September 02, 2014, 04:14:19 PM

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Messages - thepancakeman

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1
Reviews / Re: Consumer Reports: Canon G1X MK2 Best Ever
« on: Today at 11:10:30 AM »
You can't trust Consumer Reports opinion on cameras. Back in the day, when the majority of Pros were using the Nikon F, Consumer Reports said it was the worst camera.

If you gave Consumer Reports a Canon 1D X to test, they wouldn't like it. They know nothing of photography, and treat cameras like toasters or hair dryers.

Actually, you can trust them, you just need to know who they are rating products for.  A My Nikon F would be a horrible experience for a general consumer, as would a D1X.

It would be really poor advice to recommend that a ordinary Consumer looking for a camera buy a D1 X.  It is for Pros as was the Nikon F.

A Sony RX100 III likewise is not a top camera for a ordinary consumer who expects a 5-1 zoom range.  It does not even cover portrait focal lengths, its pretty much a enthusiast camera.  That does not mean it isn't a fine camera, just that its not the best pick for a general consumer.

While this defense of CU may have merit for cameras due to complexity, I stopped caring what they said about most anything many years ago when they did loudspeakers (plug and play--no user complexities to deal with) and their worst rated speaker was the same won that was winning awards in the audio world.  Apparently didn't have enough "boom" and "sizzle" for them.   :o

2
Canon General / Re: Some wait for 7d2 other do great without it.
« on: August 29, 2014, 10:49:43 AM »
While it is a very cool video, not sure what the 7D2 has to do with it, other than simply trying to sucker people in and/or start a fight.   ???

3
EOS Bodies / Re: Are These The EOS 7D Mark II Specifications?
« on: August 22, 2014, 08:21:15 PM »
This inspires me...to get a 5D3 (if the specs here are true.)   :-\

4
EOS Bodies / Re: A Bit of EOS 7D Replacement Info [CR2]
« on: August 11, 2014, 09:03:38 PM »
Seeing as how Wifi was one of only 2 features I was looking for in upgrading my 7D, this could very well be a deal breaker for me.   :-\

5
Business of Photography/Videography / Who owns the photo?
« on: August 07, 2014, 12:35:38 PM »
I know we've had this discussion here before but couldn't find the old thread.  Sounds like we may get some legal clarification after this:

http://news.msn.com/offbeat/who-owns-this-monkey%E2%80%99s-selfie-1

Short version:  monkey took selfies, Wiki argues that makes it public domain.  Photographer, or more accurately in this case--camera owner--says he owns the rights.

6
Reviews / Re: DxO reviews Sony A7s: king of low light photography?
« on: August 05, 2014, 12:27:05 PM »
I just add noise using Photoshop's "Add Noise" filter. That adds noise with a pixel-level frequency...or, in other words, per-pixel noise. It's a VERY minimal amount, you have to squint to see it, as it really isn't supposed to be obvious, and as such, is effectively meaningless in the midtones through highlights/whites.

The general point of this is to smooth out the harsh transitions that usually occur in the shadows due to low bit depth and quantization error during ADC. If you examine lifted shadows, from any camera (including, and maybe even particularly, a D800 or other camera with a Sony Exmor), you will very often notice a bit of posterization. Adding a very light amount of noise breaks that up, which helps improve gradient transitions and such in the shadows. It can also help artificially enhance detail that may otherwise look like smooth blobs due to noise reduction algorithms (this can especially be a problem if you did any noise reduction with masking, so you could apply NR more heavily in the shadows than in the midtones and highlights).

This just made this whole thread worth reading.  Brilliant!  (and thanks!)

7
Insurance is a casino game between you and the insurance company in which the odds are stacked in their favour. Many years ago, I was given the advice that you insure yourself only against events that happen very rarely and are too expensive for you to cover. If you can afford to replace your gear, then don't insure it because the insurance companies have the odds stacked in their favour - they make a profit because on average the insurance premiums cost more than the cost of repairs and losses.

So I take it that you don't insure your house or car either?  Of course insurance companies are out to make a profit, they can't provide that service for free!  The model is for them to spread the risk over many in hopes of reducing their risks and keeping the premiums lower for everyone in the group.  That's just how it works.




If his house is not too expensive for him to replace with pocket change, he would be ahead to not insure it.  I stop insuring my cars, except for liability once they are a few years old, its a losing bet.  I once had a homeowners insurance loss of about $5,000.  This was after paying insurance for 40 years with no losses.  The insurance company cancelled my policy.  I lost a lot of $$ on that, If I'd have invested that insurance $$$ in the bank for 40 years, I could buy a new house.  Of course, by mortgage company would not allow that.


Life insurance is the same story.  Bet a insurance company that you will die, and you will most likely lose.  They know the odds, and always win.


Many larger companies are self insured, or only purchase insurance for catastrophic losses, they know the cost well.

I have some rather wealthy friends that recently claimed that home owners insurance was a middle-class invention.  I'm not sure if they've changed their tune after their home burned to the ground.   ???

8
Lenses / Re: Best short telephoto?
« on: July 08, 2014, 10:59:28 AM »
There really are not many lens options that fit your needs. For outdoor sports 55-250 STM seems unbeatable for its size.

Canon 70-300DO is very compact when at 70mm, but the price is absurd for the mediocre image quality.
500mm mirror lens with manual focus only would be torture to track movements.
Canon 135L is great, if the object distance is adequate.
Canon 100mm F2 is also very good for sports in the proper distance.

I will not recommend anything like 18-200 (any manufacturer), 18-270, Tamron 28-300, since all of them are below the very good 55-250 STM.

Thanks for the great summation!  I think I'm going to narrow it down to the 55-250 and 500mm mirror for this go round.  I'll post results when I get back in a few weeks.

9
Lenses / Re: Best short telephoto?
« on: July 06, 2014, 01:37:29 PM »
Think what you will about the Lumix camera (and others like it), but in the end it gets the job done. Isn't that the whole point?

Getting the job done is the point.  That said, it would help if the OP had indicated what 'the job' is...a 'sporting event' is not very descriptive. 

Yup, I did add another post with more details--it's the CrossFit games, so mostly not super fast moving, at least from a sports perspective, and it will be outdoors in California.  Given this scenario, should I be taking a look at the Lumix?

Okay, I'm having a really difficult time getting past the whole concept here.

The OP is planning to go to one sporting event, and wants to buy a lens based on the length of its barrel, without any consideration as to what other lenses he already owns or would like to own and what he ordinarily shoots.

I'm guess I'm not quite sure why this is a difficult concept.  Sure, I could list out all the lenses that I own, what I like and dislike about them, what other things I take pictures of and under what conditions, but I think that's pretty extraneous to the discussion other than that I don't have one that is going to accomplish what I'm looking for.

So far the list seems pretty darn short: the 55-250, the 135/2.0 and a 500mm mirror lens.    Obviously I will evaluate these as to how well they fit in with my style and existing equipment, but to ask someone else to make sense of that for a simple "short telephoto lens" question seems excessive. 


If you really care, I shoot primarily sports and some portraiture, and only have one lens that I love--the 70-200mm f/2.8 IS Mark I.  I don't care for the 24-105L, and also have but am unimpressed with the 85 1.8, the 50 1.8, the 100 2.8 macro, the Tamron 17-55 2.8.  I shoot almost exclusively with natural lighting and prioritize a narrow depth of field and good contrast over pure sharpness.  But nd as far as sharpness goes, the center is all I care about, as I don't do anything that requires corner sharpness. 

But I don't see how this info would change the recommendations people have provided above.  Sorry if this comes across snotty--I'm kinda in a grumpy mood this morning.   :-\

10
Lenses / Re: Best short telephoto?
« on: July 05, 2014, 12:35:38 PM »

The problem is that sporting events usually need a fast shutter speed, and the light is not all that bright.  Combine that with the poor low light performance of APS-C, and its poor for that use.
A FF body with at least a f/4 lens is head and shoulders better.
A Canon 135mm f/2L might be a good choice for a crop or FF.


Agreed - if low light is an issue then going with a FF body is the way to go.  I just thought I'd mention the EF-S 55-250 as food for thought, as the OP hasn't said what the lighting conditions are likely to be.  For example it's if it's an open air stadium and the players will be in bright sunlight, the 55-250 might work.  I took some photos at the Australian Open tennis in January and the conditions were exactly like that.  I was shooting with a 6D and an f/4 lens, but from the lighting point of view a crop body and the 55-250 would have been fine.

Sorry about the lack of details!  It's for the CrossFit games which is at outdoor stadiums in California--should be bright and sunny. 

The 55-250 sounds like a good option for the extra reach as I will be using a 7D, but I'm tempted by the 135 as well.  I'm taking it one of these options with potentially heavy cropping would still produce a better results than a superzoom?  Is the 55-250 better than other options in that same class, such as the new Tamrons?

If you're familiar with the CrossFit games, although some of it can be fast moving, much of it is pretty slow movement in relation to other sports, so between the hopefully sunny skies and some options for slower shutter speeds that does open up the possibilities.


Thanks again!

11
Lenses / Re: Best short telephoto?
« on: July 04, 2014, 02:05:47 AM »
Yeah but concert hall have those rules for IP reasons mostly, this is a sport event...as long as he doesn't bring a broacasting unit he should be fine :D

Actually, I mis-spoke, it's not the venue itself but the people putting on the event, and they have a reputation for being quite strict on this and litigious about photographs.  I just want them for my own purposes, so I'm not worried about that but from what I hear it's unlikely that I'll get anything oversized in, and would actually be asked to leave if I snuck it in.

12
Lenses / Best short telephoto?
« on: July 03, 2014, 10:45:09 PM »
Here's a bit of a strange question:

I'm soon going to be attending a sporting event that the venue restrictions disallow "lenses longer than 5 inches".  So what are the best options for getting as much reach as possible, but staying under that threshold?  I'm open to lenses or superzooms or whatever is going to get me results.

Thanks!

13
Lenses / Re: The sharpness curse!
« on: June 22, 2014, 05:17:09 PM »
I can whole-heartedly agree.  In terms of vision, sharpness is generally targeted for 20/20.  After my lasics surgery, my vision was 15/20 (i.e. really sharp.) 

However, if I had to do it all over again, I'm not sure I would do it because the loss in contrast and dynamic range, the halo's on lights, etc. are a pretty big sacrifice just to get "sharpness".

14
Lenses / Re: New EF-S Ultrawide Coming? [CR1]
« on: May 05, 2014, 04:32:05 PM »
Stupid rumor. Sorry I cannot believe it.

C'mon man, it is the year of the lens; this might be THE lens!  :D

15
Thanks for the work you put in! 

However, I think a better use of these photos (or a new set!) would be a "pick which lens" in which we are not told which image was from which lens and see how consistent the "oversaturated" and "better bokeh" type comments are to each lens.   ???

EDIT:  Probably have to strip off the EXIF too to avoid cheaters.   ;)
That would just be cruel!  I think it would be tough to tell them apart with the exception of the LED shots.  Home Theater Magazine did this years ago (a double-blind test) comparing high end ($1,000) speaker cable vs. zip cord (cheap hardware store electrical wiring) and no one, audiophile or not, could tell the difference.  It was pretty funny.

I have done stuff like that with comparative lenses, and formats, people can never see what they believe they will be able to see. Even the most strident.

Yup, that was kind of my point--people will see what they want to see.


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