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Nikon Owner Issue 12

Letters to the Editor

Technical Helpline

I wanted to say a HUGE thank you for getting back to me so quickly. I am just about to leave and so it was wonderful timing. I am continually thrilled that I became a subscriber of Nikon Owner ­– it is fantastic.

Many, many thanks,

E-mail: Georgina Cranston

A Day at Nikon House

Just wanted to say how much I enjoyed the day on Saturday; I was a little apprehensive as a very amateur photographer in what I assumed would be very elevated company. I need not have worried, it was a great day and I learnt a lot. John McDonald (head of training Nikon U.K. Ltd.) was excellent and certainly knew his stuff. Simon Stafford’s session in the afternoon made it all look so easy.

Many thanks.

E-mail: Peter Kolbert

News from across the seas

I received the last two magazines – fantastic! They immediately attracted attention when I had them on my desk. I literally had to rip them out of people’s hands with promises that I let them read them next!

E-mail: Theresa Dunedain, Caribbean

Reviewing the Reviewer

I’ve just had a detailed read through the latest edition of Nikon Owner number XI.

I’ve had the feeling that the magazine was a little bit too much in the National Geographic mould with a bit too much of ‘celebrity following’, so the continuation of how Star Wars was filmed AND a full-length review was much appreciated (AF-S Nikkor 24-120mm f/3.5-5.6G ED).

What an excellent review!

It is easy to review something that is state-of-the-art and infinitely desirable, but reviewing something that is disappointing is much more difficult.

Simon has clearly told it as it is. One-marque* magazines can easily fall into sycophancy and try to gloss over the failings of anything of the revered make. It’s also easy to write a slagging-off piece about something you do not like, or from a maker you dislike and to sprinkle unfavourable adjectives everywhere.

Simon has not had the services of an optical bench with test charts, travelling microscopes, microdensitometers** and all the ‘doodads’, but he’s done a superb job of using magnified crops from natural scenes to illustrate his points and make them clear to all. The areas that he is critical of have been presented objectively and without prejudicial language.

In trying to decide which reviewers to take most seriously, you don’t get much help from reading their favourable reviews. Good reviewers only really show their mettle in how they handle something that has problems.

Our latest magazine may have disqualified a lens from our Christmas lists, but it has just properly qualified a reviewer.

Definitely a net win. Thanks to all involved.

David Stockton

*a brand or make of a product

**Microdensitometers: an instrument for determining optical or photographic density of very small areas of a photographic film or plate.

Reviewing the Reviewer – My Opinion

As an owner of the aforementioned lens (AF-S Nikkor 24-120mm f/3.5-5.6G ED), I have to say I am very happy with it. It may not be in the same league as my 28-70mm f/2.8D AF-S ED Zoom-Nikkor but at a fraction of the price it has its place.

I don’t disagree with Simon’s review, but you do have to look at your own requirements and decide for yourself. I’d definitely buy one again if I needed to, but then I’m also in the market for the 17-55mm f/2.8G DX AF-S IF-ED Zoom-Nikkor.

Neil Ford

Kitchen Sink Drama

I sat down at my kitchen table this morning to sort through the mail. There are, of course, the predictable bills. Inevitably, there are also garishly coloured flyers speaking highly of the gastronomic delights of the local Pizza company who will deliver to my door, plus letters from Estate Agents, a sprinkling of business cards from plumbers, painters & decorators, mini cabs and all the other barbarians that seem to lurk outside the gates of my home. I lift up a copy of a magazine and a torrent of inserts cascade all over the floor. Groaning inwardly I reach for the final item that to my great surprise, I discover, is the latest issue of Nikon Owner.

I sit at last, magazine open on the kitchen table with a cup of black coffee, the aroma of which fills the room, adding to my reading pleasure. So I thought I should write and say “thank you” to Simon Stafford for his technical reviews and “thank you” for Heather Angel’s delightful and immensely practical approach to her work, which are evident in every line of her articles. Heather’s worldwide reputation as one of the greats of wildlife and natural history photography is entirely justified. The other thing I enjoyed in this issue was Gillian Greenwood’s article coupled with David Suchet’s images of Egypt on the film set of Death on the Nile, which were perfectly complementary. As for the cover – magnificent!

In closing I must say that seeing the photographs taken at your Ghostly Christmas Dinner 2003 I really wish I had taken the time to attend. Can I ask if you will be arranging another Christmas Dinner this year?

David Behrens

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