Sometimes I chide myself for focusing on the wrong thing at the wrong time. I have to get funding before camera decisions decisions matter. At the same time, I need credibility as someone who has what it takes to get the job done. My blog pictures need to start looking better. So now is not too soon to make instant hand camera decisions.
I’ve spent some time now and then over a few months considering what to carry instead of the Nikon DSLR for expected stills while riding the trail. Once there is a recumbent, I may take the Nikon from time to time, but as a rule, it’s just too risky, and you know those amazing things will happen too fast on the days I have it, and there will be really glorious moments on the days don’t have it. For that quick access I’ve thought of a point and shoot or a better phone camera. I wasn’t sure. The phone cameras keep getting better and you’re more likely to have your phone handy when something happens quickly. My decision was partly made for me.
I love the Samsung Galaxy 8 Active that I had, but it was tired before I ran it through the washer and the dryer in my yoga pants pocket. The $9 a month I’ve been paying in insurance since it was new was going to get be a Galaxy 9 (not active). After the deductible, it was going to cost half the retail price to get a dated phone. The only reason I have the cell phone carrier that I do now is that it has good signal coverage in rural south Alabama where my mother lives.
I’ve mentioned my luddite tendencies, but that’s just because the budget is king in my life. If I had a more well funded lifestyle and didn’t avoid dealing with my current carrier like the pandemic, I’d update at least twice as often, probably. The current Galaxy phone is a S21 Plus. It seemed like the thing to have for a project that needs a good quickly accessible camera at the touch of a whim. A lot of the tech savvy people who participate in funding crowdsourced projects won’t relate to this, but buying the Galaxy S21 Ultra was a leap of faith, especially since the reviews said it wasn’t even as rugged as the S20. My last 2 phones were active models because I AM going to drop it. The temptation to get rid of the overpriced and useless insurance was tempting, but the phone was really expensive. I couldn’t quite make myself do it.
One of the things I love about this phone is that you can turn on “Make a RAW copy” (actually, I found out that I could have done that on my 8 Active too). That means that you can use the .jpgs for all those things that .jpgs are good for, but if you want to play around with RAW, you have that option. I haven’t bought the software for that yet. I’ll probably go with Lightroom because it is widely used, but I did see some software that was rated higher and was a one time fee, not subscription. Decisions! And, miles to go…
I hear that the next Galaxy will bring Active models back. It’s not the first time I waited through model after model to update, and finally hit critical mass just before the model that suited my uses better.