What the Nikon D7500 is Missing

I recently tried using a Nikon D7500 and discoverd a couple of missing features.  They are not missing in the sense that they were supposed to be there.  They are missing in the sense that you would expect that the D7500 would be a ‘better’ camera than the D7000, D7100, etc that came before it.

  • The D7100 has a programmable interval timer, the D7500 does not.  This feature allows you to set the camera to take a specified number of images with a specified amount of time between the shots.  (For stop-motion video, event documentation, etc.)
  • The D7100 has two SD memory card slots, the D7500 only has one.  For casual users, this may not be a problem; but if you are serious, or professional, it is essential to have that second memory card slot to use as a backup.  Only once have I had a memory card fail me after a photo-session.  I sent the lifetime-guaranteed SD card to Delkin and they happily replaced it.  They asked me if I would like them to try to recover my images from the card (a Delkin service) and it felt so good to be able to say “no need for that, but thank you.  I have a backup card with all the images.”
  • The D7100 has the “Flash Commander” function, the D7500 does not.  This is Nikon’s method of using the camera’s built-in pop-up flash to control remote Nikon speedlights.  Whether in your home studio, or on location, the ability to adjust the output from your fill lights saves a lot of time and a lot of walking.  Perhaps they are trying to get us to buy the $599.95 SB-5000 flash?

The D7500 does have a tilting display.  For me that is a big “so what?” feature.

The D7500 does have some of those features that let it do things with your “phone”.  Another “so what?” feature that to use, you need to spend hundreds of dollars on a ‘phone’ to use.

If I were to use the D7500, I might have some positive things to say about it.  But due to these missing features, I don’t think I will ever pick one up again.

On a slightly related note;  I do experience excessive drooling when I think about the Nikon D850.

Biketographer Photographs the Garage Mahal

I have not been to a 2-wheel race in quite a while, but that’s ok.  I am currently quite busy in Jupiter, Florida, photographing Cobra’s Garage Mahal!

The garage part of Cobra’s Garage Mahal.  This is just a fraction of the museum.

Created from the love of Speedway, Jupiter resident Steve Luxton (Cobra) has an astonishing collection of speedway equipment, memorabilia, jackets, helmets, banners, and more.  We will likely not be able to finish our photographic project until late summer of this year.  Today I present just a few photos as a teaser of what is to come.

1970’s era helmet used in Speedway racing.  Long before tear-offs were invented, racers built their own flip visors.

Before full-face helmets, racers used various methods to prevent face damage that could be caused from the spray coming from the rear tire of the racer ahead of you.  The photo above shows a typical combination of 3/4 helmet, flip visor, goggles, and a ‘monkey face.’   Track surfaces might be dirt, shale, limestone, or coal-furnace ash, and coming at you at 100mph it would definitely sting!

Race jacket from the 1990 British Final

Steve, aka Cobra, grew up in Exeter, England, so naturally has a fondness for the Exeter Falcons Speedway Team.

Exeter Falcons

We will be photographing: helmets, race jackets, leathers / Kevlar race suits, speedway bikes, engines,  and much more.

More articles about Cobra’s Garage Mahal:

Biketographer is Newest Sponsor for Wight Warriors

It was announced today that Biketographer has become one of many sponsors of the British Speedway team, the Wight Warriors.  The Wight Warriors are based in the Isle of Wight, which is just off the south end of the main continent of the United Kingdom.

The Biketographer banner proudly displayed at Island Speedway, Isle of Wight

Biketographer first learned of this relatively new Speedway team from Cobra’s Garage Mahal.  Cobra began his support of the Wight Warriors in 2016.

The home track for the Wight Warriors is Island Speedway just south of the village of Ryde.

When you see video of the Wight Warriors in action at their home track, keep an eye out for the Biketographer banner!

From the Wight Warriors press release:

Speaking about the new sponsorship, Warriors Co-promoter Barry Bishop said, “I am delighted to welcome Alan Dewey and Biketographer to the club for the rest of 2017, the first of many seasons together I hope. Everyone knows the importance of sponsorship to our club, both financially and of a supportive nature, and we continue all year promoting the club, the Warrior Way and My First Skid to attract and be attractive to any company or individual that would like to get involved with the club. Last year we started international Team Warrior with Steve Luxton in Florida and I am delighted that we have now grown this family further with Biketographer. It’s amazing the reach our club, and its ethos of a fun filled family night out, has and I hope this will continue to grow further. It gives me great pleasure to welcome Biketographer to the ‘Wightlink’ Warriors 2017 sponsorship team.”

Biketographer is also on facebook.

Homestead Speedway CCS Motorcycle Racing May 7, 2017, Part 2

As promised, here is part 2 of CCS Motorcycle Racing at Homestead on May 7.  Most of these images are from the ‘afternoon’ races.   I only saw one small cloud in the sky all day, which means I went through a log of SPF 30 sunblock lotion.  Temperature was around 80 for the high of the day.

GTU Experts in turn 7 at Homestead Speedway CCS Motorcycle Races

GTU Experts in turn 7 at Homestead Speedway

Click Here to See More Photos and Read the Whole Article

Homestead Speedway CCS Motorcycle Racing May 7, 2017

I’d like to show you some images from the Championship Cup Series motorcycle races at Homestead Speedway May 7, 2017.

GTO Expert / Amateur split, turn 7 Homestead Speedway

Turn 7 right hander; GTO Expert / Amateur split

Because all motorcycles and riders have to go through tech inspection before being allowed on the track, the job of Tech Inspector guarantees you get to meet the prettiest racers.

I have a lot of photos from this race, so I will break this up into two blog postings; to see the rest of part 1
Click Here to See More Photos and Read the Whole Article

Best Batteries for Off Camera Flash (Speedlights)

If you are more than a ‘guy with camera’ you know how important off-camera flash is; especially on sunny, cloudless, days.  This article deals with battery performance for external camera flash units (‘speedlights’).

As an electronic engineer I have known for decades which type of battery to use in high-current devices.   This video by Maha Energy includes a 2 minute video which shows  you the difference.

I would like to point you to this 2 minute video on the Maha Energy website that shows you the astonishing performance benefit of NiMH battery over alkaline.  Not only do NiMH cells out perform alkaline type, they will pay for themselves and a good charger very quickly.

It is extremely important that you use a good charger with your rechargeable batteries.  If you have been experiencing crappy battery performance or battery life, it is probably the fault of your charger.  Most drugstore / fleamarket battery chargers charge for 14 hours whether the cell needs it or not.  A proper smart charger is the best thing for your rechargeable cells.

I am extremely satisfied with the Maha 8 cell charger and the 4 cell charger / analyzer.

What about lithium-ion battery technology?

Li-ion batteries are the choice for laptop computers and electric cars because they can pack so much energy into such a small space.   And that is exactly why they are dangerous… because they pack so much energy into such a small space and once they catch on fire, there is no way to extinguish the fire.   This is why it is getting more difficult every year to fly with devices which contain li-ion batteries.  It is already very difficult to ship them by “next day air” shipping services.

I expect someday soon we will see speedlight manufacturers jump on to the li-ion fad.  Be assured, I will not be buying one of them, it just will not be worth the expense and difficulty.

“When You Gotta Go” or “Where There’s a Will There’s a Way”

Sometimes, you are determined to go racing, but do not bother to use traditional methods.

Spotted on the infield at Daytona Internations Speedway, March 2017

I would never make fun of this guy.  You have heard that phrase about ‘glass houses’, right?  So let me show you how I often traveled to Moroso and Homestead to race in CCS Lightweight Sportsman Class.

1984 Yamaha RZ350 on its way to Moroso. Probably 1995.

Got to love Ancra Tie Downs.  One on each wheel secure the bike to the bumper, and more go from the handlebars, through both rear windows, and back out and to the rear frame.  It shook and wobbled with every start, stop, or bump.

I eventually bought a one axle enclosed trailer.  One time on the way back from an F.T.R. hare scramble in Okeechobee the bumper of this motorhome suddenly broke, almost completely off.  I was able to stop in town and take care of the situation.

Sons of Speed / Daughters of Speed New Smyrna Speedway

It was a tough decision; I woke up Saturday morning at Daytona International Speedway about 7 hours before the 76th Daytona 200 thinking about the antique / vintage races at New Smyrna Speedway 12 miles away.  Should I actually miss the Daytona 200 to go see a ‘new’ race?  I had no idea what it would be like.  But I did know that I wanted to see 100 year old bikes actually being used.

Of course the tires and wheels were ‘new’.  The frames were replicas.  But the spirit was 100% board track;  no brakes, no suspension, no gear box and no clutches to be found on the track. Click Here to See More Photos and Read the Whole Article