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Messages - Hillsilly

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541
Lenses / Re: A set of lenses for around the world travel.
« on: December 28, 2011, 01:18:08 AM »
I've also got a carabiner hanging from one of the straps on my camera bag.  If I'm in a busy cafe, I'll click it around the leg of a table.  Makes it a little harder for someone to pick up your bag unnoticed.

542
Lenses / Re: Travel advice - which lenses?
« on: December 28, 2011, 01:08:47 AM »
Its a pity that the 55-250 is an EF-S lens (which means also bringing the 40D) as it might be handy and doesn't weigh too much.  But you'll be surprised how close you can get to kangaroos and an 85mm will work fine a lot of the time. 

543
Lenses / Re: A set of lenses for around the world travel.
« on: December 27, 2011, 12:14:29 AM »
There's been a lot of good suggestions already, so I'll just discuss my personal thoughts.

I've done a lot of travel in the last couple of years.  Nearly all of this has been with a 30D.  Everyone above is right.  A 5Dii is "better" than a 450D.  But I look back at my photos from a crop camera and I don't feel any regrets.  I love the ways my photos have turned out.  If you look in magazines and on the net, some excellent photos are taken with a 450D.  The only reason I'd consider changing is if you are doing a lot of low light photography as the 5Dii has a clear advantage.  The other significant advantage of a full frame camera - shallower depth of field - is less relevant for travel photos.  Usually, you don't want to blur the background totally.  Instead, you'll want to leave a hint that you are somewhere exotic.  Crop cameras can actually do this better, as you can use a wide aperture and still have more of the background in focus.  I'd only consider changing cameras if your finances are in top shape.  If you're concerned about having enough spending money, save it so that you can have more fun. 

South America and Central America scream wildlife photos to me.  Are you sure a 7D with a 1.6 crop factor and great autofocus isn't a better option?  The 7D also has more weather sealing, which might be useful if caught out in a storm.

Until recently, my usual travel kit was a 30D, 10-22, 50, 70-200 f/4 IS, plus batteries, charger, filters, flashes, memory cards, tripod, laptop, small external HDD.  I'd be prepared for nearly everything except serious wildlife photography.  But after the second or third day, I'd generally have the same thought - "NEXT TIME I WON"T PACK SO MUCH!!"  (Although I still haven't learnt...).  It seems that you’re planning on taking more than I would, so I'll just mention two problems.  First the weight.  You've travelled to South America before and must know about the 35 degree heat and 100% humidity.  Are you sure you want to carry another 5 - 8kg of camera and computer gear? 

The second problem is the stress of taking it all.  You can't take it everywhere with you all the time.  There will be occasions when you will want to go to dinner, nightclubs, or a carefree walk around town.  That often means leaving your camera gear and laptop in your hotel room.  You'd be very unlucky to have problems, but if you're like most people, you'll worry a lot about it and it will spoil the trip a bit.  A lot of people end up with a small day pack that they take everywhere.  But that idea gets very tired very quickly.  My solution is to store expensive gear amongst my dirty socks and laundry.  Or to stash it on top of a cabinet or under a drawer.  No thief would ever think of looking there....

Also, get more opinions about taking a tripod.  The times I use mine, it’s invaluable.  They're really useful for taking self-portraits in remote locations when you’re on your own and photos at night.  But they are heavy and take up a lot of room.  With a bit of ingenuity, you can often find another way to brace your camera.

Therefore, my “Do what I say, not what I do” advice would be to take less stuff and reconsider any expensive new purchases.   

Also, you haven’t mentioned if you’re male or female and if you have a wife or a girlfriend.  If you don’t have one, I’d ditch the new lens and get a wife or girlfriend as an accessory.  They can be really handy as they almost always carry handbags.  Each morning can start off with the same conversation.  “Honey, do you mind if I put the 70-200 in your handbag”.  This also allows you to double your carry-on luggage allowance.  If you're a girl, just find a boyfriend that's chivalrous enough to carry your camera bag everywhere for you.  (If you don't have a boyfriend or girlfriend to take with you, make it your first priority to find one upon landing and they can also act as a a tour guide and interpreter.) 

Even better, get a baby.  Strollers are really useful for transporting equipment around town.  Plus they will also increase your carry-on allowance.  Even better, with the exception of some minor fees, they generally fly for free.  I can't think of any downsides to taking a baby on a six month backpacking trip through South America.

544
Lenses / Re: Canon 10-22 vs Canon 17-40
« on: December 23, 2011, 04:56:37 PM »
Personally, I'd opt for the 10-22.  It's a significantly different focal length to your other lenses and will complement them well.  It's a good, sharp lens and you can have a lot of fun with it.  There is also a lot of interest in this lens on the second hand market. Its going to retain most of its value should you move to a 5Diii.

545
Maybe Canon has something special in mind with the fixed lens idea?  There's a picture of the Canonet 28 on the front page.  Maybe that's a hint?  Or a clue?  or both?  I hate it when CanonRumors teases us like this!

Perhaps Canon are planning a full frame replica of the Canonet?  While the 28 (pictured) would be ok, I hope they do it properly and go with the QL17 or QL19 GIII.  I wonder if they've still got the Canonet factory mothballed somewhere?  They just have to dust off the cobwebs and work out how to whack in a 1DX sensor and an LCD and could be knocking these babies out in a few months.  They'd sell like hotcakes!

546
EOS Bodies / Re: Upgrading from 5d... 1ds2 or 5d2
« on: December 20, 2011, 11:47:43 PM »
For your main selection criteria (High ISOs), the 5D2 is the better choice.  The 1Ds2 tops out at 3200.  And at 1600 it isn't that great, whereas the 5D2 seems fine at 1600 and you can push it up to 25,600.

I'd consider the 1Ds2 if you are shooting a lot of activity or moving subjects (better and faster autofocus and 5 frames per second) or if you needed a rugged, go anywhere, reliable body.  Plus it has a longer lasting battery and faster flash synch.  Overall, the 1Ds2 is a better built camera than the 5D2, but then the 5D2 has more features (eg video) and is more versatile, better LCD, is llighter, and goes to higher ISOs.  And if you buy a new one, it comes with a warranty.  The 5D2 is the logical choice.
 
But, should your photography be constrained by logical choices?  The 1Ds2 is still a great camera to use.  It only does one thing - it takes great pictures at lowish ISO's.  And it does this extremely well.  If that is what you're after, I'd say grab one.  Then in three months time, you won't be kicking yourself for not waiting for the 5D3.  Instead, you can sit back smugly with the knowledge that your camera is as good as it gets for image taking - at least until the used 1Ds3's become more affordable. 

547
When people talk about EF compatability, I think we're all referring to an adapter between the camera and the lens (Essentially, just like an extension tube) that allows autofocus.  An EF lens wouldn't be the usual lens that people would use, just an extra capability if you wanted it.  Canon really only has to design a few lenses to kick things off.  A wide, medium and a tele prime lens with big apertures, and a normal zoom as the kit lens.

One advantage of redesigning the mount is that they can reconsider the optimal lens / sensor distance and come up with some great wide angles.   

548
As another thought, has anyone not looked at the Leica M9 and thought, "If only Canon could do something similar but with autofocus and at 1/3 the cost". 

I think that's where Fuji is heading next year.  And that will be really interesting.   

549
Maybe I am under-educated in this, but what does the mirror do other than make the image visible in the viewfinder?  And if it does do something other than that, does not having a mirror decrease performance?

Yes.  That's all the mirror does.  But it is a little more complex as SLRs have their autofcus sensors positioned above the mirror.  Mirrorless cameras take a different approach and rely on the LCD screen at the back of the camera (like a point and shoot camera), or have an electronic viewfinder to replicate the SLR viewfinder.  They use a different method for autofocus.  There is a marginal performance loss as it takes a tiny fraction of a second longer for the image to appear in the viewfinder compared to a regular SLR.  This isn't ideal when shooting action scenes.  Traditionally, autofocus has also suffered, but newer mirrorless cameras seem to have solved this.  The Olympus EP3 claims to have faster and more accurate autofocus than all DSLRs.

While there is a small delay with electronic viewfinders, they do have benefits.  You get to see the whole picture, they are nice and bright and you see the image exactly as it will be photographed.  So, like most things, there are positives and negatives.

I'm not totally surprised that Canon hasn't jumped on board.  There are a lot of other players out there and none seem to have been highly successful financially.  Besides, I've got a little Olympus EPL-1 that I love.  If Canon was to release a similar model with EF compatibility, my loyalty would be tested - not a position I really want to be in.

550
Canon General / Re: The Jump To Full Frame
« on: December 18, 2011, 09:48:44 PM »
This was my thinking in deciding on a 1Ds Mk ii, too.  But the 5D Mk ii has some benefits and its not easy to declare a clear winner.   The 5D Mk ii is lighter and newer and has video capabilities.  It performs much better at higher ISOs.  Supposedly, its jpegs are bit sharper straight out of the cameras and its LCD is better.  But if all you want to do is take photos at low-ish ISOs, the 1Ds is as good as it gets and is surprisingly simple to use.  You can't go wrong with either.   

551
Canon General / Re: The Jump To Full Frame
« on: December 18, 2011, 05:04:59 AM »
Was in a similar situation recently and picked up a used 1Ds Mk ii.  It has its pros and cons compared to a 5Dii, but was the right decision for me with a tougher body and faster autofucus and response times.   But obviously it lacks video and I'm finding battery maintenance a little tedious.  I'm liking the move from a 30D. 

552
EOS Bodies / Re: Earthshatteringly Disappointed With 7D
« on: December 15, 2011, 12:59:21 AM »
Here are some landscape photos taken with this "unacceptable" camera. 

http://500px.com/alwaysbj182

That I can't do this with my 7D, or that you can't do this with yours, is not the fault of the camera.


I'm impressed.

553
EOS Bodies / Re: Should i go for the 1DX or the 5D Mk III?
« on: December 14, 2011, 09:47:14 PM »
As I look out the window and see the rain bucket down, I think of all those photographers out there now capturing photos of someone's wedding.   I hope they're using a camera that isn't going to breakdown or get wrecked if it inadvertently gets too wet.  If you livelihood depends on you being at a particular place at a particular time ready to take photos in a wide range of conditions and weight or cost isn’t an issue, get the meanest, toughest guy on the block.  1DX.

554
Australia / Re: Finally, cheap cameras in Australian shops
« on: December 14, 2011, 03:53:26 AM »
I've also bought a number of items from CamerasDirect.  I've never had any problems and think they are great.  They're located in a comercial section of Labrador, which is a suburb on the Gold Coast.  Their office isn't flash. but very business-like (one of the reasons they can keep costs down).  The service is always fast and professional and they carry a lot of stock in their warehouse.  Its not just an online shop.  They're open to the public and you can always go there  to pick the item up.

Being in Brisbane, I find them very handy.  Just a quick trip down the freeway.

However it is grey market and for a lot of this year, there prices crept up a bit and they weren't that much cheaper than shops selling "Australian" stock.  But they've sharpened up their pricing recently and are running a 5% disount right now.  I ordered a new lens from them on Monday and hopefully will find time to pick it up tomorrow!

555
United States / Re: $100,000 - How would you spend it?
« on: December 12, 2011, 01:10:05 AM »
If I could only spend it on photography related things or not get it, I'd consider early retirment and back myself with a commercial / architectual photography venture, with:

$10k on courses
$10k on cameras (1Ds Mk iii and 5D)
$15k on lenses (14, 24, 85, 135, 16-35, 70-200, 17 & 24mm tilt shifts)
$10k on lighting equipment, tripods
$15k rent on very small office / studio (I find it difficult to work at home)
$10k on office fitout, signage
$10k on computer equipment, monitor and software
$5k on printer and toner and paper
$10k Advertising
$5k wages for pretty part-time assistant until I go broke six months later.

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