December 21, 2014, 03:29:39 PM

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Messages - jd7

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And it's just as sad that I agree with most pundits regards Canon stooping to using Sony Sensors in their top of the line DSLR cameras, especially when Nikon does, Phase One does, Hasselblad does, Pentax does, Olympus does & even Apple does (I know, it's not a dslr it's a phone), but you get the picture.

Groan ... was that meant to be a pun?

Lenses / Re: Reviewing my lens setup (5D3 portraits)
« on: November 03, 2014, 07:39:39 AM »
Having read your answers makes me think about the 24-70 F4 IS again (£550 in UK but only 1 year warranty). A newer hybrid IS and the macro mode would come in handy now and then, but of cause i loose the long end. Having read about the lenses on lensrentals, the decrease in sharpness around 35-50mm worries me. In this area the 24-105 seems to win, even at F8 theres a clear difference. But tests charts is one thing - is it really that noticable in real world pictures??

I can only say I have ended up pretty happy with my 24-70 F4 IS, after getting it serviced by Canon.  If interested, you can read more at

I'd be interested to know if anyone else has had an experience similar to mine.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: So what makes a camera a "pro" camera?
« on: October 23, 2014, 05:25:04 AM »
Apparently when it has two memory cards ... according to KR ...

or at least when KR says it's professional ...

But then again, maybe gear isn't truly professional unless KR says it's "fully professional"?



Joking aside, I think the answer is there is no such thing as a professional camera.  People are professionals - which comes from a combination of knowledge, skill and application (and some would say earning money therefrom).  Gear cannot possess those attributes. 

Gear can be designed for professionals, ie designed with a focus on the likely/perceived needs of professionals - which generally speaking will go beyond high quality optics and AF to features like tough/resilient build quality and weather-sealing (eg do you want your professional photographer failing to get good shots of your event because a bit of rain sent him/her scurrying inside to protect his/her equipment?) - but that is a separate issue.

Lenses / Re: 24-70 swap
« on: October 08, 2014, 05:44:59 PM »
I have both as well.

However, I have different impressions. Both lenses have their own strengths and weaknesses and I have come to the opinion that one can't truly replace the other.

The 24-70 has better:
Performance at 24mm, particularly in corners
Distortion control at 24mm
T-stop advantage (slight increase in exposure despite both being f4)

The 24-105 has better:
Range (71-105mm)
Performance in the 50mm range (significantly better, too)
Performance at/near MFD

At 70mm both seem to be about the same TBH.

Now, you may mention that I didn't bring up the close focusing ability of the 24-70 as an advantage over the 24-105. Why? I find it to be incredibly soft, plus one has to get so close that the lens blocks light. Not that useful in my opinion, but nonetheless it may find some use when I can't be bothered pulling the 100 macro out.

Have you sent your lens to Canon and had it calibrated? If not, I really recommend you try it.

My 24-70 f/4 was very soft at 50mm when I bought it, and not great at 35. 70 was better but 24 was certainly best. Sent it back to canon for calibration and it's a much better lens now. It's consistently good throughout the zoom range, from f/4.

As for macro mode, i agree the short working distance isn't helpful (although I still use it for occasional macro shots) but I don't feel like my copy is soft.

Wanted to add my thanks to jrista for taking the time and effort to post these examples. Very interesting to get a chance to play with an a7r raw file.

Leaving aside the issue of how useful it is in practical application, the IQ the a7r retains when the exposure is pushed certainly seems impressive to me. That said, there is something about the 5D3 image I still like too - something about the light/tone it shows. And looking at the detail of what you can see through the windows, especially the right hand window, i am wondering if the 5D3 has actually done better there. I will have to play with the a7r image some more tho, to see if it's a pp thin thing.

Third Party Manufacturers / Re: Nikon's 2.300$ D750 said to best 5DIII
« on: September 30, 2014, 04:52:24 PM »
I'd like to see more reviews yet but I have to say the D750 does look like a very good camera, especially at the price. I like my 6D a lot and I'll see what Canon comes out with next, but this is the first time I've seen something which has made me give a moment's serious thought to switching from Canon. A camera body alone is not a system of course, but still ...

Technical Support / Re: Dynamic Range questions..
« on: September 26, 2014, 10:07:32 PM »
In general, Sony EXMOR has more DR until ISO400. Canon has more DR at ISO above 1600.

I certainly am not interested in any dr mud slinging, but it has to be noted that Sony's advantage at low iso is very large and noticeable while Canon's advantage at higher iso (see individual model dr curves) are minor.

I'm generally looking here, though it's mostly dxo data:

I am finding that my 6D has fair DR at 100 and a very high DR in comparison at higher ISO's.

My standard comment: Use Magic Lantern's dual_iso, it boosts your dynamic range at iso 100 to about 14.5+ stops at (nearly) no loss of iq but usability hassle. It also will have a mini_iso module in the near future adding 1/3-1/2 ev of dynamic range just like that, it's about the same optimization Canon did to the 1dx.

The thing to consider, is that very high ISO's like I often use, there is very little DR to begin with.  Even a small amount is a big improvement.  When DR is only 5 stops, 1/2 stop is a noticible improvement for virtually every photo, but the average photo has no noticible improvement with a 20% DR at ISO 100, you have to have poor lighting with deep shadows or a poor exposure to see the benefit.

+1.  That is the conclusion I came to as well. 

I have to admit I haven't personally tested an Exmor sensor camera to see for myself exactly how much difference Exmor makes at low ISO in real world shooting (or at least my real world shooting!), so I suppose that means take my opinion with a grain of salt, but for my needs DR/latitude at higher ISOs seems more important - noting I'm pretty happy with the photos I get with my 6D at low ISO even if they may lag behind what Exmor can produce.  (I really should get hold of a camera with Exmor one day and try it out for myself, I guess.)

I don't understand all the threads (I'm not talking about this one) which degenerate into heated dispute about Canon v Exmor DR.  Every system has a set of trade offs so it is just a case of choosing which set of trade offs suits you personally prefer.  Some photographers will value DR/latitude at low ISO very highly, in which case a system which includes a camera with Exmor is likely to be very attractive (subject to weighing up all of the other trade offs, of course).  Others won't value DR/latitude at low ISO so highly, so a system which includes a camera with Exmor isn't necessarily as appealing (but again, subject to weighing up all of the trade offs).  All else being equal I'm all for more DR if it is on offer, but in reality all else is not equal.

Lenses / Re: Lenses that you want Canon to release next
« on: September 17, 2014, 07:07:28 AM »
The 85/1.8 is a sweet lens, just a pity about the CA. If they fixed that and kept a similar IQ, price & size... mmm....
Exactly my thought.
Improve it optically, less CA, little bit more colors and contrast.
New ring USM, aperture design and maybe improve the mechanics a bit.

... and having tried the Sigma 85/1.4 I was not really happy but I saw what could be possible.

85 1.8 II sounds great to me too, although I think 85 1.8 IS would be even better (as long as it doesn't push up the weight/size/price too much!) ... or perhaps an 85 1.4.

Other than that, 135 2L IS (I keep trying to come up with a way to justify adding a 135 2L to my kit  :) ) and 50 1.4 IS (or even a 50 1.4 II if there are problems putting IS in a lens with a 1.4 aperture).

Maximilian - out of curiosity, what weren't you happy about with the Sigma 85 1.4? The reviews I've seen are generally very positive, with the only real complaint being some reports of AF issues. I've been thinking about trying to pick up one second hand to give it a go, so I'd be interested to hear what you didn't like about it.

Software & Accessories / Re: Blackrapid strap slips
« on: September 17, 2014, 06:34:03 AM »
Thank you all for the replies - much appreciated.

Since it sounds at least possible my strap is not working as it should I think I will start by contacting BR and see what they have to say.  If that doesn't lead to a solution I will give the other suggestions in this thread a go.

Apart from the length slipping I do like the BR strap so I'm crossing my fingers I will get it sorted out one way or another.

Thanks again.

Software & Accessories / Blackrapid strap slips
« on: September 15, 2014, 11:03:09 PM »
Hi all

I have a Blackrapid Sport strap.  The problem I'm having is that every time I adjust the length of the strap, the strap pretty quickly extends back to its maximum length once I start using it.  If I'm using my 70-200 2.8, I'd be lucky to have walked for 10 minutes before the strap has slipped back to it's maximum length.  Basically, even though I really like the idea carrying the weight on my shoulder and across my body, in practise I'm finding the strap is not really usable.

I've seen quite a lot of good reports about the Blackrapid straps, so do other people not have this problem?  Anyone got any solutions?


EOS Bodies / Re: More Images of the Canon EOS 7D Mark II
« on: September 15, 2014, 10:51:47 PM »
This is not a troll attempt, i really would like to hear people's thoughts on the upcoming 7D Mark II when put up against the new Nikon D750. It seems the 7D Mark II will use an improved 70D sensor and the D750 uses an improved version of the D610 sensor. I realize this is an APS-C camera versus a Full Frame camera but the D750 has an APS crop mode that you can use which would mean you basically have two cameras in one. The DxOMark ratings for the D610 versus the 70D are drastically different with the D610 ranking a 94 and the 70D ranking at 68
- this disparity is bound to remain in the two new models given their base technologies as mentioned. Besides the obvious boost that the 7D Mark II will have over the D750 in terms of fps and the phase detect for video use, what other reasons are there for choosing the 7D Mark II over the full frame D750? The pricing will not be so different as the D750 is at $2,299 and the 7D MK II is expected to come in at ~$2K.

Thoughts anyone?

At that point you're looking at the system as a whole and not the body itself.
The reason you would get a 7D2 over the D750 is that it's a Canon, you get the lenses, UI and controls, customer support. Nikon has been fixing a lot of the complaints people had, but in the long run I'll still take Canon's lens selection as a primary reason to stay with the system. They don't really show any signs of slowing down in the number of awesome lenses they produce.

The 7D2 seems like it will be a great action camera (although there is still the question over low light performance), but all else being equal (which it is not, of course) the D750 is the camera which would interest me far more.   I'm not putting my Canon gear up for sale just yet, but I'll be looking forward to finding out what Canon has to offer when they release their next round of FF cameras.  A 6D with AF and FPS comparable to the D750's sounds great to me (and I guess I'd take the D750 sensor too if it was on offer).

(OK, in anticipation that someone will say I could always just get a 5DIII, yes that is true, although it would be heavier, bigger and more expensive.  Still, it's always an option.)

Third Party Manufacturers / Re: Nikon announced D750
« on: September 12, 2014, 11:30:50 PM »
I am very impressed with the Nikon D750. Yes, I believe this is a camera that could trigger a person to switch platforms. The thought ran through my mind for sure.

Positives: FF, Built-In WiFi, Dual SD card slots, Good AF, 24+ MP Sensor, 6.3fps
Negatives: 1/4000 shutter speed limit, Weather Sealing?
Neutral: Articulating Screen, Built-In Flash, ISO

I'm not about to rush out and sell my Canon gear and switch, but I agree (at least on paper) the D750 does look like it might be a great camera for many people/purposes (not saying it will suit everyone, of course).  I basically agree with your list of pros and cons, although I'd rate the articulating screen and the built-in flash as negatives if they compromise weather-sealing or durability (but do they?).  I also have a question mark over the ergonomics.  Looking at the screenshots of the D750, I am unconvinced about the ergonomics, but of course you really need to shoot with one before deciding about that.

I have to say I feel like Nikon has had a habit of making products with great specs but which (as far as I can tell from what I've read) in actual use often are no better than, and sometimes worse than, comparable offerings from Canon and others.  (I'm not talking about the SoNikon sensors though - but there has been enough written about them already.)  I guess we need to see how the D750 actually performs, but if the D750 lives up to its specs, I'd be pretty happy about it if I shot Nikon.

It will be interesting to see what the next round of full-frame cameras from Canon will bring.

Edit - just saw some posts above wondering about the D750's buffer.  That's definitely something to find out more about!

Lenses / Re: 24-105 vs 24-70 2.8 ii
« on: September 12, 2014, 09:20:24 PM »
Yeah, the f4 24-70, or at least the one I tried at the local store, is DEFINITELY weakest at 50mm. Dare I say that one was worse than my 24-105 is at 24, its weakest point (w/o the distortion)...there was NO sharp area of the image at 50mm f4. Anyway, I'd like to try another copy - maybe that was just a mediocre one.

Between the 24-105 and the 2.8 24-70 - unless you shoot a lot of indoor social events (and thus need the 2.8 / IS mattering less in those situations), or you have a big budget, then the 24-105 is still a good lens with decent sharpness and great value for price. Plus IS makes it more versatile, too.

My 24-70 f4 was definitely poor at 50mm, and weak at 35mm, when I first got it.  I sent it back to Canon though, and it came back greatly improved.  I'm pretty happy with it now, throughout the whole zoom range.

If you're interested in knowing more, see

Lenses / Re: Canon 24-70 f/4L IS disappointing?
« on: September 12, 2014, 09:17:23 PM »
In case anyone stumbles over this old thread at some point and is interested to know how the story ended ...

Having done some more testing, I'm pretty happy with my 24-70 4 IS now.  The IQ is pretty consistent all the way through the zoom range now.  It's possible its weak spot is now at 35mm (f/4), and I think it might not be quite as good at 24mm (f/4) as before I sent it to Canon (but it's marginal - I might be imagining that), but really its consistent - and very good - throughout.  It's a vast improvement over its performance before I sent it back to Canon, that's for sure.

It's interesting reading around the internet that some people report the 24-70 4 IS being great throughout the zoom range (eg see PhotoNet, and see SLRlounge's "lens wars" series including their 50mm "wars"), while many others report it being weak in the middle of the zoom range, especially at 50mm.  Sporgon mentioned in an earlier post that Roger Cicala had found the 24-70 4 IS has an unusually high number of adjustable elements.   Maybe Canon bit off a little bit more than they can chew with the 24-70 4 IS, in the sense the QC required to make it consistently good out of the box would mean it would have to be priced at a level which isn't going to fly from a commercial point of view?

Anyway, the story has ended well for me, so I'm happy!

PS - It seems pretty clear it's not going to be what you're looking for if you're serious about macro photography, but as someone who isn't that much into macro, I'm definitely having some fun with the (semi) macro mode on the 24-70 4 IS.

Lenses / Re: What New Lens are You Most Excited About?
« on: September 12, 2014, 08:43:05 PM »
Personally the Canon EF 400mm f/4 DO IS II intrigues me. Why? How good will it be?  How much will it cost?

Same. I'm not going to buy it but I'm very curious to see what they've done with the technology.


I'm vaguely interested in the two Sigma 150-600 lenses too, but I doubt I'll buy either of them. Overall though, I'm not really excited about any of the recently announced lenses.  I was really hoping we would see an 85 1.8 IS!

PS - If I was shooting on a crop camera, I'd definitely be interested in that 24 pancake, assuming it's priced the same as the 40 pancake.  I've seen some negative comments on CR about the 24 pancake, but my bet is Canon will sell a lot of them.

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