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Messages - Halfrack

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Software & Accessories / Re: Optimizing your monitor for print production...
« on: September 01, 2014, 09:46:03 PM »
1 - rent

2 - download your local Costco ICC profiles for their printers -

3 - read - it'll tell you how to apply them in photoshop

4 - print more :)

Reviews / Re: Pentax 645z Review
« on: August 26, 2014, 04:48:23 PM »
No LS lenses is what killed this system for me.
Take a Pentax 67 LS lens (like the SMC Pentax-6x7 165mm F4) and shoot with it via adapter & sync cable.  Remember, that shutter speed can be eh, but a faster strobe will make up for it. 

That poor focal plane shutter has more distance to cover, plus being a much wider shutter compared to 35mm.

I'm going to get one on rent and do a side by side with my H4D-50 - the only other 50mp chip out there - and do some side by sides.  Roger is the worst enabler.

Software & Accessories / Re: Insurance is an accessory right? :P
« on: August 25, 2014, 07:21:35 PM »
For those of you using your homeowners to cover your camera gear, I would recommend some caution.  I have heard of several photographers whose insurance company have challenged their claims as commercial use.  The companies point to having a website as advertisement of your business, etc.  I ended up purchasing commercial insurance so I'm covered no matter what.

I feel the need to emphasize this more and more - if you insure your gear as part of your home owners policy, any claim is treated like a major claim against the home and can substantially increase your rates.  Having a policy specific to high value gear makes sure that if something happens, you're going to be covered.

Night = expensive  ...

There is no way around it, it's expensive glass or crazy high ISO, as stadiums really aren't illuminated for photography.  If you're getting paid, then you know you need to invest in the gear.  If you're not getting paid, consider what you are getting as 'best possible under the circumstances'.  The 1.4x mk3 may give you the tidbit more reach you need, but you may get that from a crop body as well - it sounds like you're doing this with just one camera, which really doesn't allow the full range of options.  An option is to leave your 6D with a 70-200, and pick up a used 1D mk4 and pair it with a 70-200 (with the option of adding a 1.4x tele on top of that).

Even a used v1 of the 400/2.8 may be the best tool for you if you're always shooing across a soccer field - it all depends on what you're shooting and whom you are shooting for.

Photography Technique / Re: Is RAW worth it?
« on: August 25, 2014, 12:21:00 AM »

Storage is cheap, computers are powerful, and you can't always go back and reshoot.  If after a shoot, you cull your shots down to what you like.  Decide if you want to batch them all to jpg and call it done.  You can convert to jpg at any time, but can never go back to RAW.

Third Party Manufacturers / Re: Mindshift - Does it fit?
« on: August 21, 2014, 04:17:20 PM »
Thanks.  I appreciate that is really useful information.  So you'd think the 5d3 (with a wrist strap and plate - not an L just a bottom plate) and the 70-200 should fit? Do you carry the 70-300 upright or on it's side? The 70-200 is just a bit longer.  Do you think there'd be room for the 17-40 besides?
The 70-300 is less than 6" tall and the interior is 7" deep.  The 70-200F4 L IS is almost 7", and while it may fit, it'll be tight.

There are specific design issues that I think should prevent the BounceLite from being in most bags. 

Let's start by saying the inventor hasn't learned from Gary Fong, that space in a bag is precious, and if you notice, all of the Fong Domes are collapsible now - this thing is rigid plastic and a huge waste of space. 

Next, the price point - £80 is still over $120 USD, which is a high price for a Kickstarter where there are existing options in the market place, at a much cheaper point.  If you're looking for softer light, you have to move off camera due to size of the modifier, and you can get a Westcott Apollo kit for the same price.

Oh, Iglu71, the UK isn't a top marketplace for cameras, so the majority of backers are paying an extra £12 of shipping, no matter what price level they commit to.  Insults seem to be your method of standing up for someone you're related to, but I hate to tell you Neuro is one of the highest respected folks here at CR.

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon 1dx vs Nikon d810
« on: August 12, 2014, 09:43:29 PM »
Focus is off, based on my eye and comparing the two iris details - the 1Dx is spot on and sharp, while the D810 gets muddy.  Unless you strap your subject to a backboard and shoot from a tripod, reproducing the shots can be 'fun'.

Post Processing / Re: My Basic & Practical Back-Up Strategy
« on: August 09, 2014, 08:52:18 PM »
Damn you Mack, I feel old now...

Anyone else remember using a hole punch to make single-sided floppy disks into double-sided floppy disks (back when they were actually big and floppy)?

That only worked on 5 1/4" floppy disks - the 8" floppy disks were truely one sided.  Cassette tapes for program loading?  Commodore 64/128 or Leading Edge Model D with an 8086 chip running DOS 2.11.  Ah click of death - what a painful way to die...  I actually used to carry around the parallel ZIP drive back when I was working tech support, Windows 98 fit on a single disk.  Remember SyQuest also had their 'EZ Drive'?

To add more knowledge, a "clone" type backup is more inline with the included backup tools in Windows7/8 and Mac (Time Machine).  File based backup is like what Carbonite/Backblaze/iDrive offer - where you select your directories and they back them up.

File backup is better for photos and documents, while Image backup is better for programs and personal settings.  Thankfully you can stack your backup options - especially when you have multiple drives.  Use a clone or image based backup for your c:\ drive, while your photos out on e:\ are backed up using a file based technology.

Post Processing / Re: My Basic & Practical Back-Up Strategy
« on: August 08, 2014, 12:00:39 AM »
Zip, Jaz, Superdisk (120mb floppy disk from 3M), Doublespace v Drivespace lawsuit (Microsoft DOS 6.2/.21/.22)

Damn you Mack, I feel old now...

So there are a few things I'll toss in on:

- Fire safe - data rated fire safes are around that have a USB bass thru, but most importantly are going to keep the contents at 120 degrees rather than normal fire safes that go up to 400 degrees (when paper burns).

- I'm up to almost 4tb of data, and it keeps getting more fun.  I don't 'clone' due to a bad file on the source drive becomes a bad file on the 'clone'.  I'm using a sync product (chronosync personally, but there are others) for the reason I can tell it to 'archive' anything that is 'deleted' or 'changed' on the source drive.  Drive space is cheap, and I can grab anything back from the archive, no software needed.

- Single drives - if you have to pay someone like DriveSavers or Ontrack to recover data, it's much cheaper for a single drive compared to a RAID set

- To NAS or DAS  otherwise - 4 most important things for a NAS are
      1) setup alerting and test it
      2) back it up to something else (and send you a task completed email)
      3) have a spare drive to put in asap and
      4) have a recovery plan
Had lots of fun recovering an old ReadyNAS - back when they used Sparc CPUs, now they've done x86 and ARM as well - thankfully a client had an old one that happened to match up otherwise SOL.  Current favorite is Synology since I can recover the disks attached to any pc booting off a live-cd.

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon Doing Market Research on Medium Format?
« on: August 07, 2014, 12:50:56 PM »
The EF lenses would vignette like crazy, but maybe less than expected. The T/S lenses are basically MF with large image circle. A sensor size where the most common or best EF image circles just touched the top and bottom ... 12mm away .. might be usable. Or less ambitious, touched the left and right ... 18mm away.

Except that the T/S lenses would then cease to be a T/S lens because the image circle isn't big enough.

For Canon to start its own MF line requires a whole new camera system to be designed. This could go down as:
* body with integrated sensor - to just supply a body with sensor and use existing lenses (similar approach to 645Z)
* body with integrated sensor + lenses - similar approach to the 645Z but only works with Canon lenses
* MFDB - similar approach to Leaf and Phase One and leave body/lens manufacturing to others
* MFDB + body - produce a body that takes existing MF lenses from other manufacturers
* MFDB + body + lenses - introduce a whole new ecosystem (return on investment possible?)

To look at it from a different perspective, who would buy into Canon MFDB?
* sports photographers - they would need to replace all of their current lenses with newer, bigger lenses and if they don't work from monopods/tripods, they would then need to. For newspapers, etc, this ecosystem upgrade would be costly without any gain as current model FF cameras deliver what's required. i.e. no buyers here.

* event photographers - aren't going to want to carry around bigger and bulkier cameras and lenses to gigs, concerts, etc.

* wedding photographers - some parts of the wedding (non-walk around shoots) are suitable for MF shooting but not a whole lot. Those at the top end of this market are probably already using MF but it isn't a big market. With the barrier to entry being so low, it is hard to see wedding photographers being able to justify the spend.

* studio photographers - this group of the market is where most of the MF activity lives today. It's not an incredibly big market (if unit sales are anything to go by) and Canon would need to be very disruptive and aggressive to break into it.

* hobbyists - just don't have the money required (or not enough of them that do!) to make it worthwhile. When the type of photography is examined further, the group that benefits is landscape shooters but again equipment will become larger and less fun to take with you. If you're doing animals birds (in flight especially) then you'll need to buy and wield bigger cameras and lenses which is not all that attractive.

* cat photography - obviously the docile nature of cats and their fur makes them the perfect subject for MF digital photography however cat photographers do not seem to be particularly fussy about which camera they use so there could be difficulty in convincing this group to open their wallets.

There is the rich hobbyist market - someone said one of the more common hobbies for tech focused employees is photography - so there is a growing market, and to these folks the Phase/Hass system is really a reach.  Wedding shooters can do it all with their existing gear, but there is an issue in pricing - MF is an easy way to 'increase' your rates, and there are weddings that seem to have endless money available. 

Canon would have to bring a higher performing AF system - the Phase One DF+ has 3 AF points (center and either side about 1mm away from center), while Hasselblad has a single AF point but compensates for it with TrueFocus which adjusts the focus based of how you recompose the image.

Here's your MF cat image...

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon Doing Market Research on Medium Format?
« on: August 06, 2014, 03:39:20 PM »
...., clutching the updated carbon fiber handle of a state of the art  flash powder trough. 

Can I be there when they try to explain flash powder to the TSA agents?  :D

MF is fun today, even just shooting Fuji pack film (Polaroid) on a Mamiya RZ is cheap.

Lenses / Re: Airshow Photography - Big Whites vs Small Whites...
« on: August 04, 2014, 10:41:43 PM »
Money being no object, the 1Dx and the 200-400 have some sort of secret contrast detection autofocus - I'm trying to find it now.  Based on a guy shooting the Blue Angels this last weekend, he was saying that his keeper rate is over 95% now.  I'm going to keep digging as to what settings he was using.

Having a long lens like a 3/4/500 is nice, but it can't be your only camera, and it really needs a gimbal setup or monopod.  The airshows will get close to you and a 70-200 or 100-400 in hand to track what is closer is really handy.  AF accuracy is king as it doesn't matter if you framed the shot or not, lack of AF means no shutter or a blurry photo.

Lighting / Re: Studio lighting advice for a newbie
« on: August 04, 2014, 09:18:21 PM »
The next step (beyond Strobist reading) is finding a local studio or retail establishment that offers classes.  Don't spend money on studio lights until you get a better feel for them, and some 1on1 time quickly speeds up your learning curve.

The difference between studio lights and speedlites is size, modifier options and cost - if you're doing portraits only, you can get away with speedlites 99% of the time.  Plus, you can mix in speedlites as you need to light different things individually, so it's not like any money spent on speedlites is wasted.

PCB's Alien Bees are ok, but their Einsteins are amazing and worth the extra once you add in the CyberSync bits.

Reviews / Re: NIKON Releasing a Medium format DSLR 50MP
« on: August 04, 2014, 02:26:24 PM »
It's relatively easy to get a Hasselblad h3DII 39 with a 80mm kit for well under 10k and around 8k. A 210mm and a 35mm LS lens will add another 5k if bought used to the price tag. MF has become much more affordable and it could soon be available again to the masses if the price trend continues. Pentax could lead the way if they released a Line of LS lenses.

Careful - Hasselblad has cut off services to the H3D/H3DII bodies & backs.  H4D-40's can be had for under 10K CPO - - I'm playing with the 150mm and look to add the 35mm to the kit 80mm, toss in the 1.7x extender and it should be all I need - except for the 24mm HCD - that thing is amazingly wide!

Canon and Nikon don't have any existing glass that will do well in a MF world - well the 17/24mm TS-E lenses work really well, but that doesn't make for a system.  Between glass and the AF systems, Canon/Nikon would be better off buying Hasselblad or Phase and leaving the brands where they are.  Even resurrecting an old brand like Contax would be better than putting Canon/Nikon on the camera (Kyocera killed it in 2002).

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