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Messages - mdmphoto

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I bought my 6d 24-105L kit from B&H for 2,329 last week, thank God!  With the "instant rebate", the price is actually higher, no?
I just checked B&H website and it's only 2199 now.  I gotta send it back and buy it again? #$**!!!

EOS Bodies / Re: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?
« on: April 14, 2013, 04:01:51 AM »
I just  bought a 6D after seeing the increased dynamic range and iso capabilities it offers over my 7D. Having said that I must say also that I love my 7D.  I've owned the original Rebel, xTi, 40-, and 50D bodies, and the 7D is a radical upgrade to the best of those bodies on their best days doing whatever shooting they did best.   I've owned this camera for some 3 years and it has been a fabulous tool for capturing the images I wanted, within its own limitation, which is its high-iso noise handling - for me, anything over 1600.  I generally expect to get good shots to that point.  I shot a Bulls game with a 70-200 f/2,8L IS at 2000 and the majority of the shots were very usable.  Up to 2500 is usually usable for me after some software tinkering. I haven't felt comfortable beyond that, though I have even seen other shooters get great results at higher iso settings.
The af is spot on and fast - and the 19 selectable af points  are something I miss on the 6D. I have rarely missed a shot using af.  Until last week my kit consisted of a 50- and 7D bodies, but I will now sell the 50D, grip and all, and work with the 7- and 6D bodies.  I am still hoping for enough improvement in the 7D II to warrant purchasing it, but I am very happy with my current combination. The 6D will be my portrait, landscape and low-light tool, but the 7D out-runs it for sports and nature (wild animals), the frame rate and crop fov lends itself to that type of shooting.
As for what to do, that is not so easy to answer.  If you decide to buy the current 7D, I would buy it new. The price continues to stagger downward, and it will have a longer useful life if bought new. On the other hand, the 7D II is expected by the end of the year and should be as spectacular as the original when it was introduced.  I would guess that gps and wifi will be built-in like in the 6D - by the way, those two features are fabulous, even though they do eat battery power.  I would hope that the iso noise would be greatly improved with the new (?) sensor and mfg process.  These things layered on top of the current specs would make the II very compelling for me next Spring. If you expect to need the frame rate and fov, along with the superior af system the 7D stands out, and most likely the 7D II even moreso.  On the other hand, the 6D offers clear iq superiority, and its ff sensor will probably beat out the 7D II if it continues as a 1.6 crop. The much-maligned af in  the 6D requires a little more deliberation, but definitely produces; although tracking fast-moving targets may not be all that easy.  The thing is, if you decide to go crop, it probably makes more sense to wait for the new technology of the 7D II.

Software & Accessories / Re: What editing software do you use?
« on: April 13, 2013, 09:52:04 PM »
LR4: organization and global editing, PS CS5 for local editing, fine-tuning for printing, onOne PPS and Nik Complete for special effects, noise, and so on.  Depends on the image; mostly I can use just LR, but on other occasions while I always start off in LR I may use any or all of the other softwares to complete the job.

Software & Accessories / Re: What’s up with Lightroom Magazine?
« on: April 06, 2013, 02:54:48 AM »
Welcome to the "Apple rules everything" world. There are plenty of people in it. For the rest of us...well...we can complain and say we won't give them our money for it. About all we can do. Or just give in and buy one, which I won't do.

Apple seems to have quite the stranglehold on the sensibilities of "professional" photographers.  I am not aware of any function Apple does that pc can't - except Apple is more "Elegant" in doing so.  We have several macs in the lab at school and that has been my experience of their utility. I don't like the expense, I don't like the smug demeanor, and I have discovered that most of the pros around me seem to share my feeling, but also seem drawn to the elegance.
There's also Lighting or Light-it, an ipad-only magazine focused on lighting (!).  The content of these two publications seems of interest to me, but I have no tolerance for smug artificial exclusivity, nor for the obvious manipulation: "if you want the mag, you gotta go apple", or real pros use apple products.  I pass...

Canon General / Re: Best Lightroom 4 Book ?
« on: April 05, 2013, 11:15:08 PM »
I have Evening's The Lightroom 4 Book Complete Guide for Beginners, and Adobe's LR4 Classroom in a Book.  Evening is a bit more practical, Adobe sometimes almost mind-numbingly dense and repetitive, but it is also very informative.  While there are some practical demonstrations, i.e. "do this, then change that..." it is more heavy on theory.  Evening has plenty of theory, but also plenty of practical information and a companion website, and a somewhat more relaxed, conversational writing style- though Adobe's book isn't overly professorial or dry either.  I still use both these books as references, but I also find that youtube offers a comprehensive buffet of lectures,  lessons and tutorials for all manner of software including Lightroom. There are a great many come-ons for  various pay sites mixed into the tutorial search results, but plenty of good info also.  I am also a NAPP member and that gives access to plenty of lessons as well, online and in the monthly mag.  These lessons are a bit more direct about specific goals for the adjustments; i.e. " to darken the sky do this" and so on...
If I had to offer only one resource I would probably recommend Evening's book.  Otherwise, search youtube for Lightroom.

Canon General / Re: Ever borrow from CPS
« on: April 05, 2013, 10:39:28 PM »
I'm a gold member and  borrowed a 6d from them 2 wks ago and used it on a trip to DC.  I didn't have much say in the dates as I was told it was a popular loan, but serendipity intervened.  As a result of my experience with that loaner I bought a 6D that arrived today from B&H per the CR price watch page.  Excellent.
I didn't even think about insurance, honestly; though Canon lists msrp of 5000 for the body, 24-105L and included accessories.  I handled the loaner a little more attentively than my 7D - I was actually evaluating it for purchase, but I don't really bang around my equipment anyway.  I sent it back 2-day guaranteed (56.00) which still isn't as expensive as renting as I have in the past, and the equipment is in new-to-refurb condition; which is better for making a true evaluation of it.
I will definitely borrow from Canon again, but expect to limit myself to items I am either considering purchasing, or items I could never imagine affording, in which case I will have to revisit the insurance question...

Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: April 02, 2013, 02:09:53 AM »
3 more; all 6D, Sigma 150-500...

Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: April 02, 2013, 01:19:57 AM »
6D, Sigma 150-500 @ 500: 1/250 @ f/6.3

Lenses / Re: What is your favorite lens and why?
« on: March 31, 2013, 03:08:15 AM »
ef-s 17-55 f.2.8 IS is my walk-around lens on my 7D.  Great images; sharp, fast, quick-focusing lens, relatively solid physically.  Expensive: I shudder to think what an "L" version of this lens would cost, but we get what we pay for, mostly.
Otherwise, I would have to take the easy way out again and select the 70=-200 f/2.8 L IS (I) for iq, and zoom range.  Not so much for walking around with, but sharp, fast, quick focusing lens that gets along well with my kenko 1.4 tele.
I was favorably impressed by the 24-105L f/4.0 IS on my recent evaluation 6D as a full frame fave. The 6D's superior noise-handling ability easily offsets the lens' slower aperture.

Lenses / Re: EF or EF-S for 7D/70D
« on: March 21, 2013, 01:05:59 AM »
My ef-s 17-55 f/2.8 IS is on my 7D always as my walkaround lens.  The aperture is wide, the iq is fabulous, and while the lens is not weatherproof, it is pretty well-built and has taken quite a bit of banging around in my walking around.  It's not inexpensive; like several of my lenses, I got a deal on ebay, but it is worth it.  The only other lens made for crop-sensors I would seriously consider is the Tokina 11-16 f/2.8; but part of its allure beyond the wide, wide angle and great iq is that it can be used as a 16mm prime on FF.  I am not thus far convinced that I will ever not have a crop-sensor body once I move to FF.

Lenses / Re: Do I need the EF 85mm f/1.8 USM?
« on: March 21, 2013, 12:47:06 AM »
I have the 70-200 f/2.8L IS "I" and I love it. It is versatile, sharp, impresses civilians, and so on.  I also have the 85 1.8, which is rather discrete or even nondescript.  It takes great portrait shots, and because of the wider aperture, comes in quite handy indoors for available-light portraiture.  I owned the 85 before the 70-200, but I would buy one anyway just for that extra 1 1/3 stops that will help me get some shots that would be otherwise unavailable to me.  Fringing and other aberrations are easily fixed, usually automatically, in current versions of most modern editing software.

Lenses / Re: Best sports lenses for Canon 7D
« on: March 21, 2013, 12:26:37 AM »
I got a deal on ebay for a 70-200 f/2.8 IS "I" a couple of years ago and have never regretted my purchase.  I use it on my 7D with always good results- indoors and out- as long as my own mechanics are good.  For daylight outdoor sports the canon 70-300 IS (non-L) gives good results.  I also use the 17-55 f/2.8 IS- also an ebay deal, for wider shots.  Right now I covet the Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC, and the Tokina 11-16 f/2.8. BTW, I also use a kenko 1.4 extender when needed, with good results.

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon EOS-b Images Leak & a New Kit Lens
« on: March 19, 2013, 01:10:48 PM »
Count me amongst those confused by all the hate.

Sure, it's the same old sensor. But it's an SLR body that's probably as small as is physically possible with an EF-S mount. How is that not cool?
Really, sometimes I think the only thing that'll satisfy the peanut gallery 'round here is if the camera gets delivered by an invisible flying pink unicorn pony -- and one that grants sexual favors, to boot....

First quote: Exactly!  One thing I covet is a small body for walkaround shooting rather than lugging and banging, around my 50 or 7D.  If the image quality is there then this could be a fine instrument for spontaneous captures, street shooting and so on.

Second quote:  favors... sexual.... UNICORN PONY! Doh!

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon EOS-b Images Leak & a New Kit Lens
« on: March 19, 2013, 12:53:20 PM »

Well, keep in mind that lower-end cameras sell a lot more than higher-end cameras and that if you intend to get people to move up to higher-end cameras, it's a lot easier to convince them if they already have one of your cameras (brand loyalty).

This actually makes the most sense to me when I consider other canon customers and the whole business end of things in general.  I started with the original rebel, moved to XTi, 40D, 50D, 7D, and am awaiting my 6D evaluation loaner to help me decide - and convince the wife - to buy my first FF, while still looking forward to the 7DII!  Everyone starts somewhere and builds from there - or not.  I know many people that are quite happy with camera models, and brands(!) that do not meet my own wants/needs, and a quite many of them have lesser specs and price tags than those I favor.  Doesn't seem to bother them, they are happy and produce, yes, some beautiful work with these instruments.  The thing is, when I see new models appear I always anticipate that much of the nifty new features will find their way to my hoped-for models when they finally debut; a la wifi and gps in the 7DII's rumored specs.  In the meantime I have more time to work with my 7 - & 50D models, or quite possibly sell the 50D and buy the 6D in the interim while pining for the 7DII.  Choices for everyone.  New Beginnings as well...

Lightroom 4

Brilliant! I don't understand why most are trying to warm it up. It's unnatural.

Are we looking for mood, natural accuracy, or some combination thereof? 

"As you can see (above), snow leopards aren't the color of snow. They're colored like the rock habitat they live in"
Indeed, the source RAW file shows quite a bit of color that I daresay seems naturally accurate.  IMHO it is more challenging to excite the sensuous aesthetic via a favorable presentation of the real - and for me that much more satisfying on the rare occasion that I have accomplished same.  Please don't get me wrong; I am also wildly in favor of stylized interpretation, though I don't find it as challenging a concept.  All I'm saying is let's be clear on goals before we decide to critique each other's approach to the challenge.... ;D

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