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Topics - brianleighty

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Just found out Canon will have 20% off Refurbished EOS Digital Cameras, Lenses, PowerShot Digital Cameras, and Camcorders starting September 23rd and running until September 30th. No coupon code was given so I would assume they're doing it like they did last time and simply taking 20% off the price. Shipping is free with coupon code SHIP712 on orders over $100.

I did not see an limitations on this so this is really big deal. The 5D Mark II is currently in stock and with the 20% off is right around $1400 before tax. There are quite a few lenses out of stock currently. There's a chance some of them will come in stock during the discount period. You can either use Canon's built in tool for being notified (some products don't have this) or a script I wrote that checks the Canon store every 5 minutes which I mentioned in this thread:

Software & Accessories / iMac As Display / Calibration
« on: September 15, 2012, 10:46:03 AM »
So I'm thinking of getting the next iMac when it comes out. I've seen some post on here of people that use it for a monitor. I guess a few questions.

#1 - I'm currently using an eMachine monitor that I got for like $90 running on a Hackintosh I built. Overall everything works pretty well for what it is but I do realize I need something better 1 - for speed and 2 - for more calibrated coloring. The iMac for around $1200 seems like the best route to go. It'll be 3-4 times faster than my current system and I would assume the display will be much better. The alternative would be to build either a regular windows computer or another hackintosh and buy a nice external monitor. I wouldn't want to spend quite as much if I went this route as it's more work on my part and it has its faults (system not monitor). All that to say, would the iMac be equal to or better than what I could get otherwise for say $900-$1000?

#2 - If I do go with an iMac, I've read that the display panels are high quality but the profile they're setup with is not accurate so I will need to calibrate the display. I have two options here. Either 1 - Buy a calibrator in the $150 to $200 range or 2 - rent the colormunki from lensrentals. I guess this comes down to, can I get something in the $150 to $200 price range that will get me pretty close color wise or do I need something higher end like the colormunki. If I did rent the colormunki, how often do I need to calibrate my monitor? Would once a year be enough or how often are we talking? I like that the colormunki can also calibrate printers as well since I have a Canon iP4920 that tends to not match what I see on the screen. Thanks for your input.

Technical Support / Removing Vignetting On 3rd Party Lenses
« on: September 10, 2012, 04:10:38 PM »
So I use Digital Photo Professional for editing my pictures. I normally don't have to mess with vignetting at all due to most of my lenses either being Canon or they have low enough vignetting that I don't notice it. I just did a wedding with the Sigma 85 1.4 though and when wide open it has a fairly noticeable amount of vignetting that I'd like to try and remove. Is there anyway to do this inside of DPP? If not, what's the best way to go about trying to fix this in something like Photoshop or something else in bulk? Thanks.

Lenses / 40 2.8 with extension tubes
« on: September 10, 2012, 10:14:00 AM »
I was just wondering if anybody has tried out the 40 2.8 with extension tubes. Given its very small design, I would think this would give a greater minimum working distance since even with the extension tubes it wouldn't stick out as far as some other lenses.

I'm shooting a wedding in a couple weeks and am not planning to rent a macro for it. I just shot a wedding on Saturday and only used the 100 IS L for a few shots of the ring so I can't really justify renting a macro just for that little. I have the 24 105 and am renting the tamron 24 70 as well in case anybody has any input on if those would work better with extension tubes (I would think not). I also have been wanting to try out the canon 35 1.4 and own the canon 35 2.0 if anybody has tried it on those as well. Thanks.

Software & Accessories / Yongnuo RF-603 Limitations
« on: September 01, 2012, 11:29:22 PM »
So I just got my Yongnuo RF-603 triggers. They're not bad for the price but I realized a couple things now that I own it that I didn't realize before hand. I think I still would of gotten it but it does show that it designed to be used a specific way and has some freedom limitations. Anyways, the first thing is it took me forever to get it working. I put batteries in both triggers but when I would push the button it wouldn't send a signal to the other trigger. I tried different channels and batteries thinking those were the issue. I finally put the trigger on top of the camera and suddenly everything worked. I googled around and discovered this is a limitation of this model is that the transmitter has to be on the hot shoe on a Canon camera to work. The main thing that stinks about this is it means I can't use an ettl flash on the hotshoe at the same time I'm using this trigger :( I tested to see if the ETTL passed through but it doesn't (not that I'd really to do that since there's no locking base on the triggers). The PC port is an output only so you can't send a signal to the trigger through a camera's PC Sync port. There's stuff online about putting in a resistor inside the unit to trick into being a transmitter always. I don't completely understand what they're doing but my question is couldn't this be done outside the unit as well? So have like a hot shoe that you put the trigger on that has that resistor built into the stand? Then you could just remove the stand when you didn't want it to be transmitter and then you could put a pc sync input on it as well so you could activate the trigger from the pc sync out port.

Another limitation I found and this is more specific to my setup. But I would like to have a setup where when I take a picture with my primary camera, the secondary camera takes a picture as well. I can make this work if I plug the remote shutter release into both cameras and their respective trigger but if I use the cameras built in button to take a picture then the other camera won't take a picture which means I have a very awkward setup to have to use the button built into the trigger since once again the 2.5mm output for remote release is output only not input. I brought this up in another thread and thought I'd bring it up here as well that I'm wondering what would prevent you from using the PC sync port to trigger the other camera to take a picture. I did some testing and the voltage the trigger is sending out is maybe a volt if that if my meter is working correctly. The camera itself is sending a higher voltage than that for the remote release trigger so I don't why that wouldn't work but then again I'm little eerie of trying it out with off chance it would take out a circuit board in the camera. The safest option would be to use a relay or something similar that upon getting the input voltage it completes the remote release circuit. By doing this, whenever I take a picture with the main camera it will send a signal to the second camera to take a picture as well which is what I want.

Any thoughts anybody?

Lenses / Canon 35 1.4 with extension tubes
« on: August 28, 2012, 06:20:01 PM »
Does anybody here use the Canon 35 1.4 with extension tubes? I see the lens has a floating system which is supposed to make it better for closer focusing. I realize a Canon 100 2.8 IS is a much better option for true macro work but for the occasional shot, I'm wondering if this might be a possibility for ring shots with a pleasing background.

Speedlites, Printers, Accessories / What size Softbox
« on: August 22, 2012, 09:00:34 PM »
So I currently have a 580exii and 430 exii and am currently using a gary fong diffuser on each. I'm looking to improve the softness of the light by starting to experiment with a softbox. The one I'm looking at is:

Some of the reviews mention it only being good for one person. I'd like to be able to use it with groups as well. Will this not work for that due to the angle of light transmission? Thanks.

Lighting / YN-622 Reviews?
« on: August 19, 2012, 02:30:39 PM »
Anybody know of any reviews of the Yongnuo YN-622? It's for sale on ebay but I can't find any reviews for it. It looks promising but I don't want to buy it without some input.

Software & Accessories / PixStics - Release Log
« on: July 23, 2012, 10:45:19 PM »
I'm releasing an updated version of Pixstics today which comes with a number of bug fixes and feature improvements. To help organize things better, I am starting this thread in which I will announce new versions as they become available. I'd like to keep the discussion in the original thread:
That way those that do not wish to provide feedback on it can still get updates of when new versions are released without having to receive a bunch of notices for other stuff. Hope you guys enjoy. Below is a list of changes in this version:
  • Bug fix - Fixed code issue that would cause error on missing data
  • Bug fix - File rotated with Windows Photo Viewer was causing script to get in an endless loop
  • Improvement - Files not containing exif field will be checked for meta data of same type.
  • Improvement - Duplicate files will now only be counted once. First checks for name and size matching if no match checks if serial number and original date time match
  • Improvement - Group by lens or camera added. Currently only works on Canon exif data

I was planning to add at least one more item but figured it was better to go ahead and release it and add that in later. As before, feel free to comment in the discussion thread:

Third Party Manufacturers / Old Nikon Lenses with Adaptor
« on: July 14, 2012, 11:13:41 AM »
So I often hear people talk about using old Nikon lenses on a Canon with an adapter. I never actually see what lenses they use it with though and what they are comparable to performance wise of a current Canon lens. Is this one of those urban myths or can you actually get a nicer picture for less money going this way? I realize the limitations and so of course that has to be factored in but if we're just talking strictly image quality is this a good option?

Lighting / Multiple Flashes During Wedding Ceremony
« on: July 14, 2012, 10:58:36 AM »
I currently shoot with a single 430 or 580 flash during wedding ceremony's. For the stuff closer up where I can bounce it up it's pretty decent but for longer distance shots where I have it running straight through a gary fong lightsphere to soften it up some but still straight at them it's not as nice an effect. I've been thinking of getting a third flash (we shoot with 2 cameras) and I'm wondering if it would be weird to have another slave flash off camera just bringing up the ambient light in the room or if that's too distracting. Anybody have thoughts on this or done something like that before?

Software & Accessories / Canon Direct Instock Alert Tool
« on: July 12, 2012, 10:51:46 PM »
So I'm starting to think about the next tool I'd like to release after PixStics which I just released:

One thing I've seen as a limitation of Canon's direct store is an in stock alert system. I'd like to remedy that with a tool that would check every minute and if a product you're interested comes in stock it can either email or text you. Especially during the times where the coupon is active I can see this being very useful.

Does anybody think this is a good idea? Obviously I would use it just like I use PixStics but I'd obviously like to make sure it'll be useful to others as well if I put a bunch of time into it. Thanks.

Software & Accessories / Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« on: July 09, 2012, 05:58:11 PM »
Alright, so I'm sure this has probably already been discussed but I wasn't able to find it with the search tool so if someone can find it and forward the thread to me then I'd be fine with that. If it this hasn't been discussed then I'd like to get some input. I got the 5d Mark ii fairly recently and would like to put in a better focusing screen. I changed the one in my 50D and really liked the improvement in MF. I guess my question is should I go with the Canon EG-S or are there better options? I've read people talk about split prism or the like but my main worry is with having to recompose after focusing and then being out of focus. My other question is I got the 24-105 with it as well. Anybody have experience with how dark this gets with the Canon EG-S. On my 50D f/4 lenses aren't too bad. It's more at 5.6 where things start to get too dark. Can anybody concur this is the same here? Thanks.

Software & Accessories / PixStics - Discussion
« on: July 09, 2012, 05:17:09 PM »
Hello everyone, so I've been working on a script for around the past 10 months and I'm finally ready to get some feedback from other people. I named it Pixstics because it does picture statistics by taking the exif data in JPGs and compares it against the other JPGs in the set. It's all javascript based so there's no software to install and it will work offline as well once it's been loaded up at least once. If some of you guys want to check it out and see what you think:
I'd love to hear your feedback on it. Thanks.

Technical Support / Tripod for moving subjects
« on: June 26, 2012, 01:46:16 PM »
So I have a ball head tripod. It's not super great but not bad either. It definitely works very well for still subjects where I can set it up, do the mirror lock up and timer start. But if I'm trying to shoot say a wedding where I have let's say a 70 200 f4 lens non stabilized on a crop body, then the tripod really doesn't work since the subject is a lot of times at least slightly moving so I'm having to follow with them as I take pictures. For this reason I end up using a monopod instead which while good for taking the weight off, doesn't stabilize the picture a ton. Does anybody have any recommendations for tripods you use for moving subjects? I've thought of just using a video tripod instead of a ball head but wasn't sure if that was the route to go or not. Thanks.

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