February 28, 2015, 08:08:08 PM

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Messages - tcmatthews

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Lenses / Re: which telephoto for travel?
« on: February 21, 2015, 03:28:52 PM »
I would keep the 70-200f4L IS as the travel zoom.  I have used the non IS version for years.  My  current light DSLR travel kit consists of a Lowepro Adventure 170 bag , Canon 6D, Tamron 28-752.8, 70-200f4L and 24f2.8 IS .  When I used my 60D I could get the 70-200, EF 15-85, and Sigma 10-20 in there.  The thing is the 70-300L is just to fat for use in that bag.  The f4 70-200 long thin body is actual beneficial in the Lowepro Adventure bag. 

As for drawing less attention I bought a Tamron 70-300 VC for that.  It has very good IQ from 70-200.  It is a little soft from 200-300 and pennies compared to the Canon 70-300L and better than any of the other canon 70-300 lens.   I sometimes take it instead of my 70-200f4L.  It normally runs around $450.  But I picked it up when they were offering a $100 manufactures rebate.

If I had to do it all over again I would have saved my money and bough the IS version of the 70-200f4L.  My next purchase will be the Canon 16-35f4L IS.  It will round out my three lens travel kit. 

EOS-M / Re: Poll: Would you have bought the M3? (North America)
« on: February 09, 2015, 09:00:36 PM »
I voted No.   But that is simply because I have moved on.  It looks like the M3 is finally a camera that I would consider buying for $500.  If my current M1 died I would consider it.  But for the most part that ship sailed some time ago.   

Quite frankly if the M1 had the controls of the M3 and was priced around 500-599 I would have bought one.  Instead I bought my parents a Nex5n (on sale).  After trying it out I pre-ordered a Nex6 that I have now upgraded to an A7 II.  I shoot primarily old manual lenses with it and have build up a prime lens kit.  Those classic lens work best with a full frame sensor.  The A7 II is an amazing camera I cannot imagine moving back to a crop camera even with a speed-booster.  I cannot live without a viewfinder so the M was never considered.  Not to mention it was outrageously over priced. 

I was looking to pick-up the Sony E 20mm when Canon put the M up for fire sale.  So I picked up one with the 22mm because it cost less than the Sony 20mm lens.  I use it in the place of a point and shoot.  I plan on replacing it if a M is available when it dies.  That is all it is to me a point and shoot that I can change the lens on if I want. 

So thank you Canon for finally making the camera I wanted 3 years ago.  To bad you did not make it then. 

Do even get me started on the fact they did not have a 70d released then.  My 60d died a few months before the M announcement.  I was stuck using my Rebel XS.  I could not image going back to a rebel for primary use.  The 7D was just plain dated.  The fact there was no 70D announcement at the time almost had me selling all my Canon gear.  If the original M had features like the Nex6 I could have used it until the 70d was released.  I would have liked to buy a camera that could hold me over until the 70D release.  Then continue using as a travel camera.  To bad they missed that opportunity.   In the end I bought a replacement 60D.  I am still not happy about that.  I have sense move on to a 6D.   

Now if I want a small compact mirrorless camera I would buy m43.  I already picked up a used OMD EM5.  I had this crazy idea of creating a light travel kit.  A7 for landscape and an OMD with  40-150mm f2.8 pro,Teleconverter and 300 F4 Pro for wildlife.  Then a heavy kit that includes my Canon gear for wildlife. 

So I have sailed off and changed boats already. 


This is why I almost never ETTR.  I prefer to expose for the subject.

Interesting...And when you shoot landscape what is it that you consider your subject? The dark shadowed valley, or the brighter, green hills for example? What about the sky?

I'd like to hear more about this as well.  From my (admittedly limited) understanding of sensor design, you want the maximum exposure possible short of over exposure.  ETTR can mean one of two things, one of which is useless.

  • Subjective ETTR: Use the maximum exposure that will not overexpose essential elements of the scene.  In many cases (e.g. specular highlights and well-lit fog banks) there's not enough DR in any DSLR to capture the full tonal range in a single frame, so the photographer must make some judgements about which elements to preserve, or whether to use other techniques to control egregious tonal areas.
  • Ritualistic ETTR: look at the histogram and make sure the entire tone curve comes close to the right edge without going over.  This is a sure way to sacrifice your main subject(s) on the alter of ritualistic technique.  #2 works only when the entire scene is within the DR of the sensor.
ETTL is completely unsupported by the principles of digital sensor design.

If I use ETTR at all it is subjective ETTR.  In general I prefer to bracket out the shot in that case.  I find often I use the bracketed shot just below my ETTR shot anyway.  So I sacrifice some possible but hard to recover tonal areas. 

True, ETTL is not supported by principles of digital sensor design. But it is a valid technique especially if you want to produce high saturation, high contrast images with out touching those sliders in LR.  You will need the entire scene with in the DR of the sensor. 

Remember ETTR is a technique.  Do not use it ritualistically. Only use it when needed.  I just find I do not like to use it much or need it.


This is why I almost never ETTR.  I prefer to expose for the subject.

Interesting...And when you shoot landscape what is it that you consider your subject? The dark shadowed valley, or the brighter, green hills for example? What about the sky?

It really depends on what you want your subject to be.  Sometimes the sky is the only interesting thing so you expose for the sky.  Other times it is the land or geological feature.  The patterns the shadows make in the valley below.  In general you must choose a subject.   Often you have to balance out the sky and the landscape.  Photographs are always more interesting when you have something to draw you in.

The difficulty comes in when you have an interesting scene that includes hard shadows and bright sky.  In general you end up in a situation with two much dynamic range.  Even ETTR there will be to much dynamic range.  So you have to resort to braced shots then pic the best one, HDR in post or Dual ISO ML tricks. 

ETTR is a valid technique to maximize DR of the sensor.  However what you really want is to control of the amount of DR in the scene. 

Lenses / Re: New Unique Macro Coming? [CR1]
« on: February 08, 2015, 01:29:54 PM »
A 2:1 macro?  That would be cool.

Lenses / Re: EF 50 1.8 STM
« on: February 08, 2015, 01:28:37 PM »
Lets face it both the EF 50 1.8  and the EF 50 1.4 are in desperate need up updating. 

The EF 50 1.8 is the gateway prime.  It is likely that canon sells more of them than any other non kit lens.  It makes perfect sense for Canon to update it.  The design has likely been around for a while.  They likely stopped production on parts for the FE 50 1.8 and waited for supplies to run low to finished the final run.  It seems that Canon is moving all of the old micro motor lens to STM.   

This makes perfect business sense.  But, we all want a upgraded new version of the EF 50 1.4 with IS.

Lets say this is a little bit of old and a little bet of new.  My A7 II test pictures with Canon FD 35f2 SSC II.  Taken yesterday at JSC Rocket Park.  I find it remarkable how much this lens picked up on Ebay for $50 performs like a modern lens. 

Because someone mentioned squirrel.   Also included are a few other shots with the Tamron SP 150-600mm.
That squirrel is a little bit greedy, isn't he?! ;D
Great photos

The real question is where did he get that pecan.  As far as I know the nearest pecan tree is in the back yard of the house across the street.  He had been carrying it for a while. 

Magiclangern provides a button to "expose to the right". Adjust exposure in postprocessing to fit your needs. Problem solved, case closed.

And how, exactly, do you do that? Because if you are using the 'Blacks', 'Shadows', 'Exposure', 'Highlights', or 'Whites' sliders you are not getting the tonality of the scene.

If you use tone curves on each colour channel seperately, if you are using the camera calibration panel etc then yu might be getting close.

You seem to be missing the point that 'simple' adjustments to an overexposed file do not get you back to the same tonality as a 'correctly' exposed file.

The RAW data is linear. If you expose to the right, you just collect more photons. In software you have to reduce (or increase) the exposure by the same amount that you adjusted while taking the picture. Then you have the same raw data without blown highlights (when decreasing exposure taking the picture) or with less noise (when increasing exposure when taking the picture).

You do not need to change the channels separately. You do not need to change the tonality curve.

The required correction is only one single value. E. g. +2EV while taking the picture and then -2EV to reverse that effect in software.

That is the theory and software which does that is fine but there are many things that can go wrong. One big difference is the tonality curve of the camera (software) which is applied to convert linear RAW data to JPEG values. You cannot work with those JPEGs, you need linear RAW. But even then the RAW is preprocessed by software and that might do some things like change the color of dark/bright parts. E.g. reduce the color of dark parts to avoid color noise.

You can simply test your software. Switch to manual mode and take a photo of some dark objects before a dominant white wall and expose like the camera would do (make the white wall grey). Then expose to the right and remember how many EV you increased the exposure. E.g. 1/100s camera exposure vs 1/25s ETTR exposure = +2EV. Then use the RAW files and convert them with your software and apply -2EV exposure to the second picture. Now they should have EXACTLY the same color properties but the ETTR picture should have less noise. If not, your software is not up to that specific task.

Using the camera JPEGs here will lead to totally wrong colors, banding etc. due to all the "optimizations" applied to the RAW data in order to get good looking JPEGs.

At the end of the day the goal is to take a picture and to expose for that specific subject and the sensor noise may actually be low enough that you are satisfied with the exposure suggested by the spot metering of the camera. In that case you can directly use the camera JPEGs and be fine. Heavy postprocessing is only for low volume activities or people with too much time.

This is why I almost never ETTR.  I prefer to expose for the subject.  It always seemed that after ETTR I could never get the colors and contrast right.  They would always be flat.  Then I would have to mess around with curves or color sliders.  It was simply not worth the time.  I could never make it look right and would loose patience in it. 

Most of my shots with my 6D are usable as JPEGs straight out of camera.  (if I do not mess up.)  But I still shoot RAW post process in LR.  It is however generally minimal to just get back to the JPEG.   

The irony is that with my Sony cameras still I prefer ETTL.   

Because someone mentioned squirrel.   Also included are a few other shots with the Tamron SP 150-600mm.   

another day wandering around in the cold with the Tamron....

Very nice shots, Don. I especially like the owl.

The owl is hanging around the bird feeders. The small birds spill sunflower seeds onto the ground, squirrels come to eat the spilled seeds, and the owl gets the squirrels. I haven't been able to get a picture of the capture yet, but I hope to....
Funny that reminds me a couple of year ago the birds were going berserk in the back yard.  I looked out the window only to see a red tailed hawk swoop down and get a bird.  After he left. A squirrel came from somewhere and stuffed him self with sun flower seeds.   

I have been trying to get a picture of that hawk off and on for two years. 

EOS Bodies / Re: What's Next From Canon, NAB and Beyond
« on: February 06, 2015, 09:11:22 PM »
I'd say they are going to announce a new 6D in october, along with a new 1DX indeed only if that global shutter rumor is true, if not, 1DX II on feb 2016.

I'd bet money on a 2016 release.
I have my bet on a Spring 2016 release of a 5d IV.  I do not think that a 6D II will come before that.  More likely the 6D II will come in fall of 2016.  I not going to make bets on a new 1DX.  I am not really interested in 1D bodies.

EOS Bodies / Re: Bingo! New Canon 5Ds has 50.6 MP new rumored specs
« on: February 06, 2015, 06:50:47 PM »
All I wanted was Sony/Nikon like dynamic range, great color, clean low ISO's.
Looks like we aren't getting that and a release 4+ months away! - pretty typical Canon.
Pretty disappointed, I thought they were finally coming around, but not very surprised after all.

I'm getting a Sony a7r for the time being for my TS-Es and see what happens.
I will most likely be getting that 11-24 though if its as good as it looks.

Same old Canon Colors (a good thing), same old Canon DR (Not a good thing) but now there is more of it.  Really these cameras should have been released a couple of months after the 5D III if they are not going to break ground in other areas besides resolution. Its all rather boring.  Maybe ML can add dual ISO to them and salvage the situation. 

I am going to continue using my Canon 6D for wildlife.  I do not regret upgrading my Nex6 to a A7 II at all now. After buying some more lenses I will likely pick up an A7 r II and possibly a  7D II for the Tamron 150-600.

EOS-M / Re: Official: Canon EOS M3 and It's Not Coming To North America
« on: February 06, 2015, 06:20:56 PM »
As I think about this more, it seems that it might help to make a distinction between two very different segments of the mirrorless market:

Group A: Those who have never owned a DSLR and currently shoot with a camera phone or Powershot but would like to take their photography to a higher level.

Group B: Those who already own a DSLR and want a compact system that doesn't hold them back from their current level of photography.

There might very well be other groups, too, so I'm not intentionally limiting it to these -- just making an observation about these two groups.

It would seem to me that the EOS M series is aimed at Group A. The majority of complainers about the M series seems to be Group B. Incidentally, it would seem that mirrorless offerings from other brands, particularly the Sony A7 series, are aimed at Group B.

Complaining that the product positioned to meet the demands of Group A doesn't meet the demands of Group B seems a bit misdirected. That said, I understand why people in Group B with Canon gear would want Canon to make a mirrorless product aimed at Group B. For their sakes, I hope that Sony, Olympus and Fuji succeed in establishing the mirrorless market for Group B -- enough to be attractive for Canon to respond with an offering that competes well in the Group B market.

Until then, it appears that Canon is content to sell DSLRs.

This is a fair assessment.  The problem is Group A already had cheaper similarly featured products.  The original EOS M had the features on par with the year old Nex5n.  Or possibly even a Nex3.  It was priced similar to a Nex6  a camera that appeals to Group B.  These Sony Nex cameras were wildly available at retail outlets all over the place. I have never seen an EOS-M in a retail outlet.  Group A has never seen a Canon EOS-M.  In fact some in group B have never even seen one. 

How can you sell product to group A if they never know it exits? 

EOS Bodies / Re: 6D Mark II speculation...
« on: February 05, 2015, 09:03:03 PM »
I hope they move to Digic 7 for the 6D II and 5d IV.  Adding SD USH-II and USB 3. 

5d III auto-focus and other features slightly less than MP than 5d IV.   I hope it adds an articulating screen and the shutter that can do 1/8000 second. 


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