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Messages - viggen61

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1
Photography Technique / Re: Missed opportunity
« on: April 09, 2014, 01:05:49 PM »
Hi all
So my wife and I were walking in the park and she spots this hummingbird and points it to me. I have never seen one before, and got quite excited and worked up. The results were quite dismal (the best effort is below), so I am not even going to ask what I did wrong. But let's say this situation arises again, what should I do to ensure at least optimal results. I had a 135mm L attached to my 5dIII, ISO 160 (was set on Auto), f/8, 1/125 (was set on Av, forgot to change it in the haste). Thanks in advance.
Welcome to the world of Birds In Flight photography!

From what I can see, you got a pretty good shot there. The only thing I might say is a little cropping might be in order (unless you've already done that to excess...) to make the Hummingbird more prominent.

Hummingbirds take patience to photograph, and even so, they move very quickly and seem to never be in the right place. I often photograph them at a local refuge, and I'll set up my tripod with a 100-400 lens (set at 400, usually) only 8-12 feet from the flowers they are attracted to. This is to nearly fill the frame with the tiny bird. And for every keeper, I'll have a dozen or several dozen where I got bird butt, half a bird, no bird, blurry bird, etc.

If you can crop it a bit, do that and frame it. It's a nice photograph!

2
I don't know for sure about the 5D3 & its grip, but my 7D and BG-E7 are NOT a sealed combo together.

First, you can see light through the seam at the bottom of the camera and grip.

Second, I had it out in the lightest of rainshowers (no, really!), and I started getting all sorts of problems with the camera and grip. It led me to replace the coin cell (likely needed anyway, but not the root cause), swap batteries, remove the grip, etc.. Putting the main battery in the camera  got it all working, but as soon as I put the grip back on, it might go for a couple shots, but then it would stop. No error, just black.

I took the grip off for a few weeks and let it dry out, and now it seems to work fine 80% of the time. The other 20%, the portrait shutter release won't release, though it WILL work at half-press... And, of course, only when I really need it...

Not sure it's worth getting a new BG-E7 at this point, with a 7D2 "around the corner" (it's a long, street, though...).

3
If this/these will be your only cards, perhaps buy what's cheapest. As for reliability, I really don't think there is much of a problem with either, so long as you stick with established brands, and buy from reputable sellers.

My kit consists of 4 32GB 1000x, 3 16GB 400x, and an 8GB 400x. With my 7D, each 32GB allows me to take about 1,200 RAWs, or over 5,000 JPEGs (something I rarely do), for a potential total of almost 7,000 RAW images. I shoot wildlife, and it's often that I shoot 8FPS bursts, particularly with small, fast-moving subjects. In a day's shooting, I can fill a 32GB with RAWs, and come close to filling another.


4
The mirror allows a lot of light to the autofocus points that are behind it, so not all of it is reflected.

The reflex mirror allows a small portion of the light through for AF. It makes no difference to your eye, since your eye has the greatest computer on earth letting you see the image.

The sensor reflects quite a bit of light (I don't know if enough), a nano coating could be optimized to increase the reflectivity at 45 degrees.

The sensor reflects some light, but that is a natural result of having a highly polished surface. (It's like when your smartphone is turned off, you can use as a mirror in a pinch, but you wouldn't want to replace your bathroom mirror with it.) It is not the same as being a mirror. Any coating the increases reflectance will decrease the amount of light passing through it, therefore making the sensor less sensitive to light.

Live view would work just like now, the sensor would go into vertical position.

So how is it AFing again? I thought you said it used dual pixel?

The sensor would not be attached at the edge, but it would be through the middle, it would pivot on this axis. It would move half the distance that the mirror does now.

That might help a little... But one there is another issue. Your mirror box will need to be longer, unless you expect Canon to drop the EF lenses altogether, and make a whole new line based on the new, shorter, registration distance.

Vibration seems to be the biggest problem to me.

That is an understatement, I believe. There is a lot more in the sensor than you can see through the lens mount...

5
But you're not, as you say, "eliminating the mirror". You are using the sensor as the mirror.

I see several major issues:
  • A sensor isn't nearly as reflective as a mirror is. The mirror reflects close to 99% of all light that hits it. The viewfinder would be, at the very least, extremely dark.
  • Live view would not work
  • moving the sensor around very fast, and just before exposure is fraught with problems. The mirror can move quickly because it's light, AND the only thing you care about is that it is out of the light path. Moving the sensor to vertical requires very precise positioning, and no bouncing.
  • Leaf shutters are used in medium format SLRs, but there are limitations to leaf shutter construction. I'm not sure speeds of 1/8000 are practical in a leaf shutter. Add to that, the leaf has to be open for focus and metering, then shut, then opened & shut, then opened again. Sports photogs and wildlife photogs would probably not be too interested...
  • The DPAF wouldn't work properly. With the sensor/mirror at a 45 degree angle, correct focus is different between the top of the sensor and the bottom.

I don't think we'll be losing the mirrors all that soon. Not until a really high-quality EVF comes along, anyway.


6
Software & Accessories / Re: How many cards?
« on: January 10, 2014, 09:32:13 AM »
At the moment I've got a 60d and an mark5dIII.
I've got two Lexar professional 16GB 400x speed SD cards and with the mark5dIII (bought today) I bought a sandisk 16GB 400x speed. At home I thought, why did I buy a card with the mark 5dIII?
Will two cards be enough?

How much shooting do you do? Do you shoot RAW or JPEG? Answering these questions can go a long way to helping you work out whether two 16GB cards are enough.

I know that, for my shooting, that would not be enough. I have, on several occasions, filled a 32 GB card with 18MP RAW images from my 7D. That's around 1,200 RAWs. Of course, many, if not most of those, get culled out later, but when I am shooting wildlife scenes at 8FPS, I can easily fill a 32GB Card.

I recently bought a second pair of 1000x 32GB Lexar CF cards, to give me a total of 4 32GB 1000x, 3 16GB 400x, and an 8GB 400x. That's over 6,000 RAW shots. I'm not sure how many JPEGs that would be, but I'd guess at least 25,000...

For multiple-day trips, I like to be able to use different cards on different days. It seems to help me when I'm importing.

7
EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: EOS-1D X Firmware Version 2.0.3 Released
« on: January 09, 2014, 08:36:37 AM »
Cool update, Canon!  8)

Now why was I waiting for the 7DII?  :o

Oh, right, not having the extra $3,500...  :(

8
Software & Accessories / Re: how do you transfer your images?
« on: December 30, 2013, 01:25:48 PM »
External reader 99% of the time. Direct from camera only if necessary. It's not so much the wear on the USB cable, but it drains the camera batteries, as well.

I use a Hoodman Raw Steel USB3 CF/SD reader with my 7D cards. This reader is optimized for UDMA7. I've been using UDMA7 CF cards (Lexar 32GB 1000x) for more than a year now, and the speed difference on transfer is very noticeable. I can empty a 32GB UDMA7 card much faster than a 16GB non-UDMA7 card.


9
EOS Bodies / Re: 7D shutter count
« on: December 12, 2013, 09:05:28 AM »
I tried a few resources yesterday and I couldn't find a program or website that would give me the sitter count on a 7d.  I have used astro jargon before, but alas, not compatible with the 7d.

Anyone want to point me in the right direction?
I have Macs at home, and this one worked fine for my 7D:

Canon Shutter Actuation App for Mac

Plenty of others out there if you Google for "Canon EOS Shutter Count".

10
EOS Bodies / Re: 7D shutter count
« on: December 12, 2013, 09:03:26 AM »
With the announcement of the new 70D and it being a plastic body/not weather sealed, I'm inclined to go the route of a 7D. With that said, I might be interested in a used 7D while we all wait for the 7D mkii timing/details.

My question is with regards to shutter count. Is there a specific number of shutter activation that I should be wary of with a used 7D body? 15k? 30k?

Thanks!
My three-years-young 7D has about 65k, and is still going strong.

I wouldn't worry about it too much, unless you plan to shoot a lot. My understanding from this and other fora is that a replacement shutter is under or around $300. Not a terrible price to pay to keep a good camera going.

11
Software & Accessories / Re: My Dell vs iMac
« on: December 10, 2013, 09:38:43 PM »
Ok so it's quicker, but I'm still confused with Apple not mentioning SSD but only Flash, is this the same thing?
In this case, yes. I believe Apple uses the term "flash" storage to differentiate from "SSD", which has come to mean - more or less - flash-type storage built into a housing the same form factor as "HDD" storage, and with a compatible SATA interface.

In other words, they don't want you to think you can buy an off-the-shelf SSD and install it.

12
EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: SDHC vs Compactflash
« on: December 08, 2013, 12:12:43 AM »
In many cases, CF is still after than SDHC. Take your [Sandisk] "Extreme Pro" cards.

SanDisk rates the SDHC "Extreme Pro" cards at 95MB/s read, 90MB/s write. Contrast that with the SanDisk CF "Extreme Pro" cards at 160MB/s read, 150MB/s write. By my math, that makes the CFs 67% faster than the SDHC.

So, yes, you are paying as much as double, but you are getting a considerable speed boost. On the other hand, if you bought a CF card that was closer to the same speed your SD card was, the cost difference would be much less.

As for capacity, the "Extreme Pro" SD tops out at 64GB, while the same "Extreme Pro" in CF tops out 4 times that size at 256GB... There's simply more real estate to use inside the plastic on the CFs.

Names like "Extreme Pro" can't really be used across product lines for a direct comparison. You really need to dig into the specifications to be absolutely sure you're getting the same performance.

13
Pricewatch Deals / Re: The opposite of a good deal
« on: November 26, 2013, 03:30:05 PM »
Interesting.  And with a 1DX refurb, is the shutter replaced?  What else do you think gets done to refurbish it?
Most - but not all - refubished products from Canon and Apple, etc. were not out in the wild long enough to have a lot of use, or in a camera's case, shutter actuations. Most are demo cameras, functioning returns, etc. Perhaps even CPS "loaners" back from the field.

I don't think they could get away with a really "used" camera as a refurbished unit. Between the expense of refurbishing it, and the liability, it just wouldn't be worth it.

But, if there was a fault with a shutter, it would be replaced, I'm sure.

14
Pricewatch Deals / Re: The opposite of a good deal
« on: November 26, 2013, 03:22:54 PM »
I watch the Canon refurb lens "sales", and maybe I'm missing something, but the "deal" aspect in general seems to be missing.

You must not be watching closely enough  ;D

Not all of the lenses are a good deal (like some of the low end lenses, kit lenses, etc), but there are some incredible deals on L glass if you can catch them in stock during a 15-20% off sale.
Indeed! The EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II USM (yes, the II version...) is/was on "sale" for $4,963.32 (It is currently out of stock). a full 32% ($2,335.68) off the full Canon retail price of $7,299.

I'd say that was a deal, if you got it!

Also, of late, they've been offering free shipping almost all the time, and they upgraded the warranty on refurbs to a full year. Making it all a great deal, if your fingers (and credit card!) are fast enough!

15
Pricewatch Deals / Re: The opposite of a good deal
« on: November 26, 2013, 11:19:35 AM »
Did Canon's online store ever offer price matching? In most cases, Manufacturer's own stores can't offer price matching, as it would impact their retailers unfavorably. Why would one sign on as a retailer if the manufacturer could undercut you at any corner?

The best deals I've seen (so far...) were 20% off the refurb price, which is already 20% off the full retail price. You net a 36% discount off retail.

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