CNET reported today that:
If you're heading to Beijing (or are already there) for the Olympics, take note that the Beijing Organizing Committee has imposed bans on several items, one of which is "professional camera equipment." Unless you have official press credentials, we suggest you just bring your point-and-shoot to the games.According to the site, Olympic officials haven’t specified what they mean by “professional camera equipment,” although CNET says there is speculation that “the ban refers to SLRs with big lenses that could block other spectators' views.”
I hope that’s the case. But my guess is you’ll have a hard time bringing any DSLR to the games.
That’s too bad. Imagine getting to go to the games (imagine what it would cost!) and then you can’t bring the equipment that will allow you to capture them. For some of us, taking pictures at the event is infinitely more rewarding than“just” watching it. Capturing the moment is better than seeing it.
Granted, some equipment, like tripods and truly cannon-like (not “Canon-like”) lenses might be unwieldy in large crowds and stadiums, but there are plenty of compact long-zoom lenses that could get the job done without being too intrusive.
I hope the guards are liberal in letting cameras through, but China is not a country known for its leniency. (Did you hear they’re censoring the internet for journalists attending the games? Wow).
Maybe you could get away with bringing something like a Canon G9, with it’s 6X zoom, good low-light performance and ability to shoot in RAW. Canon even makes an accessory lens for it that gets great reviews on Amazon and that gives you the (semi) equivalent of a 420mm lens. And it’s tiny enough to fit in your pocket.
And if you can afford to go to the Beijing Olympics, feel free to buy me one, too!