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Topics - clicstudio

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Lenses / Polarizing Filter to reduce light advice.
« on: May 22, 2014, 12:24:13 PM »
Hi I shoot outside a lot, and since my Einstein Flashes can't sync over 1/320, I usually take my Canon 600EX Flash with me.
Unfortunately, even with the built in diffuser, the shadows are harsh. And with a Gary Fong Diffuser, which softens the shadows a lot, the flash loses output so it has to be set at a stronger level, therefore taking longer to recycle.
Another reason I like the on board flash is the High-speed sync, so I can shoot at F2.8 and not worry about shutter speed.
I want to know if there is a filter that will help me keep sync speeds under 1/320 and still shoot at F2.8 on bright sun light.
Basically, sunglasses for my Canon 24-70 II :)
Thanx for your help.


EOS Bodies - For Stills / 1D X White Balance Bug NOW WITH SAMPLES...
« on: June 06, 2013, 04:58:22 PM »
I have a problem with white balance shifting on random images on my 1D X.
White balance is set to Flash, Manual Exposure and Aperture and ISO. NOTHING AUTOMATIC except for AF.
Out of 307 photos I took yesterday, about 8 or 9 have a "colder" white balance. Basically they look less "warm".
I shoot models so I can tell right away because of the skin tones and the over all scene changing.
At first I thought it was a color problem with my Einstein Flashes not keeping up while shooting rapidly (The camera is on Low Speed at 3fps anyway and at about 10% of power, so recycling shouldn't be a problem) but I notice this also happens when using available light.
This happens every day on random images and I am concerned at the moment thinking I might have a faulty sensor or light meter...
I have the latest firmware and use a Canon 24-70 F2.8L II...
Anyone has the same issue? Please let me know.
I am a CPS Gold Member and could send the camera to Canon for a checkup...


Lenses / 24-70 vs 24-70 II Outdoors Test! WHOOAAA!!!b
« on: September 15, 2012, 08:18:41 PM »
Since people asked... Here are some outdoors comparisons...
First thing I must say is the new lens is exactly 10% brighter. For this comparison, I adjusted ONLY the brightness and made them both as close as I could.
At first glance, they look almost the same. There are 3 crops. Center, Left and Right.
Not only the old lens gets blurry on the edges, but also the horizon line drops significantly! I drew a red horizon line on all crops to illustrate the effect... The new lens has an almost perfect horizon line all the way thru... Amazing!
Sharpness is just awesome. The buildings on the center are probably 3 miles away and the 2 towers on the right hand side are over 6 miles away... Still there is enough detail in them and this is just a 70mm lens.
Check out the Subway billboard on the right... Unbelievable!
I am not a landscape photographer but I used the lens for the first time to shoot a model. In another forum topic I complained about how many out of focus or soft images I was getting out of my 1D X. I was disappointed and frustrated. I must say that I didn't miss any today. ALL images are super sharp and the focus is spot on! I am happy again! The old 24-70 will be on ebay tomorrow!  :P

Here are the links to the comparisons... Just rollover the image to switch and prepare to be amazed!
If you are an outdoors photographer, the perfect horizon line and the sharp edges should be a life changing experience  ;)

One more Thing. Since the lens is brighter, it seems more light goes into th sensor, it is even better for low
Light situations. I would guess it's
Like 2 stops brighter. At the studio,  When i used to need ISO 640, today I used ISO 400! Same
Lighting setup! Awesome!

Hope u enjoy!






Lenses / 24-70 vs 24-70 II
« on: September 15, 2012, 11:57:46 AM »
Just got my new 24-70 F2.8L II today!
I ran some simple focus test for fun.
I took a photo of my studio with available light. Handheld 1/160 F2.8 ISO 800.
Single focus point on the red lamp in the center of the frame.
The out of focus "things" on the image are an Ikea lamp in front of me. I did other test shots for sharpness and bokeh.
The bokeh is just a little smoother on the new lens but almost identical... You can see the lamp on the last attachment.
First thing you notice is how much brighter the new lens is. Look at the tufted white pattern on the right.
Then at 100% you really see the difference. Notice how much sharper everything is.
At first I thought I could add some edge sharpening to try to match, and it does get better but adding sharpening also adds noise and artifacts. So a subtle sharpening is fine but it won't match the quality of the new lens.
Color seems similar although I noticed a lot less Chromatic Aberration on the new lens.
I will do more tests when I can. This is a simple, good start, I think.  ;D

I've been using the 1D X for a month and a half now...
For 9 years, I used 1D series cameras. My last was 1D IV.
I already put out about 15K photos on it. Yes, I work a lot...
Anyway. I am actually worried about the focusing on the camera. I would say that in 20% of the photos, the camera fails to focus or it is soft. I only have one lens, a 24-70 F2.8L I've been using for 6 years. I never shoot in AI Servo mode. Always in One Shot and I haven't changed the way I work. I move around a lot and manually change the focus points with the joystick, on the fly. I can't seem to find a reliable focusing method. I tried all of the new focusing modes. Zone Focusing, cross type, individual, etc... I am NOT getting the same accuracy I was getting on the 1D IV.
Even at F8.0, the focus is sharp on the focusing point but the rest of the image is blurry. Again, I am using the very same lens. Unfortunately I sold my 1D IV so I can't compare them side by side, but I am not used to having these issues and getting too many useless images...
I hope it is not a Full Frame issue. The cropped sensor, being smaller, might be sharper all around. I don't know. I am also seeing more distortion, vignetting and blur on the edges. Something i never got on a 1.3 crop sensor...
I though it might be an issue with the "old" lens not being able to keep up with the new 1DX focusing speed.
10 year-old technology...
Please share your thoughts and experiences. I would like to know which focusing mode you find faster and more accurate.
I am getting the 24-70 F2.8L II tomorrow from Adorama. I will test it out. Hopefully, the camera and the lens will really work well together.


Software & Accessories / Imagenomic Noiseware 5/Portraiture 2.3
« on: August 09, 2012, 11:55:11 AM »
Just released... http://www.imagenomic.com/nw.aspx?f=features
It works amazingly fast and with awesome results. It takes barely a second to preview the changes and they work in Real time on Photoshop CS6.
I own 3 other noise reduction plug ins but this is by far the fastest and best.
Noise levels might be lower than they were a year ago but noise still exists...
I tested ISO 16000 and 25600 from a 1DX and 5D III and this software creates a smooth and sharp final image in seconds.
I noticed the noise itself is different than previous cameras. It is more dense and the dots are smaller.
The algorithms on most of the older noise reduction software is mean for the "old" noise. New cameras have a different kind of noise that some of this software can't seem to fix...
Noiseware is brand new, 64-bit and works with multi processor support.
I have a super fast 12-Core 2.93Ghz Mac Pro with 32GB of RAM and a hauling 1TB OWC Accelsior PCIe SSD Hard Drive that gives me data read speeds of 800MB/second so speed is not really an issue for me, but this plug in gives you the fastest possible results, no matter the machine.
Try it for 15 days.
Also check out the Portraiture plug-in (Skin smoothing). I have been using it for years now and I couldn't live without it...

PowerShot / SX260 HS. Very Happy!
« on: August 05, 2012, 11:53:50 AM »
I love going to concerts. Sometimes I get good seats but when I don't I need a good zoom.
Just bought the SX260. I took my nieces to the Miami zoo and I must say I was very impressed with the 20x optical zoom and quality of the 12MP photos.
I used the camera in full Manual mode which is great for a pocket camera.
One big time flaw I found is the electronic pop up flash. It's positioned on the
Left top, exactly where your left finger rests
To hold the camera... If the flash needs to pop up and your finger is covering it, the mechanism will get stuck and give you and error saying the position of the flash is wrong and to restart the camera to reset it.
I can believe Canon could have such a design flaw...
Otherwise, the camera is fast, the focus is spot on and the quality is great for a $299 camera.

The AF point selection modes are independent according to the orientation of th
The modes are "remembered" by the camera as is the AF point selection.
I like it. It gives me more flexibility... ;D

EOS Bodies - For Stills / 1D X NOT compatible with Pocket Wizard!
« on: July 21, 2012, 10:07:08 AM »
Hey, as I found out a few Months back, there is still a problem with Pocket Wizards and the 5D III. I just got
My 1D X and the problem with it is worse. Even at 1/125 there is a black bar on the frame. I downloaded the latest beta for my TT-1 and it still doesn't sync my Einstein flashes
With pocket wizard PowerMC 2's.
According to PW's website, this beta release is still NOT compatible with 5D or 1DX. They claim they are working on it... Basically I have a new
Camera Which I can't use at the studio!
The system is great though with a 1D IV. I also have a PW AC-3. which lets me control power output for 3 flashes in real time from the camera.
I am really disappointed and rathet irate that they haven't fixed the problem.
I really thought the problem was the sync limitation of the 5D but it is worse
On th 1D.

EOS Bodies / 840 1DX Coming to B&H!!
« on: July 10, 2012, 11:07:05 AM »
I live in Miami, but Since I am in NYC I had to stop by B&H. I preordered the 1DX 3 months ago and still haven't gotten it.
I asked the manager about my order and he showed me the computer and I saw for myself, 840 cameras on order and 680 on Back Order... That means more cameras than back orders so I will definitely get one and if you placed a pre order and still gotten yours, you are surely getting one soon!

They didn't even have a sample camera to show. I got lucky and the manager told me to wait and 10 minutes later he came back with a brand new unopened camera and let me open it and play with it for a while. Not even the employees at the store had even seen one. I was the first to play with it. It feels incredible in your hand. The viewfinder is huge and the screen is amazing. I asked the salesman for a 24-70 2.8 and then a 70-200 2.8L II... Wow. The store has very bad light,  and at 4000 ISO there is no visible noise. Even at 8000 ISO I was able to go to 1/1000 at F4.0... WOW!

Bad for me, he couldn't sell it to me. He said the camera was Canon's property and it can't be sold. I will have to wait for my order to arrive in the mail :( at least I was able to unbox it myself and use it for a while and I believe it's the best camera ever! I can't wait!!!

EOS Bodies / 1D Mark IV for Sale... How much?
« on: July 03, 2012, 01:46:11 PM »
As soon as I get my 1D X, hopefully this week,  I will sell my 2.5 year old 1D Mark IV.
ebay's commissions have gone to the roof... 9% off the total value plus 3% for PayPal... Crazy...

I will send it to Canon for a thorough cleaning and they can tell me how many actuations the camera has.
Truthfully, I think it might be close to 250,000 photos...
I think I can get close to $3500 for it... What do u think is fair if it doesn't have that many photos?

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Ergonomics... Why you pay more for a 1D...
« on: June 08, 2012, 10:49:06 AM »
My very first Canon was a 10D with a grip in 2002... But I've been using exclusively 1D's since 2003.
And I couldn't go back to anything less...
My friend has a 5D. I love the quality but found the camera to be too small without a grip. He just received the BG-11E grip. After playing with it for a while I found the position of the buttons to be too uncomfortable and the ergonomics badly designed.
At first, you notice how flat the bottom of the grip is, it doesn't hug your hand, it is rough. The AF ON, * and grid buttons are too high and the joystick is too low. Keeping your index finger on the shutter and moving the joystick is very uncomfortable, the joystick is too low and you need to spread your fingers too much, therefore losing grip on the camera... Very bad.
Using the camera on landscape mode, you realize the vertical version is totally off. In landscape, your thumb rests properly on a rubberized groove and the joystick is in the right position. The joystick is 1/2" inch lower on the grip compared to the camera. Meaning you have to "search" for it with your thumb to find it. It seems like a problem getting used to the different layout while shooting fast and switching from landscape to portrait... My friend is already aggravated and disappointed... I would be too...
Here is a layout comparison between a 1D X and a 5D III... The 5D is red, 1D is green.
Notice the thumb grooves and how low and awkward the  5D joystick is.
People think the 1D's are not worth the extra money... Hey, u get a 5D and get Digic 5, the same FF sensor, u get 4 extra MP, a BG-11E and still pay $3000 less than a 1D X... Well, u get what u pay for... A limited camera with bad ergonomics...  :o
I can't wait for my new 1D X....

EOS Bodies / 5D III 12800/25600 ISO Samples
« on: April 03, 2012, 10:52:36 AM »
All JPEG's

Office shots: Canon 5D III, Canon 24-70 F2.8L F4.0 1/160 25600 ISO (2 small computer monitors as the light source)

The Ferrari:Canon 5D III, Canon 24-70 F2.8L F4.0 1/125 12800 ISO (Garage available light)

Kodak Vintage Camera: Canon 5D III, Canon 24-70 F2.8L F8.0 1/125 25600 ISO (250W modeling light from 1 soft box)

Original 11MB images are here:

Here is a little comparison based on Pixel Size and Actual Photoshop Percentage between 6 Cameras.
Pixel size doesn't really say anything. 16MP vs 32MP is not really double the size. What matter is the actual percentage in Photoshop to make the image reach the next MP size.
As you can see in the chart, there is a 15% increase from 16MP to 22MP. A percentage that won't ruin your image if you want to make it a little bigger... Now, a full 50% enlargement will introduce artifacts, noise and blur to your image, so you probably won't want to do that...

I do believe in per-pixel quality and noise levels but if you are a studio photographer who shoots at ISO 50 or 100 most of the time, you probably don't care and want 50% more Megapixels to play with. I do see the fact that the Nikon D4 is going to cost double the D800 and have  less than half the MP so there has to be something there to make it better but if u want raw huge files the D800 will be the winner no matter how you see it.

Lenses / 24-70 too short for full frame?
« on: February 13, 2012, 09:51:41 AM »
I already preordered the new 24-70
II and I am really looking forward to replacing my existing 24-70.
I am also waiting for the 1D X. I never owned a full frame camera (I have a 1D IV) so I am concerned about the lens being too "short"...
I find myself having to move too close to the subject most of the time to get a close up.
With a FF the lens is going to be wider and shorter still. I wish they did a 24-105 2.8 instead. That would have been the perfect FF lens.
I also hate the new hood. I keep the hood on the 24-70 on all The time.
First of all it looks great cause you don't see the
Lens extended or retracted. Second, it protects the lens and the mechanism.
When you put the camera down the hood
Acts as support for the lens. Now, with the new hood, if the lens is extended, the pressure Point is on the tip and I believe the "play" will eventually "bend" the lens
Or at least damage the mechanism...
Also these flower type hoods leak light and flare
Like crazy.

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