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Empire23’s Road Trip Review Madness!
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Empire23's Road Trip Review Madness!

Are you tired of reading all those boring reviews with their lab tests and numbers on performance, ergonomics and other flim-flam aspects of a product? Tired of reading about reviewers taking their cameras and equipment on trips sponsored by camera companies again and again and again? How about reviews where the reviewers take their stuff on easy-peasy holidays where the level of abuse isn't even enough to make a 3-year old cry? Well, I'm tired of writing them.

Seriously, there are things one cannot test in a lab, on a sponsored trip or by even by an intelligent smart person for that matter. One needs an idiot with a total disregard for general safety, social norms, equipment care and personal hygiene! That idiot, of course, is none other than yours truly! LOL!

Before we get to the nitty-gritty stuff, let's take a look at the trip and places I've visited and the amount of beating my stuff will take.


Locations & Damage Sustained

Departure Location : Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia
Departure Date : 27th of June, 2008
Return Date : 9th of July, 2008


Damage Sustained

Dandabah National Park, The Bunya Mountains

Exposure to cold, frost, moisture while trekking through the rain forest. General abuse with regular slips and falls along the Class 3 and 4 trails. Nature- and astro photography-orientated trip.

Cooloongatta Airport and Surfer's Paradise, The Gold Coast

Had to send a friend to the airport. Stuff thrown around in the trunk or kept in the back seat. Some items left in car while parked under the heat of the sun. Mostly street photography.

Brisbane Airport, Brisbane

Not much abuse here as I spent most of the time sleeping in the International Terminal's car park.

Maroochydore, Sunshine Coast

Items exposed to more moisture due to regular rain, and cold temperatures during the night. Shooting was mostly done at the coast with sea spray regularly attacking the equipment.

Mooloolaba, Sunshine Coast

Items generally exposed to deeper seawater as shooting was moved further away from the beach. I generally got real wet with most of my equipment soaked in seawater.

Eumundi Market, Eumundi, Along the Bruce Highway

Items generally exposed to heavy rain as it started raining when I arrived at the market. Crowded shooting area resulted in body damage for items.

Hervey Bay, Fraser Coast

Items exposed to sea shooting conditions again with sand damage becoming heavily evident. Short treks through rough trails at the beach. Most of the shooting was done at the beach.

Fraser Island, off the Queensland Coast

Fraser Island is a sand island, making sand infiltration of equipment even more evident. Jungle trekking on light trails with medium rainfall. I had a heavy equipment load, resulting in items getting tangled and scratched by one another. A stop at Lake McKenzie resulted in more contact with sand as the silica grains are finer there. Most of the shooting done were nature- and people-orientated.

Return to the Gold Coast

The only danger here was even more rain, and yes, drunk people, with the usual dings to items during street shooting. Stowage of equipment was rough at best and all items were chucked unsecured into the boot without padding or protection. The only exception was UV filters for the attached lenses and caps for the unattached lenses.

Return to Toowoomba

Home Sweet Home! I slept like a log.


Other Notes

• Transport came in the form of a rented Nissan Tiida from Europcar. God bless them for giving me the corporate rate!
• Accommodation was supplied by the YHA (Youth Hostel Association), generally shared.
• Accommodation also partially supplied by the Tiida. Yes, I slept in the car.
• Energy for driving was provided by a near-limitless supply of energy drinks and thoughts of untimely death by the road trains.


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Locations & Damage Sustained
Other Notes


Review Objectives
Tips For Travelling


Items On Review
Brief Description Of Items


The Canon EOS-1Ds Mark III Review
General Features - The Bad & Ugly


General Features - The Good & Awesome


Body & Ergonomics


Conclusion For The EOS-1Ds Mark III Review
Personal Note To Canon

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