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Messages - thepancakeman

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EOS Bodies / Re: Why I need MPs
« on: December 10, 2011, 01:02:52 AM »
Don't you actually want higher resolution and more detail?  And, you believe that you get that from more MP's?

Okay, maybe I'm confused, but aren't higher resolution and more megapixels the same thing?   ???

Due to the effects of lens diffraction, you reach a point where smaller pixel size does not yield more resolution or detail. 

There seems to be some debate as to whether we have reached the diffraction limits of current lenses at 18ish MPs, but I'm not really looking to debate the technical feasbility of it.  I'm asking whether or not an increase in MPs would increase my ability to get printable results in my circumstances or if there are simply usage/technique changes that I need to make.  Some of these crops are all the way down around 1200x800 which is questionable for even a 5x7 print.

If you are making money from landscape photography, perhaps your work will pay for a move.  If its for personal use, your finances are going to determine that.

I think I'm hopeless as a landscape photographer even if I wanted to be one.   :'(  As it is, I'm just earning enough to "support the habit" doing sports event photography.

EOS Bodies / Re: Why I need MPs
« on: December 10, 2011, 12:02:33 AM »
And for the originals...

EOS Bodies / Why I need MPs
« on: December 10, 2011, 12:01:45 AM »
Just because I like to throw fuel on the flame...

There are so many discussions about needing more megapixels with strong proponents on each side, I thought I'd join the fray with some specific examples (especially because it seems like most of the "I need MPs" side is landscape photographers of which I am most definitely not.)

Below I am posting the crop image and then the original.  Again, my context is that capturing a decent shot of every athlete in the race is my number one priority.  There is little to no time to worry about doing anything artistic, and often even a basic reframing of the shot is more work that I seem to have time for.  So some of these are cropped because I think there is artistic value in the a portion of the original image (and 500 shots of "runner...runner...runner...runner" gets old without some creativity ::) ), or as one example shows, simply to isolate the given athlete.

I'm open to contructive criticism if there are things I could do differently to reduce or eliminate my "need" for more MPs (or any other photographic/artistic feedback).

Software & Accessories / Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« on: December 09, 2011, 05:54:30 PM »
Since this was my idea, I guess I'd better play too.

One of my favorite tricks (stolen from Kelby) is "smart objects."

With almost all of my images, I process them first in RAW aiming for the best overall exposure possible. Then, I open the file as a smart object and make a duplicate smart object in Photoshop. I then open that second file in RAW and work on areas that need a bit more of something (for example, I may adjust the exposure, blacks, brightness, contrast etc. to get a little more detail in the shadow areas or in the highlights)

I send the second layer back to Photoshop, put a mask on it and paint in or out the areas that I want to fix.

I sometimes do this with three or even four layers. It's amazingly simple once you get used to it (although it makes for some big file sizes) and I find the results much nicer and easier to control than using the burn and dodge tools in Photoshop. (With dodge and burn you are basically just lightening or darkening a section with little control. By reprocessing the file in RAW you have access to the full range of adjustments)

I'll usually save a file with all the layers intact, just in case I need to go back and rework something later.

Nice!  I'm gonna have to try that one.

Software & Accessories / Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« on: December 09, 2011, 05:01:35 PM »
I'll bite... while this is a post raw filter, I love the topaz filters... from topaz denoise to adjust... adjust is good at giving a little pop and expanding DR and can even do faux HDR if you want to push it that far, Detail is very good at sharpening, denoise goes without saying... I use them when finishing an image to give a good photo a "wow" affect...

Excuse the ignorance, but...huh??   :o  I honestly have on idea what you're saying; can you expand/explain a little more?

And maybe for the thread as a whole, provide before and after examples so we can see the results?

EOS Bodies / Beauty is in the eye of the beholder?
« on: December 09, 2011, 02:38:14 PM »
Wasn't sure whether to add this to one of several existing threads or start a new one, so here we go.  This touches on topics in the "earthshattering disappointment of 7D" the contest images and several others.

Obviously there are differences in taste:  some people like landscapes, some prefer photos of people; some like color, some like black and white, etc. etc.

My theory is that beyond taste, people have different sensitivies to various "imperfections".  It's kind of hard to explain, but essentially while one person may be driven nuts by noise, another person may not even see the noise but go bonkers because of a slight barrel distortion.  Some may be sensitive to CA (chromatic abberation), and others notice every weakness in DR (dynamic range).

Reading thru the 7D disappointment thread, some people are like "yuck, noise!" and others are like "looks fine to me."  I wonder if this isn't partly do to the phenomenon I'm suggesting.  Personally I see a fair amount of noise on those photos and it bothers me, but some of the other "issues" that people pointed out do not phase me in the slightest.  One of the features mentioned as a selling point for DxO was that it can automatically correct lens distortions.  My response is "lenses have distortions??"  Obviously I know that is true and can see it when pointed out to me, but I am not even slightly sensitive to it.  Not too long ago I saw a person complain that long shutter times on water (creating the smooth look) were terrible because that's not "how the eye sees."  I think eye does not freeze time at all, so neither smooth nor sharp water would be what the eye actually sees but obviously that hits something to which he or she is more sensitive to.


Contests / Re: *UPDATE* First Contest Finalists Up
« on: December 09, 2011, 12:43:19 PM »
Huh, that's kinda funny, because after going back and looking thru the submissions and pick on astro and underwater, I was about to compliment CR guy for how good his picks were.  With a possible exception or two, I think he was pretty right on.

And if you don't like the parameters of the contest, which are "CR guy narrows it down to 10" then pick a different contest.  Nothing says he has to have the same tastes as any of the rest of us.

EOS Bodies / Re: Earthshatteringly Disappointed With 7D
« on: December 09, 2011, 11:19:41 AM »
I find that with a lot of work, I can manage to get 7D files post-processed to the point where the IQ is close to those from my 5DII...but that's straight out of the camera from the 5DII.

I'm reading this thread with great interest, as I also just snagged a 7D but have not opened it yet as I'm nervous about these types of issues and being a refurb from Canon I cannot return it once opened.  So anyway...

What is "a lot of work" exactly?  Again, my context is shooting athletes in a race, so I may have 500 nearly identical shots (500 different runners or cyclists)--can I do the "a lot of work" once and then copy and paste the develop settings to the other 499 (in Lightroom) or would it differ for each photo and I would have to do "a lot of work" 500 times?

EOS Bodies / Re: 5D mkii at $2,219 on Amazon today (12-7)
« on: December 08, 2011, 03:41:10 PM »
As for the country- we have our share of shady businesses and no-goodniks too, but we try to train the latter to be NHL enforcers.

Hahaha!  That just made my whole day!   ;D

Canon General / Re: 15% Off at Canon Refurbished Store
« on: December 07, 2011, 11:00:26 PM »
I'm in MN and I was charged tax.  I cannot speak for other states, but it is typical (and for sure in MN) that when you file your state taxes, there is a section to declare out of state purchases (internet or mail order) so you can be taxed for them.  If you want details, talk a tax accountant, not us random people on the internet.   ::)

Australia / Re: ND filters
« on: December 07, 2011, 04:46:10 PM »
So here's a question--how do you decide which lens(es) to get ND filters for?  So far I pretty much suck at anything but sports photography, but I'm having fun playing.  My wife has a whole bunch o' lenses (see my sig) that I can play with and the ND filters look like fun.  Any suggestions?

EOS Bodies / Re: How can Nikon remain in business with 12MP FF?
« on: December 06, 2011, 07:02:37 PM »
Isn't it riskier to hope that what you want just happens to be in your image? Don't want to sound belligerent but, um, aren't you supposed to use the viewfinder to make sure your shot is 'spot on'?

Not to pick on you specifically, but it seems like there is a lot of "if you fix it in post, you suck as a photographer" type of comments or at least insinuations, and I guess I disagree with that.  I view photography as a visual art, not a "how well can you time the button pushing" art.

If you can capture that visual art straight out of the camera, great.  But if I use a bunch of post processing and get as good or better results, does that somehow make my product inferior?  We are using different tools and skills neither of which is inherently superior to the other to achieve the same end result.

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon EOS Rebel T4i [CR2]
« on: December 06, 2011, 10:07:36 AM »
As for moonlighting, "This new Rebel camera is a great choice - just came out and has LOTS of megapixels. You should also get this great second lens with a BIG zoom.  You'll need these Promaster protection filters, has 'pro' in the name 'cuz they're what the pros use. Oh, and you really need to get the great extended warranty we offer - it covers everything, no fine print, honest!"

I knew it!!   ;D  Thanks for the smile!

Software & Accessories / Re: Let's talk about RAW software
« on: December 05, 2011, 05:31:11 PM »
I believe that someone has to use many products in order to have an opinion and subsequently vote unbiased.
However, even people who have only used one or two products will have something interesting to say so I will read this thread with great interest.
I for example have used Camera Raw but I do not consider myself an expert. I correct contrast, white balance, sometimes I level the horizon, I rarely crop and sharpen a little. What I like most is being able to produce a small file with changes and leave the original image file intact. That being said, I wouldn't think of voting as I cannot compare it to other products...

Being interested to see opinions about this and other products too...

At only the third posting in this thread, and I'm already going to (sorta) hijack it--but I'm at least faithful to the title.  Sorry!   :-[

I have only used Adobe Camera RAW and so can't compare it to others, but I do have a question.  I have noticed that sometimes when I open a RAW image in Lightroom that it briefly (maybe a half second) appears one way and then...ummm...hard to describe, but changes and often seems to darken.  Is this ACR applying some sort of logic?  Is there a way to see it without those "changes"?  Often the .5 second glimpse looks better to me than the "final" image (with what little I can see in a half second.)  But whatever the case, I feel like I am not truly seeing the RAW image.  Thoughts/recommendations?

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon EOS Rebel T4i [CR2]
« on: December 05, 2011, 04:52:50 PM »
Entry-level customers and parents won't typically know anything about ISO performance, dynamic range or diffraction limits. They just know megapixels and want more of them.

Exactly.  Even on this site we all know about ISO, DR, noise, diffraction, etc. and still get into debates about them before Neuro sets us straight.   :P

I think that even if there was a Neuro in every BestBuy store to "educate" customers that a significant portion of them would still buy the camera with more MP. After all, he'd just be another salesman.

Wait a minute...how do we know he's not already moonlighting at the local Best Buy... :o

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