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Messages - jasonsim

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106
Lenses / Re: Which Gitzo: GT3532LS or GT3542LS?
« on: February 07, 2013, 11:26:09 AM »
The news Gitzo 3 series from a weight handling perspective should work fine.  Especially since the new 600 II weighs about the same as the v1 500mm IS.  I had the 800mm before the 600 II, so the greater weight of that lens and all the other stuff that bolts on was a concern.  That is what swayed me to get the 4 Series.  Most folks I spoke with actually recommended a 5 Series, but I did not want the added weight and girth (5 series is huge).

All I would say is, for the amount of mula you are spending for a new tripod, I would look to the future and get something that you will not have to replace (unless it breaks).  If you think that one day you will want to get a RRS tripod, I'd suggest just getting one now.  You might save some $$$ now by getting a 3 series on Amazon, but will loose a lot if you try selling it later to get the RRS.  Buy once, not twice or three times. 

You could always save your Amazon points to purchase things like a Lenscoat for the 600mm or a replacement foot, or Don Zeck front cap, etc.

Kind regards,
Jason Simmons

Well, I guess I am not quite convinced that the RRS is enough better than the Gitzos, which are themselves very good, that it warrants paying almost double the price. The Gitzo will certainly do the job, and as I mentioned before, all of the professional or other highly skilled bird and wildlife photographers I follow seem to use Gitzo exclusively, so it can't be all that bad of a brand. I also have no doubts that the Gitzo will last me for...well, forever, barring some random unknown event that breaks it for me ( ::)).

On top of that, I have a bunch of Gitzo parts and cleaning supplies, such as the grease used for the joints and such, that came with my other Gitzo Series 0 Mountaineer (GT0541). I guess I also feel it would be nice to stay within the family.

Sounds good to me.  I trust Gitzo and that's why I bought another.  I have three Gitzos and they have never once let me down.  The new version 2 of their systematic line is very innovative, you will be both impressed and very pleased.  RRS I am sure is great too and I have one of their monopods which is an absolute beast.

I too purchased my Gitzo from Amazon, used my Amazon Visa points and got the Gitzo rebate to boot.  From a value stand point, you cannot go wrong.  Best of luck!

107
Lenses / Re: Which Gitzo: GT3532LS or GT3542LS?
« on: February 07, 2013, 10:43:59 AM »
The news Gitzo 3 series from a weight handling perspective should work fine.  Especially since the new 600 II weighs about the same as the v1 500mm IS.  I had the 800mm before the 600 II, so the greater weight of that lens and all the other stuff that bolts on was a concern.  That is what swayed me to get the 4 Series.  Most folks I spoke with actually recommended a 5 Series, but I did not want the added weight and girth (5 series is huge).

All I would say is, for the amount of mula you are spending for a new tripod, I would look to the future and get something that you will not have to replace (unless it breaks).  If you think that one day you will want to get a RRS tripod, I'd suggest just getting one now.  You might save some $$$ now by getting a 3 series on Amazon, but will loose a lot if you try selling it later to get the RRS.  Buy once, not twice or three times. 

You could always save your Amazon points to purchase things like a Lenscoat for the 600mm or a replacement foot, or Don Zeck front cap, etc.

Kind regards,
Jason Simmons

108
Lenses / Re: Which Gitzo: GT3532LS or GT3542LS?
« on: February 06, 2013, 03:30:16 PM »
That's impressive, but Joe is svelte and, well, it was in a controlled environment.  Here is a Gitzo in the wild:



Another capture of a Gitzo in rare form:



:-)


109
Lenses / Re: Which Gitzo: GT3532LS or GT3542LS?
« on: February 06, 2013, 02:48:38 PM »
Hi,  I am 5'11'' and have a Canon 800mm and 600mm II.  I chose the GT4542LS (4 series).  It weighs slightly more than a 3 series and a whole pound or more less than a 5 series.  I use is with a Wimberley W200 II full gimbal head on top of a RRS universal leveling base.  Note that the RRS universal base is rated for 35lbs while the base made to go into their RRS TVC-34 / 33 is only rated for 25lbs.  Big difference.  The best thing is the GT4542LS does not cost that much more than the GT3542LS; the GT4542LS is also taller. 

The main benefit to getting the 4 Series is the reduction in vibration.  Vibrations attenuate quicker with the beefier legs.  Very important for those longer focal lengths. 

Kind regards,
Jason

110
Lenses / Re: Which 50mm (with AF) is best from f/1.4 - f/2.0?
« on: January 29, 2013, 01:26:05 PM »
My vote would go to the Canon 50 f/1.2L.  I've not tried the 50mm f/1.4, but have had three Sigma 50s.  The first two were terrible.  The last was very good, but decided to stick with the 50L for the weather sealing and build quality.

Here is a sample at f/2.8:



Here is one at f/1.8:


111
EOS Bodies / Re: Canon's Roadmap for 2013 [CR2]
« on: January 27, 2013, 09:34:02 PM »
I don't think a 7D II will be cheaper than a 6D.  Though I do think it will MSRP for less than the 5D III started out at.  My guess is around $2500, if it has 10 FPS and an AF system matching the 5D III's.  The 6D remember uses the more consumer grade body; fiberglass-type material.  The 7D II should come with a mag-alloy body like the 7D has now.  Remember that the 7D MSRP'ed at 1699.00. 

On another note, does anyone think that one of the 4 lenses could be a 135mm f/1.8L?  That would really be the only lens I'd be interested in.

Thanks and kind regards,
Jason S.

Surely they wouldn't price it above the 6D?

Of course they would ...

Of course they wouldn't.

The 7DII will be cheaper than the 6D. That's for sure.

There's a reason the 6D is named '6D': to signify that it is positioned above the 7D.
The marketing message here is that a FF camera is a always a step up from a crop camera, regardless of specs.

This message is needed to assert the premium-ness of FF; without it, it's hard to charge a (hefty) premium for FF.

112
Lenses / Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
« on: January 24, 2013, 01:16:48 PM »
If you don't have a 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM, I would definitely consider it and take it for a test drive even.  My experience, and I've had the 135 L and the 200mm f/2L IS USM (both now sold), is that the 70-200 II is faster to AF than the 200 f/2L.  I know, because I used to use both exclusively to capture indoor ice skating.  The 135mm could not keep up and many shots were missed because of it.

The zoom also allows for more shots.  Especially when you need to be stationary and the action is going towards and away from you. 

I sold my 200 f/2L IS and later on picked up a mint 200mm f/1.8L USM for half the price.  That is one of the sharpest lenses ever and mostly because it had lead in the elements.  Canon no longer produces elements with lead. 

Sample taken with the 5D III at 200mm f/1.8 ISO640:
 

 
Here are some samples taken with the 200mm f/2L IS and 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II wide open and at 200mm:

5d II @ 200mm f/2 ISO160:
 

 
5D II @ 200mm f/2.8 ISO320:
 


Hope that this helps.

113
Well...I'm probably due a hefty return once all the exemptions and credits kick in...but, honestly, don't know of something I must have.  Especially since I got a new 300mm f/2.8L II just before Christmas along with a 2x III, Gitzo 4 series tripod, Explorer tripod, and bunches of RRS stuff.  Still looking to sell my 500mm f/4L IS.  Maybe I'll set up a "baby sitters" fund so that I can make better use of the equipment I already have ;-). 

BTW, I think my paycheck was reduced by more than the 2% payroll tax increase.  I'll have to wait until next check, but perhaps the payroll department was withholding amounts commiserate with falling off the fiscal cliff.  Now that there was a fiscal cliff deal, perhaps the payroll dept. will catch up; wishful thinking I know.

114
HDR - High Dynamic Range / Re: Post your HDR images:
« on: January 14, 2013, 12:56:29 PM »
Soaring high like an eagle!  Enjoy


115
Lenses / Re: Soon to be Launched EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« on: January 03, 2013, 01:38:22 PM »
I suspect that the use of the built in 1.4x will need no stopping down.  I don't need to stop down my 300mm f/2.8L IS II + 2x III combo.  I use it at f/5.6 all day long:



When I used to have the 2x II, I would stop it down slightly to f/6.3:



As many have said on here though, I don't think this will be the ultimate birding lens.  560, is still on the short side.  I often need my 800mm, which btw you can buy for less than the price of the 200-400mm. 

I think this will be the lens of choice for those on Safari's where they are stuck in a jeep or something and need the flexibility of the zoom.  Also for outdoor sports in daylight.

Kind regards,
Jason

So its going to be very expensive, heavy and slow at the top end.

Same price as the one stop faster 600/4 II maybe.

If this lens is not sharp at 560/5.6 it will bomb.

Even the extremely sharp 300/2.8 II prime has to be stopped down to get half decent images with matching 1.4X converter. So how useful will a 560/8 be on this new zoom?

116
Lenses / Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x TC Information
« on: December 07, 2012, 06:20:39 PM »
Anyone looking for the 200-400 + 1.4x range, should consider a 300mm f/2.8L IS II with 1.4x III and 2x III.  I just got mine and that combo is super sharp and versatile.  Will be selling my old 500mm f/4L IS and old 300mm f/2.8L IS now.  If I need something longer than 600mm f/5.6, I have my 800mm f/5.6L IS.

The price of the 300mm f/2.8L IS II has also dropped recently to $6800.00 most places.  Add the 2% bonus most places are giving ( Amazon, BH, Adorama ) and purchase with a rewards card ( Amazon give 3x points for items purchased with Amazon Chase card) and you can get a 2x III for nearly nothing. :-)

Kind regards,
Jason

Well the big worry is will that 560mm be as clean as the old 500mm? If it is, then that old heavy 500 will be less missed than I thought.

And will I want to shoot at f5.6 for the duration of a day in shadows and late afternoons?....back to shooting at 400mm. Not that big of a deal. I do find when shooting with my 300, I am always wishing for a 400. 400 is useful for sports and larger wildlife. Quite a few times I had to run backwards so I could get far enough away for a full shot of a close Bobcat. Tree shooting would be great at 400 also.

Air shows, well 500mm was tight. I had myself wishing for a 400 a few times. It's too bad they could apply that inboard teleconverter to a 500mm. That would be a big seller. Sure, I prefer 500mm, but there are quite a few uses for 400. A revamp of the 400DO would have been great. I'm tired of my shoulders hurting! ;) So the 200-400 still doesn't help that much.

117
EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Canon 6D + 24-70mm f 2.8 mark ii?
« on: December 07, 2012, 01:11:42 PM »
If you use manual focus, then you might save some money and get a 24-70mm f/2.8L version 1.  You can get them used for 1200.00 or so. 

118
EOS Bodies / Re: Canon EOS 7D Mark II Information [CR1]
« on: December 04, 2012, 01:08:49 PM »
You have the Canon 60Da that was made specifically with the astronomer in mind.  It has the swivel screen and 18MP with 5.3FPS.  How much faster do you need for astronomy?

Or you can always invest in an extra long giant Gitzo tripod.  There are some that go above 94 inches.

cheap cameras and actual video cameras are what flip screens go on. If a flip screen is important you prob should be looking at video cameras.

Just because something is your opinion does not make it reality to all....

Have you ever heard of astrophotography? You attach the camera to the telescope and take pictures of the stars.... The best time of the year is the winter, when the cold weather means less moisture in the air and it means better pictures.... and as a general rule of thumb.... we point the telescope up, and that means that to see the back of the camera we either have to use a diagonal (90 degree mirror) that degrades the image and makes focusing a problem, or we have get BELOW the camera to see the back of it.... this means a lot of lying in the snow, and quite frankly, I prefer a tilt-swivel screen to lying in the snow.

I look forward to wifi enabled bodies where I can stream the view and controls to a phone or tablet that I can keep warm under my coat.... but then you probably think that wifi has no place in cameras either....

I'll tell you something else about astrophotography...... it happens a lot at night, and low light/ high ISO performance is very important to us.... so the idea of high end cameras with either wifi or articulated screens is very welcome to this segment of the population. Cheap cameras and video recorders just do not cut it here.

119
1.  600mm f/4L IS II
2.  200-400mm f/4L IS
3.  8-15mm L fisheye
4.  2x III
5. 17mm f/4L TS-E

If money was no option, I'd add the above to my current collection.

120
Lenses / Re: Canon lens setup for weddings
« on: December 04, 2012, 12:08:49 AM »
I'm not a pro nor a wedding photographer.  I have shot one wedding for a friend and can say that I'd only use a few zooms if I ever did another.  At the time I only had a 16-35mm f/2.8L II and 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II.  I brought along a 35mm f/1.4L and 85mm f/1.2L II, but found that fooling with switching lenses was rough and lent itself to missing shots.  I used the 85mm f/1.2L II quite a bit at the reception when I had more room to move around and the critical shots had already been taken. 

Now that I have a 24-70mm f/2.8L II, I'd definitely take it along with the 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II.  I'd have each of those mounted to a full frame camera. 

Now...if you are a second or third shooter, perhaps then you could use something as specialized as the 85mm, 50 or 35mm.   I attended a wedding recently in Brazil where there were three shooters:  one with a 24-70mm, one with 70-200 and one with the 85L.  The one with the 85mm had more artistic license and seemed to be more free to explore. 

--Jason

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