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Messages - neuroanatomist

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EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: AFMA Callibration - How much is too much?
« on: August 08, 2012, 03:07:21 PM »
There is some great information here. What I am not reading is that these adjustments have made a noticeable difference in IQ. Is that just implied?

One unit of AMFA is 1/8 of the depth of focus for the lens at max aperture, so an adjustment of units means your combination is off by a full depth of focus.  Whether or not that makes a difference depends on how you shoot.  If you only shoot stopped down to f/5.6 or narrower and your subjects are always relatively distant, AFMA likely will not matter.  If you shoot at wide apertures, with close subjects, basically any time the DoF is shallow, it makes a big difference.  Obviously, the amount matters, too - a 2 unit adjustment on an f/4 lens isn't going to make much difference, but a 4 unit adjustment on an f/2 or faster lens will be noticed.

Absolutely.  The increase in IQ by calibrating AFMA is staggering.  It is both quantifiable and easily noticed when shooting is the field.  If your AFMA is off by even a little bit your image IQ will drop dramatically.  I have attached a chart that plots IQ for one of my lenses through the AFMA range that was generated by foCal.  Before I calibrated this lens I was always complaining that my images looked soft at 100%.  As you can see the optimal AFMA point for this lens is +8.  I was shooting at the default of 0 and my IQ was suffering.

Right - a big difference because you were off by a full depth of focus.  But it really is lens/camera dependent.  If you look at your plot, you can see that if you set a value between 7 (or perhaps 5) and 13, there would not be a meaningful, real-world difference.  If the lens with your camera had been in the -3 to +3 range, you'd likely not have needed the adjustment at all.

But...when it's needed, it makes a huge difference.

Lenses / Re: Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Product Advisory
« on: August 08, 2012, 01:06:57 PM »
At least it is a firmware download to fix it. Wasn't the firmware update for the new great whites a return to factory job?

Yes, but in this case it might be camera firmware updates, not lens firmware. We'll see...

Lenses / Re: Canon EF 35 f/1.4L II [CR2]
« on: August 08, 2012, 12:27:22 PM »
Considering today's 35 f/1.4 is already superlative...what, aside from the price tag, will be different with the new one?

Weathersealing, new coatings, and improved corner sharpness come to mind…

Hmm, not sure I have noticed if the timeout had occurred or not.  I'll give that a try and see.  Maybe I just half press the shutter from muscle memory due to all of these years of half pressing the shutter button.   :-\

Yeah, I do that, too...and so I didn't notice it in practical use.  But when I checked, sure enough, it's there.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: 7D and 5D II that different?
« on: August 08, 2012, 11:58:08 AM »
The 7D would be a better choice if you were going to shoot sports/wildlife, but IMO, the 5DII is the clear choice for landscape and portrait use.

  • IQ of the 5DII is noticeably better. 
  • ISO noise is over a stop lower - if you shoot indoor portraits in ambient light, that's a big help.
  • The larger pixels of the 5DII mean you can stop down further before diffraction begins costing you sharpness in your landscape shots.
  • DoF is thinner on FF, which is useful for portraits (for the same framing, for the DoF you get at f/2.8 on FF, you'd need an f/1.8 lens on APS-C).
If you're shooting in good light, you can post-process the 7D images to essentially the same quality as the 5DII (except for the DoF part, since despite the new background blur tools in CS6, you can't get the same look).  But it takes a fair bit of work, and the 5DII gets it right straight out of the camera.

You can also program the 1DX to allow you to move the auto focus point by simply pressing the joy stick sideways or vertical.  There is no need to press any other buttons.  I have mine set this way and love it.

Yep - and as Rich stated above, he's got that setting enabled (as do I). 

The issue he's talking about is that when the metering timer shuts off (which is after 6-7 seconds), you can look through the VF and see the selected AF point, but moving the multicontroller does nothing.  You must half-press the shutter or press the AF-ON button, which re-engages metering, and also re-activates AF point selection.

There's a C.Fn to set the metering time out for Live View shooting, but I don't see one to extend the metering timing for VF shooting.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: 1D X EC and ISO button function swapped
« on: August 08, 2012, 11:34:19 AM »
When I press the ISO button, the ISO screen comes up.  I don't think I've ever pressed the EC/Aperture button, since just directly spinning the QCD applies EC.

But I didn't change that setting in the custom controls menu, and I'm guessing you did.   :P 

Access your custom controls menu (C.Fn5), and I bet you'll see that the QCD (one up from the bottom in the right column) is set to this (taken from p.341 of the manual):

Lenses / Re: EF 70-200 f2.8 IS L USM MKII weird noise (attached)
« on: August 08, 2012, 09:44:05 AM »
Hard to judge relative sound levels from a video or audio clip, but looking at the video posted above with the sound of moving a switch on the lens as reference, I'd say the sound made by the lens in the video is noticeably louder than my copy of the lens. 

When I say, 'can be heard in a quiet room,' I mean late at night after eveyone else is asleep quiet.  Even the noise of a ceiling fan or the AC blowing through the vents is enough to mask it.

EOS Bodies / Re: 1dx now or wait for Photokina?
« on: August 08, 2012, 09:05:40 AM »
I suspect it's almost inevitable that Canon will release a high MP body in the near future (<1 year), if only to compete with the D800.  But...I think it's unlikely that that high MP sensor will be put in a 1-series body - rather, it will be in a 5-series body and have a relatively slow frame rate (~4 fps or less). 

So, if you're looking for 1-series durability and speed, get the 1D X.  I love mine.  If you don't need robust build or a fast frame rate, but higher resolution is at the top of your list, waiting for Photokina might not be a bad idea (but in that case, you'd likely be debating the purchase of a 5DIII anyway, not a 1D X).

No need to be snotty.

Sorry, but I didn't think I was - I was asking if you'd confirmed that the advice you offered, indicating a 600EX-RT could be used to remotely trigger a monolight, or if you were making an untested assumption (if I was going to be snotty, I'd have asked if you were talking out of your ass-umptions... :P).

I have not tested what you're suggesting, so I don't know that it won't work.  So, I'm making an assumption, as well.  But, I think it's pretty likely that Canon will, at some point, release a standalone RF receiver for their new RT system, to allow compatibility with older flashes (probably a hotshoe attachment, it may or may not have a cable output port, but if not a FlashZebra hotshoe pass-through adapter would solve that for less than $20). 

To maximize their profit (and the goal of any publically held company is just that), they likely will not release such a receiver until after the 430-type RF flash is released and sales of both 600 and 430-replacement have slowed down a bit.  In the meantime, I assume that Canon will have taken steps to ensure that a simple cable attachment to the 600EX-RT with some splitters cannot be used to radio trigger a bunch of 580's from a single slaved 600 - Canon wants you to buy a bunch of 600's, of course, or failing that, wait and buy a bunch of 430-replacements, since those solutions mean more profit for them...

Lenses / Re: EF 70-200 f2.8 IS L USM MKII weird noise (attached)
« on: August 08, 2012, 08:30:04 AM »
Mine makes a similar noise, it's not very loud though - can be heard in a quiet room, not outside.  Most IS lenses make some noise when the IS system activates and deactivates.  My 24-105L, 28-300L, and 100L produce a similar sound.  My 100-400L does, as well, but it's louder, and with that lens you can actually hear the IS system operating between the start and stop sounds, sort of a faint buzz.  I had a 300/4L IS previously, and when the IS engaged/disengaged on that lens, it did so with a loud 'clunk' that could be both heard and felt, and during operation the sound was almost a low growl.

I wouldn't be concerned about it...

Depending on the size of the formation(s), a handheld flashlight (ideally held by someone else) can do the job.  These are from Actun Tunichil Muknal, in the Cayo district of Belize.  We stopped there on our way to Guatemala, and I highly recommend a visit if you're in the area (and don't mind swimming with your boots on and slogging through mud)...

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Roger Cicala on Canon Autofocus Reality
« on: August 08, 2012, 08:11:12 AM »
Definitely a great series!

Very interesting that it's a combination of new camera and newer lens design that results in the most accurate phase AF. 

Regardless, there's still a range of sharpness in a series of multiple shots, albeit narrower with the more accurate combinations.  That's one reason I love the 12 fps frame rate of the 1D X - I make it a common practice to shoot in bursts of ~4 shots, and pick the sharpest in post, and with the 1D X, that takes the same about of time as a single shot on the 5DII, or two shots on the 5DIII.  It also means I'm more likely to get a shot with no one blinking, etc.

As a side note, Roger's article quantitatively confirms a subjective impression I had developed when shooting with the 1D X - combined with the 40/2.8 pancake lens, it was harder to pick the 'best' of the 4-shot bursts based on sharpness, whereas with other lenses, such as the 24-105mm, it was easier because the shot-to-shot differences were greater.

...will influence my future buying decisions.

This is probably true for me, as well.  I'm planning to get a supertele witin a few months (500 II or 600 II, not sure yet), but I assume the new 24-70 II will also focus more accurately, and that will make that hard to resist as a walkaround lens, which would delay the supertele purchase a bit...

EOS Bodies / Re: Question - Auto focus speeds & Battery Grips
« on: August 08, 2012, 05:56:11 AM »
The 1-series bodies use higher voltage batteries, which drives the lens AF motor faster.  The two lower-voltage batteries in a grip are used alternately, not simultaneously, so no boost.

To put it in words rather than pictures (though the latter are more illustrative), in my experience from actually using the 28-300L (as opposed to reading reviews), it delivers the same IQ as the 24-105mm across the whole 11x zoom range.  Like the 24-105, it's a bit sharper at the wide end than the long end, but the wide ends and long ends of the two lenses, respectively, are very equivalent. 

Are my TS-E 24L II, 35L, and 70-200/2.8L IS II sharper?  Yes, but then, they're all sharper than the 24-105, too, and none of them have the extensive zoom range.  The drawbacks of the 28-300L as a walkaround lens, compared to the 24-105, are weight, size, and cost...not IQ.

My 2¢, after shooting with the 24-105 for a couple of years and the 28-300 for several months, on three different bodies.

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