September 19, 2014, 08:21:13 PM

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Messages - pj1974

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1
Lenses / Re: Choose your Weapon: Ultra Wide Zooms for Canon
« on: September 16, 2014, 11:25:45 PM »
I love my Sigma 8-16mm and would vote for it.... but the vote / poll is only for FF.

I have used the Canon 10-22mm, Sigma 10-20mm on APS-C, but the Sigma 8-16mm is still my favourite.

On a friend's FF I have used 17-40mm, but would probably prefer the new 16-40mm f/4 because of the IS.

I've heard good reports of the EF-S 10-18mm IS and the EF-M 11-22mm IS too.

Paul

2
Lenses / Re: The New EF 24-105mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM
« on: September 11, 2014, 08:30:46 AM »
This could be a very interesting lens... a lightweight 'kit' lens, especially suited to the 6D.

Lightweight and 'decent' build.

STM AF (not as good as USM, but notably better than non STM/ non USM AF).

Very useful 4 stops IS.....

Canon have yet to make a bad STM lens... and I trust / hope this lens follows suit.

Paul

3
EOS Bodies / Re: Are you planning to purchase a 7D2
« on: September 02, 2014, 01:35:26 AM »
An interesting result....

Despite the negativity about various rumoured features, it comes close to an even split between those planning to purchase and those who wont. This might indicate a well selling model.... but of course everything depends on what the real camera is, and unfortunately we will probably have to wait for an official announcement for that.

I find it a bit disturbing that only 7% might buy one after they test it, 31.5% will only buy one if reviewed positively.  While reviews are useful for gathering information, I think making a purchasing decision primarily on a review for something like a camera (or lens) is a bad idea.   Reviewers rarely capture and communicate all of the positives and negatives of a device effectively, and only you can see if feels right for you.
Agreed. Ergonomics is a big thing... One of the reasons why I went Canon instead of Nikon was because I hated the Nikon user interface....

+1  Ergonomics are indeed very important. My initial Canon DSLR didn’t have the best grip –other ergonomics were ‘ok’, but over time Canon have got better, and particularly when I upgraded to the 7D, that camera was (and is) just the right size / DSLR form for me.  (I categorise “pocketable” cameras differently in terms of requirements, including IQ, ergonomics, etc).

I tried a few Nikon cameras – and ergonomically they never felt as ‘right’ for me as their Canon counterparts. In addition, I prefer Canon’s colours, AND definitely Canon’s lens selection.

I believe the 7DmkII will be a well-selling camera. (if there ever will be ‘such a beast’ – and indications are – that yes, there will be one, and hopefully we’ll know later this month!)

My take on it (based on the current market, recent DSLR trends – and the history of the 7D) – is that the 7DmkII will likely not sell in huge quantities in the ‘short term’ (ie not like quantities that the entry level DSLRs sell in). However, with a rich feature set, adequate IQ, great functionality and good durability, an ergonomically friendly top of the line Canon APS-C camera will sell well for many years.

The 7D’s grip, and all other ergonomics are so good for my hand / use.  I love using it.  Having said that, I do hope that the 7DmkII will also feature a great implementation of touch screen technology (and hopefully a sturdy swivel screen – with DPAF, hopefully trickling ‘up’ from the 70D).

Let’s see.  Days are counting down!!

4
EOS Bodies / Re: Are These The EOS 7D Mark II Specifications?
« on: August 28, 2014, 02:37:31 AM »

Happy Birthday!
I hit 55 next weekend... I asked for a 600F4 for my birthday.... I will probably get a pair of socks :)

Hopefully they are "Canon" socks!   :o
With size 13 1/2 feet I am almost guaranteed "Big Whites"...

 ;D  ;D  ;D
Good one.

Well, with my Australian foot size of 8.5 I will have to settle for my 70-300mm L socks (not quite a 'big white')

And thanks for the birthday wishes! I hope for several happy years of photography ahead....  :)

5
EOS Bodies / Re: Are you planning to purchase a 7D2
« on: August 27, 2014, 07:47:58 PM »
With all the hype on the forum about the 7D2, the question is asked.... "Are you going to get one"?

Who is serious about the camera and who is just kicking tires or wondering about Canon's possible plans for the future?

I just posted in the ‘loooong’ thread (at the time on page 49) “Are These The EOS 7D Mark II Specifications?” indicating that yes, it’s likely I will purchase the 7DmkII at some stage (if it’s reviewed favourably).

In essence, (summary here) is that I would be interested in seeing what changes / improvements the 7DmkII brings to Canon’s flagship APS-C camera… I have been very happy with my 7D since purchasing it soon after it was released.

I enjoy photography immensely – taking photos across a variety of genres, and share with friends. I also teach photography to many friends informally.

I see photography as blend of artistic expression, applied technical competence, using one’s understanding of light & physics as well as creativity.
(Indeed, to me photography is much much more than just talking about gear as gadgets!)

So… c’mon Canon – show us what you have got!

Cheers & best wishes

Paul

6
EOS Bodies / Re: Are These The EOS 7D Mark II Specifications?
« on: August 27, 2014, 07:38:23 PM »

Definitely an indication of pent-up demand..... I wonder how many will purchase one?

I thought the same thing, but when scrolling through all the pages, there are really only a handful of characters making the majority of all of this noise.  But I do think that the existence of hundreds of 7DII posts that have popped up here over the last year might be a good indication of pent up demand.

To answer your question:  I'll likely be an early adopter.
Same for me...
I was sorely tempted when to 70D came out... but sat on it in the hopes of an even better AF system on a successor to the 7D.... As long as they don't make it worse than the 70D (and that just isn't going to happen) I intend to get one too.... perhaps I should start up a poll :)

The 7DmkII is definitely a camera that I’m interested in purchasing.

My first DSLR was the Canon 350D. I’m very happy with my purchase of the 7D a short time after it was released. The 7D is, understandably, superior in every way. I enjoy a mix of photography, but mainly landscape, wildlife, macro & some ‘events’ (usually in reasonable light – eg outdoor & children camps that I am also the director of).

The 7D’s size, features, ergonomics, IQ, responsiveness, etc – really make it a great camera. I’m assuming that the 7DmkII would be an ‘action-oriented’ APS-C with a rich good feature set. I would be very surprised if it was anything but this.

I have a range of lenses that really suit my 7D, from my awesome UWA Sigma 8-16mm to my handy all purpose Canon 15-85mm. I also own the delicious Canon 100mm macro (I love live-view for many macro shots) to the compact yet high IQ tele-zoom Canon 70-300mm L.

How soon I might purchase a 7DmkII depends on a number of factors:
-   If my 7D ‘kicks the bucket’ – or develops some other serious fault
-   IQ improvement over the 7D, especially at low ISO in poor light
-   AF (I have learned to get great shots by understanding the 7D’s AF ability well)
-   Screen (touch screen, sturdy swivel screen my hope)
-   Price (this is obviously relatively important, but to me I have an approximate budget of AUD$2,500 set aside)
-   Who knows, Canon might release a 7DmkIII 2 years down the track, and I might end up getting that instead! :D

I don’t plan to move to FF for a number of reasons. I hope some of you will get a laugh out of this as one reason: to prove that one doesn’t need to use a  FF DSLR to produce great photos!
In fact, I have many photos from an early P&S Fuji digital camera that I (and others) still consider ‘lovely photos’

So yes… I’m very much looking forward to the Photokina announcements, particularly if Canon has the 7DmkII coming out then (as far as I have read, the 7DmkII is not even a 100% certainty, though there appear to be a number of indicators that it IS coming out next month, right?) Sure multiple threads and surely 49 pages of posts in 1 thread can’t be wrong! Lol  (And this is my contribution to this thread).

I might place a quick post on your other thread, Don!  Cheers (again, like I have written previously – I particularly appreciate your positive and balanced input on this thread).

Have a good end to the week everyone… 1 more day and it’s the weekend here in Australia!
This weekend I turn 40….  :)

Regards

Paul

7
Lenses / Re: Safari 300 2.8 Mkii or 200-400 1.4x
« on: July 17, 2014, 08:20:13 AM »
I've done quite a lot of travel in my life - from Australia (where I was born) to Europe (where I lived for about 11 years) to Asia (visited a number of times).  So while I haven't been to Africa (or your particular safari) I have used various camera / lens configurations during my overseas trips / holidays.

My advice would be to go with the zoom. Much more flexible for composing shots of various animals (small to large size, near or far).  And generally in Africa, for a 'safari setting' f/4 to f/5.6 works fine.

So for such a holiday I'd go for the 200-400mm 1.4x f/4 L zoom over the 300mm f/2.8 L prime any day.  And as you said, you don't want to be changing separate 1.4x and/or 2x TCs all the time.

Be careful with your gear (Any photographic gear will potentially attract attention - including possibly from some people who might think to 'relieve you of it'.  So... will it be insured? Will you be with someone else? What are you plans for storage? etc)   I generally find having 1 body and a flexible (eg zoom, and IS) lens is better than 2 bodies on 'holiday' situations. Especially when you have a big lens... just don't weigh yourself down too much.

Hope you enjoy yourself.  Best wishes. And I look forward to see some photos of your safari after you've returned!

Paul

8
Site Information / Re: Post Precessing Section
« on: July 14, 2014, 01:37:11 AM »
This would be good... post processing can be very important (for some photos more than others).

I have been a member of another photography forum on the interweb for many years, and they had a ‘post processing’ section that I (& many others) found very helpful.

So I would love CR (one of my fav photography websites currently) to have a Post Processing part of the forum.  Cheers (& hopefully thanks in advance!)

PJ   8)

9
Lenses / Re: Canon EF 100-400 f/4.5-5.6L IS II [CR1]
« on: July 13, 2014, 06:56:54 AM »
If the focus ring was at the other end of the push/pull barrel so it didn't get turned accidentally, and if the IS was worth anything, it would be a far more pleasant lens to use.

Have you used the 70-300L?  The design places the focus ring next to the body, the zoom ring further out. That's reversed from other L lenses, and means your hand (well, mine at any rate) reflexively grabs the focus ring when intending to zoom.  A real PITA, and if the new 100-400 has a similar design, it would be unfortunate.

I own the older Tamron super zoom (200-500mm). Its focus ring is placed where it is next to the camera's body...and I kind of like it that way! When used on a monopod or tripod, it seems a lot better that way...but certainly different from my Canon lenses.

I own a number of Canon L lenses - which started out with the Canon 28-135mm 'back in the day' which has the focus ring close to the body, and the zoom ring further away. (I've since sold the Canon 28-135mm)

Currently the 15-85mm and 70-300mm L are among my 2 favourite lenses (mainly used on my 7D) - and I actually prefer the configuration of focus ring close to body and zoom ring further away. The Canon 70-300mm L won for me over a number of other options  (a few years ago) - because of it's IQ and size/weight.  I did consider the 100-400mm... but that extra 100mm of zoom wasn't 'worth it' for me (I understand it might be for others).

I have used the 100-400mm a number of times, i.e. using friend's lenses, borrowing, etc. I became more accustomed to the 'push pull' after some time than I thought I would, but still generally by 'instinct' prefer a zoom ring, and a zoom ring nearer the end of my lenses. Having said that, I know it would be a different story if I had only got used to lenses with the zoom closer to the body (eg if I had owned the Canon 24-105mm L instead of the Canon 28-135mm).  But hey, the Canon 24-105mm L wasn't around at the time I got into photography!

I have owned 3 x Sigma UWA lenses (and initially found it mildly inconvenient on each that 1) the zoom rotates the other way AND 2) the focus is at the end and zoom ring is nearer the body. Thankfully I pretty much have a 'mental switch' in my mind now, so when I put my Sigma 8-16mm on my camera, I somewhat reflectively know it's on and my hand/mind know what to do (eg in the dark).

Horses for courses... but most importantly, enjoy your gear and take great photos.  I trust that Canon will have done their research (& design) well; and if they do come out with a 100-400mm L II (or similar) that they will come out with an awesome lens.   However I doubt I'll be buying one... as the 70-300mm L meets my needs very well.

Best wishes all...

Paul

10
Part of the problem is:
 I have a Tamrac bag that I got more than 30 years ago, I've hauled it all over the country and halfway around the world, and it is still in very good shape.  Its not showing obvious wear and I'm not seeing a need to replace it, maybe in another 30 years...

Indeed, well explained.  The sign of good gear when it lasts that long!

Also - having good designs, so that a photog knows what one wants, and buys it - then no need to buy 'multiple / upgrade' bags either.

11
EOS Bodies / Re: Canon EOS 7D Mark II Speculation [CR1]
« on: June 19, 2014, 12:20:12 AM »
This is my prediction (which I have written before - and close to what Don has suggested in this thread)

24MP sensor
improved ISO performance at both low & hi ISOs (eg lower noise, less banding)
10 fps, with 2 options for lower fps
AF system similar to 5DmkIII (good frame coverage, extra sensitive, mostly cross type AF sensors)
DPAF (slight improvement on 70D)
Dual Digic6 processors
1xCF slot + 1xSD card slot
4k video, at least 60fps 1080 video, with headphone jack and more customisation
Touchscreen (I hope, but doubt - it will be articulated)
wireless flash controller (probably radio)
WIFI and GPS
Similar black body / same weather sealing - including integrated pop-up flash
LP-E6 battery (optional portrait grip to house 2x batteries)
$2200 RRP

12
Lenses / Re: Any word on the 50mm with Image Stabilzation?
« on: June 17, 2014, 10:35:22 PM »
For the 87th time, Canon is working on an EF 50mm F/(no one knows) IS USM.  Going to happen.  Done deal.  (An 85 as well, surely.)

It will be exactly like the other non-L IS refreshes that the 24/28/35mm focal lengths got in the last two years:

  • Far far sharper.  As good or better than Canon's large aperture L in the same FL.
  • Modern, fast USM
  • Size on par with the current 50 F/1.4 -- i.e. much much smaller and lighter than the L or the Sigma Art.
  • 3-4 stops of IS
  • Much better build quality: solid feel, higher quality plastics, etc.
  • Internal focusing

...and it will be worth every penny.  If you want a solid 50mm for all purposes including handholdability in low-light, video, etc., this will undoubtedly be it.  The Sigma Art is a stellar lens at a great value, but a one stop advantage of speed is obliterated by 3-4 stops of IS depending on what you shoot.  (For me, that's huge.)  And we all know what a fickle diva the 50 F/1.2L is -- stellar draw/bokeh/feel but soft as a noodle in the corners and somewhat finnicky AF at wider apertures.

The only unknowns remaining are the max aperture and the cost. 

All prior non-Ls that got this refresh treatment retained their prior max aperture (24 and 28 --> F/2.8, 35 --> F/2).  However, in this segment, an F/1.4 IS might be big and heavy and perhaps Canon doesn't want to do that, so some folks have posited that it will be a segment-shaker-upper and be an F/1.8 IS.  We shall see.

The cost will depend on a lot of things:

  • Is it replacing the Canon EF 50 F/1.4 USM or will it be sold alongside it?
  • Will the max aperture be F/1.4?  F/1.8?  F/2?
  • How sharp will it be?  If it outpunches the 50 F/1.2L considerably (which not a high bar at all), will Canon enjoy people paying (say) $600 instead of $1500 for sharper lens?  (Replace $600 with $949 and you can see why Sigma loves life right now.)

So my guess is that it will be 90% as sharp as the Sigma Art (at comparable apertures) and run high at first offering -- say $799 -- to gobble up every photog who has stuck with the Canon 50 F/1.4 because the L is lacking something that they need.  Over time, the price might settle down around $600 like the other non-L IS refreshes.

- A

+0.8   [that is, quite close to my thoughts about this matter.]

Edit - the main thing that I believe I'll stick with a Canon 50mm prime with (rather than a Sigma, or other 3rd party lens) is that there have been slight AF inconsistencies with 3rd party lenses, which is crucial for my style of 50mm shallow depth of field photography.....

Thanks for saving me some typing time, ahsanford   :)

13
Lenses / Re: This thing's gotta go!
« on: June 11, 2014, 10:09:28 PM »
I had a Canon EF 28-135mm USM IS, that I bought with my first DSLR. I had a good copy, and mine was better than the 18-55mm kit lens (ie the 28-135mm was sharper wide open, more contrast, had USM focus, and IS).

It was my favourite lens for large flowers, and I kept it until about a year after I bought my 7D and Canon EF-S 15-85mm (which was a few years ago now).  Since using the superior 15-85mm, I didn’t find much use for the 28-135mm any more.  I decided to sell it… got a decent price for it, and am happy for the years of use I had out of it.

Along similar lines, I sold my Canon 100-300mm USM, when I upgraded to the Canon 70-300mm L USM IS.  This lens is a great telephone, especially on APS-C bodies.

I also sold my Sigma 10-20mm EX after I bought the superior Sigma 8-16mm (love this lens, with its extreme field of view!) 

The only other lens that I’ve sold is the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II.  I never really loved it – AF is between terrible and unacceptable (on all Canon DSLRs I’ve had), bokeh is harsh, and its quality wide open not good enough for my needs.

There you go!

Paul

14
EOS Bodies / Re: A Few EOS 7D Mark II Specs [CR1]
« on: June 11, 2014, 08:19:13 PM »
I am looking forward to see what any 7D mkII has to offer (as I have a 7D and was a relatively early adopter of this great camera).

My main hopes / criteria include:
-   It definitely has to remain APS-C  / 1.6x crop sensor (I have lenses, both EF-S and EF that I love on APS-C bodies).* 
-   Better IQ (both at low and high ISO, in terms of lower noise, no banding – and good per pixel sharpness)
-   Improved AF (stronger, more consistent auto-focussing – especially in poor light, but I find the 7D does quite a good job if one knows how!)
-   Phase Detect DPAF (Dual Pixel Auto Focus) on sensor, like the 70D (or even better)
-   Body size / weight / shape – I love it as it is, and yes, I’ve use many other bodies – smaller, larger, Canon & other brands. 7D is just right for me! I’d prefer not to have an integrated grip.
-   Keep the pop up flash, it’s definitely convenient to have it there, and not need to always take an external flash
-   FPS is fine, but I’d like a 5 frame EV-exposure bracket possibility (not just the 3).
-   Intervalometer (not a huge deal breaker, I have the very good Hahnel remote, which can do those features, and has some other useful functionality)
-   WiFi & GPS – handy, but want to have the option to switch them on & off easily. Not essential or that important for me.

* APS-H is dead, and didn’t give the best of both worlds, it gave the worst of both worlds – though I can understand for some people it ‘worked’ as a handy compromise.

I don’t mind the mode dial – I really like that it has hard stops (I place ‘sports / quick action’ photography on C3).  But I only use these 3 modes Av (85% of the time), M (10%) and Tv (5%).  I certainly don’t want the P mode, or ‘Creative Auto’, etc.  I would be happy with 5 x Custom modes, either accessible via a mode dial, button/s or a well-implemented touchscreen system.

Having seen what Canon has brought out with the 70D (for a xxD body - a fine camera: good image quality, rich feature list & great value) – I have positive (and hopefully not unrealistic) expectations of a good 7DmkII… it’s certainly been a long time in the coming!

Paul

15
Lenses / Re: Photozone review of EF-S 10-18mm is online
« on: June 08, 2014, 08:10:23 AM »
Thanks Traveller for starting this thread.  Well done to Klaus @ Photozone for a speedy review.. I love his analysis and descriptions... good to read & follow.

I saw the review a day and a half ago, and it confirmed what I thought - another very 'attractive' Canon STM IS lens.  When I write 'attractive' - I mean, fantastic value for money, and very decent good image quality (IQ) and few other weaknesses.

Canon have been doing well with all their STM lenses in terms of IQ, general functionality, etc.  So it's great to see this being a 'budget' yet good IQ, that complements the 18-55mm STM IS and the 55-250 STM IS.

I can imagine many people going for this lens who want a Canon EF-S UWA on the Canon DSLRs like xxxxD, xxxD, xxD and maybe even the 7D's. It's very competitive against other UWAs out there... and beats a handy few.

I used to have a good copy of the Sigma 10-20mm f/4-5.6, but upgraded to the Sigma 8-16mm, which has even better IQ than either of the Sigma 10-20mm's.  Plus it's an extra 2mm wider, which at that width is really noticeable!  Here is photozone's review of the Sigma 8-16mm - which interestingly is very similar in sharpness and general other IQ characteristics (eg vignetting and CA's) to the Canon 10-18mm.
http://www.photozone.de/canon-eos/515-sigma816f4556apsc?start=1

I hope many Canon APS-C camera owners will be happy owners and enjoy the fun of UWAs with the EF-S 10-18mm STM IS!  Looking forward to seeing beautiful images from it.  :)

Regards

Paul

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