October 26, 2014, 01:31:50 AM

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Messages - mdmphoto

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Speedlites, Printers, Accessories / Re: Laptop Editing - Best Setup
« on: August 14, 2014, 11:00:27 AM »
an external monitor is a good idea that I use sometimes when I'm working at home, but a lot of my work is done on location.  I think a 17" laptop's screen would probably be more useful depending on specs, but then I'd have to lug it around, and the 15.6 is plenty when travelling.
I ALWAYS get some damage plan; before I would get Dell's complete care, including accidental damage, but more recently I've purchased a warranty from SquareTrade for a family laptop that includes accidental damage, but I've not had the opportunity to use.  Warranties are an additional expense, but they sure beat having to buy another laptop or camera or lens due to accidental damage or other failure that's more likely to happen with portable electronics.  I've gotten all-but a new laptop twice over the years from covered repairs from parts simply wearing out, or, yes, accidental damage...

Speedlites, Printers, Accessories / Re: Third-pary Grip. Safe?
« on: August 14, 2014, 05:12:00 AM »
I've joyfully used 3rd-party grips for 40-, 50-, and 7D for the longest time.  I started with a canon grip on the 7D,but when the battery door failed I bought a polaroid branded one which added features: an intervalometer & remote control amongst them, at a fraction of the canon price, and it seems a lot sturdier, and has lasted me more than twice the life of the canon.  I enjoyed similar results with the xxD grips.
I bought one for my 6D and quit using it after a couple of months.  When I used it the camera exhibited various malfunctions including freezing (shutter not functioning on camera, turning itself off, shutter sticking, and not awakening from sleep mode.  Missed several shots.  It wasn't the 3rd party batteries which were marketed as chipped for 6D, as they have continued to work once I ditched the grip...

Speedlites, Printers, Accessories / Re: Photo Paper advice
« on: August 14, 2014, 05:03:13 AM »
I got that canon paper deal last year too - got a bunch of premium pro letter- and 4x6: it seems to be an end-of-year event.  Anyway, I have an epson 3800 and use epson exhibition fibre, premium luster, ultra-premium presentation paper matte, and canvas (old product, haven't had a chance to try the new canvas products), mostly. I did like Ilford Gold Fibre Silk, but now that they're gone I lean on the exhibition fiber while still hanging on to my last few sheets of the Ilford for special projects. The exhibition fibre finish is similar to the ilford gold fibre: they're both baryta papers that feature a muted sheen, as opposed to a gloss, finish, a very muted texture, and work well for color and BW photo prints as they have a great dynamic range.
I've been using Red River Polar Pearl metallic, and like the print results, but am curious about longevity; info on the web seems mostly ambiguous.  Prints have a cool-white metallic sheen to them that makes my landscapes, cityscapes, and architecture shots seem 3D-ish.  Red River offers a buffet of different papers in various sizes, including post- and greeting cards.  In some cases they also compare their papers to other more well-known brands' offerings.  I am intrigued, but as I said, I would like some definitive word on longevity.
Anyway, I got to the papers I use after trying many, and many other papers; some by suggestions from people I knew, some suggestions from people at esteemed sites like this one, some from marketeers' spiels, and some 'cause they were on sale at local shops, like the dear departed Calumet Photo.
I'd be open to suggestions from others for types of papers that might yield my kind of results, then diddle around with the different brands and marketing jargon on my own - other than avoiding anything that is universally considered to be crap; i.e. "photo paper" from office-product warehouses...

Speedlites, Printers, Accessories / Re: Laptop Editing - Best Setup
« on: August 14, 2014, 04:37:18 AM »
My laptop is a soon-to-be 3yr old Dell XPS 15 w/ I-7 2720, 8gb 1333 mhz RAM, nVidia 2gb video, FHD 15.6" screen, BD burner, and 750gb Hdd. Bought new, it will turn 3 in September, and it still handles my work in LR5, ps5, onOne PPS 8, ms  Office, and so on with mostly no trouble.  I am considering doubling the ram, but that's it. Looking at what's available now I think I should be okay til next year anyway.....

EOS Bodies / Re: Any rumors on a new fullframe body for Canon?
« on: August 11, 2014, 02:15:09 PM »
7D has MANY more focus points, and way faster fps than 6D.  IQ-wise, my 6D wipes the floor with my 7D without breaking even the slightest sweat.  I've become so spoiled by 6D IQ that I find myself instinctively trying to capture moving subjects - birds, mostly, that I'll NEVER be good enough to capture with it, than just grab my 7D: despite its still-great specs and features it has become just a second body, emergencies only, for me.  Unless all you shoot are fast-moving subjects, you will find yourself pretty pleased with the 6D - and still have some cash left for another lens or flash or plane ticket...

EOS Bodies / Re: A Bit of EOS 7D Replacement Info [CR2]
« on: August 11, 2014, 02:07:06 PM »
I use eos remote on galaxy note 3 to shoot landscapes, fireworks, family portraits, and difficult-angle shots with my 6d. It drops the connection sometimes, but it usually picks right back up also.  I have yet to have one bit of camera equipment, computer, software, phone - any bit of tech that does everything it's supposed to do all the time or is otherwise flawless.  While I find the 6d wifi and canon software adequate for my needs, I would still buy a 7d II, depending on the price, whether it has wifi or not - I'd just rather it did...

Software & Accessories / Re: Adobe Creative Cloud 2014 - Jumped yet?
« on: August 06, 2014, 03:01:07 AM »
I'm a no. I use LR5 almost daily, and ps5 only occasionally. I also use onOne Perfect Photo Suite; and it seems to surpass cs5 for my purposes much of the time.  It offers layers, masking, re-sizing, and so on and I suspect I might use it more often once I become more comfortable with it, but truth be told I find most of the editing I need to do is possible within LR5.  I've used LR since it was introduced and have come to appreciate it more and more with each new version.  I've owned ps 2, 3, and, currently 5.  Layers are what I most find myself using in ps; which is now available in the aforementioned onOne software. I did consider abandoning my reservations and giving cc a try, but the idea that I would no longer be able to use a software once I stopped "renting" it is still a big hurdle for me.  As I said, I am still using ps-cs5.  I import ALL images through LR, and if I decide to use ps to work on an image I can export it as a tiff or psd for use in ps.

The smaller button operates my af using a Samsung galaxy note 3, a kindle fire hdx, fire hd, Asus transformer tf 101, Motorola droid 4...

Photography Technique / Re: Help: lightning photography?
« on: July 18, 2014, 02:35:55 PM »
How do you like the tamron 150-600? I've owned a sigma 150-500 for a couple of years now, but am fiending over the additional 100mm the tammy offers...

Format your drive as ex-fat; this is what we teach our students in Lightroom lab and they move their usb drive catalogs from their home macs to the lab's pc workstations with nary a problem.  Some random websites with ex-fat info:




Superb. Beautiful. Fantastic. Wonderful. Welcome...

Lenses / Re: Hawaii travel advice
« on: June 28, 2014, 03:58:12 PM »
Oh, and -

Lenses / Re: Hawaii travel advice
« on: June 28, 2014, 03:55:19 PM »
Another thought:
Take extension tubes for macro ( I use generic tubes I bought from adorama), and a tc ( I use a kenko 1.4) or two.  The 24-70 should be able to handle a canon 2x nicely - which, once again, you can rent the most recent iteration of from the camera rental store I mentioned in my earlier post.  I'm not shilling for them, per se; I've used Lens Rentals quite a bit also for stuff I'm going to use around home base, but Hawaii Camera being local alleviates travel weight concerns and their prices are good.  With the extension tubes and tc's you're covered macro to tele with just one or two lenses at most.  I only use my-tele-zooms for birds and such; they seem even more skittish on the islands than in Chicagoland.  The rest of the time my 24-105 is what is most needed: it's hard to not find "scenic points" and "photo ops" anywhere I've been on the islands, and being able to provide some context is invaluable.  They are a photographic paradise...

Lenses / Re: Hawaii travel advice
« on: June 28, 2014, 11:50:33 AM »
I've been to at least Oahu every year for the last 10 and I use my 24-105 mostly, along with a tokina 16-28, sigma 150-500, and 70-200 f/2.8L IS I, cp and nd filters; but then that's how I roll. I would take the 24-70, maybe the 17-40 and a tripod.  Once there, If I discovered any other needs I would go to these guys on Oahu:
Hawaii Camera Rental always has anything I need - I tried out several lenses by renting from them before buying them. The staff is knowledgeable, friendly, and accommodating.  They can give you great location advice, too...


Honey, Sorry, I try to shoot the beautiful  blue bird with my dear 1DX and 600 mm Lens, During Shooting, The Crow / Big Black bird start to get jealous, and start to attach me---Yes my  hand just accidentally  push the Old equipment and fall to the concrete drive way---


...So how come it's gotta' be a big BLACK bird?!?!! ;D :D ;) :)

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