Dan's Photography Gear
Updated June 2014

"A man's life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions."
Luke 12:15 (NIV)

Dan with a camera.

On my other photography-related pages on this web site, I discuss, at length, the fact that photography is much more about seeing, feeling, expression, and composition than it is about cameras. When someone looks at my photos and says, "You must have a really nice camera," I feel like saying, "I'm glad you like my photos, but really, it's not the camera - I hope some of it is the photographer..."

Dan's old cameras. I call this my camera "accumulation," rather than a collection...

That said, here's what I currently use (as of June 2014):


  • Pentax K-5 II digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) camera -- This is my most recent primary digital camera - I got it in early 2014 (used...probably built in 2012). It's an supremely capable camera, which I discuss in much more detail on my New Camera Thoughts page (click here!) So far, having used it for 3 years (as of Winter 2017), it does everything I want a camera to do!

  • Pentax *ist DS2 digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) camera -- This was my primary digital camera for about 8 years - I got it in 2006, and it did the job for over 26,000 shots....but it's dead now.

  • Fujifilm Finepix A820 point-and-shoot camera -- A very basic, simple little digital camera, with great image quality and color rendition. Good for carrying around everywhere. I bought it used for $15.00! Can't complain about that...it produces 8 MP images, and has a built-in 4x zoom lens...nothing special, but it doesn't need to be.

  • Pentax MX 35mm film single-lens reflex (SLR) camera -- 35 years old (as of Winter 2017)...great camera, still works well, and can use almost all my old and new lenses, but I haven't used it for the last several years...because digital is just too much fun! A couple of years ago I lent it to Anne to use in her college photography class, and she shot black and white film, and processed and printed it herself! (Proud daddy...)

  • Dan's four main cameras: the Pentax K-5 II, Pentax *ist DS2 (now defunct),
    Fujifilm Finepix A820, and Pentax MX.


    The greatest advantage of an SLR camera is being able to use interchangeable lenses, and being able to see your subject through them. Everyone has different preferences in lenses, so by no means do I recommend this combination for anyone else...but these lenses work very well for me.

    The focal length descriptions below in parentheses are as seen with the Pentax digital cameras.

    Left to right,

    Front row:

    • MC-Zenitar 16mm f2.8 manual focus fisheye lens (VERY wide angle) (made in Russia!)
    • A very cheap 2x teleconverter (to extend the focal length of my telephoto lenses)

    Middle row: (these three are all about 35 years old...and still working great)

    • Pentax SMCP-M 75-150mm f4.0 manual focus zoom lens (medium to long telephoto)
    • Pentax SMCP-M 50mm f1.4 manual focus lens (short telephoto)
    • Pentax SMCP-M 28mm f2.8 manual focus lens (very slight wide angle) (I've sold this one)

    Back row:

    • Pentax SMCP-FA 80-320mm f4.5-5.6 autofocus zoom lens (medium telephoto to super telephoto)
    • Pentax SMCP-FA 24-90mm f3.5-4.5 autofocus zoom lens (slight wide angle to medium telephoto) (I've sold this one, too...and replaced it with a Tamron 18-200mm F3.5-6.3 XR Di II)
    • Pentax SMCP-DA 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 autofocus zoom lens (wide angle to short telephoto)

    Camera Bags Camera bags are items where everyone has a distinct personal preference, so consider your own needs and likes when you get one.

    • Lowepro Micro Trekker 200. A small camera backpack, perfect for carrying one or two cameras, four or five lenses, a flash, and other accessories. Small, well designed, affordable, well padded. Highly recommended if you like backpack-style camera bags. Photo below. (I had a short review published online at CamBags.com)

    • Lowepro Top Load Zoom Mini. A very small bag, that holds my digital SLR with a short lens. That's all. I like it for going hiking or camping...I wear it on a waist strap, and it keeps my hands and shoulders free.

    • Shoulder bag. I also have an old shoulder bag, that I bought about 30 years ago, that holds one camera, a couple of lenses, and a flash. I don't use it often, but sometimes it's just right.

    • Rubbermaid Roughneck 10 Gallon Storage Box. Well, o.k., it's not a camera bag, but it is where I store my photo gear when I'm not using it. Keeps it together, safe, and dry.

    Accessories There's always other stuff required when I'm doing my photography.

    • Sunpak 323 flash. A powerful flash attachment that automatically figures the exposure itself. Much less expensive than the name-brand Pentax flashes. I like that it flashes just once to take the photo...the little built-in flash in my camera gives a pre-flash, which more often than not just makes people blink in time to get caught with their eyes closed in the photo!

    • Tripods. I have 4 tripods, 3 of them very inexpensive, and the 4th still very affordable by tripod standards. I think I got my Targus TG-6660TR at Walmart, and I have a very old cheapie from my Dad, and a tiny collapsible tabletop tripod. Even my very nice,sturdy, Triopo tripod - with included ball head - was probably only $50.00.

    • Other stuff. Rechargeable batteries, chargers, memory cards, bracket for the flash, sensor cleaning supplies, a remote shutter release for use on the tripod...you know, just odds and ends.

    Some of Dan's stuff, packed for use in the Lowepro Micro Trekker bag. Lenses on left from top: 50mm, 16mm fisheye, and 18-55mm zoom. Center from top: Flash, Pentax DS2 camera with 24-90mm lens. Right: 80-320mm zoom.

    images © 2008, 2009, 2014 dan bullock
    permission granted for non-commercial use