Tuesday, December 30, 2008

My Digital Conversion (Part II): "Film" is Cheap

I was working through how much storage I would need over a 2 month trip in Australia. My standard is about 30 rolls for a 3 week trip (10 rolls a week). So an 8 week trip would be 80 rolls of film, or 2880 exposures. The Canon 5D Mk II generates 25 MB images per shot, so that's 72GB.

17Photo.com is selling Sandisk Extreme III 16GB cards at $70 a pop after rebate. (I chose this card as opposed to the Extreme IV because I'm largely a landscape shooter, so I'll only need something fast enough for the typical movie) To get it all in Compact Flash I'd need 5 of those cards, or $350 worth of cards. But I don't even need to spend that much, since I can get a 250GB Wolverine Pic-Pac for $145 or so. That should cover even the worst circumstances (i.e., I go crazy and shoot twice as much as I do because digital is cheap) By contrast, to get 80 rolls of Velvia exposed and processed would cost $800. And of course, this is a one-time expenditure that will likely never have to be spent again. And of course, the weight/space savings over 80 rolls of Fuji Velvia is substantial.

What else am I getting for my camera? A circular polarizer, a UV filter (for when I'm on boats), Singh-Ray ND grad filters (2 stop and 3 stop) --- I've been using the Hi-tech filters, but I want something with a harder stop, 77mm adapter ring for the Cokin "P" system, the wide-angle Cokin "P" filter holder. That's turning out to cost me more than the storage for the camera.
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