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Messages - Random Orbits

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Lenses / Re: canon 50mm 1.4 vs 1.2
« on: August 07, 2013, 10:41:20 PM »
Never had much luck with the f/1.4.  AF from f/1.4-f/2 was hit or miss and it got significantly better at f/2.8.  50L is a lot more consistent and a lot better wide open.  Like others have said, the 50L renders better and is more suited for portraiture.  If you want a more general use lens at 50mm, then the 24-70 II will be better than any EF 50 prime at f/2.8 and smaller.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: More body upgrade from 40d questions???
« on: August 07, 2013, 10:23:24 PM »
Thanks to all of you who responded.  Guess I'll be shopping for a new lens.  Hmmmm...  70-300L or wait for the new 100-400L?


Try out the lenses in a store if you can.  The 100-400L is almost as heavy as the 70-200 f/2.8 IS II.  The 70-300L is much more compact and significantly lighter.  I'd opt for the 70-300L but if you want the lens primarily at the long end, then the 100-400 may be the better option.

Lenses / Re: What should I upgrade? I can't be done, can I?
« on: August 07, 2013, 08:59:28 AM »
You know you want the 100L back.  Just because it can go to 1:1 doesn't mean you have to use it at 1:1.

Lenses / Re: Canon EF 100-400 f/4-5.6L IS Update [CR2]
« on: August 06, 2013, 12:58:45 PM »
I'm hoping for better IQ in a lighter package.  It will get the former, but the latter seems unlikely.  Can't wait for reviews of this lens to start dribbling out.  Hoping it will start shipping sooner rather than later, so that it might be on the rebate list that much sooner.   ;D

Lenses / Re: Canon 14mm II for "Yangshuo, China"
« on: August 06, 2013, 11:00:58 AM »
I like the 14mm II and TS-E 17 better than the 16-35 II, but the 16-35 II is hard to beat for travel like this.  The 14 II is prone to CAs and does not take filters, but it has better IQ than the 16-35 II, is wider and is more compact.  Unless you plan on using the 16-35 II at 16mm exclusively, I wouldn't consider the 14mm prime.  And the 14mm feels a lot wider in usage than the 2mm difference from the 16-35 II may indicate.

If I had the choice and had sufficient time, then I'd consider the TS-E 17 over the 16-35 II.  The shift will help for architecture/landscape shots, and it can help get you some nice panoramas.  But it is MF only.  In this case, the 24-70 would be the primary, and the TS-E 17 would be for the special shots.  If you're going to be crunched for time, then the 16-35 II offers good IQ but is much more versatile.

Lenses / Re: DXO Mark, testing ?
« on: August 04, 2013, 09:41:37 PM »
The body matters in these scores, and the body that is selected according to your link is an 350D, which is an 8 MP camera.  Change the body to a 5DIII and the score jumps significantly.

The 200-400 gets close to prime lens IQ, even according to DXO

Reviews / Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« on: August 01, 2013, 01:01:01 PM »
What would the opinion be amongst those of you who have (or have used) both the 70-300L and one of the 70-200 f/2.8 variants?  This is, to me, a tough question.  One of the things that I love about the 70-300L is that it can stand up in most camera bags and thus doesn't take up any more room for travel.  I am about to leave on a cruise and will be packing the Tamron 24-70 VC + the 70-300L as it has become my go-to kit and can fit in a sling bag.

Moving to a 70-200 f/2.8 variant changes the rules for travel.  But as an experienced event photographer, I would certainly say in that arena a 70-200 f/2.8 is perhaps the most valuable tool a photographer could have.


If I could only have 1, then I'd have to choose the 70-200 II and live with its size and weight.  The 70-300L is a  very capable lens, but the 70-200 II focuses more accurately (especially on lower contrast targets) and tracks moving targets better and I find I like its colors better and requires less post-processing than the 70-300L.    The larger aperture max aperture helps to diffuse the background an the vignetting wide open only helps to make the subject pop more.  If sports and portraiture are your thing, then the 70-200 II is tough to beat.  It also does better getting to 400mm with the 2x.

The 70-300L does well by achieving IQ close to the 70-200 II in a compact, lighter and less expensive package.  It wins at the long end compared to the 70-200 II + 1.4x but loses a stop, but its biggest advantages are size and weight.  It's a great travel lens.  For those that are more concerned about weight and size of a 70-200 II, the 70-300L is an attractive option.  I'd opt for a 70-300L over a 70-200 f/4 variant.  The 70-300L is still a little shorter and more packable (fits bags vertically) than the slimmer but longer 70-200 f/4s and it has a longer native focal length range while losing a fraction of a stop.

Technical Support / Re: Not Windows
« on: July 30, 2013, 08:58:56 PM »
-1 ... because today's pcs are built out of fewer components (many things are on the cpu die for example), there is very little to customize in a standard setup that *really* makes a difference - which is why so many oem are going out of business, they've simply lost their selling points.

On the other hands buying a complete pc ensures you support (fewer points to argue over who has done what wrong) and people who do this for a living imho simply are better at building a clean machine with proper cabling than me doing it every so many years. Plus many oems get very competitive bulk prices for their components which I find very hard to match even when buying at the cheapest discount/online shops I know.

It might make a difference for hardcore gaming and ultra-high end setups, but for your general lightroom/ps editing personally I'm leaning towards buying a complete desktop once I feel the need for more speed than my current crappy laptop can deliver.

-1.  Just because the chipset includes more features, it doesn't mean that they perform well.  The cheap complete PCs have older/slower technologies, sometimes several generations older.  RAM in groups and speeds that make them harder to upgrade to significantly larger values, power supplies that can barely support additional hardware (i.e. discrete video), etc.  If you want a barebones computer (around 500), then a complete PC might be worth it, although you can still get chassis + MB + cpu as a package and add on for a competitive price).

The key to building your own is to get quality parts the first time.  Reuse your monitor, keyboard, mouse, case, optical drive, HDDs and power supply.  Upgrade the video card, motherboard, add a HDD or a SDD or whatever you want.  The computer companies may be able to buy parts for less money but then you're paying for their labor, their overhead and their profit.

Software & Accessories / Re: Importing images method...???
« on: July 29, 2013, 02:13:09 PM »
I've used both.  When only using one camera/card, I used to use the cable to connect the camera to the computer.  I also tend to leave a USB cable with an iPad adapter in the camera bag for travel so that I can transfer files from the camera to the iPad because few devices are equipped with slots for compact flash.

I bought a card reader to update the camera firmware, and since then, I've tended to use the card reader more.  For multiple cameras/cards, the card reader is more convenient.

Lenses / Re: Buy 50mm f1.2L now or wait for the II?
« on: July 29, 2013, 08:09:47 AM »
Now there are people suggesting to get the FF body first. Believe me I have considered that many many times but I still believe investing in a good lens first is the wiser options. My EF lens is only the 50 f1.8 and 85 f1.8. My tammy 17-50 is an efs lens so it'll be not usable.
After browsing so many reviews on the net, I found this link and it made me think , let's wait for the II version to come out! To spend a large amount of money only to be disappointed is not acceptable. I'm not going for other L lens yet at the moment as my lens roadmap is to go with the L primes only.
85mm f1.2 is next in line, and so is the 135mm f2. The L zoom lens that I may consider is 17-40 f4 for travel, landscape and 70-200 IS II for wedding candid in a large hall).
Perhaps this 50mm f1.2 can be put on hold much longer until the ver II comes out.

The L primes-only roadmap used to get you the best IQ, but that was before the 24-70 II.  The 24-70 II isn't perfect but it is a match against the 24L II and is better than the 35L (and is as good as the Sigma 35) and is a much better 50mm than any EF 50mm prime.  The colors and rendering are prime-like.  It does have more vignetting at f/2.8 than the primes (especially at 24mm), but for most, it is a trade worth making.  The primes will give you better low light performance, but is that worth spending 1k or more to upgrade the performance of your 50 and/or 85 or would it make sense to spend that money elsewhere?

I'm bringing this up not because I think you should go zoom over primes, but to give you food for thought.  It is better to think about these trades now before you start committing youself to some pretty expensive gear.

Lenses / Re: Buy 50mm f1.2L now or wait for the II?
« on: July 28, 2013, 07:44:52 PM »
If you have FF compatible lenses already, I'd suggest getting the FF camera first, and then deciding on a fast prime later.  FF + fast primes give you thin DOFs, which you can use creatively to good effect.  How you use each lens will chance when you move from APS-C to FF, so get the camera first, then use it and then get the lens at the focal length you use most.

It's true that the 50L is not the sharpest, so try it before you buy.  It has other qualities, but it is up to you if it is worth it.  I don't find it as sharp as the 35L or 85L, but I find that it AFs much better than the 50 f/1.4 especially at larger apertures, where it is more critical. 

I vote Tamron.  Reviews state that it compares well versus 24-70 f/2.8 version 1, plus you get IS and a warranty.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Canon Refurbished Cameras & Lenses
« on: July 26, 2013, 12:00:05 PM »
Bought a EF-S 10-22 and later a 5DII, and was happy with both purchases.  Now with a one year warranty, going refurbished is a no-brainer.

Lenses / Re: If You Could Have One 1 Lens...
« on: July 26, 2013, 11:56:35 AM »
If I could only have 1 lens, then I'd seriously think about giving up the SLR.  One of its main advantages is to be able to use different lenses under different situations...

5DIII first, which will then become your primary with your 5DII serving as the backup.  The 5DIII's outer focus points work well with fast glass and gives you so much more freedom compared to the 5D II.  I'd wait for the canon refurb store to do a sale or look for another deal from BVI. 

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