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Messages - jonathan7007

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61
Lighting / Re: Why was Godox first to think of this?
« on: October 19, 2013, 08:56:55 PM »
I use 580 and 550EX units with both a Godox belt pack and a Yongnuo knock-off 8-AA-tray. I like the choice to go with the compact form or the extra pack, based on the needs of the shoot. Of course I use rechargeables in the Yongnuo's tray, and that means taking care to do the charging in advance. The Godox pack holds a charge well and charges quickly. Like those that have commented, this isn't a big breakthrough but would be a consideration if someone had not already bought a kit for events.

I admit I didn't go to the product info site... reacting to these posts.

I like the Godox pack.

jonathan7007

62
Software & Accessories / Re: DSLRs Remote for Android Smartphones
« on: September 18, 2013, 05:32:30 AM »
I use dSLRController as does the other poster. But I write to add that YouTube was -- at least a while back -- full of examples of people using this app one their Android phones for camera control. There is also a long thread on XDA Developers Android forum which is dedicated to questions to the developer (he answers the posts every few days) and details about making it work when it is not just easy out of the box.

I like your idea of the unit as a backup to wired shutter release. I think my DroidX is a little too far back in its OS to run the dSLRController software (on "Gingerbread" Android.). Which Samsung phone are you trying to implement?

But I have ordered a Samsung Note3 and anticipate running the camera on that sometimes. The programmer's site lists compatible phones. I hope the Note3 is on it! (Yeah, I should have looked first...)

I tether to either a Win7 laptop or my Android Transformer TF101 tablet.

Please keep us up to date on how you do this.


63
Lighting / Re: Phottix Odins, monolights, and HSS
« on: September 16, 2013, 07:06:33 PM »
V8, great to see you back!

I bought 4 Einstein heads and a single Vagabond, have shot one or two assignments that called for outdoor power. Looking for similar car challenges way out here on my Pacific rock -- just for fun... owners of great iron here have few commercial aspirations that require spending $$ for a car picture but it looks like so much FUN!

Einsteins put out a LOT of light. Having Balcar attachment standard opens some options past the Buff modifiers, but the Buff materials seem good. Your point about the second or third Vagabond sounds smart and might keep wires out of sight in a more complicated setups.

64
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: New iPhone: Final Nail in the Coffin
« on: September 16, 2013, 07:02:23 PM »
Forgive me if someone already kvetched on this point four pages ago...

At least a few more potential real estate clients will try to go it alone with each improvement" in always-with-me cameras. I console myself (and adjust my sales message) with the realization that they were not good client match in that case.

I have to aim at the need/client which has to be illustrated/served by skills that aren't coming from the camera itself.

So, not the *final* nail in the coffin.

65
Hey, thanks for opening up your project to show its guts... Cool mod. It would be a new level of McGyver-type project for me, but the end result is really appealing. Might try it on my 550EX first, as they are easier (cheaper) to replace.  I have to balance this work against the cost of the FlashZebra alternative. (I also have a blunderbuss soldering iron $0.50 from a garage sale so might have to up that toolset a bit <grin>.)

I am still scratching my head on the "why" and that I can't reproduce it.

Thanks, again.

66
Lighting / Re: 3rd Party Flashes vs. Canon's...
« on: August 19, 2013, 08:47:54 PM »
Canon 550EX units are pretty cheap and offer as much light as the 580EX and 580EX2. You get compatibility and the Master-Slave options as structured by Canon. I usually work in manual, but use ETTL at events/parties. Just a datapoint to consider. eBay sourced, obviously.

67
Good question and detail missing in my write-up. Thanks!

I set that 580EX for manual, dialing it down to barely show. I never use ETTL when placing speedlights in set scenes. So no preflash. Perhaps, since I could not reproduce the problem (although it happened twice ) it is a different unit from my four Einstein heads and isn't reproduced because that's not the head I tested with last night.

I'm attaching the shot, and it was one of the two on which I saw the behavior.


68
Neuro, looked again at my Zebra and the base is green, innards orange, so "green" is the FlashZebra unit that I have....knew I had to specify.

I understand the usual use of an Odin receiver. I just wanted whatever triggering I had in my kit. I had bought a FlashZebra "Canon Hotshoe" a couple of months ago to provide this function but loaned it to my daughter on the mainland for a wedding she was shooting. As I said, in these assignments I just need triggering as I use the speedlights as small size manual-setting output heads to mix with the Einsteins, so yeah, I could have gone back to the place we stashed all the cases, dug around for the Odin sender unit, loaded it with batteries.... you see what I mean. Everything has to move quickly because there's always more to shoot than fits into anything like a typical work day, so I avoid changing the set up after I get going to one approach. Many of you here will know what I mean.

The Einstein was next to me so I put the (hardwire) PC cord in the side of the body.

risc32, I'd love to know more about jamming a 1/8-inch fitting into a 580 or 550. I have one of each (not EXvII) and have been thinking of getting another 550 to replace one more Vivitar. The 550 puts out almost every bit as much light as the 580EX. ...and they're cheaper. That gives me the Canon IR solution of master/slave to fall back on. If I find the link I will post it back in here.

As I also said, I couldn't reproduce the problem.

69
All,
Please read this account of a minor odd moment in strobe lighting and tell me if you know what went wrong.

I was photographing interiors and my kit includes both Einsteins and speedlights, Canon and Vivitars. In a small bathroom I planned to shoot from the door and snuck an Einstein head up next to me such that the head pointed straight up at the ceiling over my head. Satin 7.5 inch reflector. Dialed down to something like 100, 200WS, because it was a small bathroom and light in overall color (white ceiling). Attached directly to the 1DsMk3 by its own Buff-supplied PC cord. 17TSE on the body.

This body had been used on other rooms with just Einsteins (multiple heads) all good so far.

I had placed a Canon 580EX in the bathtub to brighten up the shower curtain and the matte-finished tile. It was mounted on a small stand up on top of a Phottix  Odin  receiver into which I had plugged a FlashZebra orange optical slave made for Canon triggering (FlashZebra has different models.) Odin "on" and set for Group A, Channel One. The speedlite was behind the white translucent cloth curtain pointed away from the lens. The Odin was underneath it and the slave stuck out the "back" of the Odin toward the camera position and therefore toward the strong pulse from the Einstein.

What went "wrong"? This: On first curtain setting only the Canon's light showed up in the exposure. Everything fired, though, and apparently at the same time. Tried it about five times.  Get this - I was dragging the shutter to let a ceiling light show in the image, so I wasn't anywhere near 250th. No banding showing on the screen. Change to second curtain and it works fine.

The same combination did it in another room a bit later. Again, second-curtain "fixed" the problem.

Nothing strange about those second-curtain images in post.

Tonight I pulled what may or may not be the same Einstein head and tested the setup. I should have marked the head! Works fine on both first- and second-curtain.  WTF? Presumably the Canon is going off milliseconds after the Einstein, as it's the Canon speedlite on a slave.

OK, anyone, any ideas?

(As an aside: One of the things that bothers me about my 580 and 550 is their lack of a PC connector, because when not at an event I think of them as small manual strobes to be hidden here or there or lighting a corner that just fades due to required placement of the bigger units. Before the purchase of the Einsteins this motley crew of Canon and Vivitar units was my only kit for interiors.  In most cases optical slaves are fine for that kind of work. The Vivitars have a connector, albeit a proprietary one.)

jonathan7007

70
Lighting / Re: Light Meter Help
« on: August 08, 2013, 04:06:18 AM »
I needed a strobe meter and bid on several Sekonic L558 on eBay until one stayed at or below a figure I had chosen, about $180-200. I discovered that I liked having the ambient capabilities, too, although I like so many use a meter so much less now than film days.

If you do need flash metering, especially metering that report the mix of flash and ambient (even through the spot meter field of view) then pick your budget and bid on all the good L558 eBay units until one stays in your range. The 758 seems like more than we need these days (unless really careful in the studio product work?) I don't know much about the Sekonic L3xx units.

I love having this even if only using it in the most difficult setups.

71
Software & Accessories / Re: YEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAA!
« on: July 15, 2013, 03:52:05 AM »
Here's another possible use: turn a tablet toward the model and give them the feedback on what you see. In some shoots this will help. I looked unsuccessfully for a tripod leg mount for my 10" ASUS but didn't push all the way through to find a possibility for this larger size tablet.

Tether Tools is iPad only, but they offer such a thing.

72
Software & Accessories / Re: YEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAA!
« on: July 15, 2013, 03:23:45 AM »
I have used the Android app "dSLR Controller" on my ASUS Transformer 101, so know that part of your set up. When the full tether benefits aren't needed it is a good solution. $8.00 when I bought it.  I am stills only so don't worry about the issue you mention on video feed. But the viewing is great and it's easy to bracket. Think copy job, on a tripod, small products.

The ASUS makes it possible to attach a USB to either their dock/keyboard (no adapter needed) or to the tablet alone (adapter needed from ASUS for my model). Can't have it in one hour and it's more $ but the usefulness of the tablet made me willing to buy the adapter. I also use the tablet to sell my services. I never went with the iPad so didn't see that as a lost $$.

I will look closely at your mount. These days I have fewer clients showing up for shoots but I would like it to be easier for them when they do. I spent some time looking for a practical wiFi solution to use with the ASUS while tethered to a windows laptop for the actual shooting, but I could not find a mirroring app that I thought I could make work. EyeFi not really a solution as best I can tell. Too slow, people say. I am open to looking again at that... shooting with 5DMk3 and 1DsMk3 bodies.

73
Software & Accessories / Re: Looking for Product photography tripod
« on: July 15, 2013, 03:09:17 AM »
I miss my studio... except for the rent.

74
Lighting / Re: Softbox Size question
« on: July 12, 2013, 05:43:21 PM »
Jon,
Are these Octa units able to use a grid/limiter? I would not want at least some softboxes in my kit that didn't have some way of controlling how wide their light is cast. I have no experience with an octabox but saw one a friend had in use and it would have been hard to card it off and I saw no attachment for a honeycomb. Rectangular units of any size mean easy scrim with a black card. I have cut sawtooth cards to taper the effect. Rectangular softboxes, if not too deep, are a bit easier to hide in the corner of a room, but I haven't looked at an Octa up close.

Think long term and wait for what will work. Or order from another source. Post a "Want to Buy" ad.

jonathan7007

75
Software & Accessories / Re: Looking for Product photography tripod
« on: July 07, 2013, 03:13:18 PM »
Amazon's search sort of woke up. This is the column stand I used:
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001E9660E   ...it was wonderful and was a productivity booster

Yes, did need 4x5 then -- looking at it through the lens of day-to-day experience I realize that a lighter version would be OK for today's work! (MF or 1DsMk3, the Nikon?) Note the flexibility of movement (arm goes back and forth with wheel handle) and the height flexibility. Bring your own head.

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