October 25, 2014, 11:32:23 AM

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Messages - Sporgon

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EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Pulling the trigger on a 6D
« on: Today at 07:58:22 AM »
I have both and my rather random thoughts would as follows:

The 6D is a really good fit in hand, better than the 5D/5DII. Although only slightly smaller it is more 'handy'.

The AF seems to be more precise than the 5D/5DII on all points.

The 6D uses some kind of colour metering whereas the 5DII doesn't. Haven't made my mind up on this yet, it behaves differently to the 5DII in some situation ( bright blue).

The overall 'IQ' is remarkable. There is a subtle improvement in low ISO, very good, film like tonal graduation and greater latitude at both ends of the EVA range. High ISO is astonishing and way ahead of the 5DII from about ISO 800 onwards. Overall I would put the 6D up against an A7r any day, there is not as much practical difference between 20 mp and 36 mp on FF as you may think, and the whole DR range on the 6D is very useable, making real world differences academic most of the time.

The 6D has a polymer top plate which feels identical to the mag alloy top of the 5DII but does get scuffed and scratched more easily as it is relatively soft.

Now the bad bits, at least for me. It uses the 'second tier' userface and ergonomics. The controls work fine per se, but moving between each is annoying, at least for me. However as you have sold your 5DII you won't have this issue. The top command wheel is very softly click stopped, and the rear command wheel is, well to be polite, disappointing after the 5DII. Also the flash compensation has to be done via the main menu although you can assign it to quick menu and then it is quite useable to be fair. So to summarise I'd say it's not as 'positive' on the controls as the 5DII series, but you get used to it and then it works fine.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: How to differentiate crop vs. FF
« on: October 22, 2014, 03:46:59 PM »
For canon, exposure for a 400mm 5.6 on a crop (640mm 5.6) is the SAME exposure as a 400mm 5.6 on a full frame. By using a crop sensor the aperture doesn't magically shrink. Just like taking the center section of a full frame image to give the same view as a crop sensor does not shrink the aperture.


That is because correct photographic exposure is dictated by the intensity of light, not volume. So you are of course right that the exposure for a given f stop lens will be ( more or less depending upon the efficiency of the lens) the same irrespective of sensor size or image circle, but when you begin talking about Achieving the same result on different formats you must deal with equivalence in all areas if you want to be correct - not just the 400 to 640 bit  ;)

Landscape / Re: Beautiful sunsets
« on: October 21, 2014, 04:30:39 PM »
Lovely picture Sporgon.

Many thanks Click ! The full panoramic sweeps across to the right taking in the castle walls and tower so I'll post that when finished.

Pricewatch Deals / Re: Deals: Some Canon Body & Lens Deals This Weekend
« on: October 19, 2014, 12:09:37 PM »
On the subject of lens prices it is interesting to note that in the UK the 24-70 f4 IS retailed price is now cheaper than the 24-105L retailed price.

Landscape / Re: Beautiful sunsets
« on: October 19, 2014, 10:14:18 AM »
Sun setting over the English seaside resort of Scarborough. Went up there to get a pano of the castle, this is a single frame shot taken from the castle looking out over North Bay

Technical Support / Re: Do I Need $ 634 US Dollars Light meter ?
« on: October 18, 2014, 04:07:08 PM »
Call me crazy, but if you are shooting digital, the need for an accurate meter is much less even in studio, because you can shoot, review, adjust, 10 times in 2 minutes. 
And you can probably pick up a used meter on ebay for $20-50 that will get you within a half stop of the high end meter you are looking at.
And last, even a super-duper high end meter is not going to give you a perfect exposure because we all have some personal taste in what we want to see. Are you shooting a scary Halloween scene, where you want it extra dark?  Toothpaste commercial, where it has to be extra brute etc? 

On the other hand is this the last piece of the puzzle in $100K studio where you intend to make a living or enjoy your retirement?  Is this going to provide the inspiration you need to shoot that piece of art that will hang in a gallery and earn a ton a $$?  Go for it.

You're crazy  ;)

I use an incident light meter a fair bit. Knowing where the 'correct' exposure is for a given lighting situation is really useful, at least for me. It also gives a clearer picture of where the histogram should sit in relation to the latitude of the camera.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: So what makes a camera a "pro" camera?
« on: October 17, 2014, 06:01:43 PM »
Canon didn't fit the 5DIII with a stainless steel bottom plate for 'consumers' - honestly. It not even been used by a Canon as a marketing feature, it's there because the base of pro cameras tend to get hammered, and a nice touch by Canon. Stainless is also a lot harder ( pun intended) to form than the likes of mag alloy.

Lenses / Re: Travel gear thoughts...
« on: October 16, 2014, 03:48:36 PM »
If you are used to having the IQ from the 70-200/2.8II I'm really surprised that you still have the 70-300 non-L. I've had the misfortune to try a couple of these, and although they were surprisingly good at 70 -100mm focal length, the rest was just dire, apart from the sort of spot meter size centre when stopped down to about f16.

The 70-300L, on the other hand is a really good lens, quite stunning in fact, pretty much as good as the 70-200/4 IS, just losing two thirds stop at 200, but gaining another 100 in reach.

Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: October 16, 2014, 03:14:41 PM »
Blue Jays and Peanuts - The Fall Fiesta

Every fall, the Blue Jays return. Noisy, obnoxious, and incredibly beautiful, these birds seem like they belong in the rainforests of Papua New Guinea with all their colorful friends. They are also incredibly intelligent birds, extremely clever in finding and rooting out food, and particularly sneaky bastards. ;) I've spent the last couple of years "training" the Blue Jays that frequent my yard. They come when I play back Blue Jay calls from my WP8 Sibley guide, come when I tap peanuts on my deck, and seem to enjoy the game of "Grab the peanut before a photograph is made!"

The Scrub Jays are a little easier to capture photos of, they are a little more aggressive with the Blue Jays, and tend to get all the peanuts. This year, I managed to lure in a couple Blues, and with some a clever setup, captured a number of wonderful shots. There is mere moments to frame, focus, and shoot before they are gone. The 5D III's slower frame rate makes getting the perfect moment a little more difficult, however it's larger frame makes for a much more pleasing background.

Canon EOS 5D Mark III
Canon EF 600mm f/4 L II
Gitzo GT3532LS w/ Jobu Pro 2 Gimbal

Here are some shots of the setup used to get these images:

While I was snapping shots of the setup, my quarry showed up again, and grabbed a little more bait. :D

Really nice shots, the pictures have a lovely quality to them  ;)

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: How to differentiate crop vs. FF
« on: October 16, 2014, 12:44:23 PM »
What I am saying is 'in same generation sensors the differences between a crop camera, and cropping a ff camera to get the same fov, especially appropriate in focal length limited situations, shows negligible difference in resolution even in ideal situations'. You can only test this with same (or very close) generation sensors, 6D and 7D MkII would be valid, 5D MkII and 7D would be valid, etc etc, if you don't have two same generation sensors you cannot test this and any 'illustrations' are entirely bogus, as all yours have been when we have danced this dance previously.

Baloney.  I specifically went out and proved you wrong by shooting intentionally at highly non-ideal settings, and still the difference is quite substantial.  Here it is again.  The differences are much larger using ideal settings.

Lee, I think another area you are going wrong with this comparison is that the 5D requires a fair amount of careful sharpening, whereas ( if I remember rightly back to 2004), the 20D did not. Bear in mind that back in the day those two cameras were aimed at different typical users. If you tried to optimise the 5D first I don't think there would be such a difference, and as the other guys have said, they are referring to current, or current-but-one generations cameras.

What your test shows is that the later generation is better. No surprise there.

EOS Bodies / Re: Patent: Variable Diffusion Focusing Screen
« on: October 16, 2014, 09:14:42 AM »
In spite of the naysayers, this will be a very useful technology for anyone shooting with a mix of fast primes and slower lenses, and innovative of Canon to work toward a dSLR implementation of the technology.

Yes, photographers like me. I use fast primes but slow ( 24 to 300 range ) zooms, principally because I don't want to weigh myself down with heavy zoom lenses. The different screen characteristics required are a nuisance. It would be pleasing to have both in one.

My only concern is that is is going to be done with activating LCD, which in itself may not give the crisp clear screen view of current S screens when in focus.

EOS Bodies / Re: AA Filter: Still Relevant, Marketing Ploy, or Obsolete?
« on: October 16, 2014, 05:19:02 AM »
Look at the Nyquist limit, or as we often refer to it in digital photography, Diffraction Limited Aperture (DLA), the more pixels we get the less aperture we have to show off those pixels. Already pixel density is such that f5.6 gives us the "sharpest" images, more pixels will demand ever better glass and the "sweet spot" will get lower and lower such that we will have less dof to display that resolution.

It isn't that diffraction will get worse, but at the moment we can resolve the diffraction above f8, which is the main reason the 36mp cameras don't actually return much better resolution figures than 24mp cameras, more mp will enable us to resolve the diffraction at apertures faster than f5.6. Once the diffraction limit (Nyquist limit) is hit then aliasing is no longer an issue and neither are AA filters. It will be a very long time before Nyquist limits are hit for very fast apertures.


Exactly. Unfortunately, many people impressed by megapixels do not understand physics of light (waves). I remember that I caused a little shitstorm once in DPR. I tried to explain that a D800 will not replace a good mid format camera for landscape shooting, as some people said, because it will lose all its really great detail resolution as soon as you use classic landscape f-stop ranges, say f=14 to 22 or even more, to achieve a maximum depth of field. I studied physics, so I know the theory, but that's not really needed, I could really see this effect in practice with my 7D. It has roughly about the same pixel size as the D800 and it produces sharpest results in the f = 5.6-7.1 range, at f >=10 it loses substantial detail, the images get visibly softer (with a sharp prime lens). The reason is diffraction blur, the image points grow into bigger and bigger blurred discs (so-called Airy discs) with more and more closed aperture. As soon as those discs are as big as a single pixel (at about f = 7.1 with the 7D's pixel pitch), the resolution of the image starts to degrade below the camera's native resolution.

So, in  landscape photography you will not get more optical information from a 36 MP FF sensor than from a, say, 20+X MP sensor when you select classic landscape apertures. That's the reason why I am happy with my "22 MP only" 5D3 and why I'd switch to mid format when I decided to focus seriously on landscape photography. You can't fight the basic laws of physics.

Btw, at least in Germany the pro photographer's classic education includes learning about diffraction blur, classic photog textbooks explain this quite important effect. We even have a German name for this issue, it is called "foerderliche Blende" (something like "beneficial aperture", never found a proper English translation).

f14 to 22 might be 'normal landscape apertures' on a large format camera, but that would generally be an unnecessarily small aperture on a FF camera. Also on a Canon you can use a tilt lens to achieve thorough Dof at a wider aperture, but generally I agree with what you are saying. If someone really has a need to go beyond mid twenties in mp then they should really be looking at a larger format. In fact with landscape pictures the larger the format the better because you are recording tiny detail that is generally a long way from the camera.


At a recent wedding held in a wonderful, ancient Saxon church ( part of it from about 980 AD) the vicar, who was extremely strict about photography in the church, allowed me, after suitable arm twisting, to shoot from one of the chapels in the sacrestry, "as long as there was no flash and no sound whatsoever". Using a 5D I just shot that part in live view, totally silent.

1/1600 flash. Wow ! I just use HSS.

Ten frames per second ? OK I'll have to get a 7DII ( which doesn't cost $3300)

Dust on the sensor ? Now that really is stretching the boundaries of reasons to change systems.

So to conclude this is one of the weaker lists of reasons that I have seen for changing.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: So what makes a camera a "pro" camera?
« on: October 15, 2014, 09:09:57 AM »
It has to be able to take that abuse and keep working, same for lenses. It also has to function satisfactorily under stressful, rushed situations.

Is a Hasselblad MFD a "pro" camera?  Does it meet your above criteria?  If the answer the first is yes, and to the second is no, then your criteria may be indicative, but are not definitive.

The Hasseldlad MFD most definitely meets that criteria.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: So what makes a camera a "pro" camera?
« on: October 15, 2014, 07:30:31 AM »
Yes it is fair to say that any camera that is being used by a real professional is a pro grade camera, whatever it is.

Not sure if this has been mentioned before, but by the sounds of it I don't think many here realise the abuse that a real pros gear has to take, especially if it is portable stuff like a dslr and lenses. It has to be able to take that abuse and keep working, same for lenses. It also has to function satisfactorily under stressful, rushed situations. Take the 650D for example, a camera I had for a short while. The rear controls were so doll-like I couldn't feel them half the time. Take the 6Ds top command wheel, it's so softly clicked I can't feel it when I'm having to work fast. The rear wheel is even worse. What about lenses that have elements glued in place with three spots of glue like the Tamron 24-70. Just recently I had put the camera plus 24-105L on the dashboard in a Land Rover, had to pull out really quick in traffic and the camera shot off backwards and crashed into the footwell. I didn't even have to consider any damage. A friend of mine in Australia had a 1DII + 70-200 knocked over on a full height tripod onto a Tarmac pavement; no issues.

So if you're going to baby your gear you can get away with almost any camera that offers full control, esthetic satisfaction apart, and not withstanding unforeseen accidents, but gear that must keep working to keep paying the photographer has to be more robust.

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