September 02, 2014, 09:22:49 PM

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Messages - Random Orbits

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1
Lenses / Re: Canon EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye - Durability?
« on: Today at 09:41:42 AM »
...

If you think that's an exposed front element, try the TS-E 17mm...   ;)

Which is why I tend to treat the 8-15 and TS-E 17 the same way, trying to keep the cap on most of the time.  That and the fact that the 17's cap is even larger and less comfortable in a pocket.

If I remember correctly, the 14L II has a similar cap arrangement as the 8-15's clipping to the petal hood.  My 14's hood resides in the closet somewhere... I use a lenscoat instead.

2
Lenses / Re: Canon EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye - Durability?
« on: Today at 09:36:58 AM »
I am aware of the clumsy cap/hood interface complaints...  Was hoping perhaps one purchased in 2014 would have improved manufacturing tolerances to make this occurrence less likely.

When cleaning the lens, does it clean easy (like a B+W XS-Pro Nano filter?) or does it require polishing like a normal lens.  I am trying to figure out if Canon went out of their way to put on some durable anti-scratch, easy clean coatings on this lens which I am hoping they did given how exposed the element is.

It cleans easily.  It's usually capped, so it doesn't tend to get that dirty, but a microfiber cloth or a lens pen to take off the smudges and a rocket blower/brush to blow off the dust/lens pen dust is all it really needs most of the time.  I have more problems with dust than smudges anyway, and a blower works fine.  With the fisheyes, you have to be a bit more concerned about lens surface dirt/contaminents because it can show up in the image if you're not careful.

3
Lenses / Re: Need some advice - lens calibration
« on: Today at 09:25:40 AM »
How does it look when you use LiveView to focus?  Using manual focus without a focus screen made for it will be difficult to get consistent results with fast lenses.

If the LiveView images look good, and your AFMA attempts do not seem to fix the issue, the lens may need to be calibrated by Canon.  I had a similar issue with my 24L II, and I took a series of pictures of an object at f/1.4, f/2, f/2.8, f/4, f/5.6 and sent the images with the lens to Canon explaining that the AF accuracy was not nearly as good as the LiveView images taken at the same images (also included those images).  The service sheet stated they they adjusted the focusing board on the lens, but did not go into details.  No parts needed to be replaced, it was an adjustment only, so hopefully, it won't be very expensive.  Mine was under warranty at the time...

4
Lenses / Re: Canon EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye - Durability?
« on: Today at 09:16:43 AM »
I have used this lens for quite a while, and I'm very cautious with it. The front element protrudes a lot, and I'm sure it will get scratched if i hit it on something. That's why I always attach the hood between shots, Or keep it in front of me where I can see whats coming towards the lens.

The hood also comes loose quite easily, which is another concern. It is however not as bad as the 15mm prime, which jumped out of its hood while I was hiking and the lens was in my bag, and it landed not entirely strait back on the hood, which resulted in the aluminium hood scratching against the front element for two hours. Luckily enough that was outside of a crop camera frame, so it was still sell-able.

It takes some getting used to, but the routine of detaching an attaching the hood while you move around becomes natural, and really should not be a reason not to buy this awesome lens.

The lens cap and hood are two pieces but I take both off at the same time by twisting off the hood.  I don't bother with leaving the hood on only because it can interfere when you want a circular image, and the interface between the cap and hood is not very secure and I'd rather not fumble around clipping the cap to the hood in the field. 

5
Pricewatch Deals / Re: Deal: EOS M w/22mm f/2 STM $249
« on: September 01, 2014, 10:29:18 AM »
Gotcha.  I purchased the M mostly out of curiosity because of the cheap price now.  The fact that it doesn't have an onboard flash makes it weak in some indoor compact situations.  And I'll definitely miss a viewfinder.  I'll have to wait and see until I get it, update the firmware and shoot with it a bit.  The SL1 will stay in my arsenal for years for a multitude of uses.  The M will likely be a flash in the pan for the reasons I've already read about.  But who knows since some on CR like theirs, it seemed short sighted to blow it off when I could get it for $249.  I have small flashes already and I just ordered a EF adapter for $63 so I guess I'm ready to go except for an extra battery.  Any advice I should be aware of?  Thanks.

I bought mine when it was 300 with the 22 f/2, then added a white box 18-55, and a retail 11-22 (from Canada).  I also got a 270 EX II flash for it.  If you treat it like a P&S, it will meet/exceed your expectations.  Tap to shoot is good at times, and IQ is up to Canon APS-C levels.  I have the EF adapter too, but I've rarely used it.  Because it can AF in video, we use that for family videos rather than the DSLR.  Play with the AF settings (a lot of us use one shot to reduce battery drain).

I was hoping that Canon would update the M like they did with the Rebel line every year.  I'd like to see it upgraded with the 70D sensor, but I'm in no rush.  The system has potential.  The lenses are nice, and the camera size is nice.  The AF speed is its Achilles heel, and that is fixable with current technology.

6
Pricewatch Deals / Re: Deal: EOS M w/22mm f/2 STM $249
« on: August 31, 2014, 11:51:21 PM »
The dealbreaker for me about the SL1 is the lack of AFMA.  To take advantange of fast glass, it needs AFMA.  Sure, you can use slower lenses, but then it's not much over the EF-M's 18-55...

Really?  AFMA missing is a deal breaker?  How did you survive before mid 2007 or 2008 when Canon first started offering AFMA?  I think when one is shooting an SL1, while it's always nice to have, AFMA is not the primary purpose of the camera.  Same could be said for the EOS M.  Personally, I think AFMA should be standard on any removable lens camera but it's not a deal breaker on an entry level lightweight Rebel body.

For fast lenses, it is.  I had a 20D and a 17-55 f/2.8 back then, and I didn't know how good the lens was until I used it on a 7D and used AFMA.  Then I got a 35L, and it was even more crucial to have AFMA.  So yes, a lot of my shots with the 20D are slightly OOF.  I thought it was the quality of the lens and camera combination.  Even without AFMA, it was better than the kits lens, but it was not anything as when it actually got it right.  I learned to to take multiple shots hoping to get one whose error was "right on."

And no, the same can't be said of the EOS-M.  No mirror, no PDAF, no AFMA issue.  And if you're using slower, more compact lenses on the SL1, then the EF-M 18-55 compares well.  I got the EOS-M to replace the P&S, and it has done that job well.  The 11-22/22/18-55 + M body is compact system.  I use the 5DIII much more often, but when DSLRS aren't allowed, I grab the M.

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Pricewatch Deals / Re: Deal: EOS M w/22mm f/2 STM $249
« on: August 31, 2014, 10:46:45 PM »
Good deal?

I've always liked this camera. Especially after the firmware upgrade. Always wanted to buy one.

But the lack of quality lenses for it stops me every time. I would only consider the 18-55mm. But that lens is only f3.5. MINIMUM would have to be f2.8. Adding an adapter for a better lens takes away it's size and cost attractiveness. At that point, buy an SL1 instead. Unless Canon comes out with an M2 in the United States, the 'M' is a dead-end product.

Pity.  My favorite lenses for the system are the 22 and the 11-22.

The dealbreaker for me about the SL1 is the lack of AFMA.  To take advantange of fast glass, it needs AFMA.  Sure, you can use slower lenses, but then it's not much over the EF-M's 18-55...

8
Lenses / Re: Canon MP-E 65 f/2.8
« on: August 30, 2014, 11:37:40 AM »
The lens does not focus at infinity and the working distance is tight, so you'll definitely need flash a lot of the time (effective aperture drops with higher magnification).  It is not a general purpose lens, it is a specialist lens, but it does what it does very well.  It starts at where the 100L ends, 1:1 and goes to 5:1.  DOF will get extremely thin at higher magnifications, so you'll probably start focus stacking a lot more.  The 100L is much easier to use for subjects that you want closer to 1:1.  The MP-E comes into its own for smaller targets.

At the pixel level, it is not the "sharpest" lens and it gets softer at higher magnifications, but it is sharp enough.  You can use it handheld and rocking back and forth to get the images for blending, but it's much easier to use on a tripod with rails.

9
Lenses / Re: New Lens Information for Photokina
« on: August 29, 2014, 10:52:07 AM »
Mac, I generally agree with your viewpoint, but I do wonder how Canon would slot this lens. Since the 24-105 "L" already sells for around $600 in white box form, it seems like it would be hard to make this lens competitive in price, unless it is really, really cheap.

Maybe they are looking to stop selling the 24-105 "L" as a kit lens, wait for the supply to dry up in the market and then in a few years introduce a 24-105 "L" II at a significantly increased price? If that happens, we'll all be patting ourselves on the back for getting the 24-105 "L" when it was cheap.

+1.  I'm guessing the 24-70 f/4 IS will replace the 24-105 f/4 as the de facto kit lens.  The 24-105 f/4 II would then sit between the 24-70 f/4 IS and 24-70 f/2.8 II.

I figure that the 24-105 is targeted to be sold it kits primarily.  Think of a 1000-1500 FF kit with a this 24-105 consumer zoom.

10
Lenses / Re: New Lens Information for Photokina
« on: August 29, 2014, 10:10:50 AM »
An EF-S 24mm f/2.8 pancake makes a lot more sense than an EF version given the size of the existing 24mm EF lenses, plus it gives the APS-C users the same FOV as a 40mm pancake for FF.  Canon could have make a EF 24 f/4 pancake, but that's a bit slow on FF and even worse for APS-C.

I'm not surprised that Canon is bringing out a new consumer line of lenses -- a line that falls below the L's and the midrange EFs (24 f/2.8 IS, 28 f/2.8 IS, 35 f/2 IS).  The camera market is not growing like it has been for the last 15 years, and FF camera prices are falling.  With falling FF prices, we'll start to see the reintroduction of consumer lenses for FF cameras.  Do people expect consumers to pony up $1000 to buy a FF camera and then $1000s more for lenses?  These lenses, which were ubiquitous with film cameras, did not sell well with their lower IQ and expensive FF bodies, but most consumers will be satifsfied with 24-105 or a 28-300 (rumored), and they might supplement it with another lens or two.

11
Lenses / Re: Best PRIME lenses to take to NYC?
« on: August 28, 2014, 08:24:50 PM »
If you restrict yourself to primes, then 35, 50, 85 and 135.  But why???  You lose so much focal length flexibility and range.

If it were me, I'd choose the 35, 50, 16-35 and 24-70, with the primes being used indoors or when you want shallower DOF.  If you plan on going on tours (bus or boat), then I'd take swap out a prime for the 70-200.


12
Lenses / Re: Which lens to take on bike trip?
« on: August 27, 2014, 11:45:59 AM »
70-200 f/4.  Length is more useful on that type of trip.  There might be some you miss, but you'll just have to adjust what and how you shoot.

13
Lenses / Re: What is the 5th EOS-M lens?
« on: August 27, 2014, 11:33:56 AM »
The EF-M adapter is on the far left.

14
Pricewatch Deals / Re: Placing an order today (I think) - need advice
« on: August 26, 2014, 09:08:34 PM »
Could you further elaborate as to the various types of filters offered by B+W?  The XS-Pro vs the F-Pro.. etc.  I don't see on the Schneider Optics page a comparison of the details of each.  What's the difference?  I found a thread online that claimed the F-Pro was made of brass whereas the XS-Pro wasn't, but according to Amazon, B&H, et. al. the XS-Pro is indeed made of brass.

I ask because between this thread, and this thread, I've gotten recommendations to go down the B+W route for filters.

Any help will be appreciated.  I'm going to post a similar question on the other thread too since I've inadvertently scattered questions across 2 threads.  I didn't realize that they were going to converge like this.

XS-Pro is a higher line of B+W filters.  See link for the features of XS-Pro, but in summary, XS-Pros are thinner (easier to use on UWA lenses without vignetting but not as many threads for the lens cap, which never bothered me), have multi-layered coatings and are easier to clean (nanocrystal coat).

http://www.schneideroptics.com/news/110308_xs-pro.htm

15
Lenses / Re: Would you buy the 35L now, or wait?
« on: August 25, 2014, 04:04:03 PM »
If you want a 35 mm lens and wonder if there will soon be a better one available, get a used 35L and you can more or less get your money back any day if you want something else instead. The Sigma is also worth considering if slight AF issues don't bother you that much. Personally I would now get a used 35L if didn't already have the Sigma.

+1 on a getting a used/refurbished 35L.

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