Arrival of a brilliant new toy.

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Last week I took delivery of a shiny, new, whistles-and-bells Nikon D800 camera.

It has been bought to replace my ageing D2X, which has given sterling service for the past seven years. The old guy has been carted all over the planet and got on with the job of showing the world as I see it with nary a problem. It has shrugged off the freezing temperatures of high-altitude mountains; hot, sandy deserts; dense, humid jungles; and salt-laden oceans. No bother. The only ‘amendment’ I have had to make is to apply zinc-oxide tape to hold the card door closed (both screws were lost somewhere on a the trek up to Makalu base camp in the Nepali Himalayas).

My old camera has aged with me – kind of fits in with the way I travel. I would like to think that, like me, it could still do the job. Sad to say though, technology, as well as time, has overtaken it. The sensor is too small for one thing and strangely it wasn’t built with a camera-mounted flash.

I have been playing with the new toy the past couple of days and am already blown away with what it can do. The quality oozes from the 36 million mega-pixels (the most of any DSLR, apparently), it carries out all sorts of smart functions and can shoot high definition video to boot. The instruction manual is 448 pages long (before you ask, that is 448 pages purely in English) and will take me a month of Sundays to trawl through.

Annoyingly I have found out that my three year old Mac doesn’t support the NEF/RAW files the new camera creates. Bugger. Nothing, it would seem, is future-proof.

I’m sure it will help with my work, but I feel that the new pup will take a bit of getting used to. I’ve had the old guy a long while and know it’s nuances and foibles; I’m not scared of it getting bashed around a bit. This shiny new pup though, well….

Time to find out if an old dog can learn new tricks.