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Messages - GuyF

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196
Abstract / Re: What is this?
« on: January 12, 2013, 05:41:20 AM »
my guess is he does research.  when I was doing lab work there was an insane amount of waiting-for-tests-to-finish-running time that we spent on the computer, setting up strange ways to destroy expensive magnets, or meaningless arguments

What about strange ways to destroy common magnets? For the rest of us of course.

Yeah! I'm a bit of an armchair scientist :D and need to know these things! Lots of heat might be a good start  ;D


197
United Kingdom & Ireland / Re: Jessops close to administration?
« on: January 12, 2013, 05:36:34 AM »
Yes Alex, I hope you find something soon. I suspect the clowns at the top will be okay though with pension funds and drawings/bonuses from the business. When you come to clear out the shop you could always make sure a 1DX "falls" into your pocket  ;)

As a slight aside, the one thing I just didn't like about Jessops was when I went in to price the gear I bought last year (about £5k), the bloke said, "yeah and if you give me a minute I'll get you details on insurance too." I pointed out I was quite well sorted for that but he was quite insistant. I finally had to look him straight in the eye and say pretty firmly I was only interested in the body/lenses. I mentioned this to the ex-Jessops guys who worked in Jacobs next door and they both agreed that that was one of the things that drove them from Jessops, the "insurance push" that came with every camera purchase. Lousy business model.

Take care.

198
Abstract / Re: What is this?
« on: January 11, 2013, 01:38:53 PM »
Jeez Neuro, for the huge volume of posts you make, you must have a colossal amount of spare time on your hands! (Not knocking your contributions, just amazed at the number!).

199
EOS Bodies / Re: taurians upgrading to 5d mark 3
« on: January 11, 2013, 01:32:48 PM »
Pfff, I don't believe in all that astrology mumbo-jumbo. (Typical Capricorn really).

200
United Kingdom & Ireland / Re: Jessops close to administration?
« on: January 11, 2013, 01:18:17 PM »
Cross-border shopping can't be helping bricks-and-mortar stores. It's crazy that I could save £415 on a 5D III shipped from Hong Kong compared with the same thing from even the lowest priced online retailer in the UK.

The impact seems to be bigger for retailers in the UK than in the US because the price differentials appear to be much wider here. Contentions about local warranty and returns explain why buying from HK isn't necessarily a good idea but they don't explain why the differential is so big in the UK. I'm not clear whether the HK sellers are dodging VAT or whether Canon UK simply demands higher retail margins but whatever the reason for this disparity, something needs to be done to level the playing field for UK retailers.

I agree, I sent a letter to the CEO of Canon europe when the 5DIII was released and impossible to source for less than £3000 for body only. My query was why i could import one from the US and pay the VAT and still be 30% better off. His reply was quite an eye opener. He sited that the UK retailers were expected to sell at a discounted rate from the RRP, but nearly all of the UK sellers were selling at max RRP due to low supply. The base sale price to the vendors / shops was pretty much the same in the US and UK excluding the VAT element. The 5DIII really didn't shift many boxes in the first month, compared to the mkII and mkI. The uk sellers were making nearly £500 per unit and passing the cost blame onto Canon. Rip off Brittain! My second 5DIII was bought for £1850 last month from a shop in Jersey. Full UK warranty and manual. In less than one year that camera has dropped £1150, which points to excessive profiteering from the UK sellers.

Interesting. So what the CEO is essentially saying is don't buy big ticket Canon gear when it comes out unless you can buy it without blinking or need it there and then for what it can do over your current gear as it isn't really worth the initial asking price.

I don't regret buying my 5D3 and a bunch of lenses from Jacobs the day after they went into administration but the fact you can now get the body for £1850 (fuuuuuuuuu....!!!!) does sting a teensy bit.

So the lesson to me is simple - when I come to buy another body (and I do like the thought of a mega-pixel 1D-type-of-thing though I don't need it), I'll wait at least until it is 66% of the RRP.

201
United Kingdom & Ireland / Re: Jessops close to administration?
« on: January 09, 2013, 01:19:31 PM »
I'm surprised they lasted this long. You knew things were looking bad years ago when the share price fell to 2p(!) and they were removed from the stock exchange. It's easy to speculate but I think they simply over-reached themselves by opening so many branches.

202
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: BLOWN away.
« on: January 05, 2013, 10:35:31 AM »
Hey Albi, be careful, he's an artist!

203
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: BLOWN away.
« on: January 05, 2013, 10:21:44 AM »
That guru of all things photographic, Ken Rockwell  :o, has this to say on the RX1:

http://www.kenrockwell.com/sony/rx1.htm

Seems a bit over-priced to me but that never stopped me running out and buying the latest gizmo that I felt I needed to make life (momentarily) better.

204
Technical Support / Re: Repairing Scratches - 5D MKIII
« on: January 05, 2013, 09:10:47 AM »
"Hell, this '59 Fender Stratocaster must sound terrible. Should be repaired immediately.

-PW"

Hey PW,

Is that a real '59 or a Custom Shop relic? (For non-guitar geeks; real or factory fake?)

Ta,

Guy.

205
I was told there would be pizza.

206
All,

Thank you so much for the quick replies and good advice.

I don't know any of the specifics at the moment other than the lad wants to try wildlife photography - his father said "birds and butterflies". It'll just be local Scottish wildlife (fields, reservoir, shoreline) rather than cheetahs running flat-out on the African plains. He also stays quite near a butterfly farm.

The SX50 just hadn't occurred to me. This is why this forum is invaluable! I've just had a quick look at the specs and it might be ideal.

Thanks again!

207
EOS Bodies - For Stills / Newcomer looking for budget wildlife equipment
« on: December 28, 2012, 02:20:10 PM »
A colleague tells me his son (late-teens rather than small child) is interested in getting a camera for shooting wildlife. Since he doesn't have much cash (budget to be decided) he'll be looking at the cheap end of things. As it's been a long time since I've looked at the entry-level stuff I need your help to show the lad what's on offer. A quick look around the web suggests it may be:

1. EOS 1100D (there's a £30 cashback deal on until 24th Jan.). Can get this for £278 (body) or £339 (with 18-55 IS).
2. EF 70-300 f4-5.6 IS. Can get this for £279 (US import) from same place I got my 300mm 2.8 IS so I know the guy is trustworthy.

The only drawbacks I can see are the 1100D doesn't have sensor cleaning and is only 3fps. Of course you can't expect 1DX performance for that money but I do have standards  ;).

Any advice would be welcomed. All options are possible though maybe not second-hand (who knows how high the body was dropped from?  :o)

Let the arguments begin!

208
Just had a look at the ad on eBay. Hmmm, seems really cheap. Let's look at the bad feedback....aha! Imported from Hong Kong, who'da guessed it?!? I know you can't judge a whole business by just looking at the bad feedback but there is enough to make me go elsewhere.

Just grit your teeth and pay more - support your local camera shop!

209
Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: December 07, 2012, 02:37:28 PM »
Sporgon,

Nice shot but I'd be tempted to airbrush out the one at the back and the one on the far right - I think that would "tighten-up" the compositon. Ah, it's easy to critique after the image is taken  ;)

Guy.

210
Canon General / Re: Recommended photography books
« on: December 07, 2012, 02:33:04 PM »
If you are mostly interested in portrait photography (as I am), the following list of books might prove to be very educational.
Sometimes you don't need to read about the technicalities of an image to gain a vast amount. Simply absorbing the image itself will educate you immensely - the pose, the composition, the props used etc. As I look through the many books I own I sometimes wonder if the image is fantastic because it depicts a famous person I like or whether it would still be a great photograph if it were of the man next door. Mostly it would be a great image no matter who it was of - the great photographers can make anyone look remarkable. That's the trick.

Two pieces of advice I'd give anyone doing portraiture:
1. Rarely have the subject smile: it can sometimes look too much like a snapshot.
2. Have them do something with their hands: we are so graphic with our hands when talking that it can change a portrait into a story - "I wonder what was being said?".

Anyway, I highly recommend all of these (get 'em off Amazon or wherever):

1. Vanity Fair Portraits
2. Patrick Demarchelier (self-titled and currently out of print - second-hand on Amazon currently for £300!! Glad I bought my copy a few years ago!)
3. Planton's Republic
4. Taking Aim by Graham Nash
5. Star Trak by Anton Corbijn
6. Degrees by Andy Gotts
7. Portraits by Uli Weber
8. UFO by Albert Watson
9. Jeanloup Seiff (self-titled and published by Taschen)
10. Les Indescretes by Jeanloup Sieff

Assuming all except 2. are still in print and easily available, they offer a lot to the aspiring photographer. Considering what we spend on equipment, a few bucks spent on books will provide years of pleasure. Plus think how much nicer your living room will look with quality books on its shelves.

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