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Messages - ideaworx

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Lighting / Re: Trouble finding focus
« on: March 11, 2013, 01:05:03 PM »
Try taking the flash unit off, it slows down AF if the AF assist light is on.  Canon has promised a fix, but its not here yet.  Also try turning off the AF Assist light.  Its not going to help in any event.
The lens you use might have a affect on AF speed as well, hopefully its a fast AF lens.  Third party lenses cam be slow to autofocus.

I am shooting with 70-200mm II 2.8 and 85mm 1.2, both pretty snappy lenses. I got the email on the af assist light being addressed in a future firmware upgrade, I hope it helps a bit. Is there any value in using the likes of a flash bracket with a flashlight mounted to it that i can trigger on and off before taking the shot w/o it blowing out the image. I have found a couple flashlights that mount to the bottom of handguns that have pressure sensitive on/off functionality. I have a decent flash bracket I was considering using to do all this, but really not sure how I can avoid having the blown out shot from a giant flashlight glaring into the frame. Also wanted to mention I do have the ST-E3-RT as well, so if you think this would be helpful in this instance, please let me know.

Thanks again,


Lighting / Trouble finding focus
« on: March 11, 2013, 12:31:40 PM »
Hi All, been awhile since I posted here, been out trying to spend more time behind the lens than behind my keyboard. I have a certain shot I have been trying to get for the past weeks that is plaguing me, just not able to focus or get my setup correct to nail the shot. Let me paint a picture.

We are shooting Tarpon underneath bridges in Tampa, FL. The timing on the shot is essentially right when the fish hits the bug (we are fly fisherman), they realize the hook is set, and BAMM, they come jumping out of the water. Typically we get 5-10 jumps on each tarpon. We have very very limited light underneath the bridge and with the fish we are targetting, having a bunch of fill light would spook the fish. So I am trying to capture the moment the fish jumps in the proximity of 10-25ft and running into issues where I am unable to get the AF to pick up the subject fast enough.

My Setup: 5DMIII + 600EX(x2). I have captured the subject, but always is blurry, so wondering what some of the experts here might have as tricks to assist on this. Typically we are in a rough tide, so the boat bounces, so my chances of using a tripod/monopod is not great, but I do have both of these options available. As well I have tried higher ISOs and slower shutter speed, both which yield less than desirable results.

I appreciate any and all feedback and thanks again for a wonderful place for photogs to chat on our passion!



Lenses / Re: 70-300L or 70-200 2.8 IS II?
« on: August 14, 2012, 09:57:52 PM »

Ummm no.  The 70-200L II IS is sharper than the 70-300L.

+1 +1 70-200L is the sharpest tool in that shed.

Like this.

I'm curious, why would you think B&H would take it back?

None the less what I'm curious about is what you were using before to do this type of photography.

I did not expect them too, I was just curious if there was anything that can be done :)

I was not doing this type of photography, I shot alot on the water, but it was during the day, and not fish, I used to shoot babes in bikinis (or less) and am just trying to settle into what I really enjoy (and what my wife approves, lol).

Thanks everyone so far for the feedback, really informative and helpful for sure.



(Using RRS brackets...Not yet available)

Huh? I've had my RSS L-bracket for the 5DIII + BG-E11 for weeks, now, maybe over a month, and I had one for the un-gripped 5DIII for at least a few weeks before I got the one plus grip (couldn't wait).

You'll be glad to know that the BG-E11 version is awesome, fits like a glove, and actually makes the vertical grip a bit more comfortable than without. The non-gripped version is decidedly "meh."



I had not been informed it was ready to be honest, I appreciate the update. Pending my decision here, I may end up picking it up. Great to know it fits well, I expect nothing less than that from RRS, great products for sure.

If available visible light won't work would you consider using an IR converted camera with battery IR source?

You have two issues, close working distance and fast moving subject, not great for low light..

perhaps a hyperfocal situation with IR soucre?

Have you had a camera deliver satisfactory results before?

I have not considered a IR Source or any solution like this, have you had any experience with this?

And yes have had wonderful results with the camera so far, just not in this key situation. I love the camera to be honest, but just need to stick to the reasons I got it, to deliver these shots consistently.

The 1D X will be a little better, but you pay a lot to gain very little.  I'd rent one and see if it does the job.  The AF is about 90% the same, its faster due to the higher voltage driving the AF motor in the lens, but accuracy is not going to be but just a little better. The camera settings you use can have a big impact on the type of use you are doing.
As to your old one, 3 or 4 months is a long time to hold off on a return. 
Here are a couple of suggestions:
1. Contact Henry Posner of B&H and ask him for help.  He is their Goodwill Ambassador and will do anything he can.  e-mail henryp[at]bhphoto.com
2.  If you used a credit card, contact your credit card company and see if they can help, sometimes there is insurance that allows a return.
3.  Contact KEH and Adorama.  They will buy it, but you might not like what they offer.
4.  Sell on craigslist, Fred Miranda, or eBay.
Note, prices have dropped, so don't expect to get near the new price when selling used.  New, they are found for $3200, and as low as $3,000 on ebay.
Realistically, $2700-$2800 on craigslist or $2900 on ebay is the best you can hope for, assuming its in the box with all accessories and no mechanical scratches or damage from salt spray.
Before you sell it, RENT.  Otherwise, you may find that you still do not have a solution.  Also make sure you are using a fast lens, f/2 or faster is best.  There again, a rental might be smart.
Also consider a more powerful strobe.  There are much more powerful ones available.

Wow, very helpful information, I will reach out to Henry and see what can be done. Credit Card may be a good option as well. As for what I am hoping to get, I would hope for $3850, and would try and do the Camera + 24-105mm Lens Kit it came with and the BG-E11 Battery Grip, 4x Canon LP-E6 Batteries + Canon Charger + Pearstone Dual Charger + B+W Filters for 24-105(clear and uv), which would normally be $4300+$240+$650(mixed)... So $1500+/- savings(just some quick math, probably a bit askewed), and yes the whole unit is clean as can be, did not use any of the extra accessories in the box, I keep all my stuff very very very clean, probably too clean, lol. Preferably, I would like to keep the 5D for the underwater stuff I am doing, so I have a Wet Rig and Dry Rig ready at the drop of a hat. But that will just be a huge chunk to endure, but as I am learning fast in this biz, does not come cheap, nor easy :) And on the note of your suggestion of the function of the 1DX, the AF being faster is what is going to make ALL the difference on me getting a shot, and not.

i'm picturing you in the dark on a boat with your camera on a tripod trying to focus on a fish in the black water.   if that is the case i'm afraid that's just never going to happen. not until they use some other focusing methods at least. B&H and Adorama are awesome, and i don't blame you for trying to return the gear, but at this point that's pretty much insane to think that they should take it back. That ship has long since sailed. I really have no idea what the shooting conditions are like, but you probably just need some lights. I couple Alien Bees einsteins( FWI a shoe mounted flash is about 60Watt seconds for comparison with every doubling of power netting you a "stop")with their lithium power supply cost almost nothing compared to the 23k you dropped on the rest of your gear. if you are in the dark it'll make more of an impact on your photos than whatever camera/lens/etc you're running.   23k=1dx+some flashes+? 
  really, this does sound like interesting stuff though. night fishing and photography that is.

LOL, that would be some funny stuff. Actually we are under a bridge, very dark, but in 75% of cases we are shooting into a area that has a very light ambient light coming from the actual bridge. This helps in alot of cases with being able to acquire focus, but not all. For solutions on how to light, I have that down very well actually, it is the few milliseconds of no AF that are killing me. I am trying to do some stuff with AF Lock, basically have the shot pre focused and ready, but that doesnt produce favorable results either. For the lighting I have a CB Junior bracket mounted backwards with a 600ex mounted on the end of the bracket. Strapped on the flash I use a Harbor Designs Flash XTender, which is basically just a Fenrel lens that extends out my light 2 stops. Where I get stuck, which I almost have fixed, is the pre-light for focus. So I looked into getting a SureFire flashlight, that has a attachment available for law enforcement to use for compression lighting. So when I grip the handle, it turns on the Sure Fire enough for me to get AF, and shoot. But as I said above, it is the time for AF to get with the program in some cases. With tests I have seen here and other forums, as well as my own, I am seeing just a much more intelligently focused image with opportunities that have so many moving elements, and when a 150lb fish is jumping, and all those little particles of water are going, I am trying to not miss a single particle of water from being sharp, especially up close on the fish. I have went to the extent of using Gaff tape and my 600ex and hooking it onto a piling to create a more dramatic exposure, and I can assure you one way or the other we are going to nail it, just is timing, when there is fish that bite with when we get our setup perfect, to being pointed in the right direction, haha, like the alignment of the 7 moons of Venus.

I actually found in some quick tests, that I was able to focus in light so low, that the high ISO was pretty much too noisy to use, which is a first for any camera I've owned, usually the AF falls apart first. While it was only on stationary targets (apart from some slight wind) and darker subjects were a problem due to lack of contrast, I was impressed. It did depend on the AF selection though. I think I was using single point (as opposed to spot or point assist). Light was low enough for me to drop to ISO 25,600 and f/4 @ 1/125th handheld (420mm) and still almost a stop underexposed. It was extremely noisy (so not alot of detail left), but it seemed to be in focus, although it was so dark it was difficult to tell which point of the flowers and grasses I'd focused on. To be honest, I don't know that many (if any?) cameras would be able to focus any better in such low light and few would produce cleaner images (D3s perhaps), so I'd definitely add a voice to renting first. Another possible option would be trade-in, it's worth asking anyway.

Thanks for the insight!

And to be flat honest, the review by Andy Rouse of the 1DX, really sold me on the upgrade as well: http://www.andyrouse.co.uk/blog/223.php

Lighting / Re: How to light for Fast Action at night...
« on: July 30, 2012, 02:57:41 PM »
Your link is dead, and I'd like to see what it is you're referring.


Try that one, not sure what happened on the last one. [EDIT: Was the same image, lol]


I was tempted by the 5DIII, but glad I held out for the 1D X.

Delays are what scared me, didnt want to miss the height of the season here, and yeah, I bumped on that decision. :-x

Hey guys, maybe some insight here, maybe a good deal for someone, not sure. I purchased a 5DM3 kit at B&H on March 30, in that time I have been waiting for the mixed accessories to become available, as I typically shoot off a tripod (Using RRS brackets...Not yet available) and use a remote flash (New ST-E3-RT + 600EX's) and have just got to the season where we can do the photography that I purchased the camera for, night time tarpon fishing. We have tested the 5DM3, as it is a marvelous camera for daytime shooting, it is not delivering the results we hoped for, especially in the area of AF and IQ. When shooting at night, ISO is a big factor, and both cameras (based on results I have seen) appear to be the same, but the actual ability for the camera to focus and do it quickly, for what we are shooting, which you have a split second reaction time to capture the moment, is failing. I contacted B&H today, and they were not able to help me, in either a return or exchange, so I am asking here, if anyone has any insight on how I can deal with this (Minus just buying a 1DX on top of what I have already spent). I asked them if they could work with me, as since 3/30 i had spent $23,000 in their shop. They said it had been too long, nothing they could do. I would be more than willing to part with my equipment for a discounted price, so that I can efficiently make the needed upgrade. I am really up against a wall here as I desperately need the right tool for the job. Can anyone shed some light on this doom situation I have? Thanks in advance!

5D MK III Sample Images / Re: Macro Images with 5D MkIII
« on: July 22, 2012, 07:19:11 PM »
Here is one from the 5D3 that wasn't even taken with a macro lens.  Good example of the cropping ability of this camera.  This is about 1/12 of the actual frame shot.  I shot it with my 100-400L at 375mm, ISO 640, f/5.6 @ 1/500 second.

That is what I am saying, my 70-200mm produces images that typical people call Macro, and that is taking it down to a 1/8 or smaller crop! Very fun camera thus far. Running a AFMA on some lenses today to see if it helps any more, which would be amazing.


Lighting / Re: How to light for Fast Action at night...
« on: July 18, 2012, 04:40:32 PM »
Anyone else have a suggestion? We are not confident the Better Beamer will work, we have purchased it and are waiting, but have another trip tonight and hoping we can get some better suggestions if possible!

Thanks so much!

Lighting / Re: How to light for Fast Action at night...
« on: July 17, 2012, 04:15:49 PM »
600EX pair with better beamers, if time to order?

Edit: found it on B&H

Thanks Neuro!

Lighting / How to light for Fast Action at night...
« on: July 17, 2012, 04:01:29 PM »
I am doing some shoots tonight with some friends, we are going to capture the moment that a Tarpon eats our bait, and then shoots out of the water. Here is an example of what I am talking about:


Main difference, will be that ours is at night. This behavior is very common with these type of fish, especially when they get hooked. So my question is what lighting would be recommended to get a decent exposure. In most cases the fish are 20-30 feet away, so my 2 600EX's are not very handy here, possibly a spotlight? I have 1 assistant on the boat that can give me help with this lighting. The camera + lens being used is the 5D Mark III and 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II. I got a few hours to run to a local dive shop (spotlight?) or to my local photog shop if anyone has any suggestions.

Thanks so much for any and every bit of help!

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