Digital Q&A: The Gear Guide

Today’s Post by Joe Farace

manfrotto-tripodI’ve recently updated to our Gear page and a few of you have taken notice, which brings me to the first question:

Q: On your new Gear page, Mark tells us that he uses a Sirui Monopod. What about you? Do you prefer to use a tripod or monopod?

A: The short answer is that because of the handy size of my Olympus and Panasonic cameras, I don’t always use a monopod or tripod but I do use them occasionally.

My favorite monopod is the three-legged (they are removable) Sirui P-326S Carbon Fiber monopod. (Sometimes Mark and I do agree.) You can read about it here. Tripods? I have several but the one that gets used the most is a middle-of-the-road Manfrotto MT055XPRO3-3W aluminum tripod that has a three-way pan/tilt head. I know there are lots of ball head fans out there—my wife is one of them—but I’m not. My sentimental favorite is a custom red and gold Tiltall tripod.

Q: What kind of computers do you use for your imaging? That’s not on the Gear page either!

tiltallA: The computers I used for this blog and imaging are the same ones that I use every day: A 27-inch Apple 5K iMac with 16GB RAM running OS Sierra 10.12, two 3TB external drives and an external optical drive. A second 20-inch iMac with 4GB RAM running OS El Capitan 10.11.6 is also my Windows computer running Microsoft Windows 10 (under Apple’s Boot Camp.)

The computers are networked and a wireless router lets me connect my 15-inch MacBook Pro laptop that I also take on location and use in my home studio. In the digital imaging universe, these are what I would call middle-of-the-road machines. I know photographers that work with less complex computers and others working with more extensive and expensive systems.

For imaging, I run Photoshop CS6 because as many of you know by now that I’m a devout cheapo and refuse to send Adobe my money every month. I write using Microsoft Word 2008 for Mac but I really, really have to update (to at least 2011 for Mac) and will do so as soon as I get a few extra bucks.

Coming Up: In Digital Q&A next week. Although there is some information about camera bags on the Gear page, I’ll take a look at the bags I use and why I like them.