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Topics - Albi86

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Lenses / A 500mm f/5.6?
« on: February 21, 2014, 04:31:36 AM »
I recently got my Tamron 150-600mm and I'm loving it. Tamron has shown that it is possible to build a pretty decent 150-600mm f/6.3 zoom at an affordable price. This has some interesting implications.

It is often thought that with long and fast lenses, the amount of glass needed is a big factor in the price hike. If I am correct, a 600mm f/6.3 must have a front element with a diameter of at least 95.24mm. The Tamron is just about there, with a 95mm filter thread. This could explain how sharpness grows considerably when stopping down to f/8, as if the size of the front element was barely enough to achieve the FL/aperture combination desired.

I would like to share an observation. A 500mm f/5.6 would have a front element with a diameter of at least 89.28mm. This makes the use of a 95mm filter thread much more advantageous. In other words, it should be possible to build a 500/5.6 with more or less the same glass as for a 600/6.3 - thus around the same price. If you consider that building a shorter prime should be easier than building a longer zoom, a 500/5.6 at around 1100 EUR/USD is both technically feasible and promising IQ-wise. The Big Ron (or Tamrosaurus, or Tankron) gets really sharp at f/8; trading 100mm of focal length for a full stop of light (without losing IQ) could be worthwhile in many situations. For reference, the Canon 400/5.6 L takes 77mm filters having a front element of at least 71.43mm and the IQ is still good although it's an old lens.

Thoughts?

2
Third Party Manufacturers / Samyang will start producing AF lenses
« on: February 12, 2014, 04:51:27 PM »
Did anyone see this?

http://photorumors.com/2014/02/12/samyang-to-start-producing-autofocus-af-lenses/

Seems like an interesting plot twist. They make some very good lenses.

3
Software & Accessories / Comfortable strap?
« on: January 22, 2014, 06:31:26 AM »
I would like to replace the standard camera strap with something longer and more comfortable.

Ideally it should be padded and long enough to wear it as a sling pack and pull it up to my eyes when needed. Some straps of this sort are attached via a plate at the bottom of the camera, but I don't like them because the camera tends to dangle a lot.

I have eyed this one: http://store.lowepro.com/lowepro-accessories/transporter-camera-strap

But it doesn't look very long...

Suggestions? :)


4
Lighting / Canon 270 EX II or...?
« on: January 20, 2014, 03:05:47 AM »
I need a small, portable and non-intimidating speedlite for a 5D Mark III. That said, keep in mind that it's going to be the one I use the most.

Basically it's supposed to replace the missing pop-up flash for filling shadows in back-lit scenarios. It will sit on the camera 99.9% of the time, so ETTL is a must. Of course other features such as swivel, AF beam etc are welcome.

In Canon's lineup the 270 EX II seems to fit the bill, but the price seems hefty. It costs as much as a Yongnuo YN568 O.o

Other suggestions? I know of the Sunpak RD2000, but I've been reading of missing firmware updates and it has quenched my enthusiasm about it. I've been looking at the Metz flashes, but none seem very small.

Suggestions/experiences appreciated :)

5
Third Party Manufacturers / Lenstip review of the Zeiss Sonnar 135/2
« on: November 05, 2013, 12:21:00 PM »
http://www.lenstip.com/388.1-Lens_review-Carl_Zeiss_Apo_Sonnar_T*_135_mm_f_2.0_ZE_ZF.2_Introduction.html

Basically one of the best lenses ever.

This sort of lens makes me really rethink my idea of buying a mirrorless.

6
EOS Bodies - For Stills / I bought/would buy a 6D and not a D600 because...
« on: December 30, 2012, 11:40:04 AM »
Just out of curiosity :)

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Pricewatch Deals / Does anybody know applelectronic.com?
« on: December 29, 2012, 02:24:35 PM »
I was surfing around and I stumbled upon this shop.

They openly sell grey-market stuff offering their own warranty for 1 year.

Prices are extremely nice for Europe.

Did anybody ever buy from them?

8
Hi all,
I would like to hear some first-hand experiences from people using a 5D3 and M/F lenses. They can be Canon, 3rd-party or adapted vintage pieces. I am of course particularly interested in shooting at very wide apertures - let's say f/2 as a minimum - and in knowing how precise focus confirmation is without a dedicated screen - like the EG-S.

To be clear, I mean shooting looking through the viewfinder and using the focus points, not in live-view mode.

Thanks in advance for any comment :)

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EOS Bodies - For Stills / 5D MK2 or MK3 for Manual Focus?
« on: October 07, 2012, 06:09:38 AM »
Considering IQ is basically the same, the MK3's improved AF is almost wasted if you use manual focus lenses only.

At the same time, the 5D2 has interchangeable screens, while the 5D3 doesn't.

My only doubt is: does the 5D3 offer focus confirmation with EVERY focus point? Do they blink/stay red as when using an AF lens? In that case one wouldn't need a screen and the 5D3 might get tempting after all.

10
Lenses / Vintage Lenses: Any Advise?
« on: September 24, 2012, 09:33:43 AM »
I would like to get a setup of old, possibly all-metal, manual focus fast primes.

I am a child of the AF generation, so I'm very little experienced in this sense and I don't know which ones are worth having nowadays.

I'm interested in 20-28mm, 30-40mm, 50-60mm, 85-100mm and 135mm. A standard setup.

Please share your opinions with me. Doesn't matter about brands, as long as they can be adapted and that it makes sense to buy them price-wise.

Thank you!

11
Lenses / Review: Voigtländer Color Skopar 28/2.8 SL II
« on: September 23, 2012, 06:10:40 AM »
For anyone who might interested in this lens, I found this:

http://translate.google.com/translate?sl=ja&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fdc.watch.impress.co.jp%2Fdocs%2Freview%2Flens_review%2F20120524_534810.html

Google translation is kinda weird, but the pictures speak by themselves. Looks like it fares very well on the hungry D800's sensor, and the bokeh is very smooth.

For those of you not familiar with the brand, as far as I know these lenses are now manufactured by Cosina in Japan, who also manufactures Zeiss lenses. The difference is that Voigtländer lenses are designed and manufactured in-house by Cosina, whereas the Zeiss are manufactured according to Zeiss design and QC specifications. In practical terms, you can expect the same level of build quality.

To my understanding, as a consequence of the very small size it lacks a floating element, so IQ in close focus tends to deteriorate.

For the price though - half the Zeiss 28/2 - I'm almost sold. It's available in Canon and Nikon mount, both of them chipped and with AV coupling.

12
Lenses / Manual Focus Lenses: Smarter in F-Mount?
« on: September 22, 2012, 06:44:34 AM »
I was wondering, since we all know Nikon lenses can be mounted on Canon bodies but not viceversa, is it not smarter to buy manual-focus-only lenses always in Nikon mount and buy an adapter?

That would minimize the inconveniences of side-grading, and would make expensive lenses such as Zeiss, Voigtländer and Schneider-Kreuznach a very safe investment.

Is there any disadvantage I'm neglecting? Any problem with aperture control?

14
Pricewatch Deals / Buying from Switzerland
« on: September 19, 2012, 04:43:31 AM »
If like me you are European, you know very well how frustrating the 1:1 $/€ conversion in street price is.

I noticed that many Swiss shops have amazingly low prices compared to other European countries. Being Switzerland out of the Euro-zone, custom fees still applies though.

One thing is not clear to me:

If I go to Switzerland to pick the stuff personally, how can they demonstrate it wasn't mine already?

Let's put it the other way around: I go to Switzerland and I get checked at the douane. They will find my smartphone, my laptop, etc etc. They are my personal effects bought in my home country, I won't have to pay fees to carry them with me in Switzerland. Now imagine I go back to my country: how can they proove I bought my camera there and didn't have it with me when I arrived?

Or put it otherwise: if I live in Switzerland for 5 years before coming back to my home country, am I supposed to pay import taxes on a 5 years old product I bought there?

15
Software & Accessories / Epson Stylus Photo PX 830 FWD Printer
« on: June 14, 2012, 11:35:03 AM »
Someone knows/owns it?

I've been considering for a while to print my own pictures. I like to print up to 20x30cm, and having a photolab do it is expensive on the long term.

I've stumbled upon this printer, and I'm impressed by the good comments and affordable price (180€). It would be Epson's top line in non-professional printers.

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