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Messages - pj1974

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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.


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


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).


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)


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  :)

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).



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)

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).


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!



Software & Accessories / Re: Which wireless radio control for the 5D3?
« on: March 07, 2013, 09:32:23 PM »
I have the Giga Pro (v1) - and love it.

Use it as an intermeter, remote release, timer (for settings different to the 2 second and 10 second Canon DSLR options), etc.  I've used it for macros, time-lapse, night photography, liveview, critical landscapes, etc, etc. Very flexible - and also has quite a few good settings.   8)

I've not had any issues with my home modem / router wireless interfering with it. (And yes, I have it on- and have some neighbours with modems). Maybe only some modems are affected (or it's country-specific / Hertz specific - I live in Australia).

The 'short auto-power down' of the remote/transmitter - can be annoying, but all one needs to do is half press the shutter-release to keep it active. The receiver has a longer 'auto-power down' (if it does at all) - I think I nearly always turn that off manually.

Like neuro, I like that I can use the remote/transmitter directly wired to the DSLR too. I have a Canon 7D and Canon 350D... and my Giga Pro has connecting cords that fit both of these cameras.  The Giga Pro wasn't the cheapest, but it was worth the $90 or so that I paid for it, and I've used it often - and as it's so small and handy, I can take it with me easily anywhere, any time.

Hope this helps.  :)


Lenses / Re: EF or EF-S for 7D/70D
« on: March 07, 2013, 07:14:28 PM »
I have used both FF and APS-C DSLRs for several years.  I currently own a Canon 7D and Canon 350D... and have owned both EF and EF-S lenses since I got into DSLRs in 2005.

My current mainstay of "go-to-body" and lens combination is the Canon 7D with Canon 15-85mm. It's vastly superior than the 17-40 in IQ sharpness, focal length range at both wide and tele-end, usability, IS - and at least on-par USM. The only advantage of the 17-40 is a somewhat better build quality (also incorporating improved weather sealing).

When I was considering what lens to use as my walkaround for my 7D, I had owned a good copy of the EF 28-135mm - but it is not as good as the EF-S 15-85mm even at equivalent focal lengths. I have an EF-S 18-55mm (but a non IS version) so that's "ok" the IS version of the kit lens is better  The newer EF-S 18-135mm STM is quite good (better than the non STM one).

Macro-wise, I went with the Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 USM, over above any 3rd party (mainly to do with AF and IQ).  I chose the EF 100mm over the EF-S 60mm, really only due to preferring a longer working  focal length when doing macro photography. I am glad I did... there was a small consideration that if can also use this lens on a FF.

I own an EF 70-300mm USM IS L - which is a truly great lens, and as photozone points out - is superior on a crop body (in terms of using the sweet spot / centre of the lens) - and gaining the 'crop factor' advantage, that is presents a 480mm equivalent image on a APS-C body. But even if this 70-300mm L would have been an EF-S... I still would have bought it!

Finally in UWA land, I own a Sigma 10-20mm HSM EX... which is a great lens. When I was considering UWAs, there was much less choice then than there is now. I went with a new Sigma 10-20 based on a much better price than I could get a new EF-S Canon 10-22mm USM for. My Sigma gives me sharp corner to corner images at the equivalent of 16mm in 35mm format.

Lens wise, I say buy what you can budget / ie what is affordable to you - and what you will use often now. That's my 2cents worth.


EOS Bodies / Re: Canon EOS 7D Mark II Information [CR1]
« on: March 07, 2013, 05:57:36 PM »
At this stage I don't necessarily need a replacement / upgrade to my 7D....


That's what they all say at first... keeps the wife from poisoning them till it is too late  ;D ;D

:D  Phew... that sounds scary!  Yes... well in my case I am not married - I'm divorced (but I don't believe photography had anything to do with that). Therefore at this stage I have no reason for poisoning fears when I am considering photography equipment...  ;)

Having written that, I have a secure and decent paying job, and I don't spend a fortune on photography equipment... I prefer to use more of my money for more important things: eg projects to benefit people, etc.

Maybe if I do remarry one day... I'll take more things into consideration... however I'll tackle that when I come to it - and with a degree and background in accounting, I generally don't have troubles with sensible budgetting.   8)

Come-on new technology... it's always a good thing!


EOS Bodies / Re: Canon EOS 7D Mark II Information [CR1]
« on: March 07, 2013, 04:23:50 PM »
Nikon would Just love the 7D mk 2 to be 3k, would make the d400 pretty easy to sell ;D (and yes I am a Canon user, but also a realist!!!!!!!)

Canon knows which side of their bread is buttered... for reasons I discussed few posts earlier, it is likely 7D2 will come in under 3K...well under probably.

If Canon priced their cameras based on clueless fanboys drooling over gear while living in their parents' basement playing dungeons and dragons and wondering about Taylor Swift's bra size... we would be living in an alternate universe with Minolta as king of the market ;)

^THIS is gold!!   ;D   LOL.

And I agree, the 7DmkII will most likely come out quite well under $3,000 US (and hopefully in some they can be purchased at lower prices).

I bought the 7D very soon after it came out, so I paid a bit of a premium for that, but I wanted the camera then - and I haven't looked back. It's a great all round performing DLSR.

At this stage I don't necessarily need a replacement / upgrade to my 7D, but if the 7DmkII has features and image quality that really impress me, then I will consider buying it soon.


Lenses / Re: your goto everyday lens and why?
« on: March 04, 2013, 08:05:43 AM »
Canon 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 USM IS on my Canon 7D.

Love that combo... awesome image quality, portable, very versatile with USM & IS - and it didn't cost the earth!


Sounds very promising!!

Hopefully this technology will also 'trickle through' / cross-polinate to stills, as I believe it could really benefit DSLR photos too! :) Any advancement is great news.


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