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Messages - pj1974

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166
EOS Bodies / Re: Canon Announcements on April 23, 2013? [CR2]
« on: April 09, 2013, 10:52:53 PM »
I think that is why Canon has been doing alot of len upgrades. I think they are making sure that users who will buy a Big MP body will be able to get results out of it via the new L glass.  Just MHO, but I think Canon is smart to upgrade glass first.

+1   I have been thinking along the same lines as this, above.

Canon has made some very good moves regarding digital photography in the past (eg first in FFs, first DSLR with video and live-view, etc).

So the idea of first getting a suitable amount of high quality lenses to get the most of any increased MP DSLRs (particularly FF) makes a lot of sense to me.

When I upgraded from an 8MP 350D to a 18MP 7D, the requirement for better glass to get the most out of the increased resolution / sensor was clear to me.  I now have high quality lenses covering 10mm to 300mm, including Canon L glass too.

Regards

Paul

167
Thanks faccray for sharing this Good News Story!   (Particularly as the world often seems full of bad news stories!)  Glad to hear of the honesty of both the Canon folk and yourself!

I also live in Australia and have had my 7D serviced twice (same issue: the pop-up flash gets 'stuck' down due to a known issue with a little 'sensor button' under the metal hotshoe mounting - after eg an external flash was put on it).  The issue now seems resolved.

Both times it was under warranty. First time took a bit over a month (I think it had to go interstate) - the 2nd time just over 2 weeks. They did a good job (so they should have of course, nothing was my fault).

Regards

Paul

168
My first suggestion is also for you to get a 7D (you can get very decent prices even for a new 7D now - or better prices for a used / refurb 7D).  I upgraded from a lesser model Canon DSLR, and the 7D's AF is vastly superior to any Canon XXXXD, XXXD or XXD- particularly when you know how to use the 7D's AF to it's limit. And the 7D's IQ is notably superior to your former 20D's.

While an infant (often a barely moving or sleeping baby) doesn't require great AF... by the time they are 1.5 to 2, they can move much more, so the 7D's AF will be handy. For indoors / dimly lit, the 17-55 f/2.8 can do a lot - though possibly the 35mm f/2 IS USM would be my choice of 'pure low light' (great IQ wide open, USM AF and the mature 4-stop IS). While a flash might not 'damage' a baby's eyes permanently, I wouldn't take a photo with a bright flash in their eyes, purely from a "caring for the baby's emotions" factor.

My 2nd suggestion is for you to go with something from a 550D to 700D. :)  And get a good prime (eg the 35mm f/2 IS USM).  Get a 7DmkII only if you really need it as an upgrade, when it's price is lower (eg 6 months or more after it's released).

All the best. And I mean that particularly for your family and caring for the precious gift of a child.

Paul

169
I have used various UWA lenses on eg Canon's 7D - and let me say that wide open at equivalent of 14mm and 16mm (in FF comparison) - the Sigma 8-16mm, Sigma 10-20mm's or Canon 10-22mm and Tokina 11-16mm, etc really shine. Often they're much sharper in the corners than FF can do with eg a 17-40mm or 16-35mm.

At equivalent or equal apertures?


At equivalent apertures *1, and definitely at equal apertures *2.

1) eg Sigma 10-20mm @ f/5.6 vs Canon 17-40mm @ f/8 or f/9. I've seen so many shots of FF with good L glass zooms - even stopped down they don't match the crispness of APS-C. Not ALWAYS, but often!  These pages give you an indication / comparison (which is matched up by my real work usage):
http://www.photozone.de/canon_eos_ff/427-canon_1740_4_5d?start=1
http://www.photozone.de/canon-eos/406-canon_1022_3545_50d?start=1

2) eg Canon 10-22mm at wide end at f/5.6, even with the Canon 16-35mm, I've seen an advantage to the APS-C 'cutting off' the corners of the lens....

Paul


170

-Rant- And there is no such thing as a FF nay-sayer. Some people think they prefer crop cameras over FF, but they just don't realize that their dinky toy sensors is utter crap in comparison to FF. I know this because I used to be one of them. ;) .. Oh, those lost years.

I agree... I was one too lol.  I don't understand the "reach" arguement.  Your lens is what gives you reach.  A smaller sensor doesn't magnify what's in the frame, it crops.  Even if the cropped image is made up of more megapixels than the same frame cropped from a full frame image, wouldn't the full frame image still be better in terms of IQ, bokeh, etc ?(assuming all else is constant...)
The APS-C sensor is sampling the central part of the image with 1.6 times the pixel density of the FF sensor. If the glass is up to it and you are in the lower iso ranges you get better resolving power and equivalent noise out of APS-C (assuming same generation of sensors.... can't compare new to 4 year old...). Use poor glass and the FF outresolves... and at high ISO FF has less noise. Sampling the smaller area is problematic for wide angle shots but benificial to long shots... Lenses can be made smaller, cheaper, and lighter for APS-C, but at the cost of resolving power.... There is no easy answer, just a bunch of tradeoffs.

Clarification on the highlighted bits above:

APS-C pixel density relative to FF depends entirely on the number of pixels. A 7D has more than twice the pixel density of a 5D Mk III. A Nikon D800 (FF) has a higher pixel density than a Canon 40D (APS-C).

If an FF image is cropped to match an APS-C image (i.e. the same subject taken from the same distance with the same lens, focal length and aperture), the two images will have identical bokeh.

Glad that there is SOME sense in this thread... (eg the above 2 posts). And a few others that state that the 7D (and even other APS-C cameras) are really decent. If people have issues with the 7D's AF, they've probably not learned how to use it. I have used both FF and APS-C, and know the benefits of both, and when to use what. Just because a FF is generally superior for eg landscape, portrait, etc doesn't mean it's 'useless' or 'a toy'.

I'm glad the original poster (OP) humbly admitted that he's not the world's best photog. He's not. (And note, neither am I - though I have some photos that have won awards and been greatly appreciated)  Some of the OP's photos are quite good, and I'm sure various viewers genuinely appreciate them.

However to suggest that equipment is more important than skill isn't true. It seems that the OP has managed to compose with his new FF DSLR and 50mm f/1.4  Kudos, but very similar images could have been produced on an APS-C with eg a good 35mm lens. The difference isn't as great as some people think.

I've seen people take stunning photos with point and shoot (P&S) cameras. Knowing how to capture light AND how to use one's equipment to maximum benefit is very important. Of course having great equipment helps, and there are some types of photos one can't do with a P&S.

And then there was the person who wrote: "i could never get over the crop factor killing the wide angle end of my lenses and hated the idea of getting lenses that couldn't migrate to any body i would get in the future."
Well it's a shame that people get EF lenses and don't realise there are so many great, dedicated lenses for APS-C. I have used various UWA lenses on eg Canon's 7D - and let me say that wide open at equivalent of 14mm and 16mm (in FF comparison) - the Sigma 8-16mm, Sigma 10-20mm's or Canon 10-22mm and Tokina 11-16mm, etc really shine. Often they're much sharper in the corners than FF can do with eg a 17-40mm or 16-35mm.

And someone else wrote that they couldn't compose with a APS-C - but could with a FF. Hmmm... again it seems people don't understand that you NEED the right lens for the job. I have used eg a 24-105mm on a 5D, as well as a 15-85mm on a 7D. Get and use the lens you need, but don't complain if you are using the wrong lenses on a crop body.

I've been both impressed with the 5DmkIII and 6D as recent FF cameras, and I'm also certainly interested to see what Canon will release with a 7DmkII... Different cameras for different purposes.  As someone else had stated, it's also important to remember that building both APS-C bodies and lenses to match saves significant costs. So again, there is place for both FF and APS-C, in terms of the target market / budget, etc.

Cheers, all.

Paul

171
Lenses / Re: What is your favorite lens and why?
« on: April 01, 2013, 10:19:56 PM »
This is a hard question to answer in some ways, but at the end of the day, my favourite lens is also my most used lens. For the past few years, the lens that has held this title in my lens arsenal is the Canon 15-85mm. Great image quality (sharp, contrasty, good colours) - fast, accurate USM AF and 4-stop IS.

I just find it a very godo combination-package - a quality walk-around, that can often meet most of my photography needs in the average 'day-out' shooting. 24mm - 136mm is a great focal length, and it doesn't really have any IQ failings. I take this lens when I'm capturing the official photos for camps and other events that I lead.

In terms of other lenses, I see all of them as more 'specialist' lenses, and for particular circumstances, they 'are needed' / my favourite.

eg: Sigma 10-20mm f/4-5.6 HSM EX (ultra wide angle, particularly for landscape, sometimes for architecture)
Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 USM Macro (for close-up photos of flowers, plants, insects, details - and even occasionally ad-hoc portrait)
Canon EF 70-300mm L f/4-5.6 IS USM - my wildlife and birding lens - for BIF as well as the outdoor portrait

Regards

Paul

172
Lenses / Re: Landscape Lens advice
« on: April 01, 2013, 10:14:11 PM »
Replying to the OP's initial question - I have no experience with the Ziess 21mm, so I can't comment there.

I really like compression in many landscapes (and have a particular interest in landscape photos in the portrait-orientation, where that compression can also work beautifully in many compositions).   Eg when I lived in Europe and visited Switzerland, taking photos of the Alps with details closer to the foreground ... magic!

Actually, I don't own a FF (my Canon DSLRs are 7D and 350D). My favourite landscape lens is probably the trusty Canon 15-85mm. It's got great IQ, and the USM AF and IS are very handy too. But perhaps more important than AF and IS is the focal range... from 24 to 136mm in 35mm format equivalent.

I find that 15mm on an APS (24mm in FF) - works VERY well for me for most landscapes. (I definitely really like those few extra mm compared to the 18-XXmm or 17-XXmm lenses). And 85mm on the tele-end is important for me (I find 50/55mm too short for a tele-end walkaround).

Though I do have an UWA (Sigma 10-20mm) - and it does come into its own in certain situations (and yes, there is a huge difference between 10mm and 15mm) - often I take my favourite landscapes around 15mm.  I really like the flexibility of a zoom when out bushwalking, sight-seeing, etc (I currently live in Australia, but have lived and travelled extensively around the world).

I'm not planning to upgrade from APS-C (looking forward to what a new 7DmkII may have in store for us).  Hope the OP will find the right lens for his/her needs.

Paul

173
Lenses / Re: EF or EF-S for 7D/70D
« on: March 27, 2013, 05:44:09 PM »
My 7D body has been shipped and should be delivered tomorrow, hopefully. So for now it will be the 18-55 kit lens I have. But since my full frame camera purchase is years away, I'm going to take the suggestions/advice of sticking to EF-S for the near future.

I'm still flip-flopping between the Canon EF-S 17-55 and the EF-S 15-85 as my "walkabout" lens. I know the 17-55 is better for low light and the 15-85 has more range.

Either way I hope to pair the "walkabout" with an ultrawide, either the Canon 10-22 or the Sigma 10-20.

My budget is limited so, I may only be able to get one lens for now and maybe another next year, in that case I'm leaning towards the Canon 15-85.

Thanks for all the input.

Sounds good. I'm very happy with my 15-85mm as my walk around - particularly because of it's great range, very good IQ and useability. I have the Sigma 10-20mm as my 'ultrawide', and 10mm is significantly wider than 15mm (though 15mm is nice to have as the wide end of a walk-around).

The Sigma 8-16mm is also a very nice lens, as are the Canon 10-22 and Tokina 11-16mm.  Actually in the ultra-wide selection these days, people are really spoilt for choice! When I bought my ultra wide, there were much fewer options, and I went with the Sigma, it's served me well.

As for 'low light' - when I want fast glass, I need primes.  That's why I didn't go the 17-55mm - it was too much of a 'half way house' for me.... not quite wide enough range for my walk around needs, and certainly the f/2.8 helps in low light... but a f/1.4 to f/2 is usually what I call 'large aperture' glass.

All the best

Paul

174
Lenses / Re: New 100-400 to Launch with EOS 7D Mark II [CR2]
« on: March 27, 2013, 09:41:06 AM »
Love my 100-400, would appreciate better IS, full sealing, and optical improvements. If it's as sharp as the 70-300L, awesome.  Hope they keep push-pull, but could learn to live with rotating extension.

Expensive, yes it will be.  But probably worth it.

100-400 F4 without 1.4 extender, Would be a good alternative to the 200-400 maybe half the cost?

Ha ha ha.  100-400mm f/4 means the same front element size as the 200/2, 400/4, 200-400/4, etc.  Would be a $7K lens easy.  Get off this, folks, it'll be f/5.6 at the long end, and likely close to $3K at that.

Yes, I'm with neuro on this..... :)

I have used Canon's existing 100-400mm L, and it can be a great lens. The newer 70-300mm L is definitely a design & size I prefer (and it's IQ is consistently better). Personally I prefer rotating ring zoom rather than push-pull, but I could get used to push-pull too.

I really love my Canon 70-300mm L on my 7D.  And I'm sure that a new (improved) 100-400mm L with a 7DmkII would be a welcome 'tele kit' for many. However the new / rumoured 100-400mm couldn't be a constant f/4 without being huge, expensive, etc... and I expect -  Canon have the 200-400mm f/4 1.4x as a separate target  lens.

Looking forward to this CR2 becoming a CR3... especially to see what the 7DmkII will bring! (Improved IS and if possible better AF, within still 'non-pro budget' for the 100-400mm will see some good sales, I expect).

Paul

175
Lenses / Re: 50mm: Wich one?
« on: March 26, 2013, 10:59:00 PM »
A lot of replies above highlight the exact reasons I don't currently own a 50mm.
Canon 50mm f/1.8 - poor AF (hunts and inaccurate, I had 2), poor bokeh
Canon 50mm f/1.4 - not sharp enough wide open, micro USM AF not so reliable
Canon 50mm f/1.2L - too expensive / too big and it has that focus shift issue
Sigma 50mm f/1.4 - too many reports of AF issues (also with different camera bodies)
other 50mm's (eg Ziess). I need AF!!

The Sigma 50mm would probably actually be my 'choice' if I was forced to choose. I'd go to a local bricks and mortar shop where I could try before I buy (the actual lens) - and I would use a shop that has a good return policy.

But in reality, I'm waiting for a new Canon 50mm USM, hopefully at f/1.4, but I will consider even if it's a f/2, and even if it has STM focus (rather than true USM).

IS would be an additional bonus (not quite an essential for me, but definitely a plus if IQ is still great wide open).

The new Canon 35mm f/2 IS USM is 'promising' - in that, I hope Canon keep the same format / standard in developing / producing a similar 50mm!

Cheers   8)

Paul

176
Software & Accessories / Re: DxO Optics Pro
« on: March 25, 2013, 03:27:08 AM »
I have been using DxO Optics Pro for some time now, and been through a number of upgrades / versions.

For my purposes, I really like it - batch processing - optimising my lens and camera outputs (I have 2 DSLR bodies and 5 lenses - all combinations of which are covered). It matches lenses and body combinations using modules, and produces high quality results. It's really targeted to doing batch work.

It's different to Photoshop.  I use Photoshop when I need to apply critical attention to individual photos (my 'favourite photos'  that I will upload, share, print, etc).  But in many cases DxO Optics Pro does a great enough job.

I use the latest version of DxO Optics Pro on a new 64bit quite fast PC - and it makes a noticeable difference (speed wise) operating under Windows 8 (64bit).  My photo management / view program is ACDSee. That way I feel I have the best of all worlds.

That's my take on it. Hope it's helpful!

Paul  :)

177
Canon General / Re: Announcements Coming Tonight
« on: March 20, 2013, 06:45:44 PM »
Cool... looking forward to the actual specs. Mainly because I expect any improvements (or the technology associated with it) will migrate across to other lines that may be part of my future digital photography equipment.

Currently I have a Canon 7D - a camera I really love using (and good ol' trusty Canon 350D). I really like the APS-C range Canon has at the moment, and if/when my Canon 7D is ready to be replaced / upgraded, something in the Canon 7Dnn will definitely be something I look at very closely.

The 18-55mm IS STM lens looks a good kit lens... if the optics are decent, that would be great... both with the STM focussing and IS.

I'm wondering if the new small DSLR will be suitable as a walk around for my gf.... she's a great photographer, and having a smaller camera would be great (she currently uses her Samsung phone - but obviously that is limited, particularly in terms of AF and IQ).

Regards

Paul

178
EOS Bodies / Re: Canon EOS-b Images Leak & a New Kit Lens
« on: March 19, 2013, 09:06:49 AM »
Wow, cool - specs! Interesting times ahead.  8)

179
Lenses / Re: How's the 70-300L?
« on: March 16, 2013, 12:46:27 PM »
I'm surprised Paul hasn't chimed in yet! Must be busy with other stuff...

Who? Me? Or another Paul?  :)

I have the 70-300mm L USM IS - upgraded from the Canon 100-300mm USM - and the L is night and day a MUCH better lens.  I've also used the Canon 70-300mm nonL, and Tamron 70-300mm.

The 70-300mm L is one of the best all purpose tele zoom lenses out there, portable, great range, awesome IQ.

Go for it!! (if within yr budget).

Paul

180
Lenses / Re: best NON L long lens
« on: March 12, 2013, 09:55:05 PM »
The OP wrote "Probably 300mm+ on a full frame.

So the 70-200mm f/4 L (non IS) - while a great lens, doesn't meet his stated criterion.

Some time ago I was looking for a new telezoom to replace my Canon 100-300mm USM (which didn't have the IQ at 300mm, and also lacked IS).

I considered the Sigma 120-400, Sigma 150-500 and Tamron 200-500, as well as the Canon 70-300mm nonL and Tamron 70-300 VC.  I would've gone for the Tamron, except I tried the Canon 70-300mm L, fell in love with it: was blown away with the IQ and usability (while still being portable) as well as getting a good deal on a new one.

When I tried the Sigma's, I found they had both a lack of contrast / sharpness wide open, not as sharp AF as I wanted, and the Canon 70-300mm nonL wasn't too bad, but not great in build quality, AF a bit dodgy and IQ generally quite good except wide open at tele-end. The Tamron 200-500 didn't meet my focal length requirements (but might the OP's) - but the IQ isn't the best

So in the end I thought the Tamon 70-300mm was the best pick of the bunch, decent IQ (lacking sharpness wide open at teleend, but not bad)... maybe the OP can obtain a good deal on a new one, or a decent 2nd hand copy. I'd steer clear of the variation incarnations of the older / cheaper Canon 75-300 ... they are plain poor. I'd much rather have the newer Canon 55-250mm (vI or vII)...   There is nothing like an L tele lens though (either the good zooms or primes). I'm very happy with my Canon 70-300mm L... it really shines, but I realise it's probably out of the OP's planned budget!

Regards

Paul

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