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Lenses / Re: EF 24-70mm
« on: September 24, 2014, 11:31:41 PM »
You can also look at used lenses at Fred Miranda .com or similar. Look to buy from someone with 15-20 "Great" feedback or more, and recent history (so taht you know it wasn't a dormant account that got hacked.)

If you buy used at a good price it may cost you nothing to own the Version II lens, depending on where prices go with inflation (and also the value of the Yen.)

I own the 24-70 2.8 II and the 70-200 2.8 II. They are both absolutely fantastic lenses. Definitely the best lenses that I have ever owned.

I am shooting both Nikon and Canon. I could never switch completely to Nikon because I didn't want to sell my 2.8 zooms. I also had the Version 1 of the 24-70 2.8, also a wonderful lens.

While I love my Sigma 35 1.4 Art, Sigma has said that they won't be announcing any more lenses this year. So it could be March next year before they even announce something.  Some early adopters also had trouble with auto focus on the 35 Art and 50 Art., Sigma fixed that with firmware upgrades, but it may not be best to be the first to get a new Sigma lens.

Good luck!

I shoot both Nikon and Canon.

I am a former pro with 20+ years of experience. I own the Canon 24-70 2.8 II and the 70-200 2.8 II. I absolutely love those lenses. I only shoot the beat glass after using versions I and II of those for 10+ years.

The article is directly relevant to me as I decide which system to shoot as full frame and which to keep as a crop.

I have the Nikon D7100 and the Canon 6D right now for high ISO shooting. If I moved to the D610, D750, or D810, I would have to sell the Canon pair to buy the Nikon 24-70 and 70-200 II.

Those are basic, "bread and butter" lenses for a pro kit. But I really can't justify $3,000 used for the Nikon and $3,500 used for the Canon glass. And I'm not willing to sell the Canon glass. Yet.

Also, from the comments at the article:

"This sounds like someone is tempted by the D810 to switch…heehee, is that right?
I am in the same shoe, owning the 5D3 and the 2 Canon you mentioned above. The quality of the lenses is what is stopping me at the moment. And your article kind of confirms that."

Lenses / Re: Sigma Big Glass Impressions
« on: September 07, 2014, 01:04:09 AM »
Thanks for sharing!

I, too, have always shot with OEM glass. I have shot Canon digital for 12 years since the D30.

I have also been playing with Nikon. I was frustrated though, because the focus and zoom rings turn in the opposite direction. With my muscle memory, I turn them the wrong way every time.

But the Sigma turn in the same direction as Canon. The Sigma 50-150 2.8 OS is also the sharpest and highest rated zoom on the D7100, according to DxO. The 17-50 2.8 OS is the sharpest standard zoom.

So bought those 2 lenses for a total of $1,050 as my "standard" zooms on my D7100. They are both excellent lenses, especially for the price.

I have the Canon 24-70 2.8 II and 70-200 2.8 II. The Sigma aren't quite as good, but they are a very decent "2nd tier." I am sure that they are very close stopped down.

The 17-50 Sigma costs about $400 used, versus about $1,750 for the Canon 24-70 II. The 50-150 OS was about $700 used, versus $1,800 or more for a used 70-200 2.8 II.

Then I bought the Sigma 35 1.4 Art, which is an absolutely amazing lens! It is right in the same league with the Canon 24-70 II and 70-200 II. I can't say enough good things about it.

I used to have quite a few Canon primes, but I gave them up in favor of the zooms for almost everything. The only real reason I turn to a prime now is for something faster than the zooms. The Sigma is fantastic wide open at 1.4, I don't hesitate to use it that way.

I am looking forward to a rumored Sigma 24 1.4 Art, 84 1.4 Art, and the 135 1.8 or 2.0

I would especially love to see the rumored 24-70 2.0, I could really use that extra stop for events where I am shooting wide open at ISO 3200 and 6400.

I would also love to try out the Sigma 18-35 1.8. I suppose I could sell the 17-50 and switch to that, along with the Sigma 50 1.4. Art.

The Sigma 120-300 2.8 OS is also supposed to be a great lens. Too many choices...


Lenses / Re: Need some advice - lens calibration
« on: September 06, 2014, 10:30:49 PM »
Three things:

1.) > landing at -10 (-17, +3)

The center of-17, +3 is not -10. If you counted the spread as 20, it is -17+10 = -7. Very close to your previous -8.

2.) You can't test a lens using autofocus! You need to use Live View and manual focus:

From Roger Cicala:

3.) Also from Roger, "How to Test a Lens":

Setting up an optical testing station:

Examples using the optical testing station:

Good luck!

EOS-M / Re: Another great toy for EOS-M
« on: June 03, 2014, 10:55:18 PM »
I ABSOLUTELY LOVE my EOS M! Great little camera.

I was looking on DxO Optics. The 22 mm kit lens on the EOS M - that costs $95 new on eBay - is as sharp as my Canon 24-70 2.8 II on my Canon T4i. Not bad for a $250 camera & lens combo!!  :)

I have a Hoodman viewfinder that I use on my EOS M - same basic thing.

I have found, though, that by turning the LCD to full brightness, I can see it in full sunshine with no problem. 

I tested it, turning fully around in a 360 degree circle. The only place I had trouble was when my face was fully lit my the sun, when my subject was backlit, for about 20 degrees of the arc. I could solve the problem just by tilting a ball cap down trp shade my face.

The rest of the time, I had no problem seeing the LCD with brightness all of the way up.

One tip: You can program the "Trash Can" button to increase the LCD to full brightness. Works great!

Otherwise I use the "Trash Can" button to change ISO. I put the Custom Function to select the mapping of that button on "My Menu."

I never need to change ISO in bright sunlight, so it works perfectly to switch that to the LCD brightness ...

Good luck!

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon EOS M Vanishes from Canon USA Web Site
« on: May 27, 2014, 03:11:56 PM »
Now that it dropped so dramatically in price,
buying it was a no-brainer.

And wow - I can't remember having had so much
fun with a camera ever before.


I am a former pro, 30 years out from getting an undergraduate degree in Photography.

I bought 2 EOS M a couple of months ago. It is the first camera that I just pick up and play with every day in at least 10 years. It is just such a great little camera!

I am eagerly looking forward to an EOS M3 with Dual Pixel Auto Focus. I hope we get one soon, probably at Photokina?

The EOS M2 is $660 on eBay direct from Japan. I'd like to see the entry level EOS M at a bit less than that with the 18-55 kit, then I think it would be more of a success in the US. The NEX 6 looks like it is selling pretty well at $525 with the kit lens.

We will see!

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon 70d center focus point -bug- problem
« on: May 16, 2014, 12:11:54 PM »
OLD Lens  Versus NEW Lens

The OLD Canon 24mm f/2.8 lens was released in 1988 making it one of the oldest designed Canon lenses available.

 while the NEW Canon 24mm f/2.8 IS USM was just released last year.


1.) The OLD 24 mm on an OLD 5D Mk2

2.) The OLD 24 2.8 on a NEW 5D M3

3.) The  NEW 24 2.8 IS on a NEW 5D M3

Look at that last graph! Newer lenses are amazingly good on a newer body.

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon 70d center focus point -bug- problem
« on: May 16, 2014, 11:40:46 AM »
More text from that article:

"Let me again differentiate ‘testing quality focus’ from ‘picture taking focus’.

If I was taking a 3-Dimensional picture, all of the images above the 850 line would be virtually indistinguishable. The two phase-detection shots that are lower would probably be acceptable; if you were comparing identical shots you might notice the two had slightly missed focus, but not horribly.

But when we’re assessing a 2-dimensional test chart, that would be enough to make the lens look unacceptable.

Phase detection accuracy is different with different cameras and even with different lenses on the same camera. The pair used in this example are quite accurate; not the very best, but better than average. The very best (in these conditions) we’ve tested, the Canon 5DIII or 1Dx with certain lenses, are nearly as accurate as contrast detection AF.

Good microfocus adjustment lets the phase detection system focus at the proper location, but it can’t make the pattern of variation much smaller. (If MF adjustment is really off, the pattern can be bigger than this, but this is about as good as it gets.)

One other point that will become more apparent with the next two posts: some of the most sensitive indicators of a decentered lens are seen when it’s just barely out of focus. So the testing I’m going to describe will require evaluating the lens both in focus, and just barely out of focus in both directions. You can’t do that kind of evaluation with phase-detection AF.

So What’s Next?

This first post was to demonstrate that hand-held, autofocus optical testing isn’t very useful. If you want to test a lens using autofocus go take pictures and see if you like the lens, which is really what I recommend everyone do, anyway.

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon 70d center focus point -bug- problem
« on: May 16, 2014, 11:36:47 AM »
Roger Cicala: "Why You Can't Optically Test Your Lens With Autofocus"

To summarize my point, if I am checking a lens like our techs do all day, manual focus is simply much more accurate than phase-detection autofocus.

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon 70d center focus point -bug- problem
« on: May 16, 2014, 11:30:37 AM »
What we need to see to know if there really is a problem is an autofocus test similar to those done by Roger Cicala.

Every auto focus system will deliver a range of values. Look at how he measured the accuracy of focus on different bodies and different lenses.

He did 10 repeated focus attempts with phase detection and manual focus. Gave us the standard deviation of the focus error.

Compared that between older Canon bodies and newer Canon bodies. And also found out that newer lenses focused more accurately.

So you need to repeat the focus test 10 times, because it will vary. Measure those errors. Use one of the newer Canon lenses. And compare that to cameras of the same class - 60D, 50D, T4i.


Show that you understand the system well enough to demonstrate an anomoly.

Most of this is just people finally learning how auto focus works.

Please, read these articles. Then we can talk:

Roger Cicala's posts on auto focus:

Autofocus Reality Part 1

Roger Cicala: "Why You Can't Optically Test Your Lens With Autofocus"

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon 70d center focus point -bug- problem
« on: May 15, 2014, 09:18:17 PM »
This issue really says one thing: DPAF rocks! Some of the videos out there are pixel peeping at 200% to notice the difference. This is not a new issue, but since live view focusing is suddenly super accurate people start to realize that phase detection AF has acceptable tolerances. That is why AFMA was created.

This is a great summary!

Luds34's post was also spot on.

I don't mean to be mean to anyone, but this is very sophisticated equipment in many ways. What people are describing as a defect is 1.) Present on every camera made, and 2.) User error ...


EOS Bodies / Re: Canon 70d center focus point -bug- problem
« on: May 15, 2014, 09:16:04 PM »
LOL I like this post alot :D

I suppose it is a bit mean, at least that last line is.  :)

But the only ones who should take offense to that are the ones who insist that "if you don't have a problem, you don't know how to use your camera." 

Just another internet conspiracy theory. Lots of talk in those threads about how widespread the problem is, how "1 in 1,000 defects is too many", how Canon is hiding it the problem, etc.

People just need to educate themselves. 


EOS Bodies / Re: Canon 70d center focus point -bug- problem
« on: May 15, 2014, 03:42:36 PM »
Have gone through the POTN thread and some people there are even implying that people "without" this problem do not know how to use their cameras. So, I guess the people posting excellent shots on the 70d sample thread don't know how to use their 70ds.

Ah - the dreaded "Dunning-Kruger Effect":

"The skills needed to produce logically sound arguments, for instance, are the same skills that are necessary to recognize when a logically sound argument has been made. Thus, if people lack the skills to produce correct answers, they are also cursed with an inability to know when their answers, or anyone else's, are right or wrong. They cannot recognize their responses as mistaken, or other people's responses as superior to their own."

"The Dunning-Kruger effect occurs where people fail to adequately assess their level of competence — or specifically, their incompetence — at a task.

This lack of awareness is attributed to their lower level of competence robbing them of the ability to critically analyse their performance, leading to a significant overestimate of themselves. Put more crudely, they're too stupid to realize they're stupid."

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon 70d center focus point -bug- problem
« on: May 15, 2014, 03:10:39 PM »
I also why "30-50 percent of cameras in Germany" have this problem....

Hysteria!! :)

The second video should have taken this on much more strongly. This is just nonsense,

1. YOU CANNOT HAND HOLD AN 85 1.2 or 50 1.4 and hit your focus target consistently wide open!

2. YOU CANNOT FOCUS AND RECOMPOSE wide open!  The camera needs to be locked down on a tripod for these tests.

3.  You have to learn A LOT about autofocus to understand how to accurately test your focus.

From Roger Cicala: "Why You Can't Optically Test Your Lens With Autofocus"

4. You have to learn A LOT about autofocus to understand the different features/settings on auto focus.

Anyone who has ever owned a 1DX, for example, will tell you that they had to study the auto focus manual for that camera to learn all of the features. And then test like hell to underastand exactly how to use it in the field.

One example: You can select and set the sensitivity of first shot "focus acquisition  priority or shutter release priority."Basically - do you want the camera to ensure absolute best focus before taking a shot, or have a bias toward taking the shot no matter what?

Then you can also tune that for subsequent shots. And that is just one of the focus modes.  This is a 55 page book we are talkinmg about:

"Mastering the EOS 1D X's Autofocus System"

Also time to read up on more of Roger Cicala's posts on auto focus:

These people need to be educate themselves and digest that information before we can talk about an issue with the 70D.  This is just the way that the world works.

When Roger tells me that there is a problem with the 70D, I will believe him. :)


EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: 6D + 24-105 vs T4i + 24-70 II
« on: January 14, 2013, 07:03:31 PM »
I'll disagree.

I have the T4i and the 5DIII.  I have owned the 24-70 for many years, first version I and now II.

The T4i is a great camera. The true cost to own is very, very low. If you buy the body for $600 or less, the per year cost to own - depreciation - is going to be less than $100 per year, maybe as low as $50.  Buy it for $600,, use it for 2 years, sell for $475 or more. Incredibly cheap for incredibly much camera.

As a pro, the ONLY reason I keep the 5DIII in addition to the T4i is for ISO 6400 and above. Otherwise I could live with the T4i as my main camera.

The 24-105 is good, but I sold mine to go back to my bread and butter 24-70. I use that for 85% or more of my work.

Add the 17-40 for $500 and you are covered on the wide end.  Or buy the 18-135 STM for video and wide angle.

Wait for Canon to launch a brand new sensor before you upgrade to full frame. It will cost you next to no money to buy & use the T4i. Then you can keep it as a backup camera.

If you are going to listen to others advice, listen to those who HAVE OWNED the T4i. Many who haven't just don't "get" that camera. The sensor is basically as good as/the same as the other Canon sensors right now, just in a crop. The auto focus is the same as the Canon 60D.

Good luck.

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