April 20, 2014, 04:54:17 AM

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Topics - Rienzphotoz

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Third Party Manufacturers / New Curved Sensor Tech by Sony
« on: April 04, 2014, 02:25:59 AM »
Sonyalpharumors reports the following interesting info:

If you follow SAR closely you will remember I posted two great Sony patents: One about a Curved Sony sensor tech and one about a 35mm f/1.8 Full Frame lens designed for curved sensor. Now, usually it takes years before a patented idea will be materialized in a real product. But you know, Sony cannot afford to avoid to sit down and stay still. They have to make real inovative products in order to catch up with the big two Canon and Nikon.

And the good news is that this is no more a dream! Image sensor World reports a great news. Sony will officially present their curved sensor technology at the Technology Symposium! This is what Sony writes about the presentation they are going to make:

We realized an ultimately advanced imaging system that comprises a curved, back-illuminated CMOS image sensor (BIS) and integrated lens which doubles the sensitivity at the edge of the image circle and increases the sensitivity at the center of the image circle by a factor of 1.4 with one-fifth lower dark current than that of a planar BIS. Because the lens field curvature aberration was overcome in principle by the curved sensor itself, the curved BIS enables higher system sensitivity through design of a brighter lens with a smaller F number than is possible with a planar BIS. At the same time, we controlled the tensile stress of the BIS chip to produce a curved shape that widens the energy band-gap to obtain a lower dark current. The curved CIS can be applied to an ultimately advanced imaging system that is validated by the evolution of the animal eye in Nature.

Now combine that sensor tech with a small and fast 35mm f/1.8 lens and you will get a superb new RX2 camera! More compact, faster and of much higher image quality than the current RX1-RX1R. And we also can hope to see an interchangeable mount camera with such a sensor in near future too!

I cannot wait to get some rumors about the RX2. If it has that kind of curved sensor tech I am sure SAR readers will be exctided about this. Or not?

Third Party Manufacturers / How to Annoy a Photography Snob
« on: April 02, 2014, 02:56:20 PM »
Thought some of you might like it ... I like No.10
How to Annoy a Photography Snob - Top 10! Small | Large

I came across these LIFX light bulbs and wondered if any CR members have tried it for photogrpahy ... from what I saw in the youtube videos (posted below), I can think of many creative possibilities for photography ... did any of you use it? and if yes what is your opinion?
Thanks in advance
LIFX The light bulb reinvented Small | Large

LIFX Lightbulb - Unboxing Installation & Review Small | Large

Third Party Manufacturers / Sony Medium Format Camera
« on: March 25, 2014, 09:41:45 AM »
According to Sonyalpharumors, Sony may announce a Medium Format camera ... that' interesting ... they are also running a vote if one would buy a Sony Medium Format Camera if it came with a fixed lens (like Sony RX1) for $5000 ... I voted No, but would you buy a $5000 RX camera with fixed lens and Sony's new medium format sensor?


Thought of starting this thread to talk about inexpensive non-electronic replacement accessories (as opposed to the expensive OEM accessories e.g. tripod collars, lens hoods, lens caps etc etc etc) that make our camera gear a bit more productive or just look cool. I thought of this as I just received 2 new White lens hoods for my EF 70-200 f/2.8 L IS II & EF 10--400 L IS lenses ... here are a few pics ... I already have the original black lens hoods that came with the lenses, but I kinda prefer the white hoods, that are found on the higher end Canon L lenses ... this is my "poor man's attempt" of trying to make my 70-200 & 100-400 lenses look like "limited/special edition" ones  ;D
I paid US$ 29 for both of them ... while the original Canon versions cost around US$ 93 ... me thinks the cheaper white ones look cooler.

EDIT: I removed the non-electronic part as several members have already posted some good electronic alternatives, so I thought why limit this thread only to non-electronic accessories ... post whatever caught your fancy.

Sonalpharumors reports the following rumor with a SR5 rating (i.e. "almost certainly correct!")

(SR5) New Full Frame E-mount cameras to be launched within the next 5-6 months (likely at Photokina).
I can confirm via multiple trusted sources that Sony will launch new Full Frame E-mount cameras within the next 5-6 months. I guess it means they will be launched right before the Photokina September show. NONE(!) of them will be a replacement of the current A7 and A7r models. All we know for sure about these new models is that they will have an advanced hybrid AF system similar to what we got inside the newly announced Sony A6000.

The surprises: I can already tell you that there will be many more cameras in the months to come (RX and Alpha and E-mount). I am working on those rumors right now….be patient ;)


That is a very interesting development, coz the a6000 auto focus system has received a lot of praise from pretty much every photographer who got their hands on it ... and from what I've seen on youtube videos, it does seem to be awesome ... and to have it on a full frame camera (which might be priced modestly) is even more awesome ... exciting times.

Over at Nikonrumors they posted this:

The Tokyo district court ordered Sigma to pay 1.5 billion JPY (around 14.5 million dollars) compensation to Nikon as a result of the patent infringement case for lenses with VR technology that was filed back in 2011. The lawsuit was based on six Sigma lenses with image stabilization technology. Initially Nikon was looking for a compensations of 12 billion yen (around 116 million dollars).

Here is the summary of the judgment:

"Nikon obtained the patent related to VR technology in 2002. The content of the patented invention relates to technology wherein a vibration detection device, which detects the amount of camera vibration at angles around photographic objects, prevents the influence of vibration of a motor for lens and thereby allows more accurate photo shots. Sigma affirms that the scope of the patented invention does not include any functions which reduce the influence of camera shake. However, Mr. Osuga, the Judge in Chief, states that the effects of the invention in Nikon’s specification is described as “it allows image blur to be reduced” and that the specification clears that it includes camera shake. Thus, Mr. Osuga stands for Nikon’s assertion. In addition, Mr. Osuga points out that image blur prevention system requires various control functions, and he states that this patented invention of Nikon’s should be rewarded based on the contribution of the patent to the defendant’s products, that is 15%. Therefore, the Tokyo District Court calculated profits earned by Sigma to be a maximum of 10.1 billion JPY, and found compensation of damages to be 15% of the profits of the accused products earned by Sigma."

Photography Technique / Cool example of why gear doesn't matter
« on: March 09, 2014, 02:35:15 PM »
This is a nice video of making images with a really cheap camera and post processing those images in a smartphone ... its a nice example of why gear doesn't matter ... but it does not help my GAS problem, coz I still want better cameras and lenses ;D
Pro Tog, Cheap Camera Challenge (Benjamin Von Wong) Small | Large

Software & Accessories / Corrupted Images in Lightroom 5.3
« on: March 07, 2014, 04:48:26 AM »
When I import images to Lightroom 5.3 (using "Add photos to catalog without moving them") some of my images are showing up with a weird color banding kinda thing at the bottom of the image (it only happens at the bottom of the image ... below is one for your reference ... you can also see a few more "damaged" images in the thumbnails at the bottom of the screen shot). However, when I download/check in Canon DPP, everything seems fine i.e. there is no image corruption/damage.
This is happening only with the images made with my 5D MKII and 70D ... images from my other cameras, (EOS-M, G1X, Nikon D610 & Sony a7) do not exhibit this problem ... and it happens regardless of the memory cards I use (CF & SHDC).
I import all my images to a Seagate Backup Plus USB3 Portable drive and access them from there ... but the same problem occurs even if I import directly to my MBP.
What do you think could be the problem?

Reviews / Moon and Saturn Convergence Captured with Magic Lantern
« on: March 04, 2014, 03:00:30 PM »
Just got this email with this article posted By planetMitch (on Planet 5D)

Is Magic Lantern changing the world? Yes!

Here’s another example of a use for Magic Lantern RAW video that just astounded me.

While in itself, it isn’t “exciting” video for most people, for those who are into astronomy, an occulation of objects is indeed fascinating (I was very into astronomy as a kid and watched many of these events).
    Note: Our comment section is back again! Make your thoughts known to the world directly at the bottom of planet5D posts again! Scroll down to see what everyone is saying   
When I saw this video, I was so surprised by the dynamic range – the Moon is very bright and Saturn isn’t – so I had to ask Colin Legg how he did it! He graciously sent planet5D some background info.

It is especially significant if you understand the difficulty in making this video (again, I know it isn’t horribly exciting or cinematic), not only the relative rarity of it, but how difficult it is do shoot… so I want you to specifically see the ‘challenges’ section below.

From Colin Legg:

We have waited 10 years for a Saturn/Moon occultation event in Australia. The Moon orbits the Earth at an angle with respect to the Sun and planets and this slowly changes with time. 2014/2015 are good years for occultations as the angles converge. We are lucky to have 4 Saturn events in Western Australia this year.

The first, February 22nd, was a daylight occultation, with first contact occurring right on dawn in WA. I have wanted to video this event for years. The challenge is to capture sharp well exposed images of both the Moon and Saturn as they converge. Saturn is tiny compared to the Moon due to it’s much larger distance away. So you need a fairly good telescope to nicely capture both the planet and it’s rings.

Moon Saturn Occultation
Moon Saturn Occultation Small | Large

Captured from Perth, Western Australia, just on dawn.

Equipment: Celestron C8, f/10, prime focus. Canon 5D2, running Magic Lantern RAW video firmware in 3x crop mode @ 1880 x 1056 resolution. 1/60 sec exposure, ISO 200, 10 fps.

Thanks to Alex Cherney for the original heads up :)

More at facebook.com/ColinLeggPhotography

1. Stability: At 2000 mm focal length you need a solid tripod, well balanced camera and no wind. Camera mirror slap and shutter shake are both sources of unwanted movement.

2. Dynamic Range: The limb of the Moon is quite a bit brighter than Saturn. A 14 bit, DSLR has adequate range, 8 bit is too narrow.

3. Resolution and Scale. Smaller pixels are preferred to capture the fine details. At least full HD (or close) to include as much of the Moon’s limb as possible.

The 1st requirement is best served by video capture. Electronic shutter eliminates camera shake. The 2nd and 3rd are best served by classic DSLR still capture. What to do?

1. Hire a 1Dc or Red. Both meet all requirements, but are quite expensive to hire and not readily available in WA. Cost can exceed $400 for one day hire.

2. Install Magic Lattern alpha video firmware on 5D2, and shoot in 3x crop mode video. Video solves (1), Raw solves (2), 3x crop solves (3). And it costs nothing (extra) !

Equipment: Celestron C8, 2000 mm, f/10, prime focus. Canon EOS 5D Mark II, running Magic Lantern RAW video firmware in 3x crop mode @ 1880 x 1056 resolution. 1/60 sec exposure, ISO 200, 10 fps.

Third Party Manufacturers / Nikon and Quality Control issues again
« on: February 22, 2014, 02:56:51 AM »
Over at nikonrumors, and a few other forums, report problems with water leakage in Nikon 1 AW 1 (underwater mirrorless camera), which was launched on September 19, 2013.

According to one of the customers, digitalrev has cancelled his order of Nikon 1 AW 1 saying that the 1AW1 has been "discontinued by the manufacturer".

Some say it is true, some say it is not true, but the fact remains that it has been in "Back ordered" status with almost all of the biggest authorized sellers (e.g. B&H, Adorama, Amazon etc) for a very long time.

Considering the QC issues Nikon has had, with their SB 900 speedlite & D600 camera, maybe they are trying to nip this in the bud as quietly as they can. Sad really to see a top camera manufacturer losing their reputation like this, due to avoidable mistakes.   

Thought of starting this thread, so we can share info on any new lenses coming up for the Sony FE mount (a7 & a7R).
Here is the latest chart that was released yesterday (18 Feb 2014) or the day before yesterday (17 Feb 2014)

Just got an email from Planet5D with the below message:

Some special pricing came in overnight – I believe these are good while supplies last – so don’t be waiting around as they may not last long!

The last one in the list is $250 off! And at 100mbps, it should be fast enough for Magic Lantern RAW video :)

Lenses / DxO & MTF Charts ... a little help please!
« on: February 13, 2014, 09:43:33 AM »
I am not into lens/sensor scores or MTF chart readings etc ... I have nothing against it, in fact I envy those who can understand all the math/science (that goes into the lens/senor scores/charts) and make their purchase decisions based on it ... but I generally do not have patience/skill to go into scores and charts ... I buy lenses based on the reviews from a few sources that I trust (including several members in CR) ... sometimes, I buy camera gear based on how comfortable I am with it ... but generally, I feel that most modern camera gear is more capable then my skills as a photographer.

I would like to learn & understand how someone gives a score to a particular lens or sensor. In this case I chose DxO because, over the past few years, I've read several discussions about DxO (prior to that I was not even aware such a company exists) and it got me interested in wanting to learn a bit more. Generally discussions related to DxO seem to invite war, blood bath and then end up with personal insults (I am also equally to blame for some of those discussions). So, I'd like to request your assistance to help me (and anyone else who is interested) understand DxO scores in "layman's" terms ... but please, I beg you not to turn this into DxO worshiping / hating contest. Also, please refrain from using this topic to poke fun or insult or score a point over fellow member ... we come here because of our passion for photography, so we are basically like minded citizens ... so please help me (and others) learn.

I was looking at some lens comparison scores over at DxO today (a screen shot of which I've posted below). According to this a $3000 dollar lens seems to have better sharpness than a $12000 lens. I do understand that a lens is not just about sharpness but also about various factors such as how well it auto focuses ... but for now I just want to understand only the sharpness part of the scores. From my understanding, the scores suggest that the Sigma 120-300 f/2.8 is sharper than the EF 200-400 L IS (without using 1.4 TC), when both have them are tested at f/4 ... is that correct?
... also, is there an explanation to DxO scores? as in how they have arrived at that score?
... and if there is no explanation (for how they allotted those scores), how does one know if they are accurate?
Appreciate if you can assist in helping me understand in simple terms without jargon ... and once again, no blood bath please.

Thanks in advance

Third Party Manufacturers / Sony FE 70-200 f/4 G OSS lens
« on: February 13, 2014, 07:41:06 AM »
Just read, at Sonayalpharumors, that the FE 70-200 f/4 G OSS lens is now available for pre-order for US$ 1498 and it'll be available from 20th April 2014
I am not so sure about this lens ... I mean the a7 & a7R are meant to be compact and IMHO that is their biggest strength over a DSLR ... but having this lens which weighs 840gms on a a7 or a7R kinda defeats that purpose ... I'd rather use my EF 70-200 f/2.8 L IS II if I have to (even though its heavier) ... coz if I can carry 840gms, going up to 1490 gms is not that big a deal, especially if I am able to let in twice the amount of light with the f/2.8 lens.
What do you guys think about this lens?

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