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Messages - Grummbeerbauer

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Sigma has definitely stepped up their game recently.
I am currently on the fence to buy the 18-35 1.8, what holds me back is the hope for some further price drops when the early adopters have been fed.

The 120-300 2.8 OS is definitely something I would love to have, both for focal length (my longest serious lens is the 70-200 F4 IS, not counting the Tamron 28-300 VC, which has been setting on the shelf for a while now... ;)) and for speed, but unfortunately at 3+kg it is a tad too heavy and at 3k€ also too pricey for a hobbyist.

What really is missing is a serious contender for the Canon 100-400, i.e., a moderate zoom-range, only a f5.6 aperture at the long end, but weight < 1500 grams and price <1500€. And of course this lens should continue the trend of Sigma's latest offerings - awesome image quality already wide open. :)
Neither the old 120-400 OS, the 150-500 OS, nor the 50-500 OS are good enough in my book to seriously challenge the ancient Canon 100-400. If Canon finally announces a successor, it will probably be 20% better and cost twice as much, which finally moves it out of my hobbyist budget. That will definitely leave a huge gap for Sigma to fill.

EOS Bodies / Re: EOS 7D Mark II Test Camera [CR1]
« on: March 29, 2013, 08:39:13 AM »
I hope the new APS-C sensors are good. Loved everything about the 7D apart form the IQ was very disappointed. Even if you look on DXO compare it to a 40D there is barely any difference.
I am personally not even that happy with the 7D's AF (after all the praise it received, I had just expected more precision and better tracking), but I fully agree that the high ISO performance of the sensor was not too hot even 3+ years ago. ISO 1600 is barely acceptable, ISO 3200 for emergencies at best.
With the 5DIII being to expensive for an amateur, the 6D being underwhelming, I was really hoping for the 7DII although I had preferred to go FF, but at the added cost of replacing at least 3 lenses, I guess I can live with APS-C.
So if the 7DII turns out to be about that, I might finally sell my two Canon bodies, 6 Canon lenses, 3 third party lenses, and accessories and get a D600 with 24-70 (the Tamron looks great, BTW), 70-200 2.8, a third party macro and WA lens, and take the rest of the revenue and put it into some other hobby.

EOS Bodies / Re: EOS 7D Mark II Test Camera [CR1]
« on: March 29, 2013, 08:30:04 AM »
"Viewfinder LCD Higher Resolution Than 7D"

That and the 19-point AF give this away as being purely fictional...
Absolutely agree, that line caught my eye and it simply makes no sense for that type of "fixed-shape", non-pixel-based LCDs.

EOS Bodies / Re: EOS 7D Mark II Test Camera [CR1]
« on: March 29, 2013, 08:27:14 AM »
I agree with what many already posted, that would be disappointing for a 7DII -- no dual card slots, no better AF (I have a 7D, and I am not satisfied with its AF for fast moving action, but that could also be a lack of skill on my side  ;)).

At the same time, it is way overspeced for a 70D (10fps, weather sealing etc.)

So if this really to be the 7DII, the only reason that could make me buy it is that is has a significant improvement in sensor performance (RAW!, not JPEG... I do not need better in-camera NR, LR will always be better at that), and that it stays in a reasonable price range (i.e., a good deal below the 6D, 1500€ at most).

But neither do I think that Canon made some miraculous leap in sensor technology, that somehow didn't make it in their recent FF offerings, but now happens to be available for some APS-C camera, nor do I believe that Canon will suddenly return to reason in terms of their pricing policy.

One line somewhat caught my eye, though:

"Viewfinder LCD Higher Resolution Than 7D"
The 7D's viewfinder LCD consists of discretely etched, "shaped" elements. The grid lines, AF points, digits etc. are not created of pixels, but are more comparable to the display of, e.g., an LCD wrist watch. So a statement like "higher resolution" IMO makes little sense - so little, that it could easily discredit this entire CR1 rumor to be utter BS.
The only reason (aside from a 7DII getting a EVF instead of an OVF) that this could make some sense is that they now have a pixel matrix in some areas of the viewfinder to be more flexible with regards to the info they display.

Third Party Manufacturers / Re: Sigma Announces New 30mm f/1.4 for APS-C
« on: January 30, 2013, 02:46:15 AM »
I have the current Sigma 30 1.4. Bokeh is nice, however, it is a bit "dreamy" wide open, but gets quite sharp in the center at around f1.8. What bugs me the most though, and is the reason why I don't use it that much is the crappy AF... its more like a lottery.
When Sigma announced the FF 35 1.4, and everyone started raving about the great IQ and AF accuracy,
I decided for me that I will sell the 30mm on medium-term and get the 35 once the latter's price goes down a bit more. While this would probably cost me ~500€, it would hopefully give me a lens that I actually use and at the same time make my lens collection just a bit more FF capable, in case I ever pick up a 5DIII, 6D etc.

Now Sigma announces the revised APS-C-only 30mm... aside from fearing for the resale value of my old sample (which probably ain't too great anyway  ;), but which I hoped would ease the pain of buying the 35mm at least somewhat), I think I will still stick with my original plan: Unless the new 30mm turns out to be at least as good or even better than the 35 regarding both AF and IQ and is significantly cheaper, I see no reason to not go for the 35.
What do you think?

At first, I was skeptical about the possible quality of such a solution. But so was Roger, the Lensrentals guy.
Read his take on the Metabones adapter:


Looks pretty damned good to me. :-)

Lenses / Re: Canon 85mm f/1.8 vs Other L and non-L Canon Primes
« on: January 14, 2013, 03:44:09 AM »
I have the 85 1.8 and the 100L on a 7D. I found that on crop, 100mm is definitely too long for indoor portraits, while 85mm fits quite nicely (although you will still get problems in tight places). So for me on crop, it was never the question to get the 100 2.0 over the 85 1.8, despite the 100 being better (I heard the 100 2.0 has much less purple fringing than the 85 1.8 on high contrast edges, which is IMO the most critical issue with this lens, but I can live with it since the images are just astonishing in virtually every other aspect).
So on crop: 85 1.8 for portraits, 100L for macros, but the latter -- at least for me -- does NOT double as a portrait lens.
I think on FF, the game is a different one. If you are interested in macro, you might be able to do with only the 100L, although 2.8 max. aperture could be a bit limiting. If you don't need macro anyway, I would probably prefer the 100 2.0 over the 85 1.8 due to the latter's aforementioned PF issue.

About the 85L: A colleague of mine recently got one, and I had the opportunity to play around with it, too. Impressive piece of glass, but extremely sluggish AF (and -- being warned that its AF is slow, I didn't expect much, but I still got a negative surprise here). I guess my hit rate wide open would not be good enough, and if I have to stop down anyway, why should one deal with the extra expense and weight?
We both concluded that it is more of a "show off" lens, and back to the store it went.

I' also a happy owner of both the 100L and the 24-105L, and I, too, was thinking "What the ..." when Canon announced the new 24-70 f4 L IS. Way too expensive for little gain.
lensrentals.com has an interesting comparison of 24-70 2.8 I, 24-70 2.8 II, Tamron 24-70 2.8 VC, 24-70 f4 IS, and 24-105 f4 IS, and that averaged over many samples. Here the new 24-70 f4 IS beats the 24-105 by a small margin in sharpness (and by a large margin in distortion ;)), and the Tamron lies in between the Canon 2.8s.

See for yourself:


Still, not only based on that numbers, I don't think that I would ever "upgrade" to the 24-70 f4. I would rather spent that money on the Tamron, which seems to be excellent, given the price.

EOS Bodies / Re: taurians upgrading to 5d mark 3
« on: January 11, 2013, 02:40:43 PM »
An Aries here, currently with a 7D. I am still weighing my options, ranging from 7DII, 5DIII, to D600 and D800.
BTW: While I generally agree with GuyF about Astrology being some major BS, the amazing number of common traits I found among a small sample of female Taurons is sometimes amazing me.  ;D

Canon General / Re: Canon Experience Stores Coming Soon [CR3]
« on: January 11, 2013, 06:48:04 AM »
Well, at least we now know where they plan to put all that extra cash they are making (trying to make) out of us gearheads with their recent pricing "strategy".  :o

But that bitching aside: Of course it would be nice to try out some of the more exclusive lenses. The best thing I have seen in stores within 100km of my home town is around the level of a 5Dmk3 and 70-200 2.8 IS II. But if they are now trying to become Appleish (i.e., sell stuff not merely for it being good, but for it being hip, and that at a premium), I am not interested.

I am really interested in this lens, too, although it seems that aside from the exterior design and the focus limiter, nothing has changed from the previous 120-300 2.8 OS.
But what has changed significantly, though, is the price... in Germany the old one is 2999€, the "new" one 3999€. If this premium translates more or less directly into street prices (the old one has just dropped below the 2000€ barrier recently), I will probably look elsewhere.
For anyone interested in review, Photozone has one on 5DMk2:

Well worth the read, my summary: Great center sharpness, on par with 70-200 IS 2.8 II, borders not so great. Good bokeh, and -- being an apochromat -- virtually no green/purple fringing.
I handled the old 120-300 2.8 OS once in a store, and at 3kg it is really a behemoth.

PowerShot / Re: Canon Announces The PowerShot N
« on: January 08, 2013, 02:39:08 AM »
While I am not really too much interested in this "instant sharing thing" and am therefore also not in the market for a "connected camera" (but I am also not the one wasting my time on generic social networks, but more on special interest sites like this  ;)), I think Canon's foray into this market segment make a whole lot more sense than, e.g., Samsung's Galaxy or Nikon's Android camera.
Instead of putting  the whole infrastructure (mobile OS, network, radio, etc.) into the camera and that way duplicating what any user in this market segment already has in his smartphone, connecting to and using the existing infrastructure has many benefits:
  • No need to "maintain" two Android devices -- AFAIK at least the Samsung Galaxy camera (or was it the Nikon counterpart?) does not have telephony support, so you would still need to carry a smartphone with you anyway. And even if they did have telephony and all the other features -- due to the laws of physics, to get any decent image quality, a true camera smartphone (with the emphasis on "camera") needs to be bigger (larger sensor, leading to larger lenses) than I would like my phone to be
  • Independence of the devices: Emptying the camera battery will still allow me to use the smartphone for everything else and vice versa. This independence also allows me to make the same choice I have today when shopping for a  "dumb" camera, simply put, I can trade reduced camera size for a loss in image quality. If cameras from all segments offered such a kind of connectivity feature, I would not be forced to buy an inseparable bundle, where usually I have to compromise on either the camera or the smartphone side (or probably both). Instead, just like today, I could decide to bring my connected DSLR when possible, but do with my much smaller connected P&S when I can't justify the size and bulk of lugging a DSLR around, but not loose the connectivity features.
  • Decoupled development cycles: Smartphone development cycles are much shorter than those for cameras. Of course no one is really forcing you to upgrade a smartphone, but smartphone vendors are making a habit of offering OS updates for their devices for only a very limited time span. From the moment you don't get any security updates anymore, you are pretty much at risk (or have to start fiddling around with custom ROMs etc.)
    For cameras, however, technical progress, in particular in sensor technology and optics is much slower, making it much harder to justify throwing it away every two years.
    Of course this doesn't mean that camera vendors won't find ways to make you connected camera obsolete...  ;)

So, while I am not too happy with Canon's recent launches in the DSLR segment (in particular the insane pricing, but also the available features), I think they got something right with the Powershot N -- at least conceptually. We'll see how it fares in practice.



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