September 22, 2014, 06:54:07 PM

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Messages - Steve Todd

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Photography Technique / Re: HDR (and DR) Question
« on: February 22, 2014, 02:16:49 PM »
I'm like you, I just size-up the scene and make my decision based on how much contrast it contains.

I have found that 2-stops works pretty well!  I have shot several hand-held (highest continious shooting speed) in full sunlight that turned out very well when using the "Auto Align" feature in DPP.  However, I would use a tripod and the slow continuous shooting speed setting for scenes with less than full sunlight.

Hope this helps.

EOS Bodies / New EOS-1D X, 4x5 Flipbook Now Available
« on: February 22, 2014, 11:57:25 AM »
Use this link to download Canon's new 4"x5" flipbook for the 1DX:

Sorry, here's a better link:   The PDF is at the bottom of the page.

New photos and simplified explanation of new features contained in the recent firmware 2.0.3 release.

EOS Bodies / Canon CPS Irvine Experience
« on: February 16, 2014, 11:36:51 AM »
I have read several posts on CR from people that said they had experienced problems with the Canon Factory Service Center in Irvine, CA.  Well, I don't believe it's just me, but I have never been anything but completely satisfied with the folks at Irvine.  I've used them for over 16-years now and they never fail to amaze me with their excellent customer service, and professional product repair/clean & check procedures. 

Although I live in Albuquerque, New Mexico, I make several trips out to the coast each year.  The Canon Irvine facility is located just 20min. from where my Daughter lives, making it very convenient for me to drop my gear off and get it serviced while I enjoy the great California weather.  Additionally, I save a bunch on shipping and insurance costs this way too!

On my trip out there last week, I needed to have my 1DX and 1D4 bodies cleaned and checked.  The 1D4 also required adjustment, as it took a large amount of MFA (-10 to -16) on most of my telephoto lenses to attain sharp focus!  I had never checked this fully, as I had a second 1D4 that I used almost exclusively and only used wide-angle lenses with this body.  Although the body was obuiously in "as new" condition and the shutter actuation count was exactly 1,000, I was informed that there would be a service fee ($100+) for that body.

Lesson learned, always fully check new bodies thoroughly before the warrantee expires!  Fortunately for me, after reviewing my CPS account and discussing the issue with CPS management, they performed the service at no charge.  Additionally, they completed work on my bodies well ahead of the projected three-day turn around.  They certainly didn't have to do all this for me, but they did!  Just one more example where the Canon Irvine folks went above and beyond for one of their customers.

You're most welcome Neuro!

The following link will take you to the revised 1DX AF Guide Book:

Lots of good stuff per the firmware 2.0.3 update!  PDF to download the guide is at the bottom of the page.

EOS Bodies / Best Sensor Cleaning Products
« on: February 06, 2014, 11:14:13 AM »
Although I get two cleaning and function checks each year as part of my CPS membership, I find it's just not enough to keep up with the crud that ends up on my camera sensors.  Even using extreme measures (changing lenses in the car or indoors whenever possible) to keep dust out of the bodies, and blow cleaning, just doesen't cut it!  Although Canon does a good job of cleaning, the hastle of getting the bodies out to them every year is not simple or cheap either!

I'd like to master the art of dry and wet sensor cleaning.  I'm a little reluctant to venture into doing that myself, as I have read of people having to send their cameras to a Canon service center for cleaning or repair after trying to clean their sensors themselves. 

However, I believe many of you sucessfully and routenely clean your sensors yourselves and must have recommendations on what wet and dry (more than just using a blower) methods and products work the best, so any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!  BTW, I have reviewed the methods used on the Lens Rental site, but would still like to hear what has worked for you!

Lenses / Re: Review: Canon EOS 100-400 f/4.5-5.6 L IS USM by DxO Mark
« on: January 29, 2014, 10:05:27 AM »
I purchased mine in 1999 after using one of the CPS loaner lenses at the Daytona 500.  It served me well with my EOS-1v film bodies.  However, I have had mixed results with Digital bodies.  It required -15 MA on my 1D4 bodies to be reasonably sharp and when the 1.4x III is add, the results are very disappointing.  On my 1DX body, it required only -2 MA, but still isn't terrific.  However, on my 5DII body (no MA capability) it is pretty sharp?  I like the coverage, but I hope a version "II" is in the works!

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon naming policy
« on: January 18, 2014, 06:12:44 PM »
Interesting to note that with the release of the 1DX and 1DC, the 1D model markings changed from "EOS-1", with the "D" or "DS" on their own plate now marked with the "X" or "C", to "EOS-1D" on the main marking!  Several of my friends who use the 1DX, never even noticed that change!

As Canon still produces the EOS-1 V film body (of which I still have two!), I guess the marking change now truly separates the digital and film bodies.  The change marks an end to the EOS-1 model designation (unless they produce a new film model) introduced almost 25-years ago! (and I thought I paid a lot for them back then, who'd have ever guessed we would pay what we do today for that model number!).

So, Canon is obviously not reluctant to make a name or naming change as they see necessary, even if it's only as slight as what they have done with the "1" series!

EOS Bodies / It's here! Firmware version 2.0.3 for the EOS-1D X
« on: January 08, 2014, 09:07:13 PM »
Canon USA website for the 1DX

"Drivers & Software
We have detected your operating system. You may select a different OS from the drop down menu if you wish. Click on the file name to navigate to download, then click on "I Agree - Begin Download" to start downloading.

Operating System: 

Show All


File Description       Date    Size
  EOS-1D X Firmware Version 2.0.3 [Mac OS X]      01/09/14   33.34 MB"


EOS Bodies / EOS-1D X Firmware Version 2.0
« on: January 08, 2014, 02:25:37 PM »
Looking at the Canon USA web site for the 1DX, one could assume the new firmware version 2.0 is already out there!  Maybe this is an indicator that it might be released at any time?

Here's what's on it:


The choice of professionals in fields ranging from extreme sports to wedding photographers, the EOS-1D X DSLR camera is incomparable in speed, ruggedness and precision. And it only gets better.  Responding to user input, the new Firmware Update Version 2.0 adds enhancements that provide improved AF performance and more control of exposure and customization, helping to ensure EOS-1D X users have an ideal tool to do what they do best: capturing those golden opportunities, wherever and whenever they happen."

EOS Bodies / Re: New 1DX Firmware Version 2
« on: January 07, 2014, 10:32:31 AM »
OK, I'm ready for it!  The suspense is killing me!  Actually, I don't really expect it to be released until the end of Jan.
Should be great when it does get here!

Lenses / Re: EF 24-70 f2.8L II Now or Wait and See?
« on: December 27, 2013, 02:45:18 PM »
Thanks neuro!  I'm leaning that way right now.  However, there are some pretty good prices right now with rebates and all, it's still tempting.

Lenses / EF 24-70 f2.8L II Now or Wait and See?
« on: December 27, 2013, 01:59:10 PM »
I have used the EF 24-105 f4, for four years now and have been pretty satisfied with the IQ.  However, after seeing the images shot with the 24-70 f2.8L II, I feel I am missing out on making some great images in those focal lengths.
Having read on this site, that this could be the "year of the lens," I am wondering if I should hold out for a while and see if a new/updated version of the EF 24-105L comes out before purchasing the 24-70.  I doubt that any of the new lenses will include an upgraded version of the 24-105L, let alone an f2.8 version of it, but one can only hope!  I think I would be happy if they came out with a 24-135L f4, if it had great IQ.  Thoughts please!  Happy New Year!

Software & Accessories / Problems with new Image Browser for PCs
« on: December 01, 2013, 07:02:05 PM »
I just downloaded Canon's new replacement for their Zoom Browser program for PCs.  It's called Image Browser, just like their application for Mac products.  After installing, it stalled at the 80 percent complete point.  After a conversation with CPS, they provided a link to fix the condition:

Software & Accessories / Colors off on new IPad
« on: November 22, 2013, 10:31:27 AM »
Don't know if this has been discussed before, but I had to return my IPad Air because the colors on the display were way off!  Blues looked purple and most images that had light tones were rendered with a yellowish cast.  After comparing the images with my first generation IPad (colors very accurate) to those on three of the new Air models, it was very obvious they have a definite color accuracy/calibration issue.  The good news, is that I got my money back; the bad news, I am without a new IPad.  Hopefully, enough people have complained to Apple about this and they will develop a fix!  My current IPad still works fine, but I will need one with more storage space pretty soon.  I have read reports from other folks that have experienced this too.  Also, some that have returned their Air and received
a replacement that was just fine? However, I would recommend that anyone looking to purchase the new Air, might consider the color accuracy issue before purchasing one! 

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