Let’s Get Small

Today’s Post by Mark Toal

“…we’re all gonna go out.. and get really small!”—Steve Martin

Steve Martin was way ahead of his time when he coined the phrase “let’s get small” back in the 1970’s. Every once in a while I need to remind myself that mirrorless camera are first and foremost about getting small.

GM5 in hand

As part of my job for Panasonic I visit camera stores and photo trade shows to talk to photographers about cameras and photography. I used to frequently get into the discussion about DSLR’s vs. mirrorless cameras. GM5 JohnIt would usually involve somebody telling me how much better the larger sensor is in a digital SLR, how much better it is at higher ISO’s and on and on. There is some truth to these arguments. When we shot film; medium format was better that 35mm and so on. This is still true for digital, the larger the sensor the better the image should be. And that’s why I sometimes fall for full frame envy until I pick one up. The body may be small, but the lenses are still large and heavy.

Older “baby boomer” photographers were the first to realize how great it was to carry a small camera like a Fuji, Olympus, Panasonic or Sony. I think that’s why I now I see younger professional photographers making the switch to mirrorless cameras.

I think it’s a good idea to think about what you shoot before you buy a camera. Do you make prints larger that 30×40 inches, do you shoot in extremely low light? If you don’t, then “get small” and check out mirrorless cameras. Your bank account and your back will appreciate it too. Oh, and don’t be surprised if you take more images and have more fun.