Contact Me

For information on setting up an appointment, general questions you may want to voice to me personally, or to set up a photo-walk (if you are passing through or live in the Lexington area), contact me via email at mwdurr@bellsouth.net, or by phone at 502-316-4588.

Thanks!

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17 comments on “Contact Me

  1. G’day Mate, Fantastic blog. I am a Nikon man but I carry with me everywhere (ok perhaps not everywhere) my Sony NEX 5 for photographing on the fly. I just received my Nikon G – Sony E mount adapter in the mail on friday and just been trying out different lenses. So far it is easy to shoot (espeacially with the peaking) but I am still yet to hit the Oh Yeah! shots…. will keep trying though and will see if I can post some shots in the future.

    • Thanks a bunch, Pat, glad you enjoy my blog. I’m glad to see you are delving into manual-focus work via the excellent peaking feature of our NEX cameras! It takes a while to get used to, and another while to get accurate doing it (large-aperture lenses help out a LOT). But once you do, those Oh YEAH! shots will start popping up.

    • Hello. Great Blog! I’m new to the whole real camera hobby… Previously I was using regular P&S from Canon… 3 weeks ago I made a huge leap and got the new Sony NEX-6 w/ kit lens after researching the great reviews. I’m interested in getting my second lens. After considering both, Sony NEX 35mm and 50mm I decided on the 50mm… What do u think of that lens?… Also, would you suggest I just invested the $300-400 on a few different Nikon lenses that u have reviewed and the Pro adapter ur using? Trying to get the best bang for my buck!!! I’m concerned I make bad choices and blow away money on crappy lenses; after all I’m just learning to really shoot.

      • Hey there Bohemio, thanks for dropping by, and glad to see you are getting into photography! You are indeed right, a move from a simple point-and-shoot all the way up to what is essentially a DSLR (in function though, not form) is a large one. The good news is that with the kit zoom you can easily treat your NEX-6 as a very good point-and-shoot as you learn more. To already have an itch for another lens after only three weeks is great (make sure you don’t catch Gear Acquisition Syndrome!), so here’s what I suggest:

        To really start to learn more about photography and all its facets (depth-of-field, balancing the exposure triangle, composition, etc.), you are really wanting to go with a prime over another zoom, and you are right on the money with your two choices—the 35mm Sony giving you a great “normal” (p.s. the review of it is up!) and the 50mm a short portrait field of view. You can’t go wrong with either one, but they are typically very different in function. Before you decide for sure which one you pick up, try shooting at only 35mm for a few days, then at 50mm (assuming you have the 16-50 powerzoom?) for another few days. Take a look at your shots, see which ones you like the best, as well as looking back to notice which focal length you actually enjoyed shooting at with. After that, you’ll have your answer. One quick note: I had the 50mm f/1.8 OSS once, but never got to shoot with it. Other reviews I have read talk about how it is similar in optical function to the 35mm f/1.8, meaning they are both great lenses.

        As to your second question, going the manual route, as I have done for the past year, is an equally valid option that will open up your photography to new and challenging levels (don’t lens people talk you into it too easily, accurately focusing a manual lens at wide apertures is very difficult at first). I wouldn’t recommend you consider manual lenses wholeheartedly if you are very used to autofocus. However, my advice if you DO choose to go with manual lenses first is to not get any lens wider than 50mm. Wider than that and the cost-to-benefit goes down compared to APS-C equivalents. Since wider lenses are harder to design for full-frame cameras, they cost more, even to this day. Something like the cheap but great 50mm f/1.8 Series-E could be a good starting off point, and if you find you really like manual focusing, you could soon after get an ever longer lens like the 105mm f/1.8 AI-s. Since the Series-E+quality adapter wouldn’t cost you over $100, you could quickly save up enough and hunt down a copy of that telephoto.

        Best of luck, shoot me back if you have any other questions.

  2. Matthew, I appreciated your review on the Nikon 50/1.8 E-Series lens. I was fortunate enough to purchase one, still brand new and unused today. I purchased it for use on my D800E as a night time wide field lens and then I saw your review about using it withe NEX-7, which I also have. May I ask what brand of adapter you purchased for Nikon to E-mount? It seems quality is all over the board with adapters, some reports of $250+ adapters having the same issues as the $20 variety. Thanks!

    • I’m glad I could help! And surprising you are using that cheapo lens on your pro DSLR. ;) However, it really is a great lens, and it’s great you are getting huge 36 MP files out of it.

      Adapters vary considerably, as you say. Generally, price is a determining factor as far as product consistency is concerned. If you want absolute top-quality performance and longevity, get the Novoflex, maybe the Metabones. If you want to save a bunch of money, the basic Fotodiox and RainbowImaging adapters are pretty good. However, if you want a nice balance between reliability and price, go with the Fotodiox PRO adapter. This is the one I have, which I have also reviewed. Unfortunately, Fotodiox has stopped manufacturing my particular version of the PRO. My version doesn’t have an aperture control ring (for any G lenses) but does have a tripod mount. The new PRO has an aperture control ring, but no tripod mount.

      Most lenses that are heavy-enough to need to be mounted on a tripod will have their own tripod mount anyway, so you should be good to go. Make sure to look at Amazon before Fotodiox’s website, they tend to overcharge on there.

      Happy Shooting. :)

    • Howdy… I purchased the Fotga adapter and I have to say I have no problems with it. It also has the aperture contol so you can use it with the G lens as well. It is pretty cheap to buy off ebay. Hope that helps.

  3. Hi Matthew,
    I have a Sony NEX 7, just update the firmware to v. 1.01, lens v.00 (?)
    Now the camera does not recognize non native Sony lens any more, as well my Bower 8mm e-mount lens.
    Hope that you may give me some helps to get around this.
    Many thanks in advance for your response.
    With kind regards

    Vuong

    • Hi Matthew,
      Since my NEX 7 was updated and sent in for grip repair, I forgot that the selection “Release w/o lens” had been set to off. :-) Sorry to bother you.
      Very knowledgeable mate, will rely on you.
      Thanks again.
      Have a great holidays.
      Cheers,
      Vuong

      • Glad you were able to figure it all out Vuong, the “release w/o lens” was the first thing I was going to advise. Take care. :)

  4. Matthew thanks for your great reply… I took your advice and spent half the day yesterday shooting 50mm and the other half shooting 35mm on my 16-50 power-zoom. After reviewing all my photos today, I realized I like and enjoy shooting 35mm… As such and after reading your great review on the Sony 35mm f/1.8 OSS I have decided to go with it instead of the Sony 50mm. I did like the results of 50mm shooting but have instead decided to either get a Nikon or Minolta 50mm with an adapter (in the future of course)… Thanks for your advice against Gear Acquisition Syndrome.

    I have a few other questions if you don’t mind… Do you know if there are any third party lens adapters that allow for auto focusing with NEX cameras? There are some sweet Minolta and Nikon lenses that I would like to purchase but would also like to use the auto-focus capabilities of the lenses… Also, do you use any specific websites to purchase your used lenses? And if so, what do you look for specifically when looking at the lenses? I’m worried I get ripped off with a broken lens… I’m a lens newbie after all!

    Once again thanks for your time. I once again commend you on your blog… As my interest in photography has increased I have searched through dozens of blogs and websites; yours is the first that I really like and have spent hours reading through… Hopefully you don’t mind if I ask you questions from time to time… I value your blog, opinion and suggestions.

    • 1. Great! Thanks for giving a chance on the “prime” feeling on your zoom before making a decision. Many people get the false assumption that having a prime automatically makes their images better. Though it improves them at the pixel level to a certain extent, if that photographer doesn’t like the focal length, they won’t shoot with it. One thing I’m sure you are going to love about the 35mm compared to your powerzoom is the increased control of depth-of-field. The difference between f/1.8 (35mm OSS) and f/4.5 (max aperture on your PZ at 35mm) is huge.
      2. There are a few adapters on the market. Metabones was the first with their smart adapters for Canon lenses, but they are pretty expensive. Other companies on eBay have cheaper adapters that claim autofocus, but I’m not sure about trusting an out-of-country vendor unless they perhaps have a video attached to the item showing it autofocusing a lens or two. Sony has their own LAEA1/LAEA2 adapters for a-mount lenses. First one is painfully slow, but the LAEA2 has a phase-detect translucent mirror built in. The AF speed is about as fast as an a55 (so I’ve read). But Nikon mount? I don’t know of any AF adapters off the top of my head. :( Keep in mind that with the exception of the LAEA2, these adapters are SLOWWWW to focus. The videos I see make me laugh as I realize I can focus manually faster!
      3. For almost all of my lens purchases/sales I use eBay. Their buyer protection policy is top-notch. In a nutshell, don’t look for perfection in these old lenses. Check these main things with the seller if he doesn’t mention it in description: is focus smooth? does the aperture ring click solidly? in what shape exactly are the elements, including the rear, front, and inner? That’s pretty much all you need to find out, as dings/scratches just come with age and don’t affect the optical quality. Geeze, most of my old lenses are scratched and dented everywhere, but the optics are (for the most part) spotless. That’s what counts. Always check past prices and current competition to make sure you aren’t overpaying/overbidding.
      4. Welcome! And I’m flattered to hear that. Though for the next few months posts will be relatively slim due to university classes, I’ll always try to post when I can and answer readers’ questions as they pop up. And keep the questions coming as you have them, just remember to shoot me an email if you have any personal photography questions you may not want posted to the site.

      • Hey Matthew… I ordered the Sony 35mm f/1.8 OSS! I cant wait to get it…. Also, big news!!! I made a huge jump and got 2 manual focus lenses… Those I’m actually more excited about than the Sony… I got a Minolta Rokkor PG 50mm f/1.4 lens and a Minolta Rokkor 58mm f/1.4 MC; both in excellent condition…. I ordered a Fotodiox Pro Minolta adapter from amazon…. I’m so excited and can’t wait till I get my lenses and the converter…. I have to learn how to take full advantage of the focus peaking setting on my NEX-6. Any recommendations on how to learn to take full advantage of this feature? Thanks so much for your input… I will send you a few emails once I get my legacy lenses… Can’t wait! Quick question if you don’t mind; what lens do you have that you would not be able to live without and why?

      • Victor! Great to hear man! I hope you enjoy that Sony, it’s really growing on me for a lot of general journalistic photo applications. :)

        I have read great things about those old Minolta lenses, and if my memory serves me right, the bokeh on that 58mm is pretty smooth. Once you nail focusing, manual lens shooting at these large apertures is a blast!

        But yes, nailing the art of manual focusing is a feat that does take time. One of the reasons I picked it up so quick on the NEX-7 was that I was already used to manually focusing on the d300 (with its awfully inaccurate focusing confirmation dot). If anything, it’s actually much EASIER on the NEX-7 than it is on the Nikon! But here’s what I recommend: if you shoot in RAW, set your creative style to Black and White (the preview will be B&W, but once it’s uploaded to the computer it’ll pop back in color again in LR4). Then, set peaking to low (if using EVF) or mid (if using LCD). Next, if you can set the AEL button to do the magnification, do that (I prefer “toggle”). Finally, set peaking color to yellow. This will have you best set up for accurate manual focus at the large apertures. But yes, I look forward to seeing your photographic excitement with the new camera and lens once everything comes together, definitely let me know!

        Finally, the lens that I couldn’t live without? Oh that’s a tough one. It’s a toss-up between my 105mm f/1.8, my 105mm f/2.8 Macro, and 50mm f/1.8 Series-E. The 105mm f/1.8 is my go-to portrait lens, and the Series-E 50mm is the perfect walk-around for me. However, I have done walk-arounds with the 105mm macro, and its maximum f/2.8 aperture does provide adequate depth-of-field control. The added ability to focus extremely close is also great; not to mention it is bitingly sharp stopped down a bit. In the end I would have to go with my 105mm macro. I’m going to review that one next hopefully. :)

  5. mat, ihave about 16 different lenses, to sale,if you want to buy any of them, e-mail me back with an idea of a locale to meet and check them out, and maybe also trade a couple things- i’m trying to find a ”k-type of bayonet adapter” for my old 35mm yashica… bring some pocket-change, i’m wanting to get rid of them…

    • Cool Lee, I might be interested in a few of those lenses, depending on what you have. Shoot me an email at mwdurr@bellsouth.net with the names of them and I’ll get back to you. On the adapter, I’m not really sure what exactly you’re looking for. If it’s an adapter for your NEX, take a look at Fotodiox’s or Metabones’ website for various adapters.

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