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People are often shocked to find out how little gear I travel with. An economy of weight and space is important when traveling. What works on a controlled photo shoot isn’t going to cut it in the field. The gear I use has evolved over time, in some cases dramatically. Here is my current lineup of camera gear.
Sony A7rii After shooting with Nikon cameras for almost a decade in 2016 I made the switch to Sony. The A7rii is Sony’s top of the line mirrorless camera and the image quality is fantastic. With 42 megapixels, the resolution is incredible as is the low light capability. The weight actually isn’t much less than an SLR, but it is much more compact and takes up much less space. Moreover, the lenses are significantly smaller than full frame lenses from Nikon or Canon.
Sony A6000This is my backup/secondary body. The A6000 is the size of a point and shoot camera, but it supports Sony E-mount lenses like the A7rii does. If something should happen to my main camera, I can pull this out and still use my all lenses. The image quality is pretty good, but it is a fraction of the price of the A7rii.
I usually carry 3 lenses with me when I travel. I’ve used a similar 3 lens combo for the last decade, even when I was shooting with Nikon. A superzoom for everyday use, a wide angle lens, and a very fast 50mm prime lens.
This is my go-to lens. I easily take the vast majority of my photo using this one lens. It is reasonably wide, with a reasonable zoom, and with very good quality. I can put this one lens on my camera and be sure that I will be able to shoot almost everything I encounter in a given day. The key in travel photography is versatility, and this is the most versatile Sony E-mount lens on the market.
Of the photographers I know who use Sony cameras, many say that this is the best lens for Sony cameras….period. Having a wide angle lens with you for landscape and architecture shots is important. Even if it isn’t the lens I use most of the time, I’d miss it if it wasn’t there. The lens contains glass from Carl Zeiss, which is always good.
A 50mm prime lens is usually the least used lens in my bag, however, I like having it because it is also the fastest lens in my bag. It is great at extremely low light and also if you really want to play with depth of field and bokeh.
Tripod and Ball Head
I’ve used several different tripods during my career. The carbon fiber tripods and ballhead from Really Right Stuff are the best I’ve used by far. They aren’t cheap, but they are worth it. I have the TVC-24 tripod with BH-40 LR ballhead. It is incredibly sturdy and rugged.