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Messages - chasinglight

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Pricewatch Deals / Re: Still Live: Canon EOS 5D Mark III Body $1999
« on: February 26, 2015, 10:27:59 PM »
Just want to report that I ordered a 5d3 from bigvalue and it came in today. I didn't have a chance to shoot anything meaningful, but everything is fine in my initial tests. And for those worried about longevity, I ordered a 7d from bigvalue several years ago and never had an issue with it. So don't hesitate if you are in the market for a 5d3.

Lenses / Re: buying advice: 24-70 2.8 v1 or v2
« on: December 16, 2014, 01:25:41 PM »
There is a significant IQ improvement as well as noticeable less weight in the v2 lens. Filter thread is annoying however, if you have the rest of the crowd 77mm.

Do you need that f/2.8 speed? You could get e.g. 24-70/4L IS, save some money, weight and use the filters you already have...

Thanks for your advice. Yes, the main reason I am looking is for f/2.8 for shooting in lower light situations. I already have the 24-105 f/4 so despite any advantages of the 24-70 f/4 IS I have not considered it.

Lenses / buying advice: 24-70 2.8 v1 or v2
« on: December 16, 2014, 11:47:44 AM »
Hi, I am on the fence about which to get for an admittedly silly reason: filter size. The majority of all my lenses and filters are 77mm. The issue with the filter size is two fold: 1) I hate to buy filters over again in 82mm 2) when traveling bringing filters in another size is an annoyance.

So the question is for those that have owned both lenses, is the v2 thaat much better (IQ and AF) than the v1? Thanks in advance for your help.

Canon General / Re: A Rundown of EOS 7D Mark II Information
« on: August 16, 2014, 12:00:18 AM »
EOS-1 style top plate

No mode dial?

I agree with neuro. If "EOS-1 style top plate" meant no popup flash then they could/would have said "EOS-5 style top plate" or "EOS-6 style top plate" or "no popup flash". Instead it likely means "EOS-1 style top plate controls" which plays to the theory that is camera may be aimed more at the 1DIV market than the 7D market.

Lenses / Re: Airshow Photography - Big Whites vs Small Whites...
« on: August 05, 2014, 10:07:15 AM »
I have been shooting airshows for a long time.  After going to a digital camera, it became apparent that lens quality was the top priority.  I started out with a 70-200L IS.  I was not getting those long shots, so I forked over a few more bucks for the 300 2.8.  Incredible quality!  But now, I'm too powerful when teams fly.  Now I'm finding the 100-400L IS is perfect.  Depending on the show, I'll pack all but carry the 100-400 80% of the time.  Two bodies- 7D with the 100-400 and the 5D III with a 24-105.  I'll sometimes swap bodies if needed.  I carry one extra lens- usually a super wide.  If the day is overcast, I'll go to the 300 2.8.  Strategy is to move further back if teams fly, not risking cutting of noses or tails. 
   If I was told only one lens was allowed into an airshow, it would be the 100-400.
some 100-400 shots:  Click on the photo to go larger on the Flicker page.  Plenty more once on the Flickr page.

Keith, thanks for your insight; I appreciate it. Your images are stunning. The panning images convey such detail and the wildfire images are dramatic and powerful.

Lenses / Re: Airshow Photography - Big Whites vs Small Whites...
« on: August 05, 2014, 01:01:19 AM »
Thanks for all the responses so far. I am still tempted to rent a big white, most probably the 300 2.8 to give it a shot, but I am still not fully convinced that I will get that much more out of my images. Especially since luck, weather, perspective, etc all plays a large factor and provided that all of those plus proper AF and exposure are satisfied my images are very sharp. Here is a recent example and a 100% crop from my 6D + 100-400. The original image was just cropped to 16:9, otherwise no other cropping was done. The image was lightly sharpened with USM. Funny story, I brought the 6D along to shoot static displays/wide angle shots and was going to use the 7D to shoot the planes in flight. Well after a few performances I decided to give the 6D a shot and it actually outperformed the 7D in AF and IQ. Go figure...been trying to sell my 7D ever since..

Lenses / Re: Airshow Photography - Big Whites vs Small Whites...
« on: August 04, 2014, 10:38:13 PM »
I had a (rented!) 200-400 the last time out; I wouldn't willingly go to another airshow without that lens in particular.  If I really needed the light I'd get either a 400 f/2.8 or that Spaceballs the Lens (the Sigma 200-500).


Great shot! So did you find the 200-400 handholdable? That is another lens I was looking at renting, but the 300 2.8 + 1.4x is considerably lighter, though it's sill 2x as heavy as my 100-400. Did you find yourself taking many photos at focal lengths less than 400mm. At some airshows I have zoomed through the whole range of my 100-400, at others I had it locked at 400.

Lenses / Airshow Photography - Big Whites vs Small Whites...
« on: August 04, 2014, 06:40:57 PM »
Over the past few years I have shot a handful of airshows, first with the t2i and a 70-200 + 1.4x (blue angels below), then a few with the 7D + 100 -400 and even with a 6D + 100 - 400 (thunderbirds below). For the upcoming Chicago Air and Water show I have been thinking whether there are any equipment upgrades I can make to increase the quality of my images. The 100-400 is by and large THE airshow companion for good reason, its reasonably priced, flexible (wight and zoom), and has IS. I have been considering picking up a 400 5.6 for some time now to see whether I like it better than the 100 - 400 or not; though the IS in the 100-400 is key for panning shots. However, today I got the idea to maybe rent a 300 2.8 IS II with a 1.4x or 2x. I am not normally a fan of renting; I'd rather take the money and spend it on something I can keep..but that's neither here nor there.

Obviously shooting airshows can be hit or miss due to perspective, lighting, weather, and atmospheric conditions..luck...

So the question is what are the advantages of using say a 300 2.8 + 1.4x or 400 2.8 over a 400 5.6 or 100-400 to shoot an airshow? Obviously DoF isn't an issue since you are shooting near infinity, though the lower f/ will allow you to use a higher shutter speed and/or lower ISO. The real difference is probably in the sharpness; so the question is to anyone who has used a lens from both categories, is the IQ gain really worth the hassle of renting/twice the weight? I know for birding the IQ gain is very noticeable, but for airplanes?

Thanks in advance.

« on: July 21, 2014, 11:39:15 AM »
Great shots surapon. I have to agree that my favorite is the first one, both from a composition and processing standpoint. As a suggestion, on the last photo perhaps you could reduce the post processing just a bit, the halos on the horizon are a bit extreme for my taste and the saturation of the oranges could be dialed back a bit too. Additionally there is a rather large piece of sensor dust in the upper right portion of the photo. Again great shots. I am very jealous. I have been wanting to get out to monument valley for a while now. Any plans to visit Antelope Slot Canyon while you are in the area?

I don't think the 7D likes 70-200 lenses for some 70-200 had a terrible keeper rate on the 7D due to AF issues even after several rounds of AFMA with focal. The same 70-200 performed near flawlessly on the t2i when I had it and currently I do not have any issues with the 6D. By contrast I never had issues with 15-85 or 100-400 on the 7D.

Software & Accessories / Re: Canon BG-E13 Flimsy Tripod Mount
« on: July 12, 2014, 06:43:07 PM »
I found the same thing. The joint between the camera body and the grip is as strong as the camera body directly to the tripod. The problem seems to be the tripod mount of the grip itself. If the camera amd grip is mounted to the rrs L bracket I can easily flex the camera back and forth such that the only thing stopping the camera from flexing more is the camera strap loop hitting the indent in the rrs L bracket.

Hi Neuro.
I found it was the grip itself, the fit between the grips and bodies seem excellent, I would doubt that there is much scope for movement at the interface, it all seems to be flex in the plastic grip base.

Cheers Graham.

Is it the grip itself that is distorting/wobbling?  I always thought it was the connection between grip and body.  If you hold the body and grip in your two hands, you can move them and see the grip 'wiggle' on the body.  I prefer the ergonomics of a grip, and was annoyed by the need to remove it for maximum stability on a tripod, that was one of many reasons I moved to a 1-series body.

Software & Accessories / Re: Canon BG-E13 Flimsy Tripod Mount
« on: July 12, 2014, 12:18:21 AM »
ya, I suppose it could be that I just upgraded my support gear so I am more aware of the amount of flex when mounted to the tripod. But at the same time I don't remember any apparent flex in the 7D battery grip. Either way I just got a plain L plate for the 6D; this easily cut the amount of wiggle/flex on half. Now whether or not this flex can affect picture sharpness is a whole other issue. My guess is under ideal conditions it has no effect, but in the wind I'll take any advantage I can get.

I've seen several topics here previously about insuring your gear against theft or damage and I'm sorry I can't find that thread for reference.

I went to a State Farm agent and requested a quote to cover my inventory that totals about $45K. They sent a proposal for $850/annually which is much more than I recall hearing from other shooters here.

Who are others using for insurance?

Thanks again for your help. This is better than Dear Abby.... ::)

I pay state farm ~$150/year for $11k.... $150x4 is $ seems like a little much. I have a personal article policy (not for business) that covers everything except for war and vermin. I will note that it was kinda a hassle to get everything insured though, as you might expect they want receipts and some other form of proof of purchase. They even wanted an appraisal, but I got them to settle for the aforementioned documentation. Thankfully I have not needed it yet, but contrary to what others have said, if I lost, broke, or had a $1k piece of gear stolen I would file a claim....though I might think twice about filing a claim for something worth only a few hundred. I suppose the threshold of when to file a claim depends on one's financial state.

Software & Accessories / Canon BG-E13 Flimsy Tripod Mount
« on: July 09, 2014, 09:16:09 PM »

I know many say that the most stable way to mount your camera to a tripod is without the battery grip (though many will debate otherwise, but that is not the point of this post). I recently noticed that when I mount my Canon 6D + (authentic) Canon BG-E13 to a tripod (via arca swiss plate or RRS L bracket) there is significant flex in the BG-E13 tripod mount. In fact I can see the bottom of the battery grip flexing/torquing when light force is applied to the camera while the ball head is tightened. When the 7D was my main camera I always mounted my 7D + BG-E7 either directly to a tripod via an arca swiss plate or a RRS L Bracket and never really experienced any appreciable flex. So I guess my question is, out of curiosity, is anyone else noticing that the BG-E13 is pretty flimsy when mounted to a tripod? I don't have any issue with the quality for handheld use (though I do like the ergonomics of the BG-E7 better). Despite the ill effects to my workflow I am thinking that I will now remove my BG-E13 when using a tripod....and also exchange my RRS 6D w/grip L bracket for the plain 6D L bracket.

Thoughts? Comments?

Landscape / Re: Fireworks pics, let's see 'em!
« on: July 05, 2014, 12:56:32 AM »
Fireworks from tonight's show in Barrington, IL!

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