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Messages - Beautor

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1
Lenses / Re: Gateway lens
« on: October 09, 2013, 10:02:36 AM »
Like Neuro I knew that the lens was more important than the body. We had tried several of the Canon and Sigma 70-300's but were never satisfied. I found a great deal on a used 70-200 F4L and we have never regretted that decision. Then we picked up a 1st generation 24-70 F2.8L on clearance just before the MKII was released for $400 off. Now I'm saving my pennies for the next one. It's a little too much like really expensive crack.

2
Software & Accessories / Re: Stop Using Instagram
« on: December 18, 2012, 10:04:07 AM »
Taking the copyrights to any images posted has been Facebook's policy for at least 4 years now, and when they bought Instagram they obviously implemented the policy there too. One more reason why I hate Facebook and refuse to post any images on one of their services.

Flickr does not assume any rights to your images. They were quite explicit on that when I signed up for my Flickr account. I'm pretty sure that Google's products do not assume any rights to your images either, but I don't use them so I'm not certain.

3
Canon General / Re: Camera advice requested for parents in Africa
« on: December 13, 2012, 05:01:34 PM »
Ditto.  The other thing to consider here is the reason they need it... the last camera got stolen.  Any DSLR no matter how old (to us) will attract more theft attention than a decent P&S.  Plus, as neuro mentioned, there's the dust issue.  So the SX500 is likely the best option for a variety of reasons.

The possibility of a DSLR attracting unwanted attention was actually my first question to my dad. The main reason a DSLR is on the table is because it's what he originally asked for. I think he was a bit frustrated with his crappy point-and-shoot camera, and knowing the kind of pictures my wife and I get with our DSLRs, he wanted something with a lot more reach, but decent quality. My preference for them would be a decent PS with good reach and decent quality like the SX500 suggested here.

Thanks for your feedback everyone!

4
6D Sample Images / Re: Anything shot with a 6D
« on: December 13, 2012, 02:18:52 PM »
Thanks for posting pictures. I'm seriously considering a 6D as an upgrade from my 40D, and to compliment my 60D, and users actual experience and feedback really helps a lot.

5
EOS Bodies / Re: Are you really serious about 6D?
« on: December 13, 2012, 12:28:58 PM »
So now you have some thoughts from someone who actually owns this camera

And why would that matter?  (to a troll, that is  ::) )

Thanks for an informed opinion!

+1 on thanks for an informed opinion. My wife and I currently use a 60D and a 40D, and for us the 6D seems to be the most reasonable upgrade path. I have not used it yet (going to the camera shop today!) but as casual photographers the 6D seems a much more reasonable option than the 5Diii. If I had a wallet full of big bills I most definitely would go with a 5Diii, but since I don't the 6D looks like a great upgrade for the landscape and portrait type photography we do. The slightly smaller size is also appealing to my wife, who is 5'2" and has very small hands.

6
Canon General / Camera advice requested for parents in Africa
« on: December 13, 2012, 11:29:34 AM »
Here's the situation: My retired parents who are in Malawi, Africa doing humanitarian work were recently robbed and their point-&-shoot camera was among the things stolen. They have asked me to find a good camera for them to use when they take a little time off to visit some of the game preserves in the area. They do have a 2nd hand cheapo PS camera now for taking pictures of people, and things up close. My parents are not photographers, nor are they particularly tech savy. What they want is a camera with enough reach to take pictures of wildlife as they travel around the game preserve. My Dad estimates that what he is looking for is to be able to get a reasonably close picture of a kudu or a hippo from about 200' away. They are not especially wealthy so a setup like a 7D and 100-400L is unfortunately out of the question. They just want to be able to take good pictures of the amazing wildlife that they see when they go out driving.

After talking to them it looks like their budget is in the up-to $600-$700 price range. Currently I'm debating between a new good quality point & shoot like the Canon SX150 IS because it has a 12x zoom (28-336mm equivalent), it is compact, and is easy to use. This option is less expensive, but would hopefully give them much better reach than their 2nd hand PS that has a 3x zoom. Being a compact camera also makes it easier for them to carry with them without inviting undue attention from unsavory individuals.

The other option would be a Rebel with the 18-55mm & 55-250mm lenses. I think I can do the Rebel kit for around $600, or maybe even lower if I'm lucky shopping Kijiji for 2nd hand equipment(Craigslist isn't big in my area). This option provides slightly more reach, but is way bulkier. If they go with this option the camera would primarily stay in their appartment and only go out when they go sight-seeing because of the probability of being robbed again in the future. As for use, I highly doubt that the camera would leave the green mode, so the extra features of a DSLR are not especially needed.

What I'm asking is for feedback on the options I've come up with. I haven't used a PS style camera for quite a while so I'm not certain of the quality, and if it would be sufficient. Does anyone have any other recommendations in their price range?

7
EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: 60D rubber coming loose on grip
« on: September 10, 2012, 06:16:16 PM »
If you're still under warranty Canon will replace the grip for free. They did mine, and the turnaround was less than a week. I'm almost certain that the newer rubber grip is smaller and fits way better, and is a touch firmer, but still very grippy. The original rubber was very soft and squishy which I'm sure contributed to it coming loose.

Even if your camera isn't still under warranty I'd bet that the repair woudn't be very pricy through Canon.

If you decide to have a go at it yourself, I've seen repair kits on eBay to re-glue or replace the rubber grip. 

8
Personally, for someone on a budget I'd seriously recommend (or second alan_k's recommendation) that you consider the 17-50 f/2.8 non-VC for a basic/fast kit zoom lens. The Canon 17-55 F2.8 is a bit nicer lens with IS, but it costs at least 3 times as much. The images we get from our Tamron are much sharper than when we had the Canon 18-135, although you lose the long zoom end. For indoor shots the faster aperture of the Tamron made it MUCH more useable than the 18-135 or 18-200 without having to break out the flash for active kids. I got mine used for less than $300. For the difference I saved over the Canon 17-55 F2.8 I bought a Canon 70-200 F4L to cover the long end. The only thing I don't like about the Tamron lens is that the AF is a little noisy; but then when I'm comparing it to L series lenses its a little unfair.

I love prime lenses, and wish I had the money to get another one, but for a casual photographer looking to capture those unforgettable family moments, it's really hard to beat the versatility of a zoom lens.

9
Lenses / Re: Are you going to "upgrade" your 24-70 2.8 I
« on: May 29, 2012, 03:03:27 PM »
Personally I'm not in the market for the vII. The Upgraded price puts it way out of our league at the moment. I bought my wife a 24-70 vI in January at the end of the rebates for just under $1200. Its our 2nd "L" lens after our 70-200 F4L. The 24-70 was a huge step up from all our previous lenses, but it also was a significant chunk of change for a pair of casual photographers. If I could ever convince my wife to continue with portrait photography (and earn a little income with it) we might have the money to invest in more/better lenses, but for the moment the original 24-70 works fantastic for us.

Personally I'm certain that I would be a fast prime addict if I could afford anything more than my 50 F1.8. I love low light and shallow DOF, but that little plastic 50 just looks so funny on my old 40D.

10
Canon General / Canon Warranty Service Experience = A+++
« on: April 12, 2012, 04:45:46 PM »
I just wanted to share our experience with sending a camera body in for service. I've always heard that Canon's customer and warranty service is excellent, which is one of the reasons my wife and I are Canon users, but we've never had to use our warranty until just recently.

About 6 months ago I bought my wife a 60D to replace her T1i. Shortly after buying it we noticed that the rubber grip was loose in spots, and was peeling slightly. At first it wasn't enough to convince my wife to send it in, but a few weeks ago it started getting worse, to the point where it affected how you had to hold the camera. She went to the camera store where we purchased the camera, and they told her they would ship it out free of charge for service for her, and that it would take 3-4 weeks. She decided to check with sending it to Canon directly, and they estimated 10-14 days, depending on the type of service needed. My wife decided that sending it to Canon directly was the better option because she couldn't handle being without her baby for as long as the camera store was estimating.

She got a return authorization from Canon service and shipped it on the 3rd of April, and we received it back on the 9th of April. 6 days round trip, including 2 holidays! We have to say that we were ecstatic with the service. They sent us notifications when it was received, completed and shipped with a tracking number. The new grip on the camera is perfect, and way better than it was originally out of the box.

Now sending it in through the camera store could potentially have been this fast too, but having worked in retail, I know that often stores will stockpile warranty items and bulk ship them once a week or so. I don't know how this store handles it so we decided to not risk it, and take care of it ourselves. I must say it was a very positive experience.

11
Landscape / Re: Post your best HDR Photographs
« on: March 27, 2012, 02:12:01 PM »
I'm very new to HDR and am just experimenting a bit, but here's one I just tried.


Waterfall_Driftwood_HDR2.jpg by Prete Photography, on Flickr

12
Animal Kingdom / Re: Killdeer
« on: March 23, 2012, 01:23:36 PM »
Nice pictures. They bring back memories of Killdeer around where I grew up. They would pretend to be injured and try to lead us away from their nest. They often nested in rocky areas around the lake where we would go fishing.

They always do their pretend hurt wing trick when I happen to walk by.  Taking photos from the car did not bother them.
 
These were taken far away and severely cropped.
 

 
 


That's exactly what I was talking about, with the wing held at an awkward angle, and run a short distance away then stop to see if you'll follow. Very nice.

13
Animal Kingdom / Re: Killdeer
« on: March 20, 2012, 10:43:50 AM »
Nice pictures. They bring back memories of Killdeer around where I grew up. They would pretend to be injured and try to lead us away from their nest. They often nested in rocky areas around the lake where we would go fishing.

14
Lenses / Re: Canon 50mm 1.4 AF problem?
« on: March 20, 2012, 10:25:07 AM »
^ the sigma 50mm has AF? Really? I thought it was excusively MF.

...

Can you please elaborate a little more on why you didnt buy the sigma 50mm. That you didnt want to get burnt by the "sigma lottery." What's that mean exactly? The current sigma 50mm lens wont work on future canon dflr's?

The Sigma 50mm F1.4 EX DG HSM (current EF model) does have autofocus with HSM (Sigma's version of USM), but that's where the lottery is primarily too. Sigma has some quality control issues where some lenses will nail the focus great, and others consistantly front or back focus. The lens is very sharp if you get a good copy, and can be extremely frustrating if you get a bad one. There's also often problems where the lens will work fine on one camera body, and then be way off on another body. It can be a great lens though, especially if you prefer manual focus since it eliminates the inconsistant AF.

15
Lenses / Re: Stacking TC - samples
« on: March 20, 2012, 09:52:15 AM »
Thanks for posting your test and results. Its not what I would have expected.

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