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Storage for images while on vacation


Collette
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I'm going on vacation and will be taking my camera with me (Mexico). Any suggestions with what to use to move images from the SD to storage? I am bringing my craptop for my hubby for his business continuity (crappy purchase in 2009). I know there are external hdd options to transfer directly from one storage to another without a computer. Any suggestions? Also... would you bring your camera to Mexico? D810, Sigma Art 35 mm, might take the kit lens from my D50 70 - 300 mm 3.5 - 5.6. Thanks for any tips, suggestions. Cheers

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How long is your trip? Will you be near civilization?

Those CF / SD cards to a Storage Device have really fallen out of popularity. The ones that are around tend to be quite expensive and do not have their own power-source. You would have to hook it up to your laptop in order to use it. So in that case I'd just get a 1TB EHD and use a card reader. About $115-ish vs. over $1000.

Honestly, I'd get a 128GB CF Card and a 256GB SDXC card. That's 384GB right there for $202.00. You could even purchase two of those cards to for a total of $404 and that's 768GB worth of card space, which is decent for a D810. So unless you are really traveling for months at a time, I wouldn't bother with a Card to EHD type of thing. For traveling, I'd just use this Lexar Card Reader since it pops up and down, protecting the slots.

Now before you go, "OMG!! All my images on those large cards? That's too many photos on just one card!! Shouldn't I have a bunch of little cards? Everything that I've read and all my photographer friends say to use a bunch of cards!" 

Not today. In reality, the most vulnerable time is when you insert and remove the card from the camera. That's when things can go wrong. The other thing that corrupts cards is deleting images in camera. If you have say 500 photos with spots of deleted photos here and there, when the camera goes to write in those areas and they don't exactly fit, that's how you get purple/pink-streaky corrupted images. I've come to find out that the worst thing you can do is delete in-camera. So says the guy who invented the first image data-recovery software, which is what Sandisk uses to this day, and I believe them. Even though I've personally never had a problem deleting in-camera. I don't do it anymore. Moreover, keeping track of a bunch of cards while on vacation is a real PITA. I'd rather keep track of 4 cards instead of 8, 10, or more. Plus there is that whole theft-thing when traveling and being a target when you are distracted fiddling with your camera.

I'd also invest in a few extra batteries, possibly even investing into the D810 Grip, purchase a BL-5 Adapter and use the Nikon EN-EL18a Battery of course you'll need the MH-26aAK charger. That said, going down this path is quite expensive. The whole point of doing this is to be as portable as possible and not having to rely on charging your stuff. 

As for lenses, the Non-VR 70-300 is one of Nikon's worst lenses. Re-sellers can't give those suckers away. Now if it's the 70-300 VR, that's a different story. (A red VR should be stamped onto the side of the lens.) That lens is MUCH BETTER than the Non-VR version. If it's the Non-VR 70-300, I would just leave it home. Seriously. The D810 and those 36MP need the best glass. They want to be fed with the best light-photons, and that takes high-quality lenses.

For traveling, your Sigma 35mm is "fine," but it's going to give you images that remind you of your "Street Photographer" look. If that's what you are going for, great. If you are looking for a zoom, I'd seriously rent a Nikon 24-70 lens. I took a trip to Bar Harbor Maine this past year, and I used my 14-24 a lot, but honestly, I could have gotten away with just using my 24-70. If you want a little more reach, than look at renting the Nikon 24-120 f/4 VR, which is also a nice lens and I believe is the "kit" lens that comes with the D810. Make no mistake, the 24-120 VR is more of a mid-grade professional lens, and isn't to be confused with a basic 18-55 that you get in the consumer bodies.

So bottom line: One camera, one lens, two-sets of cards, enough batteries to cover you days at a time, and just enjoy yourself. I've learned the hard way of when schlepping gear around that it's just more of a hassle than anything. Especially if you aren't going to do anything with these photos, meaning they aren't going to be in a travel magazine or used commercially. Plus, the fact your spouse won't be happy; believe me, getting sucked into "Photography Land where Brian loses all sense of space & time..." makes for a very grumpy girlfriend

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Thanks Brian. I did order another battery and we are staying in a resort.  Will be bringing the craptop and use it for storage. Honestly do understand that I don't want to spend all my time taking photos. I'm checking to see if renting a lens for 16 days is an option from where I live.

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Oh, I wasn't picking on you personally, I was really referring to myself and my own experiences; well, maybe my girlfriend's experiences and they haven't been that pleasant when I get sucked into the camera while on vacation. LOL!! 

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I didn't think you were picking on me. I also live in Northern British Columbia, Canada so those rental options are out for me. There are a few in Vancouver but I won't have time to get to them both ends of my trip. Such is life. The 24-70 is next on my list as my vacation lens.

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Followup. Brought my D810 and the Sigma Art 35mm lens. Won the lottery IMO with my hubby telling me I need to get some zoom lenses... 24 - 70mm and the 70-200 mm lenses. Approval to purchase! I really love my 35mm lens but for vacations, I think the zoom lenses are the way to go.

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