January 25, 2015, 03:34:54 PM

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Messages - Eldar

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Lenses / Re: What to take to Iceland ?
« on: January 23, 2015, 05:56:37 AM »
Iceland is a fantastic land for photography. During my last trip I used only primes. Zeiss 15/2.8, 21/2.8, 55/1.4, 135/2.0. I had CPL-filter to all and used it almost all the time. I also used a tripod a lot of the time. I also brought zoom lenses, but I did not use them. The only thing I regret not bringing were the TS-E lenses.

Photography in Iceland is slow pace photography and it´s open terrain, so manual focus and zooming with your feet is easy.

Lenses / Re: EF 100-400mm ii vs. EF 200-400 with 1.4 TC
« on: January 23, 2015, 04:55:25 AM »
I've used the 200-400 several times and most recently to cover the college football championship.  Is it me or does that lens vignette like crazy?  I was using a 1DX body that did not have the lens correction profiles loaded.  The JPGs had very much a spotlight look to them with vignetting across a majority of the frame.  The raw files looked fine once lens correction was applied in LR, but for this assignment I was given both the body and the lens and had to shoot JPG for the client.  I was pretty disappointed.  Having shot the Cotton Bowl with the same combo and in raw, it was much better.  I'm just not a fan of a $11k lens requiring so much digital manipulation to be consistent across the frame.
I have gone through a number of my images with the 200-400 to critically asses vignetting. I have not measured it accurately, but if I had to give a number I would say that, wide open, it´s about 1 stop.

Lenses / Re: Auto Focus MicroAdjust--Why the Stigma?
« on: January 21, 2015, 04:34:30 PM »
Frankly, AFMA scares me a bit.  Is there a thread that discusses the right way to do it?  Thanks.

The easiest way I know of is Reikan Focal, and run it in automatic mode... very easy!

It scares me too.  :-[  I have had my 70D for a couple of months now and I haven't tried it.

Don - Do you recommend the pro version or would the plus version be sufficient?
AFMA is rather simple and if you only have one body and a couple of lenses, you may just as well do it manually. In addition to FoCal I use LensAlign. There are lots of videos on youtube, like this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k642WWzMcCI You can easily make one that´ll work by your self. Be also aware that you can always go back to zero, so whatever adjustments you make can easily be reversed back to start.

Lenses / Re: Auto Focus MicroAdjust--Why the Stigma?
« on: January 21, 2015, 04:18:12 PM »
I believe the main discussion around AFMA and returned lenses came with the Sigma 50mm Art. And we had it for at least two reasons. The first was due to the lens being inconsistent and unstable, the other because of the USB-dock.

The discussion around the first was to debate whether AFMA could solve the problem or not (it certainly did not on my (several) copies of neither the 50 Art, nor the 35 Art, so I have returned both). The other was how to use the dock and why it seemed like we were doing Sigma´s job. That basic calibration should have been done by them prior to shipping the lens.

My experience is that all lenses, in particular the faster ones, need AFMA. I use FoCal and it is a fairly quick job to get good lenses, like the majority of L-lenses, calibrated. Slower lenses may be a bit more difficult, but at the same time less critical. I simply gave up on Sigma, since the AF could not be trusted. An out of focus image is out of focus, no matter how good the optical quality of the lens is ...

Reviews / Re: Review - Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG Art
« on: January 21, 2015, 05:13:41 AM »
You know, you could actually take those very same  shots with an iPhone and nobody would know the difference.
Then I suggest you spend your money on something else ...

Pricewatch Deals / Re: Deal: Canon EOS-1D X Body $4199
« on: January 20, 2015, 08:06:16 AM »
At that price, if I didn't have one, I'd get one!

No matter what Canon have in pipeline, this is a lot of camera for the money and a 1DX-II will cost a lot more.

Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: January 19, 2015, 03:52:23 PM »
Love all the shots, everyone.  Wish I had parrots in my back yard.  But I have chickadees! ;)

This one made my day.

That is a lovely shot Jack! To catch those small and fast buggers in the air is quite difficult (I have man weeks of practice ...)

Black & White / Re: Black and White Landscapes!
« on: January 18, 2015, 03:40:21 PM »
Really like your Gozo Azure Window, Leichenmuehle. Iconic place.

Currently we´re in the middle of winter here, with lots of snow and ice. So a quick trip to the dessert in Sharjah is quite a contrast for a Norwegian.

I liked this line, with wave patterns on one side and totally smooth on the other.

1DX, 24-70 f2.8L II
1/100s, f11, ISO100

Lenses / Re: EF 100-400mm ii vs. EF 200-400 with 1.4 TC
« on: January 17, 2015, 12:52:02 PM »
I´ve had the 200-400 for some time and it is a fantastic lens. As some of you may have seen from a couple of old posts, I´m using a monopod in a flag bandoleer to support the lens. I also use this with the 600mm with both the 1.4xIII and 2xIII extenders. All weight issues goes away and it is surprisingly stable. For any shooting where you cannot zoom with your feet, having the 200-560mm zoom range available, with That IQ, is simply fantastic.

But I have ordered the new 100-400, as a compact and light weight option for hiking and travel. But it will be an addition to what I have, not a replacement. I previously had the 70-300L, but sold it because I found the long end a bit too short and it was not used much.

EOS Bodies / Re: EOS 5D Mark III Replacement Talk [CR2]
« on: January 10, 2015, 03:03:32 AM »
With their latest lens releases, Canon has shown that they are fully aware of what it takes to compete in this market. We also know that they are better at making money than any of the others. I´m crossing my fingers for a true D810 basher and if it is, it will not be cheap ...

Canon EF Prime Lenses / Re: Canon EF 600mm f/4L IS II USM
« on: January 10, 2015, 01:21:37 AM »
i have been considering this lens for a while and decided to get one after talking to a couple guys using the lenses. i just got it today and haven't had a chance to do any real shooting with it yet but here are a couple test shots taken while getting the afma set on the 7dii. they are with the 1.4xiii. i don't see how there can be a better lens for small birds like this. the weight is not a big deal as i am used to shooting the sigma 120-300s which is pretty heavy but the thing is enormous. it was really windy today and the lens hood is as big as an airport windsock!

there is no extra sharpening or tweaking just dxo default conversion, there is no module for the lens+tc
Congratulations with your purchase! I agree, there is no better lens for small birds, especially combined with the 1.4xIII. But as you say, it´s big. I often go on longer hikes in the mountains and I sometimes wonder what I´m doing, carrying this beast. But then you get That image and suddenly size and weight is no issue. The size is actually a bigger issue that its weight to me.

EOS Bodies / Re: EOS 5D Mark III Replacement Talk [CR2]
« on: January 09, 2015, 10:38:03 AM »
I have a strong feeling that this (these) thing(s) will impress our socks off!

Animal Kingdom / Re: NatGeo 2014 Photo Contest Winners...
« on: January 08, 2015, 11:10:49 AM »
Like so many here, I first looked through the pictures with a technical eye. It's  easy to criticize the technique employed for any picture so I went back to all of them with a 'different' eye this time around: I wanted to see the art in every picture.
So #12 stood out stronger than the others, the destroyed Homs. It made me shiver to remember that these buildings were once inhabited and the owners and occupiers are now either dead or had to run for their safety. It's a ghost town today and I felt the picture reflected that very well.
I agree. It gives you the "destroyed and abandoned, with only death and vultures left"-look. I also believe the lighting is good, to give that dramatic effect. But I believe a framing, including the ground, would increase that message even further.

But No.5 is a neither fowl or fish for me. Centre framing, cut off head gear and cut off torso. It could have been just the face, or face with head gear or preferably face, head gear and torso, to show the tattoos properly, with the vague shapes in the background.

But again, it is always fun to be the outside critic of someone else´s work :)

Animal Kingdom / Re: NatGeo 2014 Photo Contest Winners...
« on: January 08, 2015, 02:34:56 AM »
I am always slightly puzzled with these stacks of award winning images. Some of them are stunning and they clearly stand out from the crowd. It might be that my expectations are too high, But to be honest; If I had shot some of these, I would probably call them interesting, but not worth sharing. Examples:

No.5; Yes, he has an expression and lighting is good, but if you were next to him, considering he is apparently blind and don't move much, is that the composition you would choose?

No.11; Would you have considered that a candidate for an award if you had shot it?

No.12; Yes, it shows the desctrution of the war and the absence of people, with only birds circling adds to it and the light is dramatic, but I would have liked a different composition, with more of the ground in the image.

Taste is of course subjective ...

Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: January 07, 2015, 02:52:25 PM »
That is quite a close-up of that African Hawk-Eagle! How did you get that close?

I´m a bit envious to all of you with large spectacular birds to shoot. I only have my small and jumpy friends to shoot these days. But they are charming small creatures and I really enjoy having them around the house.

1DX, 840mm, f5.6, ISO4000

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