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Messages - 7enderbender

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Lenses / Re: Canon 50 1.4 worth the upgrade?
« on: April 22, 2012, 07:03:07 PM »
I love the optics. There is a reason why this lens used to be the reference lens for decades. People who complain about sharpness or contrast issues may have bad copies or just higher standards. It delivers results that are pretty close to the 50L (which some say has also some issues perhaps). Build quality is another problem.

So in short: getting a really really outstanding 50mm lens is a bit of a problem and you always have to compromise in one way or another. Some have mentioned the Sigma. Never tried that one. Reports have been mixed as well. Other options are manual focus lenses, e.g the Zeiss offers (and yet again some issues there as well it seems) or the old FD or FL lenses with the Ed Mika conversion kits.

The last two are on my short list. Still hoping for upgrades to the EF 50 1.4 or 50L.

50 or 55mm lenses on full frame are great in my opinion and if you like and use that focal length a lot and like the options that wide aperture primes offer than it's certainly worth investing into something you like and feel comfortable with.

I'm happily using the 50 1.4 for now. I handle it like raw eggs and leave the lens hood on for mechanical protection of the clutch at all times.

Software & Accessories / Re: Laptops for photo editing and other use
« on: April 21, 2012, 02:48:18 PM »
I use a Lenovo W500 with the 1920x1200 screen upgrade and switchable graphics  It's a tough laptop too.

Hmm, didn't know this existed. Specs look like they fit the bill. How do you like the screen? 1920x1200 (WUXGA?) at 15" looks just like what I had in mind. How are brightness, color, sharpness on that one in your experience?

Software & Accessories / Re: Laptops for photo editing and other use
« on: April 20, 2012, 10:59:41 AM »
I am getting a Lenovo X220 Tablet.  Has a built in Wacom + Multitouch.  I'll let you know how I like it after I test it out.  There is a review of it by a photographer here:

Lenovo X220 Tablet X220t Review for Photography Professionals - Night and Day Photography Shop Talk

Another interesting idea. I'd actually have to play with this. Not a big fan of touch screens and 1366x768 just doesn't seem to cut it.

Software & Accessories / Re: Laptops for photo editing and other use
« on: April 20, 2012, 10:40:15 AM »
To choose a laptop forget brands, image and chit chat. Write down what you want and get the closest thing to that wish list. But, like with cameras, the best will cost you.

As you are dealing with images I would never personally go below 1920x1080 screen, I prefer matte, maybe you want to consider, toucscreens, IPS. Then you should consider the software you use, and which GPU works best with them (probably nvidia if you use Adobe products), get at least 16GB RAM but if you can expand it to 32 or more later that would be useful as well, 2 internal HDs is good for storage and speed. etc.

Once you decide all of the above there will be very few real options left.

And just to point you in the right direction. Look up Dell Precisions, a new one will come out soon the M6700. Doubt you can find anything better anywhere.

Thanks for that tip. I'll definitely look into that. As far as the specs go you totally nailed it. 1920x1080 on a 15" screen is the bare minimum - ideally it should be more, or rather denser- and with that you are already down to very few options. Everything else could be pretty standard specs as far as I'm concerned - whatever works well with regular productivity software plus Photoshop. That's pretty much all I need. No gaming, watching videoes, etc.
Lots of storage, 2 HDs ideally and a really good keyboard/point-and-click-device and Bob's your uncle. Only, this seems to be wishful thinking in the current laptop market.

Software & Accessories / Re: Laptops for photo editing and other use
« on: April 19, 2012, 11:08:17 PM »
Dude... Take a deep breath and consider coming over to the dark side.  :D

Consider this.  You can get a 15" MBP with a hi-res non-glare screen.  Then max out the RAM with OWC Ram to 16BG.  Then put in an OWC Data Doubler as a dedicated scratch disc and your MBP should smoke. 

I can't speak to the PC, but like your Lenovo, my Macs "just work".  I currently use a 2009 White Macbook with a Seagate Hybrid SSD hard drive and 6GB of Ram.  I process HDR and Capture One/P+ files all the time.  Is it AWESOME... no, but it's from 2009.  And it's made of plastic, and it was $1000 so I don't care about smashing it to bits.  I'll be upgrading this year when the new MB's come out and the "old" ones drop a little in price.

I also hate the idea of not having battery swap-ability but you can get "remote batteries" if you're not near a plug for 8 hrs.  (  And if your battery loses its ability to hole a charge, it really isn't that hard to change yourself.

As for Apple politics, please enlighten me.  I have no idea what you're talking about.  Hippies or Facists?  Vegetarians or Meat Eaters?  Or are you just against their policy of charging a S##tload of money for an awesome machine?  Cause it bugs me too.

You know what? I'm an open minded person. I'll look into the option again just like I've done any time I needed a new computer and also in between.

But I have doubts and that's the "politics" I was referring to. And I don't mean politics really - though it somehow appears to be related, but that's where things get really complicated. It's this annoying mother-knows-best approach. Take it or leave it. And once we have sucked you in you'll have to just keep buying and updating because all the other stuff won't really work with it.

But hey, if it's really that good?? After all, my dad has never used any, err, remote assistance for his iPhone - unlike all his other (PC) gadgets that I take care of on a regular basis and from a distance.

I'll keep my eyes open and am curious if Apple will really come out with some kind of retina display. That could be the selling point - unlike their "hi res" 15" display which my 6 year old ThinkPad still beats. And if they maybe then throw in a mouse button or two in addition to the hideous trackpad we might be in business. And for Office (including a fully functional version of PowerPoint and Excel...) I could switch to a Win7 installation. So who knows - maybe I'll give it another shot. Only that this is easily a $3000 endeavor with software and all...

But then again the laptop PC market has nothing better to offer it seems.

Software & Accessories / Re: Laptops for photo editing and other use
« on: April 19, 2012, 09:36:08 PM »
I know that lots of folks like the MBPs. I just can't get to understand why. They are big, the screen resolution is low, the keyboard is horrid and you can't even change your own battery or really anything.
And for all that they are very expensive and not fully compatible with a lot of stuff. Not to speak of the fact that Adobe would charge me again to get a new CS5 version. That's not Apples fault but still. No way will I buy anything Apple anytime soon.

Software & Accessories / Laptops for photo editing and other use
« on: April 19, 2012, 05:10:01 PM »
Am I the only one who is frustrated by the limited choices available for high quality laptops? I currently use a dual core 2GB IBM/Lenovo T60 - the old kind with the 14" high resolution 4:3 ratio screen. I love that thing and it's my most used computer in the house. And I do 90% of my photo editing with it and usually don't even touch my desktop PC with its big screen and all.

The T60 is extremely sharp, the colors are surprisingly accurate and with its perfect keyboard, trackpoint and form factor just works for me. And this is for both business use (Word, Excel, email) and photo editing (CS5, LR3). Performance is mostly good enough unless there are too many photos open or if its a power hungry process such as HDR processing. So in other words: it works.

Problem is that eventually I'll have to replace it. So I started looking around. And that really wasn't a pretty sight. Lenovos still come with the good old IBM keyboard and the trackpoint and some of the other great features - but it appears their screens have a lot of issues now.

Dell seems to have an XPS model with a good screen but I always found their build quality for laptops to be substandard. Not to speak of the toy keyboard.

Well, and that gets us to Apple. I really really don't like that company and its politics. And the MacBook pros are not only ugly (who cares) but also bulky and unruly compared to my 14" IBM - and don't even match the screen resolution. Keyboard is awful also. And then you can't change anything yourself not even a battery or so. So that's very likely (again) a big no-no.

And now what? Sonys look pretty weak also. Some point to Sager. Not sure about that. I'd need to actually see one of those somewhere.

Any thoughts? It's not even the budget so much. I'm ok with shelling out $2000 or so if it is suited for lots of typing, portable and has a stellar screen for photo editing. 14 or 15" would be ok. Oh, and a large and fast hard drive. For the life of me, I can't seem to find anything like that.

Lenses / Re: FL 55mm 1.2 or FD 50mm 1.2L?
« on: April 19, 2012, 01:18:18 PM »
I am looking forward to get an EdMika Adapter, but first I'll have to get one of these old lenses.

Unfortunately I can't decide if I should seek for the FL 55mm 1.2 or the FD 50mm 1.2L (latter I actually received an offer for..).

Any comments about the IQ (differences) of these two lenses? Thanks in advance.

They're both excellent. The latter will likely be much more expensive. Let's hear how you decide. I'm still thinking about getting one of the conversion gets for these as well. I recently bought his  adapter for my FD500 f/8. Fabulous quality.

My guess is that the 50L would be slightly better in image quality ( a friend of mine has it and it is truly outstanding). The 55 is unique just for it's slightly longer focal length and for the placement of the aperture ring. I can totally see reasons to lust after both ;-) Especially if you really are into the 50mm range like I am and like the build and feel of the old FD lenses.

Lenses / Re: Canon 135mm f2 L
« on: April 19, 2012, 01:09:05 PM »
So, I see a lot of people complaining that this lens needs IS. Does anyone here that own it feel like it truly does? Is it mostly because of the focal length? It's fast aperture seems like it wouldn't warrant that you would need IS in most situations.

I find myself mostly shooting handheld street shots and this lens seems that it would draw a lot less attention.

Lastly, reviews seem phenomenal. I'm assuming most of the community here feels the same?

Thanks for the opinions!

I like it as is. No need for IS. IS is just another thing that breaks and has the potential to degrade image quality. There is really no need to mess with the lens other than (like really all AF lenses) a few upgrades to the build quality. I'd like it even more if it had fewer plastic parts and the manual focus ring was dampened more.

But for an EF/autofocus lens it's pretty decent even in that department. The image quality is as outstanding as it gets.

EOS Bodies / Re: 5D Mark III is it better than the 5D Mark II
« on: April 18, 2012, 09:07:41 PM »
Hi All,
Since the 5D Mark III came out there seems to be alot of people on this forum disappointed about it. Some say that Canon didn't listen to the users. Others are saying the Nikon D800 beats it on all specs.
I like alot of people who come here probably have invested a fair deal in Canon compatible lens and so at least for the moment are fairly stuck with Canon. It would be a major chance to move to Nikon at this stage and a major sell off of existing gear.  :-\
What I am wondering is are there people here with real world experience (as opposed to Spec knowledge) of the 5D Mark III and how does it compare to the 5D Mark II?
Is it a major improvement on the Mark II? ???
Kind Regards

I think this all depends. I haven't used the 5DIII yet. Looks like a good camera to me. I personally see no reason to sell my 5DII and spend significantly more on the Mark III. The only benefit to me would be the better AF system and even that is not a top priority to me. The better AF comes at the price of non-interchangeable focus screens and for people like me who ultimately prefer manual focus that could be a bit of an issue. Everything else is not of much interest like the higher ISO or any video capabilities. I don't care for either.
The new flash system seems quite nice so that might be a plus but again not enough to upgrade on body + several speedlites + controller unit at this point.

It comes down to what your needs and expectations are and if you are invested in something already. And let's be clear: all systems have some issues and nothing is perfect. Digital SLRs have come a long way and are now more than acceptable and quite useful. And that's about it. I personally chose Canon based on my prior experience with film gear and because I think that for the money they have the best lenses (build quality in general is nothing to call home about but then Nikon isn't any better only you pay more for the equivalent lenses).

Bodies are the disposable part in this day and age, unfortunately. So pick that based on your current needs and which of the quirks you're more willing to put up with. If money were no objective I'd have a look at what Leica has to offer...and if time and space was unlimited I'd still shoot film. In real life and with finite budgets and time my 5DII does a great job. I'm sure the 5DIII or whatever is out by then will as well.

My 2c

Hard to say. Maybe it was the lack of a lens hood, maybe it was the polarizer not playing nice with the lens/camera. I've seen samples of that before where non-circular polarizers cause some weird artifacts with digital SLRs.

I pretty much always leave the lens hoods on all my lenses - for physical protection alone.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: 5D MKIII vs 1Ds MKIII
« on: April 17, 2012, 01:14:27 PM »
It comes down to price and budget of course, but I still think that the 1DsIII is the most ideal camera on the market. I was "only" able to afford the 5DII but I would chose the 1DsIII over any of the others, including the 5DIII and the 1Dx. I still don't see how the 1Dx is an "upgrade" from the previous top shelf pro model.

Well, obviously there are enough reports that all this stuff can take a bit of beating. I'm extremely careful with all my gear. Most of my 30 year old FD lenses still look like new. And those - unlike modern lenses, including "L" lenses - were really build like tanks. Most of what you have today is plastic anyway even on L lenses. Which may actually be better for certain accidents. But since there is glass and lots of moving parts involved I always try to be careful anyway. Make sure you have the proper bags and cases. Have a safe workflow for changing lenses. Try to work on a stable and large enough surface - if necessary, put the bag or case on the ground and change lenses there. And then there is slamming into things of course that you want to avoid.

EOS Bodies / Re: How about an app store for EOS cameras?
« on: April 11, 2012, 09:19:29 AM »
Now that cameras are dedicated imaging computers, why not have an app store where you can download certified apps for your camera that are written by 3rd parties?

That would make it possible for people to write their own zebra stripes app or develop their own apps to deliver better bracketing support ... - make it possible for the camera to support more features without Canon having to do all of the research, development and testing.

So in other words: you want the Apple model for Canon cameras? Naw, thanks. There is a reason why I don't use Apple computers. Actually, there is more than one reason, but this is one of them. They can keep their "apps" as far as I'm concerned.

EOS Bodies / Re: How many actuations on your Canons?
« on: April 09, 2012, 01:41:17 PM »
Related question only less technical:

How many pictures per event does all this translate to? I don't do any this for a living but have been covering several events lately. Mostly live music and fundraisers etc.
I figure that I shoot about 500 pictures per event of which 100 or so make it into a final selection for processing and for the client to use and/or pick from.

And even if I did one of those once a week it would only come out to 26,000 actuations per year. My 5DII is now two years old and has about 9000 or so actuations on it. It's like brand new. And to me it feels like I have used it a lot. Maybe it's coming more or less directly from film. But I can't get myself just clicking away.

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