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Messages - digital paradise

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EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Snow tubing with 5D III + 24-70 II
« on: December 31, 2012, 08:39:51 PM »
I'm from Canada and have used my gear in -30 Celsius and colder. Secret is to keep your gear cold until you are done. If I come in for hot chocolate I put out gear into the camera bag (which is outside) and zip it up. When really cold I will wrap it up with my parka as well. If I can leave it outside I will.

When done for the day I follow the above procedure. Now I will wait several hours before I open the bag. You want to warm up your gear slowly. If you expose your gear quickly you get condensation on it. No problem on the outside, it is the inside. Over time this can lead to mold growth particularly with lenses. Of course these are extremes but something to be aware of.

Check this out.

Lighting / Re: Getting started with 600EX-RT, advice?
« on: December 31, 2012, 04:07:03 PM »
Before getting too dependant on the sphere learn why your flash head rotates ;).  After going through Syl's excellent work try this site. Start in the blue column on the right - flash photography techniques.

My flash guru

That is too bad. I doubt Canon will ever do anything about the light pattern and density. That would mean a recall.

Pickup a X‑Rite ColorChecker Passport and make profiles based on the Camera body, lens and lighting conditions.

This is a good starting point... build profiles based on your needs. I think you answered your own question though, there will never be a "setting" that is universal. Only a good point from which you can evaluate and build on based on the situation.

I used to LOVE the CC passport, however with the 5d3 and 1dX the reds ALWAYS have way too much blue, and in daylight the WB is always way too warm. Any idea why? It's crazy annoying.. I can clearly see it makes the colors way more accurate, but not all and I never had this issue with the 5d2...

Once you buld the profile you can edit and save tweaks... also the WB is has to be set seperately. The profile only adjust the color profiles not the WB. Basicaly you are making profiles like Canon's Neutral, Portrait, Faithful, etc... even with the color checker its only a good starting point. The two middle rows of the passport have WB panels for cooler to warmer... The top row is for portraits, the bottom one for landscapes.

First shoot the colorchecker, then pick the WB suitable for your needs, then build the profile... check profile, tweak and resave. This should be done for every camera body+lens+lighting combo. It can be a pain but it has saved my ass on many event shoots where the lighting has been less than perfect and PP would be difficult to say the least. I usually make profiles for lighting situs with the worst being mixed light... tunsten, flourecent and flash is the biggest offender lighting wise.

Actually it's quite essential to use the built in greycard to get a perfect WB BEFORE you shoot the CC. The manual also states that the WB can't be set afterwards. You can correctly warm or cool it, but it still has to be correct when on location. The problem is that the greycard gives me way too warm WB, and when I apply the profile and compare (yes my screen is calibrated, and monitored every 5 minutes) it gives colors that doesn't match the real life colors, and it ALWAYS did with the 5d2, in fact, I can shoot with my girlfriends 5d2 now and get correct wb and colors.

I purchased the passport but don't use it. I find the blues over-saturated. I was testing it on my wife's hand. Here sweater was teal but it came out blue. So did several blue articles on the table. Too blue. Maybe I'm doing something wrong.   

This is one I was really impressed with.

Can you explain which brush you are using to desaturate the skin tones only? Thanks in advance.   

I find that the "camera calibration" settings for my 5diii are best on neutral when shooting scenes with skin tones in them.  You will have to add some contrast back into the scene after changing this but it's worth it.

I find that scenes with skin tones are the most difficult to adjust.  Here is my work flow for wedding photos:

1) Get the skin exposure right with the exposure slider
2) Get the color temp, this is often the hardest one of the bunch!
3) Adjust the white and black sliders while holding down the cntrl key so that whites are pure white and blacks are pure black.  This kind of stretches the DR a bit and adds contrast.
4) I will usually bump the vibrance up to 40-50 and the saturation to 10-15 to start.  Doing this screws up the skin tones so I will go into the color saturation panel and use the dropper to click on the skin and draw down the saturation of just the skin tones.  (I have a couple of presets for this and will tweak the presets for each wedding couple)  This process adds the "pop" to the colors.
5) Add a little bit of contrast.  You can do this with the slider but I find that adjusting the curve to an S curve is more natural.  (just use the pre-programed curves)  The amount of contrast is going to depend on the lighting and on your lens.
6) Tweak the white and black sliders again to get the final effect i'm looking for.
7) Tweak the noise reduction with the picture at 100%

Obviously I jump around these steps and use a little different settings based on lighting but for a "standard" picture this is basically it.  Some might say that colors (particularly reds) become too saturated using these settings so you have to adjust for the scene but most people today are looking for the photos that "pop" rather than a very natural look.

FYI, I also use a 50d for weddings and the settings are totally different for it.  The tones are rendered very differently between the two cameras.  Most of the photos I take with the 50d end up as black and whites.

I used to hate Adobe colours but they have come a long way in the last few years especially (as mentioned) adding camera profiles. When I compare DPP set to faithful and LR to faithful on my screen I find they are pretty close. Adobe is still a little stronger on the yellow but much improved.

For skin tones I use a simple preset. I first make sure I'm on faithful adjust exposure (if needed) and my preset is

Clarity - 10
Vibrance +10
Saturation - 10

I then adjust black do get back that contrast/punch lost in my preset and make slight adjustments on the basic panel as required. Now you do lose a little sharpness but it really smooths out the skin tones and hides minor defects. Depending on how much editing you have to do you can do a little selective sharpening around the eyes, etc but for mass edits it is impractical unless you want to spend all that time. I will do it if really necessary but I find the output sharpening using LR does a pretty good job at the end.

I have seen some work amazing work by people. Not sure what PP software they use but they get the skin tones so natural and creamy looking. I'll try to find a link if can. I'm still trying to figure that one out.       

I am interested in step 4 of your process. I might play with that after my process to add a little more punch to my images if I can get the skin tones back to where they were.

Thanks for the info!                   

AI Focus does. AI Servo does not. 

Guys remember designing a work around isn't the way forward, There shouldn't be a need to have to work around a problem that basically should not exist in the first place, Im worried that the problem may start to become overshadowed by "what we all can do instead" I really am hoping for this tread to get heard, its a real problem and I do not believe for a moment it only happens in certain cameras (ie other 5D3's don't have this problem) its a problem with the 5D3 itself and needs to be addressed,

I would like to say thanks to everyone that has of course offered help in ideas making it easier while we wait for answers, but let us not forget the true problem exists and needs to be fixed,


Amen. Band-Aids are never the solution. It is not our responsibility to solve this.   

I too have seen this issue but get around it 99% of the time by using servo focus.  With moving subjects at wedding receptions, this is often the better approach anyway.  You certainly have to move the autofocus point around and can't recompose once locked.  This seems to work better with my sigma 50mm 1.4 than it does with the 70-200 presumably because of the extra light at max aperture. 

My personal opinion is that using servo in this fashion is still much better than the hit or miss focus of my 50d even with the assist light.  It was like rolling the dice with the 50d when focusing with the 50 1.4.

In summary...this issue is painful, but not a showstopper for wedding photography.

You must mean AI Focus. The assist beam does not work in AI Servo. I never use AI Focus.
Wonder how that works? I guess when the subject is stationary it works but when the system detects the subject in motion it does not? I'll have to check my cameras manual.         

This is from this site

An important thing to remember is that the AF assist light works only if your camera is in One-shot mode - it will not illuminate in AI Servo or in any icon AE mode which employs AI Servo, such as the Sports mode. This is because the camera is constantly focussing and refocussing when in AI Servo mode, in order to track subject motion.

I am a wedding photographer and have shot 25 weddings and receptions this year with the 5D3 and 600ex.  I started a thread about this issue about a month ago and I finally sent my camera in to Canon to get the shutter replaced and the light leak issue resolved and I specifically complained about it the AF assist beam.  When they sent it back they mentioned they made some "electrical adjustments" to the shutter and AF.  They never acknowledged there was a problem or said that they did anything to fix it.  I haven't shot a wedding since then so I haven't gotten a chance to really test it out yet but I did some quick tests and sometimes there appears to be some improvement.  Other times it still seems slow.  I don't think there is a way to know until I shoot a wedding again.  I do think it is interesting they didn't even acknowledge there was a problem and always say it is the first they have heard of the issue.

Yeah they are probably told to say that until they figure out what is going on. Even if they do a recall would probably be too expensive if firmware can't fix it so they may never say yes it is an issue. We will have to keep up to date on your findings and posts.  Only a few times I can remember a recall.

At Canon Forums but one person sent it in an Canon told them it was due to dust in AF sensor. When it came back it made little difference.   
Thanks for your help. 

EOS Bodies / Re: 6D vs 5Diii vs 5Dii - Speedlite AF Focus Beam Assist Tests
« on: December 12, 2012, 11:10:41 AM »
Someone stated this is not working. Images are OOF. It may be on Canon forums. I have to say. I keep testing this and it and I think it is working.

Only time it takes an extra second is when I really put the lens OOF on purpose. It takes second the the USM to bring it home. Even them my shot was in prefect focus.

I'm going to continue testing this. I have not gone live with this yet. More tests from other people would be helpful.

I just thought of something while writing this. I had also read that the first time on a new subject the AF assist would take 3 times but then once achieved it was quick. So if unsure off AF consistency do the full press for the first shot then half press for subsequent shots. I'm going to try it out.

This may be an excellent "temporary" solution but I'm still won't be thrilled about changing my shooting style.         

There must be 5 threads on this subject :)

I'm getting mixed results. Lsat night I threw my 600 on my 7D and it was pretty much normal. Then I put it on my 5D3 and I was getting great acquisition. Just about the same speed as my 7D. Tried again this morning and was good again. Last week it took 3 blinks to achieve focus quite a few times.
I'm testing both with half pressing the shutter and a full press. The full press is instant (before AF beep goes off) and I'm find all my images are in focus. 

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