun seeing the various locations he filmed in.
The day wrapped up with more wandering about, grabbing pictures of the models, and finally heading home. Overall the event was pretty cool, but there wasn’t the kind of bargains I was expecting. A lot of the ‘sales’ could be found cheaper on the Internet but still it was good to have a look of the stuff available. Still I’m thankful for the various companies taking the time to set up and spend their time answering massive amount of questions that were probably thrown at them.