The Gear

I generally don’t post details of the cameras and lenses that I have used, either as captions or alongside photographs - it’s not that it's a secret, more that I am very much of the opinion that for many situations, the camera doesn’t matter.

Having said that, I do enjoy the technical and equipment side of photography too and certainly have an interest in new technology and developments. I get occasional queries on what was used for specific images so I have decided to confine an equipment list to this page.

The list of every camera I have used would not serve much purpose, so I have listed those which I have had for some time or used extensively, with some brief comments. Keep in mind most of my photography is street or people and travel photography.

Film Cameras

Nikon F3 - my favourite film SLR, though not without quirks - handles beautifully, solid as a rock
Nikon F5 - monster film SLR, capable and reliable
Nikon FE - my remaining film SLR for those times I have to remind myself how good Ilford HP5+ is!
Leica M3 - best viewfinder of all time - stripped back to the basics, wonderful with a 50mm lens - currently my most used film camera 
Leica MP - at the time I described it as the perfect camera, whilst the M3 has the "better" viewfinder, the lesser magnification and additional framelines make the MP the more flexible camera - the last of my regular use film cameras before moving to digital - still missed

Digital Cameras

Nikon D90 - terrific APS-C DSLR, for its time it punched above its weight
Nikon D750 - my first full frame DSLR and the one that finally convinced me to give up film. Outstanding image quality for its price, probably the best ergonomics of any camera I have handled.
Leica X typ 113 - APS-C fixed lens camera. Outstanding image quality but hampered by lack of built in viewfinder and now showing its age in speed.
Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II - was my most used camera and possibly still by far the most versatile camera system I have had. Perhaps an unusual choice for street photography, I describe why it fits for me here. I would probably still recommend this or the Mark III as the best all round camera body if you want to use a single system only.
Nikon Z 6 - outstanding ergonomics make this a real pleasure to use. When size is not important, in low light and where quality is the primary concern, I choose the Nikon Z 6 over the Olympus - I compare them here. They are complementary, not competing cameras in my opinion.
Fujifilm X100V - A recent addition, I look at this as an upgraded Leica X typ 113 and replaces the Olympus for my use case. The size, weather sealing and outstanding optical viewfinder make this a unique camera. Reviewed here.


Nikon 20mm f/3.5 AI-S - good value, makes for a fun lens for street photography, even on modern DSLRs
Nikon 24mm f/2.8 AI-S - another good value choice, best with film but holds up well with more modern cameras
Nikon AF-S 24-120 f/4 G ED VR - very good travel lens - "goldilocks" in terms of best compromise of weight, speed, price, quality
Zeiss Milvus 35mm f/2 - in my opinion the absolute best 35mm lens for Nikon F mount
Leica Summicron 50mm (various from v2 rigid to later ‘M’ versions) - can’t really go wrong with any. The M lenses make you wonder why other "full frame" lenses are so big.
Leica Summarit-M 50mm f/2.4 - small, light, super lens, some dislike the screw on hood, I love it! (Picture at foot of this page)
Leica 35mm v4 and ASPH - both superb, the ASPH is a benchmark for quality, the v4 simply beautiful
Olympus prime lenses - 12mm f/2, 17mm f/1.8, 17mm f/1.2 PRO, 25mm f/1.8, 45mm f/1.8 - the strength of the M43 system for me is the small, light, sharp primes, although let down a little by the 17mm f/1.8, they are generally superb and usable wide open.
Olympus 12-40 f/2.8 Pro - whilst I generally prefer the primes, this is useful as a travel lens and in bad weather. Excellent build and handling and compromises very little on image quality and only about a stop on speed. (Used below).
Nikkor Z 24mm f/1.8 S - a recent addition, but seems absolutely at the level of the other Z primes - optically excellent.
Nikkor Z 35mm f/1.8 S - great performance from this weather sealed new lens from Nikon, likely their best 35mm to date.
Nikkor Z 50mm f/1.8 S - a truly outstanding 50mm lens, superb quality.


Billingham bags - I have tried lots of bags but keep coming back to a Hadley Pro and Hadley Small, comfy to carry, practical to use and very durable
Atlas Athlete pack - terrific backpack - best of both worlds as a photography pack and hiking pack, see this article.
Op-Tech and Black Rapid straps - see this article, I prefer a simple wrist strap or over shoulder sling
Lee Seven5 Filters - I rarely do landscape photography but a few ND and ND grad filters are useful for the times I do. The Lee Seven5 system is compact and super quality and allows me to use the smallest 37mm thread on my Olympus 45mm f1.8 up to the 62mm thread on my 12-40 f2.8. (Used below).

What's Missing?

I have bought and sold a number of Nikon bodies, from F2AS, Nikkormat to D200 with several in between - all good in their own ways but they were not the most memorable for me. It costs little or nothing to try out older film bodies now as they are cheap to buy and easy to resell.
Longer lenses - I have had some good long lenses, some of the longer older Leica lenses, the 90s and 135s, are actually very good value and excellent quality, but the sort of photography I do rarely requires them, so most were little used.
Medium format - I used a few 120 film cameras including a Bronica system for a while, but never really got pleasure from using them.
A box full of film developing equipment in the loft - I can’t bring myself to throw this out, I see myself doing my own black and white developing again in the future!

Using Format