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Messages - BL

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EOS-M / EOS M Grip with integrated Arca Swiss plate review
« on: April 11, 2014, 03:10:56 PM »
Came across a grip on eBay that looked promising that I thought I'd share with you guys.  Been using it for several weeks and I really like it!

NOTE: I do not make these, and do not profit in any way from sales. 

It's made entirely out of metal, and feels great holding anything from the pancake to larger EF lenses with adapter.  What I like most is that it can still mount on any Arca Swiss compatible head without blocking the battery/SD door, does not block the strap lug, and it doesn't increase the overall size.  This combo still fits in my tiny Lowepro Dashpoint 20!

It's important to note however, is that the dovetail will block the EF adapter's tripod foot.  I don't use it, so it didn't affect me, but those that do might find this to be a deal breaker.  The other possible negative thing about the all metal construction is that it can be very cold to the touch outdoors.  I wish the grip itself was covered in plastic for this reason.  But overall, very pleased with this grip.  Here's a breakdown of pros/cons

+ Vastly improves ergonomics and balance
+ Arca Swiss compatible
+ Does not block battery door
+ Made entirely of metal (Aluminum?)
+ Relatively inexpensive (paid $45 shipped from China on eBay)
+ Does not increase overall size (still fits in Dashpoint 20)
+ Has a threaded tripod socket underneath
+ Anti-rotation lip

- Arca Swiss dovetail blocks the EF adapter's tripod socket
- All metal construction makes it cold when using in colder weather
- Metal construction means a heavier camera
- Blocks Canon logo, which is kinda ugly IMO

If you're interested in one yourself, try the link below:

Lenses / Re: Teleconverter advice
« on: April 11, 2014, 02:22:57 AM »
The main advantage for the mkIIIs is the improved AF with white super tele's.

Other than that, the optical improvement is not very noticeable.

I purchased both mkII and mkIII 1.4 extenders to do a test myself back when they were both available.

No regrets sticking with mkII and saving myself quite a bit of coin

Reviews / Re: Lomography's Petzval Lens - RLPhoto's First Impressions
« on: April 08, 2014, 12:18:43 PM »
Wow, what an interesting lens!  I'm actually quite bummed to have missed out on this, but it's nice to know it's available for pre-order now.

I was reading around for more reviews on this lens, and it would appear later lenses might have optimized optics and some of the mechanical workings of the lens (based on this user's review)


The lens tested initially, was a very early sample of the lens, with a two-digit serial number. Lomography invited us to test a later sample, as they are convinced it will perform better. The original Kickstater page does state that, 'The lens as well as its accompanying lens hood will also undergo small design changes,' so we will take a look at what has changed on this second sample provided.

The second sample supplied has a serial number of 4262 and the exterior is much the same as the original sample tested, except that the brass finish appears to have been polished to a shine. Focusing is much smoother, with enough resistance in the mechanism to prevent the lens elements from moving inside the barrel when the lens is tilted. The focus mechanism still has a very short throw though, so accurate focusing can still be quite tricky, although it is much easier than with the first sample tested.

Sharpness in the centre of the frame is much improved at every aperture compared to the first sample. In fact, sharpness in the centre is quite respectable, being good in the centre at f/2.2, very good at f/2.8 and excellent at f/4. Sharpness towards the edges of the frame is poor at fast apertures, but this is to be expected due to the effect this lens produces. To really see the effect, backgrounds with lots of regular detail are required, such as patterned wallpaper, or light shining through tree branches. Without this, images lack the swirly look the Petzval lens design is known for, which limits its overall usefulness.

Lighting / Re: Reasons to get a ST-E3-RT?
« on: April 08, 2014, 01:00:38 AM »
Without AF assist ST-e3 is useless for me. Don't see any reason to buy it.
I would only consider purchasing an ST-E3-RT if I could get it for a "steal."

At the time I felt the same way.  I "stole" mine for ~$150, and won't likely ever go back to 600s as master.

It's possible I don't push my AF hard enough.  I haven't needed AF assist as I don't have any problems locking focus in low to dim light.

Lighting / Re: Reasons to get a ST-E3-RT?
« on: April 07, 2014, 07:54:05 PM »
Must be a very dark studio... mood lighting for shoots?  ???

Yeah, when the panel is pointing somewhere else and not visible, it's really great to have speedlite control through the LCD.

EOS-M / Re: I fell in love with EOS-M again and again
« on: April 07, 2014, 07:48:58 PM »
Nice shots.  I have a love/hate relationship with the EOS-M.  It is great because it is small and convenient.  But, at times, the lag drives me crazy.  Here's what's good:

-Size (and not too conspicuous)
-Interchangeable lenses

And here's what's bad:
-Lag time
-No dedicated viewfinder

None of this is news to any of us.  I recently took the M with me on a quick trip to Boston.  By the end of the trip, I was thinking about selling it (seeing street photo ops that were gone by the time the shutter snapped and then the wait until the next phot could be obtained).  Then, reviewing the images, I remember why I got it in the first place because of the IQ even in the OOC jpegs.

So this camera is one to love but also to hate.  It fills a spot in my photo armamentarium, but is not the item I would use to shoot pics of fast moving kids, random people in action or anything moving.

That's what your 5D is for  ;D

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: 1DX battery drain ULTRA fast
« on: April 07, 2014, 03:40:43 PM »
Are you using original OEM Canon batteries or generic 3rd party?

Those are amazing images.  The PP is more noticeable than I would like at times, but shots like this... just make me smile.

Thanks Surapon!

Photography Technique / Re: ST-E3-RT + 2 600Ex-RT + 430EXII
« on: April 06, 2014, 03:02:29 PM »
Personally, having used third party triggers and the 600's, I'd save the $90 on the triggers and sell the 430, then put the money towards a third 600.


That was my approach after trying a few work-arounds. The radio control of the ST-E3-RT and 600EX-RT works so well it's annoying to dumb things down to handle legacy equipment. All we need is for Canon to sub-license the spec or third parties to "adopt" it, so high end lighting (Einsteins, etc) can be used with the system.

That will never happen I'm afraid.  Canon wants our monies! :(

Lighting / Re: Basic home studio setup question
« on: April 05, 2014, 02:15:25 PM »

Have you checked out David Hobby?  He's got all sorts of info on this stuff.


EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Should I buy 6d or 5MkIII?
« on: April 05, 2014, 02:07:57 PM »
get the 6D and use the savings to buy a nice tilt shift

I don't use DxO, but everything orients properly on CS6 (standalone) on my PC.  Hope you figure it out soon, that problem sounds really annoying!

I can recall the 1Ds III coming to market at $7999  :o

Makes the MSRP of the 1Dx look fine in comparison  ::)

Lighting / Re: Reasons to get a ST-E3-RT?
« on: April 02, 2014, 03:17:22 AM »
If you are handholding, and don't need IR assist, ST-E3 for sure.  The 600 on top of the camera is awkward and not very balanced, especially in portrait orientation when handholding.

But if you need IR assist, or if you are primarily studio on a tripod, I don't see why you'd ever need an ST-E3 over a 600 imo.

That said, I'm like you and have 4x 600s, shooting mostly studio at the moment, but I still prefer the ST-E3 because the 600 sitting on top of my 1Dx with a 70-200 is just a handful.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: nice read on LL
« on: April 01, 2014, 10:08:48 PM »
Thanks for sharing Lightmaster!

Lord knows I really, really tried to read this, given how enamored I am with the humble M.

But this wall of text was nearly impossible to read.  Line breaks anyone?

I did scroll down far enough to see DxO sensor comparisons... *facepalm*

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