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Messages - jrista

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1456
EOS Bodies / Re: Will the next xD cameras do 4k?
« on: February 28, 2014, 04:31:04 AM »
...
Now Panasonic comes out with 4K video at 24 frames per second... still not fast enough to do anything beyond very slow moving objects

4k video at 24fps is not fast enough for ... anything?

Someone better tell Hollywood that the frame rate they've been using for decades in nearly all of their movies is too slow for motion!
Good point :)
They also have a lot more skill at movie making than I do... a LOT more...
My movie making has been recording musicians (slow), scenery while paddling (slow), and birds and a hyper kitten (very fast). 30fps is fast enough for the first two, and 120fps isn't fast enough for the second two...

Your still thinking like a photographer. When it comes to video, it's always 24fps, or 29fps, or 30fps. Those are the standard cinematic frame rates. They don't change. Doesn't matter what your filming, you always use those key frame rates. Video is quite different from stills in this respect...one of the things that is great about these lower frame rates is they are slow enough to exhibit motion blur, which is actually quite a desirable thing for cinema.

The Hobbit movies were filmed at 48fps. That lead to a lot of complaints from many movie goers. The lack of motion blur results in it being a LOT easier to spot the propishness of props, it results in movement that is too crisp, panning that is too sharp, etc. Hollywood cinematographers are going to have to discover a whole new batch of tricks to hide the fakeness of movie scenes with higher framerates. At 60fps, which is coming down the pipe, it will be even harder to conceal than at 48fps. And the stark kind of motion-without-blur will become even worse.

I think 48fps and 60fps may be a little ahead of their time. They are CERTAINLY ahead of the post-processing tools. I think a lot of the means cinematographers have to hide the fakery at 24fps is ultimately going to end up being done in post. I think motion blur, achieved by cross-blending certain parts of sequences of frames, will also ultimately be achieved in post, if higher frame rates are really the way of the future for cinema.

For anyone who isn't a professional cinematographer, however, 24, 29, and 30fps are pretty much the staples. Even if your filming birds.

Are you a cinematographer or video maker? I would be really surprised if you said yes as then you would know better than to say these things. 48/60 and more fps is required when things need to be shown in slow motion. Many times birds need to be shown in slow motion to create drama and to catch things which normal motion would not do.

Sure, if your filming slow motion. I've said as much earlier in this thread. But for standard motion video, your usually at one of the standard frame rates, because those are your playback rates. As far as slow motion goes, you can film up to 100,000 fps if you really want to...that means, technically speaking, frame rate is arbitrary. Slow motion is a special case, you usually buy a piece of equipment specifically capable of doing slow motion if your interested in slow motion.

But that's not what were talking about here. Were talking about average people "needing" 4k video to shoot average things. Your not going to be at 48 or 60 frames per second. People who would ultimately use a 750D to shoot 4k video are just going to flip it to video mode and start shooting 4k video...and that is going to be at 24fps. For the people who are a little more serious than your average person shooting average video, then they are likely to have something more capable. A 5D IV or a 1D X II, where you might actually have the option of 60fps to support some basic slow motion for cinematic video recording. However, that brings us right back around to the original argument:

Canon won't be offering that kind of 4k video support any time soon, not in their DSLRs. The 5D IV is a couple years away. The 1D X II is probably farther off than that. I suspect there will be a more cost-effective Cinema EOS model before either of those two come out with 4k video.

1457
EOS Bodies / Re: EOS 7D Mark II Announcement in Q2 of 2014 [CR1]
« on: February 28, 2014, 01:32:47 AM »
So, this is a rumor that there will soon be a rumor?

It is a discussion as to the accuracy of a rumour that there may soon be a rumour of a possible announcement that there may be a release of specifications in advance of a product release.

Translation: nobody knows


I.E. Rumormongering  :P

1458
EOS Bodies / Re: Hardware Hack for EOS Cameras Coming Soon? [CR1]
« on: February 28, 2014, 01:30:54 AM »
Hmm, new main board. That sounds like a total sensor replacement to me...Sony Exmor in a Canon body? Alternative to DIGIC as well? The thing I would be curious about is how will the camera perform overall. The 5D III is an excellent camera, and it performs well, in many cases exceptionally well, in pretty much every area. That includes IQ, even though it doesn't have the low ISO DR.

If someone slaps in a different sensor and image processor, I really wonder how that would impact the 5D III being the 5D III....

The whole thing sounds very suspicious to me.

One possibility is it's a custom firmware version with the ML hacks for expanded DR and Raw video added.

Sell it as a main board replacement for more profit, when in fact it's just a firmware update.

Phil.

Eh, I doubt that. They would get found out quick. This is the age of the social internet. If that's all they were doing, they would get CRUSHED by Twitter. They would be out of business in a week. It's got to be comething more than that, if they are doing a mainboard replacement. For a grand, it has to be something rather substantial. Taking apart a DSLR, making careful modifications, and reassembling aint cheap. Hell, to have the standard IR cut filter removed from a DSLR and replaced with one that passes 90%+ of the deep reds for astrophotography, it costs about $450! And all that is doing is replacing the built-in filter stack with a custom filter stack from Astrodon. The filter itself only costs about $150...the rest is labor cost, because it's very careful, painstaking work that requires a very skilled hand.

So, my guess is if this company actually exists and actually ends up offering this, it's far more substantial than just a firmware hack. It's new hardware. Either a new DSP, a tweaked DSP, or a new or tweaked sensor. I think new sensor, and a non-Canon sensor at that, if they are actually replacing the main board. It may not be a Sony Exmor, but there are a number of other sensors out there that offer great IQ and more DR.

1459
Landscape / Re: Deep Sky Astrophotography
« on: February 28, 2014, 01:11:49 AM »
With the low end rig, you are going to have a tough time getting the kind of image I did, not because I'm good (I'm not.) You need to very precisely align and calibrate your mount to be able to track accurately for a long time, because of the small aperture. You would need to be able to track stars for at least 10 minutes without "drift" (something you can correct for with drift alignment, a painstaking process). You really wouldn't be taking advantage of a cooled CCD there, so I really would just recommend using a DSLR. Save you some money (especially if you already have a DSLR). Use an Astronomik CLS filter with Canon DSLRs, and you can even shoot under the light polluted skies of the city.

Once you get more serious than a $400 OTA and a DSLR, you can move up the line to higher and higher grade setups. It starts getting more expensive once you get into monochrome CCD territory, because you have to use filtration. (Unless your just interested in pure monochrome imaging, some people do that.) Filters for astro are like filters for normal photography...you get what you pay for. Astrodon and Baader Planetarium make some of the best filters. At the very least, you would need LRGB filtration to use a mono CCD. If you live under light polluted skies, narrow band is the better option, as it cuts out ALL of the pollutant light, however narrow band imaging is much tougher...you still need very precisely aligned equipment, and you need to expose for at least 10 minutes, often as much as 20-30 minutes. Generally speaking, a CGE Pro or LS850 are BARELY going to get you more than 10 minutes unless you have exceptional skill at aligning. You need to move up to the high end mounts, especially those with absolute encoders, to really get the kind of tracking necessary for good narrow band imaging. Narrow band is a lot tougher to process in post as well...you have to do something called mapped color, where you map the SII, Ha, and OIII wavelengths to the red, green, and blue channels. But it isn't really just that simple, you have to make sure the images blend smoothly into each other...it's pretty advanced stuff, but the results are truly amazing.

If you move beyond 8-9.25" scopes or medium sized refractors (refractors are good, but these days generally don't have nearly the aperture of reflectors, or they do, it's just ultra costly, similar cost to the 600mm f/4 L II lens), then your really looking at a "permanent" setup. You are then either planning to build an observatory on your property, or build or rent one at a remote location like New Mexico Skies, where you can have remote computer control and high end robotic mounts (Paramount, ASA, 10Micron, Astro-Physics) under skies that are always dark, always away from light polluted cities. This is what a lot of serious amateur astrophotographers do, though...you would be surprised how many have about $20k to $30k in equipment and have built their own observatories on their land. All things considered, if your serious about normal photography, like wildlife or sports, you've probably spent about that much on your photography equipment (I know I've spent a little over $20k on my photography equipment.) So, while it sounds like a lot...it actually isn't all that much more than most people spend on their hobbies anyways (and, in many respects, a LOT cheaper than many hobbies...some people spend hundreds of grand on their "Fix up that old muscle car" hobby or their watersports hobby or whatever.) You can also kind of work your way up there as well. If you start with a really good mount, like the Astro-Physics Mach 1 or the iOptron CEM60, you have a very good mount that will last you for a very long time, and support most of the OTAs you might use (until you get up above the 10" cassegrain range...then you'll need something larger than a Mach 1).

There is another option for those who already own good normal photography equipment. The Canon L-series telephoto lenses make EXCELLENT telescopes. They rival high quality refractors like the Officina Stellare Hiper APO 152, which is a 6" (152mm) aperture just like the EF 600mm f/4 L II. The Hiper APO 152 costs about the same as well. Pretty much any Canon great white L-series telephoto can do the job, the old Mark I generation as well as the Mark II. You need to either get some custom parallax rings built to hold the lens into your mount, or get some ADM saddles and dovetail plates to bolt the tripod foot to your telescope. Along with some guiding equipment and a good midrange mount like the Orion Atlas EQ-G, and you have yourself a very high end setup capable of taking some amazing images.

The most popular lens to do this with, it seems, is the EF 400mm f/2.8 L Mark I. It's relatively cost effective, relatively long, has an ultra wide aperture so slapping on the 1.4x and 2x TCs gets you 640mm and 800mm focal lengths, which give you a good range with which to do moderately wide field astrophotography. (If you really want to use the 2x TC, it's best to go with the Mark II generation than the Mark I, but either will still do...the Mark I will just not be quite as pinpoint sharp, and will suffer from aberrations in the corners of the field.) The ADM saddle parts and necessary dovetail parts might cost around $350-$500. A basic guide scope, the Orion SSAG Magnificent Mini Autoguider, costs about $425. Along with the $1500 mount, and you have youself a pretty high grade astrograph setup. Obviously, this assumes you already have one of Canon's great white lenses...but with so many wildlife photographers around, that isn't all that unusual.

Even if you don't have a Great White lens, if all you have is a 70-200mm and a Canon 550D, you can still actually do quite a bit of astrophotography. You will need a good mount, the Orion Sirius EQ-G is a good place to start, however if you think you might eventually want to move up to a 6" or 8" scope, you should get the Orion Atlas EQ-G. You can mount the camera onto a V-type dovetail plate, which clamps into the saddle on the mount. Once you polar align the mount, you can then use the mount's hand controller and GOTO system to point your camera at anything in the night sky. You can  then either just use a normal remote shutter release and bulb mode to take exposures...and they could be very long, up to a few minutes even (without guiding, much longer with guiding). You would be blown away at what a good old 85mm or 50mm or 24mm prime can do for you on a tracking mount. Those are your ultra wide field lenses, and they capture either the whole sky, or constellation-sized regions. The 70-200mm lenses and 135mm lens are also excellent for wide field work, although not quite full-constellation size. At 200mm you can zero in on just the Orion Belt and Sword region of the Orion constellation, for example. If  you have a 400mm lens you can zero in on just the belt. If you have something like the Tamron 150-600, you can zero in on just the horse head and flame nebula region in the belt or just the Orion nebula region in the sword.

You can do a hell of a lot with just a lowly Canon DSLR, your existing lenses, and a $1000 tracking mount. At the very least, it's a place to start before you begin working your way up to that awesome $30,000 rig! :)

1460
Landscape / Re: Deep Sky Astrophotography
« on: February 28, 2014, 01:11:38 AM »
So, either lay it on me, or just shut up. Because otherwise I'm just done dealing with you. It's a waste of time.

It's good to see you are not angry with me, glad to hear that!  Yes Jrista, you are not a maniacal ego maniac whatsoever, and you are not out to get off on proving everyone wrong, and how smart you are.  You are not an immature self absorbed child whatsoever, are you?  Nor were your feelings hurt (obviously).  Since you're done dealing with me, that's fine, because I wasn't offering any deals, so we can both win on that one. 

Well, there we go! At least I got an honest, unmitigated, clear and open opinion out of you. I'm not surprised about it, either. I suspect you would say the same thing about Neuro as well. I also suspect that most people would believe your wrong on all counts, about both of us, and anyone else you might have such a similar opinion of. But wow...good to have the air cleared! Maybe we can leave the underhanded sideline insults behind us now, and move on...? (Of course, you'll always be free to dish it all out in PMs if you just, you know, feel the hankering, and really, PMs, so everyone else doesn't have to "deal", you know?)

How much of a price difference would just buying a telescope with a cooled CCD imager cost?  Couldn't you get like a 6 or 8 inch scope for like $2k to $3k, and a quite decent imager for less than $10k?  Total cost would be similar to maybe,  I don't know, a grand or two more, than your 7D and 600 ii combo.

Alright. First, I am spending my precious personal time here not because I'm some maniacal egomaniac troll who gets his LULS from proving people wrong. I spend my time writing things like this for the simple purpose of sharing my knowledge (with the honest intention of helping others expand their skills or improve their knowledge), and to correct misconceptions, debunk myths, and otherwise root out the twisted and convoluted "factoids" that many anti-fans may spew in order to trick unsuspecting readers into thinking something that is just plain and simply not true. I have said this in the past, but I'll say it again, because it's true...I really don't care what people think of me.

I care what people think, about information, the information they may be presented with and the context and other parties involved in an exchange of information, and when people misuse information to misinform and twist the facts, that bothers me. It happens a lot. We have quite a few members on this forum who just LOVE to twist and convolute the facts, either because they just despise the brand we all come here to talk about (i.e. Mikael) or because they have an agenda. THAT is why I persist in my extensively long, highly detailed posts. It isn't about me...it's really just about the facts. And that isn't for my own good...it's for the good of those who might actually take the time to read what I write. I want people to be well-informed about the facts, or educated enough to make a good judgment about subjective material when it arises (this is, after all, a rumors forum.) If you disagree, and truly think I'm wrong, and have the evidence to back up your opinion, prove it! I think I've proven myself that I'm quite capable of accepting when I'm wrong when proper evidence shows that I'm wrong. I have never claimed to be infallible (which is something an egomaniac WOULD do  ::)).



This is for anyone reading this, not just Carl:

If you are interested in getting into astro, the kind of equipment you've mentioned is pretty costly. For one, once you get into the realm of cooled CCD imagers, your into the realm of buying each piece individually. You need a mount, a scope, an imager (and all the related accessories), as well as the appropriate guiding equipment (unless you REALLY go all-in on the mount). And you need the kind of quality equipment that will allow you to take full advantage of a cooled CCD imager.

(...bleh, I'm re-stacking my image, and it's sucking up all my cpu....letters are trickling onto my screen at a rate of about 1-2 every second...)

A really low end CCD imager might cost you a few hundred bucks. A single-stage cooled CCD is going to be around a grand, however single-stage doesn't always cut it...it can't always combat ambient temperature well enough to maintain a constant temperature, which is really what it boils down to. You don't just want cold, you want constant cold. For that, you need a two-stage TEC system, and that bumps the cost up to around $3000. Once you move into the realm of cooled CCDs though, most of those are monochrome. That means you need a filter wheel. Those can cost a couple grand themselves, especially the ones with pre-filter off-axis autoguiding capabilities. The autoguider itself is likely to cost another grant. So were talking about $5000 to $7000 for a midrange 2-stage peltier-cooled CCD camera with filter ring and off-axis guider.

If you really want to go balls-to-the-walls, you can pick up either a full-frame CCD sensor (same 36x24mm size as FF DSLRs) or a large 4096x4096 square imager. These tend to run somewhere between $10k and $45k. Some of the larger square sensors use three-stage cooling with an additional watercooled option for the third stage. The sensors of the highest end models are often medium format sized. Pixel sizes can be as large as 9µm!

As for the scope, there are a hell of a lot of options. You can pick up an Astro-Tech 6" Ritchey-Chretien Astrograph for about $400. That is the same aperture diameter as my 600mm lens, however the f-ratio is f/9, rather than f/4. That is more than two stops, meaning you need exposures at least four times as long. My image above was done with 180 second (3 minute) exposures. You would need to go full 10 minute (600 second) exposures with the AT6RC. Getting longer exposures like that requires not only good equipment, but you also have to align that equipment extremely, extremely well (and it's best to use an off-axis guider (OAG).

You can get a cheap OAG like Orion's and use it with an SSAG, and you might spend less than $1000, but since were talking cooled CCD imaging, your probably in the $5000-$7000 CCD range now anyway. You really want a better OTA than the AT6RC to take full advantage of that fancy imager. There are larger scopes that will do the job. The Celestron EdgeHD 11" is one of them. It clocks in at around $3300, just for the OTA. It needs a mount capable of handling at least 40lb capacity (80lb with weights.) The Astro-Tech 12" Ritchey-Chretien Truss, a newly released truss-type cassegrain, runs for about $4500. It's the cheapest truss astrograph on the market, and uses the Ritchey-Chretien design used in all the huge multi-meter cassegrain type scopes in professional and university observatories.

You can also move to the next step up, the AT16RC Truss, which runs about $7000. Now with a scope like this, your into the realm where you can really take FULL advantage of a cooled CCD imager. The Truss design handles issues like flexure very well. It reduces weight, since you don't have a closed tube consuming materials. The open design eliminates temperature issues...as the air cools, you don't have to deal with a temperature gradient between outside and inside air. This reduces extraneous sources of tracking imperfections that affect the stability of your stars and their position on the sensor for longer exposures.

Beyond the AT16RC Truss, you move into the realm of RCOS and PlaneWave scopes. They also use the truss design, RCOS uses Ritchey-Chretien (RC) type mirror design while PlaneWave uses the Corrected Dall-Kirkham (CDK) type mirror design. These are the top two mirror designs for high end scopes, and they both have their strengths and weaknesses, however PlaneWave's CDK design seems to produce some of the best on and off-axis spots in the market. For wide-field imaging (where you don't intend to crop, rather you intend to use every square pixel of every image that comes out of the scope), where corner performance is just as critical as center performance, RCOS and PlaneWave are the best choices, as they offer some of the best off-axis performance on the market. You pay for it, however...as these scopes tend to START at around $15,000, and can be as high as $200,000.

Finally, you need a mount that will support your equipment. Working backwards from the high end, you have ASA mounts, Astro-Physics mounts, Software Bisque's Paramount, and 10Micron mounts. These all cost about $10,000 for the low end, and as much as $50,000 for the high end. They can handle scope capacities of 100lb to several hundred pounds (which is often the case with the larger RCOS and PlaneWave scopes.) ASA makes some of the most precise and accurate mounts in the world. The lowest end mount from ASA that might handle a PlaneWave is about $20,000. Their mounts have an intrinsic error rate that is less than 1" (one arcsecond), lower than any mount from any manufacturer listed. Mounts from Astro-Physics, Paramount, and 10Micron cost about the same, and offer similar performance (although most require periodic error control or PEC to be programmed and enabled first, or the addition of absolute encoders, which greatly increases cost). 10Micron mounts are a nice middle-ground. They always come with built-in absolute encoders, so they offer not only high tracking accuracy and precision, but they can also compensate for issues like wind, or can pick up exactly where they left off if there is a power loss (most other mounts must first "sync to home"). If your using an RCOS or PlaneWave, you are going to be using one of these mounts.

The next step down would be the high end of the midrange mounts. This is the Celestron CGE Pro and the Meade LX850. These mounts are not as precise as the top end mounts listed above, but they will give you good tracking accuracy, and with PEC offer precision under 2". They both offer sync to home behavior, so if your using bigger equipment (i.e. scopes larger than 9-10") that need a more "permanent" installation, they are the cheapest options that meet the criteria. They can handle scopes and other equipment weighing up to 90lb. These mounts cost about $5000. Astro-Physics also offers a $7000 mount called the Mach 1 that offers most of their high end quality and precision, however it is only capable of handling 45lb of scope and accessory weight, so it is often not an option for larger scopes. It'll handle the Celestron EdgeHD 9.25 or AT8RC well enough.

The mainstream mounts that most amateur astrophotographers use are the Celestron CGEM, Orion Sirius and Atlas, SkyWatcher EQ-6, and iOptron iEQ45 and ZEQ25 (and probably the forthcoming CEM60). These mounts cost in the range of $1000 to $3000, and usually have capacities ranging from 20lb to 60lb. They can handle most of the entry-level and midrange scopes, including things like Celestron's EdgeHD 9.25" and even EdgeHD 11", AT6RC, AT8RC, maybe AT10RC, Meade's counterparts to Celestrons EdgeHD scopes, etc. They will also handle most of the refracting scopes on the market with the exception of a few, such as Officina Stellare's larger refractors (and probably most of their reflectors.)

So, you have three major brackets of equipment that would work for cooled CCD imaging...low end, midrange, and high end. You can probably split midrange and high end into two sub brackets:

Low End (for astrophotography):

$1000 Orion Sirius EQ-G Mount
$400 Astro-Tech 6" Ritchey-Chretien OTA
$1200 Atik 420C Color CCD (cooled, ~30°C Delta-T)
$425 Orion SSAG 50mm Mini Autoguider
-------
$3,025

Lower Midrange:

$1500 Celestron CGEM or Orion Atlas EQ-G Mount
OR
$3000 iOptron CEM60
$1300 Celestron EdgeHD 8" OTA
$4300 SBIG STF-8300 Mono + 5 slot Filter Wheel (remote controllable) + LRGB color filters +  OAG (cooled ~50°C Delta-T)
--------
$7,100-$8,600

Higher Midrange:

$5000 Celestron CGE Pro or Meade LX850 Mount
$4500 Astro-Tech 12" RC Truss OTA
OR
$7000 Astro-Tech 16" RC Truss OTA
$5500 SBIG STT-8300 Mono + 7 slot Filter Wheel
$950 Astrodon LRGB Filters
$725 Astrodon OIII (Oxygen 3) 3nm Narrow Band Filter
$725 Astrodon SII (Sulfur 2) 3nm Narrow Band Filter
$725 Astrodon Ha (Hydrogen-Alpha) 5nm Narrow Band Filter
--------
$18,206 - $20,625

Lower High End:

$15000 10Micron 1000HPS or Paramount MX or Astro-Physics 1100GTO
$7000 Astro-Tech 16" RC Truss OTA
$5500 SBIG STT-8300 Mono + 7 slot Filter Wheel
$950 Astrodon LRGB Filters
$725 Astrodon OIII (Oxygen 3) 3nm Narrow Band Filter
$725 Astrodon SII (Sulfur 2) 3nm Narrow Band Filter
$725 Astrodon Ha (Hydrogen-Alpha) 5nm Narrow Band Filter
--------
$30,625

Ultra High End:

$33000 10Micron 4000HPS Mount w/ Absolute Encoders
OR
$37000 ASA DDM160 Mount
$50000 24" PlaneWave CDK OTA
$2000 Digital 10 filter Filter Wheel
$800 MoonLite CSL 2.5 inch Large Format Crayford SCT/RC Focuser w/ digital motor & accessories
$35000 Cooled Kodak KAF-16801 CCD, ~65°C Delta-T, 16mp 9µm 4096x4096 37x37mm sensor [Many manufacturers use this sensor, SBIG, FLI, etc.]
OR
$37000 FLI Cooled E2V CCD42-40 Back-Illuminated, ~65°C Delta-T, 4.2mp 13.5µm 2048x2048 28x28mm sensor
OR
$37000 FLI ProLine Kodak KAF-4301E Class 1 CCD, ~65°C Delta-T, 4.3mp 24µm 2048x2048 50x50mm sensor
$950 Astrodon LRGB Filters
$950 Astrodon OIII (Oxygen 3) 3nm Narrow Band Filter
$950 Astrodon SII (Sulfur 2) 3nm Narrow Band Filter
$950 Astrodon Ha (Hydrogen-Alpha) 5nm Narrow Band Filter
$950 Astrodon Ha 3nm Narrow Band Filter
----------
$125,550 - $131,550


1461
EOS Bodies / Re: Hardware Hack for EOS Cameras Coming Soon? [CR1]
« on: February 27, 2014, 11:11:46 PM »
Hmm, new main board. That sounds like a total sensor replacement to me...Sony Exmor in a Canon body? Alternative to DIGIC as well? The thing I would be curious about is how will the camera perform overall. The 5D III is an excellent camera, and it performs well, in many cases exceptionally well, in pretty much every area. That includes IQ, even though it doesn't have the low ISO DR.

If someone slaps in a different sensor and image processor, I really wonder how that would impact the 5D III being the 5D III....

1462
Landscape / Re: Deep Sky Astrophotography
« on: February 27, 2014, 10:36:18 PM »
Nice image, and good to see that the 7D did not completely cut out the H-alpha. H-alpha regions must be some of the harder objects to image with a non-modified dSLR.

The Astronomik CLS filter helps there. You have to expose for longer, but modern DSLR sensors don't completely cut off the deep reds. Less than 20% at H-a and even less at S-II get through, but over a long exposure duration, enough gets through that the red emissions get above the read noise floor.

... I hate to feed your maniacal ego though...
You know, you've been taking little jabs at me like that for days.
Hehe... he actually gave you a compliment, although his German way of expressing it hides it pretty well ;D

Being called a Maniacal ego maniac isn't a compliment where I come from...

... I hate to feed your maniacal ego though...

You know, you've been taking little jabs at me like that for days. I'm not really sure what set you off, but so long as you continue to slip little insults into your responses, I really have no reason to spend time responding to your questions. This isn't a thin-skin thing, either. It's simply a matter of principal. If you have a bone to pick with me, pick it, in PMs. Otherwise, just be cordial out in the public forums...that really isn't asking much.

Sorry to hurt your feelings, I will try to do better next time.

LOL. Again, my "feelings" aren't hurt. You have had a persistent issue with anyone who ever dares to contradict your opinions in any forceful manner. It isn't just me, Neuro has been on the other end of it just as much, if not more. You have a serious ego problem yourself...although yours has nothing to do with being to big, it really has to do with you being a weakling when it comes to confrontation or a conflict of opinions, especially when our presented with facts that you cannot counter because your own are FLAWED. You want to confront me, Carl? CONFRONT ME! I'm sick and tired of pussyfooting around with you. Buck up, be a man, and speak your friggin mind. Enough of this pathetic taunting from the corners. It's just plain sad.

And just to be exceptionally clear on this, because you seem to have misunderstood in the past, you and I are not friends. We never have been friends. We never will be friends. I deal with you because everyone deals with you. We all have to DEAL with you. Beyond that, your a persistent pain in the ass, always whining, always flinging sad little insults from the periphery, unable to cope when your proven wrong...at which point you resort to everything other than the cold, hard, painful facts...to mind games and button pushing and whatever else you think might somehow trip the other person up. It's very trollish, actually.

So, either lay it on me, or just shut up. Because otherwise I'm just done dealing with you. It's a waste of time.

1463
Landscape / Re: Deep Sky Astrophotography
« on: February 27, 2014, 06:12:55 PM »
I hope it's not inappropriate, but my last astro effort (and my only one recently) was the following. California Nebula, suburban/semi-rural site, UHC filter. I've been repeatedly astounded how bright this is in ultra widefield (~14mm) shots, so I decided to go closer. But no flats, which seem to disagree with this lens (pity), and no darks cos I forgot. Still...

Nice shot. It looks a little overprocessed...saturation is a bit harsh, and the stars have that funky halo around them. I'd pull back on the processing a bit, reduce saturation...and that would actually probably help bring out more subtlety in nebula detail.

Out of curiosity, how long was the exposure?

Ah, the haloes are due to using a very wide aperture with the UHC filter, which they're not meant for. I get big red haloes round the medium-brightness stars, so I use 'remove colour fringing' in Lightroom, but that does leave these grey haloes, which isn't what I'd prefer, but it's a limitation of my setup at present. I'd like to stop down to reduce this, but I can't afford the light loss, as my tracking won't go beyond 1-2m mins per subframe. Also using this lens wide open creates all sorts of weird colour casts across the image, so it needs a bit more processing than the 100L Macro, for instance. The upshot is you get a lot more faint stars.

I rather like the saturation, though I can understand why some would tone it down. It's always a tough balance. This is 113x1min exposures at f/1.2 (50D @ ISO 1600)

You should look into getting Astronomy Tools. It's a set of PS actions that might help you with your halo problems. It's pretty cheap, around $20.

I don't have Photoshop, I use Gimp. It's a lot of work, but the opportunities to shoot the night sky are so rare, it's not so bad - I can set aside a day or two every couple of months. Thanks though. I've found a better tracker, so I might well be able to use narrower apertures. Also, Astronomik have released full frame in-camera filters, so that should help too.

Have you tried just stopping down a third or two thirds of a stop? Quite often, with fast aperture lenses, that's all that's really necessary to clean up the bulk of optical aberrations.

That said, I'd get a better tracker regardless. The longer you can expose, the better. Signal strength is really the key thing that matters. Every time you reduce ISO by a stop, you can expose for twice as long. Going from say ISO 1600 to ISO 400 means you quadruple your signal strength, while only doubling your noise.

1464
EOS Bodies / Re: Will the next xD cameras do 4k?
« on: February 27, 2014, 06:09:56 PM »
As for 4k, that doesn't seem to be mentioned in any of Canon's current camcorder offerings. As far as I can tell, Canon bringing 4k to their camcorder line is 100% pure speculation, not even based on rumor. The only 4k devices from Canon that I can find are their Cinema EOS line, that's it.

I mean, unless there is some hidden site somewhere that has concrete information about Canon's 4k plans, at the moment, the only facts we have regarding that is the fact that it's Cinema EOS...and JUST Cinema EOS. Until that actually changes, I see no reason to assume Canon has big plans to suddenly drop 4k functionality and features into all of their devices.

Which is my point. Something happened in 2013 that resulted in all of the high end models that we would normally see being released staggered over a number of years being released all at once. They were dumped on the market, and IMO that was to make room for something new in 2014. The only new thing expected for 2014 is 4K, so, reasonably, that is what we will see.

Look at the G30 compared to Sony's AX100. Very similar cameras in terms of price, size, general form and target users, but with one major difference: 4K. How many G30s (or XA20/25s for that matter) do you expect Canon to sell when the AX100 appears in the stores in a few weeks? Probably zero. Why would any sensible informed person buy one when there is a far superior Sony product for the same price? Canon are well aware of this, so there will be something from them this year as well in that arena.

I honestly don't expect Canon's sales to change much. If there is anything Canon does well, it's build brand loyalty and sell their products. Canon has a ton of products on the market that are supposedly technologically inferior to the competitions, and yet they outsell the competition many times over.

Again, though...I wouldn't be surprised if Canon put 4k into their VIDEO products. That was never the point of the earlier debate in this thread, however. The point of the debate was that someone indicated Canon was on the verge of putting full blown 4k support in ALL of their DSLR products, starting with cameras that were just released. THAT is something I strongly dispute. What Canon does with camcorders really has nothing to do with what they plan to do with DSLRs. No doubt that video is an important feature of their DSLRs now, but that doesn't mean 4k video is suddenly going to show up in everything from top to bottom, high and and low end, starting now.

1465
EOS Bodies / Re: Will the next xD cameras do 4k?
« on: February 27, 2014, 05:03:24 PM »
You've switched to an entirely different market now. Camcorders ARE VIDEO DEVICES. The expectation for a video device in a video market getting 4k capability is far higher than the expectation for photography devices in a photography market that happen to also have video features to get 4k capabilities. DSLRs are still first and foremost still photography devices. There may be some broader market concerns, but to say that all Canon DSLRs should suddenly get 4k capabilities because Canon's camcorders did? Well, that is applying FAR too much weight to the video capabilities of Canon's photography devices. It's an added bonus, but the very vast majority of DSLR users use their cameras for photography. There are some specific models that have a history of use as low-end cinematography equipment, namely the 5D II and III, but that is kind of a niche use, and the 5D II was somewhat unique in that it brought a FF sensor capable of shooting video with high quality lenses to a market segment that was desperate for such an offering. Today, that isn't so much the case, there is heavy competition in the midrange 2k and 4k cinema market, and prices are becoming more and more reasonable.

As for what a "reasonable" expectation is, it really depends. What did Canon announce when they released the G30? From what I've read, the G20 and G30 are pretty different cameras. The former has a higher resolution sensor, the latter has twice the zoom range on the lens. They definitely don't sound like the same camera to me, so the fact that they both exist in the market at the same time indicates the G30 is not so much a successor as an alternative.

Canon have already said that they are going to place heavy emphasis on video. Do you think they are going to do an about face on that now?

Your impressions of the G30 relative to the G20 are incorrect. The G30 is identical to the HA20/25, but without the hand grip and (in the case of the HA25) the additional interface ports. It is more advanced than the G20 in just about every way. It has a better lens, improved light sensitivity, higher resolution on the sensor, it uses the DIGIC DV IV processor rather than the older DV III processor in the G20, it shoots 60p natively with higher bit rates. If the plan was to release the G30 when it was released, then it made no sense to release the G20 mere months earlier. It is obviously a successor to the G20, and it would have made marketing sense to release it a year later as a consumer variant of the HA20/25. The HA20 being released at the same time as the HA25 is also odd, since they are very similar. You would have thought that they would do the HA20 first, and then the HA25 a year or so later as an incremental upgrade with more bells and whistles. So the release of all that at the same time in mid 2013 was very odd (and seriously annoyed more than a few people who had just bought the then new G20).

Canon are not stupid, so there was clearly a marketing shift that occurred in the first half of 2013, and IMO that was a refocus on getting 4K developed ASAP. The G30 was essentially dumped on the market (along with the HA25) to recover the development investment.

While camcorders are a different market than SLRs, what was happening to them reflects an underlying shift that is going on in Canon, and that shift is going to translate into the DSLR market as well.

I think your conflating "successor" with "higher end". I do not believe my impressions are wrong, the G20 is a lower end model, the G30 is a higher end model. That's the only logical conclusion, given the FACTS about their release dates. Simple as that.

As for the HA20/25, what camera is that? It certainly doesn't seem to come up on any searches, either in google/bing or on Canon's site. (The only thing that did come up on a search was a lens called HA20). There is an XA20 and XA25, which seem to populate a higher bracket of HD camcorders. Again, though, the number seems to indicate the level within that bracket, not different iterations of the same thing.

As for 4k, that doesn't seem to be mentioned in any of Canon's current camcorder offerings. As far as I can tell, Canon bringing 4k to their camcorder line is 100% pure speculation, not even based on rumor. The only 4k devices from Canon that I can find are their Cinema EOS line, that's it.

I mean, unless there is some hidden site somewhere that has concrete information about Canon's 4k plans, at the moment, the only facts we have regarding that is the fact that it's Cinema EOS...and JUST Cinema EOS. Until that actually changes, I see no reason to assume Canon has big plans to suddenly drop 4k functionality and features into all of their devices.

1466
Has anyone compared the new 1066x cards vs. the 1000x cards? 

It might be an incremental increase in read speed, but the write speeds are going from 90-100MB/s to 150MB/s.  That's a huge leap, but I wonder if the 1DX/5DIII can take advantage of it or if the buffer depth remains the same or close to the Lexar 1000x cards.  I'm shooting sports next week and plan to buy a 64-128GB card but don't know if the new cards are worth it.

Can we rent cards... and would we want to?

All things being equal, storage is still the cheapest thing. Even if you spend $350 on a nice, big, super fast memory card, that is still a small fraction of the price of a 5D III or 1D X or 1D C. If your buying that kind of equipment, you might as well buy the right kind of storage to take full advantage of it.

1467
EOS Bodies / Re: Will the next xD cameras do 4k?
« on: February 27, 2014, 03:59:26 PM »
There is no way the 5D III is being replaced this year. Not a chance. It's a SUPERB camera, and the 5D II lasted closer to four years than three. I don't expect to even see CR2 rumors for the 5D IV until next year, and I don't expect it to hit the streets until the end of 2015/early 2016.

We will see, but no way can I see them waiting until 2016 to replace the 5D3!! And surely some sort of 5D3+ at the very least has got to be arriving late 2014 or early 2015.

Why, though? And what would be upgraded? I mean, if were JUST talking DR, then I really don't see it happening. I understand that DR is important, but it simply doesn't seem logical for Canon to release the 5D IV with the same specs as the 5D III, with the exception of a newer sensor (assuming they even have the DR stuff figured out...Canon is practically non-existent in the world of sensor patents, a world I check up on regularly.)

I am honestly curious...is it just that people expect Canon to release the 5D IV because its "time" to release the 5D IV? Or do people honestly think that the 5D III is overall (not just sensor, but other features) in dire need of an upgrade? The 5D II definitely felt long in the tooth when the 5D III came along. But the 5D III really doesn't feel that way. I don't hear anyone complaining about it, and the only thing anyone really ever asks for is more DR.

Personally, I don't think Canon will be sticking to any kind of timetable here. I mean, the 5D III will only be two years old come mid-March this year. It'll only be three years old by March next year, and at the earliest, I can't see Canon announcing a replacement until Summer 2015, with availability a couple/few months later at the very earliest...and that still feels too early.

I would certainly understand a firmware update late 2014/early 2015, though. Especially with video features.
They will update it when they update it :)
They have probably been working on the update for at least two years by now, and nobody (probably including Canon) knows when it will be ready. The lower end cameras (Rebels and powershots) get updated at regular intervals because thier sales are hype and marketing based.... newer models sell better than old.

The higher end models are updated for technical reasons. When there is enough technological improvement, out comes a new model. The Key is, "enough" technical improvement... and we don't know what the threshold is and we do not know what Canon's plans are.

If I were to bet, I would say that a 5D4 would have WiFi, touchscreen, a FF dual pixel sensor, and would use a faster storage medium.. and these things add up to a worthy upgrade bur also take time to develop... they are not going to rush to market with a half-baked camera... they will wait until it is solid and reliable. We are not even hearing rumours of prototypes yet... it will be a while.

Now your last paragraph sounds more like an upgrade! I'd expect at least all of that. Perhaps an improvement in metering as well (would be nice to see the 1D X meter filter down to the 5D line.) I agree, Canon has probably been working on the 5D IV since the 5D III release...but I still think a replacement is a ways away.

Regarding WiFi, if they do include that, I really hope it works better than I've heard the 6D works...which seems to have a very spotty connection. I'd personally rather have GPS than WiFi...if I need to tether the camera, I'll happily use a nice, long ethernet cable...I have some REALLLY LOOOONG ones. :P

1468
EOS Bodies / Re: Will the next xD cameras do 4k?
« on: February 27, 2014, 02:19:38 PM »
There is no way the 5D III is being replaced this year. Not a chance. It's a SUPERB camera, and the 5D II lasted closer to four years than three. I don't expect to even see CR2 rumors for the 5D IV until next year, and I don't expect it to hit the streets until the end of 2015/early 2016.

We will see, but no way can I see them waiting until 2016 to replace the 5D3!! And surely some sort of 5D3+ at the very least has got to be arriving late 2014 or early 2015.

Why, though? And what would be upgraded? I mean, if were JUST talking DR, then I really don't see it happening. I understand that DR is important, but it simply doesn't seem logical for Canon to release the 5D IV with the same specs as the 5D III, with the exception of a newer sensor (assuming they even have the DR stuff figured out...Canon is practically non-existent in the world of sensor patents, a world I check up on regularly.)

I am honestly curious...is it just that people expect Canon to release the 5D IV because its "time" to release the 5D IV? Or do people honestly think that the 5D III is overall (not just sensor, but other features) in dire need of an upgrade? The 5D II definitely felt long in the tooth when the 5D III came along. But the 5D III really doesn't feel that way. I don't hear anyone complaining about it, and the only thing anyone really ever asks for is more DR.

Personally, I don't think Canon will be sticking to any kind of timetable here. I mean, the 5D III will only be two years old come mid-March this year. It'll only be three years old by March next year, and at the earliest, I can't see Canon announcing a replacement until Summer 2015, with availability a couple/few months later at the very earliest...and that still feels too early.

I would certainly understand a firmware update late 2014/early 2015, though. Especially with video features.

1469
Landscape / Re: Deep Sky Astrophotography
« on: February 27, 2014, 02:07:46 PM »
... I hate to feed your maniacal ego though...

You know, you've been taking little jabs at me like that for days. I'm not really sure what set you off, but so long as you continue to slip little insults into your responses, I really have no reason to spend time responding to your questions. This isn't a thin-skin thing, either. It's simply a matter of principal. If you have a bone to pick with me, pick it, in PMs. Otherwise, just be cordial out in the public forums...that really isn't asking much.

1470
Lenses / Re: Review: Zeiss Otus 55mm f/1.4 Distagon T*
« on: February 27, 2014, 04:40:11 AM »
The Zeiss Otus was the first retrofocal normal lens for full frame cameras and it showed there was a night and day difference compared to the double gauss design.

(snip)

There is no prime that exists that's f/2 or faster below 150mm besides the Otus that doesn't have ridiculous amounts of purple fringing.

If the whole way it got so good is that it's retrofocus, shouldn't the 35/1.4 and 24/1.4 also have those same benefits, since they have to be retrofocus?

The purpose of going retrofocal in a standard prime is so you have more room to put corrective lens elements into the optical path.

The reason why 35mm and 24mm lenses are retrofocal is because there is no other way to do them. You need the focal length to be longer than 35mm when the distance from your sensor to the last optical element is 35mm+.

With a 35mm lens going retrofocal is just barley necessary (Canon can make a 40mm pancake after all for EF with a standard lens design). So you gain a ton of room for aberration correction. The Sigma, Zeiss and Nikon 35mm primes are crazy good for that reason. There is mountains of room to correct everything you can imagine. The Canon 35mm prime is so-so because Canon is lazy and complacent and they didn't feel like updating their 16 year old lens to a modern highly computer corrected design because it was good enough.

With a 24mm lens you don't get the same benefits, as a 35 or 50. Going retrofocal barley gets you enough room to put the basic corrective elements in, which is the same problem as you get with a planar 50mm lens, and because of the wide angles the elements have to be a bit larger so everything is ridiculously scrunched up, which leads to poor performance. To get around this issue Zeiss only makes a 25mm f/2 prime. Going to a slower aperture and 1mm longer focal length gave them just a little more room to correct everything properly, which is why they have the best wide angle prime. Compromising a little on the focal length and aperture was the only way to get the image quality they require.


That's also why telephoto lenses are so incredibly good. There is a ample room within the optical path to add elements to correct for anything and everything.

Having room to correct aberrations has a large effect on image quality, that's why wide angle lenses on mirrorless cameras (which have more room because they have no mirror) are so insanely good. Sony's 10-18mm and Canon's 11-22mm cheap consumer mirroless wide angle zooms are sharper wide open on crop than any pro wide angle zoom available for any Canon camera at any aperture, full frame or crop.

+1000

Excellent stuff! Spot on!

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