February 28, 2015, 07:46:47 PM

Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.

Topics - bholliman

Pages: [1] 2
Software & Accessories / Photo Editing Laptop Recommendations
« on: January 13, 2015, 08:57:00 AM »
The laptop computer I use for most of my photo editing is nearing the end of its useful life.  It's over 5-years old now and starting to act erratically.  I recently reformatted the hard drive and re installed everything and its working better, but I am planning to replace it this year.

I'm looking for recommendations, my budget is roughly $3K.  I only have experience with Windows PC's, so I will probably be looking in that direction instead of a Mac.

Canon General / Canon warranty transferable?
« on: May 23, 2014, 09:26:32 AM »
I recently purchased a speedlite bundle from Adorama and plan to sell one or two of the new 600EX-RT's.  This will be the first time I've sold any new Canon equipment or even less than a year old.

Is the Canon warranty still valid for whoever buys the 600EX-RT's?  If so, I assume I will need to send the buyer a copy of my invoice.


Lenses / EF 400L f/5.6 vs. Tamron 150-600
« on: April 25, 2014, 06:06:36 PM »
I have around $1,200 in my new lens budget and am debating between these two lenses.  I'd like to purchase in the next month or so as we plan to take a vacation to Alaska in June and I really need a longer lens for wildlife shots.  After the AK vacation, I would use the lens primarily for wildlife closer to home (wild turkeys, bears, deer, maybe a few birds, etc.) and some limited outdoor sports like baseball and soccer.

My other tele lens is a 70-200 2.8 II and I have a 2xIII extender.  This lens is still really good even with the 2x extender, so maybe I should continue with this combo and save my money toward an 85 1.2 II?

From reading reviews and looking at the lens sharpness tool at TDP, it appears the 400 is sharper overall.  But it of course lacks the zooms flexibility and vibration control.  At this point, I'm leaning a little toward the 400 5.6 as I expect I would use the zoom primarily at 400+.


Lenses / Damaged 70-200 2.8 II, suggestions
« on: April 11, 2014, 12:40:48 PM »
A few days ago I dropped my 6D with 70-200 2.8 II mounted from about 2 feet onto a concrete surface.  The lens landed on the lens cap at a slight angle.  The lens cap was totally destroyed, I had to finish breaking it apart to remove it.  Once I got the cap off, I was relieved to find the front element was unbroken with only a couple of minor scratches (I assume from the lens cap).  Optically, the lens appears to be OK, but I really haven't had time to do much testing or perform AFMA with Focal.  Some quick AF testing shows its pretty close and test pictures appear to be clear and sharp.  I plan to take some brick wall pictures this weekend to look for evidence of decentering or other issues.

The one problem I've found so far the end is bent as shown in the attached pictures.  So, I'm unable to mount any ND or CPL filters, which is inconvenient.

The lens in insured for damage on our homeowners insurance account, but with $400 deductible.

Is this something Canon can repair?  Any idea about cost?  Anything else I should be concerned about?


Edit: the specs visible in the picture are dust, I gave the front element a good cleaning after the pictures were taken and some of what I thought were scratches came off, overall the front elements looks good

Lenses / Alaska Vacation Suggestions
« on: March 01, 2014, 11:15:47 AM »
I will be traveling with my wife and teen-aged son to Alaska for a two week vacation this summer.  This will be our first trip to the 48th state and we probably won't be able to return for a number of years, so we want to see as much as possible in the time we have.  We plan to fly into Fairbanks/Anchorage or maybe Juneau, rent a vehicle and drive from there. 

From what I've read, it appears most of the attractions are in the south eastern portion of the state between Fairbanks and Anchorage.  We would also like to see Juneau and Glacier Bay, but they seem to be a long way from the other tourist areas. Some of our "must see" attractions are: Denali NP/Mt. McKinley, the Kenai peninsula and Kenai Fords NP.  We would like to see as much wildlife (primarily bears, moose, elk, wolves, etc.) as possible.  We enjoy hiking and spending time outdoors.

This will be a family vacation first and photography expedition second.  My wife and son are pretty tolerant of my hobby, but I can't get too carried away with it and keep family harmony.

Regarding photography gear, my equipment list is below.  At this point I'm inclined to bring my 6D, 24-70, 70-200 and maybe the 100 Macro.  The Rokinon 14mm is another possibility.  Even with my 2x extender, I am worried that I won't have enough "reach" for some of the wildlife due to the vast distances.  I might consider renting a long tele lens for the trip.  I'll take my EOS-M and EOS adapter along as a back-up body and occasional use when I don't want to carry a heavy DSLR and lenses.


Lighting / Youngnuo??
« on: January 09, 2014, 09:55:21 PM »
I'm looking for suggestions for future speedlite purchases.  I own a 6D and the following speedlites:  90EX (primarily used as an optical trigger), 430EXII and 600EX-RT.  My plan has been to purchase additional 600EX's as funds become available until I have 3 or 4 to allow a great deal of flexibility with off-camera lighting.

But, after reading about the quality Youngnuo options, I'm beginning to wonder if I should go the third party route save money to use for additional lenses or an eventual camera upgrade.

Aside from a great price, what else do the Youngnuo flashes and triggers offer?  What can't they do that a 600EX-RT or ST-E3-RT can do?  Are these fully compatible with my Canon speedlites?

Photography Technique / Perspective correction
« on: December 28, 2013, 09:58:55 AM »
I took this shot this morning and unhappy with how it turned out.  I was shooting up a steep hill and no matter how I adjust the alignment it just looks wrong.  Either the trees are leaning, the building leaning.  Other than buying a TS-E lens, is there any way to make this shot look good?

I'm just learning long exposure photography.  Any way to get the moon properly exposed without severely underexposing the rest of the scene?  Any other suggestions for improvement are welcomed.

This was shot at 10 seconds, f/7.1, ISO 160, 28mm on 24-70 2.8 II lens on a 6D.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / NX300 AF vs. Canon DSLR's
« on: November 13, 2013, 12:43:01 PM »
Advertisements for the Samsung NX300 proclaim:

"If you demand performance there's a better option than DSLR"

"Faster than a DSLR - With 8.6 fps continuous shooting the NX300 lets you capture the moments within the moment with a series of brilliantly clear stills"

"Quicker Auto focus - A hybrid AF (auto focus) system combines phase and contrast detection for faster and more accurate auto focusing.

Is this true?  I always thought one of the main advantages of DSLR's over mirrorless cameras was auto focus.  How would a NX300 compare with a 7D, 70D, 5D3 or 1Dx in terms of auto focus performance for sports and BIF?  Anybody with experience with both?

Lenses / 85mm prime recommendation
« on: October 02, 2013, 09:59:18 PM »
I have been looking at different 85mm primes to use for portrait photography and some event work.  I have a 6D and my full kit is listed below. 

I'm considering the Canon 85 1.2 II, Canon 85mm 1.8 and Sigma 85mm 1.4 EX DG HSM.  I ruled out the Zeiss and Samyang 85's due to lack of AF.  Obviously, there is a huge price difference here.  I can afford the Canon 1.8 or Sigma now, but would have to save up a while for the Canon 1.2 II.

The Sigma looks to be optically as good as the Canon 85 1.2 II, at less than half the price.  But, the AF accuracy issues reported by TDP are concerning.  With a shallow DOF lens like this, poor AF accuracy means a poor keeper rate.  I have the 70-200 2.8 II and 135L, so already have some top tier portrait lenses, but I really love shallow DOF photography and 85mm is often a better focal length than 135mm indoors when space is limited.

Any suggestions and hands on experience from CR members?

Software & Accessories / Opteka MCH-25 Multi Carrier
« on: September 17, 2013, 07:27:23 AM »
Anybody have any experience with this DSLR carrying system?   I've been considering a Cotton Carrier, but saw this very similar set-up for 1/4 the cost.  User reviews at Amazon are generally good, but wondering if any CR forum users have any experience or comments?


I have a Black Rapid Curve strap that I normally use for carrying my 6D.  However for longer hikes having the camera bouncing against my hip can get kind of old.  Also, if the hiking trails go through any brush or tight spaces, having a camera on my side allows it to drag.  The chest mount seems to have some advantages.

Lenses / Stabilization for IS lenses?
« on: August 18, 2013, 08:57:58 AM »
Nasim Mansurov points out in the article at Photographylife.com that Nikon VR lenses need a few seconds to stabilize before vibration reduction is really effective.  He also indicates that VR is only beneficial when the shutter speed is less than the focal length of the lens.  It may actually hurt image sharpness otherwise.  His testing was with supertelephoto lenses, 300mm and up so this may or may not apply to shorter lenses.


Does anybody have any information if this is also true for Canon IS lenses?  I plan to do some testing myself at some point when time allows.

EOS-M / EF-M 18-55 f3.5-5.6 IS STM or EF-S 15-85 f3.5-5.6 IS USM
« on: July 09, 2013, 06:24:41 PM »
I am still waiting for my $299 EOS-M + 22/2 kit to arrive.  I also have a EF/EF-S lens mount coming from Amazon.

Just wondering if I should be looking to add the EF-M 18-55 lens or will my EF-S 15-85 do an equal or better job?  Of course the M lens is smaller and lighter, but the 15-85 is a pretty damned good lens.  Or maybe I should just see how it goes with just the 22/2 lens for awhile?  The EF-M 22 should be a good general purpose lens, but I can see needing more reach at times.

I mostly shoot landscapes, family/kids and portraits.  I will use my M as a backup and pocket camera for when I don't want to carry my 6D or 7D around. 

Lenses / Teleconverters/Extenders, Canon or Kenko?
« on: July 01, 2013, 10:40:09 AM »
I've been looking at purchasing a 1.4 and/or 2.0 extender.  I have just been considering the Canon EF 1.4X III and EF 2.0X III, but then read that the Kenko Pro TC's were just as good if not better.

Any insight?

Lenses / Kit for California trip
« on: June 30, 2013, 07:42:23 AM »
Next month my wife, 14-year old son and I are flying to California to spend two weeks.  The purpose of the trip is to attend my nieces wedding.  Following the wedding my extended family has rented a large home in Santa Barbara to have a week long reunion.  The final week of the trip will be visiting Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks with just my wife, son and a nephew for lots of hiking, camping and photography.

So, week one I'll be primarily enjoying the company of my extended family.  Most photography will be indoors or outdoor outings and activities, 95% people shots and portraits.  Week two will be entirely outdoors and mostly landscapes and my immediate family enjoying the parks.

I plan to take my 6D and S100 as a pocketable backup.  My lens choices are:

24 1.4 L (loan offered by a friend)
50 1.4
135 2.0 L
85 1.8
24-105 L
24-70 2.8 II (just purchased yesterday)
70-200 2.8 II
70-300 L (offered as a loan by a friend)
430EXII speedlight
90EX speedlight (used for on-camera optical master/fill)

I would like to limit myself to 2-4 lenses and the speedlites as the other luggage will be considerable.  This is a family trip first and a photography expedition second. When taking overnight hikes and camping, we will leave much of our luggage and gear locked in the rental vehicle, as we will need to travel light.  I'll probably only take 1 or possibly 2 lenses for the long hikes.

Lenses / 24-70mm upgrade?
« on: April 16, 2013, 10:46:24 PM »
I've been debating adding a f/2.8 standard zoom to my kit to use for lower light and indoor family and event photography.  I currently have the following lenses that I use on my Canon 6D:

24-105mm 4.0 L
35mm 1.4 L       
50mm 1.4
85mm 1.8       
135mm 2.0 L     
70-200mm 2.8 II L

I normally use my 35/50/85/135 primes for low light photography and they do a great job, but I find myself often wishing I had a fast standard zoom to avoid frequent lens changes or missing shots with the kids who are moving faster than I do.

I use the 24-105 for most outdoor and landscape shots.  Its a good lens, but after extensive use this winter, I'm a little disappointed with its IQ, distortion at the wide end and I don't think colors are rendered quite as well as my other L lenses.  So, if I buy a 24-70, It will probably become my primary landscape/outdoor lens as well and I may sell the 24-105 at some point.

Budget isn't a major consideration.  I have the money available for the Tamron lens now and can have the money for the Canon II in a month or two. 

Pages: [1] 2